Category 30 before Thirty

One Month To Go…

My 30th birthday is just one month away! I’m not freaking out about this birthday even though it’s a big one 🙂  I think it is because Adrian has been 30 for a while and I always just consider us being the same age. So mentally I have been 30 for a year and a half now, haha!

Back in July of 2010 I created a 30 before Thirty list.

I accomplished 27 out of 30 on my list! I’m very proud of myself!

My absolute favorite accomplished goal:  #27. Baby number 3  Claire!!!

Other favorites:

#3. Master’s Degree

#4. Stable teaching job

#26. Make Sushi


What is left:

#5. Save money for a house

This past school year was my first time back as a full time teacher so money has been tight since 2010. We tried, we really did, but there is not a house in our near future. I’m hoping within the next two years we can save up the money!

#17. Stop going to work on the weekends

Last year was a little difficult for me. I really felt as if I was drowning in paper work and prep work. This year my goal is to reduce the amount of paper work that is being done in the classroom. I am planning on creating math centers that require less grading from me. I am also planning on using the tech that is available to me. My principal supports my use of tech so I’m confident that my choices will benefit my students. (I do have a Master’s in Educational Technology after all). I’m also planning on putting as many tests on Schoolnet as possible (our learning management system). This should reduce the amount o grading that I have to do. I need to work smarter not harder this year!

#24. Apple or Cherry Picking

This one was tricky because of  the seasonal requirements of the fruit. The one weekend we had planned on Apple picking was unbearably hot and we did not want to travel so far to walk around in the heat. The cherry season always fell when we had too many weekend plans. This year we had Claire so it is out of the question right now 🙂  Maybe we’ll get it in this year…. but it will be done at least once! It is an experience my girls need!



Welcome Baby Claire

On May 28, 2013 at 12:07 p.m. we welcomed Claire Elizabeth Barnes to the world. She is our largest baby yet at 7 lbs. 2 oz and 19.5 inches long. We are totally in love!

This birth was a fairly easy one. Contractions began at 2:30 a.m. on the 27th, we went into the hospital around 4 a.m. At about 5 a.m. I was given my epidural and everything felt much better… except for the fact that I couldn’t feel my right leg at all 🙂  The labor continued to progress and she was ready to come at noon. The delivery went really well, no complications at all.

She was so wide awake and alert, it was great to look into her precious eyes. She is a hairy little one, everyone has commented on how much thick hair she has on her head. We think she looks a lot like Jillian did as a newborn. It’s always amazing to see how much they look like Adrian when they arrive. It will be interesting to see how she develops these next few weeks.

My Sister-in-Law is the best and brought me sushi to the hospital. She did this for me with Olivia 🙂 Best present ever!

My parents and my brother came a few hours later bringing the girls to see their  baby sister. It’s cute seeing my brother holding a baby! The girls were so excited to see their sister! They brought their presents for Claire and Claire had a present waiting for her big sisters. (A baby doll, baby doll diapers, baby bottles, and big sister books) Olivia was, as expected, way more interested in the baby doll than Jillian.

The first night was a little rough. She didn’t want to be put down and was feeding constantly. Then when she finally was sleeping for a good stretch the nurse came in to give her the first vaccine. :/ so much for sleep. I did let Adrian sleep most of the night, poor guy only had a very uncomfortable chair bed to sleep on.

We are just so happy to have Claire here with us, happy and healthy!

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Visting the Northern San Cities

Adrian and I decided that our first long distance trip with the girls would be up north to visit our friends Jason in San Rafael and Sydney in San Jose. We flew into San Francisco and the girls loved it! They were very well behaved on the plane (a lot had to do with having the iPad). I was concerned that their ears would be hurting but they were champs!! (I also gave them lollypops to suck on during the decent, I think it helped).

We had a slight melt down when we got our car rental. Adrian rented a mustang convertible and Olivia was a little disturbed  because Adrian just plopped her in the car and walked away, haha. She also had a melt down with the orignal car seat that we picked, but once she picked her own car seat all was well in the world according to Olivia!

On the drive from San Francisco to San Rafael, the girls were not thrilled about the top being down. It was a bit windy, and frankly, it was COLD! They warmed up to the idea while we drove through San Francisco a few days later.

It was great seeing Jason and his family! We ate at some interesting places and we visited the Farmer’s Market (2 of the 3 pomegranates I bought were delicious). We ate a wonderful home cooked meal at Jason’s house, the girls had such a blast playing with Jason’s nephews!  Adrian had mentioned I wanted to see Redwoods (it’s on my 30 before thirty list) so Jason took us to John Muir Woods. It was fabulous!! It was so peaceful along the trail and I loved seeing how large (and old) these trees were! One more thing to check off my list, yay!!

Our drive down to San Jose took us back through San Francisco. We decided to stop at Fisherman’s Warf to check out the sea lions and have lunch. We drove down Lombard Street in our little convertible, the girls loved it! We also had to go see the Russ Building. While helping Sam with a homework assignment last year, I went through old files of my grandmother and found that the Russ Family were my distant relatives from my paternal grandmother’s side. It was really neat seeing the photos I have in the file hanging in the window of the Russ building.

In San Jose, we visited the NASA Ames Research Center. Jillian says that she wants to be an astronaut when she grows up, so Adrian and I have done all that we can to keep her interested in this high aspiration. The Ames research center was really cool, it’s too bad it’s so far away, it would be a really cool field trip! Jillian and Adrian were very excited 🙂

Unfortunately when we arrived in San Jose, our friend Sydney’s dog became sick. She needed to take him to the vet so we were unable to meet up. I was able to find a trampoline place nearby and the girls and Adrian jumped for an hour. It was great because there was hardly anyone there, so they practically had the room of trampolines to themselves. After jumping up a storm, it was time to eat!. We found a delicious Korean restaurant in San Jose. Yelp had amazing reviews and I would have to agree. We got lucky and got in before the dinner rush 🙂  After that we headed to our last hotel for the trip.

Overall it was a very pleasant trip, the girls did a fantastic job!! They were great travelers! In a few years we might consider something with a longer airplane ride… maybe Disney World.


Little Traveler
John Muir Woods
John Muir Woods
John Muir Woods
John Muir Woods
John Muir Woods
John Muir Woods
Sea Lions
Jumping Adrian
Trampoline room
Ames Space Research Center
Ames Space Research Center
Ames Space Research Center


Our Mustang for the Weekend
Our Mustang for the Weekend
Our Mustang for the Weekend
John Muir Woods


Baby Barnes #3

We’re expecting Baby Barnes #3!!! We are so very excited!! We are looking forward to adding one more to our family!

Screen Shot 2012-11-14 at 5.14.27 PMbun

Master’s Graduation

I finished my Master’s Program this past December. It was a huge accomplishment and I was very proud of my work, so yesterday I walked in the graduation ceremony. It was long as graduations typically are but it felt great to walk up there and be recognized. It was also fun to see my cohort in person since I was in an online program. The student speaker was great. He talked about changing your life and changing your world. I’m not sure if I’m ready to takle the world yet but I have changed quite a bit this year in my profession. I’ve gained more confidence in my teaching and in working with my colleagues. Next stop… doctorate?? hmm I’ll need some time to think about that one. haha I need a break from writing papers for a while.

Here I am being hooded by Dr. Norman 🙂

And the Family 🙂 (The girls were done at this point and ready to go, so our choices of photos were very limited)


Camping at the Beach

To ease my way into camping,  I wanted to camp at the beach with the girls. It was an item on my 3o before Thirty list 🙂

We decided to camp at Doheny State Beach. It turned out to be a perfect weekend. The weather was beautiful and clear,  not the rain that was predicted.

When we arrived, Olivia continued to nap in her car seat while Adrian, Jillian, and I put up the tent. Jillian had fun helping daddy bang the stakes into the ground with a big rock she found. Doheny Beach is full of rocks so Jillian was in heaven! We always tend to leave somewhere with a pocket full of rocks.  Anyways, Jillian was so excited about the tent! This particular tent had a doggy door that Jillian just had to test out 🙂  Once the tent was up we moved Olivia into the tent to sleep, Jillian had to test out her sleeping bag too.

After Olivia’s nap, the girls played in the sand for a while. Adrian and I decided to take the girls for a walk down the beach. It was a warm day, so naturally we drove over to the harbor to visit the Scoop Deck. We stopped in to visit our friend Natalia, Jillian was happy 🙂

For dinner we cooked hot-dogs over the bonfire and then had smores for dessert. The girls didn’t fight us during bed time which was a blessing! I think they were both very excited at the fact that they were in princess sleeping bags.

We only camped out for one night but we had so much fun! I am now confident that our next camping adventure will be successful.


The many faces of Jillian


Photo shoot at sunset


The following morning


Anniversary Trip to Santa Barbara

Adrian and I will be celebrating our 6th wedding anniversary this Sunday. It worked out perfectly this year since it’s also Easter and spring break is nicely attached! Adrian took the week off as well. We took a four day trip up to Santa Barbara for some time away from the girls. My absolutely wonderful mother watched the girls while we were away.  It was so nice being able to get 3 nights of uninterrupted sleep. While we were up there we were able to check off something from my 30 before thirty list! I’d never been wine tasting so what better place than Santa Barbara? Since we are noobs when it comes to wine, I booked a tour. It was nice because they took us to 4 different vineyards and supplied us with lunch. At one of the vineyards, a couple, also on the tour, knew the assistant wine maker so we  got a backstage pass. We even got to try wine straight from the barrels. It was fun but it didn’t make a wine lover out of me. haha I’m not a big drinker to begin with, to be honest wine just makes me sleepy.

Here are some pictures from our wine tasting adventure.


Making Sushi

On of the items on my 30 before Thirty is to try my hand at making my own sushi. When groupon had a coupon for a sushi making class I just couldn’t resist! Adrian and I had an amazing time! The other people who were registered for the class never showed up so Adrian and I had a private lesson with the chef! We made 1 hand roll, 1 cut roll, and 5 pieces of sushi. If you live near us and are interested here is the website . The Chef was talking about adding some advanced courses. Adrian and I are considering it since we had so much fun with the class.

Sarah's Sushi


Adrian's Sushi






Scrapbooking Olivia’s First Year

Here are my scrapooks for Olivia’s first year! I am so happy that it is finally done!  This is one more thing to cross off my 30 before Thirty list!  From now on my scrapbooks will include both of the girls 🙂

Click here to view this photo book larger


Click here to view this photo book larger

Click here to view this photo book larger


My girlfriends and I spent the weekend in Vegas for a bachelorette extravaganza! We had such a blast being silly in Vegas! Here are some pictures that document our adventures.

New Lipstick!! (30 before Thirty) I received a complement on it by a Michael Jackson impersonator.

I broke my heal, and Nolan, the director of something, was able to find black duct tape to repair my shoe, I was able to enjoy the rest of the night.