Blog Archives for category Playing

Another day, another mask. 

  

Saturday evening playtime

        

Freeze dancing!

Katie loves the ATV, too!

Of course as soon as I tried to get a video of her she stopped riding. 

  

The baby is going to school. 

Katie set up the lunchbox and baby saying they were going to school. 

  

Owen being Owen

That is a back support for a chair that had been unpacked and just sitting there. So of course it became a hat.

   

I think he loves his ATV.

Remember me saying we wanted to try to give the kids experiences instead of stuff? Yeah, well, we also agreed that bigger things instead of lots of little junky stuff would be good, too…so we let Owen decide if he wanted to spend his birthday money to pay half of an ATV. (We had wanted to get them the power wheels but Owen is too big. A neighbor has an electric ATV that Owen loved so that’s how we got the idea.) He immediately agreed so he gave us all of his remaining birthday gift cards and still owes us about $100. 

He was ABSOLUTELY GIDDY. 

  

Unfortunately, it arrived like this so Tom had some work to do.

  
    

This is how she was playing outside before school. 

  

The neighborhood squad car wash.

  

  

Bubbles before bedtime

  

Crazy woman driver!

She loves her new power wheels! She was chasing Papa around and then driving crazy circles around the yard. 

Aquatic Center Fundraiser

Papa and Grannie took the kids to the local aquatic center for a school fundraiser while Tom and I went out for our anniversary. I sent them with our waterproof camera!

Sibling play time

She was trying to brush his hair and he was having none of it. So she just sat on him.

After which this ensued.

A quick visit to the splash pad

Friends invited us to the pool but then as can quickly happen with kids, behavior went downhill and they cancelled. We were already dressed for water so I took them to the splash pad. It worked out better, though, since we were awaiting the arrival of Grannie and Papa!


Braving Chicago, Day 2: Shedd Aquarium

Starting the day with bear hugs.

Going into the pool (aka basement) for breakfast.

Arriving at Soldier Field after parking in the garage (it’s kitty corner from the aquarium).

Waiting patiently while we get our free (!!) tickets! 


Getting ready for a 4-D movie short.

Do you know what these are?

How about now?

Shark eggs!

We got a stranger to take our group pic…

But of course I had to do a selfie!

After a somewhat agonizing drive home through rush hour traffic, we arrived to this:

I’m glad we got to see our friends, but after two full days in Chicago I cannot understand how people there don’t go postal. Between traffic, bikers, and congestion, I had a headache almost the entire time I was in a car plus I got stuck in rush hour coming home today so that made it a sucky ending. I understand there is a crap ton to do there but it’s just not for me. So I was right, I will be visiting even less then I visited DC because at least DC was only 20 minutes away. Caitlin, I love you, but next year you’re coming to the ‘burbs. :) :heart:

I wouldn’t brave Chicago traffic for just anyone.

My good friend Caitlin (that I just had to leave in Virginia) and her kids came to Chicago (they were already in Indianapolis) so we drove down to explore some touristy stuff with them. I hate traffic and congestion so it was a mini nightmare for me… But I did it.

Our first stop was the Museum of Science and Industry…where we spent seven hours (egads, I know). The kids had fun but it was a long day.

At the Toy Maker area, it cost $5 to get your own personalized gravitron—and you could watch as it passed through each station. It was cooler than we thought it would be.

There was a Fault (you can’t see the red light on in the photo) so the human operator had to come in and fix it.

And I was thinking it was just a top but it’s a gyroscope—so much cooler than a top. They had a little station to test it out so we all played with it. Then it was back to the exhibits.

Katie got to create her own fireworks display!

Wind tunnel! Owen wanted no part of it (even though he had to do it at the $2 machine in Virginia at swim lessons).


I should have recorded more of this—the kids had an absolute blast with it:

Ice cream for lunch because why not?!

The kids loved the big tractors SOOO much.

If you stood still, butterflies would land on your shadow.

Then it was finally time to head to the hotel… The drive was a bit precarious with all the traffic and insane bikers…but we all made it in one piece. The hotel was really neat—it was all sports-themed and the rooms were like dorms.

And then after a brief rest, it was off to Navy Pier! The kids really wanted to do the Ferris wheel (like we did at National Harbor).

After we walked around a bit, it was time for dinner—and we wanted to sit down and waste time since we had to wait until the fireworks at 9:30. I figured I deserved this:

The traffic wasn’t actually that bad getting out after the fireworks (thank heavens for small favors) and soon we were back at the hotel, where the kids were all super excited to sleep on the top bunks!!

The kids finally quieted down around 11 and Caitlin and I stayed up chatting until almost 12:30.

First time at the water park!

Our neighbors invited us to the water park and we eagerly accepted. Unfortunately I didn’t have my waterproof camera so missed being able to take pics of the little ones going down the kiddie slide and Owen going down the big water slide! This was the only pic I got of them—the other two were off playing in the grass.

Also unfortunately the day was cut short because of weather. Kind of. There were darkish clouds in the sky…

And apparently Katie has now turned into Maggie and completely freaks out at just the mere thought of dark clouds and potential rain so she was a hot mess crying to go home. I put it off as long as I could but when it actually started to sprinkle ever-so-slightly out was game over.   

A few minutes at the mall playground. 

The kids had to run an errand with me and the mall playground happened to be right outside the store I was at…so I let Katie play for a few minutes. (If it looks somewhat familiar, it’s because it’s the same parent company as the mall by us in Virginia.)

  

Returning mail leads to this. 

The neighbor kids brought over our mail which then led to our kids going to play at their house. About a half hour later the mom and I had this text exchange:

Stacey: Girls are putting on a concert on the trampoline.
Me: I’ll be over.

I walked in to them jumping in tutus (of course there was an outfit change—there’s always an outfit change). :) So we just sat and talked while all four kids played and rode in the power wheels. 

Ahhhhh, neighbors. ❤️

   

Len Summer Christmas 2017

Nick and Gracie making Christmas M&Ms (the rest went into Lisa’s monster cookies).

Just a few brats to cook…

All the kids like to fish but they say Aubrey is the one who loves it the most and is the best at it. She apparently gives lessons to other kids at their house!

Katie caught a fish!

Someone took an unplanned jump into the river (learning you can’t walk on lily pads):

Drying off…

I think this picture is a tradition.

And the mandatory annual family Christmas photo! Every year they give us grief about taking it… And this year with the craziness of the move I didn’t post it immediately and they were all asking about it!! So there. :p

And the annual kid comparison—Katie is getting closer to Aubrey but Aubrey is still ahead (which should be the case, as she’s almost 9). And as usual, Owen is definitely taller than Gracie…

But I think he beats Nick this year!!


Last year:

More fishing!

After a campfire and s’mores it was time for bed. The kids decided to all sleep in the living room… Poor Timmy. :)