Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Milwaukee Labor Day Weekend: Bookworm Gardens

We drove an hour(ish) north to Sheboygan to visit the Bookworm Gardens. It was worth the drive.

Alice was a little disappointed she didn't find Liz in the Magic School Bus.

The gardens were divided into several different sections. Around each section was a book cupboard with copies of the books that inspired that section. It was awesome. Lots of books were read and lots of fun was had exploring.

"He Came With the Couch" by David Slonim

"Hairy the Dirty Dog" by Gene Zion

"Horton Hatches the Egg" by Dr. Suess

"Playhouse for Monster" by Virginia Mueller

"The Three Little Pigs"


"Winnie the Pooh"

"Goldilocks and the Three Bears"

"Little House in the Big Woods" by Laura Ingalls Wilder

The scariest worm I've ever seen (not a book, just really freaky looking)

"Peter Rabbit" by Beatrix Potter

"Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs" by Judy Barrett

Monday, September 29, 2014

Milwaukee Labor Day Weekend: The Beach

Last year we used Alan's hotel points to have a weekend trip to Chicago and had a great time. He had enough points saved up to get us another weekend stay, so we picked Milwaukee to get out and explore. Growing up in Oregon, I still think it's a little weird to call anything but the ocean a "beach", but with the water, the sun, and the sand it was hard to remember it was just a really big lake. It was a beautiful morning, not to hot, nice breeze, and hardly anyone else there.

The water was cold and Clark hated it. We didn't do anything besides dip our toes and buckets into it.

This was Clark's first time experiencing sand. He thought it was pretty nifty, and didn't even try to eat it. Win win.

Alice loved the chance to dig and dig and roll around in the sand no one to tell her not to get so dirty.

Elsie loved all of the wide open space to just run and run.

Notice the dark cloud? It was supposed to be a rainy weekend in Milwaukee, but we were blessed with one great morning at the beach. Ten minutes after we packed up and left it starting pouring.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Friday, September 12, 2014

Ten Months

My little Clark boy is ten months old. He is EVERYWHERE. He crawls as fast as a speed demon and as soon as I turn around he's already across the house in some place he is not supposed to be. He is getting braver at trying to walk and loves to walk holding on to someones hands. Elsie especially loves to walk him all over the house. He will walk along with push toys and has just started holding on with only one hand when he walks. Still no teeth, and I don't think they are ever coming. No distinctive words yet, but I'm am pushing Mama on him pretty hard. Lots of dadadada, babababa, and every once in a while he throws in a little mamama just to tease me. Clark loves to chase his sisters around and is starting to really get into rough housing with Alice.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

First Day of School

My first baby is off to Kindergarten. I don't know how she ever got so old. I've gone back and forth all summer between ready for her to be out of the house and entertained by someone else to thinking I never want to send her to school and I just want to keep her home forever. Elsie was super excited and more than ready for it to start.

Alice is in a little once a week co-op preschool with a few other families. She was so happy to get to go to "school" just like Elsie today.

I took Elsie in for her first day and said goodbye at the door. I tried to be brave, but I think she could tell I was close to crying. She gave me a few extra hugs and told me "It's ok, Mom. I'll miss you, but I'll be home later. Give Alice another hug, kiss, and nose from me and tell her I'll miss her." I saved most of my tears for the car ride home and Alan's arms before he went to work. It was much harder than I thought it would be.

Both girls got their giant cookies after dinner for the first day of school. Good day, bad day, or something in between, at least there is a cookie at the end of the day.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Nine months

Clark is looking less babyish and more and more little boy every day. He is everywhere all the time. He is crawling everywhere, climbing everything, and cruising along all of the furniture. I feel like I'm sweeping and cleaning all the time, but the tops of his feet still end up black and dirty from all the activity. He chases his sisters around squealing while they run and shout "Clark!! No!!" He is still very much a Mama's boy, though Dad can be fun sometimes. Still no teeth. When he gets tired he sticks his tongue out. He enjoys self feeding himself puffs and yogurt bites and little bites from our food, but it is still mostly just practice as opposed to filling his belly. Clark certainly keeps us on our toes.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Warrior Dash 2014

We went, we conquered, and we got dirty.

Two years ago we ran the Warrior Dash and had a blast. We took a break last summer, and dove back in again this year. Our training included watching lots and lots of Buffy and Angel while eating ice cream almost every night. It was a pretty tough schedule, but stuck with it.

We left early that morning, dropped the kids off at a friends house, and made our way to the battlefield. After our nice warm up 5K hiking in from where we had to park the car, we checked in, got our numbers, dropped our gear, and got ready to go.

Trail running really isn't our thing. I don't know how people do it without turning an ankle every few steps. Despite that, we managed to keep up a good pace as we made our way through. There were 12 obstacles (and two small creeks) to get through, and we tried to conserve our energy for the last mile that had most of them. It seemed like this year the main focus of the obstacles was climbing. There were a few trenches to crawl through, but it felt like most of them was some form of wall with ladder rungs or ropes to climb. I experienced a few vertigo moments, but we successfully made it over everything. There was the pond to swim across, and the big mud hills to make it up and over. All of the photographers were near the end of the race catching the last few big obstacles.

The big, new attraction was call the Goliath. Almost at the finish line was a monster of a contraption to get over. First was a big cargo net climbing to the first platform. Then we had to walk across a slippery plank about 20 feet above a pool of water all the while being sprayed with muddy water.

A short ladder climb took us to the top, about 30 feet in the air. The only way to get down was to slide down into a pool of muddy water. That slide was fast! It was a good drop from the end of the slide to the water, and we hit the water HARD.

Around the corner was the last mud pit to crawl through to make it to the end. If I look like I'm in pain, it's because my tailbone was still feeling the effects of sliding off of the Goliath.

While the last two pictures were posed after we crossed the finish line, these next two were totally candid. I really love this guy, and I'm glad he's always on my team.

We made it through the finish line and have our medals to prove it.

We headed down to the Warrior Wash (another pond) to wash off as much as we could before grabbing our gear and heading back home to pick up the kids.