We are getting closer to the end of summer and I don’t think any of us want it to be over! We are having a blast. Here are our July highlights:
- 4th of July weekend, we went to our friend’s lake house. They have all the fun lake toys: boat, tube, kayak, stand up paddle board…the kids were entertained (and so were the parents). We got to watch fireworks from the boat in the middle of the lake. Wendy and I did early morning walks. It was a perfect get-a-way.
- On the 4th of July, Ben had his debut show of synchronized swimming. He rocked it! He had a solo to the Lion King’s “I just can’t wait to be King”, duet to “Anything you can do, I can do better”, and a group dance to “Cuban Pete”. The team welcomed him with open arms and Ben had the time of his life! At the end of the season, he ended up getting first in all of the above for his age division against the other country clubs.
- The boys finished up their swim team season. They had so much fun. I loved having something to do everyday at the start of summer, now I am looking forward to more down time and hanging at home.
- Josie and Will wrapped up golf lessons. They both got 2nd place in their age division in the final competition.
- I rode my bike across Iowa, well part of Iowa. RAGBRAI was fantastic.
- Billy got in as much golf as he could.
What an amazing trip to the Gulf Shore. We would definitely go back again. It was the kind of trip you don’t need a vacation from your vacation when you get home, so relaxing! The ocean was so peaceful and spending time with our extended family was just what we needed. Even Josie said her favorite thing was spending time with everyone outside of the holidays.
- Billy kayaked in the ocean a TON. He took out the kids (especially the boys) and the two of us got out there twice.
- Josie officially turned 10 in Alabama, how cool is that?
- Joanne and Ben put on a tap dance to Elvis Presley’s “Teddy Bear”. It may be the cutest thing I’ve ever seen.
- We had a fun parents night out while Grandma, Grandpa, and Josie watched the kids.
- Lots of fun on the beach! We took a sand castle class, we played soccer, raced, walked, and so much more.
- Uncle Johnny knocked his tooth out when a big wave hit his Stand Up Paddle Board. Luckily, the tooth stuck in the board!
- The boys had a peanut scare that involved me having to stab them in the thigh with EPI Pens as we drove down the highway to the ER. Will unbuckled his seat belt and later told us he was going to jump in the trunk. I stabbed him about 4 times before realizing I was using the one I already did on Ben. Ben’s entered above his knee cap versus on his thigh (he kept guarding his thigh) so his knee was sore for a day. The check in nurse said, “You’ll hurting anywhere besides where mama stabbed you?!” The doctor said I saved their lives and I cried.
Grandshe had her Omaha book club come to Des Moines for a slumber party. There were 10 friends that made the road trip. We swapped homes with Grandshe so she could accommodate all her gal pals. We had so much fun vacationing at Grandshe’s place! Josie said, “if anyone asks…tell them we are renting the place for the weekend.” So then we started calling it our VRBO or cottage rental.
It was fun to snuggle in closer corners and watch Saturday morning cartoons. We are in such a habit of watching Netflix or computer time, it was a nice change. And for us all to cozy up on one couch (or around the chair below) made this mama happy!
While we were in Chicago for Hamilton, the kids had some fun with Grandshe. Here are a couple of stories:
- Grandshe took Will and Josie to their first thrift store while Ben was in dance class. As they entered the thrift store, Will asked very innocently, “Will Macklemore be in there?”
- Grandshe said a naughty word so Ben decided he should sneak on her phone and text me to tattle-tell on her. Instead of texting me, he texted the last person Grandshe had texted, which was her apartment complex manager. When Ben realized it, he felt so bad. Ben started crying. Will did too. They both thought Grandshe would be kicked out of her apartment complex.
- All three kids had a ton of fun being spoiled rotten.
The first month of the year is almost over, so I figured it was time to do a little recap:
- This is the first year the we all wrote out our resolutions and predictions for the year ahead. We put them in a jar and plan to open January 1st, 2018.
- We had a ping pong tournament with some friends, because we lost I am anxious for a rematch.
- We practiced using an Epi-Pen with the kids. Since they are going in different directions and are older, we figured it was time to go over what’s in the eli-pen bag.
- The boys got new “soccer” haircuts and look like little men.
- We played on the frozen pond for the first time since living here.
- We honored MLK by reading the whole “Who was Martin Luther King” book on our day off from school.
- We are still in love with Hamilton in this house. Bill and I got to go to the show in Chicago. It was a quick weekend, but we had a BLAST. Great to spend time with friends, my brothers, and watch Hamilton….which the kids and I listen to almost nightly while prepping dinner and doing homework.
- The kids got to be in a short clip about the Playhouse. They loved sharing their love for the theatre.
- And probably the BIGGEST news of the month… The boys passed their pecan challenge! We went to Bubba to celebrate and had pecan pie for dessert.
The boys discovered Looney Tunes right before Halloween. They started watching them on YouTube and fell in love with the cartoon characters just like we did as kids.
They decided to be Looney Tunes for Halloween. I was so excited they came up with a theme! BUT Looney Tunes aren’t exactly popular now so I had to create their costumes….I think they turned out well.
Josie wanted to be Chewy from StarWars. While I would have loved her to match the boys, she came up with her idea long before the boys. PLUS her costume involved buying a talking mask (totally have gotten our moneys worth on that) and hooded pajamas from Target, score!
This year, we were at the Syverson’s for trick-or-treating. For the first time ever, the girls (Quinn and Jos) stayed out longer than the boys and hit up a few extra houses.
Grandshe was addicted to the Hamilton soundtrack. She played it so often for the kids, they started rapping and singing along. We listened to it when we would do chores or homework. One day, Will’s obsession with Hamilton has went a little overboard….he bawled and said he didn’t know that “add to cart” on Amazon meant buy it. It took everything in me not to bust out laughing.
He ordered about $100 in stuff (no longer laughing) and the only thing we could return was the Bobble head. If anyone needs a custom made Hamilton backpack, a George Washington costume, or a minted Hamilton $2 bill…please let me know!