Tag Archives: Patrick

The Shannons came to visit… last month

The Shannons came to visit us over Labor Day weekend. It was a weekend full of hanging out watching the kids play, late night board games and trip to the MN Zoo.

These are some photos from that weekend. It took a long time to get these posted because unlike after a weekend with my family, no one called, email or texted me telling me they couldn’t wait to see photos. I appreciate the excitement from my family but I also appreciate the Shannons letting me get to the photos in my own time! School started the day after the Shannons left so since they left things have been crazy around here. Have you noticed the drastic decrease in posts on the blog? Yes? That is because the level of crazy in our house directly correlates to the lack of posts on the blog.

Back to it. Here are some photos of the weekend. I didn’t take as many photos as I should have while everyone was hanging around the house because I was too busy hanging around the house with them. At the zoo however, I got some fun shots.

Zach later showed all the big boys up by scaling to the top of the web without any hesitation. The kid is a monkey!

I think Patrick and Steve have a lot in common. They are good buds.

We have been to the Zoo almost a dozen times since we bought our family membership but we have never actually done the Butterfly exhibit. It was really fun. We will definitely hit it again next time we go.

The kids had a lot of fun trying to track down all the different species of butterflies

Starred Photos36

 

The fish were another BIG hit.

The baby monkeys were in rare form and the kids got a kick out of seeing them wrestle “Just like we do!”

 

Here are my favorites from the day.

Patrick was my buddy for the day. We both love to take photos.

 

And then when we tried to get a rare photo of all five cousins together Jon photo bombed the photo and what was a cute photo became an awesome and memorable moment. Meet Uncle Jon the Big Scary Spider!

 

For the record cranky Elise is mad because she was sitting directly behind Michael and I had Tim move her to the other side of Michael so she could be seen in the shot. Girls… they are awesome.

She got over it pretty quick when we asked her what a baby bird in a nest looks like.

Starred Photos37

More photos here

 

 

Sunday Funday

Sunday was Rally Day at church, my Mom and Grandma were in town, Beth came over for a bit and we spent $24 on two ropes and then tied a few knots.

We have never officially become members of the church we have been going to for the past year. Rally Day for our church is the last week of summer time services and the kick off to Sunday school. I made it a point that we would be there for Rally Day so we could get the kids involved and sign them up for Sunday School. It was a great service and afterward they had face painting, cotton candy and bouncy houses for the kids. Needless to say, it was a fun morning and I appreciate that my Mom and Grandma graciously told us to go even though they were in town and we should have been hanging out with them.

Usually our weekends are packed with to-do lists and errands. This weekend still had a few to-dos to get done like taking down the pool and the usual around the house weekend chores, but the chore load was lighter and the pool didn’t take long to put away so there was time left over to play!

I stupidly didn’t take any photos when we went out to eat or showed off our renovated kitchen and basement to my Mom and Grandma because I was just having too much fun visiting with them and laughing at Elise with them. Elise really wants to be a cowgirl right now and she will sacrifice her toes in order to dress like one. Two Christmases ago my Grandma bought the kids cowboy boots. Elise’s are a size 9. We just bought her new tennis shoes for school and they are a size 13. In her efforts to be a cowgirl Elise shoves her feet into her size 9 cowboy boots and says they fit fine “if I curl my toes!” Uffda. We all giggled along with her as she talked about horses and clomped around in her too small boots.

After my mom and Grandma left, Tim and I took down the pool for the season, and if you are keeping track this is the 3rd summer we have used our Intex $200 pool. Best money spent ever. We have never had problems with it molding or cracking during winter because we put it away dry and store it above the garage. If you are on the fence about buying one of these pools, all I can say is that it is worth it. (more pics from the first time we set up the pool in 2012)

When the pool was put away TIm and I were taking stock of our backyard and admiring our hard work over the years. It has come a long way since we moved in when there was a bull-dozed 1 foot cliff in our yard with subsequent 4 foot high mound of dirt that was buried under snow when we bought the house. (more pics of backyard from when we first moved in)

We were talking about how great our maple tree was doing, after limbing it up last year and taking away the planting bed underneath it, when one of us said, “we need a swing under there.” The other suggested a rope swing and then I grabbed my wallet and headed to Menards. An hour and $24 later Tim was climbing up our maple and knotting ropes.  Tim took a scrap of lumber and drilled a hole in the middle to make a seat/stand on one of the ropes, the other rope is officially the Jungle Man rope.

I didn’t use my camera all day and I didn’t really even think of my camera until Tim brought it out to me while the kids were playing on the new rope swings. He handed it over with a smile and stated, “Your not doing your job.” and I happily took the camera and started snapping. Sometimes it is nice to just live the day and not take photos, but most of the time I love stepping back and capturing the moment with my camera. Sunday was a good day because I got to do both.

For the record she ate cotton candy at 10 am Sunday morning and it was still on her face at 4pm that afternoon. Parenting fail? or Sunday Funday win?

And my two Jungle Boys.

The ropes were a hit. Yesterday morning before school they were playing on the ropes and it was also the first thing they did when they got home from school. This morning was the same thing. They ate breakfast, brushed their teeth, way faster than the dentist recommended 2 minutes, and then headed out to the ropes.

The ropes are great for Michael. They are an OT/SPD miracle. Michael gets to swing, which is great for Vestibular input  (balance, inner ear, knowing where your body is), Proprioceptive (Heavy work that improves attention and calms and focuses the nervous system — this is also why Michael needs to chew on things when trying to sit still)

Sometime OT isn’t very fun, like when I have him carry full laundry baskets up and down stairs for me, but sometimes OT is lots of fun.

And sometimes he doesn’t even know he is doing OT, but as he has gotten older he has learned and come to understand that his body works a bit different. He recognized right away that “These rope swings are great heavy work and the swinging calms me down!” I am so proud.

With all the kids in school now I have more free time to get house work done during the week. I hope this translates to more Sunday Fundays because everyone needs a few more fundays a week where we set aside the never-ending to-do list and say the house is good enough for now, errands can wait until tomorrow and I will finish that project later.

And I will leave you with this quick video of Michael getting some much-needed movement after school yesterday.

 

Boys First Day of School 2014

First Grade and Second Grade. Uffda. Where did my toddlers go? Were they not just sitting on plastic potty chairs in the living room in front of Thomas the Train?!

 

Last night when we were out buying tennis shoes for the boys and I asked the boys what they were most excited about for school the next day.

Patrick replied, “To meet all my new friends!”

Michael stated with a smile and not an ounce of sarcasm, “Math. Second graders get to learn multiplication and division!”

 

 

I love my boys. They couldn’t be more different except for their love of outer space. Tim has done a thorough job of making sure they are fascinated with all things science, especially space. Just look at those career choices…

Patrick wants to be a “Black Hole Scientist”

 

Michael still is holding strong with his goals of being a Meteorologist.

I am so proud of my boys. They have come so far and they love school.

Starred Photos30

Starred Photos31

They wanted to walk to school by themselves. I said that today I would walk with them all the way. They could have walked by themselves, but there are only so many first day of schools left before they won’t even want to be seen with me, let alone walk with me. Today’s walk to school with the boys was for me.

 

 

I am excited for the boys. I think this will be a great year.