Saturday, January 24, 2015

Catching Up With Ava

Despite this blog's lengthy silence, Ava has been very busy over the past several months.
As summer wound down, Ava visited Point Loma and the Cabrillo National Monument for the first time, and we went apple and raspberry picking.  
Perhaps the biggest excitement was the start of second grade.  Ava has really enjoyed the new school year and lists math as her favorite subject.

Ava's athletic endeavors have continued.  She's been at Wildfire for four years, and has moved up to the Devo level.  After a brief hiatus from soccer, Ava came back strong and scored tons of goals for the Lucky Charms.

One of Ava's biggest extracurriculars is Girl Scouts.  The girls moved up from Daisies to Brownies this year, and have enjoyed lots of great community service projects like helping out at the food bank, beach cleanup, and baking for the families at our local Ronald McDonald House.
Halloween has always been one of Ava's favorite holidays, and the festivities lasted all month with pumpkin picking, a special visit to Disneyland, and trick or treating with friends in our neighborhood.
Ava got to spend the entire week of Thanksgiving in Oakland staying with Grandma and Grandpa.  We had plenty of good food and family time, including getting to see cousin Gil, Great Grandaddy, and a performance of Mary Poppins. 
Back home, Ava got to spend some time with cousin Anthony and saw a performance of the Nutcracker here in Irvine.

In addition to the Nutcracker, Ava prepped for Christmas with visits to Santa, cookie baking, gingerbread house making.
We celebrated Christmas with Grammy and Poppy, and Ava got to have fun with her presents after that.
We ushered in the new year on east coast time with Martinelli's and poppers. 
On New Year's Day, we visited the beach where it was just warm enough to dip out toes into the water.
2015 has gotten off to a great start, and has included Ava's first trip to Din Tai Fung.

Monday, September 1, 2014

End of Summer Fun

With the start of school approaching (tomorrow), it's time to catch up on the latter part of Ava's summer adventures.

Ava turned 7 just a few weeks ago and celebrated with presents and dinner at Lazy Dog Cafe. 
The celebrations continued that weekend with Ava's grandparents and friends for a pool party at the Woollett Aquatic Center.  The kids enjoyed going down the water slide and "Frozen" themed treats.
Heading to Simi Valley, Ava got a taste of history at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library.  Not only did she "learn" about things that were way over her head, but she got to step aboard Air Force One and Marine One.  
Outside the museum we got to see a piece of the Berlin Wall.
The library was also hosting a special baseball exhibition featuring uniforms, bats, and memorabilia from legends such as Honus Wagner, Babe Ruth, and Jackie Robinson.  
Of course plenty of live baseball was on tap this summer including inviting a friend to Angel Stadium cheer on Mike Trout,   

A chance to cheer on Abby's hometown Oakland A's when they came to town,
And a trip to Lancaster to see the single-A Lancaster Jethawks. 
Prior to the game, Ava and Chris played catch on the field,
And Ava got autographs from some of the Jethawks players as well as their mascot Kaboom! 
Grammy, Poppy, Chris, and Ava enjoyed great seats and food
And Ava even got to run through the outfield during the game and around the bases after the game.  (Don't worry.  Ava's not slow.  The kid in orange had a 90 foot head start.) 

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Breaking Records and Busting Myths

Ava has continued to enjoy her summer and spent several nights with Grammy and Poppy where she did woodworking and searched for shells at the beach.
Ava has been involved in several camps including tennis camp and even a performing arts camp that culminated in Ava's performance as Olaf in "Frozen." 
Ava will tell you that Irvine is "famous" because lots of homes have ivy (huh?), the city is home to UC Irvine (Zot!), and because it is a hotbed for swimming.  This past week, Irvine hosted the USA Swimming National Championships.  Before the meet, Ava and her friends got to meet Olympic gold medalists Josh Davis, Conor Dwyer, and Tyler Clary. 
During the meet, Ava cheered on some of the best swimmers in the world including Missy Franklin, Michael Phelps, and Matt Grevers. 
The highlight of the night was watching teen phenom Katie Ledecky set a new world record in the 400 meter freestyle.  It was an amazing race and the crowd was going nuts. 
As we walked back to our car we bumped into none other than Katie Ledecky! 
The next day, we picked up a couple of Ava's friends to check out the Mythbusters exhibit at the DiscoveryCube.  They learned about how the Mythbusters test out myths and got to test out and bust some myths themselves. 
Ava's favorite activity was building houses out of different materials and then putting them in front of an air cannon in order to determine whether the Big Bad Wolf could blow down a house made of bricks.
The permanent exhibits at the museum were a lot of fun too with a rock wall,  
Interactive hockey exhibits, 
Learning about eating locally, nutrition, and recycling, 
And creating musical chaos! 
Ava's summer of fun continues with Girl Scout Camp and then a trip up to Camp Oakland.