Saturday, November 12, 2011

Aidan Turns Three!

That's right, he's 3!
The years have flown by, and our little peanut is already 3! We had a shark-themed family party while my parents were in town. Aidan requested chocolate frosting, so it was a cute brown shark. I also made him a shark shirt and hats for everyone too.

As always, a video and photos to show the fun:

Topless cake eating
Aidan wore out his little car and needed something faster, so we went in with Gummy and PopPop on a new PowerWheels. It's been awesome!

Aidan and Sierra drive this car around and around!
PopPop and Gummy here in Boylston.
Real life Angry Birds has been a bit hit.
The whole family loves playing this!
Columbus Day was our 3rd annual trip to Mt. Wachusett with the Dancy Clan, and this year Aidan hiked most of the way all by himself! We went on the back side, which was even longer. Leigh took lots of great Infra-Red photos :-)

Aidan loved hiking!

This section was pretty scary with a kid on my back!
At the summit.

Aidan continues to amaze us with what he can do and the things he says. He's counting past 10, sings the alphabet, can identify about 10 letters and write a few, knows months, rides a bike really well... the list goes on. And pretty soon he's going to learn to ski too - I can't wait!! 

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Aidan had his first sports class on Friday - the first in a series to introduce the little guys to basic sports. We started off with soccer, and I think there's also baseball, hockey, football, and maybe even more. I was proud that he got right into it and listened to the coach.

So excited to get his own membership card!

Somehow, all the 2.5 to 3.5 year olds lined up!

So cute to watch them run back and forth.
Aidan always seemed to be near this little boy!

We're excited for next week's class!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Adventures Out West

I'm back from a blogging hiatus! July and August absolutely flew by, and I feel like we've been busier than ever traveling and being out and about. We had an amazing 2 week excursion to Colorado and California, so I pulled together some of my favorites photos to show a little variety of the places we went and the people we saw.

First, we went to Longmont to stay with Kevin and Jennifer. The kids had a blast together! Sierra and Nola were still best pals, chasing each other around and playing kitchen together. We took all the kids to a great kiddie pool, with a slide that Aidan loved. He did laps and laps of going down the slide and swimming to to the other side. Sierra and Nola happened to have the same bathing suit!

Aidan and Derrick loved riding and striding together.

Jennifer hosted a wonderful party on my 27th birthday, and we enjoyed catching up with old friends and eating lots of hawaiian food and chocolate gelato cake.

After a trip to the mountains to visit Sean and Erin (where my camera refused to work and the gondola wasn't actually open when they said it would be....) we were back for a dinner out at our favorite restaurant, then Friday it was time to head to San Jose!

The kids were so excited to see Gummy and PopPop! They loved having Gummy do the turtle song.

Every day with my parents starts off with some sort of donut, pastry, or bagel - it's lots of fun but not good for my diet! On Saturday, we picked up Psycho Donuts on the way to Vasona Park to ride the steam engine train. Aidan isn't usually much of an eater but he always finds room for a whole chocolate donut!

Sunday was our day at Great America, where we rented a cabana by the wave pool. Unfortunately Aidan was too little to go down the water slides, but he loved swimming in the pools and going on the kiddie rides and he just made it on the Log Flume!

On Monday we headed to Yosemite to stay in a rustic-yet-modern log cabin and bunkhouse with lots of Dancies, and just a few miles away was another house of extended family!

We took a short hike with Leah in the valley on our first day in the park, and saw Half Dome, and Upper and Lower Yosemite Falls.

Thomas and Aidan loved playing together, and they happened to have the same PJ's!

We spent Wednesday morning swimming at a lake and relaxing a bit, and on Thursday drove out to Glacier Point to get a beautiful view of Half Dome. It was totally worth the drive and I was so excited to actually the famous Yosemite sites!

We spent the day with Chris, Monica, Sophia, and Mateo - which was awesome since they also had a toddler and a baby and were on the same schedule. On the way back we stopped at Tunnel View and Bridalveil Falls, and got to feel the spray of the waterfall and walk in the glacial water.

We took a big group photo on the last night there.

We headed back to San Jose for the second weekend, and on Saturday we went to the Monteray Bay Aquarium. Aidan loved the penguins and sharks, and we saw a fantastic jelly fish display and a creepy octopus!

On Sunday Dave and Jimena had a big pool party! Again we got to catch up with lots of old friends - this time mostly Isaac's college friends who are now in the bay area. I like Isaac's caption for this super cute picture: "A little old lady, and Grandma".

For our last full day, we took the kids to Happy Hollow - a kids' amusement park in San Jose. Aidan got to ride a real rollercoaster!

We were supposed to fly out Tuesday morning, but they kept delaying our flight little-by-little, until they eventually cancelled it completely! The kids held up amazing well but I was really stressed out. After spending the whole day at San Francisco airport, we ended up back in San Jose, on a red-eye that of course got delayed. We did get to have one last meal with my parents, albeit in the airport...

The kids were totally wiped! So were we!

It was absolutely amazing to spend 2 weeks with honey and the kids and see friends and family. It was crazy and hectic and full of fun adventures - I wouldn't want it any other way.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Friday in the city

The kids and I went to Boston today for a playdate! A big storm changed our original plans to meet at the park, but we ended up having lots of fun playing inside instead.

Sierra being Sierra.

Aidan loved helping Jack with the puzzles.

Lindsey loves her little guy!

And Chase still loves Sierra.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

How To Paint a Basketball Court (at someone else's house!)

Jenna came up with the idea that for Abram & Leigh's anniversary we should clandestinely paint a basketball court on their driveway. It's something they always talk about doing, but it just takes time -- something they don't have between flying, cycling, kid taxiing, overly-aggressive adult soccer leagues, etc.

I was totally game. The best kind of home-improvement project -- when you're learning on the job -- is at someone else's house!

The weekend of their anniversary, Abram & Leigh were off in upstate New York, but unfortunately, it rained all weekend. Luckily the following weekend they were once again in New York (at a wedding), and the weather was perfect.

Finding all the online basketball-court templates wanting, we decided to just do it ourselves with the power of geometry and duct tape. Here's how you do it:

1. Drop a plumb from the hoop to determine points A, B, C and D. Draw lines AB and CD. The intersection is K, the origin.
2. Extend line CD to EF with segments EK and FK each being 5'10". If I were doing this again, I'd also drop the plumb from the ends of the backboard to ensure that EF is in parallel.
3. Geometry baby! Triangles EFT and EFU both have right-angles and two dimensions are known. Use this info to make arcs G, H, I and J. The arc intersections give you points T and U. Note that each painted line has a width of 2" and the inner foul line should be at 13'7".
4. LE = 21", LM = 12", MN = 36", NO = 2", OP = 36", PQ = 2", QR = 36", RS = 2". All blocks have an 8" depth but we decided to offset them 2" and have a 6" depth.
5. To make the three-point arc, measure 19'7" from K with a non-stretchy line. We just used the tape-measure and rotated in sync.
6. To make the foul-line arc, measure 5'10" from the center of the foul line.

We were originally hoping the A&L Dancy kids would be around to help entertain the little ones. Fortunately, Aidan had fun with the lawn mower and Sierra could be corralled for minutes at a time.

All our measurements were to the inside of the line, then we used masking tape of the correct width (2") to create a placeholder for the line. Then we used duct tape to mark the outside of the line. I was sore for 4 days from all this bending over -- that's what she said! Topic for discussion: when did I get so old?

We couldn't NOT do the semi-circle at the top of the lane. This tight circle was a little too much for the duct tape, as it kept folding and occasionally not bending well enough. I used a knife to create the intersection between the two arcs.

We originally intended to paint with rollers, but it bled. Instead we used my paint sprayer. For paint we're using latex zone-marking paint.

Even though it looked like we had enough buffer around the lines, there was a clear halo of paint from the sprayer. We tried scrubbing it off, but our kids woke up from their naps. We'll correct this in v2.0.

Still, it looks pretty good!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Sierra @ 1 Year

Ooops - 10 days late on Sierra's last monthly update! I feel like I'm behind on everything right now! Anyway, now that Isaac got our computer working again, here's what Sierra is up to:

- still only takes 3-4 steps!
- loves playing the binkie game and puckering up for kisses, and does it with the cutest look on her face
- says "cat" and "AJ" and does some signs
- loves to play catch with balls and cars on the floor
- always wants to eat with a utensil
- is a real mommy's girl
- She's 22lbs, and about 2'5". She eats twice as much as Aidan does, so she's catching up quickly on weight!