Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Santa Cruz - Wednesday (Aldo's, Seymour Discovery Center, Beach & S'mores)

Wednesday was probably our coldest day in Santa Cruz - but we all just bundled up a little bit more.

We started the day with a Santa Cruz tradition - breakfast at Aldo's!   Aldo's is right on the pier and has delicious food (they were actually featured on Diners, Drive-in's & Dives) and it's such a gorgeous setting to sit outside and eat.  We were the only ones on the pier outside and I think everyone really liked what they got!

 Here's our whole group!
 
 Jon, Diane & Rebecca
 

 Rebecca & Kyle (you can see the fog that was there that morning)
 

 Kirsten & her 2 babies - McKinley & Paisley
 
 Emily & Brynlee
 
 Jared & Beth
 
 
After breakfast, we walked down the path to a lighthouse which is close by.  They have huge rocks and huge cement anchor looking things that the kids wanted to climb on (with the mothers consistent "be careful" warnings).
 








After the lighthouse, we went to the Seymour Discovery Center, which is a small aquarium.   The kids seemed to really like it and they had some neat things to learn.   We decided to sign up for a tour (which shows you more bones and 2 dolphins that they have - which you can't take pictures of).





 Hailey spent nearly the entire time touching the starfish.
 


 

 We left Hailey with Rebecca & Diane during the tour and she was in heaven when they discovered the puzzles they had there to do.
 

 


After that, we drove home and the kids headed to the beach.  I stayed behind to get some laundry caught up and then headed over - on my way over though, my kids were coming back - it was just too cold.  Kirsten still got some really cute pictures though!


 Hailey R - we were lucky enough to have Jake Siegle (the Cowden's good friend) bring us some wet suits to borrow - you can see how big they are on the kids, but they didn't seem to mind one bit.
 



 Karli
 



That night, we had promised the kids that we could make s'mores.  It was freezing though and we just didn't feel like taking them anywhere in the cold do to them.  So, these 3 had a good attitude when we suggested that we do them over the grill in the backyard and they got everything ready (including napkins on the plates).


 Cute McKinley
 





 
The week was going by so fast!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Santa Cruz - Tuesday (Peyton Manning Day, Henry Cowell State Park & the Beach)

We had a great day on Tuesday as well!

These two cute boys coordinated their days and chose Tuesday as Peyton Manning Day and both wore their jerseys!




In the morning, we got ready and drove to Henry Cowell State Park.  It's a beautiful Redwood Forest with an easy little hike that was perfect for our group.  The trees are breathtaking and the kids had fun walking around.


 Our stair-step picture:  Emily (14), Lindsey (12), Ethan (12), Jack (10), Brynlee (almost 10), Hailey (almost 9), Kate (8), Kyle (7), Karli (7), Hannah (almost 6), Tyler (5), Hailey (3), Jared (2), Paisley (2) & McKinley (1)
15 kids in 3 families - not too shabby!
 







 These 2 searched for banana slugs!
 
 

Proof that I was there - being behind the camera means there's not many of me.
 







After our hike, we went to a picnic table area and had a picnic lunch.  So tasty and so fun!  Then, Ammon led the kids (and some of us grownups) in a fun game of "Thick It" which included hiding and trying to tag the person who was it.



 Aunt Rebecca was the group's nurse.  She was always ready to Neosporin & bandaids for scraped elbows and knees.  This day, she fixed up Karli and then fixed up Hannah!  So, so great!
 
 
After we got home, it was beach time!  As usual, the kids would be between digging in the sand and running/playing in the freezing water!


 Brynlee
 
 I think this is Jon helping Hailey R.
 

Ahh, perfect day at the beach!