Friday, July 22, 2016

Summer Days 2016, Part Two

Summer is still going strong for us. We have done a lot of traveling this year, which has been fun. But we have also found plenty of things to do close to home.

We’ve gotten snoballs…..

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…..we’ve built Legos…..

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…..we’ve visited the fire station…..

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…..we’ve had TWQP at Nola’s house…..

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…..we’ve gone back to the library to get more books and to turn in their summer reading logs…..

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…..and we’ve painted toes. Kenny was not thrilled with this one, but the boys loved it. And at least I only let them paint one toe.

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We also met up with friends for a couple of playdates. We went to Matthew’s house for backyard water adventures on June 30. The boys did not want to leave; they had so much fun.

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Then on July 14 we met Dana, Diana, Claire, Colin, and Alcee at the Esplanade Grand Theater to see The Secret Life of Pets. It was so cute, and the kids loved getting to sit with each other. The seats were so roomy, and they even reclined.

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The boys also had sleepovers this week: Riley spent Sunday-Wednesday on the northshore at Grandma and Grandpa’s house. And Rory slept at Nola and Nopsi’s house on Tuesday.

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Plus, with both boys away on Tuesday, Kenny and I got to enjoy a night out by ourselves. We did a progressive dinner: appetizers at Peche, entrees at Brown Butter, and dessert at Angelo Brocato’s. It was all so good. Plus we saw an amazing sunset on our way home. I loved spending time with my baby.

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Less than three weeks of summer to go!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Our Karate Kid

Remember when Riley went to his friend Dominik’s karate birthday party back in December? He was a total pill during the party, but the whole time we were there I was thinking about how good it would be for him to start taking classes. His other friend Matthew started shortly after the party, but Riley refused to do it.

Fast forward to this summer and the 2-class special (plus a uniform!) World Martial Arts is running. I talked with Riley about how Kenny and I wanted him to try it, and he begrudgingly agreed. His very first class was free, and he did okay. He kept looking over at me with a sad expression on his face, but he did give it a good attempt.

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After class was over, Master Candace sat down with us and explained how everything worked. The students get a sticker after every class to put on a chart. When they reach 15, they get a certificate. When they reach 30, they get another certificate and a t-shirt. And when they reach 45, they get a trophy. Riley locked in on the possibility of a trophy, so we made a deal: he will take classes until he gets his trophy and then he can decide whether or not to continue.

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So…..we’ll see how this goes. He didn’t put up too much of a fight before going to his second class, but I know he didn’t want to go. However, he got his uniform at that class, which made him look the part. So darn cute.

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Right now Riley goes to class at 6pm on Fridays, which is an awful time. However, I think once he’s been going for a little while, he’ll get to move to twice a week, on Mondays and Wednesdays. That’s when Matthew goes, and I think it would be fun for him to be in the same class as his friend.

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The kids also get to play a game of dodgeball at the end of every class. Riley got out pretty quickly his first class, but he actually won his second time! I was so proud of him, and he was so excited.

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I did provide a small incentive for Riley to go to class each week. He gets to pick a special treat to stop for on our way home. So far we’ve gotten a Frosty and a sprinkle donut.

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I truly hope he sticks with this karate adventure. I think he could learn so much about discipline and respect. Plus he gets to do some ninja moves. That’s got to be a plus.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Grandma’s Birthday Trip, Part Two

On our last full day in the Lafayette area, we drove to Avery Island to tour the Tabasco plant and the Jungle Gardens. I hadn’t been there since we took a day trip 2009, with some of our friends who came up to visit us shortly after we moved to Youngsville. I was excited to go back and to take the boys.

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Tabasco has changed so much, and all for the better. It was a nice tour before but now it’s top-notch. There’s a lot more to it, including a nice visitor center with lots of history and displays, and there’s even a restaurant. We were so impressed.

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After finishing up at Tabasco, we actually went back to the house for lunch and some rest time. Both boys (and mama) actually slept! Winning.

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Kenny had to wake all of us up so we could go back to Avery Island to see the Jungle Gardens. We only had an hour before the gardens closed, so it was a very fast tour. But we saw some beautiful sights, including a pair of deer and an alligator!

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The weather turned slightly cool on account of a storm rolling in, and we almost escaped getting wet. But it blew through fast and we stopped back by the Tabasco Country Store (which was closed) to take pictures of the three boys in their new shirts courtesy of Grandma. They looked so cute!

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Now take a moment to look at Rory in the picture below. Love that kid.

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We drove back to the house so the adults could change clothes and then headed right back out for dinner. But we made a stop on the way: we passed by our old house! Seeing it brought back so many memories.

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Grandma requested Cajun dancing so we went to Randol’s, which has been in Lafayette for more than 35 years. Everyone had a great time. Rory much preferred dancing to eating his dinner, only he insisted someone carry him around on the dance floor. And that child is heavy. But I loved dancing with my boys.

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We were out way too late but had such a fun time. We grabbed breakfast the next morning just down the street from our house at Victor’s Cafeteria (best biscuits ever!), and then we packed up and headed back to NOLA.

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It was a great trip celebrating Grandma turning 70. I’m glad we got to spend some quality family time together, but I wish the ‘Woods could have joined us. Instead, they were off gallivanting in France. C’est la vie!

Happy happy birthday, Grandma. We sincerely hope you enjoyed your special trip!

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