Saturday, July 24, 2010

San Diego 2010

We decided to take a family vacation this year so we could take Kendyl to see the beach. We were also testing her to see how she would do with traveling since we plan to go to Maryland in October. Kendyl did pretty well until the last 2 nights. Since she was sleeping in our room we had some issues with her waking up in the middle of the night when she saw us. Aside from this she did wonderful! I am somewhat of a drill sergeant about "the schedule" so it was good for me to see that we could throw her off a little bit and everything would still be fine. While we were there we went to the beach a couple of times (Coronado and La Jolla mostly), a farmers market at Ocean Beach, shopping at Seaport Village and walked around Old Town. Overall, it was just nice to get out of the heat. We went out to eat at some of our favorite spots and we tried some new ones as well. My personal favorite were El Indio and Hodads which were featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives on the Food Network. Both were super yummy! Here are some pictures from the trip:

This was our first night in SD. We went to the beach on Coronado Island.

So pretty!

We went to a hat store in Seaport Village and had Kendyl try a bunch of hats/glasses on

I probably should have cleaned her face...oh well

I am pretty sure this was Kendyl's favorite thing she did while in SD. She had a blast!

At La Jolla. It was actually pretty cold the first 2 days we were there, but there were no complaints from us. We were loving the cold weather!

Kendyl and Dad

La Jolla. It is not your typical sandy beach but it was so much fun to walk around on the rocks and see all the tide pools with sea creatures! This was probably my favorite thing we did.

These guys came and sang "It's a Small World After All" to Kendyl. She thought they were pretty great! I couldn't even get her to look at me for the picture. Ha ha!

Just walking around Old Town. I LOVE this picture.

Matt and Ben at Hodads. Nice face Ben...

Kendyl at Hodads

Kendyl and Dad at Hodads

The food at Hodads is pretty awesome, but the milkshakes are the best I have ever had! I got the strawberry and Matt got a chocolate malt. So good, but a little too big. We were only able to finish about half of them.

All ready for the beach! I wanted to let her finish her nap so before heading down to the beach with Matt and Ben Kendyl and I went on a walk for about an hour.

On our walk I saw my dream house! Sigh...

At Pizza Bella on our last day. Most babies make a hilarious face when they eat a lemon. Not my kid she thought it was yummy?

This was the view from the balcony. Instead of staying at a hotel we rented a condo which worked really well with having a baby.

The night time view :)

I did it!

Back in March I had to take an AEPA test (Arizona Educator Proficiency Assessment) in the area of secondary math in order to be deemed "highly qualified" by the state of Arizona. In order to teach resource (special education) math I have to be certified in special education, but I also have to be highly qualified in the content area that I teach. The tests cost $105 and take about 4 hours. While I knew the algebra and geometry on the test I have been out of touch with the trigonometry and calculus for a while. Naturally, I was pretty stinkin' nervous! I studied like crazy (which was very difficult to do with a baby while working full time!). I went in to take the test and it took me the entire 4 hours to finish. There were 100 multiple choice questions and an essay portion (yes there is an essay question on the MATH test). Just to give you an idea, one of the questions was this: A telephone connection pole is 80 feet tall. If the cable wire hits 40 feet high on the telephone pole with a slope of 2/3. If they moved the wires to hit 60 feet high , how long will the cable be if the slope stays 2/3...sadly, this was one of the easier questions! So I was moving through the multiple choice questions. Some I was able to figure out while other I had absolutely no clue. Then...I got to the essay question and I blanked. I knew there was a way to solve it using right triangles, but I couldn't figure it out! I was so frustrated that I wrote down what I could and turned in my test. Sure enough I figured it out once I walked out the door! Needless to say I was not feeling terribly confident, but I thought there could be a small chance. I impatiently wait a month for the results. They were released in the middle of the school day, but there was no way I would be able to wait until I got home so I pulled them up while I was at work. I didn't pass. As if that wasn't bad enough I missed it by 4 points!! Aside from being crushed I was embarrassed. I had never really failed a test before.
A couple days later I sign up for the next test in June. I knew that if I didn't pass this next test that I was going to have to take classes which I REALLY didn't want to do. The thought of working full time, being a mom AND a student made me sick to my stomach. I know there are a lot of teachers who can do this, but I don't have any idea how. I spent my first week of summer break studying like a crazy woman. I seriously have never been so stressed out in my life! Just like last time it took me the entire 4 hours. I left the testing room feeling the same as I did the last time; not too confident, but thinking there could be a chance. I pretty much told myself I didn't pass because I knew I would not be able to handle failing again. I spent the next month praying, begging and pleading with God. Sure enough the day before the test results came out I saw this:
My grandma :)

If you want to know the story behind this I posted it on an old blog post: http://mattandnikkismith.blogspot.com/2009/05/good-news.html

June 6th rolled around and my grandma had worked her magic again! Aside from Kendyl being born and my step-dad coming home from war I don't think I have ever felt such relief. As of June 6th, 2009 I am now a highly qualified, special education certified resource math teacher and it feels pretty awesome!

To make an awesome situation even better my husband came home with this!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

8 months!

Kendyl is two-thirds of the way through her first year of life and it breaks my heart. I just want her to stay my baby forever. On a more positive note though she just keeps raising the cuteness bar! I have been able to stay home with her this month because I am off work for the summer and I seriously do not know how I am going to go back in the fall! We have so much fun together during the day and I do not want to miss a second of it! It is pretty safe to say that she is the most lovable, mellow baby ever. She continuously amazes me with how well she can roll with the punches (this is not a trait that she got from me!). She generally wakes up between 6:30 and 7. She takes two naps; one at 9:00 and the other at 2:00. Her naps generally last for about 1-2 hours, then she goes to bed around 7:30 or 8:00. She still eats cereal for breakfast (her favorite meal of the day) and a vegetable or fruit for dinner. She talks all the time and has gotten her b, m, g, and k sounds down really well. The crawling has been mastered and she is now able to get from room to room which keeps me on my toes all day long. The mommy's girl phase is still in high gear though she really enjoys playing with Matt. Some of the things I want to remember from this month are:
-Getting her ears pierced. She actually did pretty well and only cried a little bit.
-We will hold a stuffed animal up and say "give so and so a kiss" and she will lean in and kiss them. It is so stinkin' cute!
-One day we were out in the back yard and she crawled off into the grass. She crawled halfway into the yard with her butt up in the air so her knees would not touch the grass! I got it on video camera if I ever take the time to figure out how to download it.
-She loves to hold her diaper cremes especially the tube of "Butt Paste"
-She loves playing with Katie even though Katie hates it.
-She has become even more dependent on her pacifier...oops!
-She LOVES going shopping with me! She smiles at random people in the store and just has a grand old time digging through my purse and throwing things on the floor. Walmart will forever have a pink pacifier under the shelves in the baby food aisle...
-She does not like her shoes. I pretty much never made her wear them until now. When I first put them on her she would bend her knees whenever we tried to make her stand so she didn't have to stand in the shoes.
-She now has her 2 bottom teeth.
-She is learning to share. She will take her toys and hold them out to us. Sometimes she lets us take them...other times she just likes the idea of sharing, but not the act of it so much.

Here are some pictures from the month. As usual there are a ton of them!

8 months





That red spot on her lip was blood. She fell and hit her lip on her dresser drawer knob. I have never seen her cry so hard...mother of the year!

Giving kisses to Mickey :)

She was eating a raspberry

This is Kaeden and Kendyl when they were about 1 month old...

and this is them now. These guys were born 2 days apart. Kaeden is the son of my friend Heidi at work.

We got her a new walker

She didn't really want to walk with it though she she kept trying to sit down.

She eventually got her way and decided to crawl with it...

Such a priss

It might be time to use the regular bath. She has learned to crawl out of this one...


Pulling clothes out of a laundry basket...go figure!

Oooh! I can get into some of dad's movies now!

LOVE that dimple


Floating in the raft that Granny got her!


Shopping at Toys R Us

Snuggling with Mickey (her new best friend)

Being mischievous!

She kept this on for the longest time. I think she liked it!

This one is for Courtney. She is the only one who will find this picture as hilarious as I do :)

"Helping" with the dishes ;) Don't worry I moved all the knives

Katie HATES when she does this...

but I don't think Kendyl cares.

Kendyl cries = mom takes a picture. Ha ha!

Who needs toys when there is a bowl full of water on the floor that I can get into?

She has put at least 10 pieces of dog food in her mouth!