Tuesday, May 31, 2011


This post is for everyone who thinks I always have a clean house.  This is proof that I don't.


Does everyone have a place where clutter collects?  At the old house the counter was only about 18" wide.  At the new house it has doubled.  Which means we have way more clutter.  It's not always like this.  Sometimes it's.....worse.  It does get to Mickey and I so it only lasts for a few days before getting cleaned up.  We can't seem to find a good solution to totally avoid this what with all the paperwork coming home from school, the mail and paper waiting to be read, and all the other non-important things that don't have a place to go landing there.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Let Summer Begin

This morning we went to the Edwardsburg Memorial Day Parade, as is our tradition.  We got there at 9:36.  We made good time.  Too bad the parade didn't start until 11.  Instead of wasting gas and going back home we let the kids play on the playground outside the school.  Then we went to McDonald's for a light breakfast, since we had all eaten before leaving anyway.  We still ended up with a decent spot, although we baked in the hot sun.

The kids couldn't sit still while the parade was going.  I can't blame them since people were throwing/handing candy, stickers, flags, and beads to them.  At times there wasn't enough to go around so we'd see this.

Competing for Candy

There must have been something to the right that drew Kade's attention.  They all walked away with a fair amount of candy so no one can complain.

After the parade we went to lunch with Mickey's family.  Can you guess where we went?  If you guessed McDonald's you're right.  We almost never go to that place twice a month but to be subjected to it twice in one day....that's just asking too much.

Since it was so hot we decided to visit the pool.  It was PACKED.  We found some friends and enjoyed their company since we couldn't really enjoy the frigid temperature of the water.  Somehow the kids didn't mind as much.  Maybe it has something to do with the fact that they are always moving.

Sunday, May 29, 2011


The drive home from church was a race against bad weather.  A big storm was heading our way, fast.  The storm sirens were blaring the alert and Meg's stomach started twisting and churning as her anxiety about storms began.

We made it home with time to spare.  Mickey came with us since he didn't have any meetings.  That was a nice treat.  We had leftovers from the party for a late lunch and I made everyone have quiet time.  The boys both slept.

After quiet time the kids watched a movie and made s'mores.  Watching marshmallows expand in the microwave is very entertaining.  Or so it seems.

Making S'mores

We ended our family time by playing two rounds of Apples to Apples Junior.  This is a lot easier to play with the kids than the regular version.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Father Son Campout

Last night the boys went camping.  Here's three generations plus an in-law.

Father Son Campout

They all had a good time tromping through the woods, playing catch, making s'mores, and playing Farkle.  Kade was the only one that actually slept well.  But that happens when you wear yourself out wrestling in the mud with a friend.  He was totally covered in dirt when he came home.


I think the best part about a birthday party, at least for a kid, is the presents.  Wouldn't you agree after looking at this picture?


We had our family party for Mattey tonight.  We had lots of food and family.  It was fun even though it rained and we couldn't go outside.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

New Specs

For the last five years I have worn the same glasses.  Luckily I only wear them in the house so they aren't too embarrassing.  I picked up my new pair today.  I have gotten a lot of compliments just from my family.  What do you think?

New Specs

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Meandering Quilt Top

I finally made some time to work on my quilt.  I finished the top today.

quilt top

This is really out of the box for me but I'm loving it.  Here's the pattern if anyone wants to make it.  Now I have to piece the back and figure out how to quilt it.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Peaceful Lunch

After spending some time with the kindergarteners this morning I came home and didn't want to do any work.  I called Mickey to see if he had any plans for lunch.  He didn't.  I got some lunch and drove over to work.  We walked across the river and had lunch in the park.  Besides the four lawnmowers speeding past it was a rather peaceful lunch.  After we ate we took a little walk along the beautiful (read:  stinky) river.  Even though we were downtown it didn't seem like it.

Peaceful Lunch

This evening I took Mattey to the middle school for her to try out some instruments before deciding which one she wants to learn.  (She did not want to learn a string.  So sad.)  The trombone and baritone were very tempting.  She could get a nice sound with the clarinet too but she settled on the flute.  At least the flute will sound lovely with a violin and piano.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Let Your Light Shine

No more working in the dark.  I finally got a light on the ceiling fan in the studio.

Studio Light

It was a joint effort.  I bought a light kit.  Mickey took down the (lightless) fan.  I spray painted the ugly, dated brass.  Mickey hung the fan and installed the light.  We work well together.

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Last year there was a bird nest in the dogwood tree right off the deck.  We never saw a bird in it.  It survived the winter and most of the spring until a greedy little red squirrel started hiding pieces of food (meant for the ducks) in the nest.  There were several storms during April and the nest fell apart.  Yesterday I saw a robin staking claim to the nesting spot.  What she started with looked like a mess.  I saw her this morning hard at work at her nest.  She must not rest on the Sabbath.


After a few more hours it no longer looks like a mess but a real nest where baby birds could live.  (picture was taken in the morning, still messy looking)

Isn't she a little late in her nest building?  It's close to June already.  I hope she has babies and we get to see them.  I'm sure we'll hear them once they hatch.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Double Digits

Today Mat turns 10!  Can that be right?

I asked her what the best part about turning 10 is and her reply was "Now I get to start the double digits".  I suppose when a lot of people you know have a two digit age and you don't it seems exciting.

Double Digits

We let her lounge around in her jams for a good part of the day.  (One of her favorite things.)  She and I went out shopping for a few things this afternoon.  Then we all went to Hacienda for dinner.  Now she's at her friend's house helping her celebrate her birthday.  They were born on the same day.  How fun is that?

Happy Birthday to you, Mattey!

Friday, May 20, 2011


Mattey seems to be stretching out her birthday.  Instead of it being one day it's now a week and a half.  Today she had cupcakes with her classmates and, later this afternoon, a party with friends.

Mat & her Friends

They made bracelets, ate pizza, played tag and other games, ate cake, and went home.  It was a whirlwind party but I think they had fun.

Kade got to hang out with the girls.  (That was very nice of Mattey to let him participate.  He really got into stringing beads.


I mentioned something about it to Mickey and he got a weird look on his face.  Not that he's against Kade doing something that's considered girly but...I explained that if he looked at the bracelet he would see it was a pattern so therefore he was really doing math, which is something he really likes.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Play Ball

Kade had his first game today.  He was really into it.  He played first base, third base, and pitcher.  He got three hits, scored three times, and had countless RBIs.  That's t-ball for you.  A great way to boost your stats.

Play Ball

Meg had a game at the same time.  We missed most of it but she did pitch a no hit inning.  She is also a great right fielder.  She is fast, can throw the ball, and actually backs up plays to first (which is something her team is in dire need of).

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Mickey's request was finally fulfilled.  He got a MacBook for work.  He brought it home today to get it all set up to "work" on it.

Mac Book

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Seamstress's Apprentice

Seamstress's Apprentice

For Activity Days Mattey learned to sew.  She and all the other girls each made a skirt.  There was a lot of hand holding and explaining but somehow I, the impatient teacher, helped Mattey make the skirt.  There were times that she did the pedal and I did the "driving" and other times where we switched.  At one point she was a little nervous about the needle going too fast so I cranked the wheel instead of using the pedal.  Luckily that part was only a few inches long.  Time will tell if she really wants to learn more about sewing.  My older machine, that a friend was borrowing, came back home so Mattey could have a machine of her own to use.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Tree Carvers

This evening we visited Mickey's grandpa.  Tomorrow's his birthday and we are all booked up.  Mickey made a cake, all by himself!  We stopped on the way to pick up the standard gift, a few Hersey bars and a McDonald's gift card.

During the visit we all ate a slice of cake.  It was good.  The conversation eventually turned to trees and the fact that Mickey's name was still in the beech tree in the woods.  We piled the kids in the back of the pick up and went for a bumpy drive to find the tree.

Tree Carvers

In 1980 the letters and numbers were only a thin cut from a knife.  In 31 years they have grown quite large.

Sunday, May 15, 2011


Tonight we hunted for our dinner, finding little we wanted.  We played a game of Farkle (it's a lot like Fill or Bust, can't find that anymore, and I won) then had some strawberry shortcake.

Strawberry Shortcake

That more than made up for not having a great dinner.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

First Anniversay

Today marks the one year anniversary of us moving into our house!  This year has gone by so fast and we have done so much.  In honor of this day I am going to share not one but 28 pictures with you.  They are before (Mickey quickly took these before stuff got moved in) and afters (my attempt at a similar angle) of the rooms.  Most of them have dramatically changed.

Walking in the front door you enter the foyer.

foyer before foyer after

To the left is the living room.  (still needs paint and...something)

living room before living room after

To the right is the dining room.

dining room before dining room after

Straight ahead from the front door is the kitchen/breakfast/family room.

kitchen before kitchen after great room before great room after

Off the kitchen is a hall with a bathroom...

main bath before main bath after

...the laundry room...

laundry room before laundry room after

...and the studio.  (still needs decor on the wall)

studio before studio after

Upstairs we have all the bedrooms.  The master.

master before master after

And its bathroom.  (I need a brave painter to reach the high ceiling and walls.  It will be a lighter shade of the master.)

mst bath before mst bath after

Kade's room.

bdrm #4 before bdrm #4 after

The kids' bathroom.

kid bath before kid bath after

Mattey's room.  (needs lots of help paint and cleaning wise)

bdrm #2 before bdrm #2  after

Megan's room.  (the next room to be painted, after she removes all her artwork)

bdrm #3 before bdrm #3 after

I am happy with the progress we've made thus far.  As you can see most of the walls are blank.  I have a few ideas of what I want to try.  I'm sure I'll post those as they happen.  As for right now I'm loving the minimalist vibe we have going on.  It's totally changing the way I look at things too.  I was at Hobby Lobby with Mickey a while ago and I kept pointing out all the things I liked but then I'd say, "Oh, I don't have anywhere/any room to put that."  Which is hilarious since the house does have plenty of room but we were crammed into the old house for too long that I don't want that to happen here.  At least not for several years or decades.

I hope you have enjoyed the tour of our house.

Friday, May 13, 2011

The Saver

We are so proud of Megan.  She has been saving her money, with a goal, since September.  She has had several occasions to spend her spending money but stuck with it.  Today she has reached her goal.  Wonder what she was saving for?  An iPod touch.  She was so excited.  She had Mickey count out her money to double check.  Yep, she had enough.  She thought she'd have to wait for it to be delivered but Mickey ordered it a few months ago when she was getting close.  He pulled it out and surprised her.  She was ecstatic!  Then there was all kinds of talk about "I want ______ app." "I want _____ ibook." and "how do I do _____?".

I took pictures but they didn't turn out.  We'll have to relive the moment and I'll try again.

iPod Touch

Finally remembered to take a picture, 6/24/11.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

More Legos

But this time it's a Lego game for the 360.  I should say so far that's all it is.  I'm sure some Pirate Legos will be making their way into our home sometime.

Pirate Lego Game

This game is fun and I've wasted a few hours playing it the past few days.  Unfortunately I keep getting stuck.  I wait for Mickey to come home and he whizzes right through with Kade chatting at him the entire time.  Maybe I need to waste more time playing to get better.  Nah...I think I'll just watch and learn and then give it a try myself.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

St. Joe, MI

At the end of the school year the kindergarteners go on an all day field trip.  This is the one Mickey usually gets roped talked into going on.  Thanks, Babe.  The buses drove the 4 classes to St. Joe, MI.  You might wonder what's there that could occupy all those 5-6 years old for so long.  Well, they have the Curious Kids Museum as well as the new Discovery Zone.  Inside the Discovery Zone there is a carrousel.

Silver Beach Carrousel

Of course Kade picked the one with a lance on it.  Such a boy.

The kids got to ride it twice.  Mickey said it was beautiful.  Now I'm sad I didn't go.  I love carrousels.  Maybe we'll have to take a family field trip.

I can't give many details since I didn't go but my favorite part of the day was getting a text from Mickey telling me which kids he was grouped with and asking if he needed to know anything about them.  He did just fine and made a new friend as well.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Little League

Little League

This is one of the teams we'll be cheering for this season.  Curtis Products.  Never heard of them before but they have a website.  So if you need some tubes bent give them a call.  Kade's first game is Saturday.  He's looking forward to it.