Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Sneak Peek of Family Photos...

Click on this link or go to Jac Senske's blog which is listed under the blogs I follow...

Of course I think my boys look adorable and everytime I see them in a picture together it just melts my heart (yes, even the ones where it looks like Blake has poor "little" Luke in a half nelson!). I haven't seen them all yet, but it looks like Jac did an awesome job considering Luke was feeling really rotten and Blake is still not a fan of getting his picture taken. Once I get them all back I'll share more...Enjoy!!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Congratulations Megan and Ramsey!

Last night we went to one of the most beautiful weddings ever. My dear friend Megan and her adoring fiance, Ramsey, were wed at St. Mary's Greek Orthodox Church by Lake Calhoun. It was such a beautiful and symbolic ceremony. The bride and groom do not speak at all during the ceremony and there are a handful of rituals that are all peformed 3 times. The reception was at the very classy and chic St. Paul Hotel. Megan looked absolutely stunning in a gorgeous lace gown and wore a vintage hair pin. The bridesmaid dresses were awesome (honestly...something each of the girls will wear again) and they carried white and green hydrangeas. I wish I would have got better/more pictures, but I was too caught up in the moment. The food was delicious, the music was dance worthy (as I told Blake..."Mommy wore her party shoes"), and the scenery was enchanting. Our centerpiece was this really cool antique votive holder. I especially loved how they served cupcakes instead of a the traditional cake! Everything was just wonderful and it was so much fun to spend an evening with our friends. We wish Megan and Ramsey all the love and happiness in the world and were so glad we could share their special day with them!

Heidi and I (she was Megan and my Senior Buyer)
Heidi and Todd

Our friends, Mindy & Jerod

Chloe's 3rd Birthday

Last Saturday, Blake and I went to Chloe's 3rd "Bikin' Birthday" Party. Blake got to test out his new bicycle during the bike parade through her neighborhood. The kids all got to decorate their bikes and then two Maple Grove Police Officers came by to talk to us about bike safety. The really nice Policemen then proceeded to lead our parade...even using their lights and horn from time to time. Blake did such a good job on his big boy bike. I barely helped him. He can steer, brake and pedal really well. After the bike parade we had ladybug cupcakes and played with our friends for a bit. Chloe had a really fun day and we thank her for inviting us to be a part of her special day!

Happy 8th Birthday Molly!

Happy 8th Birthday Molly! Our sweet little companion turned 8 about wondering where the time has gone! How has 8 years already past? Blake woke up yesterday and sang Happy Birthday to was really cute. He asked her if she wanted cake.

There is so much I could say about "May-May" as we call her. She has been the best little friend to us and has taught us so much about loving all things in the world. I can still remember the night we adopted her and she was this tiny little puffball. When we took her home and gave her a bath she turned into a wet chipmunk! There was nothing to her! I think she weighed 2 lbs, 8oz or something crazy like that. She has always had a little bit of a wild side and will get this crazy running streak that is hysterical to watch because her legs just flail all over the place. Blake and Luke love getting her riled up so she will run. She still lays on the floor with all limbs sprawled out like she's a bear rug or something. I love the way she tilts her head at you when you ask her a question...sort of like she is contemplating her answer. She's such a good little dog, and I have to believe loves her little doggie life. We are so thankful for her and hope that there are many MANY birthdays yet to celebrate!

Friday, July 24, 2009

We're alive...

Sorry, it's just been a really crazy couple of weeks! But we are all alive and kickin'! Luke had a stomach bug for about 5 days which provided more yuk than I could have ever imagined. We had our annual family pictures done one day...also a day of which Luke was sick, so not sure how those are going to turn out. Blake and I went to Chloe's big 3rd birthday bash so I will posting pics of that soon. As well as the boys' new second cousin Ainsley arrived! She's a cutie!

Life is pretty much status quo with our usual routine of busy, Busy, BUSY!! It's probably going to get a lot busier here in the next few months too. Kurt goes back to Mexico for work next month and I start a new position at Target August 3rd. Yes, I know, I just started my current position a year ago, but they like to keep you moving there. I'm going back to the Buyer role, though this time I will be buying in Home versus Apparel & Accessories where I usually land. I'm excited about the new experience.

I promise to post pictures soon...I will hopefully have some good ones of our photo shoot, the birthday party and my dear friend Megan's wedding (it's tomorrow - yeah!!). Happy weekend!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

New Haircut = New Bike

We have apparently upped the anty in our house...Usually Blake gets the standard dum-dum sucker when he gets his haircut, but today, Kurt took Blake to get his haircut and he came home with a new, big boy bike! I'm sure next time I take him he will expect a pony or something! It's okay though, Kurt's been wanting to get him a big boy bike for a while and once he mastered his trike I figured it was a matter of time before one showed up in our garage. The first thing he wanted to do was move his horn from his trike to the new bike. He wouldn't ride it for me until that was done! I was actually quite surprised by how quickly he took to it. He can peddle, steer and brake already. I was very proud of him! And his new hair cut looks pretty sharp to boot!

I love this pic - The happy boy and his new bike! Could he be any more annoyed at me for taking his picture?

"Get the camera Mom!"

My son who cannot stand to have his picture taken, yelled to me "get the camera Mom" when he and Luke were riding on the firetruck tonight! Funny thing was, I was watching all of this thinking, "boy I'd sure like to take a picture, but I know Blake will freak out, so forget it!" Made my day!

Door County, Wisconsin Vacation

We spent the last week in Door County, Wisconsin (well known for their cherries) with my sister Jill, Ross, Maddie and Jacob. Let me start by saying, we couldn't have prayed for better weather than we got. It was absolutely beautiful every single day. We rented a little lake house in Sturgeon Bay that was right on Green Bay and had amazing views and an awesome backyard for the kids to play in. The Hooten's rented a cottage in Gills Rock with a yard that was also great for tee ball, kick ball and croquet! We had so much fun playing, grilling, shopping, and just being tourists! The boys (sans Luke) were constantly playing something...there were some very heated games of kickball (with a giant Target beach ball). Jacob, Maddie and Blake also enjoyed looking for rocks and shells in the water. There was even a much anticipated tennis match between Uncle Kurt and Jacob.

I can't begin to recount the number of times Blake said the name "Jacob" this past week. Let's put it this way, he was hoarse by the end of the week! He looks up to Jacob so much and it is just precious to see the love and adoration that Blake has for Jacob. Every time we are together Jacob is such a good sport and tolerates so much! I'm sure his idea of a relaxing vacation isn't having your 3 year old cousin follow your every step and bark orders at you! Thank you Jacob - we love you!! And boy how nice it was to have so many extra sets of hands with Luke! Mommy's back thanks you! Maddie (who by the way is as tall as me) toted Little Luke around all week! Uncle Ross and Aunt Jill got their fair share of Lukey time too! The Jarrett family definitely felt spoiled and were sad to leave on Friday. We already look forward to seeing you all again!!

There were too many pictures to include in the blog so I attached a link to some of the pictures we took. I am anxiously awaiting some of the pictures that Jill and Maddie took!

Here's a quick narrative on our trip:

Day 1 (July 3rd) - We arrived in Sturgeon Bay and had a nice dinner at the Inn at Cedar Crossing and then took a carriage ride. A first for all of us. The horse's name was Keith. I thought that was pretty funny...such a normal name for a horse!

Day 2 - We hit the Bailey's Harbor 4th of July parade. Wow! This parade was about an 1 1/2 hours long and a steady stream of "floats." I've never seen anything like it! Before the parade started, Kurt told Blake that if you wave at the people they give you candy. Once the parade started, I thought Blake's arm was going to come off his little body he was waving so hard! It worked...he got a ton of candy!

Day 3 - Birthday Party! The boys had so much fun opening some presents, playing puzzles with Maddie and Jacob and of course eating cake! We spent the morning hitting up a few local wineries. At one winery (Simon Creek Vineyard - very good) they had a man playing music on their patio so we got a glass of wine and enjoyed that for a while. Blake kept asking if "Bob" could play the chicken dance song. He was a little confused, as the last one man band he saw was "Beachcomber Bob" from his Step by Step School picnic!

Day 4 - Chicago Fireboat ride. This was a really cool old Chicago fireboat that they now use to do boat tours up and down Green Bay. Our tour was 2 1/2 hours (which went a lot faster than you would think with 2 little kids) and we saw a couple of lighthouses and quite a few old ships that have retired to Sturgeon Bay. The ride was pretty uneventful until about 3/4 of the way through when Luke decided to puke all over himself and poor Maddie. She actually still wanted to hold him after that! We also had a little bit of a firedrill in the morning...Mommy packed Blake's nebulizer, but forget his after a long couple of nights of Blake not breathing (or sleeping) well we were able to get a prescription called into a local Walgreens and all was good.

Day 5 - Gills Rock. We spent the day on the North end of Door County hanging out at my sister's cottage. We played croquet - I even won a game! Then we went to Newport Beach. The water was too chilly for much action, but the kids had fun playing in the sand. Jacob and Blake buried their legs which Blake thought was hysterical. The funniest moment came when Blake decided he didn't want to wear his wet shorts anymore and just dropped them! I took a picture of the full moon at midday!

Day 6 - Pirates Cove Putt Putt day! Blake got to play putt putt for the first time. He sort of lost interest pretty quick, but then decided it was more fun to chase Mommy and Daddy's balls after we hit them once. We quit keeping score after about 3 holes! After that we had lunch at this really old Burger and Ice Cream place called Wilson's in Ephraim. Then the girls went shopping and the guys went and hung out at our place.

Day 7 - Breakfast at the Country Bumpkin! We had breakfast in a big red barn! Blake thought that was pretty cool. Then we packed and hung out at our place the rest of the day.

That was our trip! A ton of fun and definitely somewhere we would recommend for anyone looking for an easy, laid back vacation! Thanks again Hooten family for sharing the fun with us!

Birthday Party Fun

Luke was lucky enough to celebrate his birthday twice this week! The first time was during our vacation to Door County with my sister, Jill, and her family. Luke got a HUGE corner piece of the cake all to himself and dove in. He wasn't sure what to do for about a half second and then he quickly figured it out. Clearly he enjoyed the frosting most, but I do believe a little of the yummy chocolate cake made it into his belly! Jacob and Maddie had a good time too and were a big help keeping the mess under control! Blake also got to open a few more presents from Mommy and Daddy and both boys got some new jammies from the Hootens!

"Do I have to open the card first?"

"Which one is mine??"
"I said cell phone Mom, not Fisher Price phone"

"It's for you Maddie!"

Yesterday, we were invited to watch fireworks and play at the Lamothe house, so we decided to take a little cake and have some birthday action there as well. He even got to wear a "party hat"...he was the pirate! Luke got to play with the big kids (Blake, Chloe and Jonny), watch fireworks, and eat more cake of course! We couldn't believe how good Luke was yesterday considering he only took about a 1/2 hour morning nap and then decided to stay up till 10:05 so he could see the first few fireworks! Blake even got to try sparklers for the first time. He had a little lesson in safety, when he got an owie from touching the tip after it had extinguished though!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Happy 1st Birthday Luke!

It's official, our precious baby boy is a full year old. I'm pretty sure I wrote something about how fast time has gone every month, but it feels so much heavier today. Where did the time go? I've been going through pictures trying to pick my favorites (which is almost impossible for a Mommy to do when the subject matter is your child) and can't believe how much he has changed in a year and yet how much he still looks the same.

This little guy is an absolute blessing to have in our lives. He's got so much energy and is just DYING to use it. Changing his clothes or a diaper has become what I am sure could be an Olympic sport! He's still a pretty good napper and sleeps okay at night as long as he's not sick. He's slowly becoming bored with his ba-ba's and his favorite foods are avocado and Club crackers. I gave him some today before I used the rest to make guacomole and when his ran out he was MAD! He then proceeded to eat fistfuls of the guac!

He's got a handful of words now...Ma-Ma, Da-Da, Dog, May-May (what we call Molly sometimes), Hi, Ah-Oh and Na-Na (Banana). He's pretty funny, but still a little moody. He has never been a fan of riding in the car, but is liking riding frontwards a little better.

We had a few birthday celebrations this week. The first one was Sunday with my sister, Jill, and her family while we were all in Door County, Wisconsin for the week. He had a great time eating his cake all by himself. He ate mostly frosting, but I don't think he minded. Then today he had another mini-party at our friends the Lamothe's. We went to their house to play, have dinner and watch fireworks with Chloe and their other friend Jonny. The kids (including Mr. Birthday boy) stayed up to watch fireworks that didn't start until 10:00! Luke finally crashed at around 10:05! It was almost as if he was saying "I'll be darned if I'm going to miss a minute of this birthday!"

So, here we are, quickly moving from this baby phase to toddler-dom. I can't begin to articulate how much fun we've had this year and how much joy Luke has brought to our lives. From his little heckle to his belly laugh, from his brow furough to his smiling eyes, from his super long eyelashes to his crazy fast growing fingernails, from his perfect baby soft skin to his little birth mark that only Mommy knows about, from the smell of his clean baby hair to every stinky diaper...I love every little bit of this guy. You are so loved Luke William and your Daddy, Blake and I want to wish you the happiest birthday ever! We look forward to the rest of our life with you! Here are some of the favorite pictures I was able to narrow it down to...

My "little" 8 lb, 6 oz angel.

First Hug!

First Smiles!

5 weeks

10 weeks - look at that belly!

12 weeks - 1st day of school!

5 months

7 months - 1st 2 teeth arrived!

10 months

11 months - crazy hair

11 months - Mr. Independant!

Almost 1...