"The purpose of life, after all, is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experiences." - Eleanor Roosevelt

Wednesday, May 30, 2012


The sandbox has been filled.... thank goodness...

Tuesday, May 29, 2012


After a morning full of "owies" Conner and Ben concluded that the safest thing to do this afternoon was just to sit outside for a while!  Conner was the one with the most scrapes and bruises and he really enjoyed just sitting in his chair for a while (outside, of course... everything has to be done outside now...) 

After a while, it was time to go in so Mom could start dinner.  Conner opted for the Ipad which seems to be the only inside activity that either one of them will settle for now!  Ben tried out my newest Pinterest creation... the parking lot game.  He thought it was pretty cool so maybe we are up to 2 inside activities that they will tolerate now!

Monday, May 28, 2012

"Arg, Matey!"

We started our first full week of summer vacation playing outside (of course) and then moved the party inside so we could make some pirate hats and swords.  Ben and Conner had a pretty great time marching around the house calling each other "Matey!"

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Birthdays in Charles City!

We made a quick trip over to Charles City this weekend to celebrate our nieces' birthdays!  I forgot our camera though so I only snapped a few on our Ipad.  It was fun to see all the kids together and they are so excited that we will all be going on vacation together in less than 2 weeks!  The kids had fun with the bouncy house and riding bikes!  Happy birthday Jennifer and Mikayla!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

"Graduation" Day 2012!

Conner and Ben were ready for graduation this morning as I knew they would be!  I think they were just excited to be singing and they didn't really realize that after today, there would be no school for the summer!  It was so hard to decide what pictures and videos to put on here today (I have lots and lots more!)  Many of the videos were too long to put on here so we will have to share those when we see everyone.  We had an awesome morning and I still can't believe that school is out and my guys will be turning 5 this summer.  Time keeps on flying by...

The classes sang about 5 songs after they received their picture DVDs and hugs from their teachers!

I put this one in here so you could see Conner reach up and push the button on the wall which subsequently lowered a white screen which got almost down to the kids' heads before one of the teachers pushed the button again to raise it back up!  That's our ConMan....

Ben and Miss Amy...

Conner and Miss Cyndi...

The boys will certainly miss their teachers and associates!  Their teachers have told me that they want to take the boys to the pool this summer.  They are two amazing women!  After graduation and singing, it was time for some cookies and punch!  Then... it was time to go... as I said before, I don't think they were ready for it to be over and they were sad for a bit when we left the school building, especially Ben... he kept asking to go back...

Summer is officially here!  I joke about what a challenge it might be with my two little guys all summer, but I wouldn't have it any other way!  We are going to have so much fun!  We won't be rushing around to get ourselves together in the morning.  We can (hopefully) just take it easy and slow our pace so we can enjoy every summer day that we have!  I see lots of sprinkler days, park outings, and soccer in the backyard in our future!

It struck me today, watching them, how much they have grown up in this past year...

Conner... you rarely let us get away with telling you to do something without questioning us!  You continue to be so curious about everything and everyone and you rarely let someone pass you in the hallway without telling them hello!  You amaze us with your intelligence and your ability to notice all the little things!  You have, however, developed a bit of a potty mouth so we will need to work on that!  I love that you are still so caring and loving toward everyone!  And, I even love that you continue to be quite the "stinker" at times... like today, when you lowered the screen while everyone was singing!  You definitely let us know how you are feeling all the time!  People always tell me how cute and sweet you are! I am so proud of everything that you have accomplished this past year.  You are really sticking to your rock star image and I love that.  You make me laugh and I just love you so much! 

My Ben... you continue to be our fearless little daredevil!  You have grown into such a caring 4 year old and people often tell me how great of a helper you are.  You love to make people feel better when they are sad and I hope you hold on to that skill as you grow!  You take such pride in your accomplishments now and I can see how much it means to you to impress your mom and dad!  I adore watching you play outside because you have this look of freedom on your face that cannot be duplicated.  You are in your element there and you definitely don't let too many days go by without a newly skinned knee or elbow.  You continue to go 100 miles a minute... maybe this summer we can work on slowing down a bit?!  Life will never be dull for you!  Watching you today, belting out your songs, I was so proud of you! You have accomplished so much this past year.  I love you so much! 

The boys will be doing another year of preschool next year, since they have those July birthdays.  And then on to kindergarten after that....  I am not even going to think about that yet... 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Last Day!!!

Today was the last day of preschool for the year!  Ben and Conner had a great last day and they are very excited about being able to sing their songs at their graduation tomorrow!

Conner ended the evening coated in mud so Dad had to hose him down!  Can't wait for tomorrow!!!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012


Conner and Ben had an "Olympic" day at school today!  They were both very excited.  When I went to pick them up, they immediately showed me the medals they had received!  Ben keeps singing to himself, "Oh yeah, I have a golden medal, Oh yeah!!!"  It was a very fun way to end the school year.  Tomorrow is their last day of preschool and then they have a little celebration on Thursday when they will all "graduate!" 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Thanks Mama and Papa!

Nick and I had the weekend to ourselves, courtesy of Mama and Papa!  We had a great time being able to spend some time together and even spend a little time by ourselves too!  The boys had a blast and were very tired out!  They went to bed early on Sunday, slept til 7 on Monday morning (miracle), and even took an almost 3 hour nap on Monday afternoon.  Thank you so much Mama and Papa for taking the boys this weekend!  They truly had a wonderful time and are still talking about how much they love Grandma's house and Papa's motorcyle!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


Well, we got our new Ipad the other night and so far the only problem we have had with it, is that the four of us want to use it at the same time!  Conner LOVES the Ipad and asks to play with it constantly...  here Conner takes his turn with the Ipad while Ben plays their favorite game on my Nook Color...  (Ben was patiently waiting for his turn with the Ipad...)

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Camera Fun...

Waiting for Mom to make lunch sometimes can be awfully hard, so the boys decided they wanted to take turns with my camera...  Ben took some pictures of me and Conner.  This was the best one...

Then it was Conner's turn with the camera...  this was the only one where he managed to get both me and Ben in the frame!

Okay, my turn... the boys were both feeling very photogenic today...They took turns sitting on each other's laps!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Not Possible...

8 more days of preschool until summer vacation....  doesn't seem possible!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mothers Day!

We had a wonderful mother's day!  Nick kept the boys busy and happy outside for most of the day and I was able to join them for a while, do a little shopping, and even had some quiet time to myself.  Perfect... 

A little riding through the sprinkler to end the evening...  Happy Mother's Day to everyone!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Fire Station!

Today, Ben and Conner's preschool classes got to take a field trip to the fire station!  They were both really good there, considering how excited they were!  All they really cared about was being able to climb up in the truck!

They both enjoyed seeing the fireman get all of his gear on!

And then, of course, the bus ride was very fun too!  They had a great trip and I always love it when I can be a part of their school day, too, so it was an action packed morning!  They are definitely ready for a nap this afternoon!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The TV Has Arrived....

Whew.. what a day... we packed a lot into our Wednesday today!  Took kids to school, dropped car off at mechanic, raced to Menards to look at some retaining wall bricks, and went to Best Buy to do some serious shopping.  The first item on our list was an Ipad...  we have decided to get one, we just didn't know what one we wanted, so after some discussion, we let the salesperson know which one we wanted.  Off he went to go get it, but he returned with nothing, saying that they were out of the one that we wanted.  Grr...  Okay, we'll have to get that some other time.  The next thing on our list was a TV for the basement.  Nick and I have been going back and forth for a while about what kind to get (basically how big of one to get!)  We had seen one in the ad that we pretty much agreed on.  Nick likes to say that we compromised, but I think it was more of me just getting tired of hearing him whine, so I caved and he got the big TV that he wanted!  Anyway, in looking at the TVs, we realized that the one we wanted wasn't on display and I could just see that Nick might actually start throwing a fit... he confirmed this for me a minute later when he told me that if they didn't have it, he was going to throw himself on the floor and start pounding his fists into the ground...  Luckily, this time, after talking with the salesman, he returned with the TV that Nick wanted.  So, we loaded the TV up, went to pick up the car, and headed to school to get our kiddos.  Out to lunch and then back to school for two IEP meetings.  Home a little before 3, hoping the boys would lay down for an hour, but they are starting to build a house across the street from us and it was pretty noisy.  Ben informed me that boys can't sleep when it's noisy, so we opted for "quiet time" while we watched the Winnie the Pooh movie.

Nick told me he had some shopping to do, so he took off for a while and then returned ready to hook up his fabulous TV.  Unfortunately, after hooking everything up, our cable box still wasn't working so he spent some time on the phone with Mediacom... they decided it was a faulty box, so Nick raced over to the Mediacom office (arriving 5 minutes before they closed) and got a new box.  Then when he got that all hooked up, we finally sat down and enjoyed the new TV!  Nick is a pretty happy guy today!!!

Now we can start organizing the basement better and spending more time down there!  The little boys were pretty impressed with the new TV, but by the end of the day they were so tired... they went down without a fight... 


Monday, May 7, 2012

Grape Snatchers...

With no school today, that meant that Ben and Conner got to go shopping at Dad's store with Mom.  When we got home, they "helped" me put the groceries away.  I finished washing the grapes I bought and left them in a bowl in the sink while I went to load some laundry into the washing machine.  When I came back, this is what I found...

Grape snatchers....  they are getting to be really sneaky resourceful!

Saturday, May 5, 2012


We got to surprise my mom this weekend with a secret trip to Bettendorf to attend a retirement party that her school was having for her.  She was definitely surprised to see us on Friday afternoon and we were very happy to be there to help her celebrate!  Can't wait to celebrate more this summer with Nana and Gramps!  The party was great, despite the heightened activity level of my two precious boys....  The boys loved the cake with Nana's picture on it.  The previously mentioned boys kept me pretty busy during the party so I didn't get a chance to take more photos....

On Saturday, the kids enjoyed a walk with Nana and Gramps and they even talked Gramps into letting them play in his car...  I think my sons and niece love it almost as much as I do...  All in all, it was great to be able to go to Nana's party and spend some time with Nana, Gramps, Cari, Marley, Josh, and Jenn!