Apr 20, 2011

Swimming Classes

We signed up last November for an infant/toddler swimming class put on through the Pullman Aquatic Center. We met once a week for 30 minutes. Just guessing, I think there were about 10 other families in our class with kiddos between 12 months and 18 months old. Needless to say, Brendan had a ball!!

Our instructor did a really nice job with the pace of the class and had the kids practicing floating on their tummies,

floating on their backs (she called it the Starfish position),

sticking their faces in the water to blow bubbles and get used to that feeling,

and lastly practicing doing a swooping motion with Brendan getting him used to moving underneath the water.

It was really fun to experience that with Brendan and he really liked being in the water and watching the other kids.

Apr 10, 2011


We had the gift of being able to travel with my parents to Kauai for 7 days over my spring break. We had an AMAZING time!! We are so thankful that my parents allowed us to stay at their time-share condo, rented a larger vehicle for all of us, took us out to a fancy dinner and art show, helped us with Brendan A LOT, and spoiled us all!! Being with my parents made traveling with a toddler very easy.

The trip began with our flight out of Pullman being canceled due to a computer glitch, so we ended up driving to Seattle instead of flying which was kind of a bummer...but we felt Alaska Airlines customer service handled the issue very well. The downside was having to drive home at the end of our trip (not getting home until 2 in the morning before having to get up and work the next day). However, the bonus was we were able to have a fun time going out to eat at the Spaghetti Factory in Auburn and playing lots with our cute little guy! Here is a picture of him ready to pack up before leaving the hotel in Seattle.

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We were a little nervous about flying that far with a 13 month old, but Brendan did GREAT! We were tired when we landed in Hawaii, but felt things couldn't have gone much better. We had lots of snacks, lots of books, many toys, and I wrapped up one small gift for him to open each hour (we used everything we had and felt prepared). Brendan also was great about adjusting himself to the three hour difference in Hawaii. The first afternoon we enjoyed the beautiful ocean view from the condo balcony, ate a wonderful meal in the condo, and wondered about the amazing grounds at the Marriott Waiohai in Poipu. I'm sorry I don't have more pictures of the condo to share--it was beautiful, just picture paradise.

The next few days we enjoyed having coffee on the beach overlooking the ocean, going on some beautiful walks, and getting some sun (Jamie on the beach with a book, and Josh on the golf course). We took several walks on these cliffs just above the ocean.

We also were able to visit a place called Spouting Horn. The waves crash in on these lava rock cliffs, there is one place where the cliffs have a hole in the rock, the water crashing in creates so much pressure that it causes water to blow up the hole and make a pretty cool sound.

On Wednesday we toured up the Waimea Canyon. So Crazy to think there is this huge canyon in the center of the island. BEAUTIFUL is the best word to describe it.

On our way down the canyon we saw a neat spot that shows the red clay soil that you see everywhere on the island

We stopped at the Kauai Coffee Company and saw how coffee beans were grown and made. The coffee is incredible! My parents bought some (my Mom said it is always one of their first stops on the island) and we enjoyed drinking it all week. Here is a picture of what the coffee bean trees look like.

Brendan had so much fun swimming in the pool, going on walks in the backpack, exploring new places, eating fresh fruit, and spending time with his MiMi and Grandpa. Here is a cute picture of our little traveler--what a CHAMP!

The next few days were spent with more time on the beach, exploring some more little towns on the island and going out for some amazing dinners. My parents took care of Brendan one night so Josh and I could go out for a nice dinner. One night we ate dinner outside at a yummy restaurant and watched the beautiful sunset as we enjoyed our meal. As I mentioned earlier in the post my parents treated us to a great dinner out in a little community that puts on a weekly art show. And our last night on the island we ate near the harbor at a famous Kauai restaurant named Dukes. All the food was so good. We all really appreciated the fact that so much food was locally grown and prepared so fresh.

Pictures from a beach we explored one day

Here are some pictures at our dinner out before the art show

Our final day we visited a waterfall and a recreation of an old Hawaiian Village (pictures to come soon). It left us so excited to get to go back to Hawaii someday to explore even more. What a beautiful island--God's beauty shown everywhere. Truly a gift. It was a special week. A huge blessing!


And The Winner Is...

It's official!! Josh won our annual March Madness Tournament Competition. It came down to the Final Four Games and he ended up winning by 3 points--pretty close!! We were able to watch quite a few games and had fun cheering all the underdogs on to victory. Congrats to UCONN! Josh won money to put towards a round of golf! Here is the winning man with his bracket and prize in hand!

The end of March Madness means that it is time for the Smart Family to cancel their cable until September and put money towards outside projects! This is exciting because it means the beginning of spring!! This weekend we bought some new pots to put on the new deck that Josh built last spring and some herbs and veggies to plant in them. We are looking forward to time outside. WELCOME SPRING!!! We're SO SO SO glad you are finally here (we hope)!!

Here is a picture of the pots I planted this morning with lettuce and herbs. The empty pot will be for some lavender when it gets a little warmer out. I also planed some Dalia's for our front porch.

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