Monday, July 30, 2007

.2 California *n* Back.

We got back from our trip out to Cali on Saturday night late. Been getting back into the swing of things. Aren't you amazed that it has been a WHOLE WEEK since my last post? I am kinda OCD when it comes to blogging, so going an entire week with no post is pretty incredible. Not that everyone out there is waiting on the edges of their seats for me to post a new entry. lol.

Anyway. Our trip to California was really short, but a lot of fun! Wish I could have seen more of my old friends while out there, but I am guessing most were unavailable or out of town since I only heard from a couple people. :( Maybe next time, though.
We arrived in Cali on Wednesday at 4:00pm and went to dinner at Lucille's Smokehouse Bar B Que in Brea (YUM YUM YUM! If you haven't gone... you are TOTALLY missing out!). Their BBQ *rocks*! We meet Mike's great aunt and uncle there. We haven't seen them in over 2 years!! It was *so* great to see them!!! I would say that I was posting pictures of our dinner with them, but I ERASED MY MEMORY CARD from that night!!! I cried! :( So sad! Just remember to verify that you aren't telling your camera (DSLR Camera) to format... Format = Erase which = BAD BAD BAD! Thanks for dinner Jack and Jan!! It was so wonderful to see you!
Thursday was my only free day! And it was only free during the day. So, I meet my friend Nikki and her husband for lunch. Nikki and I haven't seen each other since Angelina was *3 weeks old*!!! Whoa! It was SO great to see her! Since seeing her, she has gotten married, and had a baby girl (Hailey) who is a month younger than Zoe. They got to meet each other. It was a typical meeting for babies. They stared at each other for several minutes, and then when on to whatever else distracted them. LOL. Hailey is so cute Nikki! :)
After lunch, the girls and I drove to the beach. It was nice! Zoe *loved* the water! As soon as she saw the ocean, and heard the waves crashing, she couldn't stop staring at it. I put her feet in the water, and she giggled, and smiled the whole time. Angelina looked for seashells and got soaking wet. After the beach, we drove around for a bit. I showed Angelina my parents' old house, where I went to high school, the park she used to play at with grandma and papa all the time, the hospital she was born at (Mission Hospital), and I was even able to show her the apartment Mike and I had while I was pregnant with her, and told her that she lived there for 1 week of her life. :) It was neat to *drive* down memory lane. :) Thursday night, we went to Mike's oldest daughter, Samantha's dance recital. She takes tap dancing. She did really great. Angelina was ecstatic!! Angelina hadn't seen Sam in more than 2 years. After Sam's recital, we went to Buca di Beppo for dinner, and then went back to our hotel.
Friday we surprised Sam. We picked her up, and told her we were taking her to.... DISNEYLAND!! What a day! It was exciting, fun, and tiring! :) Angelina went on *every* ride there!! First time she has shown interest in going on rides. She even went on Splash Mountain, and promptly decided while crying that she would *never* go on that ride again! Ha ha! She even went on Space Mountain, and *loved* it!! I was pretty amazed! :) Zoe went on a couple of rides too! She went on Snow White's Scary Adventure, Small World, and Pirates of the Caribbean. She loved all of the rides! It was so cute to see her laughing during each ride. The look on her face was cute too. She was amazed at everything going on. :) So, needless to say, everyone had a great time!
Saturday morning we meet Sam and her mom for breakfast, and then headed to the airport to come home. It was a whirlwind trip, but it was full of fun! :)

So... Zoe's bottom front teeth *finally* poked through the skin!! YAY! She has been a tad bit cranky, so I figured it was time the teeth came through, and we discovered them Saturday night! :) She wasn't as cranky as Angelina used to get, but she was a bit cranky on the airplane, which made it a little tough for Mike, because she wasn't wanting to relax. My husband is so wonderful! He got upgraded to first class, and once again let me take it! So I got to sit in first class. :) Thanks babe! All in all, both children were fabulous! I flew alone with both kids from NC to Cali, so I was a bit stressed, but we made it! :)

Being in California made me realize how much I do not miss it there. The amount of time it takes to get places at 5pm or 8am is absolutely insane! I had forgotten just how terrible the traffic is. Our hotel was 11 miles from Mike's office, and it literally took us 1 hour or more to get from one to the other. Ridiculous! It's crowded, and stressful. But, we still had fun. But I wouldn't want to live there again.

Anyway, Mike and I are watching a movie. Will write more later. ;) night. Below are picture #'s 64-70.

Pictures from up in the air.

So many houses crammed together in Cali. (taken from the plane)

Her first ear hat!! It also says "Zoe" on the back. :) Thanks Daddy!

Where'd you go Zoe?

Daddy Kisses!!

Trying to pull out the sword in the stone. :)

Angelina and Sam at Disneyland together. :) SO cute!


In line at Pirates of the Caribbean.

Getting dizzy on the teacup ride.

Disneyland makes babies tired!

Angelina playing at the ocean's edge.

Finding Seashells.

Happy at the beach.

First time at the beach, and *loving* it! Little toes in the water.

Can't take her eyes off the ocean. :)

Water's Edge.

.The Pacific.

Tire Swingin'.

I often wonder what she is thinking...

Monday, July 23, 2007

::Downtown Raleigh::, Days {58-63}, *The Kite Runner*

Our weekend was *really* fun! Friday night Angelina and Zoe spent the night at my parent's house, which left me a night to myself... AWESOME!! I went to Archiver's and scrapbooked!! Yay! Saturday morning I went and picked Mike up from the airport, and we then came home, and napped. Which was awesome, considering how tired I suddenly was when Mike got in the car. It's weird. I am an insomniac when he isn't home, and I can't seem to fall asleep. But, as soon as I see Mike standing at the curb outside of the airport, a sense of relief comes over me. My husband is my security. When he is home, I feel secure. I feel happy. Our family is complete... even if only for a couple of days. :)

After we napped, we meet my parents and our children in Downtown Raleigh. They were having a street fair called "Raleigh Wide Open". We had a lot of fun! The weather has been phenomenal for the past several days, which is so wonderful!! Not to mention *so* rare! Anyway. Here are some photos I took during Raleigh Wide Open! It is getting late, and I need to *try* and get some sleep. Mike left really early this morning for California. The girls and I leave for California on Wednesday late morning to join Mike, and to visit some friends and family while out there, so we are really looking forward to that. :) I am currently watching the movie Elizabethtown, which is turning out to be a great movie!! :) Check it out if you haven't seen it.

More tomorrow! ;)


***Oh, and by the way... I finished The Kite Runner. OK. This book is high up on my *must read* book list!! What an excellent book!! The writer is very descriptive. I mean, I could actually envision things. I love that. Love that I can feel like I was there. There are sad parts in this book, but overall, it was excellent!! I can't wait to read his next book, "A Thousand Splendid Suns".***

Sunday, July 22, 2007


Pictures I *love*, originally uploaded by *We* are the {Benners}.

Here are some pictures I found of flickr that I am *loving* right now!! Some of these pictures prompted me to tell Mike that "my camera wants to go to Wyoming and/or Montana!!!" So... we are probably going in September!! YAY! Check out these wonderful photographers!


Photographer Credits Below...

1. Untitled, 2. Red Horse, Blue Meadow, 3. Morning Glow on the Tetons, 4. A Morning Moment in the Mountains, 5. A Dark Pier at Palacios, 6. The Harbor at Palacios, 7. A Magical Meadow, 8. Alien Landscape Too, 9. A Cloudy Afternoon at Oxbow Bend, 10. A Moment in March, 11. Posterized Moment in Oxbow Bend, 12. A Morning Moment, 13. Red Barn Green Vines, 14. Nature in Hand, 15. Color and Drama at Sea, 16. Yellow in the Afternoon, 17. Endless Track to the Clouds, 18. Red Sky over Texas, 19. A Blue Morning in the Tetons, 20. Back to the Barn, 21. A Storm in Wyoming, 22. The Dark Road to Oz, 23. The Carpenter´s Hand, 24. Untitled, 25. northern exposure, 26. coffeegirl swirls, 27. Untitled, 28. Untitled, 29. Untitled, 30. manzanita beach, 31. North Head lighthouse lookout, 32. Untitled, 33. Mmm... fall., 34. Untitled, 35. barn, 36. Untitled

Friday, July 20, 2007

Music Video's I am liking...

OK, so normally. Not a big fan of rap, but I have always like Bone Thugs N Harmony, and there new song is no exception! It is really good! I am also liking Akon a lot right now too. He is featured in Bone Thugs' new song "I tried".

I am also loving this music video by Gwen Stefani. It's very good. I love how creative they got with it, and the little acting part in the beginning is pretty funny. :)

I love this song, What I've Done by Linkin Park! This video is *so* powerful. It gives me the chills, and by the end I have tears in my eyes! Watch it and see if you have the same reaction.


Thursday, July 19, 2007


OK, so I am playing around with a new photoshop editing software program called Lightroom. This program absolutely *rocks*!!! :) Talk about being able to manipulate photos in some cool ways!! Below are day 57 pictures... this is only scraping the surface!! There are *so* many things you can do with this program!! I am loving it so far!

It is late, and I am tired... *yawn* Nighty Night!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

*Nine* Months!!

Dear Zoe,

Seems that time continues to go by faster, because it seems as if I was just writing your 8 month letter, and now here I am writing your nine month letter! Amazing!! You have done quite a bit in a month! Your adjusted age is almost 6 months. I would have to say that you are doing pretty great! Crawling already! Pretty great. You still can't sit that well, but that's OK! It's neat to see how different things are going with you. Your sister sat first and then crawled. I love seeing you grow, and seeing what you're going to do next. It is like... "Zoe's Mystery Movie". :)

I am not too worried about how advanced you are when it comes to crawling, sitting, walking, etc. I realize more and more everyday that you will get it when it is time. No rushing. I am savoring every moment of your "baby hood". :) I have watched your sister grow from birth to 5 years old, and so many times I wonder where all the time went!! She grew so fast! I remember thinking a lot when she was your age that I "couldn't wait" for her to walk, or crawl, or sit, or eat food on her own. I don't do that to you, because it seemed like as soon as I would think or say it when Angelina was little, it would happen. I learned not to rush the milestones. Instead, enjoy, and savor every moment of your "baby hood". And I do the same with your sister. Because one day you both will be adults, and I know that I will think at least once, "Wow! They are all grown up... ALREADY?!" I live for the memories, and I can't wait to create more with you... and of course your sissy! ;)

You have also had quite the taste test lately!! I know that I blogged about everything you tried while in Arizona! It's quite funny now. Mommy has spoiled you by letting try pretty much whatever she is eating! Now everytime I eat something, you make noises at me letting me know that you are there. As if I didn't know. And, if I don't react fast enough, you get louder until I look at you and say something. Even then, you bang your hands, and continue to make your sounds until I give you a taste. This happens mostly when ice cream is being consumed. LOL. You have learned the wonderful*ness, that is Ice Cream. :) You also love spaghetti sauce. It's like you know when those things are going to be made, because you start making groan sounds as soon as you see it. :) It's become very entertaining!! I love that you want to try the food, though! You have tried many many things, but I think when you tried Garlic Hummus and then wanted more, that was the most surprising. :) You are probably going to have the exquisite palate your sister has. :)

Zoe, we have had yet another wonderful month! You truly are a blessing, and I thank Jesus for you every single day!!

Love you!