Day 58 – March 29, 2010 – Pier 39 and parting of the rain

This afternoon we loaded the entire Peralta and Sedrick families into the vans to visit one of my favorite places in the world – Pier 39.  When we left the clouds were threatening rain and the forecast called for rain. We offered a family prayer asking for the weather to be calmed for our family trip. Heading towards Oakland we encountered heavy rain but our faith was not deterred. When we passed through the Berkeley Tunnels the weather broke. We enjoyed a beautiful afternoon with a cloudy ceiling with sunny breaks every once in awhile.

We relished the afternoon together visiting various stores of interest and watching the street performers.  The kids particularly enjoyed the Hat Store donning every interesting hat within their arms-reach. The Puppet Shot and Houdini Magic Shop were also big hits.

Fun in the hat shop

We took time to watch the Sea Lions who have taken over the boat docks and were basking in the warmth of the afternoon. Seagulls flew around the pier waiting for generous donors to toss bread, pretzels, chips and other food items. I decided to try hand feeding the seagulls and was successful.  I only got my finger nipped twice – no pain just a little surprise.

Seagull Whisperer

The lady next to me decided to hand feed them as well. The kept retracting her hand causing the Seagull to miss the pretzel. I convinced her to stand firm. She was rewarded with a successful feeding but the seagull managed to get a healthy bite of her finger. We all laughed heartily.

At the conclusions of a wonderful day it started to sprinkle as we loaded up the van. I look the younger kids home with Rhonda and Phil. Judie stayed with Devon, Christian, Amanda, Rachel and Tommy to visit Union Square.

Day 57 – March 28, 2010 – A family commemoration of Caroline Peralta – Mother, Grandmother, Auntie and Friend

Today family and friends gathered at Rhonda and Phil’s home to commemorate the life of Phil and Judie’s mom Caroline Peralta. We enjoyed a wonderful afternoon catching up with family and friends. Many happy memories of mom were shared and even a few sweet memories of Dad Peralta came to mind.

Family and friends who joined us included Feley Santos Mela Gonzalez, Joe and Mary Cerezo, Kathy Bernarado and her two sons –Eddie and Marcos, Wally and Feley Datuin, Marvin Datuin, Dole and Tessie Peralta, John Paul Peralta, Boyett Prado, Stephanie Moncayo, Valerie Guiterrez, Tommy and Rachel, Amanda Peralta, Maria Fonts, and Lisa Craig.  We had quite the house full and a lot of food – typical family activity.

Tessie Prado was kind enough to lead the family in the reading of the Catholic Rosary.  After the reading of the rosary we had a family prayer and feasted on a variety of Filipino and American food. If you’re not familiar with Filipino parties they last well into the evening with many trips to the dinner table.

A little bit of Mom Peralta with us.

Judie donned Mom Peralta’s orange hat giving everyone a feel of Mom being there with us.

The older members of the family visited in the house. While the younger adults and kids enjoyed dinner and visiting in the sunny warm weather.  Today provided the opportunity for Cynsha and Hendrick to try Chicken Adobo, Pansit and Loompia.  Like other members of the family the relished the new food and made many trips to the dinner table.

We closed the evening with some kids playing Guitar Hero while Judie and Valerie styled Cynsha’s hair.  The remaining kids watched “Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs” in the bedroom.

An EXCELLENT day with the family.

Day 56 – March 27, 2010 – Fun in the park with Asha and her kids

We arrived at Rhonda and Phil’s house this morning around 8:00 and enjoyed a sweet reunion with Rhonda and Phil.  Once we got everyone settled I had to jump on the phone and Internet to take care of some things for work. About lunch time Judie came in to tell me that her good friend Asha is in town and asked if we could spend the afternoon with her and the kids. The answer of course was an excited yes!

We spent late afternoon with Asha and her children Sam and Mirabai. We met at Cowell Park in Concord, California. I played with the kids while Judie, Asha and Rhonda visited. Christian and I threw the football for a little while. I then helped the kids on the teeter totter, twirled them on a crazy twirly seat, pushed them on swing and enjoyed and awesome game of tag in, through, under and on the playground equipment. A couple of other kids at the park joined our game as well.

Fortunate for the kids, Mirabai made an over the wall comment to Asha, “An ice cream sure would be good right now. Shortly after her comment she heard the ice cream man and asked Asha for an ice cream.  Asha was generous enough to treat each of the children and parents for a refreshing ice cream – a perfect way to end a perfect afternoon.

Ice cream - A Perfect End to a Perfect Day!

Day 55 March 26, 2010 – Overnight Trip to California

Today was the kid’s first day of spring break. After dinner we started packing our bags and van for our trip to California tonight. We didn’t complete packing and loading the van until 10:00.  Once we were ready to go we changed the kids into pajamas, made the last trip to the bathroom, said prayers and piled into the van for our overnight drive to California. Yes, overnight. We like traveling at night because the kids sleep and I can make good travel time.

We let the kids watch “Nacho Libre” on the Apple computer to start our trip. After the movie we turned off the computer and tucked them in for the night.  I turned on a book on tape and laid down the miles.

Devon drove the first section until we got to the Owyhee Mountains when I took over. Judie drove between Ft. McDermitt and Winnemucca then I finished out the trip. I ran into snow and ice over the Donnor Summit making for slow slippery driving.  We enjoyed a safe and comfortable trip.

Day 54 March 25, 2010 – Football in the house

This evening after dinner the kids watched the movie “They Might Be Giants”. The movie is an inspirational football story. The movie was a mediocre movie but the boys LOVED the football sequences.

After the movie the boys were amped and the testosterone levels where high. They grabbed a small Nerf football and started playing a makeshift game of football in the basement. Basically they played one on one the object of the game being to run from one end of the basement to the other without being tackled.  Each boys consisted of one down and one run. The outcome of each confrontation equaled a tackle or one touch down.  Christian, Zayne and Hendrick played for about 90 minutes – an excellent way to burn a lot of energy.  They had a great time and Jeremy and I enjoyed a great show while protecting the house.

Day 53 March 24, 2010 – Saying good bye to another set of good friends

This evening the kids spent every moment possible with our friends the Bollschweiller’s who live just across the cul-de-sac. They’ve been our neighbors and in our church ward ever since we moved into our home. Our kids have become fast friends. Zayne, Nathan and Daniel spend almost every day together and Ke’ilani and Bailey have been in separable. Little Michael’s in there tagging along with either the girls or the boys – just depends on the day.

Judie and I have a very strong relationship with Logan and Renae as well. Logan has been working in North Dakota for the past year and far past time to get their family back together. The kids played all the way to dusk and certainly didn’t want their time together.

When tucking Ke’ilani in bed tonight the weight of losing her dearest friend fell upon her and the floodgates burst. She wept bitterly while I held her, comforting her until the release of sleep came. It’s Tough being separated from your best friend!

Day 52 – Sending the Tripples off to Alaska

For family home evening tonight we spent it with at our good friend the Erin and Shelly Whiting. They hosted a big family and friend get together to say goodbye to our good friends Airica and Travis Tripple. They leave tomorrow for Alaska.  Everyone in their family is excited at the new venture even though they naturally feel some pangs of loss of leaving friends and family behind.

The evening definitely wasn’t a boo hoo fest. We all enjoyed much laughter reminiscing of times together and excitement to hear of their plans in Alaska. Their new home will be on an island off the coast of Alaska. It sounds very remote and a place I’d like to visit.

The kids were in an out of the house playing with each other relishing every last moment together.  Tasha wrote Cynsha and Hendrick a personal note of good bye which they were very excited and pleased to receive. We’ll keep them in a memory book for them. Toward the end of the night we were able to corral them for a quick snapshot. We also grabbed a shot of the six of us.

Good Friends

True Friends!

We’ll miss you our dear friends! Bon Voyage and best of luck in your new adventure