Friday, November 13, 2015

September through November catch up:)

 I'm just a "tad" behind on blog posting -- so I'm not even going to try and get these in order.  Joshua pitching in one of the fall ball games.

We watched the "super moon" from the ball field that night!

Tyler played another year of Upward soccer.  He really improved this year -- it was fun to watch!

The soccer game cheering squad.

One Thursday/Friday in September we took advantage of no school and made a quick trip to Branson.  The main event was seeing the show "Jonah" -- it was pretty impressive! It really made the Bible story we've heard for years come to life.

More Branson 

The real Branson story though . . . was this.  Bryan  had gotten some kind of a bite before we left KC, but after we got to Branson, and the "bite" started spreading, we realized it was NOT good.  He went to Urgent Care, and the dr said it was from a brown recluse spider.  After a good dose of antibiodics, he was fine.  (The sharpie line was the "it better not go beyond this point" mark.)

It was quite the exciting fall for Royals fans!  If you happen to remember, I got barfed on at a Royals game earlier this summer -- and consequently got 5 comp tickets for pretty good tickets.

They were only good Sunday - Thursday, so I just picked a Thursday game in September, and as it turned out, it ended up being the game where they clinched the Central Division title.

It was super exciting -- I guess it was work getting puked on.  Well . . .that's still up for debate I suppose.

All tuckered out from the Royals game:)

And so began our saga of "how can we watch the Royals play off games that are only on cable????"  So -- this was at Culvers:)

Yep, DQ had a TV with cable too!  We were SOOO glad when they finally got to the WORLD SERIES and the games were on free tv!

So, we elected not to attend the celebratory parade or rally . . . instead, we had a watch party with some neighborhood friends.  Great view from the our vantage point!

Great fun spending time together!

Using jump ropes as four square boundaries:)

Lunch with Mommy and Tyler.

Bryan's parents visited for a week in October -- and for whatever reason, Sorry was the game to play this visit! Who knew the game could be so viscious!

Grandpa listening to Tyler practice his AWANA verses . . .

Kayla got to open her birthday gift from G/G Nelson a little early!

Yet another game of Sorry . . .

I went with Kayla on her field trip to the zoo.  It was really, really chilly.

Snuggling together during lunch just to keep warm!

The carving of the pumpkins!!!  

The kids were troopers with digging out the "guts" of the pumpkins!

Yep, that would be a Drimmel tool with safety glasses!

Joshua -- a "whac-a-me", Kaya - ice cream cone with sprinkles, Tyler - Angry Bird

Joshua got lots of comments on his costume -- he even scored extra candy at one house because they liked it so much!

Examining the loot:)

We had a family birthday gathering for Kayla a little early -- how is she already 9 years old????

There are always lots of helpers nearby to help out!

 Our budding musicians -- I'm thinking Tyler was trying to get his time in before leaving for school!

Joshua continues to press on with cello.  Since he has done piano for quite a while, he's struggled with boredom, but we're hoping things will pick up soon!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

First day of school! (and finishing up the summer bucket list!)

2015-2016 First day of school!
(Funny side note -- it was JUST ABOUT to rain as we were eating breakfast.  So, I had the kids go grab their backpacks, run outside to take pictures, and then come back to finish up our morning routine before leaving for school!)

Tyler -- 1st grade 
(just grateful that our first day of school pictures for him 
didn't involved any face plants like last year did!)

Kayla -- 3rd grade

Joshua - 5th grade
(Last year of him in elementary school.  That just blows my mind.)

Just so happens that today is also our anniversary!  God has been so good to me -- can't imagine being on this journey without you Bryan!

And here we are 14 years later -- still working with a bunch of crazy musicians!!!!

And a couple of things we did this past week to end summer with a bang!  My sister and her kids came to KC to go to the zoo with us.  It was really, really warm, and so we especially enjoyed the polar bears and penguins (translation -- the indoor, air-conditioned exhibits!!!!)

Who are these monkeys????

More time at pool!  Tyler was showing his ninja moves using pool noodles:)

 This is the "normal" after lunch routine . . . finish lunch, go grab a popsicle from the freezer in the garage and hang out in inner tubes while you eat in! 

Trip to the skating rink.  Let's just say not all parties involved loved this experience. I wasn't sure whether Tyler was going to make it or not:)  But, we crossed it off our list, right????  Mission accomplished.

Royals game -- we LOVE going to the K!

I didn't even get barfed on this time -- score!

Not exactly a "fun" thing . . . I decided I was DONE with the low hanging branches on a certain tree... you shouldn't feel like you're doing the limbo when you're mowing, know what I mean?  So after going crazy with the pruners, I  realized I had A LOT of branches that needed to be dealt with.  Because Bryan wasn't available due to schedule stuff and the branches HAD to be hauled off on Saturday, the kids and I got creative with hauling them off:)  (I didn't take a picture, but the back of the Durango was stuffed too!)  Note to self . . .next time plan ahead before whacking off a bunch of branches!

Friday, August 14, 2015

Summer Trip to WI/MI/IN

Since the kids start school next week, I figured I should get caught up on summer blog stuff!
On our way to Wisconsin/Michigan/Indiana for our summer vacation!!!! 

Lots of fun family time -- we really enjoyed playing Blokus together! Great for all ages!

The kids continue to get better and better at ping pong -- if I don't really play well, I get beat now!

Speaking of games, Bryan's brother had this game called "Kubb" -- kind of like horse shoes only with wooden blocks.  Fun lawn game for everyone to join!

Our ritual trip to Culvers . . . I think they were all watching a video that Bryan had just taken beat-boxing with a straw:)

Fun with cousins!

Tyler and Grandma playing a mean game of Chinese checkers!

Also a WI tradition -- we always go see a matinee together . .. this year's selection was Minions.  It was hilarious!  And, since we went on a Tuesday, we managed to get free popcorn . . SCORE!

Right before we left, we found out from family that one of the water/amusement parks in Wisconsin Dells (Mt. Olympus) was offering $9 tickets.  So, we couldn't refuse a good deal like that, and made a day of going there and back.  Didn't get many pics of the water slide park since I didn't want to get my phone wet:)  Since Tyler just hit 48", that is a MAGICAL number and we got to ride lots of slides together as a family.  It was fairly crowded, but manageable!

Getting ready to ride go carts together -- the first time our family had done that.

I think Kayla was a little apprehensive . . . what do you think????

So probably the most fun of the day -- Tyler rode his first "real" roller coaster together, and we got to ride as a family!  Even though it was a wooden coaster, it wasn't too "jerky" -- it was a good first ride for him!

Tyler and Daddy coming back to the platform -- whew!  We made it!

 I celebrated my birthday while we were there!

Pictures from a nearby park!

Game of kick ball -- Grandma and Grandpa were even brave enough to join in!

After after we left WI, we drove around Chicago and visited some sand dunes in Michigan.  The kids had never seen anything like this and it was a really fun day together!

We're all smiling . . .we hadn't climbed that big hill behind us yet:)

This pic doesn't do this justice, but it is really hard to climb uphill in pure sand -- you just keep sliding down the hill!

So -- this picture was NOT taken at my finest moment:)  Kayla (bright orange shirt to the right) started laughing that she had hidden/lost her flip flops in the sand as she was climbing up.  When I went to help her retrieve them, we couldn't find them anywhere.  We dug and dug and dug.  The sand had just engulfed the crazy things.  I was a tad bid frustrated as it was really going to make things interesting if she couldn't find them.  After MUCH searching, I found one and Joshua found the other, but we didn't laugh anymore about losing flip flops!

Half way up!

Made it -- and everyone had their flip flops!

  You can't see it in the picture, but in between the two trees, you could faintly see a picture of Chicago's skyline -- it was pretty cool!

We spent several hours exploring -- it would was incredible how there would be sand one moment, and then forest the next!  The shade was always a nice addition in between the hot sand spots!

By this point, we were pretty hot and exhausted, so we walked along Lake Michigan -- but only to get our feet wet . .. 

 . . . or maybe just up to our knees . . .

 . . . or maybe just get completely drenched!  The kids had never been in a large body of water before with waves that kept coming on the beach -- it was really run to see their enjoyment!

Doesn't everyone do backbends on the beach???

The next day we went to my brother and sister in law's house in IN -- it was super fun to see their new place and hang with them for a night!

We grabbed a bit to eat  . . . who are these crazy kids???  The portion sizes were HUGE  . . .

 . . .we decided a walk was in order!  It was really fun to walk through a small town like that -- so different from where we live, but so refreshing!  Joshua and his cousins . . .

Kayla and the girl cousins . . .

We had a great week away, came home exhausted, but definitely worth it!