Punk Rock Parents

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

An Added Bonus...

Louie and our CEO Jessica= BFF's
I am not a stay-at-home Mom, I am not a work from home Mom. Instead I have always labeled myself as a "Mom from Work Mom." 

What does that mean?

Well I have a very unique situation. I work for an exceptional employer who believes that children should be with their parents, even at the office. Both girls have grown-up in my office. When they were babies I had a pack and play in my office, a bouncer on the edge of my office doorway. Sometimes when I was on the phone with a client I was nursing a kid. There were times when they would literally nap on my desk.The girls are still here every afternoon with me. There is still a box of kids movies and a toy box here. Even now there is a small table with art supplies. The fact that I never had to put my girls in child care is a blessing that we will always be so thankful for.

The other day I realized another big bonus with having the girls in the office all these years. See I work for a company that has really worked hard to grow over the last few years. We purchased a competitor, we even applied for, was approved for and started a 30 student internship program. Now here is the bonus for my girls, this company is 100% owned and run by women. They are not just seeing their Momma solve problems, learn new skills and just work hard in general, but they are seeing our owner and her success. They can see how her hard work all these years has allowed her to work less and enjoy life more. They got to see how our CEO went from a consultant to running the show by working her tail off.

To my girls, powerful, successful women are going to be the norm for them. They won't assume that the owner of a company is a man, like 95% of telemarketers who call here do. They will grow-up to know that they can own and run successful companies because they literally grew up in the middle of one.  

Monday, July 18, 2016

Sea World with the Girl Scouts

Chances are you bought girl scout cookies earlier this year. You may or may not wondered where that money goes. Well for each box you buy about $1 goes straight to the troop you bought it from. Cookies is a major fundraiser for us and our girls work so hard. Each summer we plan a big trip for the girls all funded by cookie money. This year we bought each girl a Sea World Fun Card and a behind the scenes tour. At no cost to the girl scout! 

We went a few weekends ago and had such a great time. 

Of course the moment we walked into the park there was one place Louie just had to go to...

This would be the first of 4 different trips to the sea otters on this day. The last one was as we walked out of the park. She needed to tell them all good-bye and good night. 

We had a few more minutes to check out some dolphins before it was time to meet the troop.

We met at the group tour and were happy to be reunited with all our Girl Scout friends.

We have a really big troop and had a great turn out for this trip.

And off we went on a behind the scenes tour of Sea World. Here we go behind the gates!

We got to see these really cool archer fish. They would spit water to knock down food from branches. We got to touch shrimp, starfish and even jellyfish!

Even Phi touched a jellyfish.

We continued the tour by heading to the dolphins that are being rehabilitated. We passed by the flamingos on the way there.

It was amazing at how close we were to the dolphins. Of course we couldn't touch them but they swam right up to where we were standing. It was so cool until one dolphin got too playful and splashed half our group.

The last part of the tour was to the sea turtles. Here the girls got to be close and even feed lettuce to the turtles.

After the tour we stopped for lunch and then met up again at the Shamu Show! Still as great as ever. Before the show started they explained that because of concerns by the public the killer whale show is going to change. It will focus more on natural behaviors. Even the stadium will look different.

After the show we walked with some friends to the ride 'Journey to Atlantis'. Joey told Phi that she had to get on. She freaked. She cried. She hadn't been feeling well all day. But in the end she got on. What a trooper!

The day was hot so after the ride we headed to the Arctic exhibit to cool down. The ice wall helped a lot.

Just hanging in a polar bear den.

We also checked out the dolphin show. This was a really spectacular show!

The seals were hard to miss. They were so loud!

The last show we caught was the seal and sea otter show. This show was SO FUNNY! Of course the otter was a river otter named OP and Louie loved him. She even bought herself a new stuffed otter from Sea World and named it OP. As you can see OP is a DJ.

As usually we closed the park down and still did not see everything. The penguins were one of the last animals we visited. The last thing we did was ride the tower 350 feet in the air. It was awesome!

What a great trip! And with our Fun Cards we will be going back soon! 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Bass Lake 2016

This was our 29th year at what to the Gomez family is the happiest place on earth, Bass Lake, California. This year we went about a month earlier than usual and we rented a house on the North side of the lake near Falls Beach. As we counted down the days until vacation our only concern was water levels. With the drough in California we were afraid the house would be far from the water.

We had absolutely nothing to worry about. This was our back yard.

The drive was great and by Friday afternoon of day 1 we were settled into our rooms for the week and ready to get the vacation started.

As always the week went by way to quickly. We spent most nights playing Guesstures and Heads Up in the living room.

Of course one of the highlights is the big talent show. This year everyone came to win. Cari and Luis played a game where they let their kids put edible items in a paper bag, they were blindfolded and then they had to guess what they were eating. Yup pretty gnarly! One was a spoonful of ketchup. Oh heck no!

Elaine, Kelly and Ellie demonstrated that how only after 6 months of parenting they were able to understand every one of Ellie's cries. We all wrote typical baby dilemmas on a piece of paper. Kelly picked one and demonstrated the cry and Elaine had to guess what it was. Ellie just looked super cute.

Next up was Nana and Tata. After some set up they started the show. With Chone narrating they told the story of Little Felix getting ready for the school Olympics. As you can see from the picture below it was hilarious. For the first few minutes I could not even shoot pictures because I was laughing so hard. Louie watched the entire thing with a very confused look on her face. She could not figure out how they were doing this. I still don't think she has figured it out.

Phi and Louie did a skit all about a weird conversation with Louie. Every question Phi asked Louie answered by lip syncing a song. We had some technical issues with the sound but I was proud of the girls. They had practiced so hard!

Lili, Felix and Chone did a hilarious video about a yu-gi-oh battle.
You can watch it here. CLICK ME

The big winners of this years talent show were Nana and Tata. Their skit was hilarious. Enjoy the trophy for the year! We are going to get it back!

 One of the best parts of being together for the week is seeing the kids all together. This was The El's first year and she loved watching her cousins play and talk to her.

It feels like it was just yesterday that Chone was the baby we were passing around and putting into the lake for the first time. There are now 6 of these kiddos and they have my heart. Man I love these kids.

I think The El's is as tall as Chone's knee. And I bet she's taller than Louie in just a few years!

We all take turns making dinner. One night we let the kids make dinner. The made us spaghetti and meatballs with garlic bread. It was delicious.

 Our days were spent in the water. Lili and Phi were the last ones out every single day.

There were trips to The Pines and dinners at The Forks. We even celebrated Father's Day at Miller's Landing.

Being able to spend a whole week with The El's was fantastic. She is still so new and squishy. She is such a good baby. It strange because when Chone was little I was with her practically everyday. With Lili, Felix and Ellie the visits are too far in between.

I don't think there is anything more relaxing than laying in a floatie and just floating on the water. Usually with a drink in my hand.


I think that my family could go anywhere together and have a good time but we are so lucky to be able to go to this little piece of heaven on earth.

See you next summer.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Birthday Trip Day 3: The Monterey Bay Aquarium

The big event of the birthday trip was a day at the Monterey Bay Aquarium complete with a behind the scenes sea otter tour. We were all very excited!

We walked in and they gave Joey, Phi and Louie the cutest birthday buttons. Complete with a sea otter on them. We walked around a little before our tour and this place is gorgeous! Earlier this year a Momma Sea Otter came into the Aquariums tide pools and had a pup. Louie and I watched it on a live web-cam. It was cool to see it all in real life.

It was time for our behind the scenes sea otter tour. Now don't get too excited. We weren't able to hold or touch any otters. We learned all about how and why they rescue otters and how most are rehabilitated and sent back to the sea. We saw how they tag them and how they can track them. By tracking them they can see what things in the ocean are hurting the otters and can figure out the best way to save them. Louie's #1 priority in life is to help the otters.

Otter Skull
 We got to learn all about how the people at the aquarium take care of otters and otter pups. One interesting fact was that otter handlers have to wear a special outfit every time they interact with the otters. Years ago they found that otters were becoming attached to the human handlers and were not acclimating to ocean life after release. So now otter pups are being taught how to "otter" by seragate otters. The otters that are permanently at the aquarium will "adopt" the pup and teach it all it needs to know. So that otters do not grow attached to the humans who feed and brush them this is what they wear. Phi was our model.

See that tank behind the girls. That is where the otters that are being rehabilitated live. We even got to see the Otter ICU cameras where we saw the tiniest fluffiest otter.

After our tour we spent the rest of the afternoon exploring the aquarium. We saw all kinds of cool things.

This place is amazing. There are so many tanks to explore and animals to see up close and personal. I really loved this place and the girls had such a great time.

The aquarium closed at 5pm and we got ready for a long drive to Santa Barbara. Lucky Louie had a new otter to keep her company.

We spent the next day in Santa Barbara with my parents. This trip was fantastic. It has been weeks since the trip but the girls have not stopped talking about it! We are thinking next year we might go to San Francisco!