“The cure for anything is saltwater – sweat, tears, or the sea.”

I love that quote by Isak Dinesen. Especially after just having returned from a spur-of-the-moment road trip with our little crew, where we spent a few days at the beach. If we could live close to the beach, we would jump at the opportunity. But who wouldn’t?

One of my favorite nights from our trip was when we grabbed bean, cheese, & potato burritos from Pedro’s in San Clemente for dinner, and watched the sunset. That’s right. Bean, cheese, and POTATO. Nom nom. It exceeded my expectations, and now I’m drooling over my keyboard.

While we were in the drive through line, Dave asked me to take a picture for him of this sign. And then he totally photo bombed it.

Best bumper sticker

I love San Clemente. I’ve loved it since I was a teenager when one Saturday my sister and I went to watch my Dad run in a race. That early morning I was exposed to one of the best beach cities (and lots of cute surfer boys) that exists. I’ve loved it ever since.

I never get tired of watching the sun set at the beach…

…especially when I’m with my favorite people. Dave is experimenting with growing his beard out (feel free to cast your vote in the comments – yea or nay?).

I loved watching Inez play in the ocean.

My Gwenie girl is growing teeny freckles.

The wind kicked up so I bundled Olive up. This is a rare site to see Olive in anything besides a “pretty dress.”

I had to showcase our mexican blanket. It just makes me so happy to put it to use at the beach (where it belongs).

I couldn’t get a good picture of Clara since she doesn’t stand still longer than half a second. And this picture definitely reflects that – great light and setting with a busy baby that won’t look at the camera.

I can’t post about our trip to California without mentioning some favorite people of ours, James & Melissa. James and Dave were roommates at BYU, and all four of us were in the same singles ward. They were our gracious hosts while we were in California, and were so nice to let us and our crazy kids invade their home for six days! It was even their 10th wedding anniversary on this day! See? Nicest friends, EVER.

The girls had a lot of fun collecting rocks and playing in the water. This is their James & Melissa’s daughter, Natalie, with Inez (I didn’t get any pictures of their other two kidlets).

Our impromptu trip was over before we knew it and now we are back home. Little does Dave know, but I’m already planning our next trip back.

More photos & blog posts to come about our trip!

My Name is Holly

And I’m a Disneyland junkie. Also, I’ve shamelessly dragged my family into this addiction.

We had kind of a crazy summer. So a few weeks before school started I told Dave to take some time off work because we were going to be headed to Disneyland for a little R&R before school and schedules ruled our lives. It was a very short trip, but totally worth it (as always).

Here are some shots that I took just around the park.

Years of people passing by and unknowingly touching this knob has made the grain of the wood stand out. It’s weird, but Dave and I love this. Anyone recognize what/where this is located?









I love my baby’s cute legs and feet sticking out of the stroller. They go straight out like this when she’s excited about something.
(I like to think she’s just excited about being at Disneyland.)

The obligatory picture from Dumbo.

Gwen always asks to see Winnie the Pooh. Since it isn’t usually very long, that’s the one line we stand in for characters—especially since you get to see two-three characters after only one line. Plus, I just can’t say no to that face.
Well, I can say no and do say no to her quite often. But in this instance, I can’t.

I love the coy little smile she gets from seeing Tigger.

Inez and I happened upon Sulley at California Adventure. Inez was really sad that she was unable to get his autograph (his hands are hard plastic and huge) but settled for a hug where she nearly disappeared into his fur.

On our last day Gwen wanted to wear her Alice costume.

As we were leaving the park, the Disneyland Marching Band was out by the entrance/exit along with Alice and the Mad Hatter. They pulled Gwen out of the crowd to participate. It was really cute and I took about 5,000 pictures.

This was the Band Leader, the Mad Hatter, and Alice discussing what song to play/sing with Gwen.

Afterward I asked Gwen if she felt a little shy. She said, “Yes. I was a lot shy.”

‘I’ for Inez

‘G’ is for Gwen but since there is not a ‘G’ in California, we tried to get Gwen to make the ‘C’ look like a ‘G’. We weren’t very successful.

‘O’ is for Olive.

And a close-up on Miss Olive.

‘L’ for Lesue

We loved our hotel, which was a really good thing because this was our first trip in about five years where we actually went back to our room to rest. I was extra tired being in my first trimester during this trip.
Do you see the hidden mickey in the logo?

Until next time…

More, Please.

Well, that vacation was either way too short, or it passed by really quickly. Probably both.

I want more.

More time with Dave. (I love having him all to myself)
More visiting with family and friends.
More of these cute and happy girls. (They fight a lot less when we are on vacation)

On the drive home, I kept thinking these three things:

1. I don’t want Dave to go back to work. Ever.
2. I don’t want to face all the laundry that awaits me.
3. I want to eat another tigger’s tail.

More pictures from our vacation to come after I come conquer the mountain of laundry that awaits me.

coronado island

I really miss the beach. Even kelp covered ones.Our thanks again to the Whites and Barkers for a great time on the island. I have been feeling very nostalgic as I look through our vacation pictures. One day at the beach just wasn’t enough for me. Dave still isn’t sold on the beach now that we have kids which makes it that much harder. But that is true about anything in life. Every now and then I get this longing for it, living here in Utah. Landlocked.

I miss the warm sand in my toes when laying in the warm sun. I miss the sound of the waves crashing. When we were in Coronado and we could hear them at night, it took me right back to BYU-Hawaii. What a lucky little 20 year-old I was to be living there well, for many reasons. But one of the things I miss the most is falling asleep to the crashing waves.

I miss how good hot dogs and s’mores are when you roast them on the beach. I miss watching the sunset, and the sunset at Sunset for that matter. I miss cutetanlines. I miss the smell of coppertone mixed with the smell of the beach. I miss standing in the surf and feeling the sand being pulled out beneath you. I miss the beachy breeze. I miss it all…the good and bad, tan and sunburn.

Here is my nephew Charles’ recent experience at the beach. I wonder if he misses it at all.

What do you love and/or miss about the beach?

sea world

One of our days on vacation was spent at Sea World. Inez really loved watching Shamu as well as the dolphin show. Since returning home, she has named this little wooden dolphin Dolly, after the high jumping dolphin from Sea World. I love Sea World, it makes me miss living near the beach and also reminds me that I once wanted to pursue oceanography. That is until I actually took oceanography at BYU-Hawaii and there was way too much chemistry. Ick.

Here we are feeding the bat rays. Inez was really excited to do this until I fed the first one and kind of let out a little squeal because it was a bit startling.

Feeding the dolphins

sprinkles of makaafi

So when we were in So Cal, we visited Beth, my very dear and old friend (as in longtime, not age), and her cute little family.

So we (as in the Lesues) visited them (as in the Makaafis) whilst in the real O.C. We let the kiddies run around awhile and then we went to Sprinkles for some delicious fatness. After that, we headed on over to the Newport Beach Temple where the children were perfectly reverent angels. Except that Inez stole a rock from the fountain. They are all glued down or sealed or cemented or something, but she must have pulled one loose somehow. Oops. Maybe we’ll put it in the fountain of the Provo temple.

Here are some pictures of the Makaafi children, who should all be modeling and putting their parents through vacations and houses and such. My children couldn’t look whiter next to them, and rightly so since that is what they are. Beth’s children are half Tongan and once again, rightly so since their father is Tongan himself. Ilai, Inez, Gwen, Eden and Anela (or “Vanilla” as Inez called her).

I was also priveledged enough to taste some taro (is that right Beth?) with coconut milk. It wasn’t too bad. The coconut milk helped, I think.

Then Sprinkles…

It looks like someone is presenting them in this picture, but it is just Inez going for the one with the candy dot on top. The flavors are (left to right, top row): banana, chocolate peanut butter and dark chocolate, (bottom row) black and white, another chocolate p.b., and vanilla. They are very rich, and very yummy.

And not too far from Sprinkles is the Newport Beach Temple.

Beth and Fo’ou posed for the Prom

Here’s our perfectly reverent angel.

the whites

Well our little vacation was spent mostly with James, Melissa and Natalie White. James and Dave were roomates at BYU, and all four of us were in the same singles ward. Over the years we have forged many memories. To name just a few there were many BYU Football games, a Dave Matthews concert where some drunk girls wanted to fight, and transporting a mattress across town on the top of their jetta without rope. We got minor cases of frostbite(not really) as this was in the dead of winter and we had to hold it, with our hands, on top of the car from the inside. Did I mention there were no ropes? Ironically, Dave and I witnessed a very similar scene in the streets of San Francisco. I think it was near Lombard Street. Or maybe I just think that would make for a better story and my memory is thus.

James and Melissa are also responsible for introducing us to Settlers of Catan and Apples to Apples. We once spent a whole weekend in Park City playing “Settlers” as we nerdily call it, and consequently haven’t played together since. There was a lot of talk of playing it during this vacation, but it never came to pass. We did however watch a pretty bad movie, Because I Said So. But sometimes the bad movies make for memorable memories, aww, girrrll! Am I right guys? We also rented Fletch, because to everyone’s surprise I had never seen it. Add this to the list of movies that I haven’t seen and thus am shocking to others, like Saturday’s Warrior. Well you can continue to be shocked because I fell asleep and still haven’t seen it.

Besides hanging out, watching movies, making cookies and reminiscing about random topics, such as Small Wonder, we spent Memorial Day on Coronado Island, staying with James’ grandparents who live down there and just happen to be the nicest people on the planet (I want to move in with them). We went to Sea World and Disneyland as well, which I’ll post about later.

Here we are at the park with the coolest bubble machine. We were the most popular kids there.
Natalie LOVES Minnie, hence the dress.

Memorial Day on Coronado Islandand it was perfect. No crowds and not too hot. The girls lead us down to the beach.

A true girl, Natalie loves shoes.

We had a lot of fun with the Whites and look forward to our vacation with them next year! Well at least I had fun, but I’m just one person.

on the road

I don’t know what it is, but I love roadtrips. Admitedly more fun without kids, but we managed anyway. Eating, singing, reading, watching DVDs, playing road games, eating both good snacks and junk food (by the way, I’ve lost two of the five pounds that I had gained!). The music we listened to varied from Weezer to the Beach Boys and Ben Folds to Justin Timberlake (a guilty pleasure of mine). And my car is still in desperate need of a good cleaning, inside and out. Here are a few snippets from I-15 (and two from the 57).

The mandatory stop at In-n-Out Burger.

Gwen with her fast little hands is learning quickly that there is much out there that tastes better than baby food.

I have to say that there are some really dumb people out there. This actually looked worse if you were driving right behind this person, but once we moved over into the other lane we were a bit nervous to be behind this loaded truck again.

These are for you James! I saw a flyer at church for Mormon Night at Angel Stadium. I totally miss that.

unexepected goodies

We came home to a few good surprises…
A wonderful welcome home sign (a Kewish family tradition) by Mom, Dad, Jon and Ashley. Replete with an illustration of the Matterhorn and “Harold” the monster because that was the first roller coaster that Nezzie conquered—albeit with covered eyes and head ducked down the whole time. By the way, I like that Dave and I are an afterthought.
A fully bloomed Amaryllis, which is a bit of a late bloomer as they usually bloom in the winter! I think I need to use the word “bloom” once more in that sentence.
A beautiful newly painted room, where Gwenie is currently residing.
And my beloved measuring cups by Nigella from Brooke.

She took my wish list seriously (hint, hint everyone). Brooke, YTB. Seriously. And they are so beautiful, I almost don’t want to use them.

Especially because the first time I use them it will be for my yummy chocolate chip cookies. And the problem is that I just can’t make them right now because I gained FIVE pounds over the last week & a half!

Vacations are fun, but it’s great when you have wonderful things and people to come home to!

we’re back

We got in last night at about 11pm.
We are tired, dirty, disorganized, adjusting, sleeping, needing to unpack, do a TON of laundry, charge cameras, dump down photos and video and of course, blog.

So, as soon as the first nine things are taken care of, the last one can happen.

And that is something I can look forward to.