September 12, 2018

Mom's Birthday Letter to Drew - Age 11

Dear Drew,

This birthday sure snuck up on us all this year with so many things happening, like the pending move.  I realize you're in for some big changes this next year, many of which you are dreading and very upset with your Dad and me.  I hope the day you look back on these letters, you'll find that we made the best decision for our family.

However this past year - your first year in double digits - you continued to shine.  You're now a YouTuber with your very own channel. Your report cards are excellent, and your standardized testing this year (CAASP Test) was darn near perfect!  Not only do you continue to wow your parents, but all those you come into contact with.

Your baseball career this past two seasons (Spring & Tournament/Summer baseball) you reigned #1 for Spring and you continued to improve with the challenges brought by Summer Ball.  It's so fun to see you play - I hope you continue for many years to come.

While you continued guitar lessons for the full year - despite we told you to give it 6months - we're sad to see you turn this down after the move.  We understand and you need to do what makes you happy.  I hope you find a new hobby and it becomes your passion.

I love watching you grow and become a young man.  I know you have faced numerous obstacles this past year, and you continue to shine.  Your Dad and I are so very proud of you.  And so grateful to call you our son.  Keep being who you are.  Never lose sight of what makes you you. 

Love you always,

November 20, 2017

Grade 4 Report Card - First Trimester

Drew Got his first report card of 4th grade, and our kid is a genius -- OK I'm bias.  He did have "straight 3's" which is 4th Grade Common Core grading (we'd call it straight A's).

Each subject is given a "numerical" grade 1-3, 3 being the highest.  And then from there there are details/analysis about the grades provided. 
  • +  = Area of Strength
  • ✓  = Developing Appropriately
  • N  = Needs More Time
  • AC = Area of Concern
  • X  = Not evaluated at this time

So his report card looked like the Following:

+ For Foundational Skills (Reading with Fluency etc.
+ Informational Text (comprehension)
+ Literature - Determines theme of story and can summarize
Reading Level R

+ Narrative Writing
 ✓ Writing Process

+ Conventions of Standard English (Demonstrates proper grammar when writing/speaking)
+ Vocabulary Acquisition and Use

✓ Comprehension and Collaboration
✓ Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas

MATH - 3
+ Operations and Algebraic Thinking
+ Numbers and Operations in Base 10
+ Measurements and Data

+ Demonstrates reasoning & provides explanations

SCIENCE - 3 & 3




+ Follows Rules and Directions
+ Respects People and property
+ Exercises Control

✓ Collaborates effectively
+ Writes legibly
✓ Uses Time Constructively
+ Maintains Focus
✓   Puts forth effort
✓ Exhibits organizational Skills
+ Completes and turns in assignments
+ Uses technology ethically and effectively

And here is a picture from a couple weekends ago when he was feeding the fish while Mom & Dad were wine tasting at Cline.

September 15, 2017

Flying Food

For years Dave has been talking about how he and his Dad (Tata to Drew) had a food fight in LA for Dave's 30th birthday and his Dad's 50th.  All this time, Drew asked to have a food fight too, and Dave said when you turn 10 we'll talk about it.

Well - now that Drew was turning 10 the time was now.  Drew never let Dave forget this promise and it was time for Dave to put up.  So he did.

Last weekend, Dave baked and prepped food for 2 days getting ready for Drew's impromptu 10th Birthday food fight.  Drew and 5 friends teamed up to toss pies, pudding, cake and donuts.  I on the other hand wanted nothing to do with this mess-maker.

Drew was allowed to get Dave first with a lemon meringue pie and then it was on like Donkey Kong!

While it took Dave between 24-48 hours to prepare, the entire thing was over in minutes.

Drew had a blast. The other kids had a blast.  Dave had a good time - and cleaned up all of the mess.

I'd call this mission successful. 

Drew is already talking about doing this with his kids someday - especially since Dave wouldn't commit to doing this again in 20 years.

September 13, 2017

Strumming Into Lessons

A couple months back, I asked Drew if he wanted to join the school band. He declined but said he was interested in picking up the guitar.

So right after school got out for the summer, I started doing some research and found a place for lessons and a few weeks later picked up a guitar. Summer baseball obligations meant we had to postpone lessons until our routine got back on track... and that lead us to what we are up to every Wednesday for the past month since school started last month...

Guitar lessons!

Drew said he wanted to do the acoustic guitar to be just like Grandpa.

September 12, 2017

Mom's Birthday Letter to Drew - Age 10

Dear Drew,

Double Digits baby!  You finally made it - 10 years old.  One decade ago you made your Dad and I parents, and  I can't believe how quickly time is flying.  In a few short years you'll be spreading your wings and taking on the world.

But for now, you're still my punkin',  under our roof and learning to slowly expand your wings.  Over the past year we're starting to see you bloom into the young man you are becoming, but still watching you cling to the innocence of childhood.  I'm cherishing what little time we have to enjoy this childhood innocence, because unfortunately those eyes of innocence disappear as the realities of the world take over your day-to-day.

Now in the 4th grade, you are tackling more challenges at school and even at home.  Chores are beefing up, homework is taking longer, and now you're taking on an instrument.  All of this will help you grow into the responsible young man I dream you will become.  I love the questions you have about anything and everything - challenging what we know and showing off a bit what you know.  Asking the questions about things you're uncertain of, and taking risks.  Including finally learning how to ride your bike!! 

Just as you are learning with bike riding, there are times in life you will fall, but it's so very important to get back up and try again. So what if it's challenging and difficult - that is what makes the accomplishments that come from overcoming these challenges that much more rewarding.  Don't sweat the small stuff.  Don't get worked up over things that tomorrow really won't matter.  Instead, focus on what you do have - what's truly important - and stay positive

That is what I dream for you this year and every year - continue to grow in every aspect in your life. Be the best person you can be.  Someone kind, respectful, responsible and loving.

I love you bud, and I love that you're still my little boy, even if you're busy reminding me that you're about to become a "tween".  Fight the good fight and work hard to make your dreams come true.

I love you more!

  • Marvel Action Figures & Movies
  • Lego Mini Figures
  • Playing baseball
  • Playing guitar
  • Riding your bike
  • Watching YouTube Videos
  • Netflix Shows
  • Traveling & staying in hotels
  • Water - pools, beaches

August 14, 2017

4th Grade Here We Come!

It's hard to believe summer is over and it is time to start school. Today Mom and Dad walked Drew to his first day of school - 4th grade.

4th Grade
 Mom was running a little behind, so we had to scramble to school and showed up just as the class was walking to their room.  Therefore Mom & Dad decided to make sure Drew knew exactly which room was his -- he was a bit uncertain about which line he was supposed to be following.  In the end we made it to the gate at the perimeter of the school and Drew said he could handle it the rest of the way.

I tried to snap one more picture -- and clearly he was less than thrilled that his parents wanted to capture his final moments of freedom.

Less than thrilled about ANOTHER photo
Here's to hoping it's a great year at the school!  Can't wait to hear how the first day went and what he thought of his teacher and the kids in the class.

October 31, 2016

Halloween Season - 2016

So I've been extremely busy with life and as a result am terrible at updating our blog.  I'm hoping to make some improvements over the next few months.

Here is a look at our Halloween Season... first up Del Osso Farms in Lathrop.  We were a little disappointed this year - they started charging general admission so it was $18/person just to walk through the door.  When we could get away with paying $20 or so for Drew to do a few things plus the pumpkin canons.

Well we made the best of an expensive situation...

Mom & Dad on the Hay Ride

Drew on Hay Ride

Drew on the Zip Line

Brave Kid

Dad at the Pumpkin Canons

Then on Halloween, I finally took the day off so I could watch his school parade and help in the classroom.  Normally I could sneak away during the workday just to catch a peek at the parade, but life has been busy and complicated, so the only way it was going to happen this year is if I took the entire day off.  It was worth every moment!

And they predicted rain by 7pm, so we tried to get our trick or treating in early!

Kylo Ren - Star Wars the Force Awakens

Thankfully it didn't rain - well a few sprinkles don't count.  We made our rounds with our trick or treat buddies - and the Moms were smart again and traveled with some treats of our own -- wine!  We called it quits when the kids could no longer carry their candy.