Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas 2011

After going to church we came home and let the kids open their presents.  Aria was more interested in opening packages than actually playing with what was inside, while Zade wasn't interested in opening anything, and was more than happy to just play with the first two toys he got.  Thus, we let Aria open Zade's presents and then she was happy to start playing with her toys too.  It was cute. 

Here a few pics of the kids favorite toys.  Zade got a basketball hoop, since he's always asking to "dunk" whenever he sees a hoop.  

We also got him some more balls, since he loves them.

Aria also got 3 Disney Princess barbies, which kept her entertained for hours.  

Since Aria and Zade both love playing with little coins, we got them a toy cash register.  

Family Party

We got together with Tara's family at her brother Ryan's house and had a party where we celebrated Jerry's birthday.  The kids had a great time chasing each other around his couch.

Everyone had fun hanging out.

On a different day Tara and Shara took the kids to a jungle gym playland.

They also went shopping at Costco and had a great time. 

Tara's dad also took the crew to Olive Garden for lunch.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Family Pics in Reid Park

We decided it was time to get another family picture taken, so Tara called up Alma Lopez (who she knows through Young Womens) and she was kind enough to come with us to Reid Park and take some family pictures for us.  Aria wasn't feeling well and all Zade wanted to do was go run off and play on the playground.  Thus, we're lucky we got any pictures that turned out at all.  Here are a few that we liked.

Christmas fun in Tucson

We went to see Zoo Lights last week as a family.  It was all lit up and even Santa Claus was there.  Unfortunately, it just so happened we went on a night that was raining, which is pretty rare for Tucson.  As we stood in the rain for 20 minutes waiting for Aria and Zade's turn to see him, we began to wonder what in the world we were doing.  Oh well, it made the kids happy.

A few days later we went to our ward's Christmas party and enjoyed the various delicious soups everyone brought.  (They were way better than what you can get at Sweet Tomatoes).  :)  Here's the crew making ginderbread houses at the end.  I'm sure more toppings made it into our tummies than onto the house.

Yesterday we went to Winterhaven again and enjoyed looking at the Christmas lights.  We ran into Ben Hoffman and his family and had fun wandering around the area with them.  Below is a pic of how the kids bundled up to stay warm (although it was only 50 degrees).  :)  We loved the get up that Zade put on:

Below is a short video clip of our favorite house in Winterhaven, which we refer to as the Bellagio.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

We went over to Phil & Amy's for Thanksgiving again this year.  Once again, the food was amazing, and the pies were to die for.  The kids had fun playing together, and the hombres enjoyed watching some football.  

Aria and Phil's daughter Luccee had a great time playing together.

Aria loved jumping on the trampoline.

Zade really liked the little basketball hoop they had outside.  

Zade especially liked dunking the basketball.

Tara has gotten to know Maggie through Young Women's and invited Maggie to come and join us for Thanksgiving.  She and Maggie also had fun doing cartwheels, and back hand springs.

This is my favorite picture.  Although in person, Tara's back hand spring was very graceful, somehow on film it looks like she's fallen right out of the sky onto the tramp.  :)

This picture does a better job of illustrating how nicely she pulled off her back hand springs.

Quirky children

Zade refused to eat his food with a bib, so I had to put one on too.  Even after that, he still wasn't too pleased, but at least he ate.

And here's what I came home to after work this week.  Is it just me, or does Aria sound like Darth Vader?

Sunday, November 20, 2011


Since Tara's marathon was in Santa Barbara, her parents were so kind as to make the trip extra special by taking Aria and Zade (and us) to Disneyland in Anaheim.

As you'd expect, the kids loved it.  Aria got to meet lots of princesses, fairies, and classic Disney characters personally.

One of Aria's favorite rides was "It's a Small World"

Zade loved driving the cars in Toontown.

My favorite ride was the Star Tours ride, which featured characters from Star Wars.  They also had a live stage performance where they selected children from the audience, gave them light sabers, and trained them to fight Darth Vader.

The kids also liked the parade they held at night.

Santa Barbara Marathon

After months of training, Tara finally got to run her 1st marathon in Santa Barbara California.  The weather for the race was a perfect (55-60 degrees fahrenheit), and overcast, and the course had plenty of downhills. Tara's goal was to finish around 4 hours and she did just that, coming in at 4:02.  (She was quite pleased.)  As she was finishing the race, the clouds left and it was a nice, warm sunny day at the beach.  It was pretty sweet.
Tara's parents, Aria, Zade and I waited for her at mile 25 and cheered her on, and I ran the last mile in with her and video taped her.  :)  When Tara finished the race her legs tightened up a ton and she could hardly walk, so for about 20 minutes she was not feeling to hot after she finished, but she went to a massage therapist table and after some professional work, she was feeling good again.

We also went and walked around State St and enjoyed the town.  If the real estate prices in Santa Barbara were not so outrageously high, it would be a perfect place to live.  It's lush, green, sunny, with temperate weather, and a well educated population.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Halloween & Football

On Halloween, Aria's friend Salem came over to our house and went trick-or-treating with Aria and Zade.  We took them through our neighborhood and they got quite a haul.  The kids then had fun manning the front door and handing out candy to all the trick-or-treaters.  Our neighborhood gets so many kids coming through, that we just sit out in front of the house in camping chairs, rather than waiting for the doorbell to ring.  It's a neat experience.

On Saturday, we decided to take the kids out for a special treat at McDonalds and while we were there, a lady sitting next to us offered us 2 tickets to the Arizona vs. Utah football game, since she wouldn't be able to use them.  Since we haven't been to a football game since we moved to Arizona, we took her up on the offer. I took Aria & Zade to the game, and Tara got a chance to relax, which rarely comes.
The kids were great at the game. It was a little loud for Aria's taste, but she made due.  They loved watching the jumbotron screen and eating all the snacks we had.  

The seats we were given were pretty close to the field, so that was fun, however, they were near a lot of Utah fans.  Since Utah was clobbering Arizona, they were always cheering, and Aria kept switching back and forth by rooting for Arizona, and then for Utah.  It was fun.  In the 3rd quarter the kids were ready to go, which was fine by me, since Arizona was starting to get blown out.  We stuck it out until the beginning of the 4th quarter and took the shuttle home.  It was a fun time.  

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Bouncy Balls

The simple pleasures of life.  Aria and Zade love playing with bouncy balls.

Trunk or Treat

We had a trunk or treat activity at the church ballpark again this year, and the kids loved it.  Aria dressed up like a little fairy, and Zade was Superman.  Little Zade's bucket of candy got so full he could hardly carry it.  :)  I couldn't get Zade to say trick or treat, but each time he did get some candy, I was able to get him to say "Tank you".  His high pitched, slurred words sounded sooo cute.  

Here they are with their haul.  Zade is all about suckers, and Aria is a chocolate junkie.  

The next day we went to the Carnival at Aria's pre-school that was being held as a fund raiser.  The kids each got some popcorn, did a bunch of little events, and Aria got a tie-dyed hat.  I volunteered to work a the duck pond where kids went fishing for rubber duckies with large metal spoons.  

That afternoon we went over to the Brimhalls and carved pumpkins.  Tara went for the black cat, and I went for death.  :)