Friday, July 31, 2009

Wasabi Shots

Fenima, Eleanor, me, Mica, Leah, Tonya, Adrienne, and Emily

We celebrated Emily's belated birthday at Momoyama Sushi in Concord.
Great Food, Great Friends, Great Times.

Adrienne said she'd eat whatever Emily told her to, so they had a little Wasabi contest.

Everyone knows I am not a fan of spicy food, but I am always up for a good dare and Mica was a fun accomplice. This was hot wasabi!

After we sang Happy Birthday to Emily, the waitress brought over some kind of bean ice of course Tonya and Emily immediately mixed in some Wasabi. They said it was good and we all decided to take their word for it. Happy Birthday, Em. Thanks for the fun time, ladies!

The Sexy Roll, The Dragon Roll, and The Crispy Cobra Roll
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Thursday, July 30, 2009

Does this happen to you?

Have you ever noticed that when you turn your head upside down, you face falls up? Try it. Now for a real scare, hold a mirror under your face while its hanging. Do you look like a really old person...or is it just me?

Monday, July 27, 2009

Mini Golf

This has been a crazy summer with the kids scattered for the past several weeks. When the girls were gone, I took Ryan, and Andy, and his friend mini golfing in Antioch. It took us a while to find the place, but Golf n Games was a great little course and we even got a few hole in ones. Ryan prefers to swing the golf club like a baseball bat, including windup, and nearly took our heads of one time! The boys had a great time playing games in the arcade after our golf game...and yes, I enjoyed a few games of my favorite: old fashioned Skee Ball.
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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Alameda County Fair

Last week I took the kids to the Alameda County Fair at the Pleasanton Fairgrounds. I forgot how much I love the county fair! We went the first few years we lived here but then I kind of forgot about it. Ryan really didn't want to go and was saved by a phone call about 15 minutes before we were leaving. His friend invited him to play for the day, so he was spared being dragged through the winding halls full of great finds. Although he really was upset when he learned that he had missed out on Dippin' Dots!
We loved the horse racing and spent the day browsing at all of the things we couldn't live without (a monocular for Andy, sparkly makeup for Alaina and her friend, nail polish pens for Becca, and kitchen gadgets for me, yes, I am still a gadget gal). Luckily the kitchen demos had tons of free giveaways and we all won some. We looked at all of the county projects and decided to enter something next year...any suggestions? I bought several birthday presents and left behind the $1,500 swing that I really didn't need. We already can't wait for next year.

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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

San Francisco Fun

Dave gave me a really nice watch for my birthday. So nice that I will probably be wearing it for the next 20 years. So nice that I really wanted to love it. So, I asked him if he loved it or just picked it out because it was there. It was really close to what I wanted, and I would have been very happy to keep it if he wanted me to, but he said it didn't matter and he wanted me to be happy with it for a very long, I did the unthinkable and returned it...only after I did lots of research and found exactly what I wanted for four digits less!

So, I went to San Francisco to buy the watch and then I picked Dave up and we had a fun lunch date. We have sadly never done that and it was great. We went to North Beach and ate at Pantarei...the best pasta ever! Really, better than Venice. As we finished eating, we noticed Ciocoletti, a shop across the street. Now, I don't speak Italian, but doesn't that sound an awful lot like
Of course we went to investigate and discovered a wonderful candy store. I love the combination of Hot Tamales and Ghiradelli Milk Chocolate, and chocolate coverered cinnamon bears were on my list of things I'd been wanting to try, so that was my choice for dessert. They were TERRIBLE! Dave made a more sensible, safe choice. Something like coconut peanut brittle or something like that. He just had a small bite and saved the rest for later. Who does that? The shop was great and gave us free fudge samples and a free bag of yummy caramel corn. They have lots of funny gag things too, like a funny little squirrel wearing that nearly made me cry, for laughing so hard. That one may make an appearance at the cookie swap.
San Francisco has it all!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

We Love Candy!!

The kids had worked really hard on cleaning out their books and moving logs in the yard, so I printed certificates from Powell's Sweet Shop and we went to redeem them. YUM! If you haven't been, you should go. Now. It is the most delicious smelling place in the world and they have the old Charlie and the Chocolate Factory playing all the the new technicolor. They have every candy you craved as a kid and can't find anymore...think Zotz and Ice Cubes! It's not cheap, but totally worth if for a speacial occasion. Click on this link for more information on their great reward program. Free candy!
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Not Exactly What I Had in Mind

A few weeks ago, I asked the kids to clean out their bookshelves and a few hall cupboards that were jammed full of books. I went to the gym and this is what I came home to! They had dumped everything out and made some piles (which, in fairness, I'd asked them to do) but then went out to play and left a ginormous mess! We got everything sorted and cleaned up and now they have room for new books. What do I do with all of their old ones? Books for the Barrios? Anyone need books for a young classroom?
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Thursday, July 9, 2009

Fourth Of July 2009

Traditions, traditions. I always try to make traditions with my family, but it rarely works. It seems like someone is usually tired of doing the same thing each year, or we all get lazy and just stay home...but I think we finally have created a Fourth of July tradition that has stuck! We start with the Pleasant Hill Parade, just a small, down home type of parade, that we can bring our dog to. Then we have a BBQ and pool party in the afternoon and in the evening we head off to the DVC parking lot to enjoy fireworks with friends. This year Andy brought a friend and we met up with the Clements' and Evans'. The view is always great and you can see several displays from different places. The kids love it there because it isn't too loud and Dave and I love it there because it's not as crowded or far away as the San Ramon fireworks show we used to go to. I am proud to be an American!!

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Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Birthday Week

Every year I start prepping the kids a few weeks before my birthday. I tell them about my friend who has 5 boys that do "birthday month" and how her family celebrates her birthday for the entire month. And we talk about the importance of recognizing people and being grateful. I just want them to learn to appreciate others...not only me.

Well, this year I had a birthday week!

Robin, Me, Shelley, Angela, Mica, Sarah at 1515 Lounge. Yum!

Oh, how I love crab cakes!

Monday some of my great friends took me to lunch, then Dave and the kids took me out for a family dinner.

I got a two-fer! Lunch and dinner kitchen duties! Me and my family.

On Tuesday, Andy made a brownie birthday cake and the kids lit candles and sang to me. Then on Wednesday night Dave took me to Benihana in San Francisco and to see Spamalot. We loved it! There were a few fairly irreverent scenes, but for the most part it was really funny. John O'Hurley was great. Thanks, everyone, for helping me have a great birthday!

I have a great husband and family!

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Not to Worry

Every summer I try mightily to get the kids involved in things around the house so they'll learn how to do stuff. Part of this effort includes taking turns with dinner plannning and preparing because I really want the kids to know how to make some meals and be a little more self sufficient.
So, each of us has a night we are in charge of and Friday is "clean out the fridge" night, which is great because if Dave and I go out, the kids already have dinner ready!
There are just a few rules: they can't make the same thing two weeks in a row, nothing can be repeated in the same week, and the meal has to include something that grows in the ground.
On Ryan's first night he chose steak and pasta. He really helped marinate and grill the steak and he made the pasta and veggies by himself. He set the table and cleaned everything up. I was thinking about how my baby is growing up so fast...until I saw him stick the pasta noodles up his nose and get all the kids in hysterical giggles. Back to reality!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Sun Village Resort and Spa: June 20, 2009

After everyone else left, Alaina, Becca, Ryan and I went with my parents for one night to a really great all inclusive resort called Sun Village in Puerto Plata. Since we didn't have much time there, we left our bags with the concierge, changed into our swimsuits, and spent the day at the pools, waterslide, and all you can eat buffet. The kids were loving the free flowing virgin coladas and dacquiris again.
The kids took a break while we checked in, then we played Sets after we were sunned out.
My parents have always been wonderful grandparents to my kids and I love watching them play together since we don't get to see them often enough.

Alaina, Ryan, me, Becca...just missing Dave and Andy, who'd already gone back to California.
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