Sunday, June 17, 2012

Asher is Growing Up

Asher graduated pre-school last month. It has been so good for him to be around other kids his age two days a week. It has helped him socially, and the peer pressure has helped him to care a little more about learning. He can write his name, Hallelujah! His teachers were awesome, and his graduation was the best ceremony I have ever attended. It was short and cute and fun. The kids got to slide down a slide when their name was called. And Asher looked so darn cute in his graduation gear.

I don't think I have blogged about any pre-school field trips other than the trip to the farm, but we also visited a fire station, the Phoenix zoo, and had a few fun park days. Asher always made the best crafts, and he was always excited when it was his turn to bring the snack or share a book. Near the end of the year he started worrying about whether his shirts were cool. I am a little bit glad that the school he will be attending next year requires uniforms. But I just cannot believe that he will be in kindergarten.

Since Dan and I are about to go on a cruise and Asher and Gwen are staying with their Aunt Amy for a week, I figured it was time for Asher to take swimming lessons. The house has a pool, and the pool has a gate, but better safe than sorry. (I wanted Gwen to be water safe too, but since she is not potty trained yet she wasn't allowed in the class.) Anyway, Asher was afraid of the water, and now he is not. I took him to 6 days of swimming class and now he can monkey walk, put his head in the water and blow bubbles, jump to people in the pool, and kick in the water. His teacher was so good with him. She knew just what to say and just how hard to push him. I'm proud of him, and I love how proud he is of himself.

We took this trip to Santa Barbara...

The week after I finished that dress, our family took a trip to Santa Barbara. We stayed with Dan's parents and we visited my sister who had just had a beautiful baby boy. He was 5 days old when I held him, and he is such a little love. They named him Jameson Osa Wrenn. My sister said she felt great, and she was walking around looking healthy as can be. I am so amazed at her resilient nature and her boundless energy. If I had a C-section I'm sure I wouldn't be able to walk for a week. The kids loved playing together, both at my sister's house in the mountains and at their grandparent's house. Another great thing about going to visit so close to when the baby was born was that we got to see Billy. He is in the National Forest Service, so he is off fighting fires a lot. This was actually his first time meeting Gwen, and she is 2 1/2 years old! It was fun to have him around.

While in Santa Barbara, we also went to the carousel with the kids. Asher thought it was fun, but Gwen was a little scared. I stayed standing next to her, holding her, and she was fine. We also went to the zoo that day. We had been to the Phoenix zoo twice recently, but the kids loved the Santa Barbara zoo because it is smaller and way less hot. We went on the train with Grandpa, which was fun. We also ate at the Habit, even though we have a Habit near us now.

We went on a date while G&G watched our children. We ate at the Palace Grill, which is probably our favorite restaurant in Santa Barbara. The food is cajun/creole and SO delicious, the atmosphere is fun and reminds me of places I ate in New Orleans, and the service is exceptional. We love that place. We also walked around downtown a little bit. It is both interesting and sad to see it change so much from when we lived there. Certain stores that were fixtures before are no longer there. That's life I guess.

I tried to do some running/jogging even though I forgot my workout shoes. That was a mistake. My shins and ankles hurt for a week afterward. I didn't even run that much, and I finished off my workout with yoga. Moral: don't run without shoes.

Some of my favorite moments of the trip were seeing our kids with their grandparents... playing games with Grandpa, Gwen sleeping in Grandma's arms. I also loved how often Asher played outside. He just opened the side doors and climbed up the treehouse throughout the day. He hates going outside in Arizona (as do I) and I just think that is not healthy. Sometimes I wonder if we are living in the wrong place. We used to be outside all the time when we lived in Santa Barbara. Oh well.

One night we had spaghetti, and Asher was trying to feed Gwen a noodle. She was refusing and protesting as usual, and I said that I would eat the noodle if he wanted. So he gives me one end of the noodle and he puts the other in his mouth, and we both slurped until we kissed. He wanted to have a Lady and the Tramp moment. He is the cutest boy ever.

Before we left for Simi Valley, we went to an awesome park downtown called Kid's World. It was hard to keep track of Asher, he was like a monkey running and climbing all over everything. Gwen was easier to keep track of, because she was a little intimidated by the size of the place. We explored together, and when she found a steering wheel, she said "Look, Mom! I a pirate!" She happily played at that little area for quite some time. My friend Anna met us there with her sweet baby girl Georgiana. I used to walk and talk with Anna all the time when Asher was a baby, and I'm so glad she has a little one of her own now. We walked to her house and hung out with her husband and talked for a little while. I wanted the kids to go to the beach while we were in town, but it didn't work out. The kids were sleeping on the way out of town and Asher just wanted to get to the Murphy's house as soon as possible anyway. He proclaimed "I already know what the beach looks like!" We went out to eat with all the Simi Valley Hixons and stayed with the Murphys. My kids LOVE the Murphys, and the Murphys love them right back. Asher sometimes still asks to go to their house.

So there you have it. I hadn't blogged about it because I haven't had my pictures ready. And I still don't. Maybe I'll add some later, maybe I won't. But I wanted to at least document it before I forget.