I love this picture of Natalie on the beach. She's enjoying watching the waves (excited, throwing arms back) while her brothers and Tom are looking for shells in the background.
We didn't dress the kids in bathing suits because it was soooo cold. But we should have learned by now that just because it's cold doesn't mean our kids won't want to go in the water. Natalie kept saying, "Let's go get wet!"
Ok, at least roll the pants up...
Tom and Patrice got caught up on family news while Dominik walked circles around them.
At one point Lukas did have his pants rolled up, but why bother?
Now Natalie is finally happy! IN the water! Lukas and Konrad got so cold and wet that they begged to go back to the car and get changed into bathing suits. Natalie finally just wanted to be warm, so we sat in dry clothes in the warm car while the boys played in the cold Pacific a little longer.
Then it was off to see an alpaca show at the fairgrounds! Natalie kept saying, "what is it?" When I told her it was "an alpaca", she didn't quite get the concept...until I said, "is it a cat?" Natalie said, "no!" I said, "is it a horse?" Natalie said, "no!" I said, "It's an alpaca!" Then I think she got it. Here she is holding a furry toy alpaca, made from alpaca fiber, that Patrice got her. She definitely wanted to say hi to a lot of those alpacas. It was interesting that some of the alpacas were friendly and some were very afraid of people.
Here are Tom and the boys watching a group of alpacas being shown to the judges. We learned later that that group was being judged for "best in head"...so just the shape of their heads was being judged! So interesting to see people whose whole world is wrapped up in something I've never really thought about!
I love this picture of Tom and his three sons! Someday they will all be as tall as Tom!
Back at Patrice's house, Natalie enjoyed talking to the cat.
And the boys enjoyed Legos and Wii.
Konrad is really getting into Legos. Now he says, "when I'm 10, can I go to a Lego class like Lukas did?" He didn't seem to believe it when I said he might go next summer, when he's 5.
Dominik liked making airplane noises.
And somewhere between Natalie giving me zerberts, Tom caught us in a laughing game.
Today when it was too wet, we went to the mall and rode the kiddie train. This rainstorm was pretty heavy...and we got to drive home in it, too. For the second time, we drove home along the coast during a rainstorm, to avoid the crazy drivers on the freeways...so much more enjoyable.
Tom reminded me of two funny things Konrad said on this trip. While we were swimming at the hotel pool, Konrad said, "I don't want to take swimming lessons until my legs are longer!" thinking he has to be tall enough to reach the bottom of the pool in order to swim. I also let him drink the last little bit of my Mountain Dew, saying "It has a little caffeine in it, but that little bit shouldn't hurt you," so Konrad peered into the can, I guess hoping to see the caffeine.
Did I mention Tom's sister Chris was also there for part of our stay? Somehow she avoided the camera, so there is no photographic record of her presence, but it was so wonderful to have a fun family weekend with Chris and Patrice and her family. Can't wait to get together again in two weeks!