Monday, May 22, 2017

"W" For Woods

I let Troy write some "W"s on our calendar for the woods, which means we take a walk to our woods and explore. The first one of the year was a success, with bullfrog spottings right out of the gates. We just didn't catch any!



Bug spray. Bandaids. Tick checks. All a part of our normal summer happenings :)

There's one! Spotted him! Just couldn't get one though ;)

Happy Mother's Day to me!

Thanks to Troy's VERY thoughtful teacher, Mother's Day was made out to be a big deal in our house this year. Starting with Troy's very adamant request that I NOT wake up early on Mother's Day and he "would come and get me when it was time to wake up" :) Breakfast in bed made by my son! And supervised by his daddy, whose feet were ready to hit the floor running as soon as Troy got up that morning :)

Oatmeal with apples :)

My gift was a really cool canvas project Troy made at school!

And a very thoughtful card, handwritten by my boy :)

Message  - "I love you watching me (play). I love you tickling me."

After my breakfast in bed, we headed north for a fun day at Gramma and Grampa's house in Chicago!

Troy made a huge dinosaur scene out in the yard. The weather was perfection!

And Cass picked a shadier spot (like Bear) to play with Barbies galore.

Kindergarten Family Picnic

Nearing the end of the school year, the number of "special" things that popped up kept increasing. This one, all four of us were able to have a lunch picnic out on Troy's playground for lunch one day, and then stay for recess to play, too.

There were a LOT of people there! Finding a spot to sit was a challenge!


As soon as we were done eating, the kids wasted no time in running on to the playground.

Troy showed me how he was practicing jump rope skills.

And kept begging "Mom PLAY with me!" So I chased him around the (enclosed, well fenced) playground promptly.

After Troy moved on to showing Mike his basketball skills, I mentioned how I was going to go look for Cass since I hadn't seen her in awhile. I scouted out the playground and didn't see her in the first two minutes. It wasn't much longer until I heard the principal come over the PA announcing "we have a little girl with goldilocks hair who has a missing parent.... mom's name is Amy...."

And so I became the "lost parent" at the kindergarten picnic. Proud mom moment? My daughter knows to ask for help when she can't find me AND remembers my name. Winning!

Urbana Playscape and Nature Center

Early out days from school are usually a good chance to go and do something fun. I thought we'd take a ride over to the Urbana "Playscape" that just opened to see what it was like. As big fans of the Homer Lake Playscape, I wasn't sure what to expect. While not the same, it WAS a fun place to go spend an afternoon, without a doubt! Especially for my nature lovers :)

Rocks to climb on? Yes please.

Sand to dig in WITH provided sand toys?! Yep and yep.



When it started to drizzle, we headed inside into the nature center. I think we've only come in here once or twice before. Right now? Perfect for my kids!

Troy found fossils found by local scientists!

Cass enjoyed the bird watching room.

While Troy read about different frogs.

As the rain died down, we did a very short walk out onto the trail. The kids liked the bridge.

And the magnifying glass the staff had given the kids was a huge hit too!

Last Day - Preschool Pals

Cassidy's "Preschool Pals" were the perfect "pre-preschool" experience for her this spring. She got her first taste of what school would be like, and when it came to a close, she was already inquiring what would be next. Thankfully, she's very excited for next year's preschool, and proudly announces she's all done with preschool pals too.

On the last day, she brought me in to show me around. So fun to see her taking ownership of the different things, as the only other time I was in the classroom was before she began.

Here she is showing off her cubby, .




That night she was outside playing with our next door neighbor. While not classmates yet, once they begin school together in the same grade i think we'll have lots of "first day" bus pictures and such of these two!

On Top of the World

With not *quite* the same level of fearlessness as her brother, I am often reminded that she is still quite brave. The biggest, tallest thing at the playground is the first thing she always runs to, no matter where we are. This day was no exception. Without a doubt, she's inspired by her brother and I am so thankful for that!


Skirts and Dirt

I'm so grateful not only do we have so many boys and girls right in the neighborhood for the kids to play with, but they all (boys and girls alike) just love poking around outside in the dirt. This trio of girls ended up in our backyard one day hiding little beads in the garden and playing hide and go seek looking for them. The simple things!


Date Night - Bulldog Bash

Now *officially* school-age parents, we attended the annual "Bulldog Bash" for the very first time. Mike and I loved the chance to get out, dress up, see friends AND support the school foundation, too. It was a fun night and one that will be an annual tradition, I'm sure!


Our small town newspaper captured this pic of Mike and I. Not knowing it was being snapped, I love this pic. Date nights are great. I sure do love conversation with this man and thankful to have this moment in time frozen. 

Family Day - Pizza and Ice Cream

Gearing up for the busiest time of year for Mike called for a family day. We don't often go out to eat just the four of us, but we did this particular day and hit up an old favorite, Old Chicago. The kids were great and the pizza was delish.


To wrap the day of errands up, we stopped near our old neighborhood for Fro Yo, too. Anytime the crew can build their own ice cream creations is a GOOD day for all! 

Saturday, May 20, 2017

The scariest five seconds ever

Ok this might be a bit of an exaggeration. But for real. My kid simply cannot know how to shimmy and shake like this (or whatever she does at the very end).

Mama re-evaluated her song choices on the radio after this day. Because, um, wow. Wait for it at the very end. I didn't know she was doing this until I watched it back later.


"Diamond Collection" Quotes

I frequently send Mike quotes from Cass and Troy throughout the day. This one was great.

"Mom, do you know what to do with a diamond collection? You put all your diamonds together and you look at your diamonds!"

Mike's response of "OH BROTHER" was my thoughts exactly.


From Seed to Salad

I adore our kindergarten teacher. Can I say that enough!? They recently did a unit Troy LOVED called "from seed to salad". He learned so much about seeds growing and the big excitement at the end was a huge salad bar for snack one day (thanks to donations from all the parents). Wow. What a spread. I was so thankful I could go volunteer to help out with it!

Every kid gobbled down two or three plates worth of salad. I think some of the parents would be surprised to learn this, but yep! They actually did!

I landed on the kindergarten Facebook page before the end of the day. Yay for classroom fun!

"Some of My Best Work"

Troy began working on this while Mike and I were out and Gramma was watching the kids. It kept growing and being added to, and eventually he proclaimed "This is some of my best work!"

Yes, yes it is son.

Visit with Gramma (and Garth)

Gramma came to town for a Garth Brooks concert for the weekend. We had a visit to Jupiters for lunch and the kids loved playing some video games after we were done eating. This is them playing "Jurassic Park".


Mom and I had a fun night out just the two of us! We attended the world's largest karaoke event (LOL) aka the Garth Brooks concert.


Wouldn't be a complete trip if we didn't stop into Cracker Barrel for a bite! We love you, Gramma!

Big Kid Projects

Projects are the very "in" thing around here right now. There is a whole slew of "those" firsts you don't see coming, or listed on milestones anywhere and this is one of them.

The first time your kid draws actual people instead of just scribbles and you can kind of tell what it is.

She loves little activity books. Big coloring books? Not so much. Go figure.

And this kid. With all the cutting and taping and gluing and creating. This face is his thinking face.