Blog Archives for category Tom

It’s time to get away from the boxes and mess.  

Road trip to Michigan for a mini vacation including the Len Christmas!


A sight I’m going to love…

This is the playground that’s just a few minutes from our house.


Our first family bike ride!

Tom and I got new bikes today and Owen is practicing to earn his new bike (also bought today)!

It’s challenging to take a picture while riding! The whole time I was trying I kept saying “Don’t drop the phone. Don’t drop the phone.” :)

A pic of my new beauty:

It was more than I wanted to spend but after sitting on a bunch and testing them, it was the clear winner. It’s a Specialized Roll Sport Low Entry.

Celebrating Katie’s birthday with the neighborhood gang.



Enjoying watching our kids play nicely together. 


She tried to sleep here. 

She was cuddling with daddy when it was time to go to bed. She said “Okay!” then rolled over and did this. Nice try, little one.

July 4th with the neighbors

Three happy kids tonight doing sparklers and watching the neighbor’s bigger (but still small) fireworks.

And some of the super cool pics I got with my waterproof camera on the Fireworks settings—these were just simple fireworks we did in the street. I was amazed at how cool they looked!

Our last July 4th cookout at the pool

We went to the pool just after it opened at 10am so it would be less crowded (I like less crowded) and it gave me a chance to get some good pictures of the kids.

Tom helped set up and then man the grill for two hours.

This is more what it looks like when it gets crazy…which is the time we leave. I cannot stand the pool to be that busy and loud. :)

Not a good start to N Chicago.

I woke up to this series of texts from Tom:

After a bunch more texts about calling roadside and having to wait and the guy going to the wrong exit first…I got this.

Yeah. Turns out the fuel evaporation line was clogged which prevented him from filling the gas tank. He ended up getting into Gurnee about 6pm instead of the 3pm as we planned. So, not a great start. It could have been worse, though, so we’re still thankful (can you imagine if the truck couldn’t have been fixed and they had to send a new truck and everything had to be unloaded and reloaded?!).

Today’s big project!

The military moves us but we know we’re overweight so we always take a load of really heavy stuff ourselves. It just so happens that this time it worked out to take it in advance so Tom can:

  1. pick up the keys and make sure the house is ready (our lease there starts July 1).
  2. paint the garage before we move all our stuff in (it really needs it and the landlord was cool with it and even bought the paint).
  3. move the deep freezer door-to-door without having to empty and defrost it (I’ve been trying to empty it but couldn’t do it—I didn’t start early enough and the time flies).

It’s hard to see in this picture but there’s a good 6′-8′ of stuff in the shadows there…all of the heavy-duty tool storage cabinets, all of Tom’s tools, our awesome stainless refrigerator (it’s been unplugged two days and we’re already going crazy—the house fridge is much smaller and currently has no water filter or ice capability), the grill and propane tanks, and a few random totes. Tom worked his butt off today (plus had help from a friend) and will have a long day tomorrow as he’s planning on leaving at 4am to get up there by dinner.

Another afternoon at the pool…

Getting sunscreen on…

When Owen gets the camera…

When mom gets the camera back…

And yes, I actually got in the pool. It was HUMID. And then the sun came out and I got HOT.

Our good friends…

Their toys had gotten sucked in but they were both to scared of the bugs in there to reach in. :)

Sitting out during the break (the last 10 minutes of every hour) plotting their next move in the water gun war with the opposing team.

A new hand-me-down suit from our neighbor Maddie.

Cuddling with Daddy

This is how Maggie helps load the truck. 


Driveway drinking with a special guest.

Every so often Tom will join us…


Surprise birthday!

It was my friend Caitlin’s birthday and she didn’t think I knew, so we surprised her with cake and ice cream…and took them out to dinner. They just happened to have face painting that night, so three of the four kids did that (Owen stayed at the table watching Nationals baseball with Tom). The face painting lady and I even convinced Caitlin to get her face done as she didn’t think she’d ever had her face painted.

Katie picked the Ice Princess.





Just once before we move!!

Tom has been cleaning and organizing the garage to get ready to take up a full U-HAUL this weekend…so in the process the garage was cleaned out just enough to pull my car in.

It only stayed long enough for the picture.

Excellent dinner with excellent friends!

We were planning on having a going away party but long story short we ended up cancelling. Heather and Eric had RSVPd so we asked if they wanted to go out to dinner. They did, so we picked a local French place we’d all been wanting to try—Bistro L’Hermitage! You might recognize them from baseball (Eric was Owen’s coach this year) and our F*** It Friday group! Our sitter had to cancel at the last minute, and their sitter was able to watch ours, too! YAY FOR FRIENDS!

We got rained out at the pool!

It was so hot and humid at Owen’s Field Day that we had decided to take the kids to the pool when Owen got home. Tom was home as well, so we all went down…and it started sprinkling almost immediately. It was fine for a bit and then it started raining harder. Tom stayed with the kids as they were already in the pool while I went to sit and wait in the car (it was chilly in the rain). They didn’t last too much longer. These are the pics (and video) I snapped before the rain started.

We have our own little Rainman.

Tom brought home his whiteboard from work and left it in the living by room. He walked by later to see this—Owen had completed a bunch of addition problems:

2 + 2 = 4 + 4 = 8 + 8 = 16 + 16 = 42 (his first error) + 42 = 84 + 84 = 168 and on and on.

By the time I got home, he had done more:

He kept adding sums…and did them all in his head. Once I started going through them (which I told him I had to do for it count as his nightly math homework), there were a few errors, but really still impressive. I’m not sure if you can see it, but he went all the way up to 16001664 + 16001664 = 32003128 + 32003128 (which wasn’t the right answer but it was close).

Sometimes he just blows our minds.

Happy Father’s Day


Dual Birthday Pool Party

After watching the forecasts and worrying about the weather all week (the forecast varied from thunderstorms to 60% chance of rain to light rain all day)…we decided to go ahead with the party and it ended up absolutely perfect!! It was overcast at the start and gradually got sunnier and warmer throughout the party—enough so that I had Tom grab my suit when he went back to get the cake!

We had 60 guests (kids and adults!!) and the pool was probably the busiest it will be all season (aside from the days they have cookouts with free food or night swims with free ice cream). But it all went smoothly, everyone had a blast, and there was plenty of pizza and cake for multiple helpings (once I started cutting the serves 48 cake and realized my small pieces were still not small enough to get me close to 60 pieces, I started halving those…and then ended up having half the cake left so kids got seconds and thirds).

The gaggle of dads. They didn’t move from this spot the whole time. 😂


The kids were fairly patient about opening gifts once we got home…and they LOVED everything. They got Bop It (thank heavens I found the volume control!) and Owen picked up on it right away, Katie dug right into the glitter glue and construction paper, Owen picked out his favorite baseball cards from a new pack, Katie put together her Disney Lego, we’ve been shot multiple times by Owen’s new nerf gun, and both kids were OVER THE MOON about all the gift cards and getting to go shopping once we move! They both said it was a great birthday!