Sunday, August 28, 2011

on a budget . . . buy invites at costco!

I'm trying to figure out how to write short and to-the-point blogs. However (as my husband would point out)...I'm kind of long-winded. Trying to get over it...I just like giving lots of details (even though you could live without some of them).

I discovered for Judah's first bday that you can print custom invites from costco's photo center. So, he's turning 2...and i did it all over again. It's only $14.99 for 50 bday invites and envelopes included. That's a steal (especially since you can customize). They are 6x7.5 and they even throw in a few calendars w/ a photo of your choice for free. Under the "more" tab they have an option for a custom template. Check it out if you are into designing your own cards...

Take a look at Judah's 2nd bday party invite...=)
Thinking of Joe (I blurred out the contact info...)

Note to self too: I did a little survey from moms with kids on facebook as to what time to throw a bday party. There was an overwhelming 10am-12pm we are going to try it out...I'll let you know how it is coming soon before baby #2 hopefully!

Ps: Thanks again to Alyssa Ballisty for shooting the photos of Judah in the laundromat!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

San Fran LOVE with Judah . . .

One of our favorite places to vacate is San Francisco. Joe and I often take mini-weekend trips there for anniversaries, time to get away, and family shopping trips as well. This last trip was different though. It was all about seeing the city from our almost 2 year olds eyes (22 months). We discovered new places, and experienced love for boats, buses, and otters like never before.

I have some of the fondest memories taking family vacations. Some were elaborate (Disney World, Hawaii) and others were simply time-well spent together. Either way, my parents made it a priority to make "us kids" a priority. This is a tradition that Joe and I decided we would like to continue. The biggest trick is that you (Joe/I) often need a vacation from the kid-focused vacation too (all something we will figure out how to balance in time).

There is nothing that moves me more than seeing Judah in his element. I love watching him experience life, knowing he is loved, and seeing joy written from cheek to cheek. We only took two days in the city, but they were packed from sunrise to sunset. We started our journey with a trip to Discovery Bay Museum. Neither Joe or I had ever heard of it before this trip, but after looking online - we had a gut feeling it would be something Judah would love - and LOVE he did. There were things to explore, touch, see, climb, get dirty . . . all things a 2 year old live for. We got to play in water, paint, push tractors, look for treasure, jump on trampolines, mini-golf, see curious george, train tables, boat tables, and more!

We timed our departure perfectly so he would crash on route to our next location - lunch on Union street. Since becoming a mom, I've discovered a couple boutiques in San Fran that I love. We always hit up this fun urban area of the city to eat and shop. Judah slept so it felt like a date for Joe and I. Some of our favorite places: Jovino (great breakfast/coffee), The Brixton (food), Bubble (baby boutique), Sprout (baby boutique). There is so much more, but those are a few that never fail us.

A trip to San Fran isn't complete without a trip to Fisherman's Wharf. Judah loves seeing the boats, the sea lions (which he calls "otters" or "doggies"), the candy store, good food, etc. So we met up with one of Joe's old college friends/family and had a blast exploring with them and catching up! We didn't take any pictures which I'm now bummed about. It was the perfect ending to a great day. We were wiped out.

We woke up in Union Square (used priceline to get the hotel for the first time- not too bad) and headed for breakfast. Judah could hardly sit through it - he new we were going somewhere new and exciting again. The San Fran Zoo! We had never been and he loved it. They have a great farm space, all the animals he can name - we even got to go on our first "choo choo" ride. We did whatever made him smile and wore him out!

All in all- it was our first family vacation success! We were exhausted and grateful that we got to experience life through Judah's eyes. Nothing like getting to hang out with all the attention on him. A great memory before Ireland arrives...