Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Dreaming of Summer

I can't talk about it.  I've forbid myself to discuss it.  No more complaining, whining or groaning.  Summer will come when it's ready.  And until then, I'm ignoring this crap weather.

Yes, all of my attention is toward the best season of the year.  And they say it's gonna be a hot one.  I love it!! 

But if there's one thing that having three kids has taught me, it's that thinking about summer in the middle of winter is a must.  Having a baby = hard.  Managing a toddler = hard.  Dealing with bored 6 and 8 year olds who then pick on the 3 year old = REALLY HARD.  So when those March/April/May summer camp deadlines roll around, you need to have a plan. 

Our plan this year is mostly out of town, with Steve joining us here and there.  We're gonna soak up tons of family time, as I'm planning to go back to work in the fall.  So we're calling it the last hurrah.  And what a hurrah it will be...

Home Base

The house I grew up in is our home base.  We get to spread out, the city kids get a taste of suburban life, and my parents spoil the boys silly.  Who could be happier?

In between swim and sports lessons -that I'm in the middle of signing them up for from afar, fingers crossed- we're gonna take full advantage of those special summer events.


They're dual.  It's the 4th of July for them too.  They even know almost all the words to the Star Spangled Banner, dangit.

He's Ready
So Am I

The infamous pool at my brother & sister-in-law's house.  It isn't summer without it.

Go Brew Crew

Living 20 minutes outside a B market city has it's perks.  Miller Stadium is 20 minutes away.  The sausage race during the 7th inning stretch is a bonus.

WI State Fair Cream Puffs
Milk Chug Contest

Other perks?  Living in the dairy state.  No shortage of beef and multiple servings of calcium everyday. 

We're Going Again!?!?

But the best perk is visiting the biggest small town in the state.  Green Bay, WI.  The mecca of football. 

It will be our third visit to the Packers Training Camp.  And this year, we're bringing our littlest.  He missed out on the first two trips since he was just too young.  But there's no holding that 3 year old Packer owner back (we bought him a share when he was a baby), so this year is his inaugural trip. 

So get ready, family.  If that thing I'm not thinking about ever goes away, we'll pack up our swimsuits and shorts and head on down!!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Spring Has Sprung

Someone recently asked me, "what's your next project?" and I drew a blank.  Then one day, all the snow and ice melted. 

I think we all know what the next project is.  But there's some waiting involved.  As in...let's see what wasn't destroyed when the fence went in.  I already know of a few casualties.

As for what comes back?  There are many possibilities.  Before our two renovations, I fell in love with gardening.

April 2009

We tried so many different things back here, but what stuck was following the shadows.  And embracing shade. 

May 2010

Grass in the sun, garden in the various shady border areas.  Heavy shade on the left, light shade on the right.  And don't plant anything that says "Full Sun" no matter how pretty it is.  I learned that the hard way...there were so many beautiful casualties...

May 2012

2011 is missing because that was the basement reno.  The garden collected piles of garbage from old pipes and rotted wood to bags of concrete and plastic tarps.  I couldn't believe it rebounded in 2012 like nothing ever happened. 

So we'll see what happens in 2014.  Because the beating from the renovation of 2013 was much, much worse...


Here's the state that it's in today.  Not pretty.  But the potential is there. 

I pulled all the rocks, bricks and pavers into the middle so the perennials can grow.  But until things come up, nothing's for sure.  Grass gone?  Adios firepit?  No blooms, texture only? 

It's all up for grabs.  It's just gotta be inexpensive and low maintenance.  Game on!

Friday, April 04, 2014

Start Spreadin' The News...

We're not moving and I'm not pregnant. 

Though we talk about each.  The latter discussion always ends abruptly with Steve saying, "You can have another baby, just not with me." I guess that's what happens when you get a V.  The former begins with dreaming of an address in the US and ends with the agony of leaving friends, his family and our new old house. 

So instead, we'll just scratch the itch and travel south.  With kids.  To New York City.

Lady Liberty

This lady's on the list, but we won't actually see this version of her.  She's at LaGuardia.  We're driving.  Yup, driving.  I heard you gasp.

Steve and I used to live in Manhattan.  It's where we worked, where we met and where we got married.  When we left for Toronto, we promised returning to the city would be an annual trip.  Then we had kids. 

We did make the trip with one of the three. 

18 mos

Who now looks like this.

8 years

Yeah, it's time. 

But...5 airline tickets is insane.  Then add accommodations.  Totally insane.  So we asked Google.  Apparently, it's 1.5 hrs less than our drive to WI.  Bingo!

I know it won't be the same.  I'm used to NYC getaways with the husband.  Filled with this...


But since Jake doesn't have a sportcoat, and Gramercy Tavern won't seat us without, we'll just have to find other things to keep us occupied...

Explore at Night

It's more than a month away, but we're already reading library books about the Big Apple.  So far, the requests are "visit the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty", "see dinosaurs" and "see monkeys, not gorillas." 

I think we'll hit everything on the wish list...and then some.  Excitement!