Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Saturday, June 30th, 2012
Today was the Looney Hooley at Teresa Berg’s.  We didn’t get there at the beginning so we didn’t play in the horse shoe tournament this year.  The boys sent straight to the kiddie pool to play.  It was great seeing all the Looney side of the family.  A group of us played Mexican Dominoes.  It was quite the game as no one seemed to be sure of the rules and we seemed to change them frequently throughout the game J  When the sun started going down someone got the fire going in the fire pit.  The smores supplies appeared and we had a yummy, sticky mess!!  It was a full moon so we decided it was finally dark enough for the fireworks at 10pm.  They were AMAZING and we taught the kids to scream, “Honk Honk” when they really liked them!!

I didn't have my camera out, but Alan took some pictures on a hand me down camera he got from Aunt Kathy. 

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Saucer Summer Tour Part 17

Tuesday, June 26th, 2012
Today we relaxed in the morning.  I took the van to the Mobile Lube Express to get a much needed oil change.  They had different qualities of oil so I chose to get the oil that will last for 5,000 miles to be sure I won’t need to change the oil again before we get back to Albuquerque.

Uncle Neil came home for lunch and we had left over pizza.  It’s even better the 2nd day J  After lunch we headed downtown to check out the new Children’s Museum.  It was AWESOME!!  The first area we played in was the PACKER area of course!!  They had a tailgate area set up, a kicking station, and a locker room where kids could wear child sized uniforms of their favorite Packer players!!  Eddie was in heaven and convinced he could get a real helmet here.  The other favorite play areas of the museum were the digestion station where you climbed up the tongue and traveled through the digestion system to a slide into the toilet!!  They also enjoyed dressing in real firemen clothes and boots to slide down the pole, drive the fire truck and play a cool video game where you put electronic fires out with a fake hose. 
Next door to the fire station was an old fashion diner where you could dress in a chef’s hat and apron and run the kitchen, cash register, and wait on the customers.  They had a juke box with an instructional video teaching the popular dances from the 1960’s.  As Aunt Kathy and I sat at the counter being customers and watching all the kids cook in the kitchen I couldn’t help but think of the supper club my parents ran when I was a kid.  It would be so awesome for my kids to see and experience.  This was as close as we could get to those memories.
Another popular play area was the water table that made a mote around a big ship!!  The kids could dress in yellow fishermen slickers. They had magnetic fish swimming in the mote at the back of the boat and little fishing poles with magnets on the end.  They had a BLAST!!  They also had a light house with a sand box at the base to play in. 
The boys really enjoyed operating cash registers today.  They had one in the diner as well as the shoe store play area and of course there was a grocery store to shop.  They had a hand crank conveyor belt at the grocery cash register.  We finished our play time in the Packer area while Aunt Kathy up graded our admission to a whole year grandparent pass!!  I’m sure she will use it and have a ball playing all year J
After the museum we head to hunt for new Packer Gear.  The first stop was a strike out, but we struck it big at the Packer Pro Shop at Lambeau Field!!  Aunt Kathy got the boys their own Green Bay Packer uniforms that included the helmet Eddie has been wanting and talking about since September when watching the games with Daddy.  She also got Mommy a new hot pink baseball cap and lanyard for her school keys.  Daddy will be getting surprises from her when we get home too.  Thank you soooooo much Aunt Kathy!!!
We headed back to the house and Uncle Neil built a fire in the Chimanea on the back deck.  The boys got in the hot tub and the grown ups chatted on the deck with snacks.  Then Uncle Neil cooked brats on the grill.  YUMMY!!
Wednesday, June 27th, 2012
Today we were up early and loading the van to share another childhood memory with the boys.  We were headed “Up North” to Boulder Lake!!  Laura and her family have a trailer on the lake just like her parents did when we were kids.   We got the cars and van unloaded and organized and it was time to check on the boat.  Aunt Kathy and I took it for a ride around the lake.  When we got back to the trailer  Lisa Brice (Laura’s cousin), her niece Thayla, and her kids; Colton, Weston, and Lexi had arrived and were getting unloaded. 
We made sure all the kids would have life jackets and loaded things up to take them down to the dock and load the boat.  We got everyone to the beach and hooked up the tube.  Aunt Kathy took, Thayla, Alan, and Eddie in the boat and I went on the tube to show the boys what “Tubing” would be like.  I even fell off to show them how to grab their life jackets and kick while the boat turned back to come get you.  Eddie couldn’t wait to be next and of course he wanted to go solo!!  We reviewed the hand signals; thumbs up to go faster, thumbs down to go slower and hand across your neck to STOP.  Eddie was so excited to have his turn.  He even gave us the thumbs up to go faster!! 
Next was Alan’s turn and he was egger to go solo as well!!  We reviewed the hand signals again and he was in the water with a big smile J  After his turn Thayla had a go and she was a pro!!  We decided to head back to the beach for a short break and some snacks.  Then we talked Joey, Jack and Coleton into joining the crew.  Eddie took another turn on the tube and even went out of the wake this time!!  Then it was time for Alan to have another turn.
I tried to get Joey to go, but just wanted to ride in the boat.  Aunt Kathy told him he could drive the boat if he did the tube.  He still wasn’t convinced.  I managed to get him to at least get on the tube for a picture.  From there we talked him into a SLOW ride.  It was too slow and he drank part of the lake.  When we pulled him in on the tube I just jumped on top of him before he could get off and we went full speed together.  He squealed with delight after we got going.  It was a BLAST!!  Jack was watching and taking it all in from the boat.  When Joey got off we talked him into riding with Cousin Amy too!!   Thayal had another turn and went super fast crossing in and out of the wake!! 
We decided to hang out at the beach for a while.  Time flew by and it was after 5pm the next time we checked.  Boulder lake only allows boats to go fast enough to create a wake from 10am -5pm so that meant no more tubing L  Eddie was super ticked off!!  He talked Aunt Kathy into letting him ride the tube without the wake back to the dock.  We got everything and everyone loaded back into the boat and headed back to the trailer.
The boys got dressed in dry clothes and Thayla took them out on the golf cart to hunt for sticks.  We got a fire going and Laura took me over to Echo Lake resort to see their old trailer.  When we got back Aunt Kathy and the boys had a fire going in the fire pit.  We made burgers on the grill and sat around the fire all night.  Joey crashed before the burgers were done and Alan crashed right after he had a burger.  Eddie outlasted all the kids and was up until the grown ups went to bed around 2am.  He slept on the top bunk and Aunt Kathy and I took the full size bed below.  Aunt Kathy managed to start a total giggle fest as she has a tendency to do.  All three of us were giggling for a long time before were fell asleep!!

Pictures from Green Bay are HERE.
Pictures from Boulder Lake are HERE.

Monday, July 02, 2012

Saucer Summer Tour Part 16

Sunday,  June 24th,  2012
Today we went to Aunt Denise and Uncle Dennis’s house.  We just relaxed catching up with Marisa before she headed to the lake with her friends.  I can’t believe she will be starting her Senior year of high school in the fall!!  The boys were excited to watch their movies in the theatre while the grown ups talked J
Tim, April, Ian and Simon came over for dinner.  We had an awesome spiral cut ham and all kinds of summer sides!!  The boys were super excited to try the new Capri Suns V.  They have a complete serving of vegetables in every pouch!!

Monday, June 25th, 2012
Today was a driving day.  We are headed to Green Bay and drove  455 miles.  We drove through Chicago and Milwaukee along the way.  It was 4:30pm when we pulled into the driveway at Aunt Kathy and Uncle Neil’s.  We visited a short time and headed straight for Bay Beach!!  We were in luck as it was kids’ day and the kids could ride unlimited FREE!!  Tickets at Bay Beach are only 25cents and each ride is 1-2 tickets to ride.  We started on the ferris wheel.  It has to be the FASTEST one I’ve ever been on!!  We went all the way around 24 times.  After the ferris wheel we did the train ride.  Then Alan and Eddie stayed with Mommy and did the super fast spinning swings.  Joey and Jack went to do some calmer rides with Aunt Kathy.  We did a bunch more rides and ordered pizza from Gallagher’s to be delivered.  The boys were up SUPER late!!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Saucer Summer Tour Part 15

Friday, June 22nd, 2012
Today Uncle Tim took us to the neighborhood park and had the boys help him build a trebuchet (catapult).  First they tried to lift the 25lb dumb bell.  Then they used the lever part of the trebuchet to lift the 25kb dumb bell to see how much easier the lever made the job.  Then they launched tennis balls and water balloons to see the difference in distance they would go based on the items’ weight.  Finally we used our body weight to increase the force on the lever to see how far the items would go.   It was a BLAST!!!

After Uncle Tim and the boys dismantled the trebuchet we headed back to the house for lunch.  After lunch we opened presents from Uncle Tim and Aunt April.  We played with our new toys!!  Then Uncle Tim had to go to work for a couple hours.  Simon took a nap and the older boys played hard J  When Tim got home he made us super tender chicken to make fajitas.  We ate quickly as Aunt April’s mom got 6 free passes to the opening showing of Brave!!  Ian couldn’t decide if he wanted to go to the movie.  He decided to stay home and play.  Joey found out and decided to stay home with cousin Ian.  So Mommy, Aunt April, Alan and Eddie went to see BRAVE!!
 When we were taking the exit to hwy23 it was way backed up so we off roaded to take the next exit down.  We got to the theatre with time to spare J  They delayed the show about 10min for those people stuck in the traffic on hwy 23.  The showing was for employees of Wells Fargo Banking and their families.  Thank you Mrs. Zeoli for sharing them with us!!!  The movie is AWESOME and will be part of our family collection as soon as it comes out on DVD.  I think the soundtrack will be added to itunes soon as well.

Saturday, June 23rd, 2010
Today we had French toast for breakfast.   Then we played more with Ian and Simon!!  We had leftovers for lunch and played outside.  When Simon took his nap Uncle Tim got out the new sprinkler.  We played in that for a while.  Then it turned into a water WAR!!  We took baths/showers when we came inside.  Then we played some more J  When Simon woke up we had a snack while Uncle Tim showed us how to butterfly and brine a chicken.  We had the chicken and roasted red potatoes and zucchini for dinner.  Then we walked to the park to play. Uncle Tim showed Mommy some tricks on the big camera.  Then Mommy and Aunt April went to the store to get ice cream for night night snack.  It was yummy!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Saucer Summer Tour Part 14

Thursday, June 21st, 2012
Today we got up bright and early to a wonderful breakfast of pancakes, sausage, and eggs!!  Thanks Deanna!!  We were on the road by 8:30am headed to Ann Arbor, MI to visit Uncle Tim and Aunt April.  We had extra time to stop and smell the roses so to speak.  We wanted to get there a little after 5pm when they would be getting home from work.  There was a HUGE Ikea just north of Cincinnati.  They have 1hr of free childcare to shop!!!  One of many reasons to LOVE Ikea J  I found some fun stuff and picked the kids up after exactly 1hr.  We went out to the van to check in with Daddy.  Then we all went back in to shop together for an hour.  All I can say is it’s a good thing there isn’t an Ikea near by and that we don’t have much space in the van J

We divided a bag of Swedish Fish for lunch and got back on the road.  After about an hour of driving we stopped at Wendy’s for a real lunch.  The boys even got to get Frostys for dessert!! 

As we were getting closer to Ann Arbor I noticed we had 30min -1hr to spare.  We drove past a sign for a candle outlet so we took the exit at Dundee, MI.  The downtown has lots of unique shops that would be super fun without little hands.  We spent 30min in Swan Creek Candle Co. and I’m sure they were very happy to see us leave.  I bought some fun stuff including supply to pour your own candles in the empty jars from used up candles.  The lady checking us out asked if she could put matches in the bag for me.  I said that probably wouldn’t be a good idea, but thanks.  We were on our way with 30min of driving left.  When we got on I 94 I told the boys to put on shoes as we were only 15 min away.  They asked if that was a long time or not.  I said it was short and Joey pipes up, “Mom why can’t you just drive in super fast speed?”  Our total miles for the day 364 miles.  Total miles for the trip so far 3,916!!  I better get the oil changed while in Ann Arbor.

We got to meet Simon for the first time and warmed up to us very quickly.  He is 110% boy and fearless.  I think I will catch up on my missing work out tossing him in the air.  He likes to tell Aunt Amy the following phrases:  more, more; again, again; higher, higher!!  Ian and Alan hit it off and were chatting away over pizza as well.   

Pictures from our Michigan Travels are HERE.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Saucer Summer Tour Part 13

Tuesday, June 19th, 2012
Today we drove  165  miles to the Mills family’s house in Frankfort, KY.  We took our time in the morning as it wasn’t far to their house and they had morning activities until 12:30pm.  We would have gotten there by 1pm according to the GPS.  Unfortunately, we had a meltdown, pit stop shopping fiasco, and traffic parked on the interstate for 20min.  We  arrived around 2:30pm for a LATE lunch.  The boys took right to playing and almost didn’t even care about having lunch!!

After lunch they went back to playing toy guns and war while Deanna and I got caught up with each other.  Steve grilled burgers, hot dogs, and brats for dinner.  Then we took a tour of the garden out back and Daniel built a camp fire to toast marshmellows.  There were TONS of fireflies for the boys to chase in the yard as well!!

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

Today we caught up on some very needed sleep!!  I got up around 9:30am and Deanna had banana cake and chocolate donuts out on the table waiting for us J
We just relaxed and played until it was time to pick Michael up from Aerospace Camp at noon.  After we picked Michael up we took the short tour of downtown.  We got to see the old capitol building as well as the newer capitol building. 

Daniel asked to go to Tai Smile for lunch.  The boys explored Tai food.  Alan was happy when I told him he could get plain chicken and rice.  Eddie, on the other hand, was very upset and difficult about ordering.  He simply did NOT want to share food.  I told him we were going to order 2 different things and share with Eddie, Joey, and Mommy.  Deanna didn’t skip a beat as she stood up and took Eddie by the hand to have a talk outside while the rest of us finished ordering.  We had Cashew Chicken and Egg Noodle Bowl.  It was YUMMY!!  The best thing about Tai Smile is you choose the level of spiciness with the number of stars you want so we could just get 1 star and still feel our tongues J

After lunch we took the tour of Rebecca Ruth Candy Factory.  This is were Bourbon Balls were invented by Ruth Hanly Booe (1891-1973).  Her story is amazing as she was widowed at a very young age with a very young son named John.  She raised him herself and managed to own her own business in a time that was unheard of.  They opened the factory in 1919 a year BEFORE women could vote!!   The factory burned down and she was unable to borrow the $50 she needed to rebuild and replace equipment from the bank.  She got the money from the maid at the local hotel and paid her back in 2 months with interest!!  Not only was she a successful business woman, but a successful single mom.  John even made Eagle Scout!!  We got some yummy treats to enjoy on the rest of our trip J

After the tour we headed back to the house to relax and play some more.  Deanna made Chicken Parmesan for dinner and Daniel taught me how to play chess as part of his chess merit badge for Boy Scouts. 
After dinner Deanna called a family friend and took us to see some real winning race horses!!  First we saw the mama horses and the 3 week old colts.  Then Miss Kim and her crew pulled up to introduce us to Brass Hat winner of several state races over 2 million dollars.  He currently holds one of the track records at the Churchill Downs race track and LOVES to eat peppermints!!  Miss Kim let the boys feed him quite a few mints J
Then she took us to meet their FFA pig.  The boys were more excited to jump in the hay with her daughter and friend.  When we got back the boys went through the shower quick and played.  Steve gave me some more pointers on chess and we played a game before it was time for bed.  The boys were begging to stay longer J

Pictures are here.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Saucer Summer Tour Part 12

Monday, June 18th, 2012

Today we had to say goodbye to the Tuckers L  We got on the road around 8:15am this morning headed to the Tennessee/Kentucky boarder.  We stopped at Sikes & Kohn outlet store between Troy and Montgomery.  Mommy got some new shoes!!  Then we hit Mulberry street in Montgomery in search of Mommy’s favorite coffee beans only to discover the shop isn’t there any more L  Most of the other shops are closed on Mondays so we headed to Prattville.  It was just after 1pm so we decided to have lunch at Chick fil A.  It was PACKED and ended up taking us an entire hour to get lunch!!  We hit Wal Mart in search of Alabama T-shirts for the boys, but they didn’t have any L  We got some snacks and new movies.  Then we drove past our old house and Madison’s old house.  After that we decided to check Target for the Alabama T-shirts on our way out of town.  No luck there either.  The gas at Raceway was only $3.04 so we topped off the tank and got back on the road.  Total time in Prattville, AL 2hr 15min and I felt homesick as that was one of my favorite places to live.

We decided to stop at the Alabaster, AL exit to check that Wal Mart for the shirts and they only had them in the Men’s department.  Alan really wanted shirt so we got a small incase we couldn’t find another one.  There as an Old Navy in the strip mall so we checked there and BINGO they had some in the Boy’s department on clearance!!  Eddie threw a fit because he didn’t want a red shirt.  I tried to explain that was the team color and that was the only choice.  He wanted an Alabama shirt, but he wanted it to be ORANGE!!  He still doesn’t understand the rivals of Alabama wear orange.  He threw a big temper tantrum  right in the store like he was 2yrs old.  I grabbed the shirts and paid as quickly as possible.  Then we went back to Wal Mart to return the other shirt and use the bathroom before we got  back on the road.  One more stop for the day just south of Huntsville for dinner.  We drove 517 miles and checked into the Hampton Inn with Daddy’s points around 10pm.