A Daddy & Daughter Birthday Celebration

In April 2015, Dan turned 32 and Vivian turned 1. We celebrated in a big way with family and friends. It all started with this invitation:

Let's Celebrate!

Let’s Celebrate!

Vivian’s Nana, Aunt Anna, Grandma, and Grandpa flew in to join in the party festivities. Friends drove up from San Diego and in from all around Orange County and we ate, drank, swam, smashed cake, took pictures, and celebrated.

The Venue - The Arbors Club in Baker Ranch

The Venue – The Arbors Club in Baker Ranch

Drinks

Drinks

Food

Food

Dessert

Dessert

Gifts

Gifts

Vivian's Throne

Vivian’s Throne

Like Daddy, Like Daughter Picture Display

Like Daddy, Like Daughter Picture Display

Birthday Boy

Birthday Boy

Birthday Girl

Birthday Girl

Smash Cake Fun

Smash Cake Fun

Family

Family

Happy Birthday, Baby Girl! And, Happy Birthday Wonderful Husband! You are both so loved!

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A Sleepy Hike in Whiting Ranch

Now that we’ve moved, we have a new wilderness area in our “backyard.” We tried to introduce Vivian to it a few weeks ago on a morning hike. We arrived at Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park at around 10am. Vivian was fast asleep in her car seat after the 3 minute drive from our home to the park. We transferred her from her car seat to the Ergobaby carrier that I had strapped on and she didn’t wake up. We snapped a quick family photo before we started hiking.

Ready to Hike!

Ready to Hike!

We hiked all over the park for over two hours. Because one of the trails was closed, we had to backtrack quite a bit, instead of hiking a loop like we had planned. We hiked up and down and all around. And Vivian snoozed on, napping throughout the entire hike on me! I had brought a banana for her to snack on while we were hiking, but instead of her eating it, it got grossly smashed in my hiking pack and so I had to carry it in my hand during the entire hike so that it wouldn’t gross up anything else in the pack. Finally, Vivian’s eyes fluttered open just as we finished the hike. Whew – after all that hiking napping, she was thirsty!

Water Bottle Baby

Water Bottle Baby

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Vivian’s 2nd Easter

We have surpassed the “year of firsts.” Vivian is now beginning to experience her second round of annual holidays, starting with Easter. Last year, she celebrated like this:

Vivian's First Easter Basket

Vivian’s First Easter Basket

This year, our fast-walking, nearly one-year-old, celebrated like this:

Vivian's Second Easter Basket

Vivian’s Second Easter Basket

On Easter Saturday, our new community, Baker Ranch, hosted an Easter event with all sorts of kid fun like an egg hunt (see picture above), petting zoo, pony rides, small carnival rides, and, of course, a giant Easter bunny to sit with in a photo booth.

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter!

Petting Zoo Fun

Petting Zoo Fun

Pony Rides - Not Fun!

Pony Rides – Not Fun!

We had a blast at this event with Vivian and enjoyed attending it with our new neighbors. Vivian was not a fan of the Easter Bunny (are kids preprogrammed to be scared of figures such as these?!) or ponies (bummer!), but she enjoyed the petting zoo, little train ride, and egg hunt.

On Easter Sunday, we attended mass at Corpus Christi, our parish in Aliso Viejo, and then ate brunch at the local Panini Cafe.

Post-Mass Family Photo

Post-Mass Family Photo

Vivian in Her Easter Dress

Vivian in Her Easter Dress

Next up…Memorial Day? I think that the 4th of July will have more themed parties, outfits, and fun:-)

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ONE YEAR OLD!

We have a ONE YEAR old!

Happy Birthday, Vivian!

Happy Birthday, Vivian!

Look at this big girl riding her new birthday tricycle from Grandma and Grandpa. So cute!

Trike Riding

Trike Riding

More on this milestone later!

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Not All Museums are Boring

Last weekend, we braved traffic and drove south to San Diego to visit with friends and take Vivian to The New Children’s Museum. I have actually been to the museum before years ago with a friend and her two small children, but Dan had never been there and we were very excited to take our walking and exploring baby there. In fact, I was pretty giddy about it all. Unfortunately, Vivian wasn’t feeling 100% and, at not-quite-one-year-old, she wasn’t all that interested in a lot of the activities. But, we made the most of it and let her walk all around, play in the small-kid area, throw some building blocks around, ride on Rody for the first time, read some books, stare at her cute self in the mirror, make some music, and listen to some music. Our friend, Katie, was presenting in the Banfield Future Vet Program and so we listened to part of her presentation while eating lunch from the museum’s Green Bellies Cafe.

Family Museum Trip

Family Museum Trip

Driving a Car

Driving a Car

Playing with Building Blocks

Walking, walking, walking…

Playing with Balls in an Orange

Playing with Balls in an Orange

Riding Rody

Riding Rody

Looking at the Pretty Baby in the Mirror

Looking at the Pretty Baby in the Mirror

Following Daddy to the Reading Area

Following Daddy to the Reading Area

The museum wasn’t so big that it was overwhelming and it did have a lot of fun activities for kids. It will be even more fun to go back to it when Vivian is a little older and can participate in more of the activities (like sand play, painting, sculpting, building, etc.).

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Dana Point Festival of Whales

The weather in SoCal has already turned hot. Arg. We are not hot weather people. Give us cool temps, a warm sweatshirt, and some clouds almost any day! While you’re at it, throw in some mountains! But…we do live in coastal Southern California. So, sun and sand is what we get!

Sunny Day!

Sunny Day!

We decided to embrace the weather and nearby ocean last Sunday and check out the Dana Point Festival of Whales. The main draw to this event is the whale watching cruises that venture out into the ocean, but Dan was nervous about taking Vivian on an ocean-cruising vessel (even though she has learned how to float through swim lessons!). Dan went whale watching once as a child and got extremely sea sick. I’ve been whale watching three times as an adult and have never seen a darn whale. This time, we skipped the whale watching drama and instead walked around the harbor, ate a fish lunch overlooking the harbor entrance, and took a small boat ride from one end of the harbor to the other (Vivian’s first boat ride!). Welcome to summer (in March!) in SoCal!

Baby's First Boat Ride

Baby’s First Boat Ride

Festival of the Whales Boat Ride

Festival of Whales Boat Ride

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Chambers Family 2013 Photo Book

Yes, you read the title of this post correctly. 2013. Sigh. I’m two years behind (well, more like 14 months), but I finally did finish our 2013 family photo book. Without further ado, here it is:

Chambers Family 2013 Photo Book

Chambers Family 2013 Photo Book

I truly do love creating these photo books, even if they take me a long time to complete. It’s fun to look through our past in photos and remember all of the fun times we’ve experienced together. And 2013 sure was a fun year – lots of adventure, travel, and, of course, finding out that I was pregnant!

Now, on to the 2014 photo book…let’s hope that that one takes me fewer than 14 months to complete!

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