Monday, February 28, 2011

Piti Guns (And a Desperate Plea for Help)

So, it's been a week since I managed to blog.  It's been roughly a week since Michelle left and I started easing back into the real world.  Lemme tell you, life in the real world? With four kids, ages five and under? It's not as fun as you'd think! I know, shocking, right?

Grandpa Kenny is here, and along with "fold nineteen loads of laundry," I have "sort through the four thousand pics I took of him and the kids and edit the good ones and scrapbook them and get them on the blog." I mean, seriously.  I LITERALLY do not understand how I'll ever be caught up on anything ever again for the rest of my life.  Grandma Jane comes this Thursday, and as long as there's another grownup  in the house, I at least feel safe, I feel like probably no one will die or be injured too severely or anything dramatic like that.  But she leaves on the 16th, and I just don't know what to do.  I'm short of breath just thinking about it.  How do I get up, get out of bed, brush my teeth, get the kids breakfast, get them dressed, pack the big kids' lunches, get everyone in the car, AND TAKE CARE OF A NEWBORN???!!!

Holly? Robin? Anyone else out there with too many kids? How do you do it? And I don't just mean in a philosophical, pondering-the-meaning-of-life sort of way, I mean literally, what are the logistics? How do you physically accomplish the day to day tasks?

I bet step one is: stop spending so much time on the computer.  Yeah.  I'll get right on that guys.  Thanks for the tip.

Anyway.  Here's some (unedited) pics from Sunday, we drove around the south end of the island, but before we did that, Nick and the kids and Grandpa Kenny hiked up to Piti Guns.  Mama and Daisy stayed in the car, eating a bottle and reading Matched, this new (young adult) book I just started.  So far, not overly impressed.

I LOVE this shot.  Just love love love it.

I also love this one.  But not as much as the one with all the kids.
I set the camera on RAW, in the hopes that I would magically be able to fix that over exposure business that's making everyone bright white, but alas, I cannot figure it out.  I found the "exposure" toggle, but when I fiddle with it, what I want to happen is NOT what happens.

That's my daughter.  Riding the gun.

Oh, I did have time for ONE teeny tiny edit.  I cropped Ava so I could zoom in on her.  Now, in reality, she actually has her father's warm, happy, outgoing personality.  But, without knowing her, just looking at this picture- wouldn't you think she's just like ME?!?!?!?  Minus the silly bands.  I'm way too cool for silly bands.
All right.  Maybe tomorrow I can post the other eight hundred and eightteen pictures we shot on Sunday.  You think I'm joking? I'm not.  We actually shot eight hundred and eighteen pictures.  I weeded it down though.  Don't worry.  And technically, it was only four hundred and nine, because when you shoot in RAW, it saves two pictures.  But still.

And I'm dead serious about the advice, guys.  I need some help.  I don't know what to do, how to feed the baby and get everyone dressed and load the dishwasher and brush my teeth.  And I haven't even begun to THINK about what happens at the end of the month when I'm a single mama again.  Oh Lord. Better start your prayer chains now ladies.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Talofofo Falls

disclaimer: TONS of pics, very long post.  Read at your own risk, but if you ARE going to skip it, at least scroll down to see the falls.  You'll be glad you did.  Have I ever steered you wrong?

We finally made it to Talofofo Falls yesterday.  Let me tell you, this was a little piece of Guam at its Guamiest.  The falls were breathtaking and gorgeous and everything, but the park? Ahh, the park.  Let's just say there was a reason we were the ONLY people in that little death trap of a carnival.  But the kids had a blast.  Kids are so dumb.

First up? Bumper cars.  Ugh.  My neck hurts just remembering it.
Ava thought that these bumper cars were the BEST. THING. EVER.

Now, in case you can't tell from her expression, we were actually a little concerned that we'd have to give Ava CPR because she was laughing so hard.  She LOVED those bumper cars!!!

Next, we headed for the teacups.  Against my better judgement, I went on them.  Erph.  I just threw up in my mouth remembering it.  But again, Ava was having a blast.  Not as much fun as the bumper cars, but still a lot of smiles.  I love that kid.

Then the "train." Ahh, the "train." I'm using air quotes, in case you were wondering, because the "train" was a riding lawnmower pulling two platforms with four park benches bolted to them.  In addition to the driver on the lawnmower, there were two guys walking next to us, sort of holding the train and doing everything short of actually pushing.  Seriously.

 While on our "train ride" we saw this most INTERESTING curiosity: Love Land.  Not one hundred percent sure what it is, but hey, anywhere you have to be nineteen to enter sounds sort of fun, right?

NOT in Love Land...

We had to ride these little sky car type things to get to the falls.  Now, everyone knows how scared of heights I am.  You know how people say "oh, I'm not afraid of HEIGHTS, I'm afraid of the FALL."  Well, those people are stupid.  I'm afraid of being up high.  It has nothing to do with the idea of falling.  It's the actual BEING UP HIGH.  So I was freaking out.  But I did it, and man, it was totally worth it!!!

Now, these pictures? They don't show you ANYTHING like what it really was.  It was amazing!  Sort of made Guam worth it.  Almost :)

Now, I have to admit that the hike around and the stairs and the heat was a little rough on my ripped apart abdomen and my hormonally confused body.  But it was worth it, I'm serious!!!

We also hiked down to Yokoi's cave.  For you non Guamies, Yokoi was a Japanese soldier during WWII.  He was hiding out on Guam, and the war ended, and no one told him.  So he kept hiding, in this cave, living off the jungle.  And he kept hiding and hiding, not wanting to be taken prisoner or surrender.  For...wait for it...twenty eight YEARS.  That's my ENTIRE LIFE.  I guess he started with a few other guys, but they died pretty soon into things, and so he was all alone, scared of being taken prisoner, not knowing the war was over. Isn't that HORRIBLE?  So he's a pretty big hero for Japan, so all the tourists I guess want to see the cave.  Only, you can't actually see it.  Sort of a let down.

BUT, the signs...oh, the signs.  They put a smile on my face.  Is that wrong?
Really.  Read it again, nice and slow.  It'll be worth it.  There was one that was even MORE fun, but I couldn't get a good shot.

And after that little detour, we went to the other fall.

And that was our Saturday!  How fun, right? Seriously, it was so pretty there!!!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

New Pool

Sorry to those of you in the real world, but here on the other side of the planet, down on the equator, we headed to the pool the other day for a little sunshine.

Daisy was NOT impressed.

To tell you the truth, neither was her mama.  Now, everyone else just LURVS the new pool.  And why wouldn't they, it's a fantastic, huge, gorgeous, multi million dollar endeavor.  My problem? I liked the old pool.  The baby pool was fenced in, so once I closed the gate, my kids were safe, and CORRALLED!  Being corralled is sort of important when the little people outnumber you four to one, especially when deep water in involved.  You know? The new pool has TWO baby areas, a little sunken hot tub type thing, and a gently sloping shelf area in the big pool.  Neither one is fenced, and they're not separeted from each other at all.  So my kids want to run back in forth from one to the other, or the big kids want to be in one while Warren wants the other.  It just sucks.  AND, at the old pool, the lifeguards couldn't see the baby pool, so we could play with toys and eat snacks and just have fun.  At the NEW pool, you can't play with ANYTHING, not even dive toys or kickboards or ANYTHING fun.  I'm just waiting for them to say no goggles.

But you want to know what I REALLY hate about the new pool? And no one else cares, so I have no choice but to complain to my (four) loyal readers?

All that money, all those hundreds of thousands of dollars for this new gym and pool...and the library still uses a card catalogue.  The librarian has to go to the card catalogue to see if they have a certain book when I call ahead, even though I shouldn't bother because they don't have anything that wasn't published at least fifteen years ago.  When I do make the trip, park a hundred yards away, cart my kids through the various construction zones to get to the library to use the card catalogue to check out a book that was published while I was still in junior high, after all that, the librarian has to take the card out of the back and stamp the due date into it.  Stamp the card from the card catalogue.  But there's money to spare for a new pool that we DIDN'T need and I don't like.  I mean, I understand that not everyone likes to read.  BUT COME ON!!!

All right, I'm done.  I know I'm the only person on this ENTIRE island that would rather that money have gone into the library, but whatever.  I don't care.  This is my blog!

But the big kids had a blast, obviously.

And there is a pretty neat splash pad, which the old pool obviously didn't have, so that's actually pretty cool.
I got my tan on, sitting next to the pool.  Scott asked me why I couldn't go in the water.  What do you say to that?  I just said "that's the rules after you have a baby." He seemed satisfied.  I love that kid!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Groovin' with Warren

Warren has ALWAYS been a terrific dancer.  He gets his mad dance moves from his Mama.  At the Christmas party we had with the boat, he stood by the stereo for at least twenty minutes, moving his head and his elbows separately of each other, grooving to a beat that was apparently quite different from the music we were all hearing.  But he LOVES to dance, and he has such a blast, and he dances pretty much every time he hears any sort of music.  Which is pretty often.

This particular dancefest was at the Chamarro Festival last night.  I have a feeling I didn't spell that right.  Anyway.  For the first time, instead of just snapping pictures of the kids while they thought we weren't looking, at least five different tourists came up and asked us if they could take pictures of each other with Ava.  What? We said yes, but I just don't get it.  I mean, what do they say when they get home and download those images? "Hey, here I am with this little white girl we saw one day, isn't she cute?" It's just WEIRD!!!

But they were nice, and Ava was loving it, so no harm no foul, I guess...until her image shows up on a Japanese game show or something...

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Chuck E Cheese's

 It's more than a little absurd to me that Guam has a Chuck E Cheese's, but no Walgreens.  You can hop over to Tiffany's for some jewelry, but you can't buy Kleenex Cottenelle toilet paper.  Say what?

But they DO have a Chuck E Cheese's, so we occasionally take advantage of it.  And with Michelle, when we're only outnumbered four to three, we thought it was as good a time as any to go.

Can you think of a game more tailor-made for Warren than Wack-A-Mole? Me either.  Of course, it's called something else here, but it's Wack-A-Mole.  And he LOVED it.

Didn't QUITE get the gist of ski-ball.  He thought it was perfectly acceptable to climb onto the strip where you're supposed to ROLL the ball, lean over, and drop the ball right into the hole.  Hey, I guess if I could have gotten away with that, I would do it too.  Great way to rack up seven thousand tickets so that you can finally buy that tootsie roll you've been after!!!

Just joshin.  We used our seven thousand tickets to buy these awesome plastic star glasses.  I mean, THAT was eighty bucks well spent, look how cute they are!!!