Saturday, June 30, 2012

We went to Bloomington for a wedding

For the 3rd time in three weeks, we made our way back to Illinois.  This time, for my cousin's wedding in Bloomington.  We (I) decided to make it a "day" trip, driving there and back in the same day.  Overall, the trip wasn't horrible, just long!  We ended up not getting back until 1230am!  But, it was worth it to see my cousin get married and see my family and let them see the kids.
wins the award for "worst traveler ever"-this girlie did not take a nap the entire drive to Bloomington-the whole 3 and 1/2 hours-she had plenty of time

The wedding was sweet and our kids were mostly quiet through it.  Liam tried to count the flowers in the aisle.  I don't think it was loud enough for the recording.  The couple came out to lit sparklers.  The kids weren't too sure about the sparks and smoke.

Liam had a lot of energy.  He had a good time running around the group of cousins.

Kella said "hi" to Everett.

At the reception, there was a cool fountain.  I got some of the cousins to pose in front of it-Ewan, Cale, Marcus and Abbie

Had a New Orleans theme with the decorations.  The kids dug in right away to the chocolate turtles that were the wedding favors.

cool masks to wear

sometimes one mask is not enough

The kids were able to get a carriage ride

Marcus got to sit up front.  A nice treat for him-he was the oldest kid there and I think felt "too old" at times.

And then the lights dimmed, and the dancing started!

Oh the dancing!

Once the lights dimmed, it was time to party!  The kids were like moths to a flame with the lights on the dance floor.  Ewan and Liam had some awesome moves to share with everyone.  Liam's dancing was made more awesome by the 20-some strands of beads around his neck.
no-nap Kella appreciated all the dancing action

Cale eventually made it to the floor

Ewan and Kella danced together

My aunt broke out the glow sticks.  The kids thought that they were way cool.  We ended up with a bunch of them in the car that evening.

solo dancer

Friday, June 29, 2012

while Dad's away...

Wednesday, we dropped Andy off at the airport for his flight to Austin.  He will be there 10 days working with youth football.  That leaves me holding down the fort with me "crew".  It's been okay so far.  Here's what we've been doing...
*tried to get Kella's pictures taken and then realized that I was at the wrong location
*late bedtimes
*working on the summer reading program
*library trip-the 3 big boys on bikes and me pulling Liam and Kella in the bike trailer-we made a nice parade

Some things coming up...
*balloon glow Saturday night
*4th of July festival stuff to look at this weekend
*another attempt to get Kella (and Liam's) pictures taken
*more karate
*grocery shopping (hmm...)
*picking up Andy at the airport on Friday!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

to the Arch!

I'm back with the rest of our trip photos.  Last Friday, we drove into St. Louis again, this time to go see the arch.  The boys were excited to go and get a chance to ride to the top.
We parked our car super close to the river.  Of course, I had to get a picture of the boys next to the Mississippi.  (Ewan is there, too.  He is hiding behind Liam.)

And, then I tried for a photo by the arch.  Ewan is dancing to some music that was playing.  He has the moves!  Maddie and Abbie are in this picture, too.  And, yes, then we did climb the stairs.  With all the kids and 2 strollers.

I even got a picture of us! (and Liam, and Kella)

"Marcus, touch the arch!"

Standing in line was rough.  It was hot and sunny.  But, the line actually moved at a steady pace and in no time we were setting off the security detector alarms with things we didn't take out of our pockets or sunglasses I forgot to take off my head.

Look up!

Andy went to get tickets for the ride to the top of the Arch and we went and took the kids for a snack break.

The two "little" cousins

Marcus and Cale said they wanted to go up the Arch.  Ewan said "no", so we didn't get him a ticket.  Then he changed his mind, but by then, the purchase was made.  So Aunt Bitsy and I stayed on the ground with Ewan, Liam, Kella, Maddie, Abbie and Jacob.  While Andy took Marcus and Cale.  We spent our time playing in the musuem area.  (too many "don't touch" signs)  Then we went to the sovenier stores where we got a couple stuffed animals-eagle for Ewan, cardinal for Kella, food for Liam (who was falling apart), keychains for the older boys and a magnet for our fridge.  Maddie and Abbie scored some stuffed animals as well-Abbie was super excited about her prairie dog.  After our snacking, we took the kids outside to play under the trees.  It was actually pretty comfortable.  The hardest part was just waiting for the rest of our group knowing that the kids, especially the littlest ones, were getting more hungry and tired by the minute.

Marcus and Cale got to see some while waiting to go up the Arch.

on a scale

in the pod-going up!

at the top!  They thought is was cool.  They could see the ball park and lots of the river.  They found our car and Cale saw me running around in circles (it made it easier for him to see me). 

Then, it was back down, to the cars and then back to the cousins' house for a super late lunch.  After that, we just hung out the rest of the evening.  The next day, we left and drove back to Decatur.  I left everyone there and drove back home that afternoon (had to work-boo, and I brought our dog back, and tons of our stuff).  The rest of the family came back on Sunday, transported by Grammy Linda.  They were ready to be home, especially Marcus and Cale, who had been gone for about a week and a half.  We've been taking it very easy since then, slipping back into our everyday summer groove. 

We loved visiting St. Louis.  We'll be back, I'm sure!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Bathing beauty

Kella's first trip to the pool was last week. She had fun crawling around at the edge of the water, looking for leaves to eat. Yesterday, we took her to the inside pool where she thought it was fun to kick her legs as we pulled her through the water.

The nurse of 1887

I have to share this information that was published in a newsletter from the hospital I work at. Makes you appreciate how hard nurses worked (and still do-just in different ways) The following was taken from a 1887 magazine published by Cleveland Lutheran Hospital:

"In addition to caring for your 50 patients, each nurse will follow these regulations:

*daily sweep and mop the floors of your ward, dust the patients' furniture and window sills
*maintain an even temperature in your ward by bringing in a scuttle of coal for the day's business
*light is important to observe the patient's condition. Therefore, each day fill kerosene lamps, clean chimneys and trim wicks. Wash windows once a week.
*the nurse's notes are important to aiding the physician's work. Make your pens carefully. You may whittle nibs to your individual taste.
*each nurse on day duty will report everyday at 7am and leave at 8pm
*graduate nurses in good standing with the Director of Nursing will be given an evening off each week for courting purposes, or two evenings a week if you go to church regularly
*each nurse should set aside a goodly sum of her wages for her declining years as not to become a burden. Example: If you earn 30 you should set aside 15
*any nurse who smokes, uses liquor in any form, gets her hair done at the beauty shop, or frequents dance halls will give the Director of Nursing good reason to suspect her worth, intentions, and integrity
*the nurse who performs her labor, serves her patients, and doctors faithfully and without fault for a period of 5 years will be given an increase by the hospital of five cents a day, providing there are no hospital debts outstanding"

I'm thankful for those who chose to make this their profession. Compared to this, my job seems easy!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

back to Illinois...and then on to St. Louis

After a few days at home, it was time to pack up the van and head back to Illinois to pick up Marcus and Cale.  Then, we drove to Uncle Eric and Aunt Bitsy's house in Godfrey, Illinois-the perfect stepping off point for going into St. Louis.  Wednesday night, we just hung out and let the cousins get to play around each other.  We had some pacifyer drama-Kella was in heaven-but overall the kids had fun playing together and I know Maddie and Abbie were excited that they had company.

Thursday morning, we drove into the city to go to the Museum of Science and Industry.  Garmin took us on an interesting route that totally avoided the interstates.  Grammy Pammy was with to help manage 8 kids 8 and under. 
The boys really liked this conveyor belt, which was the first thing they saw when we came through the doors.

Lots of things to touch and move

some type of touch pad

glass elevators are always fun.  and our group took up the entire thing

a dinosaur dig with lots of small pieces of debris for Kella to eat

more dinosaurs

kids can't resist looking into a hole-this one is looking down onto the interstate

I think we walked the entire museum and then it was time to walk all the way back to our cars to get our food for a picnic lunch.  Then, back to the house to rest up for the next day.  We were tired, the kids were tired.  Ready for a rest.

the classic "cousins eating" photo that I'm famous for

the traditionl "young cousins in the bathtub" that I'm sure many families have

And then to bed to rest up for tomorrow's trip to the Arch.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

our time in Illinois

Checking back in?  Here are pictures from the few days we spent in Illinois after dropping off Marcus at camp.  We started with a trip to the Children's Museum in Decatur.  I love this place.  The admission is not expensive and all their activities are hands on and play oriented.  The kids had a blast.
brave stinker to climb to the top of the 2 story net climby thing.  What you don't see is Andy following him up-a tight fit in some spots-it's not quite made for adults

I stalked Liam a fair amount while the older ones played together

cool water feature

of course, he would enjoy painting on a window

sweet fat legs!

Kella got some Aunt Kim love

I think Cassie was happy to have her cousins to play with

they had fun pretending to shop for groceries

please note Ewan's basket has fruits, veggies, eggs and 2 big things of ice creams

and Cale-he had everything boxed, premade, sugary-he loves his sugar

the boys got to play games with Grammy Linda

Saturday, we got to meet "new" cousin baby Everett

The boys got to play with Xander and Grammy and Lanny got to see all the kids.

After chillin' at Jim and Courtney's for the morning, we packed up the van and headed back to Indiana for a few days.  Cale stayed in Illinois at Grammy Linda's and got lots of attention, play games, had a sleepover with Cassie and got to see Madagascar 3.  Spoiled.

Back in Indiana, we got to unpack and relx for a few days.  Then, it was time to repack and head back to Illinois to get Marcus and Cale and start the second half of our June Illinois adventure.

Stay tuned.