Rally Sunday

We had Rally Sunday this past week.  Charlie started Sunday School.

There was NO separation anxiety at all. He just walked in the classroom and made himself at home!  When I picked him up he said “We went outside. And God made Everything!!”

When we picked up Maria she showed me a picture she drew of herself on the Wild Thing and could not remember the Bible story they read. (Which I especially found amusing later that afternoon, when she told me that she was a better listener than Charlie)

Here they are being cute before church. Both are wearing hand-me-downs from their cousins!
Ready for Rally Sunday!

2013 – First Day Of School

Here we go again!  More milestones – of the first day of school type!

Charlie had his first day of preschool today and Maria her first day of First Grade.  Both had great days. Both were tired tonight – Especially Charlie!  But his teachers said he just went with the flow and it wasn’t like he was the new kid at all.  Of course, it helps that they all know him as Maria’s little brother!

First Day of Preschool!

Maria declared the new girl in her class her new Best Friend in the car ride home from after school care.  Which is good, considering her Kindergarten BFF is at a different school this year.  And she came home with homework (1/2 page of numbers). She has also been asked to read 20 minutes a day. So we set up a little table in her room, where she can work without Charlie and I showed her how to set the timer to make sure she gets 20 minutes in.

First Day of School - 1st Grade!

All in all, based on the first day. I think it’s going to be a good year!
First Day of School!

More First Day Pictures

Labor Day Weekend

We’ve had a good weekend!

I took Friday off and ran errands and got my haircut… had some “down” time by myself.  It was a good way to start the weekend.

On Saturday the kids and I went to Rochester to visit my parents.  We also were able to get in a visit (and swimming) with my best friend from junior high who I haven’t seen since probably the early 90s!

Yesterday both kids got some special attention. Chad & I took Maria to Valleyfair and Charlie stayed home with Grandpa & Grandma all by himself. Both kids were very excited!

This was our 2nd visit to Valleyfair with Maria and I have to say it was very different!  As she had grown over 3″ since last summer (and over an inch since May!) and was now able to go on most of the big rides.  The Wild Thing and Monster being her favorites!  Her favorite from last year was not quite what she remembered although she tried to make it fun!  She also declared the Looping Starship (the upside down Viking ship) the most boring ride ever, even though Chad almost got pegged in the head with someone’s cell phone that came loose.

Today is laundry day… 🙂  and both kids are off to school tomorrow – Maria starting 1st grade and Charlie starting preschool! Both are excited!


Lifting weights at Grandma's

Summer Review

Here’s what you missed in July:

      • Our annual 4th of July picnic was small (just family) but fun!
      • Maria had a belated birthday celebration with her BFF – lunch at American Girl store and a sleepover!

American Girl Birthday Celebration

      • Maria took a hip hop dance class.
      • Charlie and Maria took swimming lessons.
      • Introduced Charlie to Playland at McDonald’s (LOVED IT!)


      • Maria spent several days with her cousins and went to Vacation Bible School with them.

VBS 2013

    • Charlie went to one of his cousin Drew’s baseball games.
    • Discovered Chutes & Ladders park.


    • Maria went to a week of day camp with her friend Gracey


  • Both kids had a week at backup daycare – Charlie loved it!

And August:

      • We spent a week at Luther Park.
      • Maria went to see Dispicable Me 2 with a friend
      • Signed Charlie up to start preschool and Sunday School in September (next week!) and toured both!
      • Maria went to a Lynx game with Chad.

Lynx fan!

    • We went to see Planes – Charlie’s first movie.
    • Chad golfed in a couple of golf tournaments
    • Checked out the Splash Pad at the YMCA and a newly “remodeled” park near home

Teeter totter

  • Celebrated our friend Ellis’ first birthday
  • Met Maria’s First Grade Teacher

Can’t believe it’s time for a new school year!

Luther Park 2013

We spent the first week of August at Luther Park.  It was a really great time. The only downer being that the pool wasn’t open much and when it was, it was chilly!

Other than that, both kids had a blast!  Lots of scootering, bike riding, soccer, GaGa, singing, dancing, and playing with friends and cousins!

Chad and I had a good time too!  Lots of relaxing and being outside!  Looking forward to going back next year!  Next year I’m going to take more pictures!
Pontoon Ride

Playing GaGa




Surprise! It’s July!

Did anyone see where June went? Wow that was fast. But as they say, time flies when you’re having fun. And mostly June was fun!

When I say mostly, that implies that parts of it weren’t. Those parts would be weekends #1 and #2 and the week between. Why do you ask? Well if you remember May, the last weekend Maria had a stomach bug. Which Charlie didn’t pick up until the following weekend. There was a lot of sheets changed and rugs washed that weekend. Which I’m fairly certain was why I got the bug that following Monday night. Then the weekend came again, and it was Maria’s turn again. Chad drank grape juice and remained safe!

We pulled it together and stayed healthy for a week. We had a fun barbecue at Karin’s while learning a good lesson about setting boundaries for a 3 year old boy.

And the following weekend we had a family reunion with Chad’s family and cousins. Good times! And the following weekend, we had Chad’s 20 year class reunion while his parents hung out with the kids.

In between all of that:

  • Maria graduated from Kindergarten
  • I cleaned up the landscaping and spread a LOT of mulch!
  • Both kids started swimming lessons
  • We’ve played a lot of Thomas the Train Uno and Spot It.
  • Charlie also spends considerable amount of time pushing a dump truck
  • Maria learned to ride her bike!
  • I upgraded to an iPhone5… which is probably the only reason there are pictures for me to post below…
  • Chad and I also worked. yeah, those jobs sure get in the way of summer.

So yeah, my things to do for June did not get done, except for the landscaping things…

A Few Pictures
Outside Uno
Outside Uno!

“Helping” with the Mulch
Mulch Riding!

4-wheeling with cousin Owen
Riding with Owen


Can I just tell you that it’s pretty amazing that my baby boy is 3?

Charlie turned 3 this past Monday. We started our celebrating on Saturday with a Jake & the Neverland Pirates party.  It was definitely fun!  Lots of presents, cake, family (although some were missing due to a stomach bug). Charlie got loads of presents. Many pirate themed.  Sunday, he asked “my birthday still?” when I told him why we still had the balloons ups.  And on his birthday, he was hesitant (tired) of the blueberry muffin I got him, but then dug in and hung out in his jammies for awhile with Maria. Then we checked out his new train set. Later we had friends (6) come over for playdate and lunch. Plus more cupcakes!  It was a great birthday!

This kid at 3 has sooo much imagination. He loves his treasure maps, and just sitting and playing with toys – cars, pirates, toy phones, blocks, puzzles.  It amazes me how much he focus.

He transitioned to a big boys bed 2 weeks ago. And it was amazingly seamless. He also did a week of potty camp at my work’s subsidized backup daycare.  He did ok, but was not that interested. We’ve decided to give him more time (and all of us a break) until he seems more interested/ready.  The “nuk” (pacifier) is mostly being limited to sleeping and bedtimes, although he has a cold right now, and he seems to be getting some molars, so there are definite needs for exceptions on that rule.

His vocabulary has exploded again. and his sentences are getting more clear every day. I think my brother was a bit shocked at the party when Charlie walked into the room and said “Uncle Mike, come and see my bedroom!”

So yeah, seriously love this kid.  He brings so much joy to all of us, especially his sister who calls him a stinker but at this point doesn’t even realize that he is her biggest fan and best friend.

Charlie the Pirate! ARgh!

More Presents!

Birthday Cake & Candles

More Birthday Pictures