Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Easter in Northern California

(annual Easter Sunday best, 2012, Palo Alto)

For Spring Break of sorts my entire family headed for San Francisco/Palo Alto (where we lived for awhile about 12 years ago)
It was a great 5 days of fun and all our old fav restaurants, beach spots, and memories from our life there.

We started the trip with 2 days in San Francisco


Visiting golden gate park and walking the bridge


And Eric's favorite San Fran spot, the Ferry Farmers Market. And all its divine samplings and yummy gourmet food shops. OUr kids favorite was the spot where they make all kids of grilled cheese sandwiches. Eric loved the oyster shooter bar when you picked your oyster and toppings.

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Union Square Park, Max kept feeling jipped. He said every park we went to "where are the swings? slides?" San Fran is not exactly full of playground parks.


The kids loved the Pier and Fisherman's Wharf, fun carnival food, games, and cool shops. Must more their flavor.

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Lucy loves her uncle Spencer, and she loves carousels maybe even a little more.


We had the best dinner down on the Wharf at Scoma's, delicious seafood. Ady even did her first oyster shooter. Then we followed that up by dessert at Ghiradelli Square. Yum.

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When we lived in California, our very favorite beach to go to as a family was San Gregario. It always had tons of logs, we would build beach forts, and chase he tide into caves. And catch teeny sand crabs. We did all those things again. My kids loved it.


Our try at a beach family portrait, I don't remember who took this pic but we had no warning we were about to get washed away.
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During naps one day Spencer and I hit the San Fran shopping scene. Hard.


After 2 days in the city we headed down for 2 nights in Palo Alto, the town we lived in. And it is as wonderful as I remember.
We visited out old home, and even found remnants of a treehouse we built there. My kids loved running around the gorgeous yard and we loved having all our great memories come flooding back.

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Easter morning on Sunday proved a little tricky as we were in a hotel. But we worked it out, egg hunt on the gorgeous hotel grounds, baskets hidden in my brother and parents rooms, and the easter bunny himself even showed up for the hotels brunch. Our kids were happy.

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Then we headed off for church at our old Palo Alto ward. Good to see old faces, and places.


The kids enjoyed themselves so much we practically had to drag them home. Maybe thats cuz our flight got in after midnight back to Utah. Oy. It was a exhausting trips, as are all trips with kids but lots of great memories were made.


Friday, May 25, 2012



Introducing our newest little Kandell.
Winston "Winnie" Kandell, our sweet baby bunny
7 weeks old
Lucy's early birthday gift and perfectly precious.
We are pet people I guess. Well, we are for this little guy.

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Saturday, May 19, 2012

Mother's Day


My Mother Day was full of this
Delish summer BBQ prepared by my husband for my entire family
My kids singing their primary Mothers Day songs to me up on the stand
A Sunday nap, well IM not good at napping BUT I did lay on my bed and Watch Law and Order and thats even better to me.
My family coming to my house for our Mothers Day casual outdoor feast
Gifts, cards, hugs, handmade love by my kids
Birthday desert for me and my little brother Spencer, we share a birthday week.
It was great.
Although I think after birthday week and Mother's Day, my husband is burnt out on celebrating me.
You should have seen the look on his face when we got home from Vegas and I asked if I got to sleep in the next morning (Mothers Day). 2 sleep in days in one week was not working for him.

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And I would be lame to not mention, in a post about Mothers Day my gratitude for my own mother. You gave me and all her kids everything she has and is. She's a wonderful example who Id be wise to follow. And all the other wonderful mothers in my life, including my mother in law, the mothers who are in my kids lives, my friends who are great examples of selfless, loving mothering. For my sweet babysitters Brooke and Jenny who "mother" my kids when I am not there.
I love you all.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Birthday Sleepover


I'm a lucky girl this year, my birthday May 9th landed in the middle of the week so I felt celebrated all week long. Dinner with girlfriends, lunches, park playdates, sweet gifts and notes. I'm very blessed to have such wonderful people around me.
My husband knowing, my birthday weekend always falls around Mothers Day, knew I wouldn't want to be away from the tots on Sunday so he took me to a fun Vegas overnighter Friday night. We flew down mid-day with these 2 wonderfuls (pictured below, Jodee and Rob)
and we had a great old time. We stayed at the Cosmopolitan again, my new Vegas favorite. 

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(love any reason for Vegas jewels) 

We did all my favorite Vegas things Early tapas pre-dinner at Jaleo, followed by excellent seats to Phantom of the Opera at the Venetian (did you know its ending there in Sept, so hurry and go!!) 


I got to sport my new gorgeous clutch from Lindsey, Jodee and Court all night.

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Then after Phantom we hit up a new sushi spot at the Cosmo Blue Ribbon Sushi, I thinkit was good, nothing incredible except the toro.
In my mind Sushi Samba and Nobu jut cant be competed with. They are too amazing.
But it always fun to try a new place.

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Saturday, we shopped (Eric did even a teeny bit, his eyes were glazed over at Saks for the entire 15 mins, but progress is progress. He's wonderful. I got to hit the oxygen bar, which is my favorite for the Vegas headache I always get from second hand smoke (ew people) Then Jodee and I got massages at the Cosmo spa which was delightful.
Then we hopped on the plane back home and were home in time to kiss our kids and tuck them in and be in there in the morning for Mother Day. A perfect weekend.


Tuesday, May 15, 2012



Let me first start of this post by making 2 points.
1. Lucy's name is not Lucille. I get asked all the time since its her "in trouble" name
2. the photo above might be my favorite photo of my kids. ever.

I thought to get back to blogging, I better start with a post of something I am excited about. And there is  not much that gets me more excited than my youngest little chickadee. And use the word "little" fairly loosely, as there is not much "little" about our Lucy Lu.. 
She is big talkin, big tricks, big thighs, big smile, big personality.
And we love her so much.
Since she has changed so much over the past little while, I thought I'd document some Lucy-isms.

Lucy has no "off button" she pops right up every morning and is pumped about it, and hits the ground running. Always wakes up with smiles and animated greetings for the rest of her family who prefer to wander around in sleepy silence for the first 15-30 mins of the day.


If you pull out your phone, a ipad, a camera, or anything that even remotely looks like one of these things, she immediately poses and says "chee chee cheese"
Speaking of cheese. Chuck-e-cheese. Its her favorite. Favorite word to say. Favorite place to talk about. She has only been once but it made quite an impact.


She has the best bikini bod for miles. And cant get enough pool time.
Obsessed with those cheeks. 

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And this one is for Grandpa Jim Kandell, we are bathing Ohio-style these days. In the pool.

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She is obsessed with Elmo and Elmo's World. Frequently she is yell-singing at the top of her lungs "Dats Elmo's Werld"and when I got her these sesame street "elmo/zoey" shoes she insisted she even sleep with them. and I love her for being this excited about a pair of shoes.


This photo is of Lucy visiting her babysitter Brookey after Brooke got her tonsils out earlier this month. When we got to her house, Lucy walked right over to Brooke's bed, lifted the covers and climbed into bed with her. Brooke was immediately healed.


When Lucy was about 9 months old, we started calling her mischievious alter-ego "Gemma" when she was making messes or being crazy, the kids and I would say "its not Lucy, its Gemma" or "uh oh Gemma is here" These days I'd say most days are Gemma days, so much so that we've given up on it being her alter-ego and just embraced Lucy's true busy-body self.

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With Ady and Max in school, dance, soccer, swim etc. I get plenty of alone time with Lucy. I am loving having this special time with her. We have our own adventures, visits to Grandma Meema's, shopping trips. park visits, and cartoon in mommy's bed mornings.
Its the best time. Her happy little spirit just makes my day better.


I love you Miss Lu.