Monday, May 30, 2016

Mount Tam on Memorial Day

We made plans with T's work buddy to go hiking. We decided on Mount Tamalpais in the North Bay. We also decided to go early in the morning to avoid holiday traffic / get a parking spot. We left the house at 7:20 (go us!) to get to the parking lot before 9. I was a worried about the drive because our girls aren't known for their road tripping skills (still). Luckily they were both happy the entire 1.5 hours there! There was a lot of fog and no traffic. This should be a great view of the ocean. Still a great view.

The other family has two girls whose ages match up (they are slightly older) with our Pippa and Roxy's ages. I used to not understand why you would ever do vacation with another family - it's hard to coordinate and you don't have as much flexibility, but I've since changed my mind. Pippa hiked all 2 miles (not a super long hike, but when you're 3 it's kind of a lot) since she had a friend to run and climb with. I know if it had just been our little family she would have asked to be carried .25 miles in.

We did a 1.5 mile loop then a steep / rocky .3 miles (.6 miles there and back) to the top of Mount Tam. A snack break with our little climbing mountain goats. The big girls really got high up!

View along the trail. Just right of the exact center of this photo you can see the tops of the buildings in San Francisco.

The view looking the other way.

The loop was easy and mostly flat. Our friend's two year old walked the whole way. Roxy was in our new hiking backpack for the entire way.

The .3 mile up to the top was kind of rough and very rocky. SO glad Roxy was in the carrier. We hung out at the top for a long time. I don't think we actually took any photos of the view at the top... But there were lots of great rocks for climbing.

You can't tell in these photos, but the girls actually had to climb far up the rocks to get here.

Ah, one from the very top.

We wanted to take a family photo at the very top, but Roxy was freaking out and would not consent to be held or moved. So we knew it was time to go back down. About 10 steps after we started down Pippa lost a special purple rock she found at the top. Tears commenced and didn't stop until we were back in the parking lot. Roxy fell asleep on the .3 miles back down.

Zero bug bites, zero sunburns, and missed all the holiday traffic (which we saw heading the other direction as we were leaving). It was a good trip! Roxy slept through the transition to the car seat and woke when we stopped for In N Out on the way home. Pippa slept after In N Out until we got home. So another good car ride! Unbelievable! Not that we're planning any road trips any time soon (Roxy still sometimes screams the whole way for a 15 minute trip) but it seems they are getting a bit better.

Our friend took some photos so if we get them we'll toss them up here, too.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Quiet time

Around January Pippa started not being tired at nap time. I pushed her nap time back and at first I was super bummed because the girls weren't napping at the same time anymore (aka I wasn't getting to nap and when you're in the first trimester and also have bronchitis you really want to nap all the time). Then Pippa started fighting the later nap so we switched to quiet time.

Quiet time for Pippa is the same time as Roxy's nap. Pippa doesn't have to nap, but she has to stay in her room and be quiet until her bunny is awake. (She has a bunny clock that shows a sleeping bunny when she needs to be asleep and the picture switches to a running bunny when it is ok to be awake / out of her room.) I mostly close the curtains and she chooses toys and books to have in her room (normally toys and books live in the playroom). We started with quiet time being 30 minutes and are now up to about 50 minutes. The first two weeks she would pop out, but now she stays in her room. A good incentive for her is that if she stays in her room for all of quiet time (she can come out if she needs the bathroom) she gets to watch 20 minutes of a movie after. And Roxy is still napping while Pippa watches the movie so I get a bit more quiet time for me, too!

Sometimes (about twice a week) she falls asleep during quiet time. Sometimes she tells me she wants a nap instead of quiet time and that's fine, too. I don't let her sleep past when quiet time is over, though or else bedtime is late. A nice perk (for me) of dropping the nap is that Pippa's bedtime is 7!

Usually Pippa runs out of her room when the bunny wakes up (aka quiet time is over) and tells me she stayed in her room the whole time! When the time comes and goes I go check on her. Sometimes she's absorbed in playing, but mostly it means she fell asleep at some point. Here's what I've discovered a few times: 

I love that sometimes when Pippa sleeps she takes up the whole bed and other times, like this, she's curled in to just a tiny ball on the corner of the bed.

Love that girl and love quiet time!

Roxy sleeping

And some of Roxy sleeping because all babies are cute when they are sleeping.

If Roxy wakes before 7 a.m. we usually pull her into bed with us and she will happily snuggle us for about 20-30 more minutes. Here she is morning snuggling with T (and sucking his finger because we couldn't find a binky - we've since broken her habit of sucking our fingers).

While Pippa was brushing her teeth for bed, Roxy hopped into Pippa's bed and pretended to be asleep. 

And this one of T immediately after Roxy woke him.  He fell asleep playing with the girls. One of the reasons I love this picture is because Roxy looks so much like Pippa at the same age.


Our new house has a covered patio. I've never thought about having a covered patio (just a roof over it, not screened in) before, but now it's definitely on my forever house wish list.  Anyway, back in March we bought a $30 kiddie swing to hang from the ceiling of the patio.

Pippa loves it. Roxy just loves to push it (ending 50% of the time with the swing bonking her in the head). Pippa doesn't always like Roxy pushing her because the pushes aren't big enough.


So I got out the baby jumper and Roxy pushes that. Roxy likes it because it's more her height and I like it because less whining plus it never hits her in the head. They both like pushing dolls / animals in the swings.

Two days ago Roxy asked to go in the swing. Amazing. Before this she would scream and kick if you even tried to put her in the swing (she doesn't like the swings at the park either - I have wondered for a long time (since she was an infant and hated car rides (and still does))if maybe she has a motion sickness thing, but that's a thing for another time). So this was her first time in the swing.
She absolutely did not want to be pushed at all by me or Pippa. But she was fine (and occasionally smiley) just sitting there.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

First Pigtails

I usually don't do anything with Roxy's hair other than wet / brush / scrunch it for her curlies. Sometimes we do hair bows to get her bangs out of her face. Today I asked Pippa how she wanted her hair done and Pippa said, "Pigtails. No... braids." Then Roxy said, "Pigtails, me!" So pigtails we did. She only kept the pigtails in for about an hour, but it was fun while it lasted. 

Now way too many photos of first pigtails: 

She really wanted to comb those pigtails.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Berry picking

Today we went berry picking with friends in Brentwood. It's "a thing" to do in the Bay Area. We picked cherries, blackberries, olallieberries (first time I've heard of these - they were delicious), and logan (?) berries. Unfortunately we went on the hottest day of the year so far.

 The girls liked picking berries the best.

As you can see Roxy sampled some. (Okay, we all did. She was just a bit messier about it.)

There were plenty of low branches for the kids. And we kept the kids far away from the trees that had ladders next to them. 

Roxy didn't pick a single cherry. Not her thing. You do you, babe.

You can't tell since this photo is far away, but the three youngest all have berry stained mouths. :)

Our friends were talking about visiting other farms to pick peaches and strawberries, but I was so hot and done. We left and I took the girls to McDonald's for ice cream and chicken nuggets and air conditioning. Still, it was a good time.  

Saturday, May 14, 2016


The closets in our new house are double sliding door closets. This is the same kind of closet doors that was in the girls bedrooms at the old house. Except at the old house the doors were light and slid easily. These doors are heavy and require real pushing to get them to move. Consequently, pinched and smashed fingers are not uncommon.

We decided to take down the sliding doors and put up curtains instead. For Roxy's closet we just used a white fabric shower curtain (clean and almost new) that we already had on hand. It's a bit short, but it was our favorite price of free, plus Roxy doesn't care at all. Done.

I found this super cute flamingo fabric for Pippa's room. And I decided to sew curtains with said flamingo fabric. Because really, sewing four straight lines is totally a perfect beginner project.

I'm not crafty. The last thing I sewed was a backpack in home ec in 7th grade. But there have been many times the last 5 years when I wished I had a sewing machine - not to do like serious sewing, but just to quickly do something. Like sewing Christmas stockings for our family (borrowed a sewing machine) or making curtains for the playroom in the old house (used double sided tape - these curtains are now the window curtains in Roxy's room) or a few other things. Anyway, I bought a cheap sewing machine online and off I went!

Well, not quite. When I finally had time to sew them I pulled the fabric out and the girl at the fabric counter had shorted me by over 1 yard! I knew I had told her the right measurements (because I measured and calculated it literally 5 times). I didn't actually watch her measure or cut the fabric because I was trying to keep track of Roxy and Pippa. I called my mom and asked how hard it would be to add a ruffle or something at the bottom and she told me to take the fabric back and ask them to re-cut it correctly. So I did. And they did. Thanks, mom!

I knew going into this that these would not be perfect curtains. I'm a beginner and I should let myself be a beginner (and probably stay a beginner - like I mentioned I don't want to be a serious sewer or crafter). Plus, it's going in a three year old's room. She's not going to notice or say something if it's not perfect. One time a really crafty woman in our old ward said something like, "I don't try to make it perfect. If I spent forever making it perfect then when it's done I notice one small thing that's slightly off I would want to scream. So on most things I just do a mostly good job and then I'm happy with the outcome." Some of the best advice I've ever received.

After all that talking here is how they turned out:

I think it would have looked slightly better if we let them touch all the way to the floor, but we hung them just above the floor so the girls couldn't step on them at all.

The girls with the dowls that we used to hang the curtains. They look like little ninjas or something. And they wielded the dowls like little ninjas, too!

And this one just because it's fun and taken the same day (also, the same day as the flower crown).