Saturday, December 3, 2011

Thanksgiving at Disneyland

 We decided it was finally time to take our girls to Disneyland. I had the Wednesday before Thanksgiving off from work this year and Washington State was in a basketball tournament in the Disneyland area. It was destiny.

We drove to Anaheim on Wednesday during the day. We got settled in the hotel and hung out for the night. Thursday was Thanksgiving. We got up, had breakfast, and headed to Disneyland. We hadn't told the girls where we were going at all. They had been happy thinking we were just taking a family trip and staying in a hotel. Ryann figured it out from conversations on the shuttle bus. She just got a big grin.

Once we were there, we headed for Fantasy Land. We rode the carousel, the Dumbo ride, and It's a Small World. Scott was a real trooper. He stood in line for the girls to meet the princesses for quite a while. I took the girls to see a princess show while he waited. They got to meet Tiana and Ariel. Later, we stood in another line and met Rapunzel.

In the afternoon, we went back to the hotel to have sandwiches and naps. It may not have been a fancy Thanksgiving meal, but it worked. After recharging, we headed back to the park for the evening festivities. There was a Christmas parade with all the characters, music, and lights. It was very exciting for the girls. After that, they changed the castle lights to it's Christmas theme. They played Christmas music on Main Street and made it snow. The girls thought that was awesome. I'd have to agree. Scott and I thought it was the highlight of the trip.

Once the excitement ended, Scott headed to a basketball game and we met up with some friends. We went on the Winnie the Pooh ride and Jungle Cruise then called it a day. The girls were giggly when we first got back to the hotel, but once I got them in bed, it was silent.
The next day, we headed back to the park. We met Tinkerbell and rode the Nemo ride. We took a train ride around the park then decided to take an early lunch/nap break. We had lunch at California Pizza Kitchen. We all rested up a bit before heading back for another evening round. We walked around, went on the carousel, and rode Winnie the Pooh again. Scott headed to another game while the girls and I had an ice cream then walked downtown Disney. By then, we were spent. We went back and watched a Christmas movie on TV.

We decided that 2 days was about right. I wouldn't want to do much more than that. The girls had a great time, and we saw a lot of what we wanted to for this trip. There's a lot more that we can do when they get bigger. Somehow, I ended up telling Ryann that we'd go back when she's 7. Knowing her, she'll hold us to it.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The First of Many

It finally happened. Avery took a spill bad enough for an emergency room visit. I knew it was just  a matter of time. She's our little maniac. She climbs like a monkey and isn't exactly graceful on her feet. She already has a tooth that's broken up at the root from one of her tumbles. This time, it was stitches.
We returned from our usual during-dinner trip to the potty. She began to climb up into Ryann's booster seat. She tipped backward and ended up under the table, bleeding from the mouth. She was crying and holding it. I picked her up, thinking it was the usual bloody lip. I took her to wipe her up and saw that there was quite a bit of blood. We wiped it up and I immediately knew it required a doctor visit. Avery calmed down and we took off to the urgent care office. When they saw it, they told me I needed to go to the ER. She needed stitches.
Of course the closest hospital didn't have a pediatric ER so I drove another 30 minutes. Avery was awesome. She was very calm and held a paper towel on her boo-boo the whole time. She even played in the ER waiting room. They were very nice and took good care of her. She was a very cooperative patient and they all commented on what a good girl she was. They wrapped her in a sheet to work on her, but she had no intention of moving. I didn't do as well as she did. They told me to sit down and gave me water. She ended up with 3 stitches and a teddy bear.
It was a late night. It was after 11:30 when we got home. She went right to sleep. It was a pretty scary thing for me. I didn't enjoy seeing my baby bleeding and getting stitched, but it could have been worse. I'm thankful that it went as well as it did. Knowing her, it's the first of many ER visits we'll make along the way. It hasn't slowed her down a bit!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

It's a Girl!

That's right, another Dobbins girl is on the way. I had an ultrsound on November 9. Thankfully, everything looked great. The baby is growing well and everything is developed as it should be. I had tried to prepare myself to hear it was a girl, but held out hope for a boy. I guess it's just not meant to be. The good thing is, we're all set. We have lots of clothes for girls. :0) I'm looking forward to meeting our newest daughter. Now, we just need a name. It could take some time. Luckily, we have until the end of March to decide.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Act of Bravery

My brother and I took the girls to the Phoenix Zoo on Monday, Oct. 17. We rode the merry-go-round, looked at the animals, and played at the Fisher-Price Farm area as usual. The shocking twist was that Ryann wanted to ride a camel. We've tried several times before to get her to try it, but she refused. This time, she said she wanted to. We got the ticket and waited for her to freak out and change her mind. Nope. She went and liked it! She didn't whine or cry or even look scared. It was awesome. Afterward, she said, "I was very brave." I was pretty proud of her. She's not exactly adventurous. She'll only ride the giraffe on the merry-go-round because it's the only one that doesn't go up and down. This was a pleasant surprise.

Cougs Game 2011

Each year, Scott and I take a trip to see his beloved WSU Cougars play football. In the past few years, it's been a fun trip, but has had poor results. The Cougs lost each time and gave up at least 40 points. This year, however, things were different! On October 1st, we went to Boulder, CO to see the Cougs play the Colorado Buffaloes. As usual, it was a very nice trip. The girls stayed home with my mother. It's a nice campus, the weather was great, and things went fairly smoothly. As always, I enjoyed learning the mascot. They have a real live buffalo! The unusual part is...the Cougs won! It was awesome! They came back in the end and won 31-27. It was the first time I'd seen them win a football game. They're much more successful this year than in years past. That makes for a happier hubby. I like that. The only down side from the trip is that I lost my phone on the way back. I had to go over a week without one. I have a new one now, so all's well. :0)

Time Flies!

I can't believe that I haven't put a word in the blog since August. It was a crazy first quarter at school. My mentor teacher position keeps me even busier than usual. To top it off, I'm still a coordinator for our after school program. I don't have time to do anything anymore. I'm constantly trying to do what MUST be done that day. It's exhausting and I never catch up.
Luckily, I'm on Fall Break right now. I worked Monday-Thursday last week, coordinating our Fall Intersession program. Since then, I've been hanging out with my girls and catching up on stuff.

A friend of Scott's gave the girls his girls' old bikes. Ryann and Avery love them. We ride to the parks in our neighborhood. They have tons of fun.
Aside from the bike riding, we've been staying close to home. Avery is potty training. She's doing really well, but we don't want to push it too far yet. I did take her to Michael's and Target the other day. We went potty in Target and she had no accidents. I felt it was a successful outing.
Even though the pool water is getting chilly, the girls still like to splash around a bit. It's way too cold for me. My brother and Scott were swimming this week, but not me. The water was in the low 70s. Brrrrrr. I've come to appreciate 85-90 degree water. :0) Avery got in today and sat right in the water with her clothes on. I think she's insane. It's too cold for me!

Ryann is still going to preschool 2 days per week. She loves it and is doing very well. I hope it'll help her to be ready for kindergarten next year. It's coming so quickly!

In other news.... In case you haven't heard, Ryann and Avery will have a younger sibling by April 6. That's our due date, but we anticipate an end of March arrival due to the c-section. We find out November 9 if it's a boy or girl. Ryann insists that it needs to be a boy. I'm convinced it's another girl. I guess we'll see.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Preschool Has Begun!

Ryann started preschool this past week. She's going to a local church preschool two days each week. She's been begging to go for months. I took her to visit in May and she hasn't stopped talking about it ever since. Monday night, we had her backpack packed, clothes picked out, and lunch bag ready. Tuesday morning, she was excited and ready to go. We dropped Avery off at daycare and headed to preschool. We were shown to her classroom, walked in the door, and the water works began. She hid her face in my legs and cried. After a few minutes of coaxing, they were able to divert her attention with some princess toys. Imagine that. I tried to take her picture but the camera battery was dead. She seemed fine after a few minutes so I left.
Scott and I both went to pick her up that afternoon. She was VERY grumpy. The teacher had already left and the aides said they thought she had a good day. She wouldn't tell us much due to a severe case of the grouchies. I had replaced the camera battery so we did get a post preschool day grumpy picture.

On Thursday, she was happy to go to her class in the morning. She wasn't thrilled when they asked her to wait in another room for a while. I waited with her a few minutes until her room opened. I left work a little early that day so I could meet the teacher. I introduced mysef and asked how it went. She said it was good except for a little "prima donna issue." I can't say that I was surprised to hear that. Apparently, Ryann and another girl are trying to establish a pecking order, especially regarding princess toys. I told the teacher that this was excatly why she was there. :0) We try to talk to her about being a good friend and sharing, etc., but I think it'll take more formal experiences to get her to understand.
We're looking forward to a smooth week 2 this week.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

New Hobbies

This summer, my friend, Annie, and I decided to pick up some new hobbies. We started out with knitting. That was fun, but somewhat complicated. I can make an awesome rectangle, but that's about it. Then we decided to try sewing. We were able to make some pretty cute tote bags in our first class. Friday night, we took another class and made pillowcase dresses for the girls. Avery's is a little big, but that was as small as the pattern made. Annie made one and I made one. The next morning, I made handbags with the extra material. It may not seem like much, but I'm proud of our work. :0)

Friday, July 29, 2011

Trip to NY

We're back from our trip to NY. We flew back to see my family and friends. I also attended my 20-year high school reunion. Idon't know how it's possible that I've been out of school 20 years!

It was a pretty easy trip out, except for a delay in Newark. The girls were excited and did very well on the planes. We got to my dad's late Tuesday night (7/19). The girls were wound up and didn't get to sleep until well past midnight. That didn't stop them from getting up at 6am the next day, though. The girls didn't get much sleep throughout the trip. Scott and I took long drives a few times to facilitate naptime. As soon as they were strapped in car seats, it was lights out.
We were super busy the whole time. We spent time with my dad & step-mom, my brother, my mom, my cousins, and my friends. We went to some of our favorite eateries in the Binghamton area and caught a Binghamton Mets game. Scott and I even had some time without the kids. That was nice. It was great to let the girls spend time with family and play in the country a bit. They got to experience lots of animals including cats, dogs, frogs, cows, and alpacas. Unfortunately, Ryann is allergic to cats so she had a little issue. She learned to admire kitties from a distance. She also got sick and had to go to the doctor on the trip. Her ailments, combined with lack of sleep, caused quite an emotional week. By the time our return trip came, she was miserable on the plane and in the airports. We were really relieved to get home. We arrived late Wednesday night (7/27). I love visiting my family and friends, but it can be a bit stressful as well. :0)
I'm back to work now. I went back the morning after we got back. I'm ready for a new school year already. Students come August 8th. This summer flew by!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Children's Museum

My friend and I took our kids to the Children's Museum of Phoenix today. It was awesome. The girls loved everything about it. There were tons of different areas to go in and play. They were able to touch everything and do all sorts of activites. They shopped for groceries, cooked, gardened, went through a pool noodle forest, put balls through cool maze things, drove things, and more. It was a lot like the Discovery Center in Binghamton, only super-sized. Ryann was especially excited about the 3-story "treehouse" thing. It's like an enormouse jungle gym/sculpture that the kids can go through. The kids loved it. Avery was a little less adventurous. I had to go up and get her once because she felt "stuck." She didn't know how to go back down the ramp she had climbed. I felt pretty good about being able to let them run around safely. It was low-stress. They even have tot-sized toilets. Ryann enjoyed that. Overall, it was a great experience. I'll definitely have to take them back again someday soon.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Zoo Day

Scott took the day off on Friday, so we set out for a family safari. We headed over to the Phoenix Zoo. Since it's over 100 degrees here most days now, we went early. We got there around 7:30am. By 10:30, we were wrapping it up and heading home. It was actually a nice trip. It was warm, but not super hot yet. There weren't a ton of people there, so that made for a peaceful time. We saw most of the animals, rode the merry-go-round, and petted the stingrays. The girls wore their giraffe-print dresses in honor of the occasion. It was a fun outing and we still had plenty of the day left for playing, napping and just being together.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Avery at the Dentist

 Avery went to the dentist for the first time this afternoon. Ryann went for her second visit, as well. Ryann went first. She was very happy to go and was very cooperative. While Avery and I waited, I was getting nervous because she wasn't doing her usual shy act. She was running around the waiting room and kept running into the records area. I kept saying, "I'm sorry," to the ladies behind the counter. I thought it was going to be quite a visit if this kept up. Fotunately, when they took her for x-rays, she settled right down. She looks quite pathetic actually, but don't let her fool you. :0)
After the x-rays, we entered the exam area and I smelled an unpleasant smell coming from her diaper. I had to excuse us for a few minutes while I took her to the car then restroom for a change. Once we finally got the exam underway, she was very cooperative and quiet. She got to wear sunglasses and watch a movie overhead. She did very well and didn't seem to mind at all. She especially enjoyed getting a t-shirt and balloon. The dentist informed me that the x-rays showed a tooth broken at the root. Apparently one of her million falls on her face resulted in a broken tooth. The tooth will probably turn colors and fall out or need to be removed. Then, she'll have a gap until her permanent teeth come in. I can't say that I'm surprised. She's constantly falling. She's just into everything and always on the go at top speed. I just hope she gets herself under control before her permanent teeth come in. I forsee an expensive dental future.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Fourth of July

 Tonight was the annual Independence Day event at the Goodyear Ballpark. I took the girls over to partake in the chaos and spend some time with their daddy at work. They love to go to Daddy's work. We walked around a bit, enjoyed the music, and got something to eat. Ryann had to have a hot dog, probably because we saw the Nathan's hot dog eating contest from Coney Island on TV this afternoon. After that, we headed down to Scott's shop. We like to set up our own fireworks viewing area. We put a blanket on the grass and let the girls run around. It's nice to escape the crowd and enjoy the fireworks as a family. Ryann loved how "colorful and wonderful" they were. Avery clapped and cheered. Both girls had to run around a bit during the fireworks show. Their attention spans aren't quite up to the whole show. The fireworks ended just before the sprinklers came on in our zone. It was perfect. :0)
Here are some pictures of the festivities. I'm not sure why Ryann can't keep her eyes open when she smiles for pictures. Some are a bit blurry, but you get the idea.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Summer Fun

WSU Shirts for Father's Day Picture
My summer vacation has finally begun. I've had trainings and/or been at work almost all of June. Now that July is here, I'm ready to realx a bit. The girls and I have had a lot more time together lately. They tire me out but I love being with them. I feel like I get to know them on a whole new level when I'm not working. Avery is into trouble every few seconds, but is a sponge for learning new things. Ryann is obsessed with being 4 and "a big girl" now. She can't wait to go to preschool in August. We do preschool time at home most days. She loves to play school. Unfortunately, she's not a fan of being told to change something she's doing. We'll see how that goes over in school. Luckily she's usually more cooperative with other adults than with her parents. Overall, she's pretty good most of the time. We just need to tame the drama queen in her. Avery is a bit of a bully to her big sis. I spend a lot of time refereeing as Avery torments her emotional sister. Ahh...the joys of motherhood.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Desert Fun

Scott has renewed his passion for running. He's been doing races here and there but runs long distances regularly. He even ran to work the other day. It's 8.2 miles! Ugh!

In an effort to participate in family fun, we took the girls to the White Tank Mountains last Sunday. We went to play around while Scott ran about 8 miles through the wilderness. It was peaceful and something different to see. The girls and I took advantage of one of the playgounds. We checked out the nature center and library, but they were closed. Of course, we checked out the potty. The weather was warm and breezy. We stayed until just before sunset. I would like to be able to do some hiking as well, but the girls are too little, still. It was nice, anyway. Here are some pictures of our adventure. 

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Birthdays, Photos, and Doctors...Oh my!

Avery's Birthday
The month of May has certainly been a busy one. As we wind down the month on this Memorial Day weekend, I thought I'd share some of our May excitement.
Princess Castle Cake 2011
Avery turned 2 on the 2nd and Ryann turned 4 on the16th so we had to have a princess party! On Sunday, May 15th, we had 13 kids and their parents. We had a bouncy castle and castle cake. Ryann loved the bouncer, but Avery waited until everyone went home. She decided it was ok to go if Daddy was in there, too. The girls were spoiled rotten with gifts from their friends. They had a blast! Ryann is still asking if she can have another birthday. She also has decided that she can do a lot more now that she's 4. She'll say, "Look, Mom, I can reach now!" It's amazing how much she grew and matured overnight. :0)

Ryann & Her BFFs

On the 13th, Scott & my anniversary, I took the girls for annual photos. At first, Avery was terrified, but she warmed up and everything went fine. 

On the 17th, I took the girls to the doctor for their annual check-ups. Ryann had to have some vaccinations. She took them well and won't need more until she's 11. She is in the 60th percentile for height and 70th percentile for weight. Avery is up to the 40th percentile in both. She's gaining.

To add to the family craziness in May, I've been super busy at work. The school year is winding down so there's tons of work to be done. I'm wrapping up things for the grant I coordinate, getting ready to do reports for the state. I was hired as a mentor teacher for next year so I have meetings and trainings beginning. Overall, there's just a ton. Report cards have to be done by the last day of school, June 7. Then I can sigh a big sigh....and start trainings for next year on the 8th. This summer will be pretty busy, but we're looking forward to a trip to NY in July. Both kids trapped on an airplane across the country should be interesting. Stay tuned.

Sunday, May 8, 2011


Avery & her bunny
May is a pretty important month for our family.

On Monday, the 2nd, my little baby turned 2 years old. I can't believe she's getting to be such a big girl. She's talking a lot more and doing all kinds of things by herself. She's into all kinds of mischief, too. She's a handful but she's still my snuggly baby.

Scott and I will be celebrating our 6th wedding anniversary on Friday, the 13th. My mom will be here so we can go on a real date, without kids. :0)

Ryann turns 4 on the 16th. We'll be having a party for both girls this coming weekend. We've got a plethora of princess stuff for the occasion. Ryann has requested another princess castle cake this year so I'll be busy getting that ready as well.

Both girls get to go to the doctor on the 17th. Happy's your shots. :0)

Sunday, May 1, 2011

A Day at the Zoo

The Birthday Girl
In honor of Avery's birthday, my friend, Annie and I took the girls to the Phoenix Zoo. We all had fun walking around and looking at the animals. Ryann rode the merry-go-round, and actually enjoyed the first and last 15 seconds of the ride. We had a picnic with a variety of feathered friends. The girls got to play in the Little People farm area. Aside from a couple of scraped knees and my slight sunburn, things went well.
Ryann & Avery Taking a Break
Scott was out of town this weekend. He went home to Washington to make his return to the Bloomsday 12K race in Spokane. It's much colder than he's used to. He said they were hoping for the 40s today. Brrrr... He texted me that he finished the race in under an hour. He must have taken Ryann's advice. Last night on the phone she said, "Run very fast, Daddy." We're proud of him. :0)

Sunday, April 24, 2011


We began our Easter festivities last week with an egg hunt and Easter Bunny encounter at an event for employees in my school district. That was ok. The girls found a few eggs among the gazillion other kids seeking them. Avery found a "golden ticket" in one of hers. She won a chocolate bunny, which her daddy was happy to eat for her. Meeting the bunny didn't exactly go well. It was much like our Santa meeting. Both girls were terrified of the huge rodent. I thought he was cute.

This Saturday, we colored eggs. Well, I colored them and the girls fought with each other then went outside to play while I finished. That night, we all headed to church. After church, we quickly got the kids to bed with promises that the Easter bunny would know if they weren't sleeping. I filled baskets and eggs as Scott and I watched a movie together. We're a bit wild & and crazy because we stayed up until almost 11:00. The night before we were asleep by 9. That was awesome!

I had planned to get up around 6 and hide eggs for the morning hunt. The girls usually get up between 6:30 and 7. Ryann decided to come in around 5:45 asking to snuggle in my bed. Hmmm.... That posed a problem. After a few minutes of snuggles, I sent her back to her room so I could sneak downstairs and to the backyard. Surprisingly, she went willingly and I crept down the stairs and to the back door. I quietly opened the sliding glass door and BEEEEEEEEEEPPPPPPPP!!!!!! I had forgotten to turn off the alarm. I ran to enter the code and slid out the backdoor. Just as I got outside, the phone ran. It was the alarm company following up. Wow! I hid the eggs and went back to bed. I told Scott that I was super sneaky. He agreed that no one would ever notice me. I guess I wouldn't be any good as a private detective or something. Either way, the girls slept through it and were pleasantly surprised to find filled baskets and eggs in the backyard.

The girls spent most of the day today eating jelly beans and fighting over other things from their baskets. Avery even stole some candy from Daddy's basket. It was nice to have a day for the four of us to be together. We tried to go swimming this afternoon. The pool was 75 degrees. We went in but Avery and I were too wimpy to get wet all  the way. It was sunny, breezy and warm, but the water felt super chilly. Maybe May will have warmer water for us. I'm sure our friends and family in NY and Washington couldn't swim today, either. :0)~