Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Gymnastics Show

Ella's end-of-season gymnastics show was last Thursday. She loved showing off all her moves, and it was so much fun to watch her have such a great time.

 She was moving so much that I didn't get great pictures, but here are a few cute ones.

 During the stretches at the beginning

 Hanging from the trapeze

My absolute favorite - blurry but awesome!

 A bunch of good video clips

Getting her medal at the end, and she was so proud of herself!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Jumping in the pool

Ella started jumping in the deep end of our pool and can swim to the other side by herself.

A video of her newest trick --

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Dance Fun Show

Ella participates in a dance program at school called Dance Fun, and they had a little show last week to show off what they've been learning.

Looking so adorable and ready to dance!

Some videos of a few different songs they danced to

And her favorite part? Getting a trophy at the end!

She was very proud of her trophy, slept with it that night and brought it to school in her backpack the next morning. So cute!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Picture Post

Catching up on some pictures and videos from April and the beginning of May --

Looking so cute on her new princess couch from Grammy with her babies and some animals
A rainy day, and she was excited to take her umbrella to school!

Ella has been asking for fake nails for months and I've always said no because I think a 5-year old has no business wearing fake nails. A few weeks ago, we were at Claire's at the mall, and she saw a pack that had peace signs on them and she just had to have them. They were on clearance and were really cheap, and I figured it may not be a bad idea to let her try them and realize how annoying they are, and hopefully break the mystique and her fixation on them. 

She was so excited that she wanted to get them on right away, so we went to the lobby outside the restrooms and I put them on for her. She loved how they looked and was showing them off to everyone. Our next stop was the shoe store and I asked her to take her shoe off so the guy could measure it. She said "oh no, I can't take my shoes off with these nails!"...so I had to take them off for her. Then when it was time to try on a pair I tried to hand them to her and she said "oh no, I can't put those on with these nails!"...so I put them on for her. The shoe guy told her how great her nails looked and said "but it seems like it's hard for you to do anything with them?" Her reply "Yes - all I can do with these nails is walk!" HA, it was just so funny. Needless to say, the nails only lasted long enough for us to get home, take her to get a picture with them, and then take them off. And fortunately, she hasn't asked for fake nails since :)
Handstands with Brandon on Jake's trampoline
Ready for a morning of gardening
First afternoon in our pool

Giving Cory a bath

Beautiful hibiscus
Steve and Ella made a fort in her bedroom one night
Strawberry picking with Ellie and Katie

She saw this lizard on the side of the house and wanted to get my phone to take a picture

Watering the garden

This is the life!

Sleeping after a big afternoon of swimming

Finished bird feeder project from Grandma and Grandad

Climbing a tree

Wiping down the cabinets - she gets in moods where she is seriously helpful and I take as much advantage of it as I possibly can.

Poor little girl on a sick day a few weeks ago

Celebrating Cory's 12th birthday!

Working on making a scrapbook 
Washing the dishes 

She rinses them and then I load them in the dishwasher

With Brileigh at Spring Fling
At Clear Lake Park

On the times when Ella takes a shower instead of a bath, I wash her hair and then she washes her body and I close the curtain and wait for her..and enjoy the entertainment :)

Coming down the slide at a bounce birthday party

Monday, May 13, 2013

Haircuts for Dogs by Ella

Ella was home sick today from school but was feeling much better after she started on antibiotics so this afternoon she had enough watching Curious Geoge and decided she needed to get moving. She was all fired up because she was feeling better and bored and ready to burn off some energy. I had taken off for the morning but was working in the afternoon so I told her she needed to play by herself for a bit.

She went upstairs and played with Cory for a little while in her room and then gave Cory some treats from the kitchen, and then came and asked me to write a note that said "Haircuts for Dogs" on it. She usually asks me to write words so she can copy them, and I figured she was doing this for her game with Cory. She stayed downstairs this time, and was bustling around in her playroom and the kitchen and told me that she had a surprise to show me and she'd tell me when she was done.

About 10 minutes later she brought the note back in and said I needed to write on it "by Ella" or else no one would no who was doing the haircuts. And then she said "oh - and write 'open today' so they know that I'm open!" I thought this was for some imaginary customers so I said "ah, that's really neat, who is coming to get their dogs haircuts?" and she said completely seriously "our neighbors, once they see the sign."

I told her that I was really excited to see her dog station, but I didn't know if the neighbors would be coming over because they may not know about her services. She said "well let me just put the sign on the door and we'll see if they come."

I realized then that she was completely serious and really hopeful for some customers. It was a mix of heart breaking and heart warming because I didn't want her to be disappointed when no customers showed up, and heart warming that she's just so sweet and adorable that she expects by making a note and taping it to the front door that clients will be ringing our bell for her dog grooming serices.

So she taped the sign to the front door and then was very excited to show off her handiwork.

This is the dog haircut station she had set up - she had gotten all her supplies together and organized them on this table, filled her spray bottle with water and even towels. She told me that she set up the picture of Cory because it would make the other dogs happy when they saw it.

Then, she took me into the kitchen and showed me all the snacks she had set up for the guests who would be coming over. She had bowls, water bottles, crackers and chips, salt and pepper, coffee cream, splenda, peeps and milk all set out for her company. Talk about heart breaking! - - I couldn't even stand her cuteness and just scooped her up and give her a giant hug and told her what a great job she did setting everything up. (I was this close to texting the few neighbors that I know to see if they'd be willing to come over, but my better judgement prevailed).

Unfortunately, the sign on our front door did not do the trick, and no one showed up for her reception or dog grooming, and she kept asking me why no one came. I said that next time we'll need to make sure everyone knows in advance and we can invite them, and hopefully she'll have better luck next time.
She asked if we can make flyers for people's mailboxes, so I'm hoping she'll have forgotten about that idea by tomorrow morning...

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Ocean Beach / Lands End / Sutro Baths / Point Lookout, Chinatown and Pier 39

On Friday we headed out for our last day of sight seeing. We first stopped at Ocean Beach which was just a few minutes from our apartment.

Sand dollars and sea shells in the sand

We drove up to Lands End, which is the furthest point east in the city and looks out over the ocean.
The pool down below is called Sutro Baths, which is the remains of a fancy pool complex that burned down in the 1960s.

We were able to walk down and the kids could explore the remains of the pool house building.

We walked the trail to Point Lookout, and found this neat cave along the way

From the very top we had a great view, and were able to see dolphins swimming in the water! The two spots in the center of this photo are their fins - we watched them swim for a few minutes, it was so neat.

We drove downtown after and ended up in Chinatown again - it was like a magnet just kept bringing us back to Chinatown!

We found this really cool playground right in the middle of this busy urban area, a good play break for the kids.

Then we headed down to Fisherman's Wharf again, this time to Pier 39.

This street performer caught Ella's eye so she went right up to him to investigate. He was doing some type of mime / robot performance and she couldn't tell if it was a real person or a 'real robot.' He did a little act with her, it was so cute.

Neat view of Alcatraz from the pier

And we were able to see the sea lions all resting at Pier 39. Most of them were just laying down resting in the sun, but some of them were so noisy and active, climbing all  over each other, making their big barking noises, and jumping on and off the docks - it was quite a sight.

Friday night was a really special memory for Ella. She had slept in the room with Cayla, Cammi and Gavin in bunks every night, but that night they made a fort and all slept under it. Cammi and Ella slept in her bed, and then Cayla in the other bottom bunk and Gavin on the floor. They stayed up late coloring and talking and being silly, and even managed to sneak some oreos from the kitchen. Ella is still talking about their special sleepover night. 

We were all sad for our vacation to end on Saturday, it was such an incredible week filled with really great memories. Ella is still talking about her time with her cousins and I hope that we are able to see all of them again soon.