Sunday, July 31, 2011

We made it!

After 1100+ miles in two days, we made it to Treasure Island!  The kids did great on the trip, no whining or complaining from the backseat. I don't travel as well, as I don't like to sit for so long, and if I try to anything besides drive or look straight ahead in the passenger seat, I get really nauseous. Really nauseous, I can't even read too many billboards or I'm feeling it. There were a few complaints from me, but overall it was the best trip we've ever had with the kids.

Before we left the house, I made goodie bags for each kid with their name on it.  I got several little items, wrapped them in newspaper and put in their bags, along with some snacks like teddy bears and granola bars.  I wasn't sure how this would work, but it really entertained the kids.  About every 70 -100 miles the kids got to open a new gift. The gifts weren't anything spectacular and I didn't spend hardly any money. I put a pkg. of gum, chapstick, a small notebook for the kids to write/draw about vacation, a beach toy, a squinkie, a new pair of sunglasses, hand sanitizer, etc.  They really got a kick out of finding out what they would get next.  It also helped keep the car clean because the kids had a place to put all their stuff.

We stopped in Kentucky for Andy to take a final exam for one of his online classes.  Yeah, his professor wouldn't even consider letting him take it at a different time, it had to be Saturday at 12:00.  I was worried something weird would happen, either my laptop with 3G wouldn't work(which happens quite frequently), or we wouldn't be able to find free Wi-fi.   But it all worked out and he still has a perfect 4.0. Whew!

Eating subway while Andy takes his exam

We made it to Florida around lunch time today.  It was hot and steamy, about 98 degrees.  The traffic got crazy then, and by crazy I mean I was in the slow lane going 75-80 and getting passed by almost everyone.  It didn't take us long to make it to Treasure Island! Our hotel - a family owned place right on the beach.

While our room isn't fancy by any means, it is nice.  It is a two room suite with a kitchenette.  We have a double bed and twin bed in the bedroom, the couch in the living room pulls out to a double bed, and there is another sofa as well. It is roomy and clean, has a heated outdoor pool, and is just a short walk across the sand to the ocean!

Monday, July 25, 2011


What?!  That is usually the first word out of my mouth when my boys are alone for several minutes and then I go see what they are doing.  The next words usually out of my mouth I probably shouldn't repeat, so you can just use your imagination.

Drew has recently learned how to climb up our doorways, hallways, and anything else he can climb.  The first time I saw him doing this upstairs in the hallway I was a bit shocked, and he told me, "Well, I am a professional stuntman, Mom." What?!

I can understand the fun in climbing, and I'm pretty lenient about it, although I could do without all the dirty hand and footprints on our walls(which we made him clean up today). I also am not fond of Drew teasing his little brother by taking his toys and putting them on top of the door frames - he does know how to tease really well!

Today as Andy and I were making lunch, the boys were giggling in the other room, and then I heard Drew shout, "Alex is flying!"  OK, I had to go see about that one...

All I can say is Drew is one strong kid! He may look a little skinny, but he's solid muscle!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Exciting news

We have some exciting news to share with all of you, Alex is now potty trained!!! OK, so maybe some of you(most of you) don't really care too much about that, but if you're a parent with a little one in diapers, or a grandparent who has to change diapers, you can understand and appreciate our excitement.  We are DONE with diapers at our house.  DONE! Well, we'll still do diapers at bedtime for awhile, but probably not long.  He's picked this up quickly, without a struggle, almost overnight, and without much work from us. It couldn't have been any easier, maybe just a little sooner, but I guess they decide when they are ready.

I've been trying to talk him into using the potty for almost a year, but with no luck.  Oh, he knew what he needed to do, and he could do it, he just absolutely refused to do it, unless it was his idea.  So I've tried to be patient, sometimes without a lot of luck, but I think I did pretty well patiently waiting.  Finally last weekend we talked about it, talked about going to preschool, and told him tomorrow he'd wear the big boy undies.  If we went in the potty, he could get some new Cars 2 undies the next day. I think that sealed the deal for him.  No accidents for several days now!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


I've heard of Pontious Farm near White Heath several times over the past few years, but have never been there despite it only being 15 miles away.  But after reading this article, I decided I'd better get over there before it was too late. The owners are closing the farm after 40 years. It is a U-pick berry farm, and while it is not certified organic, they don't spray their crops either.  You can sample the berries right there at the farm as you pick them -they even encourage it! There is nothing better than that!

Unfortunately, their last season is not going to be their best season.  The blueberries are taking forever to ripen, and they are really hard to find.  But I did have 3 little helpers!

 I was also smart enough to not let the kids sample any berries until we were almost done picking, otherwise we would have had an empty bucket. Once I told Alex he could try a blueberry, he started eating every single berry he found, which really wasn't that many they were so hard to find or were out of his reach. He'd pretend to put it in the bucket, then pop it in his mouth.  I can't blame him, they were delicious!  

I made a blueberry lemon bundt cake this afternoon so I could try out my new cake platter.  I've been wanting a cake platter with a dome for as long as I can remember, and finally got this one for my birthday(Thanks Mom!).  I waited nearly a week to make another cake, as we have had a lot of cake recently celebrating 3 of our birthdays, but I just couldn't wait any longer. 

Monday, July 11, 2011

Trying to catch up

I have not uploaded any photos since the middle of May, but tonight I finally decided, a little reluctantly, to work on it.  I hate to get behind on things like this, because once I do get behind, its really hard to catch up, especially since I usually take a lot of pictures of the kids.  But I'm working on it - several hours so far this evening, and probably will require several more tomorrow. In case you don't have our gallery website, it is   

I will also be uploading pictures to Picasa, and I will be sending a link(I think) when I get that set up.  I originally started uploading our pictures to Flickr, and as soon as I figured that out, Andy told me to start using Picasa.  It should be easier/more convenient to use, as I can send pictures directly to Picasa from my phone.  I will probably put all our pictures at both places for now and eventually I will use only one of them.

We had the opportunity to spend last weekend with some of the Wettstein family in Silver Lake, WI. We stayed at a huge(I've never seen anything like it) and beautiful house with around 20 other family members, and had a great time.  The kids had a blast, and I think Andy enjoyed himself too!  If you can't tell he is really grinning while bouncing the kids on the trampoline.

Trying to catch a fish
House where we stayed

Thanks to Eric and Stacy Wettstein for inviting us to Silver Lake for the weekend! 

Friday, July 8, 2011


Alex is 3!

We celebrated his birthday last Saturday.  He requested a red train cake, although he plays with Cars way more than anything right now.

Three!  I still can't believe my little guy is three!

Concentrating really hard on opening presents!

It's Luigi! He really wanted a Luigi costume for his birthday.

And of course where there is a Luigi, there has to be a Mario! Its the Mario Bros!!

Thanks for all the birthday cards, money and gifts!  Alex had a wonderful birthday!!

Friday, July 1, 2011


Tomorrow my little guy turns 3! Three is such a big age - officially a preschooler! I still have a tendency to call him 'baby Alex', but when I do, he tells me, "I'm not a baby, I'm really big!" Tomorrow I'll no longer have a toddler - I know he's ready to grow up(catch up with his siblings), but I'm not sure I'm with him on this. I'd like to hold on to the baby/toddler stage for just a bit longer.

Here are just a few of my favorite pictures of Alex. I have so many favorites I couldn't put them all...