Friday, September 28, 2012


Fall is here and I am in Heaven. I got the first taste of cool weather several weeks ago, and went all haywire on dreaming fall dreams. Nick commented that I was all to eager to kiss summer goodbye, and while it made me feel slightly guilty for a second, I was indeed not upset to see it go. You see, this summer was one of the roughest of my life. It had nothing to do with my kids, our schedule, or activities. Those were all great. It had everything to do with the blasted heat that just about wiped us out. And when you have no central air in your early 1900's home, and you are plagued with severe pregnancy nausea...let's just say the two didn't mix very well. The hotter it was, the sicker I was, and it really made for a miserable summer.

With the cooler temps I'm able to enjoy the outdoors with my kids in the way that I longed for all summer. We've enjoyed countless walks, bike rides, park visits, and afternoons in the backyard. And instead of feeling like I'm going to tip over and die, I feel renewed, refreshed, alive.

Knock on wood, I'm slowly turning the corner on the whole nausea thing. It's still hanging on by a thread, but I can feel that we're about to part ways in just a short matter of time. And all I have to say to that is Praise the Lord! because it's been rough. Nick and I agree that this has been my worst bout yet. I don't know if I was truly that much sicker this time around, or if the added energy of taking care of two children just had me spent. But in the grand scheme of life, its a minor sacrifice for the reward I get in the end.


While many things have been neglected lately, photo taking is one I have missed the most. I can deal with the dishes piled up and the dust bunnies floating around, but I am just plain sad when I go to write a post, only to discover that I have a mere handful of photos to choose from. Shameful.

Even with slim pickings, here's a peek at us as of late.

Last weekend we had family photos taken by my talented and dear friend Jen. I've only seen this one image so far, and it has me anxiously awaiting the others.

Nugget has aged out of our local ECFE programs, but only just in time for Doodey and I to start going together! He is loving it, and is such a little stud with his "ba pa" (backpack) on.
The kids were pretty thrilled when one of the ECFE teachers delivered this to our house:

It's one of their advertising tactics, and it obviously turns some heads. We were graced with her presence for a week, and the kids befriended her everyday.
We've had two unsuccessful years with our sauerkraut making skills. We're hoping this is our year. So far, it's looking good.
We helped our small town celebrate it's annual Czech harvest festival by attending the Parade of Farm Pride (no joke), among other activities. For a boy who loves tractors and all things machine, Dude was lovin it.

Sister's been whooping it up at the grocery store...
And she's also digging her new dance class.
And I'm just gonna say it again....I'm so glad it's fall.
Hope you have an awesome weekend, and get outside to do something fun!

Monday, September 17, 2012


Well, we did it. She did it. Our girl has officially begun preschool, and I'm happy to report that no tears were shed, by Nugget or Mama. Truthfully, my girl has been ready for this for a long time. I didn't cry because I knew she was ready. Because I knew this would be good for her. That time apart was going to be good for both of us.

The first day, we went together. We learned the ropes, met new friends, and shared in fun.

The next time, she went all by her brave self. But not without making me about loose my mind trying to capture a cute first day of school shot, which nearly made us the last to arrive at school.

Dude and I enjoyed the morning together, and we even snuck to the bakery, just the two of us. I was reminded just how much one can get done with only one child in tow...and knocked my own socks off. However, we missed our Nugget girl and were happy to pick her up a short two hours later. She had a great first day and was excited to tell us all about it!

Her teachers are awesome and continually impress me by posting daily updates and photos to the class web page. It's super helpful that I already know what her day entails, so that (1) I can help get her excited for the school day, or (2) I can steer my questions about her day in the right direction to pry the most information out of her :)

Pics from her teacher: the insider's look to her day:

We've got a week under our belt, with lots of excitement and enthusiasm. I hope it continues, because to love learning is just plain awesome. It's also awesome to watch your child learn and grow and thrive. I'm so proud of my Nugget girl.

Sunday, September 16, 2012


It's still hard to believe that my baby girl is 4. She has slowly come to terms with it as well over the past few weeks, and no longer questions why she has to be four and not three. She's wearing it with pride, and has even given us little glimpses into the stuff big four year olds can do, like go to preschool without shedding a single tear, and walking into her new dance class (with all new friends and a new instructor), telling me to stay behind, and introducing herself to the group. You think one might be a little weepy at this, but truthfully I'm not. I've been waiting a long time for my girl to spread her wings, and it makes my heart happy to see her doing so.

So how did we celebrate her special day? Have a look-see.

She really wanted chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast, but we were missing a few ingredients so she settled for french toast. I redeemed myself with a candle and a Happy Birthday solo.

Next she chose to go get her toes painted fancy, then meet Daddy for lunch at her favorite, Patty's Place.

She was so tickled with my solo from that morning, so at lunch Daddy and I did a duet.

Someone was happy to have a treat. Sorry about the half chewed food shot.
We balanced out the busy day with a cozy stay home movie night. And yes, pants were optional ;)

Daddy surprised her with a small gift she's been asking for all summer...a yo yo!

The next morning was her much anticipated party day! She chose a mermaid theme this year, which has been one of her loves for a long time. I wish I would have been feeling better to make more cutesy decorations, but what we had was enough to please her.
In lots of pictures and little words, here was her party:

And the birthday girl herself.

Just look at that sass.

Now, I'm no Betty Crocker, but when my girl spied this mermaid cake in one of our birthday books, she fell in love, hard. I knew the cupcakes I was planning wouldn't suffice, so I went for it. I learned a thing or two about cake making in the process (like freeze your cake before you have to cut it in a bunch of pieces!), and in the end it was far from perfect. Like really, the tail? I know it's up entirely too high on her skinny little mid section, but it was either that or it wouldn't fit! But the great thing about four year olds is that they don't care! Hopefully the only thing she'll remember is that I loved her enough to make her this ridiculous mermaid cake.

So there you have it. We had a party, and it was awesome.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012


A few weekends ago, some friends invited us up to their family cabin. Well, they actually invited FOUR families up to the cabin, for a grand total of 10 adults and 10 children. Remember this group? We did this get together last summer too, but at a different family's cabin. How generous of all these friends of ours to extend their second homes to us. Cabins are wildly fun in the summer, but without one of our own, we're happy to live up the experience through these short weekend trips.

 Back L to R: Abby, Nugget, Olivia, Alex, Mitchell
(The Original Crew, the ones that brought us all together.)
Front L to R: Norah, Doodey, Henry, Aiden, Lucas
(The Junior Crew)
Big kids are standing behind their little sib.
I have to be honest and say that I came thisclose to bailing on the whole weekend. We had a good excuse, Nick's grandma planned a spur of the moment trip to come visit us, and was arriving while we would be gone. I was (and still am) feeling plagued with the woes of morning sickness, and I didn't really want to be miserable and throwing up around a group of our friends who didn't know yet that I was expecting. But alas, I pulled through, we enjoyed the weekend, and I made it all the way to the car ride home before having to throw up.
I did however, fall asleep on the couch one night at 9pm, but a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do.

We enjoyed all kinds of summer fun, like eating s'mores, playing with friends, canoeing, fishing, shopping, eating, bonfires, and catching turtles.

Unfortunately, my kids get a little wonky on their sleep when they are away from home, which leads to this sort of fun:

But we try to grin and bear it the best we can.

It was a short trip, but totally worth it. We'll see if we're lucky enough to be included again next year, as we'll be the first ones to have baby 3. We may outwear our welcome ;)

Anywho, thanks Clark family for having us, we sure appreciated it!