Friday, July 29, 2011


We left the second school got out for the summer and headed to Indiana to visit Greg's sister Janelle's family there for the first time. 
We made a rest-stop in Wisconsin Dells for supper and a little play time on the way.  We found a (FREE) Pirate's Cove playground.  It was wonderful!

 We got to stay on Grandpa Dan & Grandma Kim's farm (they're Janelle's in-laws).  I think it was the highlight of our children's lives!  We needn't do Disney ever again...the farm will do. 

 Sophie and Rowan, her new best friend, and visa versa.  Evidently no one has really cared much for Rowan because he was cranky to a more-beloved cat.  Sophie didn't know about any of that though.  She was always outside looking for Rowan.  Even after a few days when we discovered her runny nose and extremely itchy/stinging eyes were likely due to cat allergies (we'd never been around cats so much in our lives!)
 Sophie, Owen & Cousin Logan, getting ready to set up for the parade that the other cousin, Jared, was marching in.
 There he is!

 We even spent some time at the carney.  We got an elephant ear (it was my birthday, after all).  Why have I never had an elephant ear before this?!  Amazing.
 After the cousin bath.  Jared was not included.
 We had multiple campfires at the farm.  So good!
 There's Rowan again.  Sophie was trying to coax him onto her lap.
 There you can see the amazing camper that Dan & Kim let our family stay in.  We had our own space...beds, bathroom, fridge.  It was quite wonderful, actually.
 Milking a real cow!  Grandpa Dan did a wonderful job of explaining and then showing our kids where milk comes from.

 They all gave it a go.  I just couldn't do it, myself.  Been there, done that, if you know what I mean.  It felt a little too personal. 
 Grandma Kim led us around to see the calves and other cows as well.  The kids wouldn't let this little guy suck their fingers. 
 But they let these gigantic ones lick their hands.  Go figure!

 We spent a day at a touristy Amish town.  Lots of fun seeing the sights...and the Amish.  Our kids loved seeing buggies on the highways as we drove (me too!).  And they loved pointing out Amish people, as if they were a rare animal sighting..."I see an Amish!"   We took a carriage ride to make a fun, touristy memory.

 And then we ate Hawaiian food for lunch.  Really.  We were too cheap for sit-down Amish food, so this was the other option.  Weird.  But really tasty.
 On our way back home, we brought Jared with us.  We stopped over night in Wisconsin Dells this time, and we toured around town a bit.  We all decided we need to come back and do a bunch of fun stuff next time.  This time we were just passing through.

We had such a good time to, in, and from Indiana!  The road trip was enjoyable, the kids did great, and it was fun to have Jared along on the way home.  Our visit with the Indiana family was awesomer than super-awesome.  We just really had the best time.  Like I said, who needs Disney?

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Memorial Day Weekend

We spent Memorial Day Weekend with my family.  The weather was a little iffy, so we spent some time at a nearby indoor waterpark. 

 The bad news is, upon returning again that evening, we got kicked out due to lightning (indoor/outdoor pools connect)...the good news is they let us come back the next day!  Two days of swimming for the price of one!
 This is Owen's birthday present...the coon-skin cap.
 We took a walk down to the lake to see if we could catch any critters.

 The kids tried and tried...

 ...but I think they only caught some weeds.

 Sophie, Aubrey, Owen, Jozie

 Sophie, Jozie, Owen, Aubrey + Adeline!  The newest addition to the family!!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Hello again

I've been told by more than one family member to get my act together, so I'm trying to catch up with the parts of our life I haven't been posting about.  Summer is busier than the school year, it seems!  How is that possible, you ask?  We went to Indiana the second school got out...literally.  We've been to Greg's family's for the 4th in addition to multiple other busy days.  Looking ahead...cousin camp, Germany and camping (fingers crossed!). 

This is from May.
Sophie's gymnastics program to finish off the year.

Warming up...

 Lining up...
 Her events...

 We were far away, so the flash didn't really help.  Sorry.
 The dismount...
 Floor routine...
 Receiving her medal...

There it is!  Notice the missing tooth...
 Some of her biggest fans...