Memorial Day Weekend

The house was unusually quiet this weekend.  Max and Olivia left on Friday morning for their annual trek to Elev8 (youth conference) in San Diego with our church’s youth group.  Rudy has asked about them several times a day and will be excited to have them home later today.


Rolf took advantage of the near-empty house to begin the bathroom remodel.  With guests arriving soon for Max’s graduation, this project will need to be done in stages to insure we’ll have a functional  bathroom when the house is full but he got a big chunk of the work done.  Yay!

Rudy helping Rolf in the demolition phase of the project!

Rudy and I didn’t have time to lounge by the pool for very long this weekend as there was lots to celebrate in the lives of our friends…

Rudy’s 2nd grade general ed teacher, Mr. Latta, is also a musician so Rolf, Rudy and I enjoyed a rare Friday night out at a nearby microbrewery to listen to a little Johnny Cash!
Rudy definitely found his happy place when he elbowed his way in on a group of familiar faces from school. 😉
On Saturday, Rudy and I went to the grand opening of the newest Kyle’s Kitchen location in downtown Santa Barbara! We are so excited for our friends the Ferros and the success of their special restaurant concept…expansion is happening quickly as there are plans for a THIRD location to open later next year on the other side of Goleta!! Woo Hoo! Yay Kyle’s Kitchen!


Rudy got to help Kyle’s mom and sister pass out fresh baked cookies to the customers enjoying their lunch.
Rudy and part of the Ferro family! Congratulations dear friends…may your hard, hard work and heart for the special needs community be rewarded abundantly!
We left the Kyle’s grand opening early to make it in time to see a little friend’s dedication at Goleta Beach! It’s always fun to see good friends.


And, of course, a good bit of yesterday was spent watching the Indianapolis 500…one of Rudy’s favorite traditions.

I’m so grateful for this long weekend filled with things we love to do and people with whom we love to do life…I am blessed to live in my comfortable home, in a beautiful town that is part of a larger, wonderfully diverse, complex country that I love dearly.  I am grateful we set aside a day every year to remember those who gave their lives in service to our country and it’s citizens but after experiencing all that we got to experience this weekend, I’m feeling strongly that the impact of the collective sacrifice should be felt EVERY day…everyday we exercise the freedom to remodel a bathroom, start a new business, worship God on a public beach, go to school, make friends, travel, write blogs, have a family, enjoy life, etc, etc, etc…you get the idea.   So, to my fellow Americans who gave their lives while in active military duty, thank you for your part in firmly establishing our safety, freedom, and democracy!  We won’t stop being grateful.

Field Trips and More

This past week was a week full of field trips for Rudy so we were glad his day at home to rest up seemed to help him recuperate from the episode he had last weekend.  His school nurse called me on Monday to come pick him up early from school because he was ill, he stayed home from school on Tuesday and hit the ground running Wednesday on a field with his typical 2nd grade classmates to the Sea Center on Stearns Wharf.

Mesmerized by the jelly fish.
Petting the leopard shark with nurse Evelyn.
Rudy in the shark tank!
Checking out the sea stars…
…and other tide pool creatures.


I try not to dwell on comparisons too much but it is always a bit shocking to me to see how much smaller Rudy is when next to kids his age!
Rudy getting some Mr. Latta love and a high-five from a classmate!
Sandwiched in between two fun field trips was Rolf’s 50th Birthday!!!! Woo Hoo…He’s like a legit adult now.
Friday included a trip to our local bowling alley with Rudy’s special needs class!
Having fun with friends!
Rudy cheering for a classmate while waiting for his turn.
Helping teacher Tracy keep score.
Getting a little help from mom.
And this is how his week ended…falling asleep in the 7 minutes it takes to drive home from school.

We’re down to the last 13 days of school…why does it feel like EVERYBODY else is done with the school year but us?  Summer can’t come soon enough!!!

One 1/2 Way Around the World, One Close to Home.

Our week with Wilson whizzed by much too fast and now he is off on his ROTC adventure to Madagascar.  He flew to Ft. Knox early this morning and will head to Madagascar from there.  I admit I’m a bit jealous.  I turned down an opportunity to teach English on the Comoro Islands just a hop, skip and a jump away from Madagascar when I graduated from college…never did make it to that part of the world and now my son is headed there…a full circle kinda event, I guess.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, Rudy came down with a little bug over the weekend so we’ve stayed close to home the last few days.  He’s home from school today to rest up and, hopefully, kick it once and for all.  We’re down to the last three weeks of school and we all hope to finish the school year healthy and strong!

Rudy had an episode on Saturday morning that spooked us a bit. He woke up agitated, body shaking and his breathing was labored. His O2 sats were so low, we couldn’t getting a reading on the pulse oximeter. We ended up calling our nurse neighbor over to help us assess the situation. Some Tylenol and a dramatic bump in his oxygen level helped get him calm and stable. Everyone ended up in our room at one point just chatting and I couldn’t help taking a picture!!
Rudy perked up enough on Sunday to serenade our neighbor who was celebrating his 98th birthday!!!
The 8 year old celebrating the 98 year old!! Happy Birthday Norman!!
Bye, bye Wilson! Safe travels! Take lots of pictures!!

Speaking of taking pictures, I took some of Max at the beach last week for graduation…Wilson and Rudy joined us.  🙂



The countdown to graduation is ON!  🙂


Prom Week 2017

Last week was unusually busy with all kinds of prom prep as I was on the After Prom Party committee…a party hosted by the parents after the dance at our local bowling alley from midnight to 4am.  From the looks of it, the kids (72% of the senior class and their friends!!!! woo hoo!) had a great time and the parents survived pulling an all-nighter!  Ha Ha

And, of course, there was lots to fill our week that didn’t relate to prom…making the week go that much faster!!!

We enjoyed some summer-like weather last weekend making it virtually impossible to NOT head to the beach for a quick getaway.
We also officially opened the pool…this is what the first swim of the season hangover looks like!
Olivia’s last Lacrosse game of the season was on Thursday…
…with lots of brother-love!
Rudy’s school carnival on Friday was loud and crowded but he finally warmed up to the fun!
Saturday was reserved for corsage making and prom dinner set up!
Aaaaaaannnd, they’re off!
Dos Pueblos LAXers!!!
Rudy and the Rat Pack



Pre-prom shenanigans!…



…as well as dinner…(Super fun!!!)
After Prom was a family effort, for sure, with Livy at home on Rudy Duty and the rest of us volunteering at the event…best photo booth EVER!

Oh yeah, Wilson made it home too!  He got home late Friday just in time to jump into all the weekend activity.  He’s going to lay low this week (and by “lay low” I mean “play Mario Kart with Rudy”) and get ready for his departure for Madagascar next Monday…Wow,  kinda wish I could stow-a-way!