Holiday Weekend Happenings

Did someone say 3-day weekend?

Give me additional time, I’ll find a way to fill it. Which is the perfect segue for this blog post: Give me a chipped pool deck and I’ll find a way to fill that too!

The nice thing about buying a house that doesn’t have too many renovations is that you experience and appreciate a lot of the original character. However, lack of upkeep by previous owners can lead to too much character. For example, shoddy looking backyards.

Our pool is great–don’t get me wrong. 110+ degree days for weeks at a time? Water is a must. Heck, get me a kiddie pool or put be downwind of some reclaimed water sprinklers and I’m peachy-keen.

Because we get so much use out of the pool, we thought it would be wise to take the time and repair some of the cracked and chipped coating. Not only is it an eyesore, it makes the pool area less cool and more…poke-y. Pools shouldn’t be poke-y.

So Step 1? Break apart all that is cracking or chipping.

After a few good smacks with the hammer.

After a few good smacks with the hammer.

I got on my hands and knees, crawled around the pool and tapped with a hammer the areas that were loose, cracked or crumbling. Like a really boring version of Whac-a-Mole. Some areas surprised me at how big they became and it was really obvious this home repair was long overdue.

Step 2? Scrub-a-dub-dub.

All hands on deck!

All hands on deck! A toe decided to photo bomb the image.

Graeme took the liberty of utilizing laundry detergent, a scrub brush, and elbow grease to ensure that all areas were prepped and ready for repair. After you’ve crawled around a pool on your hands and knees for a few hours, you realize, “I don’t think I want to do this again anytime soon.” So he scrubbed, and cleaned, and rinsed, and perfected his technique.

Step 3? Pretend you know what you’re doing!

Pool patched!

Pool patched!

The picture above isn’t the final, dried image you’ll see when all is said and done. But it’s a start. The holes are patched and after about 3-hours, we really nailed down the texturizing technique. Basically, if I were a Sim, my skill points would have increased tremendously.

If you’re looking to do the same, I bought the patch product here locally. It’s called EZ Patch 2 and we had to go back to the store for a second bucket. They also created this handy dandy video which provided me with an over-inflated sense of confidence in my patching abilities, but it all worked out in the end. The product sets quickly, so we had to be careful not to take on too many areas at once.

Step 4? Swim!

Really, that’s what we did next. We have to wait a few days before painting it. But golly wow it’s going to look sharp. To quote The Dude, I think the newly patched and painted pool deck will really tie the room together. We’re hoping to have Step 5 happen this weekend. And hopefully a repeat of step 4.

Baby Shower for Squirt

Babies.

Even when they’re not mine, I’m still excited to celebrate them.

So I do.

So I did.

My sister-in-law and her husband are expecting their little squirt within the next six weeks. It’s an exciting time for the family and Squirt will be Max’s second boy cousin. I anticipate a lot of testosterone-fueled family holidays in the near future. And trips to urgent care.

My SIL decided she would like to recreate a sailboat/nautical theme for her bundle. Fine by me. Growing up  with what most psychiatrists would call a “grossly obsessive affinity” for everything related to The LIttle Mermaid, I was more than happy to oblige.

Obviously, I got a lot of my inspiration from Pinterest (you can see my board here) and relied upon the dexterity of my husband and mother-in-law to complete many of the crafts.  I would have recruited Max, but everyone knows toddlers are terrible at glueing eyes onto toothpicks.

From chicken salad crab croissants, to sailboat jello, to narwhal watermelon carvings, overall, everyone was impressed.

Baby Shower Goodies

Although everything went as planned, looks can be deceiving. Have you ever had your toddler foil your plans by puking in the car on the way to the party? Me too! About as exciting as it sounds. Luckily, Max was perfectly healthy (a touch of seasonal allergies and car sickness) and we were able to clean up the mess with a quick trip to Target for additional wipes and clothing.

God bless the bullseye.

Next on the agenda: Wind! Yes, beautiful mother nature and her ability to predict when I’ve purchased tablecloths to use outdoors. Luckily, my BIL’s mother came up with an ingenious plan to tape both ends of the tablecloth together underneath the table.

All in all, it was a success. Family was happy. People were fed. Babies were celebrated.

Chicken Salad Crab Croissants

All eyes are on me.

Yes, that is a watermelon carved to be a narwhal.

Yes, that is a watermelon carved to be a narwhal.

No, they are not perfect. Can anyone say, "Holy Wind!"?

No, they are not perfect. Can anyone say, “Holy Wind!”?

 

Exacto knife, poster board, favor bags - check! With the wind, it acted as a real sail.

Exacto knife, poster board, favor bags – check!

Homemade food, nautical theme, and a touch of lemonade on a warm spring day.

Homemade food, nautical theme, and a touch of lemonade on a warm spring day.

Luckily, my husband is a graphic designer. Custom designs = free for me!

Luckily, my husband is a graphic designer. Custom designs = free for me!

Chocolate + pregnancy cravings + local bake shop = baby shower success!

Chocolate + pregnancy cravings + local bake shop = baby shower success!

Max was infatuated with his new friend. They pick bark off trees, ran in the grass, and giggled for hours.

Max was infatuated with his new friend. They picked bark off trees, ran in the grass, and giggled for hours.

After a long day? Me too.

After a long day? Me too.

The best part? My sister-in-law and her husband felt special. Anything we can do to help them usher in this new era as parents is a gift. Despite wind, puke, and exhaustion, it was a great experience.

Fabulous.

Fabulous.

The Hunt Family Visits San Diego.

After growing up in Tucson, any opportunity to be near water is one I will happily take. So, when my in-laws decided to celebrate 50 fabulous years of marriage with a trip to San Diego and invited us to be a part of the getaway, there was no way we could say no. Also, road trip? Yes please. I love taking the scenic route…although I had never done so with an 18-month old in tow.

Luckily, the interstate stars were aligned and we survived the 6.5 hour trip with nary a toddler breakdown. It might have something to do with the fact that we packed 50 days worth of activities and snacks.

Part of the reason I love road trips is that you never know what you’ll stumble across. Take for instance metal dinosaurs at your average Gila Bend gas station stop.

Triceratops...more like Tricera-gas-stops!  No? Too far a stretch?

Triceratops…more like Tricera-gas-stops!
No? Too far a stretch?

Max is unsure about baby Rex.

Max is unsure about baby Rex.

Graeme, his mini-me, and Mr. Rex

Graeme, his mini-me, and Mr. Rex

Typically when I take a trip, I do it on the cheap. But thanks to the generosity of my in-laws, they booked us all at the Loews Coronado Bay hotel. Also thanks to them, I have a new standard for vacationing! Jacuzzis, on-site restaurants, strolls to the beach, magnificent views. I’m pretty hoity-toity now.

The one thing we all looked forward to the most was the San Diego Zoo. We each had a favorite animal we wanted to visit, and after six hours, half the park covered, and loans taken out to purchase zoo food, we all walked away pretty content.

Karen likes to study the visitors.

Karen likes to study the visitors.

Who can roar the loudest?

Who can roar the loudest?

After the zoo, we visited neighboring Balboa park sites, rode an old-timey carousal, and acted as if we didn’t have a care in the world. Next up – dinner! On the way back to the hotel, we decided to stop at 1887 on the Bay for sustenance.  Although Max can sit still for nearly half a day during a car ride, once we sit down to dinner, all bets are off. From what I remember of dinner, and the 2.5 seconds in which I scarfed it down, it was pretty freaking delicious. Maybe I’ll start being annoying and snapping photos of everything I eat so that I can have some sort of lasting memory.

Another vacation highlight was visiting the USS Midway Museum. It’s a pretty incredible place featuring a ton of history. From bunks, to planes, to sheer magnitude, this vessel is a must see. And I’m not even a military or history buff.

Max demonstrating the sound a car makes.

Max demonstrating the sound a car makes.

Stud muffins.

Stud muffins.

Finally, my favorite part of any coastal visit – the beach! Loews is only a 5 minute walk with direct access to Silver Strand Beach. This beach pleased my newfound hoity-toity senses. The weather hovered around 65 degrees our entire trip, so although we didn’t swim, we definitely enjoyed some restorative beach time.

Max seriously digging the ocean.

Max seriously digging the ocean.

Father/Son silhouette anyone?

Father/Son silhouette anyone?

Max's favorite part was feeling the waves head back to the ocean.

Max’s favorite part was feeling the waves head back to the ocean.

Basically, I can’t wait to return.