Thursday, June 30, 2011


We are going on a little trip so hopefully my Blogger phone app will work while I am away. If only my family could look this cute:


Another mother's list gem from today:

What would a 1 year old like to do?
6/30/2011 8:21 am

My nanny is going on vacation for 3 weeks in July/August so my husband and I are going to take a "forced" vacation to care for our soon to be 13 month old son. We are trying to compile a list of daytrips and activities in the Bay Area. What would a 1 year old like to do? He can walk if that helps.

I throw my hands up to the parenting Gods.

Monday, June 27, 2011


I want a stick vacuum. Is it really worth the cost or should I just continue on with my broom and dustpan? I hate how loud those things are. Does anyone love their "quiet" model?

Sunday, June 26, 2011


Today I am 33 (can't you tell by this picture?):

There was a great pre-birthday girl's night out last night to be followed by my first road bike experience on my birthday proper. Andrew rented a bike for me (the first and last time I will ride on a $2,000 bike) and we rode a 16 mile loop to the Alpine Inn for lunch. I had a blast, but was so focused on getting everything right and not killing myself. Clipping in and out went better than I thought it would, but I still almost fell over once. Shifting gears was way easier than I thought it would be. I have never learned the mechanics of a bike so maybe a YouTube video would help me conquer that fear!

Huffing and puffing:

Andrew is a great instructor and boy is it different from spinning in a class. They compare in some ways, but are totally different in others. It hurt so much to get back on the bike after our pit-stop. The bike wasn't properly fitted to myself so my shoulders and neck were really sore on the last half of the ride. Not to mention some other parts I didn't quite know I had:

My family made a great dinner and birthday torte to rival any birthday cake. What a great day.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Chose Us!

I didn't mean to, but I have fallen in love with another potential rental. This one is near nature, has 3,000 sq. ft. , and is in an excellent school district. It pushes the edge of our monthly rent allowance, would give Andrew a 20 minute commute, and doesn't have a garage. I am dragging Andrew back to see the house and hopefully woo the owners into choosing us as tenants. If it isn't meant to be then I will be fine (I promise). In one eyeball and out the other.

I want you:

Update: I got an email about 10 minutes after I posted this entry saying:
"Thanks so much for your wonderful message. Bill and I made a decision this evening to go with another family who viewed the property on Thursday. While we very much enjoyed meeting you and both felt you would be a great fit, we made our decision because this family was extremely eager and under time constraints to have a decision made."

The rental market out here is so wild! Time is money, baby. Andrew feels like we are in a bubble and that if we sit tight, we will hopefully avoid paying too much for a rental. I am going to listen to him and cut myself off from looking at anymore house rentals.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


I ran my first 5K last weekend. My friend Lisa, shown below in roller derby garb, signed up to run with me so we went to watch her Roller Derby bout the night before the big race. Roller derby is really entertaining and full of surprises. Go Sacrificers!

The action:

Ready for the race:

I started in the very back. My iPod died so I had to run without my Justin Bieber encouragement (wah!):

That race was tougher than I had imagined. There were rolling hills the whole time. Palo Alto is super flat so I am proud I ran the whole thing without walking. Lisa finished first in her group and third out of all the women (0:25:29). I finished with a time of 0:37:54. That slotted me as 94th out of 140 people total. My goal was to run the whole race and finish before 40 minutes. Two goals accomplished! I never want to run again:


Nick and Mia are in town for a week so we shoved them in the car and took them to the beach with us. Nick wanted warmer water, but I was so happy to drive away from the heat and enjoy the coolness of Pacifica.

I sat on the beach and imagined myself living in one of those sea cliff houses:

Our camp:

What cousins do best:

Nick pulling Blake along the shoreline:

It has been so much fun to watch these guys grow up. It is even more fun to watch them interact with my kids. Poor Mia has to endure story after story from Blake.

Monday, June 20, 2011


I finally finished editing Andrew's Wildflower Triathlon video. Once again, the soundtrack is me yelling into the microphone so turn down your volume on your speakers. I get into the moment and can't help myself. I can't believe Andrew finished this thing. I ran a 5K this weekend and can't even imagine running up huge hills after swimming and then biking. He finished 37th out of 202 in his class (Men 30-34), 140th out of 1,052 men, and 163 overall out of 1,801 men and women total. Good job Andrew.

The course:

The video:

Thursday, June 16, 2011

House To Home

Ellen and David have officially put down some roots.

The new digs:

One, cute kitchen:

The office (before):

The office (after):

The master bathroom (before):

The master bathroom (after):

The little ones played their hearts out while I helped unpack stuff:

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


The warm weather invited us outdoors for dinner on the patio. I look forward to a season of backyard BBQs and lots of pale, naked skin running through sprinklers.

Ellen planted some plants for me. Why are they the only ones that do well:

A failed attempt at broccoli beef (too dry):

Reade is weaned so uncork the wine:

Monday, June 13, 2011


Spring isn't over yet! We only have seven days until the summer solstice so enjoy the cool weather before it turns blistering hot. We went to the pirate ship park at Shoreline and admired all the baby geese. Too bad it is a huge problem and the golf course is going to start filling in the ponds to discourage breeding.

Proud mama and papa:

Enjoyment found in granules of sand:

These sailboats whispered out to me, "Come Shannon, sail with us." Not with kids I don't:

Friday, June 10, 2011


The Summer Reading Program at the library has begun so we are reading books like mad around here.

Our first stack:

Friends of the library:

I have fallen in love with the town of Belmont. I took the kids there to kick of all the reading and was pleasantly surprised to find a wonderful park behind the library. What a great combination of reading and blowing off steam:


Dear Public,
Please, please, please stop spelling congratulations with the letter "d." It is starting to drive me insane. You make driving around town kind of unbearable right now:

Here are some hints: Congrats! Graduation! Gratitude!

One edumicated individual!

Thursday, June 9, 2011


Outside of my Nana's backdoor looms a large ginkgo tree. I always admire the leaves both on and off of the tree. My last visit with her tree inspired me to attempt a ginkgo quilt for a new baby. I couldn't quite get the gingko leaves to look like anything but stingrays so I am abandoning that idea. Here are some ginkgo things that make me happy:

Bookends from Etsy:

A quilt from a great website called Ink & Spindle:

An access cover in Japan:

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Travel Bug

I have a bit of a travel bug biting me these days. If it weren't for small children, I would be a flight attendant so I could travel the world. This book helped put things in perspective because he often stated that people are so different, yet so similar everywhere you go. I recommend it as a fun book to read, but not one you drop everything for.

Here is the gist of the book: " After more than a decade of planning, John Higham and his wife September bid their high-tech jobs and suburban lives good-bye, packed up their home and set out with two children, ages eight and eleven, to travel around the world. In the course of the next 52 weeks they crossed 24 time zones, visited 28 countries and experienced a lifetime of adventures."

They attempted to do this on two tandem bikes!

See the author's website here.

I am now reading this book:


So far, his writing is super fluffy and wordy. Hopefully it will be a quick read. I am interested in traveling to Mexico, Central America, and South America someday so leave a comment if you know of any good pop-travel books I just have to read.

Sunday, June 5, 2011


John Stewart said that the Bush Administration gave him so much material to make fun of, he didn't even know what to do with it. That is how I feel about my mother's group emails. If you are getting sick of them just let me know and I will stop. From today:

"My 3 year old daughter and I were waiting to get her hair cut at Snip-Its in Town and Country Village in Palo Alto this afternoon. We had purchased some sidewalk chalk at the CVS there and decided to draw with chalk on the sidewalk just outside the shop, making sure to not get in anybody's way. After about 15 minutes, two security guards approached my 3 year old and me and told us that we had to stop because this was private property. I pointed out the number of children oriented shops right around us and asked if they were serious. They ordered us to stop immediately. My daughter was so upset. She thought she had done something wrong, and we weren't even able to get her the haircut.

I wish I had videotaped this incident so I could truly show you how ridiculous this was to have two security guards threaten my 3 year old. And I am pretty sure there was recently a court case that ruled that malls are protected free speech areas. But I didn't think of fighting it at the time because I was too shocked. If anyone else is interested, I have half a mind to stage a "chalk-in" with moms and kids from the mothers clubs to protest this policy. At the least, maybe we could mention to shopkeepers there and write a note to the owners of Town and Country asking them to reconsider their approach to creating a family-friendly environment.

Dear Ridiculous Lady,
I am guessing your child's artwork does not resemble that of Justin Beever (as seen below)?

It probably looks more like this:

Silly lady, we all know a place that charges $25 for a kid's haircut and offers mini-manis, make-up application, and hair wraps for five year olds may want to keep their storefront clean. Someone posted a comment saying, "Buy your kids an etch-a-sketch so they can play, but not deface property." Well said!

Saturday, June 4, 2011


Happy Birthday to all of those who celebrated an early June birthday. We got cupcakes to celebrate my sister's birthday. This last week was spent in Sacramento so my blogging has been on hold. I was having so much fun I couldn't even stop for a second to blog about it. My belly is full now and I really feel like Leann Rimes-ing it up now (I don't see the big problem, for the opposite could be worse?):