Our Indian Summer

This weekend was so relaxing. It was warm every day and we ended up at two beaches between Friday and Saturday. Friday was a fun day. John watched the kids so I could go meet some ladies at our church for a Bible study. It was so refreshing to be able to fellowship with other Christian women. After that it was off to run a few errands (kid free!). I found Olivia’s shoes to go with her flower girl dress, so that was a big check off the list. Uncle David is getting married soon and Liv & Cliff will be getting a new Aunt! Liv already loves Katelyn (as we all do!) so she’s very excited about being the flower girl. It was really energizing to have some time out by myself. I think as moms it’s really hard to make time for ourselves to recharge, but it’s as important for our kids as it is for us. John is so helpful in making that happen for me! Even if it is just getting out for a morning it really helps my attitude and energy for the next days and helps give me some new perspective.

That afternoon we just hung out around the house – I did a little cleaning and laundry and the kids took naps. Once Liv woke we packed up our things and headed to Asilomar Beach – just a mile down the road. It is a hot weekend here in PG so we wanted to take advantage of the weather! 20131005-180850.jpgWe built sandcastles and explored the beach for things the waves washed up. There were a ton of huge piles of kelp all over the beach and there have been really big waves in the ocean. There have also been a lot of humpback whale sightings in the Bay (John & Liv saw one earlier in the week). We found some sort of jelly animal (or piece of one); it didn’t appear alive. John touched it first, then I did once I saw he survived, haha. After that we let Liv poke it around. She had a good time burying it in the sand and rediscovering it. I love hanging out on the beach when it’s warm. The first many times we went to the beach here in the Monterey area we were very unprepared for the weather. It helps that we’ve acclimated some this year – and the Indian Summer is in full swing – so we’re really getting some nice warm days lately. Times like these make me never want to leave this place…

Saturday morning we decided to drive up to Santa Cruz for the day. Since last May when we moved here, we’d yet to take a day to explore SC, so it was time to make that happen. We all buckled up in the car and were on our way, when just half a mile from the house Olivia decides she needs to go potty (again!). We turned around, made a pit stop and got back on our way. 20131007-102423.jpgIt’s so awesome to me that she is potty trained – but it can be a pain sometimes. Naps she takes in her big girl panties now but bedtime we still do a cloth diaper. She almost always wakes up dry so it’s just about time to make the last move from diapers.

We decided to spend most our time in Santa Cruz in the downtown area. It had a hip, new feel to it with lots of unique restaurants and organic clothing stores. It definitely epitomized California as we’ve come to know it on the central coast. 20131007-102433.jpgWe had lunch at The Greek, an authentic Greek restaurant, where we learned that contrary to popular belief, hummus is not Greek. 20131007-102448.jpg

20131007-102456.jpgAfter some perusing of bookstores and clothing shops we decided to do dessert at The Penny IceCreamery. Our good friends, the Humrs had suggested it to us. The made-from-scratch, in house, organic, local ingredient ice cream did not disappoint. I had the earl grey, which was like a refreshing latte in a cone. John had the stout chocolate peanut and Olivia had a chocolate sorbet (her first ice cream cone!). It was fun going to such a unique place. 20131007-102504.jpgNext we headed for the mile long walk down to the boardwalk.

This was the first time we stayed out somewhere with the intention of being gone through nap time for Olivia. She loves her naps and is usually pretty cranky if she doesn’t get one. But it worked out well. She got a little snooze in the car there and back (it’s an hour drive) and rested in the stroller on our walk down to the ocean. Cliff of course slept in the Ergo. When we got to the beach we were all hot, and the freezing cold Pacific Ocean was a welcome break for our feet. 20131007-102511.jpgI was afraid we were losing our Texas edge – this heat was a lot for us to handle! But when we finally got back to the car the temperature read 91 outside. The hottest day we’d felt in a long time, that’s for sure! The drive back was quiet, both kids slept and John and I got some time to converse at more length about our parenting goals and how that will play out practically in our home. 20131007-102522.jpgOn Sunday we enjoyed hearing a good sermon at our church, and fellowshipping with the church body over lunch. Watching the Cowboys nearly beat the undefeated Broncos was fun, too. Again, I am just so thankful for all this time together as a family. It’s so nice that John doesn’t have to rush off to read a book on South American narcotics or write another chapter on his thesis. We sure are enjoying our “stay-cation”!

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