Thursday, December 18, 2014

Something Infinitely Interesting 12-13-14

Is there anything better than a family wedding? Last weekend the familia gathered at the bocce ball courts on a crisp and rain free Saturday afternoon to celebrate the marriage of Cassandra and Martin. 

My Nana and Tata were escorted in. How sweet is my cousin Leo holding our Nana's hand. It is still feels like we were all just little kids running around and now we are adults with kids of our own running around. 

My Tata was escorted in by the groom himself.

My family really cleans up nice! 

The wedding party walked in to the Jurassic Park theme song.

Then the music changed my beautiful little baby cousin Sassafrass walked in on her Dad's arm, looking stunning.

There were so many sweet touches throughout the wedding. Check out the bouquet. It was made my my Tia Angie (Cassie's Momma). Cassie loved the idea of a brooch bouquet and my Tia made it not just beautiful but meaningful. Earlier this year my Tia Angie asked all my Tia's and all us girl cousins to send her a silver and jeweled brooch. It felt like we all got to be a part of her day. A visual reminder that we love her and are there for her always. 

This was the moment that did not leave a dry eye in the house. As my Tio Javier walked Cassie up the the staircase he stopped and talked to both Cassie and Martin for a good few minutes. I am sure he was bestowing on them his blessing and his wisdom. Then he hugged them both. 

The wedding ceremony was short and sweet. Cassie and Martin were married by court about a year ago so this ceremony was a renewal of their vows and a chance for the rest of us to celebrate. The same judge that married them a year ago married them again. He is a family friend.

I was sitting right behind my Tata and his sweet hat. I know how much my Tata loves us all and this must have made him so happy to be there to see his Cassie marry her Martin.

Little Vivi with her Grandpa watching the bride and groom walk away!

Then the party started!

We have enough kids to put them all at their own table. Which they sat at for 3.5 minutes to scarf down some food. They spent the entire time playing with their cousins and dancing!

My sisters and I with the Bride and the Groom

Martin is part of a drift and grip crew called 805 Slide and they were there so happy to be there for their buddy. They came complete with engraved beer mugs!

 It was time for the first dance and this is when my favorite part of the wedding happened. As they walked out and the music started I immediately recognized that it was "Echo" by the best band in the world Incubus. Cass and I share a deep love for Incubus and as she was walking onto the dance floor she started looking around for me. From across the tent I let out a "wooo hooo" and threw up the rock hands to let her know that I knew! This is such a perfect wedding song for them.

When it was time for the Father Daughter dance my Tio was MIA. Everyone was calling for him and he comes running him and leaps in the air and lands with jazz hands. I love him so much he made everyone at the wedding cry and laugh. They danced to a song called "You're My Hero". Very fitting. 

All the single ladies hit the dance floor for the bouquet toss.

My cousin Betty was in it to win and and came out victorious!

There was also the traditional garter toss.

And then the dance floor opened up and as usual my familia set it on fire!

I love this photo of my sister Elaine and Kelly. Really sums them up.

Our cousins and Tia from Reno were there and little Sadie was as sweet as ever.

My niece Chone with Louie. I read the other day that older cousins are like celebrity status to little cousins. This is very true for my girls.

After the sun went down it got cold but between the heat lamps, open bar and dancing none of us minded.

I think Andres was the first and probably last person on the dance floor.

I wish we could have stayed all night long. As we walked the bocce ball court back to our car the sounds of the music and laughter literally made my heart grow 3 sizes, all Grinch like. 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Homeschool Week 16: En El Rancho Grande

Language Arts: This week Phi finished reading "Esperanza Rising".

This was the first book this year that I did not read along with her. She read it on her own and I was very impressed with her retention and comprehension. Reading comprehension was not one of Phi's strengths over the last few years, but this year it has really improved. I love this story (I read it years ago) and I am beyond thrilled that school are reading the story of a young girl from Mexico that has her life turned upside down when she moves to Central California to live as a migrant farm worker.

The novel study that the teacher used for this book did not focus so much on the story but more on the history of the farm workers in California as well and current statistics. Any book that lets me teach a little about Cesar Chavez and the Repatriation Act of the 30's is always going to be my favorite. When teaching about repatriation I immediately thought of that scene from Mi Familia with Jennifer Lopez. Of course I found a clip on YouTube. The first 5 minutes are a emotional example of what the Repatriation Act did to some California families. (Watch the  first 5 minutes!)

I cry every single time.  My guess is that we won't be starting a new book until after the holiday break.

Math: This week was 5 review worksheets with a fun holiday theme. Each page had about 7, 2 digit by 2 digit multiplication problems and 7, 3 digit by 1 digit division problems. Then you use the answers to fill in spaces in certain colors to reveal a holiday picture. Fun but still time consuming so we used one of Phi's homework passes and only did 4 pages.

Science: Review time! This week was just answering the end of the chapter review questions. Our chapter about earths surface is over!

Social Studies: This week we moved on to the next section and talked about what life was like on the big Ranchos and Pueblos of California. We talked about the differences and similarities and how by working together they helped to boost California's economy. I love how much I am learning with this homeschool thing! Did you know that a rodeo back then was an event that happened twice a year where rancheros rounded up all the cattle in the area and sorted them out to who they belonged to? Besides the questions she had to answer Phi made a triangle diagram showing a rancho and a pueblo. On the back she wrote about each location and about the jobs at each.

And because I could not get this song out of my head the entire time we were talking about ranchos...

Monday, December 15, 2014

Long Live Queen Lucy

My niece Angelica always keeps us on our toes. When we think she is going to zig she zags. Angelica is a sophomore in high school and has been in orchestra, the track team and the water polo team. She shocked us all when she not just tried out for the school play, but landed the lead. That's right, the freakin lead.

We all counted down the days until her performance and after we all stopped at the store to buy our star some flowers we headed to my old high school to watch the play. Angelica was playing the part of Lucy in the Narnia adventure of "The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe".

I have never read the story, watched the movie or had seen the play so to prepare ourselves I read the book to the girls a month or so ago. So we knew the story line and were beyond excited to see the production.

It was fabulous.

Angelica was freakin astounding.

Us adults were in complete awe in how natural and calm and cool Angelica was. I mean this kid has nerves of steel. The little kids, who already thought Angelica was the coolest person ever, now think she hung the moon.

Angelica continues to make us all so damn proud of her. Kid can do anything. 

Saturday, December 13, 2014


Happy Wedding Day Cassie and Martin!
We love you! 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

SB Zoo Day

We were really lucky to spend Thanksgiving weekend in Santa Barbara with my parents. As if turkey, the beach and movie night weren't enough we ended the weekend with a trip to the Santa Barbara Zoo. It ended up being the best zoo trip there ever. Something about the overcast weather must have brought out all the animals. 

Click Here to see why this was the weirdest penguin we have ever seen. 


Click Here to see an Instagram video of the girls feeding the giraffe. 

Of course these 3 are still my favorite animals!