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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Cabo '08

In 1997, Cole was 5 months old and my m.i.l., Carol, took us on vacation to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Both of Dave's brothers (he's the middle of three sons) and their wives (we were all newlyweds) shacked up in the family's two bedroom time share at the Pueblo Bonito Blanco on Playa Medrano. We had a ball, and a tradition was born. We've gone down every November (except one) since then. There are now nine cousins, and we have long since outgrown our two bedroom place (we need three suites, now). But we are all totally committed to getting ourselves and our kiddos down there every year for a week of sun, surf, and priceless family time. Here are some pics of this year's trip to Cabo.

Soli had a blast in the surf with her sissy.

Now that's a good lookin' group of hotties!

Grandpa Bill and the next generation of hotties.

Emerson and his beach pal, Ben (cute, but not related).

Evie and her annual henna tattoo.

Lately, it seems like the sand is slipping through my shovel at lightning speed. Ya know?

Love those curly locks.

Cole and Em, a little woozy after a lunchtime massage on the beach.

Potential Christmas picture. We do have a bit of a reputation for sending out a half naked Christmas card.

Gramma and Grandpa with all the cousins.

Me and my drop-dead-gorgeous sister in laws (I try not to hold it against them), whom I adore. (And no, they're not sisters. Remember, we're married to three brothers.)

I adore him, too.

Fire dancers on the beach.

Click and make bigger to fully appreciate the cuteness.

The Cousins (youngest to oldest): Ellery-2 (born two days after Soli), Soleil-2 (pronounced So-lay, for you non French speakers), Eve-5, Sienna-7, Haviland-7 (but turned 8 during this vacation), Emerson-8, Savannah-10, Gaige-10, and Coleman-11.

Extra Credit: Can you distinguish the sibling groups? (hint: there is a group of 2, a group of 3, and a group of 4)


Friday, November 07, 2008

Freaky Friday!

What's better than Halloween? Halloween on a Friday, of course! No homework, no bedtime; sure, eat all your candy; that's fine, go to bed with purple hair.

So we invited over a few friends and celebrated with pizza and pumpkin margaritas.

Hope your Halloween was as freaky as ours.

(click to make bigger)
We live in a darling little town that is a very popular locale for trick or treating. At one point we had a line from the door all the way down our front walkway to the sidewalk. I had bought four big bags of candy from Costco in preparation. It wasn't enough, and we ended the night handing out pumpkin stickers. Kids love getting stickers on Halloween...glad we didn't get toilet papered.

An "optical" illusion

At our house, we love, love, love any occasion to dress up. In fact, we don't even need an occasion. We have a dress-up trunk filled with all kinds of fun costumes. So when Halloween comes to town it is not unusual for the kids to "be" several different characters during the course of the holiday. For example, Soli wore her Snow White costume to the pumpkin patch and her ladybug costume on Halloween night.

Cole was Ace Ventura Pet Detective for his Halloween dance and was a Gramma on Halloween.

Emerson originally wanted to be a 1940's gangster (complete with oozie, of course), but that morphed into a butler (with purple hair?) for the school parade. Then on Halloween night he added a mustache and a fidora (minus the napkin) for a Charlie Chaplin look. Clever really.

Evie was stedfast in her desire to be Princess Jasmine. Her favorite princess, by the way.

Our little Solibug. Cole wore this costume when he was two. Remember Frances from a Bug's Life?

Pumpkin Margaritas. Yummy! Went down a little too easily, but that's another advantage to the Friday night Halloween. Sleep in on Saturday. Oh wait...a 9AM soccer game? RIGHT...

Thriller, "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun", Cyndi Lauper, Boy George, Aquanet, hair crimpers (remember those?!), caboodles, pegged pants, Kevin Bacon.
What's your favorite memory from the 80's?

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Obama Baby!

I am proud of this country.
On the world stage, I think we just earned ourselves some respect.
Much deserved.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

The Day We Met - From His Perspective

Part I / Part II / Part III / Part IV / Part V

A guest post from my very favorite person.

I have always enjoyed reading this blog but never more so than lately. The story of how I met my wife is my favorite story. Normally though, when it is told we are together. So as I read the blog I am compelled to write a little of the story from my perspective.

I was 25, just a few years out of college, unwilling to commit in any relationship and a career that was off track. I called a good friend of mine who owned a Morgen 36’ (sailboat) in Miami and asked him “Where do you want your boat this winter?” I did not expect his immediate response… “Belize!” I immediately quit my job and sublet my apartment. Seven days later I was on a plane to Miami studying weather patterns for the Western Caribbean. Within two weeks I was throwing my dock lines. For the next seven and a half months I sailed the waterways of Belize, Guatemala and Honduras. As I entered the Rio Dulce in Guatemala for the third and final time before sailing back to Miami, I began to resign myself to loneliness. It took 25 years, and 8 months at sea, but I finally embraced the loneliness that had defined me for so long.

Days later, I was sitting in my favorite restaurant. The power in town was turned off to save energy so I was reading Tom Clancy by flashlight when she walked in. I knew right away that this was going to be one of those moments I would spend the rest of my life wondering about. A boat driver tried desperately to find gas to take her to an orphanage down-river. Another older sailor offered her a beer but she declined. Before long every other person in the restaurant had tried to intervene in some way. A debate ensued over the distance between Mario’s Marina and the orphanage she needed to get to. If I entered the conversation unsolicited I would squander any chance of her trusting me. Finally the proprietor, my friend Holly, asked me that fateful question I had been dying for someone to ask me. “Dave, how far is the orphanage from Mario’s Marina?” If I told the truth and said that it was not too far away she would have passed right through my life, never to be seen again. I waited for a few seconds, knowing that I did not want to sound too desperate… then calmly I said, “It’s far, really far.” Having not said a single word during the entire ordeal up to this point, I had somehow elevated myself to the “All knowing one” in the bar. I had been given the last word, and the debate was over. She would not be making it to the orphanage that night.

Over the days and weeks that followed, I fell deeply in love with her.

How cute is he?? You can read the finale to my side of the story in the post below.

The Day We Met - Finale

Part I / Part II / Part III / Part IV / Part V


Dave - sailing off the coast of Central America - 1995

Me on a dock on Isla Mujeres - 1995

As we walked toward each other that morning on the dock, neither of us would have guessed that I would never make it to the orphanage. Instead there would be a haircut, a breakfast, an invitation to stay for the weekend, an afternoon sail to the lake, a shrimp dinner, a foot rub, a skinny dip, an all night talk, a sunrise, a call home, a 500 mile sail back to the States, a worried mom, a message waiting in Belize, a stopover in Havana, another all night talk (or two or three), another sunrise (or two or three), a homecoming in Miami, a borrowed Buick, a drive cross country, an acknowledgment of love, a stopover in Montana, another skinny dip, a puppy in Salt Lake, a camping trip in California, a proposal, a wedding, a baby, a house, a business, another baby, a cat, another baby, another cat (or two or three), a 10 year anniversary in Guatemala, and another baby. That just about brings us up to speed.

And with the passing of each of the above mentioned events, I have fallen more deeply in love with the man I met on the Rio Dulce. The man I call my husband, the father of my children, my soul mate, and my very best friend. I love you, Dave.

Waiting out Hurricane Allison on Isla Mujeres, Mexico - 1995