Thursday, July 10, 2014

HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA!

Now that I've had a few days to recover from all the activity, I'm up for the challenge of blogging about the 4th of July weekend. We packed a huge punch into that four night/three day weekend.


We started out with our town's fireworks on Thursday night. We still cannot figure out why in the heck they always do them the night before the 4th, but we roll with it, cause well, we have to!

We continued our long standing tradition with some of our most fun friends and had a backyard BBQ.


The kids had fun playing in the freezing cold pool, and avoided most dirt piles in the yard ;)





Milo couldn't get enough of the squirt guns I picked up...and did sneak attacks on most everyone.



***
The next day, the 4th, we ventured out to A Taste of Minnesota.


We had never been before, and this year it was relocated from St. Paul to Waconia due to the recent flooding in many areas of the state.  It really wasn't much closer, just in a different direction. But still, it provided a nice country drive, which seemed very fitting for celebrating America.



Our thoughts on the event? It was a bit spendy, and nothing spectacular, but still fun to experience something new.

From there we hit a local parade, where the kids got just the right amount of candy to satisfy their sweet teeth.




We ended our night with a little private sparkler show in our own backyard.



***
As if that wasn't enough excitement for the weekend, Nick and I got to pass the kids off to Grandma on Saturday, and go see the live broadcast of the Prairie Home Companions 40th anniversary celebration. We may be old souls, but after listening to the show on MPR for years, it was such a fun experience to see it live.


 
We sat on our quilt on the lawn of Macalester College, front row, eating our food truck tacos and drinking overpriced beers, soaking up the sun and each others company. It was such a great night.


***
A holiday weekend wouldn't be complete without swimming of some kind, so we did just that. With many thanks to some sweet friends and her parents pool, the kids had a blast. (And I realized how hard it is watching three kids around water! But worth it for sure.)




The 4th of July is the peek of summer for me, and this year it delivered big time.

Happy Birthday America!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

SUMMER DAYS.


 We've been working hard on checking off our summer fun list.


And although it's so fun to go seek new adventures, sometimes it's also nice to lay low and stay close to home. After the busy holiday weekend, we needed just that.

This spring, Nana sent us a super cool popsicle maker, that freezes the pops in just minutes. Perfect for impatient little ones with hungry bellies :)




They were pretty tasty, but melted a bit faster than the kids could eat. Hence the nakedness. Plus it was hot out! They asked for me to fill the pool so they could rinse off and cool down ...but a storm was rolling in so we went with this plan instead. Kept 'em busy for quite awhile! (Really, please don't mind the nakedness.)
 



It's such fun to find the joy in simple pleasures. We're loving these summer days.


Thursday, June 26, 2014

STRAWBERRY PICKING.

After we got massive amounts of rain for days on end, it was exciting to hear that instead of flooding a nearby berry batch, all that rain actually helped them grow into sweet, juicy, ready to pick strawberries! We know the season doesn't last long, so we headed on out there to claim our share.


It was a great day for berry picking. Not too hot. A slight breeze. Limited mosquitoes.


Everyone was eager and willing to pick, at first. But after they filled their bellies full (which was totally okay, I asked!), they were fair weather friends and wanted to go home.


Luckily, my girl took one for the team and helped me pick and fill our basket.



We managed to pick an impressive 13 pounds! They add up fast, apparently. But that was good. This was a one time shot for us, so the more the merrier.



We came home and washed, cut, and washed some more. We made a double batch of strawberry rhubarb jam. We ate a few more for lunch, then froze the rest. We've been dropping them into our smoothies and homemade popsicles and they are such a treat!

So grateful for days like these!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

BECAUSE SOMETIMES I'M A FUN MOM.

Sometimes I get a little discouraged from blog writing, because I feel that my story isn't really that exciting to tell. It's just our every day life and I live it how I would, even if I weren't documenting it. I do activities with my kids because it's fun and makes us feel good, not because I'm trying to be some super mom. Lord knows I am not one of those. There are a few blog friends who I turn to for inspiration, and the thing I like most about them is that they are real. They write in their "real" voice and they capture their "real" life. That's all I ever wanted to be, was real. I'm reminded that I blog mostly for myself and my kids, to capture the small, fleeting moments that I would otherwise forget.


 
This week we are in the midst of some serious rain. Patches of sunshine. But mostly rain. And mosquitoes. Good Lord, the mosquitoes. Orelia asked me why God made bugs, and let me just tell you that's a dang good question. It sure would be nice to play on our deck, Heaven forbid our backyard, without coming back inside peppered with welts the size of dimes.

So yesterday, I thought it was supposed to rain and planed an indoor activity for us, and then it turned out to be blazing hot and sunshiney. But whatever. We stuck to plan A.


I usually am a pretty big stickler about no candy in the morning (like say, after breakfast) but the kids thought I was totally awesome for bending my rules for this trip :) I was reminded of this place over the weekend when Nick and I passed by. We've never been and its close to home, so I added it to our summer fun list.



The place really is fun. Lots of candy from my childhood, that I can't believe I actually ate. All I remember is stuck paper and biting wax. Sounds delish.

And these. They're just funny. And super awesome role models for our kids :)



I let Orelia and Milo each pick out ONE thing. They didn't even buck at it. I think they were just so happy that I agreed to buy them candy. They chose carefully however, which surprised me. They would carry something around for a bit, and put it back when they found something they liked better. Orelia carried around a bag of German chocolate for awhile (she's a girl after my own heart) but ultimately settled on a bag of salt water taffy. She reasoned that she wanted something she had never had before, and she wanted the most bang for her buck. Can't argue with that!


Thank goodness I was able to sway Milo away from a gummy snake as tall as himself. In the end he chose a Superman PEZ.




After we made our choices, we sat out in the heat and enjoyed the deliciousness.




And there we were. Just making memories. Another day in the life.