Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Good Bye Summer

As much as I love the changing colors of the leaves and light jacket weather, I'm dreading the coming cold and snow which means I'm trapped inside until next summer (thank goodness for hot chocolate and snowsuits). The colder it gets the more I daydream about our very warm and adventurous summer. Not only were we blessed to go to Hawaii and Canada this year and have Tau's family come out for Noa's birthday, but we also got to go out to California to see our niece, Taylor, get baptized, and to top it all off our friends invited us to stay on their house boat at Lake Powell. If you care to reminisce with me here are some pictures to keep you warm for the approaching cold months. You should be able to click on the pictures to enlarge them.

California Trip:

Road Trip! So for Noa's first road trip, we decided to take him on a 10 hour drive to California. Just in case he (meaning we) didn't survive, we stopped and stayed in Las Vegas for two days.

Viva Las Vegas!

The first night we just got to the hotel and crashed, but the next day we went to town. Noa was fascinated with all the lights and sounds. He really liked the glass thingys in the above picture.

We wore the poor kid out, but through it all he stayed a happy baby. At night we took him to see the water show at the Bellagio. I thought he would really like it, but when ever the water shot up he screamed and cried. Oh well, he'll appreciate it when he's older.

I love Las Vegas shows, especially Cirque du Soleil so I made Tau go to a timeshare thing with me so we could get this trip for free. That was before we had Noa so the only show we could see with him was Tournament of Kings at the Excalibur. I had seen it before, so it was fun for me to watch Tau's and Noa's reactions. We were put on the bad guys team and we kept cheering for him to beat all the good guys. Tau got so into it (booing and hissing), I couldn't help but laugh and Noa just looked at us both with a confused look. I was surprised that Noa didn't get scared with all the pyrotechnics and fighting. I am usually only silly with Tau and Noa at home, but here we went crazy and I didn't have a self-conscious bone in my body. The food was horrible, the show ok for Vegas standards, but it was so much fun, definitely a good memory for me.

When we got to California, my Aunt Karen and Uncle Robert kindly let us stay at their house. Sadly I never got a picture with them, but I am so grateful for their hospitality. We couldn't have made the trip without their help.

We didn't get to see them very much since we were with Tau's family most of the time, but we did get one night where my sister, her hubby, my cousin Mark, his wife Erin, and their kids came over to have dinner and games.

My Aunt made the best tacos, which I stole the recipe for and make all the time now, and Noa had a blast playing with his cousins. They are definitely not a shy bunch and kept making him laugh the whole night.

I think he liked being around a bunch of boys since he's got only girl cousins close to his age at home. It was a really fun night and I was happy to see how much Mark's little family has grown and what a good group of kids they are. I hope Noa is as friendly and welcoming of others as they were to him.

Beach day!

Of course you can't go to Cali without going to the beach. Here's Noa making sure he stayed hydrated the whole day.

The last time Noa saw the ocean was in Hawaii and he cried every time the waves came towards him, but this trip he couldn't get long as his daddy was holding him...

Probably because I took him out when Tau wasn't watching. I am totally afraid of water, especially the ocean, and holding Noa, you know I didn't go very deep, but this freak wave came up behind me and I knew I couldn't jump over it. I braced myself and held tight to Noa. The wave hit so hard, I was doing somersaults and all I had of Noa was his little arm which I could feel spinning like we were trapped in a washer machine. I finally felt the sand and stood up. Poor Noa was so scared he didn't even cry. I jumped up, looked around to see if anyone saw us and ran back up to the chairs. We didn't get in the water the rest of the day, but that didn't stop Noa from enjoying the sand.

Yes, Noa has his face in the sand. It kept falling out of his hands when he tried to eat it so he decided to go right for the source. We had some pretty awesome diapers after the trips to the beach. Yummy

The crew at Dave and Buster's. I think the big boys had more fun than the kiddos in the arcade. That is a sight to see, believe me.

Our last night we went to the outlets and watched the fireworks from Lego Land. It was a wonderful trip. And I can't forget to mention the reason we went out... Taylor's baptism was very nice and they had such a wonderful program for her special day. I was so proud of her. She has such a sweet spirit and is always looking for ways to put a smile on others faces. We were so glad we were invited and got to share the day with her.

Noa is the best road tripper ever! I don't know how he'll be when he's older but for now, I would take him anywhere. We took on the full 10 hours on the way back and only stopped for gas. The only problem is that he is so good that we forgot to stop and change his diapers any other time so he and his chair usually ended up soaked at our gas stops. Even with two pairs of clothes in the diaper bag he still ended up in just his diaper by the end of the trip. Don't worry we have learned from our mistakes and remember to stop frequently now.

Lake Powell:

Our friends the Stroshine's invited us to stay on their parents house boat for a few days. It was amazing. I had no idea what a house boat looked like, it's literally a house that floats. And this was a beautiful house. There were three levels, the living quarters (kitchen, living room, bedrooms) were on the first level. The second level was for hanging out, I guess, it had another kitchen, living area, and the captains chair. The third level was for sunbathing, feeling the wind in your hair and of course the totally awesome water slide.

We stayed at the docks for a few days until Captain Scott came and took us out on the lake. We anchored on some rocks and our friends taught us how to jet ski, surf, and wakeboard.

Tau and I ended up drinking more of the lake than we wanted to, but we finally got up on the surf boards. You literally surf on the wave that the boat makes in the water. It is so fun. Tau was a pro at it.

I was too afraid to drive by myself so Heather always came out with me. She has been doing this for years and so at one time she had me hop on the other jet ski and she showed us how to do donuts. She said she and her sister would have competitions to see how long it took them to throw each other off the back. So much fun.

Every night they had a theme for dinner and would decorate the boat and everyone would dress up. We had to leave early so we only got to see pirate night, but it was pretty cool. Tau didn't know you had to wear the costume the whole time you ate so he kept eating the hair in his wig and Rob had a wool hat on that kept him pretty sweaty. I couldn't help but laugh at them.

This was our first time to Lake Powell. We have driven over the bridge that passes it, but that's it. What a beautiful place. I think God made places like this so that we would remember Him and know that He's there for us. How can you not, when you are surrounded by so much beauty. It is so peaceful.

On our last day we took Noa out again on the jet skiis. He fell asleep the last time when he was in the middle so this time we put him up front, but it didn't work. I don't know if it's because of the shear terror or the wind in his face, but he was out. It was pretty cute. Even on the ski boats he would just burrow into my chest and fall asleep. It was a great trip and ending to our very crazy summer. We will miss the warmth and Noa already misses running around in just his diaper, but we are ready to face the snow and make memories with hot chocolate and sleds. Woohoo!