week in review

Would you like fries with that?

Monday morning we sent Bailey off to another week of scout camp. This is the National Youth Leadership Training [NYLT Silver Bear] camp for the boys.

So it's been a quiet week. :) The silence ends tomorrow night.

Been doing LOTS of swimming. We are Fish, after all.

And the flower garden is still going strong. The ants appear to like the flowers as much as I do, so I had to organize a massive ant extermination. So far so good.

I had fun re-organizing our family picture wall to incorporate our newest family picture. I have so much fun with black and white photographs.

Next photo project: filling up two collage frames with fun family photos. Now I just need to find a good place to hang them . . .


buddy's big 4

Summer birthdays at our house are the best! We have cake and ice cream for breakfast, to start the day off right, and then have presents right after. I got up early this morning to finish frosting Collin's cake before he woke up. And not a minute too soon, either! I had just gotten the last candle into place when Collin came downstairs, thrilled to see his Kung Fu Panda cake. I couldn't resist taking a picture right away-that's why he looks so sleepy here.

Time to make a wish and blow out the candles.

Nothing says happy birthday like a brand new red scooter! Finally, a way to keep up with those big sisters and brother around the backyard and cul-de-sac . . .

Collin in action in the backyard. Next stop: the front yard, but definitely with the helmet!

Happy 4th Birthday, Collin!


family picture

The Fish Family
July 2008


twilight brain

Anyone? Anyone?

Yeah. Thought so.


memory game

Everyone needs to play--this is fun!

The rules:

  • First, as a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I had together. It doesn't matter if you knew me a little or a lot, anything you remember--it can be funny, weird, awkward, random, etc.

  • Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. It's actually pretty funny to see the responses. If you leave a memory about me, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave one about you.


a crazy collinism

As the youngest of four children, Collin is constantly being told not to do things that are perfectly acceptable for his older siblings to do. Like using a knife at dinner. I don't put a knife by his place setting because frankly he isn't able to use it well enough to even bother, and I didn't want him to injure himself while sawing away at something. I didn't realize how much Collin was actually paying attention to my dinner table admonitions until the following incident occurred while dining out at a restaurant.

We are being seated at our table, which has a knife and two forks rolled up into the napkins at each seat. As we are getting settled in, I notice that Collin has unwrapped his silverware from the napkin and is staring at his utensils. Suddenly, he picks up his dinner knife and wields it proudly while exclaiming, "Mom, LOOK! It didn't kill me!"

I don't remember telling him that the butter knife might actually kill him, but apparently whatever I said made a pretty big impression!


more photographs from the great escape

Bailey & Libby boogie board together . . .

. . . while Collin enjoys the sun & surf at Avila

Collin makes a friend at the Coastal Discovery Center in San Simeon

Searching for sea treasures . . .

. . . and rock climbing at Morro Strand

Collin takes a break to enjoy the view

Climbing the cliffs at Spooner's Cove in Montana de Oro

Feeding the animals at Avila Barn


scuba scouts

Yesterday our scouts met at the indoor poor at Sports Chalet to complete their scuba training for the Boy Scout Scuba patch. Owen had been scuba certified back when he was a Boy Scout, so he was anxious to get a refresher course in. They had a blast!! [Bailey is towards the back, to the right of my hang-tenning husband. Click on the picture to see it larger!] Next stop: open sea dive!
We are so lucky to have such a great scoutmaster-he really keeps the fun stuff coming for these boys and does a great job motivating them to learn as much as they possibly can in the scouting program. Just in the last month or so, Bailey has done his swimming merit badge, his snorkeling patch, Boy Scout camp with its attendant merit badges, and some other camp-outs and service projects. During camp he passed his Board of Review for his Life Scout rank, so now it's onward to Eagle! I was glad that he had his last Board of Review with someone other than his dad and mom [assistant scoutmaster and troop committee chair, respectively] so that he could have some experience interviewing with different members of scouting staff. I guess they're pretty tough on those Eagle Boards of Review. He's pondering possibilities for his Eagle project now. So exciting!


the great escape

At the Baywood Park pier/boardwalk. All 20 feet of it!

Exploring tidepools by the breakwater along Morro Rock.

Beachcombing along Morro Strand.

Last week we escaped the valley heat and headed to California's central coast. What a relief! Some pictures I took of the kids together.


4th of july 2008

A birthday girl, swimming with cousins @ Grammie's, berry 'n cream cheese frosting cake, and fireworks in our cul-de-sac.

Another great Independence Day with all our favorite family traditions!

independence day



the par-tay

Are all these candles really for me?
Why on earth did my silly mother try to fit them
all on this tiny little gluten-free cupcake?

The girls gather around as Libby opens her birthday gifts.

The gang gathered together in the pool.

It was a great day to swim! A special thanks to Grammie for letting us crash her backyard for the birthday party! Libby celebrated entering double digits with a splash. Of course, her real birthday isn't until the 4th of July. So, we'll be celebrating again as a family! And naturally we're making her wait until then to get her presents from us. And naturally she totally can't wait.


miss libby

Libby grinding corn for homemade tortillas during La Purisima Mission Days.

My group at the La Purisima Concepcion Mission in Lompoc, CA.

Libby at the Millionaire's Club party for 4th grade [dinner portion of the evening]

Libby with her flute, also the same flute my sister & I played! We're getting our money's worth out of it.

You may have noticed that recently I had an almost two-month gap between blog entries. This gap was caused by many varied and sundry reasons: school field trips, school papers and projects, boy scout meetings and camp prep, PTA meetings, 7th grade parent meetings, school volunteer work, last week of school festivities, an extremely sick 7th grader who missed the entire last week of school, and, the bane of my summer, the assignment of PTA Fundraising Walkathon Committee Chair. ***Sigh*** It's been busy.

So, I have made it my mission to [slowly] fill in some of the gaps by updating you on some of the highlights. And this entry is devoted to my Libby!

Libby has had an extraordinary 4th grade year at her new school. She earned straight A's again, much to the delight of her family. She has worked so hard and we are all so proud of her efforts!

Libby also received a letter from her music teacher stating that she has been accepted into the school's Advanced Band class next year. This is quite an achievement, since not many 5th graders get into Advanced Band, so we are all very pleased. She will be learning the same music Bailey is playing [only for flute] and will also be marching in all band competitions next fall, including the band review in Pismo Beach. Go Libby! I'm still trying to figure out how those huge band uniforms are going to fit her.

This week she is attending a Summer Music Workshop in the morning for 5th - 8th graders and is enjoying the challenge. She is learning new notes and new music and will get to perform this Friday night in a concert for the families. We are looking forward to it! Meanwhile, she is still keeping up her piano studies and is advancing in this area as well.

Before school let out for the summer, Libby was invited to a very special "Millionaire's Club" activity put on by all of the fourth grade teachers. In order to be invited, you had to have read at least one million words over the course of the school year. Libby read somewhere between four and five million. It started after school with a Wii competition, then they repaired to a special Millionaire Clubhouse. While at the Clubhouse, they swam, played pool [or billiards, for all you other millionaires], and were served a very special dinner complete with Martinelli's sparkling cider. Just perfect for the junior millionaire set! Libby had lots of fun and played so hard that she was very tired when I picked her up that evening! I think all of the other kids were as well.

I should have some fun pictures of Libby after this weekend when we have her swimming birthday party. Her birthday is actually July 4th, so we're doing it a week early. And hopefully we'll have fun 4th of July pictures to share as well!


the big "1-3"

As of yesterday, June 19th, two things have become official around our place.

What is the first, you query? Well, we now have a bona fide teenager in the house. Although he is not literally in the house at this moment, as the aforementioned teenager has been away at scout camp with his dad for the week.

And the second? I am now officially old. Huh. I had a feeling it would happen.

We celebrated Bailey's birthday before the guys left for scout camp last Saturday, and I think Bailey was pretty surprised. He had been asking for a particular Nintendo DS game, which he has been wanting for awhile.

Here's the birthday boy with his much-coveted Legend of Zelda game. He's all about the Zelda.

But wait, is there something else in the bag?

Seriously, people? Are you kidding me?

I don't have to borrow my sister's or my mom's DS anymore! Suh-weet!
And the birthday boy en route to give his camera-holding mom a heartfelt thank-you hug.

I so love surprising them! He's been wanting one forever, but I'd been reluctant to drop well over a C note for a handheld gaming system [Libby actually bought a used one with her own money several months ago, and mine was a gift]. I figured you only become a teenager once. And thank goodness for that.