Trip with Dad


Last Saturday/Sunday Brian took JJ and Tessa up to the ranch for a quick trip to check on things. We got our new pivot going and the hay barns almost built. And I got some real gems texted to me in photos ;)

Is that a chetto mustache JJ or are you smelling them before consuming?


Checking on the pivot. And look how that hay grass is growing!!


They stopped at the tractor store  of course - and didn't really ever get out of the clothes they left in. 


Tiny says "COWS!!!" She's obsessed. 


Oh JJ ;) Heff said the carted around that bag all weekend. Never been happier. Or more orange. 


Camping with Dad

While Maisie and Tess and I were in Europe - Francie got to go on her solo camping and fishing trip with her Dad! (and JJ got some Oma time... which means Oma got asked 100 questions an hour for 2 days, thanks Oma!) I got these awesome photos from Heff via text - so cute to see my big girl having SO much fun with her Dad!! They caught 30 (yes 30!) fish and kept this one for dinner.

a stop at 5 Dot Ranch to check out our meat purveyor

the first night of camping it was actually pouring rain... so they stayed at Oma and Opa's cabin at Lake Almanor. and played THREE hours of board games. Francie could play all night - and beat her dad as often as she could :)

and the next morning - a successful turkey hunt!

Canada Ice Fishing

We had an awesome adventure to Banff Canada the first week in March! We had some airline miles to burn and a free week so we scouted around and picked Banff (ok I admit I it wasn't the poolside pina colada trip I was imagining - but my husband won) We invited Oma, Jannie and Grampa to join us - four kids, ten adults hands = real vacation! I have so many pictures so breaking it up - here are the photos from our full day of ice fishing out on a frozen lake in Calgary - quite the adventure!

plane ride was pretty easy, less than 3 hours! But on a small plane with 2 and 2 seats on each side so we were all spread out. It took us about 45 minutes to print our boarding passes and get an infant pass too. Turns out it causes some problems when 5 of 9 travelers are named MarySomething Heffernan! Don't even get me started on customs...

we started out the drive from Calgary airport to Banff with two Suburbans for all of us and all of our gear. We took JJ and Tess - the grandparent mobile had the big girls

Backree on the other sled

what a tourist

some of the scenery

We drove out about an hour to go ice fishing! The girls were so excited. I had been cooped up in the hotel the first two days while the crowd took the big girls skiing but Tess and I decided to brave the cold and adventure out for some fun. I was so proud of Jannie and her willingness to do this crazy stuff with the girls too! (Not that she hasn't always been adventurous- but the great outdoors Heffernan style is pushing it!)

Grampa and JJ - ready to rock the long trail down to the lake. Looks just like pictures of holding me and my siblings bundled up in the snow - except in color ;)


Jannie and Grampa - the guide taught us to say WHISKEY when we smile! :)

the girls and the bait hitching a ride

Brian and Oma - the expert fishers!

I swear Tess is in there somewhere

OUT in the middle of a frozen lake. Took me a bit to get used to this...

we found our ice hut

the lone boys

and the girls inside the hut - don't worry the ice holes were only 6 inches wide

we let the girls and the grandmas fish for while in the hut - it was a little crowded!

here fishy fishy

Dad didn't last long without a fishing pole in his hand

Tess says "what the heck are we doing out here mom? the hotel was so warm!"

FIRST FISH! Didn't take long!

purty. JJ was not a fan

Grampa warmed up Tiny so I could have a turn (didn't catch anything, I never do!)

Jannie didn't either - we are not the fisherwomen I guess. Left that to Oma and Heff and Grampa!

but we made sure grampa got a turn - just like the old days on the Lake Tahoe pier!

the girls ventured off to make a fresh hole in the ice with the guide

Happy girls

very happy dad

they have the patience I don't

Jannie is bundled up in that ice hut with a heater and JJ - smart girls!

Tess and I just kept busy taking selfies of ourselves and watching the fishing. She's thrilled ;)

hot chocolate break while dad mans the pole

Maisie back for more action

Jannie and her girls

Maisie was so proud of the "rainbow" she made in the snow

and snow angels

OMA caught this fish - Jannie held it for a photo and when I Instagramed this pic she got all the fish-catching credit - just to set the record straight Jannie wants to make sure everyone knows this was Oma's fish!

yum yum

not giving up - she wanted to stay there all day

so pretty

lunch time!

Family photo

and that's a wrap - back to the hotel for afternoon cocktails!!!

Duck Hunting Girls

Heff took the big girls to Chico for a duck hunting expedition a couple weeks ago (finally uploading pictures from the little camera!) He drove up with Francie, Maisie and Janie to Red Bluff and left JJ sleeping at Oma's when he left with the girls at 5am to hit the duck blind. They were pretty excited to go and loved seeing the decoys, ducks and riding four wheelers - but it got pretty cold out there!

still dark out with one of the guys who took them out - they are crazy!

in the duck blind

love these faces on both of them

love the pink accents on my hard-core camo chicks

they got three big ones - don't worry they didn't miss, those "live ones" are decoys :)

they have a pretty good dad to take them out on his duck hunting trips (and I'll admit he's pretty lucky they put up with it! I went once when we were dating- it's COLD and EARLY in the morning)

they had a good dog out there to fetch the cold ducks, Francie would have gone after them but Heff told her there were Jellyfish in the pond (KIDDING! :)

It's COLD Dad!

Francie asked to ride with the guide - so he took her on a wild one :)

driving fast through the orchards with a pup on the grill. awesome.

Maisie cam (or JJ?) driving to the next stop that afternoon

JJ checking out the loot back at Oma's house

they went to Llano Seco Ranch to check out their cattle operation -

the girls found the feed barn

love this shot of Dad talking shop while the girls played in the corn feed

not a bad playground

Maisie just stopping to enjoy a stale rice cracker they feed the pigs

RELAXING at it's best

cold drizzly day in Chico (perfect for hunting those birds!)

them hogs. BIG hogs

bam bam

Trip to the SF Zoo

Saturday morning Heff packed up the three big girls to go to the SF Zoo so I could work at Area 151 and see how things were going on day 2! Once I got there, everything was running smoothly (SO much easier than the restaurant business, like 1000x easier!) I was sad to miss their fun so I caught Heff at the gas station and Tess and I piled in the truck with them. It was a surprisingly warm sunny day at the Zoo and we powered through to all the animals with a short stop for tri-tip sandwiches and beers!

parked and ready to roll

first stop - gorillas


yes we brought a child to the Zoo without shoes. oops :)

the fountain - half way point through the zoo calls for relaxing

super excited to let me take their picture (even Heff might have been complaining :)

duck pond

watch out for the black bear

This kid gets crazier everyday - love the faces she makes

and her perch on the "pack-pack"

funny Maisie wearing the peacock like a headdress (Francie was not amused - this was the WRONG way!)

"THIS is how you do it Maisie."

They made Dad check his wingspan

no one was having my picture taking so I had to take a self portrait of me and Tess on her first trip to the zoo

and without the double chin :)

water break

Kids Farm (my favorite part)

Bee exhibit (JJ was freaking out "SHOO bee! No bee!!" since she's been stung twice!

power walking to the treat shop at the end

JJ has to do everything "SELF!"

come on - just take a picture with Mom!?

treat shop yielded pink binoculars. Can you spy Francie?