A weekend at the beach this past weekend for all of the March birthdays. Jeremy's, Matthew's, Jon's and Dan's birthday were all celebrated at a rental beach house in seaside. Although I took 95+ pictures I feel like I didn't capture the true story of our weekend.
Stage 1: the drive to the beach - Our morning was filled with excitement as we pack up the car with all of our stuff and tell little miss Julia we are going to the beach. Even the dog gets into the car, and boy did this excite her. But, we tried to explain Chewy was going to spend the weekend with Grandma Nancy and Spike. After leaving Chewy behind (sad for me too) Julia was very upset about not having her dog with her for her trip. "Chewy stay home." "Buy new Chewy" (Don't ask about the Buy new phrase...that's a whole other story in it self.) Needless to say Julia was pretty anxious on the car ride to the beach and did not take a nap for the 2 hours we were in the car.
Stage 2: Hang'n out at the beach house - Friday we choose to just hang out at the house, relaxing and settling in. Our family took the apartment that was attached to the side of the house. This giving us some more privacy and Julia her own space for sleeping. Paige and Iris were so excited to play with Julia that the 3 of them ran around the 2 stories of the house all afternoon. They played hide and go seek over and over, then in the art room they colored over and over, and again just palled around together all day.
Stage 3: We must do everything together - The 3 girls were meshed together for everything, and they loved it. During bedtimes they took a bath together in the huge jacuzzi tub and helped washed each other's hair and then brushed their teeth together in front of the giant mirror. They watched movies together and ate together. If 1 sat down on a tall stool at Nana's house, then the other two followed suit. The only time they separated was at bed time.
Stage 4: The shopping - Saturday, after everyone was fed and bathed, we all headed into the heart of Seaside intending to have some shopping fun and Sushi lunch. We started off getting coffee, where Julia read the Fry's Ad for Jon (too funny), and then looking for the best candy shop on the strip. Roxanne was on the hunt for Matthew's Birthday gift and we ended up in a clothing store where a huge sale was going on. We ended up getting new shoes and a t-shirt for Julia. The shoes being size 8 water sandals and the short being a size 5T cat and the hat pink top! So cute! We wondered down into the candy stores then and Julia insisted on someone getting her popcorn, and of course Grandma and Grandpa came to the rescue. At the end of the shops we of course had to ride on the carousel! Julia loves riding the carousel so much and wanted to go again, but was also very hungry. So, we headed to Sushi lunch and waited almost 30 minutes for service and food! But, while waiting Julia and Paige went potty in the public restroom! On the walk back to Nana's Condo we bought Julia and mini Kite and got rained on by the sudden onset of pounding rain showers!
Stage 5: Meat Party - Saturday evening was the planned birthday party dinner. Jon had requested a year ago to have an all meat birthday party, so steak and ribs were cooked for our meat loving family. And since we were at the beach of course we had some crab and shrimp! Our vegan friends, Lin & Ryan even joined in by baking a vegan meatloaf. Dan, Toni, and Brandon brought potato salad and of course chocolate cake and red velvet cupcakes for desert. I had to make a huge salad for us leaf eaters too.
Stage 6: The beach- after our meat dinner we took all the kids to walk on the near by bay, but the whole beach area was covered in rocks and it was dark by the time we made it there. So, we insisted on major beach time the next day! After packing up the house Sunday morning we headed to Nana's condo and Jon, Julia, and I made a dash to the beach before the others. It was pretty cold still, so we walked up to the water and then Julia wanted to go in. But, just as we were turning around to go in the police horses were walking down the beach towards us. Of course Julia and I were super excited at the idea of petting the horse. This would be her first time seeing a horse close up! The horse had the best personality too, very curious about what we had in our hands and kept sniffing at her like she smelled like food (she probably did!). We met the others back at the condo and then made plans to go to the Aquarium and fly kites on the beach. Paige wanted to fly her new Tinkerbell kite and Julia wanted to fly her Rex kit.
Stage 7: The Aquarium - Jon, Matthew, and I took all 3 girls into the aquarium while Amber hung outside (the prices were high). We got some fish food to give to the sea lions and the girls were giddy with delight over the hungry sea lions. We walked around and looked at all the fish and the giant octopus, and Julia and Iris even touched starfish and a sea cucumber. Paige clung to me the whole time (we think she was scared) and wasn't too interested in anything to do with the aquarium. A coloring station for the kids was at the end, and the girls all colored a pictures they had out. Of course we then ran out to the beach!
Stage 8: The Wave - After attempting to fly the kites in a very mild wind unsuccessfully we began to walk towards the water. Julia lead the pack with Grandpa and found a stick to draw in the sand with. Us adults hung back and let the kids run around each other. Then all the kids and Grandpa began to jump and run from waves. The last wave that came seemed faster then others apparently and Julia ended up face planting into a wave and lots of wet sand; soaking herself and Daddy (who picked her up and ran back to the condo). I ran behind and as we came in I stripped Julia down and did a quick bath/wash down.
Stage 9: The End - after all the excitement of falling in the ocean Jon and I were done and ready to head home. Julia of course wasn't, but soon after leaving Seaside she was fast asleep in the car and didn't wake up until we reached Grandma Nancy's house to pick up Chewy. (All due to 2 days of staying up late and not taking naps.) We got home late, had a fast food dinner, and unpacked our sandy adventures.
Stage 10: Potty Training - With Paige and Julia being so close in age of course they are working on the same milestones around the same time. Right now they are working on potty training, and Grandma brought along the tavel potty chair. Each time one of the two went potty the other did too, and it was amazing to watch the two of them be so successful in a new environment. Julia came home and stayed right on track and continued to use the potty all day long after the trip. It seems like spending the weekend with her cousins made her grow leaps and bounds in development.