Sunday, September 28, 2008

Serena in the closet

This weekend and last we had the luxury of not having too many agenda items which is part keeping it simple and part saving money. Other than church and Julia's soccer we had no other plans. It has been awesome! When we are all at home it is anything but easy since you still need to find things for the girls to do when they are done entertaining themselves. Yesterday, Julia decided to pack for Big Bear mountain. She pulled out every toy in her bedroom and placed them in the living room in her own version of organization. Serena in the mean time moved Julia's items to where she wanted them to go. Julia did not approve. Today, James took Julia to visit his dad and brother and went to play at "pirate" park. Serena and I were left to our own devices. I cleaned a little, read a little, did a bit of homework, cut out paper dolls, made a CD and did some other random things. Serena was playing in her bedroom with Turbo. I setup a game for her and me to play and called her to come. She did not. So of course, I went looking for her. I found her in a random spot, in my closet, sitting on my safe. She was pulling the hangers and clothes off and walking through our closet from one side to the other. Super funny, but a bit messy. I am glad though she found something fun to do.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Road Trip Planning

Friday we are leaving to Big Bear for the weekend with our family and extended family. My parents have invited us to stay with them and Kristi and the Vander Heides for the weekend. It sounds like a blast and I cannot wait to go. Prior to leaving though I have some planning and smart packing to do. Since James has to work on Friday he will be driving up separately a day later, so it is me and the girls and Kristi who will ride together. It will probably take 2.5 hours of driving time to get there. I need games and snacks and distractions for the girls in the car. Luckily with some research I found some ideas.

Moms Minivan is a website with a ton of ideas to keep kids happy and busy while traveling. I will be using several of the ideas such as a scavenger hunt for Julia. Instead of words listed on a paper there is a checklist with pictures instead. This will work great for her since she does not read, yet. On the Microsoft website I found templates for paper dolls. I will be printing and cutting these out this weekend. One other site I found which, too me is a goldmine, is Storynory. This site has many FREE audible stories and you can even download them and burn them to CD. I will also be doing that this weekend in preparation for our trip. Books on tape or Cd's are awesome and Julia loves them. Serena not so much, attention span for this. Hopefully, with these new and hidden jewels (I will not be revealing them until they are in need) and snacks our drive will be much more pleasant and I will be able to avoid some tantrums or at least some, "I'm bored." comments.

Digital scrapbooking

I enjoy photography and scrap booking. I think of myself as a creative person and both of these hobbies bring out my creativity. They only problem is I do not have enough time in the day to partake regularly. It is a shame, too, since they full fill my need to create and also document my families life in pictures and words...I guess blogging does that, sort of. Usually I create hard copy books, but I have taken a stab at digital scrapping since I am sort of a techie and love to hand on my PC. I found out Costco prints digital scrapbook pages which is awesome. They come in 2 sizes, 8x8 and 12x12. Here are a few pages I have created. I welcome all feedback. Thanks. (Click on each page to see the full-size version)

Poor Sports

I am playing on a recreational co-ed soccer team in Newport Beach every Thursday night. My company sponsored our team (there was a $1500 entry fee per team) and pretty much anyone can play. There are three divisions and we are in the lowest and supposed non-competitive division. Boy was I surprised the first game when our team was left in the dust by a more experienced team who have obviously played together before and were very serious. I kept reminding myself to have fun and just kept thinking maybe we were in the wrong division. We're not. Holy cow!. Most people on our team have never played before or some like myself have not played in almost 20 years. We lost and I can't even remember by how much, but we definitely scored no goals.

This past Thursday our team had a real shot to win. We were playing against another corporate team, a CPA firm, and they too had not scored any goals their first 3 games. Yes! The game ended as a tie 4-4. We were happy to take that ending. The part that was sad though were the jerks on the other team. Several guys kept swearing overly loud (children were within earshot) and the refs warned them to stop. Player number 70 was warned and he continued to swear, the ref yellow carded him, then he continued again and the ref red carded him. 70 then proceeded to tell the ref to F*** off. That was it. He was thrown out of the game. The craziness did not end there since the gentleman (yeah, right) threatened the ref who then kicked him off the field. The coach was swearing at the ref, who remained calm the entire time, and other players on their team were freaking out, too. The ironic part was they were winning at the time. Next, another player was thrown out of the game. Let me remind you again, this was division III, co-ed recreational soccer. Gimme a break. We scored another goal since they were 2 men down, but we could not pull out the win. Oh well! I think we won anyways since we remained calm, had fun, and left with our dignity.

Serena Vida?

I am starting this blog to jot down my thoughts and keep a log of all the happenings in my familys life. I used to write in my kids baby books, but that has seemed to stopped since my time is limited. Time will tell whether I keep this up or not. I tend to start a hobby only to overdo it and stop after a while. I am always on my PC since I pay our bills online and attend school online, so why not do a blog online. It is not like I have the time either. With work full-time, school full-time, soccer (for me) on Thursdays', soccer and school for Julia, church, friends, family, why not add another thing on top of it.

Here is the ironic part, James and I have been trying to come up with ways to simplify our hectic lives. So here I am adding one more thing for me to do. I guess there could be worse things and this does only take a few minutes of my time. Serena Vida? I chose to call my blog site Serena Vida after my youngest daughter. In Latin Serena means serene, calm and in Latin vida means life. So going along with my theme of simplifying it all 'Serene Life' it will be.

Serena - 'Calm, serene'