Thursday, August 17, 2017

Book Review

I really enjoyed all of these latest reads so I hope you'll read some of them too and we can chat!

MoloKa'i was our book club pic for last month and we all really enjoyed it. It's one of those books that includes a little bit of everything historical fiction, love, drama, suspense, family conflict, mystery. I was fascinated to learn about the leper colonies on Hawaii and there are STILL people that live there. The story spans the whole life of a girl sent to live there. I don't want to spoil the plot hole that we all seemed to notice, but we chalked it up to being written by a man not a woman. I give it a 9 and recommend it to all!

At Home in the World. This was a memoir of sorts written by a mom whose family (including 3 small kids) travelled the world for a year. It's not a "how to" book, although she does delve into some budget friendly tips, but more about what she learned from it and entertaining stories from her journeys. I really enjoyed it and recommend it to those with a family and a sense of wanderlust. I give it an 8.

Girls and Sex. So I picked up this book after hearing the ladies Ted talk. And I heard the Ted talk recommended after watching a video series on talking to your kids about sex. I'd planned on having "the talk" with Liv soon, but when she saw my book she let me know that she'd already heard some things from her friends soooo we ended up having that talk a little sooner that I'd planned. Anyway the book is a really interesting journalistic look at girls and sex in our society today. With influences of the internet, social media, porn and a lack of families having healthy conversations on the topic it has led to some sad warped views on this subject. It is not written from any kind of religious viewpoint, but according to her research those things don't really make a difference in statistics of the people she interviewed. If anything it will open up your eyes to the world in which we live so you can be better prepared when the time comes to have those conversations with your kids. I recommend it to parents...even parents of boys because what they're being taught or exposed to is equally important too. I give it an 9.

We Are Never Meeting in Real Life was my pick for book club this month. I kept seeing it pop up in places and it's a book of essays about the author's life. She has a similar humor to Jenny Lawson so I recommend it if you liked her memoirs. Each chapter could stand along and while some are rather sad about the broken home she grew up in, others are hilarious tales of self deprecation and veterinary office adventures. The author is brutally honest in hilarious and almost uncomfortable ways at times...but I always appreciate raw vulnerability even when it makes me blush! In fair warning there are a few very graphic chapters and lots of language throughout. But I recommend it if you like memoirs or her blog. I give it a 9.

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is another title I kept seeing pop up places so I checked it out. It's a story of a very socially awkward adult and how her life begins to change after helping a stranger on the street with a coworker. Socially awkward people can be uncomfortable to be around in real life but in this book she's really amusing and funny. Of course you begin to find out some of the reasons she is the way she is but you'll be cheering for her all the way through the book. I recommend it to everyone and give it a 9.

The Lost City of Z was written by the same journalist who wrote Killers of the Flower Moon so I knew I wanted to read it. This book is about the author's personal adventure into the disappearance of world famous explorer Percy Fawcett. Hundreds of others have tried to find him and died trying in the Amazon over the past decades. I learned so much about early explorers, Victorian society, and the Amazon. I really enjoy this author and he does a great job of presenting a well rounded story. He doesn't sugar coat things, he doesn't paint characters in a great light, he shows people's strengths and their flaws that can be fatal at times....which I guess is the sign of a good journalist! This book was made into a movie recently so I'm sure I'll watch it soon but I doubt it's as good as the book. I give it an 8 and recommend it if you like non-fiction or stories of exploration.

What are you reading?
Rules of rating seen here

Friday, August 11, 2017

First Day of School {Second Grade Edition}

She must truly be a second grader because she woke up with her alarm, got dressed on her own, and made her bed without me asking all before coming downstairs and making her own breakfast and putting the lunch she'd packed herself in her backpack! We were off for a smooth start yesterday morning for sure!
I was surprised to learn that she wants to be a lifeguard when she grows up. She told me recently Jenna told her if you're a lifeguard at a waterpark, you get to have fun on the slides before and after all the people are gone so that has sealed the deal in her mind currently!
I did not get a pic of her morning surprises but we got her a few new lunch box containers, some shirts (that aren't for a uniform), gum, and hand sanitizer.
My french braid skills have been improving.

I was weepy the week before this day, mainly because she's just getting so big so fast, but I was fine by the actual first day.
I'm so proud of this girl!
Due to circumstances beyond our control we were unable to meet her teacher before the first day of school. She did email us so we knew who she was, but I think Liv was a little nervous that she didn't even know where her classroom was. And yes I could've walked her in but downtown parking and toddlers who weren't happy to be woken up early didn't seem to bode well for that sort of thing. So she walked in bravely by herself carrying a basket of goodies for her teacher and I saw her stop to ask the music teacher where her class was. 
This year's boohoo brunch was at Mary Eddy's and I don't think a single tear was shed. Haven scarfed down a pancake and managed to get syrup all over us and butter in my hair so I think it was a success!
Love these mama friends!
Afterward I headed to the grocery store and spent the day playing with Haven and doing housework. A few times she asked where her sissy was.
I thought Haven might forget the Pick-Up Procedures but as soon we neared the school she quickly remembered what to do.... 
Notice she fell asleep clipping her fingernails
 While she snoozed I took Liv to get a Shimmers Sno Cone for a great first day of second grade! She has a few friends in her class, seemed to like her teacher, and is glad they do not have Spanish class this year (although I'm sad about that). I hope the rest of the school year goes this smoothly!

Comparison pics (I did not get a sibling pic as Haven was NOT happy about waking up early. Don't worry, Haven, carpool starts soon!)

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Going out with a Bang!

Our summer days drew to a close this week as school started yesterday. We had planned a few fun things to do but our bowling trip got turned into a trip to Riversport Adventures instead. Go big or go home!
I really like this place because unlike Frontier City or White Water bay....you can watch your kids have fun without having to pay for a ticket yourself! I'm not sure I'd enjoy the climbing things there although the water slide was tempting. I'd like to go back sometime and maybe do the white water rafting but all the high heights don't really appeal to me! Liv abosolutely loved it though. Anything that involves climbing, launching, and seems terrifying to your mother is right up her ally!
Noah and Liv both did the Rumble Drop (A harnessed straight jump from the top of that tall thing!) thanks to an ice cream bribery from Jenna! 

Jackson, Liv, and Noah all harnessed up and ready to go!
Haven found shorter structures to climb on!
 
Someday I'll have to take Liv back to that rock climbing place, she really has knack for scaling things at ridiculous speeds. She made it to the top on all the sides of this wall!
I love the view from the big jumping pillow of the downtown skyline
 Lest you think taking Haven places like this is a breeze, there were plenty of tantrums thrown...
 Dead weight whiney 2 yr olds aren't my favorite things to lug around BUT when you're this cute it helps! 
 She did have lot of fun on the trampoline and the stairs.
Here's a combined video of the slides (that launcher one sure was fun to just watch people's faces on!), jumping, and catastrophic kayak ride. I thought it was a worker rescuing them from across the river but no he was just a nice man. We tipped him!

The next day Liv and I planned to get pedicures and Roxy's ice cream. We let Haven stay home with Daddy on his lunch break so it could just be the two of us.
We go to Hawaii Nails by our house.
Liv asked while we waited for our nails to dry
Liv: Do you have to be Hawaiin to work here? Could I work here someday?
Me: No you don't have to be Hawaiin but I'm pretty certain none of the workers are from Hawaii
Liv: Are you sure? Because they aren't speaking English.
Me: Well you can ask them where they are if from if you'd like, but there's a really good chance they're from Vietnam
Liv: WELL THEN THEY SHOULD CALL IT VIETNAM NAILS!
Me: Wellllll......ok yeah sure

Later she asked me if just the two of us could take a cruise together around the world to see Vietnam. Maybe so sweetie.

They were hiring at Roxy's and you definitely didn't have to be Hawaiian or Vietnamese to work there, but Liv's dreams were dashed when I told her she wasn't old enough to get a job yet.

We stopped to watch the monthly mural being painted in the Plaza for a bit while we finished our ice cream.

Love my brave and fun loving girl! Can't believe how fast this summer went by!

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Zoo Day

We finally had some decent weather last week that wasn't over 100 degrees so we hit up the zoo with a friend for a bit. The girls really love the birds right now so we didn't see too many other animals!
This is what happens when you try to take a selfie with a bird on your shoulder...it moves to your head midshot!
 
Liv lured them on her head!
She's quite the bird charmer!
We watched the wallabies box like kangaroos do for awhile. Haven sees that rope there as a mild suggestion so we can't stay for long or they might box her!
The water and playground areas of course were favored over the animal viewing!
 
 I'm not sure if she was watching her reflection or the monkeys!
Haven and Alexa met in the waiting room at Liv's gymnastics practice last year so they became weekly playmates and her mom and I got to know each other too. They have the same sweet curly hair! Alexa is having heart surgery today so please say a prayer today for her, her family, and the doctors!
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