Friday, August 31, 2007


I've succumbed. Cash and I got McDonald's on the way home from playgroup the other day. I've never done that before. I feel like I just gave in to something. The big monster with golden arches. Am I a bad mom? It's probably just like the time I felt like I was giving in when I gave him the pacifier sooner than they had told me I could when I left the hospital. That turned out to be ok though. I guess that act alone won't confine my child to a fate of obesity and consumerism. Yet. The problem is - we both liked it. :)

We went to the grand opening of the nearest and only Costco in Wisconsin last night- about 25 miles away. The whole way there I could not figure out their strategy - not close enough to a big city, in my opinion, out in farm country (they grow their own stuff - why would they need Costco's produce on steroids?), stupid location, blah, blah, blah. Then we saw the parking lot. Apparently they're not having any problem getting business. Apparently I don't know what I'm talking about. Parking lot was filled to capacity, 400 people through the door every half an hour. It was madness. I sure enjoyed spending the first hour just getting all the millions of samples, though. Ryan wasn't as patient as I was to wait in long lines for a sample. But come on, they even had rootbeer floats!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Rain, rain, going away?

It was pretty soggy here last week. We didn't have any flooding in our area, but other counties here and all around the midwest have been a mess. Luckily we started our Blockbuster membership just in time and stayed in and watched movies most of the week. We did lose power one night, and Cash had to have a candlelit bath:

But, it cleared up for the weekend - just in time for a visit to Chicago, 90 minutes away.

(Well usually 90 minutes away - it was FOUR hours with traffic!!!) We have a few friends who live there, and we've really only passed through before, so we've been excited to explore. We had great food, beautiful weather, and good company, of course. We went to the Sears Tower, (the tallest building in the U.S).

We also went to Millenium Park, a really neat park with cool pieces of art work scattered throughout, such as this huge silver bean-like structure.

Us, with our friends, the Olivers

Closer up to the bean.
Ryan getting attacked.

They also have this big open water area with water spraying up that kids can play in. But then, on this brick wall there is a huge picture of a face, a different face every time, that will have subtle movements until finally the lips pucker up and the face sprays water. A little crazy, but pretty cool!

We also went to visit the Robie house, a Frank Lloyd Wright house:

And of course, we had to get a classic bath picture of Cash and Simon:
All in all, we really like Chicago. I sort of wish we lived there instead, since we're already getting bored of Milwaukee, but at least it's close so hopefully we can visit often! Anyway, we've got rain again now, but by the weekend it's supposed to be nice again. We'll keep our fingers crossed.

Friday, August 17, 2007


Well, this trip to Utah has had a lot of firsts for us:

- Cash blissfully had his first Jamba Juice, then hurled the cup in anger when it was all gone.

- My friend Brooke and I made strawberry jam. I never thought I would be a jam-maker or a canner or anything, ever. But after this, I may be hooked. Especially the low sugar kind we made. It actually tastes like strawberries, not candy.

- Cash ran through the sprinklers with his cousins. Ok, that's not entirely true. He got a little too wet and got really mad, so then we just had to turn on the hose with about 12 inches of water and then he thought it was great. The idea was there though.

- He did, however, go down a pretty big waterslide with Ryan. I was a bit apprehensive about it as some of the older cousins were afraid to go down it, but he did it. I'm glad that Ryan will be good at not letting our kids be wimpy. I was kind of a wimp.

- Cash slept until 10:30 in the morning - a full 14-hour night's sleep. Wow. I could get used to that.

- Cash finally made an animal noise - woof, woof (well, woo woo, really). This may sound boring to some, but I was relieved to know that 6 months of me making animal noises really wasn't just for my own entertainment. Ryan and I laughingly had to admit that Cash maybe isn't the brightest kid - at least compared to milestones of other friends his age, but we also know it doesn't matter at this age. It's just nice to know that he listens to something I say, since sometimes I'm not sure there's anything registering up there!

It was so fun to be around all the family. It will be hard entertaining him when we get back home. It was so cute watching him follow grandma around the house and all around the yard, trotting after her so he could help with the watering can.

And there were lots of fun times at the pool and with cousins:

And he probably had a little too much time getting spoiled by the aunts.

I guess I shouldn't talk though - I did make sure I got a massage - my new vacation must-have. And I got a pedicure. And I did some shopping. Oooh, better scratch all that before Ryan reads this.... Ok, but seriously I never do that stuff....

My mom also had her 50th year high school reunion. Congratulations on still being around! Just kidding, not only is she around, but we made sure she looked fabulous at all the events so everyone could see how well she took the last 50 years!

I did anxiously stay up until midnight one weekend night waiting for her to come home from her reunion though! I guess that could be another first!

Lastly, I finally realized a strange thing - I get more boogers in Utah. Is it true?? Somebody back me up on this one....

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Too much fun to slow down

Cash is having too much fun with all his cousins and aunts and uncles. I am having too much fun having him occupied by all his cousins and aunts and uncles. It's what I like to call a win-win-win situation. :)

Sunday, August 5, 2007

The Wisconsin State Fair - Everything you ever wanted, and more

So it was a bit bigger than the Payette County Fairs Ryan remembers from his years of cattle raising. And a bit less health-conscious than we'd ever noticed. At one point Ryan said something like, "Don't they have any vegetables or something?" Yes, they did, as I pointed out. "Dr. Vegetable" it was called, and it was a deep-fried version of any vegetable you could imagine. Even deep fried pickles. Next door to the place with deep fried oreos. But, guiltily, we must admit that pretty much our sole purpose for going to the fair was the fried cheese curds we heard so much about.

Native Wisconsiners were surprised to hear that we had never had fried cheese curds. One friend told us he pretty much grew up on them (yikes). Perhaps that's why Ryan complains about seeing so many overweight people in the hospital all the time here! Well, we can't say much, we had two orders of them. Plus brownies and their famous cream puffs, and pizza and lemonade..... Not to mention the fact that we went to a Brewers baseball game with the hospital the night before and they gave us $40 worth of food there so we had cheese fries, pizza, ice cream, etc. Needless to say I was feeling pretty sick by the end of the weekend.

We did get to see some good hog racing at the fair, and a team of lumberjills (female lumberjacks, or "chicks with axes" as they say). I don't know if anyone has seen log rolling competitions, but that was easily my favorite part of the fair. Two lumberjills facing opposite ways on a log in a big pool of water trying to roll the log and knock the other one off. Highly entertaining. Cash didn't like much but the cream puffs though.

I also learned this week that Ryan is better at blowing bubbles than me. Who knew you could be better or worse at that?

Cash and the neighbor boy enjoyed chasing them around while Ryan blew up a storm, polishing off a whole jar of bubbles.

We enjoyed more Ryan this week with his easier schedule, although he doesn't get this weekend and sleeping in thing yet. His first Saturday off, he got up early while Cash and I were still asleep and banged around the house for a few hours - preventing me from any further sleep. Hmm, maybe we should go back to the schedule where you work on the weekends and get out of the house! Hopefully he'll get used to it.
We're headed to Utah this week for some family time and will be there for a couple weeks. I hope. I'm flying standby, so we're really just hoping I make it there!