Monday, April 26, 2010

The tomatoes are coming!

This last weekend was pretty crazy. We had some major storms throughout the entire Southern part of the Country and it made it's way up through TN and KY. The tv was set onto the local news all Friday night on through the entire next day. In the morning we got the safest place in the house ready just incase we needed it for a tornado shelter. The kids put in their blankets, cushions from the couch and some toys. Gavin attempted to rationalize needing his bat cave in the very tiny bathroom to play with while the storm was going on. 

Yeah, it didn't last long in there. The storms started to get bad around lunch time so the kids put on their bike helmets ready for the TOMATOES to come. (Yes, they call tornados, tomatoes). They asked where we were going to live once the house was destroyed???  I guess I am happy they really didn't understand to what extent how bad this was. If a tornado did hit our house that would be the very least of our worries, and if we would be able to have any worries at all. 

We ended up needing to be in the room for about 5 minutes when it got really bad. When the sky turned black and the rain was hitting the house sideways I made Aaron get in there too. I didn't want them to be scared of the weather but I also wanted them to have a healthy fear for what damage it can do. 

The next day we drove around post to see lots of trees down and the swimming pool sign destroyed. Thankfully there was no major damage in the area, unfortunately Mississippi was not so lucky. The kids saw on the news how people died down there and they asked why God protected us but didn't protect them... I really didn't know what to say. I still don't. How do you explain that to 6 and 5 year olds when I don't know the answer either. 

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Tuesday Ten

This is my first Tuesday Ten and I am not sure how this is going to turn out. 

1. As I am rushing out the door this morning to bring Gracie to school I notice Ella's clasp on her car seat is broken.  After calling Britax they said they will send out a new one in 5-7 business days... so am I not supposed to go anywhere for the next week or so??? Maybe it is time to get her into the next size up car seat...

2. Laundry. Loads of it.  My kitchen table now has stacks upon stacks of neatly folded clothes on it. 

3. When Ella was born I had every intention of  being the perfect mom with her. 
     -Breast feeding until she was at least a year- (which was shut down early due 
      to hospital and her being allergic to everything). 
    - Having all her toys being organic/ non plastic- (now she is getting bored 
      with them).
    - Making my own homemade organic baby food... well I still make it but I am 
      finding myself, more and more, heading over to Whole Foods and buying the 
      ready made stuff. I have to admit I am   
      feeling like a bit of a failure. 

4. Ella stood up for a whole 10 seconds by herself today in the middle of the pack-n-play. She got scared when Ava, Gavin and I started screaming and clapping for her. 

5. Took the kids to meet Aaron for lunch at the park. It was Ella's first time in the swing and she loved it for the first min until Aaron decided she needed to go higher and scared her.

6. I went early to pick Grace up from school today and her teacher told me that she was so wonderful, listening, following instructions and completing her work that she was the only one able to go to the treasure box. She also told me that she would take an entire classroom filled with children exactly like Grace. It is always nice to hear that your kids are well behaved and do good in school from their teacher. Grace is a wonderful little girl and I am so happy that I am blessed to be her mom.

7. I slept for 10 hours last night and I am still tired today. On the way to picking Grace up from school Ihit Dunk'n Donuts for coffee. I was worried I wouldn't be able to sleep tonight... yeah, I'm good to goto bed right now. 

8. I have over 75,000 pictures on my computer! I really need to get my butt in gear to upload them to a site and have them printed out.  

9. My truck is almost at 100,000 miles and I pray it lasts us at LEAST another year. We can't afford the house we are going to build and a new truck.  

10. I keep checking the weather hoping it changes for Danielle and Libby 1/2 marathon this weekend. As of right now it is raining and 74 degrees. Even if the weather is less than perfect I am excited to finally see some friends again!!! You guys better call me!!!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Rest Stop

Last Friday Aaron received a surprise day off so we packed up the kids and headed to Chicago for the weekend. It was a good weekend to go up there. My Grandpa had kids night for his American Legion, my sister April's birthday and my Dad's birthday too. The drive takes us around 7 hours if we make only one short stop but on the way home we needed to take a longer break. We came across a rest stop for Rend Lake in Southern IL. WOW. That is the reaction we had when we pulled up. So thankfully I had my iphone to capture these pictures.  

Of course the kids head straight for the lake. Aaron started skipping stones and then tried to teach the kids. 

Ava started to look for a perfect flat rock. 
And found it!

Gavin kept trying to do it with no luck. 
Hopefully by the end of summer he will be a pro. 

Ella loved being out side and kept laughing at the kids. Of course they were getting a big kick out of trying to make her laugh too!

I think this is my favorite picture that day, 
Ava, Grace and Gavin racing up the hill to go to the park. 

Grace and Ava won to get on the sea saw first. 

There were dandelions everywhere! 
The kids would see who could find the perfect one and then blow on it.

Before we climbed back into the truck for the last 2+ hours of our trip home the kids ran across the bridge a few times. 

It was a great break from the long drive. We finally got home after 9pm to four very exhausted kids who woke up asking where are we going to on our next trip. I love road trips and now I know they do too!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Take me out to the Cubs game

On Thursday Aaron was looking up the Cubs schedule and saw that they were playing the Reds over the weekend. He looked at me and asked what I thought about a road trip this weekend? Of course, I am always up for traveling! So it was set, an impromptu trip to Cincinnati. Aaron was in charge of the tickets and I took care of everything else. We left on Sat morning and drove the quick 4 hours, checked into the very cool Art Deco hotel and went out to find some food.

We happened upon a new Mexican restaurant not too far from the hotel that was unbelievably great.

We walked around a bit after checking out the sites and turned in for the night. 

The next morning we went to It's just Crepes for breakfast. They were so good and as big as their heads!

After we decided to walk a mile down to a market. Well no one told us that we would be walking through the WORST part of Cincinnati. We were getting weird looks from everyone waking up on abandon buildings doorsteps. All we could do is walk fast, smile and say good morning. When we finally made it to the market we asked what was a good walking way back to the hotel and they just gave us the ARE YOU NUTS looks. They offered to call us a cab! Aaron decided that we would be ok of we just stayed next to the 4 lane highway and walk at a brisk pace. We did make it back safe just in time to go to the ball park.

We walked down to the Great American Ball Park and took the usual pictures outside with the sign behind the kids. Growing up going to Wrigley Field I am a bit of a snob when it comes to ball parks. I have to admit this was a really great one! It had the old school feeling with all the new convinces. I would never trade it for Wrigley but it was nice to visit.

Aaron did a really great job at getting us good seats! The place was packed and the weather was perfect. We waited a few innings then Aaron went off to get some beer and hotdogs. What is it about being a a baseball game, the beer always tastes so much better?!

It was a great day at the park even though the Cubs lost. 

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Life's a Beach

Spring break this year my family rented a house on Grayton Beach, FL. Which is a bike ride away from Watercolor and Seaside. It was us, my mom, Kelly, Steve, Braden, Carter, Riley, April, Ben and Brian. 

The house was amazing! 4 bed rooms, one large bunk room that slept all 6 kids and 7 bathrooms. The views of the beach from the house couldn't be beat. 

We started each morning with some breakfast and, of course, the beach!

This was Ella's first time sitting on the beach. She was OK with it at first. She watched the waves go up and down and was touching the sand not knowing what to make of it.  She started screaming once the cold water went up to her legs. She didn't want ANYTHING to do with the sand or ocean after that for the rest of the day. She would start to cry if I tried to put her down even on a towel. By the end of the week she was eating and crawling around on the sand with no worries. 

Followed by lunch by the pool!

Downtown Grayton Beach

One morning that was a little too chilly to head to the beach we decided to walk into Grayton Beach. It is a cute little town on the beach. There is not much there, a souvenir shop and Red Bar. We decided to stop in there since I have heard such great things about the place, we had beer and some fries. 

I felt a little weird bring the kids into Red Bar. It looks like it would be fun at night, it is always packed so it must be, but it was a little shady in the middle of the day. 


Ava and Gavin's 5th Birthday at the beach!

Ava from the minute she woke up put on her HAPPY BIRTHDAY headband and wore it all day long. It was so cute. She was a little embarrassed when people kept coming up to her saying Happy Birthday.

It was a fun day to have a birthday! We took a ride into Seaside to go have lunch and look around. We started off taking a picture at this little mexican food shack. We ended up eating there another night and it was really great. 

Then we had lunch at this great pizza place right on the beach. The outside seating was amazing. Gavin wanted shrimp so they let us bring in some from the Shrimp Shack a few doors down. 

After lunch we walked around the town a little bit looking in stores. I thought their post office was just too cute so I had to take a picture. 

We stopped at Queen Bee Cupcakes and let Ava and Gavin pick out their birthday cupcakes for that night. Almost everyone got a different flavor. I had the Key Lime and it was so yummy!

Next we had to get some gelato. I think Aaron had more fun there than the kids!

After we finished the gelato we headed back to the house to hit the pool.

Then had dinner, sang Happy Birthday and opened presents. 

Ava and Gavin's Birthday 5

1. Wants to be a princess when she grows up 
(which she will be perfect for!)
2. Hasn't met a dress she didn't like
3. Wants to live on the beach
4. Loves to color
5. Loves taking pictures with my camera

1. IS going to be Batman when he grows up. 
Including the Batcave, Batmobile and motorcyle.
2. Favorite song is Gives you H*ell and Pink's Rockstar
3. Favorite colors are Green
4. Favorite foods- Hotdogs, chicken and sushi
5. Favorite activities playing outside, riding his bike 
and being with his cousins


The last morning at the beach house I wanted to take some pictures of the kids. Well, it didn't work out exactly how I planned...  It was really cold. Poor Ella's hands and feet were turning blue. Ava and Gavin wanted nothing to do with this whole picture taking business. I am lucky Ava is looking at the camera in this picture. Gavin, no such luck. This is the best of the bunch which I still think turned out pretty good.

Grace has never met a camera she didn't like! 

The last family night in Florida

 We headed into Seaside on Friday night for a family dinner at the pizza place and a movie on the lawn. We all were really bummed that it had to end the next morning with goodbyes but it was still a fun night. 

After dinner we headed over to get our seats on the lawn for
 Alvin and the Chipmunks 2

Saturday morning we packed up the house and said goodbye to everyone. They headed to the airport and we drove a mile over to the Watercolor Inn. We were not quite ready to leave FL yet so I went to the front desk hoping they had a room available. Thankfully they did! We unpacked what we needed and headed out on a bike ride through Watercolor. It is absolutely beautiful. I am in love with almost every house there and would love to live there the whole summer. 

When we returned back to the room we found this waiting for us. It was an invitation to a bonfire on the beach that night! 

We took some showers and got ready to ride our bikes 
over to Seaside for some dinner. 

We had a wonderful vacation with our family! 
We were so sad to get back in the truck the next day to head home.