Sunday, July 31, 2011

Boys Weekend Woohoo

Is it just me or does Kyle look like he's 12 in this picture?

The boys got to go with dad for a boys camping weekend. They had a wonderful time hanging out with grandma and grandpa at Clear Lake in Iowa. I can't share details since what happens in Clear Lake stays in Clear Lake but Corey took some fun pictures. I can share those...

Girls Weekend Woohoo

Cathy's stallions

At the horse show

Had a super fun girls weekend at Cathy's ranch. Cathy has 9 horses. Needless to say, there was a lot of horsing around. What can be better for the soul than some girl time? We went to a horse show on Saturday and learned that horse moms can be scary. You don't want to mess with horse moms. They can be really mean and they cuss like construction workers.

It was fun to do some announcing at the show since I am normally quite shy around strangers. Yeah, right. It was really cool to see the 3 year old riding the horse around the poles. So cute! I also learned that horse shows have more bling than Hollywood Boulevard. Shiny belts, stirrups, boots and helmets everywhere.

On Sunday, Cathy and I trekked to Austin where she had choir practice and I had free time. I visited the Spam Museum. Kind of cool. Did some shopping. Found some good deals. The best part was sitting at Caribou Coffee eating and slurping, reading the paper, and being totally anonymous. No one knew me. Sometimes that is really blissful. I enjoyed my time alone I must say.

Tonight, I left Cathy to her mowing and the dragon flies. Another great girls weekend had come to a close. Can't wait to drive around the yard again... in the car.

Back in Winona I went for a walk with Snaps and we got some great evening pictures. This is from the river road.

Summer Break Day 36

Hmm, since I am writing this on Sunday and Friday (Day 36) was 2 days ago I have already forgotten what exciting events occured on that day. Oh, wait, it's all coming back to me.

I packed the boys and Corey for camping and shipped them off to Clear Lake, Iowa, for the weekend. Then I went shopping for some deals and left town around 5 for my girls' weekend at Star Hill Ranch, Resort and Casino. Truth be told, there is no resort or casino but it is a ranch. It's my friend's ranch and I love spending the weekend there. Pictures from the weekend on the next post...

Day 36 Life Lesson: It's hard to say goodbye but it's awesome to say hello.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Summer Break Day 35

If you put a hot dog in the microwave for 6 minutes your house will smell bad for a long time.

Day 35 Life Lesson: When babysitting, always keep an eye on the 4 year old.

Summer Break Day 33 & 34

Yikes, the days are running together. I'm feeling lazy. I don't do much at all around the house. I need to step it up. BOYS! BOOOOOOYS!

A recent study found that cell phones do not increase the risk of brain tumors in children. Ohhh-kaaay? I mean, really, who is doing these studies and how are they gathering this information? Are children sitting in a white room somewhere with phones duct-taped to their heads? I don't get it.

Day 33 & 34 Life Lesson: You might be happier if you never turned the TV on again.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Summer Break Day 32

Monday, Monday...

Okay, the summer is getting long and I have nothing to say. Let's see, maybe I could just make something up. Here's something exciting: I took Kyle to see Dr. Kelly and found out that the disgusting sore on his toe is a wart. Kyle had no interest in getting it frozen off with the giant nitrous oxide tank so we are putting Compund W bandaids on it. Probably for the next year. Okay, maybe not that long. We'll see.

Day 32 Life Lesson: If your sister-in-law tells you it's a wart, don't bother seeing a doctor. She's always right.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Summer Break Day 30 & 31

My three sons are obsessed with water. They like to make paper roads for their cars and then pour water all over the paper. Of course, they have colored on the paper with markers so that then runs all over the carpet and turns it pink. Nice.

On Thursday, Cooper got to take his first trip to the MOA. He picked the long straw and got to ride along with our St. Louis gang and Gramsie. He was extremely impressed with the sheer size of the mall. He brought some legos back for himself and his brothers.

Super sitter Heather took the little brothers to the pool while I went golfing. They had a super great time.

On Friday, we went to Lark Toys with some friends. The boys hadn't ever been there so that was a fun adventure for them. They were very disappointed that we didn't do the mini golf but otherwise had a fun time exploring. Only Cooper went on the super fast and scary carousel. Yeah, that's right, my sons are scaredy cats.

Life Lessons: Even if you're scared, try it anyway.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Summer Break Day 27, 28 & 29

The rest of our St. Louis gang arrived on Monday. We didn't even know we were celebrating 40 years of friendship. Wow! We are very lucky to know each other. We have had a blast with our friends. The girls are loving trucks, legos, shooting baskets and chalk drawing. The pool was fun, refreshing and sort of cool. We walked in the neighboring garden that felt like a rain forest in the heat and humidity. And so great that our friend, Delaney, had a birthday we could celebrate with her. We love having them here.

Life Lessons from the week: Life is so much better when we all get along. Sharing is really, really hard when you're 4. It's really cool to have a friend for 40 years.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

World Cup Weekend

Some of our St. Louis family arrived on Saturday. It is so great to have them here for a few days. They were here last year when we watched the men play in the World Cup, only to be defeated before the final. Not so of this visit. The women came through and played in the World Cup final today. As you can see by a few of the photos, some of it was a bit boring, some of it extremely tense, and some of it very disappointing. USA women, we are proud of you and Japan we are so happy that there is good news for your country after so much heartache this past year.
We are excited for more of our St. Louis family to arrive on Monday. We will have fun despite the brutal heat and humidity.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Summer Break Day 26

Inside listening to it thunder and rain all darn day. Surprisingly, we had a pretty peaceful day.

I went to Zookeeper with my friend Snaps. Super dumb but still great to get out.

When I exited the theater there was a big ole rainbow in the sky.

Day 26 Life Lesson: Don't finish the race on the wrong horse.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Summer Break Day 25

Okay then, I just realized that the AC has been on for 2 days with the windows open. No wonder it's felt so cool outside.

Golf day today. I shot a 50, which is really good for me and golfing well makes for a really fun night.

Day 25 Life Lesson: Hitting straight makes life great.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Summer Break Day 24

And then there was one.

Cam wouldn't go with his swimming class today and Coop's instructor let him go under water and he took in water so he isn't going back.

Alrighty then.

On a more positive note I took the boys around the small lake tonight. Coop and I walked and the little brothers scootered. Other than Cam running people off the path because he has no clue about road rules it went fairly smoothly. We started to go around again but Ky wiped out so we called it a night.

Day 24 Life Lesson: If you don't make waves, no one will know you're in the water.

Summer Break Day 23

We made it to swimming lessons today. Cooper is not so comfortable in the water so I was very proud to see him challenge himself. Kyle has turned into a little fish and it is great to see him right at home in the water. Cameron waltzed right over to his group and had a fun time with the preschool group.
Day 23 Life Lesson: Some days you have to work really hard just to keep your head above water.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Summer Break Day 22

Huh? Cam has been on the loose again.

Day 22 Life Lesson: Some times you find gems in unexpected places and in unexpected people.

Karate Weekend

Busy weekend for Cooper and Corey. Coop participated in his first karate tournament. He told me his stomach hurt because he was so nervous. They both did really well. Both of them got medals in all of their events. Way to go! If you have never been to a karate tournament it is quite an experience. There is a lot of formality. Bow here, bow there, bow now, wait, get back there, you forgot to bow. There is more up and down than a Catholic Mass.
Judges sit in the corners of a square ring (is that an oxymoron) and hold up scores. I don't care what anyone says, Corey is a perfect 10 (see photo). Unfortunately, I didn't see one competition that Corey was in because he and Cooper happened to be competing at the same time. I missed seeing Corey beat up guys who are half his age. Darn!
At the dinner Saturday night, Coop was awarded his yellow belt, one stripe and Corey was awarded his brown belt. So exciting. Corey has been working very hard for 3 years so it was really cool to reach that milestone. About 3 more years to a black belt. I am so proud of both of them.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Summer Break Day 21

Karate seminars for Corey and Cooper tonight. The little brothers hung out at home with their crabby mom :-)

Short visit to the pool earlier in the day. My favorite godchild came along. Okay, my ONLY godchild. I couldn't tell if she was having fun or just tolerating politely all the small children hanging on her. In any case, I love it when she hangs out with us.

Day 21 Life Lesson: Fall down 6 times get up 7.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Summer Break Day 20

Really? Day 20? It feels like day 200. Cameron just burped on me and then said, " www dot excuse me dot com".  He keeps talking to me in website address language. We are so screwed when he starts kindergarten.
www dot itsthursday dot com - yippee! That means golf night. Yes! My favorite golf bud didn't arrive until the 5th hole, though, so I was very lonely. www dot holyflippin'gnats dot com. What's with the gnats this year? They were up my nose, in my hair, in my face, under my glasses, I mean come on!
Have you ever seen someone swing their club and the end goes flying off? It is www dot wetyourpantslaughing dot com funny. Down went the swing up went the nine wood - but only the head. (see photo)
The boys got some fun stuff tonight from Coach Smith. Men are never good with sizes. (see photo) Thanks, Coach!
Karate testing tonight for Corey and Cooper. It's a big weekend of karate with the local tourney and all. Should be fun watching a bunch of old guys beat each other up. It's a lot of fun for the first 4 hours but then everybody's bare feet get a little stinky and I start gagging.
www dot day20life lesson dot com: When all those about you are losing their heads... keep yours for the next hole.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Summer Break Day 19

One of the highlights of my summer last year was going on an adventure with our friend Zane and our friends the Kennedys. As you can imagine, I was very excited to go again this year. It was a beautiful night for an outing. We walked from Zane's house to Lakeview Drive-In where we checked out the classic cars and the yummy ice cream. Zane is so good for me because he laughs at all my jokes. I hope he never stops laughing at me.
After the drive-in we trekked off to feed the ducks and get hissed at by the geese. What a great use for old bread. I wonder how it composts. One should really wear rubber boots at the lake because it is one giant goose poop mine field down there.
As we were feeding the ducks, we heard the star spangled banner so we hurried off to the bandshell. It was fun to see so many familiar faces at the concert.
We finally arrived back at Zane's house after dark with our glow bracelets guiding our way. I loved our 2nd Annual Zaney Adventure.
Day 19 Life Lesson: Be grateful, be very, very grateful.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Summer Break Day 18

It didn't really seem like a Tuesday with Corey being home. It has been so great to have him home for 4 straight days. I missed him a lot. He didn't even have any work calls - woohoo.

We took another trip to the pool this afternoon. Megan and Makayla joined us again. O and C were there so all the cousins had lots of fun together.

Kyle had a game tonight. It's really fun watching him. He loves baseball.

Corey got stuck installing a new garage door opener today. He spent most of the day on it. Not fun for your last vacation day. I'm so thankful to be rid of that Genie. It can go back in its bottle.

Day 18 Life Lesson: Be careful what you wish for.

4th of July Weekend Part Two

The boys stayed overnight at my parent's house so my dad, Corey and me could go early morning fishing. We went out around 7am on Monday morning hoping to catch some big bass like my dad caught the previous morning. Well, needless to say, it was quiet and peaceful, no whining, no complaining (okay, maybe a little) and also no big fish. Bummer! Except for the gnats, it was a really nice 4 hours of solitude. Maybe next time.

After that, I was in desperate need of a long nap. I didn't get anything but a crink in my neck. Is that a word, "crink", maybe it's crick. Anyway, Corey was stuck making the potluck hot dish made famous in Minnesota. We needed it for a gathering later in the day. The boys hung out doing their usual lego and car activities.

We ventured off to a super fun party Monday night. Coop and Cam had a blast hanging on for dear life in the back of a four-wheeler and I had a nervous breakdown watching. Kyle passed on the riding. Mike and Laurie have a vineyard on their property so it was very educational to get a tour. Grapes can be very interesting. Who knew? I hung out with a bunch of strangers who turned out to be a bit drunk and slap happy. The evening ended with amazing backyard fireworks. Very impressive, Mike! The boys want to go back again - today.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

4th of July Weekend Part One

Nothing better on a hot summer day than the pool. We took some cousins along with us. A great time was had by all.

I love it when Coop volunteers to make dinner. He goes all out. He makes the table fancy, he whips up dips and salads. It is a real treat. Today's theme was patriotic, of course. He made a red, white and blue sauce (ketchup and ranch dressing in a blue bowl). He made chicken sausages, toasted french bread, favorite noodles (pasta and tomato soup) and my personal favorite, "veteran vegetables" (peas). He thoroughly enjoyed bossing all his sous chefs around but always said please. At one point I told him he was making me look bad and he said I was doing "just fine". How nice of him. And how about that patriotic fruit bowl - strawberries, blueberries and whipped cream. Yum! Before we ate, Cooper said we had to stand up and say the pledge of allegiance to the flag in the center of the table. The brothers praised him through the whole meal. We all agreed it was a really great night.

Uh, yeah, who takes a dictionary along on a fishing trip so they have something to d0? However, the weird thing is that it was Cameron who brought the dictionary along. It's like his blankie or something. He can't leave home without it.

On Saturday, we took the boat out for about 4 minutes. Okay, more like 2 hours but it should have been 4 minutes. We went to Bartlett Lake (by the airport) hoping to catch some fish and have a good time out on the water. Not so much. But check out that picture, doesn't it actually look like we are having fun? In reality, Corey and I were screaming every 3 seconds for the boys to stop whining. I think I threatened several times to throw the next complainer in the water if they didn't zip it.

Okay, this is not what I had in mind when I suggested we have poker night. Yes, there are cards on that blanket but where is the enthusiasm, people?

Summer Break Day 17

Great wrap-up of cooking camp today. We had so much fun serving the parents. Great job, young chefs. The boys came to help eat up the yummy fixins and ended up cleaning the kitchen with me and Uncle Timmy. They hauled garbage bags and mopped and swept. Are you kidding me? They don't do that at home. 
Looking forward to having Corey home for the next 4 days. What a treat that will be. We haven't seen him much with all the hours he has been working so I am really excited to have him home and NO conference calls, either. Woohoo!
Day 17 Life Lesson: Presentation is everything.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Summer Break Day 16

Holy hotness, batman! 90 some degrees today - yikes. The boys played in the sprinkler with Heather, the super-sitter. She was as wet as them. Sorry Heather :-)
My favorite day of the week - Thursday! No golfing today because of the heat but dinner with 3 of my foursome was awesome. We missed you TW. It is too cramped in the bar, though, and if one more person would have bumped my chair fries were gonna fly. And if I moved my chair any closer to LB I would have been on her lap, for cryin' out loud.
We helped, and I use that term loosely, J and C pack up their moving truck and clean up their house before they headed off to Michigan. I realized that C is way louder than my three sons put together. And way funnier. Happy trails, friends.
Here's an idea, let's take pictures of every bad driver we meet on the street and post it online. I'm just sayin'.
Day 16 Life Lesson: WATCH OUT! for each other...