Friday, July 27, 2007


Dinner for four at Firehouse Subs - $25
Shopping trip to Target - $50 (less a return of $16)
Tickets to baseball game at new stadium - $24 (actually free to us because we had a connection)

Watching the man you love watch baseball with his son - priceless

During our baseball season this spring, C caught on. He knew the calls and sometimes called them before the umpire did. He was hooked. Watching him play T-ball this summer, I realized that he was one of the only boys on his team that played defense. He would get the ball and throw it home, or run to home plate to catch the ball before the runner got there. He is developing a love of his daddy's sport. Tonight, he was watching the game intensely, talking about it with his daddy. I ate it up.

And R had a good time, too. We went to the potty several times. Went to get a balloon. Tried to track down the mascot (I think he might be an illusion). We snacked, we danced, we watched people, we chatted with the trash guy.

It was a great ending to a fun, relaxing, kid-friendly week. I am determined to enjoy every minute until school starts and the craziness surrounds us again. Only three more weeks. If they fly by like this week did, it will be here before I unpack my Target sale items.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Sweet Summertime

Today felt like summer. Finally. We slept in. The boys swam and played outside. We had lunch al fresco. We played games, we played trains. We made treats. It was fun, unstructured and unscheduled. It was summer.

Tonight after the boys' bath, I was waiting for R to get out of the tub, holding his towel for him. He greeted me with Hello, what is your name? I told him mommy and asked about his. He said his name and then told me all about himself. He has a sister named Courtney (not a true statement), and brother named C (true) and another brother named Potty (not true). He also remembered another sister named Window (not true). With the exception of C, all the siblings are younger than R. There are 14 beds in his room and he gave me the tour of his room with the 14 beds. He then told me that in C's room, there are 15 beds. Apparently we are living in a much larger house than I have perceived. It is no wonder I needed a vacation. I have been taking care of 3 additional children under age 3 that I didn't even realize were here. I guess it's easy to lose a few in the large bedrooms with 14-15 beds.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

On the Road

I just realized that my last post was June 28th. Just slipped this in before I went an entire month without posting. My goal is to treat my readers to quality posts, rather than quantity posts. In reality, I would love to post more frequently - I just haven't been able to work it into my regular routine. Not that we have one of those in the summer, but anyway.

I love vacation! I always forget how wonderful it truly is until I am in the middle of it. We started by going to my sister's house in Illinois. She and her husband have a 20-month old daughter. She is the sweetest! I have fallen in love with her. She has the most beautiful red hair and big, bright blue eyes. She thought the boys were the best and especially took to C. The boys were like big brothers to her. They were very patient and loving to her. My sister's city has an amazing community pool. I was so envious. It had a baby pool area with slides and fountains, then a huge family pool with buckets and sprinklers and slides for the little ones connected to a huge pool with lanes. Then, walk around the corner and there is a huge lazy river with another pool and two water slides. We had such a great time. One time, I was going down the blue slide with R in a double tube and at the end, he totally fell off and went under water. I got him up quick and the lifguard was there within a second. R was fine and wanted to go again immediately. I love his willingness to try it again. The boys (and their parents) had a fantastic day at the pool. The next day we all headed to Michigan. We had rented a lakehouse with all my family - my parents, my brother and his family from Malibu, and my sister and her family. We were all there to celebrate my parents' 40th wedding anniversary.

Let me just say that my parents are amazing. They worked tirelessly raising three children and now are enjoying their retirement together. They raised children who are successful, but more importantly, are all children of God. Sometimes I see them holding hands. My mom will relax on the sofa with her feet in my dad's lap. My dad still gives my mom backrubs. They are best friends. I am so grateful for all they have done and given for all of us children. We are so blessed to have these parents! Happy anniversary, Mom and Dad - I hope you enjoyed the week as much as we did.

We stayed in the lakehouse and swam, canoed, fished, made a campfire, played games, cooked, walked and talked, talked talked. My brother's boys are beautiful. His oldest is R's age - all the boys were best buddies. Their youngest is just 5 months old and such a cuddle bug. I got to love on him a bunch! Our family is crazy - with 8 adults and 5 children 5 years and younger, there are always at least 4 conversations going on at once - it was never quiet. The boys had the time of their lives jumping off the dock and playing on the beach. They never tired of playing outside. They also loved fishing with their dad and grandpa. We created some special memories on this trip. I appreciate all my family sacrificed to make this trip happen. I love them so much and treasure the moments we have together.

We then headed to St Louis for a few days of family time before going home. We went to the zoo the first day. Let me tell you that the St Louis zoo is arguably one of the finest zoos in this country - we have been to many. We have been to this one several times. Unfortunately, we have learned that we all have a zoo quota - there is a limit as to how much zoo you can handle in one summer. After visiting the Memphis zoo in May (also a good one), and the Little Rock zoo in June, I think we were harder to impress. Oh look - the lesser kudu. Wow. There's an elephant - is it Asian or African? Although the hippos are always a hit - watching them underwater as they swim and of course, my boys want to spend most of their time in the reptile house. Once while we were standing at the River's Edge, some lady wondered aloud what animal that was in front of us. C in a somewhat bored voice, that's a capybara. Yes, we know. We've seen them all summer. We did enjoy it in the 96 degree heat and saw the animals in a quick 3 hours.

The next day we visited the Magic House. We had not decided if we were going there or the City Museum. Rumor had it that City Museum was the "It" attraction for children 3 and 5. But in the end, we realized how much cash we had spent thus far in gas (upwards of $3.39 a gallon) and decided that since the Magic House would cost less $$, we would opt for that. My boys loved it!!! We took a break for lunch and came back for more. I had read on Janelle and Michelle's blogs that their family enjoys this place (yes, I read and enjoy your blogs - just have a hard time commenting - my log in won't work and I haven't worked it out). Our family also gives it our stamp of approval. It was great to see C and R wanting to be together - waiting for each other, looking for each other - wanting to experience it all as a team. I realized just how much they love each other and depend on each other to be there. What will R do with C in kindergarten next year? He'll probably spend his mornings bringing tissue to his mommy...

All said, we had a wonderful trip. P and I celebrated our anniversary while in St Louis. 14 years. P picked up dinner for us that we ate in the hotel room after the boys fell asleep. We had a wonderful day with the boys at the museum and swimming in the hotel pool. We didn't need a fancy dinner out or a date. We've done that. This year, we celebrated with the people we love most - the people who know us the best and still love us.