Dirt, Fish, Penguins, Bare feet, Chores, and Bikes


Dirt boy and his cars

Photoblog of Our Most Recent Adventures

Both Barefoot and Otherwise



They look sweet, but actually JD was being Mr. Get- off- this- Fish- It’s- Mine. I had to stand over it to make sure he didn’t whack anyone.


Monterey Bay Aquarium. All of the boys, with the exception of Joshua, LOVE this place.

Why would anyone not like it? Well….do you remember when Joshua was ages 1-5, and he was obsessed with ALL animals? Remember how he could tell you every species of whale and what it ate at age 3?

It’s exciting for him to see these animals that he’s read about all of his life, but once he has seen them, he’s done. No need to stare at something for 2 whole minutes. Let’s keep this show moving. That’s just Joshua’s personality.

He has to be constantly doing. It’s a wonderful trait. He gets that from Alan. Alan is so bummed when we approach a weekend with no plans made.

I am euphoric when we approach a weekend with no plans made.

In fact, in recent weeks, I have enjoyed a little front porch sittin’ every day.


HUGE sea turtle


Daniel’s favorite exhibit is the penguins.


Dan’s happy place

As soon as we arrived, Daniel exclaimed, “Penguins! Penguins! I want to see the penguins!”

It reminded me of when we took Joshua to an aquarium, when he was five. My cousin Amber met us there. We walked in, and Joshua was all, “Whale shark. Whale shark. Where’s the whale shark? I want to see the whale shark. Is it over there? Is it in here? Let’s go. Let’s go see the whale shark.”


Georgia Aquarium, 2011, with our cousins

Amber pulled out her map and said to me, “Well, we’d better go see this whale shark first. Let me find it on this map.”

Wise words. We would’ve been listening to that all day.

So fast-forward four years. We made a bee-line for the penguins. Everyone else’s wish list could wait. No one can obsess and broken-record insist like a pre-schooler!


JD and Lightning McQueen take in the soccer practice.

Did you know that JD takes his shoes off everywhere we go and walks around barefoot? I don’t let him do this in indoor public places (mostly), but walking in grass is good for you. No, you can’t convince me otherwise. It’s good for the soul, so he pulls off those shoes every time.


Ok barefoot on gym floors in just plain freeing.


California has the coolest playgrounds.


We ended up taking the pedals off of this bicycle to make it into a ‘glider’ bike for Daniel. He LOVES it. He glides so well that we now need to buy him a regular bicycle. He’s a pro now.


I’d love to pretend like this is my garden, but this is my neighbor’s. We are just learning from her!

My neighbor was out of town, so she let Joshua water them. This is the kind of chore that children LOVE. After all, there’s water involved!

We do actually have a “school garden” this year to go along with science. We are growing watermelons and potatoes, but I put them so far from my line of vision that I only water them about twice a week, not nearly enough. They looked so sad by the time Dan and Caleb watered them today.


They don’t love vacuuming, except for Daniel. There’s something about watching kids do chores that makes me giddy.

I’m convinced that hard work develops good character.


Caleb’s map. We are learning about the ancient world this year. Do you see the person that Caleb creatively colored into the map? Sure, you see the face, but do you see the hand waving too?


drawn by JOSHUA, not Caleb as I said before!!!

I can’t tell you how bad I felt about this mistake!

As I showed the boys the blog, I congratulated Caleb on this super-cool robot drawing. Caleb looked confused. “I don’t remember drawing that.”


“Hey!” Joshua chimed in, “I drew that!”

“Oh no! I’m so sorry, Joshua!!  I’ll post a correction on my blog. I feel so bad about that!”

Now that I know, it makes way more sense. This is more characteristic of Joshua’s art: asymmetrical and TONS of tiny details.


Caleb is a monkey-bar expert.


JD and I, enjoying our favorite beverages together.


I had no intention of sharing it with him, though.

Alan found this, EMPTY, on the kitchen counter and asked me, “Did you drink ALL of this?”

See, I never ever finish any drink. I don’t do this on purpose. It just happens, or rather, it doesn’t happen.

“Yeah. I guess I must have.”

“Are you sure Daniel didn’t drink any? Because it is 10pm, and he’s going wild up there.”

“Hmm. No, I think I drank it all.”



The next morning, Daniel confessed: “Me found your coke in the kitchen last night, and me drink it all. heheheheheheh”

“What! Well, that does explain a lot.”



We took the boys to the county fair. Dan was the perfect age. Caleb was able to ride almost everything. Joshua and JD were out of luck. They were either too big or too small for almost everything.


The big boys were so jealous. They wanted to ride it too.


the ferris wheel


view from the ferris wheel: city, ocean, mountains


golf course view from the ferris wheel


Daniel, reading his favorite Usborne books, while Joshua plays 3DS.

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I hope you all have a fun week! I hope it cools off for all of us soon! When did I become such a cold weather fan??


  • It’s settled. I am coming to visit and see that aquarium and visit your beautiful city. I will bring Coke and I promise to wear shoes!
    queenmommyjen recently posted…Why Play MattersMy Profile

  • Daddy-O

    I do see the man waving that Caleb drew on the map. Better yet, I also see that Caleb colored the Red Sea – red and the Black Sea – black. Makes sense to me!

  • Aquariums are my happy place too. I LOVE the Monterey Bay one. The Georgia one is my dream, because of the whale sharks. I would have been just like that – “where are the whale sharks? Can we see the whale sharks now? Let’s go see the whale sharks!” One track mind.
    And there’s an aquarium in New Orleans – have you been? It’s a happy, happy place too.
    Tamara recently posted…ABC, Easy As One, Two Three.My Profile

  • Lina

    Hi ! Thank you for these wonderful pics , cheered me up 🙂

    If you don’t mind I have a small correction to Egypt’s map.It is the tip at the South East .I know this is the most shown on the net but it is not right. This corner is not clipped , the South border goes straight to the Red , it doesn’t go up 🙂

    • Hmm. I’m sorry, Lina. Now this is an ancient Egypt map, not a current one, and the drawing is definitely not very exact, but I had no idea it was off. It just came with the textbook. My apologies.

      • Lina

        Oh my and I thought you’d delete my comment LOL
        Please don’t apologize,your map is the one found most on the net and it is new too.That is why ,as and Egyptian, I try to mention it whenever I see it.

        Thank you so much , you made my day 🙂

  • McMom

    Wow – so many great pictures…thank you! We all enjoyed them. JD’s hair looks platinum! Very California 😉 I love both of the turtle shots with all the little fish in them – they look like postcards. Taking the pedals off to make a glider bike instead of buying a special, glider bike? Wish we’d thought of that… Fun at the fair – I completely understand the big boys being jealous and wanting to get on the boat ride. That looks AWESOME. J and C look SO grown up in the ferris wheel picture. Wow. My goodness, that cast isn’t slowing Joshua down any, is it?! Oh, I just got an alert that you have a new post…I must go read it now!