Saturday, December 27, 2014

Merry Christmas!!

The kids could hardly wait for Xmas morning...  After leaving milk & cookies for Santa, and a few carrots for his trusty reindeer, they continued to beg to stay up to see him!  Xmas morning is such an amazing, magical event at their ages.  Mia couldn't believe that Santa truly knew she wanted new gear for dirt bike riding with Daddy!  Aubs got all of the doll paraphernalia she could dream of, and Bubba got Ninja Turtle gear, along with the 4,000 piece Lego Death Star that he's been dreaming of all year...  All were happy!

Vegas, Baby!!

For the past 2 years Daddy & Mia have done an 'alone' trip to Vegas on the slowest weekend of the year in Vegas, the weekend before Xmas.  We've had so much fun that Mia decided this year the whole family was going...  The Twins absolutely loved seeing the volcanos, pirates and fountains. We went for gondola rides at the Venetian, ice skating at the Cosmo, dinner at Bellagio, and culminated with the dinner show at Excalibur which featured fighting knights, real kings on horseback, and jousting.  The kids thought they had died and gone to heaven!  They are already planning the itinerary for next year!  Here is Bubba doing his best cool guy impersonation during his first limo ride.  Note that the fedora did not come off all weekend...

Ice Skating in Vegas!

The kids absolutely loved ice skating in Vegas! The roof top pool of the Cosmopolitan was converted to a winter wonderland. Ice skating, fire pits and smores...  What more could a kid ask for!!  As expected, Mia has become damn near an Olympic skater and pushed her brother around all weekend.  So sweet!

Happy Hanukkah!!

The kids absolutely love Hanukkah! Mommy developed a system of wrapping a giant moving box, but leaving the bottom open.  Each night we place one gift on the floor, cover it with the box, and on the count of 3 they each lift their box to uncover their surprise!  It's so much fun, as you can tell by the smiles of anticipation above...

Dance Class!

Aubs continues to be quite the ham!  This semester she chose an after school extra curricular activity of dance.  Here she was dressed up at her recital, and quite proud to be showing Mommy & Daddy, and Aunt Cathy, all that she had learned...  She is a quite challenging child, but unbelievably cute and sweet!  We love her deeply...

Ostrich Farm!!

On the way home from Tucson at Thanksgiving, we stopped off at Rooster Cogburn's Ostrich Farm!  It's a roadside attraction we've driven past hundreds of times, but never made time to stop for.  This time the kids made sure we did...  After petting donkeys and deer, and Aubs getting bitten by an ostrich, we found the Lovebird enclosure.  Daddy & Mia quickly decided that being trapped in a cage with hundreds of aggressive birds was, well, for the birds!!  So Mommy ventured in with the Twins, who were holding cups of nectar, and were quickly inundated by Lovebirds.  Aubs was in heaven, as her obsession with all things living and breathing has only escalated of late.  Bubba was a great sport to support his sister's odd obsessions!  A really cool experience...

The American Bumble Bee!

Mia continues to thrive in school.  Her charter school is extremely rigorous and challenging, and a perfect fit for her personality.  The Twins will be joining her there next year, and well, let's just say we're not as confident that it will be the perfect fit for them...  She was assigned the American Bumble Bee for her insect segment this month, and had to recite an interesting fact to the class each day.  The culmination was making an actual bee, and presenting it in a showcase to the entire school.  Here she is with her crafty bumble bee!  She takes such pride in her work...  Something Daddy doesn't recall ever doing as a child!!

Happy Thanksgiving!

All dressed up and ready to head to Grammy & Papa's for Thanksgiving!!  Fred & D'Anna's family joined us for a long, relaxing weekend in Tucson.  The kids are growing so quickly now, and Bubba has found his groove...  He loves to do his hair and put on a tie for any special event, including a normal school day!  He's quite the handsome little man.  Aubs has decided she is done being told what she can and can't wear, and selects all of her own outfits now days. Thankfully she has moved past the 'lesbian living in NYC phase' and is selecting really cute outfits! Mia, as always, has her own incredibly cool style that can be best described as beach chick.  They are all amazing kids!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Uncle Chris & Cousin Michael Visit!

This weekend Daddy's brother, Uncle Chris, & cousin Michael came out to AZ for a long weekend visit.  Life gets so busy, and goes by so quickly, that we were lucky they were able to make time for us.  All of the kids fell in love with Uncle Chris, and Michael was such a hit that Aubrey began telling 'Mikey' how much she loved him, and Brandon insisted he sleep in his bed...  We had an absolute blast and the kids swam for about 30 hours over the course of the weekend.  We can't wait for their next visit!

Pizza Night!

Whatever the Lovell kids don't get in life, that won't include love from their Momma! Stacy continues to amaze all who are lucky enough to interact with her.  Her depth of love and ability to give endlessly is nothing short of amazing!  One small example of this is 'pizza night'.  This is the kid's favorite time, as they get to make the pizza...  With light supervision from Mom, they proceed to utterly destroy our kitchen!  Here they are joined by Kiera, Mia's best friend.  We are so lucky to be able to partake in their childhood and relive everything that makes life worth living!  They are little angels.

Crazy Scout!

Aubrey continues to be the light of our life, and the thorn in our side!  Brandon & Mia have continued to be easy, happy, fun little kids!  Aubrey?  Well, let's just say that she continues to be spicy...  I can hardly wait to see what the teenage years will bring!  That said, we will always love her and all her craziness.  She certainly keeps things fun!

Happy Halloween 2014

As the kids get older, these holidays get crazier and more fun!  This year the kids went through a total of 13 different costumes before settling on their final choices.  Momma was accommodating as always, and in the end they chose old costumes we already had laying around, and ignored the 13 new outfits Momma bought! Mia was a Ninja, Aubrey was Arielle and Brandon was Buzz Lightyear! Yep, that's the story of the Lovell household: restraint & sacrifice!  All kidding aside, this was the year that Mia finally honed in on maximum candy collection, while the twins ate all of her candy as quickly as they could...

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Fall Break in Aspen!

For the kid's fall break we went to Aspen with Marc, Elie, and the Johnson family!  Being the fall season it wasn't crowded and the weather was absolutely gorgeous...  We played in the woods, visited the local nature center, and even rented a RZR and went to the top of Aspen Mountain!  The kids had a ball and didn't want to come home.  Special mention goes out to Aubrey for her off roading style prowess!!

Halloween Prep!

The Twins have been anxiously anticipating their favorite holiday, Halloween!  They've been trying many different costumes, yet somehow Aubrey always puts her own twist on things...  Ugghhh

Winter Approaches...

Mia is getting ready for ski season!  Not sure Daddy's board is going to fit her yet...

Freak Show!!

This picture very clearly illustrates the different personalities in our family...  Specifically, it illustrates that Aubrey is quite the freak show!!!!!!  She is always a handful and always entertaining.  We'll just leave it at that!

Pizza Party!

On Friday night the kid's had a pizza party!  Literally...  They flung flour, tossed dough, and in the case of Brandon, used waaaaaaaaaaaay too much cheese for their own good!!  So fun.  Momma always puts together the best activities for the kids, and having Mia's best friend Kiera over always makes it more fun!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

RV Trip 2014

This year marked the 3rd annual Lovell RV Trip!  Each year the kids get more excited about this event, and we get better at planning.  Or should I say, learning not to plan, and just wandering aimlessly...  We took the long Labor Day weekend and decided to head North, out of the heat, but to stay in Arizona and explore our own backyard. There are so many great little mountain towns, so we camped at a different RV park every night, and explored lots of new areas.  Between the Grand Canyon, Bearizona, taking the ski lift to the top of Snow Bowl, and zip lining over Williams, AZ, we had a blast!  We even brought along our puppy, Mr Marshall.  He was one fine co-pilot!  With all of the traveling we do, this is always our favorite trip!  Quality family time and no schedule...  The best!


While the focal point of our RV trip was to be the Grand Canyon, an unexpected detour turned out to be the surprise hit of the trip!  Bearizona, in Williams, AZ, was really awesome for the kids.  They took several hundred acres of wooded land and put in a few hundred bears, some big wolves, white bison, mountain goats, etc.  Being able to get up close in a vehicle and check them out in their natural habitat had the kids enthralled for an entire afternoon...  An awesome pit stop! That's what makes the RV trips so fun.  The unexpected detours, totally unplanned, always turn out to be the most fun!

Grand Canyon!

The highlight of our RV trip was a visit to the Grand Canyon!  Much like Daddy remembered, it's awe inspiring for about 15 seconds, and then everyone kind of stands around and wonders what to do next...  It certainly is beautiful though!

Tough Girl...

For all of the challenges that Mommy and the Twins faced at the start of their little lives, we are so lucky that they never had any real physical issues.  Little Aubs is the only one who has shown any repercussion, by having weak lungs.  Whenever the weather changes, Aubs get respiratory issues or asthma.  We have learned to put her on breathing treatments at the first sign of congestion, and she handles it like a champ!  She's our big, tough girl...

2nd Grade!!

Absolutely unbelievable that Mia is already in 2nd grade!  Oh how times change.  She was so excited for her first day of school, and literally launched herself out of the car and ran off on the playground...  We are so proud of our big girl!

Twins' First Day of Pre-K!!

It's amazing to think that next year at this time the Twins will be in Kindergarten...  They were so excited to be 'upperclassmen' at their pre-school.  I just hope their teacher's expectations aren't too high after big sis Mia raised the bar!  Cuties...

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Summer in Southern Cal!

Our July started with plans to spend a weekend in Newport Beach to celebrate Independence Day.  Yet somewhere along the way Mommy finagled it into a month in Southern Cal for her and the kids...  Daddy did a few back and forth trips to ensure that he still had a business, and then joined the fam for a long week in Carlsbad to cap the summer off! What an amazing experience to see the kids spending quality time at the beach, visiting their cousins and making memories that will last a lifetime!  The summers sure do fly by, but we've made enough memories to last us until next summer... And with kids who are this fun, it's hard not to want to please them!

Knott's Berry Farm!

Most year's we go to SeaWorld during our summer vaca.  Yet this year the kids decided they wanted to try something new, so we checked out Knott's Berry Farm up in LA!  It was a great amusement park with loads of rides, and no shortage of unhealthy food or sunshine.  The kids even got to meet Snoopy and win a giant stuffed octopus!!

Beach Time!!

Every day we would go down to the beach and Daddy would start the arduous process of digging a fort!  Some days we dug a little too close to the waves and our fort was converted into a hot tub...  Regardless of the day, or what we were doing, there is really nothing on Earth like spending time away with our family.  Every moment and memory is incredible!  Time goes so quickly, and we don't intend to miss a single moment...


We capped off an amazing couple of weeks in Cali with a visit to Mia's favorite place, LEGOLAND!!  The twins have finally reached an age where they love it as well, and Brandon is just about obsessed with Legos at the moment.  We had an action packed day of rides, face painting and candy!  Nothing like a day of pure unbridled joy for the kids.


There's nothing quite like summer time smores at the beach!!

Chillin with my Girl...

We are so lucky to have an amazing family.  No doubt I love my wife and all of my children equally, yet Mia will always be my girl...  She is an absolutely unique child and shines in so many ways!

Baby Aubrey!

While in Newport Beach, Aubrey decided that she was going to be a baby again after seeing Marc & Lexi's baby, Skylar!  So she took her meals in a high chair and had Daddy feeding her...  It was very cute and playful, but quickly reminded Mommy & Daddy how happy we are to be past the baby phase of our life!

Happy 4th of July!

We spent our 4th of July in Newport Beach, enjoying a break from the heat!  After fireworks on the beach, we went on a nice long harbor boat ride with our family and Rachel's. Mia couldn't wait to learn to skipper the vessel, and Brandon manned the snack bag!  The Wichansky's joined us for a few days as well, and it made for a very relaxing holiday away...

Happy 1st Birthday Marshall

In the last week of June we celebrated Mr. Marshall's 1st birthday!  Mia took this occasion very seriously...  She sent out evites to a doggy birthday party at the local dog park!  Not only were there treats and games, but each puppy in attendance got to take home a special party bag of treats.  This dog is very loved!  As much as Daddy pretends to not be into dogs, don't tell anyone, but that little Mr. Marshall has made quite an impact...  He's a great addition to our family!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Summer Vacation in Ohau!

We just got back from a week in Hawaii!  We visited the North Shore of Oahu, the surfing mecca of the world.  We shared a beach house with our great friends, the Reilly's.  Doug & Heather's daughters, Zoe & Lilly, are older than our kids, and were so great to be with.  Our children absolutely loved them, and the 5 kids had a non-stop party!  The North Shore is so chill that it made for a very relaxing week...  We did a lot of barbecuing, hanging at the beach, and bike riding.  Aubrey was in heaven as Doug helped her to catch many lizards, snails and slugs. The girl is straight up obsessed with wildlife and wraps slugs around her fingers as 'slug rings'... Nothing seems to gross her out!  Great vacations always seem to go too quickly, but the memories are amazing.  Plus, the kids are getting to such fun ages, that exploring and traveling now is a blast!

Horseback Riding!

On Monday we took the kids over to Turtle Bay to do some horseback riding! Mia is very into horses, and is always asking for her own.  So we figured this would be the next best thing!  Since the twins couldn't go on the big ride along the beach, Daddy volunteered to stay back with the twins while they rode a miniature horse.  Everyone had such a blast! Mia even saw a giant sea turtle on her ride.  Litlle Aubs is certain she's a cowgirl princess, and is now insisting that she gets her very own white pony...