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The Ants

Hank started T-ball this spring. When we found out all the “wee-ball” team names were bugs, Hank said ” Oh I hope i’m a Ladybug!”. He was a good sport about being drafted onto the Ants…

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The first few “games” were rough. Which was kind of baffling because it’s an hour of playing t-ball next to his Mom, Dad, Grandma and Papa J, which is his his favorite thing to do in a less formal setting. Luckily, Hank slowly realized t-ball was actually really fun.

His favorite part is having “fans”. Papa J and I left mid practice to grab coffee, Hank immediately noticed and asked Grandma “Where did my fans go!?”  

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It’s been nice meeting some neighborhood kids who live within a 5 block radius of our house and plan to attend Greenfield Elementary.

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T-ball is one of those sweet milestones that you look forward to when you’re pregnant with a boy.  Well, here we are and how time flies!

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Spring 18′

Spring crawled in pretty slow this year, but when it finally arrived it was warmly welcomed.
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Some highlights of our spring has been mastering scootering. Our goal is to reduce the use of a scroller on our miles of daily walking.

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We celebrated Hank’s best friends 3rd birthday with some troll hair, a piñata and a bouncy house. IMG_6317

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Grandma treated us to PAW Patrol live. It was Hank’s first theater experience, and he made it clear it was a bit overwhelming. He got really into the story line at points but  would also occasionally ask to leave….

Papa J, Tim and Hank went to a Phillies VS Giants game. Papa J’s friend is an announcer for the Giants so the 3 of them got royal treatment.

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Once Spring got it’s act together we’ve basically have been living outdoors. A long winter certainly makes you appreciate and savor these months!

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Easter ’18

The sun decided to come out for Easter weekend!

So naturally the cousins spent the entire Saturday outdoors playing PJ Masks.

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Easter morning we found baskets, went to church, brunch, and then to the O’Keefe’s for some egg hunting.

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Lives again our glorious King, Alleluia!
Where, O death, is now thy sting? Alleluia!
Once He died our souls to save, Alleluia!
Where thy victory, O grave? Alleluia! ❤

 

 

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Washington D.C

My Mom, Hank and I always try to plan a little trip during her spring break. This year we drove down to Washington DC.

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Friday we stayed with family in Vienna, a suburb of DC.  The Bohn’s made us a delicious dinner and to Hank’s delight had boxes of legos waiting for him. It was so good to stay up late around the dinner table, catching up and remembering. I just love them.

Saturday morning we had breakfast, said goodbyes and drove into the city. One of the best parts about DC is that all of the Smithsonian Museums are free!

 

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We started out at the WW2 Memorial making our way to the Washington and Lincoln monuments. It just so happened to be the “March for our Lives” protest weekend. It was very peaceful and neat to witness. Hank completely unaware, carried a stick (gun) pretending to shoot “droids” from the trees. It was tough explaining to him why it wasn’t the best time to be gunning down imaginary Star Wars characters. Ah Motherhood.

We had planned to hit up as many museums as time would permit, but we didn’t make it past the Museum of Natural History. It just had so many exhibits perfect for for a three year old boy.

As soon as we walked into the museum there was a map showing images of all the exhibits. One of the exhibits was called Human Origins and had a large handprint image. For whatever reason Hank became obsessed. He needed to see these hand prints immediately. We made our way to the exhibit where handprints and cave drawings were painted on a cave-like structure that you could walk through. It took Hank about 20 mins to build up the courage to touch these handprints.

We saw the dinosaur bones, large mammals, ocean animals and even made a trip to the gift shop. Before we left Hank requested that we go back to see the hand prints again. I don’t really know what was going through his brain but man, he was really into them.

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Late March in DC is  “Cherry Blossom Season”. I had hoped our trip would coincide with the blooms but with this winter, no such luck!  We did manage to find the one tree that was in bloom.

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We stayed in Dupont Circle and ate a great spot called Darlington House . For dessert Hank got donuts with a caramel dipping sauce and he put one in his pocket to bring home for Dada. IMG_5268

The next morning we had breakfast and drove North. It was a short but full Grammy-Hank adventure weekend!

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Farch

March is my least favorite month of the year. Everyone is ready for Spring and March just dumps snow and sleet on your dreams of warmer days.  In hopes of speeding along  this terrible month we packed March weekends with fun events.

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We had a cousin weekend up at Lake Naomi. A big snowstorm had just hit the Poconos, so we had ideal sledding conditions.

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Igloo forts and PJ masks by day and a fun game called  “Left Right Center”  by night. We played LRC with dollars and it was so much fun. This photo of my Uncle Bean pretty much summarizes the joy of winning 30 bucks.

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Early first birthday cupcake for Kenzie! Not into it… 

We also had a fun snow day in Philly where we sled at Clark Park. West Philly has some of the most beautiful Victorian homes and when they’re covered in snow they’re even more spectacular. Hank was pretty much done sledding after 2 runs. He was more interested in pretending to be a snow trooper.

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In March Tim also enjoyed Got Logan weekend down at Chesapeake Bay. This means we get a few days with Uncle Andy in Philly. Hank just adores Andy. You can see why….

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My Mom, Hank and I also planned a trip down to D.C during her spring break, but that deserves it’s own post!

 

 

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California Part 2

On Tuesday, we drove down to San Diego. We took a beautiful, coastal route through Huntington Beach and past a naval base. Hank was in awe of the massive battle ships.

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We stopped at Google to visit Uncle Andy and grab lunch. Last year Tim and Hank got a tour of Google’s campus while I was on a shoot, so I was excited to be a part of it this year!

 

Hank’s strongest memory from last year’s visit was the Nerf guns. Uncle Andy hooked him up as soon as we arrived. Hank protected us from all of those evil coding co-workers.

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To no surprise Google had a VERY cool space. Each floor had its own theme. My favorite floor had a vintage Palm Spring garden party vibe. The “cafeteria” was a super nice self-serve restaurant with dozens of stations. I enjoyed my Spanish pulled pork with manchego polenta. Hank had hummus-pita, pizza, and frozen yogurt with M&M’s. It was all free which was just amazing.

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After lunch, we convinced Andy to play hookie and leave work with us. Hank was so excited to see Grandma, Papa J and his cousins! That night we had dinner at Andy and Megan’s house. The cousins played outside while we ate dinner. It was such a treat to have built-in cousin-babysitters. Hank was in heaven.

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Wednesday, we drove to Coronado Island to explore the Hotel del Coronado grounds, collect seashells, picnic, and play some t-ball.

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It was unusually chilly (for San Diego) but at least the sun was shining bright.

 

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Hank was most interested in having a catch with his Pops

After nap time, we got to watch Hannah’s softball game. Hank just adores Hannah and was very excited when she got a hit.

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Thursday morning, we took a train to the Oceanside pier for lunch. To our surprise Megan pulled the kids out of school early and met us. So fun!

 

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Friday was our last day. We went to a beautiful playground with Ellie while Megan was substitute teaching.

 

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At nap time Tim and I left Hank with Grandma and drove to Carlsbad. We had lunch at Barrel Republic.  It was fun getting to sample beers I wouldn’t normally commit to ordering. The wristband you are given has a sensor which keeps tabs on how many ounces and what types of beers you sample. What a fun concept.

 

We spent our last night celebrating Papa J’s birthday, playing charades and talking.

 

Before bed on Friday night Hank asked if we could stay in California for “just 5 more weeks?!” I agree. I wish our yearly trip could last for 5 weeks. It’s so nice being together but certainly makes the distance between Philly and San Diego feel much sadder.

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Manhattan Beach

After last years work trip to California, Tim and I decided to try to make it a yearly February tradition.

We took an early flight out of PHL and arrived in LAX around 11:30a. We walked to the rental lot to pick up our car. We initially were given an electric blue Mustang convertible, but Hank made it known that he had his heart set on a red car (his favorite color).  The sweet manager let us switch cars. Hank ( +Tim) were super excited!

It was 70 degrees and the sun felt SO good on our pale, East Coast skin.

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We rented a cozy beach bungalow in Manhattan Beach through HomeAway . It was located 3 blocks from the beach and 5 blocks from the main stretch. It was great!IMG_3897

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Manhattan Beach is this magical urban beach. You can divvy up your day lounging on the sand, exploring the town, people watching on the pier and eating delicious food. It’s also a quick drive from dozens of fun spots.  To us, It’s a perfect vacation destination. If we win the lottery we’d seriously consider buying a tiny bungalow for the 1.5 million that they run ( !)

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One early morning (thanks jet lag!) Hank & I picked up hot doughnuts at a cute bakery  . We ate them on the pier. Hank’s chocolate covered face looked at me and said “Momma isn’t this the most best?”<3

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We played a lot of beach Star Wars. The shells we found took on the identity of different SW characters. Hank was a little desperate since we didn’t pack many toys 🙂

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We took days trips to explore Venice Beach, Rodeo Drive, and Hermosa Beach. Hank has become a great little traveler. We had such a fun and easy time popping around together as a family.IMG_4042

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We had delicious tuna Poke bowls in Venice Beach. 

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We all slept hard and were ready for part 2 of our vacation with Tim’s family in San Diego!

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