Lick Observatory is a University of California observatory nearby us on the mountains above San Jose.
After Thanksgiving we tried to drive out to the observatory. Despite countermeasures, carsickness killed the trip about a fifth of the way there. After Christmas we tried again, but instead of driving the mountain road all the way from Livermore we drove the highway route around in to San Jose and then up the shorter mountain road. This time we made it.
Corinne was a demon in the visitor's center and had to be taken outside. She did manage to stay quiet on the Lick Refractor tour for about 10 minutes before she had to be taken out.
The Lick Refractor is mostly a historical relic. They use it for tours, public viewing nights, and training students.
This is the same road at the top and bottom of the picture. The biker went across the bottom just a minute or so before taking that switch back. That's the kind of driving you have to do to visit the observatory.
The haze was settled in to the valleys and I thought the way the ridges stacked up looked pretty neat, but I don't think my pictures do it justice.
Heather had a Holiday Concert for school on the 18th. She had a blast. The program was all 4 kindergarten classes at her school so the multi-purpose room was packed. Luckily she's a head taller than most of the other kids in her class so I was still able to get a couple pictures of her through the crowd.
Then it was quickly in to Christmas Eve with our own little "program." Heather read us "Santa from Cincinnati":
After the program the girls opened their presents for each other:
Corinne fell asleep clutching the trowel from the garden tool set. Heather woke up at no-one-knows-but-possibly-2-something and colored in about 3 feet of her 10-foot space coloring roll.
After bed Santa arrived bringing a fully edible dig site for Heather:
And in the very early morning we snapped an obligatory don't-move-yet shot:
You'll notice it is still dark outside. Heather had been up possibly since as yearly as 2-something, but no later than 4. Corinne was up starting at 4:30. We held them off until 6:30, but couldn't keep them contained any longer.
Corinne got a chair in her favorite color:
Heather was a super helper handing out gifts from under the tree.
Corinne is enamored of this plane.
Jess is pleased with her yarn bowls (from different parties she, luckily, received a large one and a small one--so she can use both).
After a brief break for some much-needed breakfast, the sun had risen, and the unwrapping was complete. Now, nap time.
We tried to make corn flake wreaths today. They sort of worked. Corinne did not like having butter on her hands, so she jumped ship early on, but Heather helped shape them.