Sunday, June 28, 2015

Drive In

On Sunday night we went to the drive in to see Inside Out which was as cute as everyone is saying.

Drive In
Since seeing the movie the kids and I have had some great talks about our emotions, how Anger sometimes takes over our brains, how Fear and Sadness are needed even when we don't want them.  There may or may not have been a few moments since when the kids have said something along the lines of, "Mom, is Anger running your Headquarters right now?"

Thursday, June 25, 2015


In a (pantomimed) battle with a dragon this afternoon, Michael fell to the ground, his (foam) sword beside him.

"Did the dragon get you, bud?"

"No, I'm just resting now."

That's the thing about summer, especially when you're five.  There's no pressure to keep at those dragons.

June 25

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Jurassic Park

Sophie and Michael are years away from seeing any Jurassic Park movies, but they know what they're about and are fascinated with the concept.  One of Michael's best buddies from the childcare center introduced him to the idea of making Jurassic Park out of blocks and dinosaur toys, and this morning Michael got Sophie into the game.

June 24

Sunday, June 21, 2015


We had a fun summer Saturday attending a local festival in which Mike ran in a 5K, and we all hung out with friends, had a pancake breakfast with some favorite characters, rode rides, caught up with some out of town pals, attended a barbecue afterward, and took in festival fireworks before crashing hard back at home.

Liberty Fest-5

Liberty Fest-3

Liberty Fest-2

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Strawberry Picking 2015

My mom, the kids, and I spent this morning picking strawberries at a local farm.  It's been a soggy summer so far, but the berries were ready!







Sunday, June 14, 2015


We spent Saturday afternoon at the Detroit Zoo, mainly to see the animatronic dinosaurs on display there this summer for the Dinosauria attraction.  Michael's passion for giant reptiles (and the regular kind) is contagious and even led me to watch a TED talk on spinosaurus this evening.  By myself.  When I could have been doing practically anything else.  Contagious.

June 13-3

While the giraffes, polar bears, and reptile house at the Detroit Zoo still please this little family, the Dinosauria attraction was a nice addition to our visit.  We also paid to experience the Ice Age simulator ride.  Michael and Sophie really got a kick out of that, and Mike and I loved their belly laughs.

This also happened to be our first trip without the stroller or wagon, and we finally rode the train.  It just never fit into our visit before.  When we came out of the tunnel on that ride, I noticed Michael's eyes appeared wide and startled.  "You didn't like that tunnel, did you, bud?"  I asked.

He focused on me, and his cheeks lifted slowly.  "I loooooved it!"

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Neighborhood Ice Cream Social

One of our biggest concerns about our new-ish neighborhood is how few kids there seem to be for Michael and Sophie to play with.  Mike attended last year's HOA meeting and learned that there are more families with young kids toward the back of our sub, but even with family walks and trick-or-treating back there, we just have not gotten to know them.

I was thrilled to see a sign at the entrance to the sub last week announcing that there would be an ice cream social in the neighborhood.  As far as I know, there have been no similar events here in years.

It turns out there are lots of kids here, and we are not alone in being somewhat surprised about that.  We met a lot of families last night and heard a lot of neighbors saying to one another, "Hi, I'm so-and-so.  I live across the street from you."  It seems a lot of neighbors are eager to connect more.  Last night seemed like a great step forward!

June 13

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Last Day of Childcare

I felt pretty emotional this week as Michael and Sophie's early childhood seems to be coming to a close.  There will be no more childcare center days, no more regular Grandma days, and perhaps a little less mommy-guilt as I enter the time when it is more widely acceptable to kiss my kids good-bye in the mornings.  The end of my school year is upon us as well, and there may actually be time to complete a full thought without eight or nine tasks to complete entering my mind.  I feel the need to reflect on this transition further before I try to express much more about it here.

June 12

June 12-2
We kept the kids in the same childcare center they started in as infants even after our move.  It was still on my way home from work and not too far out of Mike's way even after changing jobs, and we wanted to avoid having the kids change schools twice in two years (with kindergarten coming up).  Overall we really liked that center, especially the play-based learning and healthy snacks and lunches.  Michael and Sophie made friends in the infant room that they played with right up until this last day of pre-k.

June 12-3
That afternoon we went to play in the park in our old neighborhood.  It was a fun treat for all of us and really helped me to see how much they have grown and learned over the years.  I used to be so nervous letting my toddlers climb these structures!  Now they bravely slide down the poles, run back and forth from one structure to another, to the swings and back, and I hardly worry.

June 12-4

June 12-5

June 12-6

Sunday, June 7, 2015

All the patio's a stage

June 7
June 7-2

When I inevitably started second guessing our patio size, color, and shape choices the day before the stamped concrete work began, one of the many concerns I presented Mike was if it would look too much like a stage if we stuck with the rectangular shape rather than changing to something more organic.

I'm pretty sure I interrupted him before he could respond, and we stuck with our design.

Mike, the kids, and I took or first stroll around the finished patio on Friday night.  By dinner time on Saturday I had taken in several shows from the hill in our backyard (aka the lawn seats), my favorite being a performance of an original episode of Little Einsteins complete with all the "Leo's patting, Annie's patting, June is patting, but we need...more...power" type details.  We found a CD of Little Einsteins stories for sale at our local library some weeks back, and that old favorite got a new surge of popularity around here.

Tonight Sophie gave a brief dance performance before a summer storm rolled in.

June 7-3

Friday, June 5, 2015

After the splash pad

June 5
The kids' child care center has a splash pad. I sent swimsuits with them last week, brought the suits home for swim lessons over last weekend, and didn't send them back when the weather turned cold and rainy earlier this week. 

I bet you see where this was going.  

When the temps got into the low eighties yesterday, the kids' class suited up for water play...and Michael cried because he didn't have a suit.  They weren't the only kids who were unable to splash and had to resort to playing in the sand or climbing the climbers like normal, but they are the only ones who are mine, and I felt terrible.  I've always bought two sets of snow pants and boots for the winter to avoid this kind of trouble, but since splash pad time barely gets started before we're all home for the summer, we've never bothered doing the same for swimsuits.  

To make myself feel better (the kids were over it pretty quickly), we went to a neighborhood splash pad this afternoon as soon as I got home from work.  This grassy area was nearby, and the kids both enjoyed running around in it for a while once they lost interest in the water.

Thursday, June 4, 2015


June 4-2

June 4-3
"Now it's time for you to be stylish.  You can have a mohawk, a braid, or some curlsy things."

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