Monday, July 30, 2007 Michigan!

We left Minnesota on Sat. 7/7, headed to the cities to pick up my friend, Sue and her kids, then we were off. We only drove half way that day. We stopped in a little town, Merrill, WI to have lunch and bopped around town, looking in shops, and antiquing for about 1.5 hours. Then back on the road to Eagle River, WI, where it was Watermelon Days. We hung in town there for the afternoon, shopping, antiquing, and then headed to Brian's brothers house where we were staying the night.

It was a HOT weekend if you remember and we got there and left right away again to the lake. The kids swam with Uncle Jim and us girls chatted. Then it was back to their house for a cook out, hot dogs and brats, and to watch all the deer. WAY cool. You have to check out those pictures. They feed them regularly and they come right in while you sit out there. We saw bucks, does, and fawns, twins even! The kids thought it was pretty cool.

Jim & Bev's backyard See how close they are!
Everyone loves Brady!

The next day we headed out for our drive through the UP and across the Mackinac Bridge. We enjoyed the drive, stopping here and there. One place we stopped was at one of the National Forest areas where we had access to Lake Michigan. It was our first view and we decided it was a good place to stretch our legs.

Enjoying the waves!
Look at those waves! This is SO much fun!
Sydney & Lindsey at Lake Michigan

We stayed about an hour south in Boyne Falls at Boyne Mountain Resort where our timeshare is located. We went and got a few groceries and then I got the girls to bed, while Sue & the kids took a dip in the pool.
Girls in the pool! Syd, Linds, Selina & Carla

The next day we headed up to the pool in the morning for a swim. We spent a couple hours there and then back to the unit for lunch. Claudia and her kids arrived that afternoon and we had units together. They were in a one bedroom and we were in a two bedroom, all with full kitchen/living areas. It was nice because originally we weren't supposed to be together, but the resort worked it out. We went up to Petoskey to wander around, window shopped, ate ice cream, and then drove to a neighboring town, Bay Harbor, I think, where we looked for Petoskey stones and we found a bunch of them. The kids were having a ball. Then it was back to the resort and off to the pool!

Claudia's girls were quiet at first, Antonia too, but it didn't take long for Antonia to become friends with Madison & Bailey. By the end of the week, they were exchanging email addresses! Carla & Selina are quite quiet too, but on the first night, they came over and saw L & S playing their Leapsters, so they ran back to get theirs and there was a whole lotta sharing of games going on! After we got the girls to bed, Claudia, Sue and I stayed up for a late night of chatting and drinking wine! It was a lot of fun!

Here's some more water!The next day we spent at Deer Lake which is right on property. The kids swam and played in the sand. We went out for a paddle boat ride, just relaxed. Then back to our unit for lunch and later in the afternoon/evening, up to the pool again.
Look what I'm making mom!

More posing...

Wednesday, we spent the day on Mackinac Island. We were up and gone to catch the 11 a.m. ferry. Windy and rough waves, 4-6'. No sitting on top! It turned out to be a beautiful day though. Claudia and I and the four younger girls took a carriage ride/tour all over the island, while Antonia went with Sue and her kids on an hour & a half horse back ride. As part of our carriage tour, we visited the Wings of Mackinac, a Butterfly Conservatory. It was beautiful, all the butterflies and soft music. The girls saw one butterfly and exclaimed, "LOOK! A Blue Morpho butterfly, mom!"
We're on the ferry! Carla, Selina, Lindsey & Sydney
Fun at the Butterfly Garden DSC_0272

Afterwards, we met for shopping, fudge and the like. We all sat up top on the ferry on the way back, but several were in the "get very wet" seats, like Claudia and family and Bailey and Madison. The waves must not have been too bad and I wish someone would've gotten a picture, but Lindsey and Sydney fell asleep in mine and Sue's arms. They were OUT COLD! We carried them to the car after we got off the ferry and I did get pics then.

We went out to dinner that evening and played in the park at another neighboring town and then it was back to pack and such. The kids were tired and sad to be leaving and for the last two weeks, all I hear are questions about Carla & Selina and when can we go to their house.
All the kids posing for a picture...
Good-Bye Friends!

Whoa...there are people up there! View of Mackinac Bridge

Sue & I decided to drive straight through on the way home. It ended up taking about 12.5 hours. We drove through a LOT of rain and storms and many more stops with tired kids. You can tell we were heading home because we let the kids watch several movies on the way home and eat gobs of crappy snacks; on the way there, nada...healthy snacks and no movies. LOL!

Oh, and I almost forgot! We had some fresh Pasty's too! YUM YUM!

If you'd like to view ALL our vacation photos, please check out our Michigan 2007 Set over at Flickr.

So, how about your summer vacation? Tell me about it! Where did you go? Where are you going? I love hearing about travels!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Class Reunions. Fun? Or forget-about-'em?

This past weekeend we attended B's 30th high school class reunion. The invite came late (giving us only a seven-week notice) and we already had plans for the weekend, but we cancelled them. They didn't have a 25th, which we found out this past weekend why; apparently someone dropped the ball. So, we figured since another reunion may not happen for 10 more years, we should probably attend.

I'll admit that I was a teeny bit nervous this time. Being that I am #2 wife, this would only be the second reunion that I attended. I was present at the 20th and I do recall having a good time. But, boy, did I have to have my memory refreshed. I'm not quite sure why so many events escaped me, but I could barely recall that I golfed on that Saturday afternoon. I do remember the dress I wore that evening, but I can't believe that I don't remember the fact that a classmate fell onto a cake!

This year's event was set up about the same way, just a little more casual. A mixer of sorts at someone's home on Friday night, a golf outing on Saturday morning and afternoon, and then a dinner with music on Saturday night.

I thought about not attending the mixer figuring it may be a lot of solo classmates. I passed on the golf, well, because I haven't golfed in years. I did go on Friday night and it was fine. It was mostly classmates or classmates with spouses who also attended this high school, just graduated in different years, but again, I really enjoyed myself. I was able to get to know some people that would be there the following night and got to meet some others who wouldn't be there at all.

That evening, one friend of B's, the only one that I really knew, let us know that he wasn't going to be golfing either, but he had thought about coming along and riding along in the beer cart. I told him that I wasn't golfing either, but I wouldn't mind riding around in the cart all day, and HEY, I could be the photographer! Well, everyone thought that was a grand idea. We didn't get home until 2 a.m. that evening and the next morning I didn't think that M would show up to the golfing, so I didn't get ready, but just dropped B off at the course. Lo and behold there was M walking up to the clubhouse! I think he felt bad that I didn't think he'd come! He said he'd wait for me to go home and get ready, which I did, and once I got back, we tooled around all afternoon on the golf cart and I took pictures. It was LOADS of fun!

After the golfing was over, B and I went home to change and then headed back to the clubhouse for dinner and music. We checked in with the girls who were staying with B's parents; as we all were. They were having a ball! So off we went. The food was good and so was the conversation, and of course a few beers! They had a DJ and also Karaoke, which I don't do, but someone ended up there for a couple songs. Thankfully, the microphone wasn't working too well! The night ended with hugs goodbye and keep in touches.

The other reason that I was nervous about the reunion is that I had my 20th reunion two years ago and while I had a great time, B, not so much. Oh, it was all right at first, but then I ended being out too late and he was hanging out with another spouse and I really don't want to get into it all. Needless to say, we had a fight that night, and I felt really bad. The thing is, he and I are different, and even though I didn't know anyone at his reunion, I made the effort to talk to people about all sorts of things. Not that B doesn't do that, but not to the extent that I do. I guess I just feel that if you're going to attend the reunion where you don't know anyone, you have to accept the fact that you may be on your own a lot of the time (which I'm okay with and I guess maybe B, isn't?) or you just suck it up and put yourself out there.

So, what do you think? Should spouses come to the reunions where they don't know anyone? Do you feel like you need to stick by their side or is it okay to go off and talk to people? I know it's difficult to be in a situation where you don't know anyone and if I had to do my reunion over again, I would be a bit more considerate. I definately could do better.

I'm just glad that B didn't ditch me too much! ;)

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Rain...Rain...We need RAIN!

We are really trying to keep the grass green, but it's brown in spots. It has been HOT the past week. Today and the next week is supposed to be gorgeous though; 80*F and sunny! No rain in sight until next week!

The girls dug out their rain boots the other day and I thought, HEY! Maybe that will do the trick. If they wear their rain boots, maybe it will rain!
Hmmm...maybe if we wear our rain boots, it will rain! Lovin' the rain boots in July!

We were all goofing around outside, watering the grass, the flowers, etc. Oh, how I love the lazy summer evenings!
Who is that flower in my garden? Look mom, it's like water skiing!

Daylily Balloon flower

Let's see...what else has been going on this summer? Well, swimming lessons went pretty well for their first time. They are very hesitant in new situations, so all in all, I was quite pleased. We went every day for two weeks for 45 minutes. I was nervous about the large class (10 kids), but it was needless aprehension on my part. There were at least six instructors with the class every day! It was practically one on one. I also liked that they could be with a group and see the other kids jumping off the side and bobbing underwater. When they had them on the diving board either jumping or dropping them off it the first day, I thought, wow, they really get them used to things right away! Here's Sydney doing her "big arms":
Big arms!

Sydney and Lindsey going off the diving board:
Wheee!  I did it! She did it!

You can see all the pics in their Swimming Lessons set on Flickr. We thought it was so much fun that we signed up again. The are going August 6-17. YAY!

I'm still working on our pics from vacation to Michigan (Boyne, Mackinac Island). I took about 240 pics so it's taking me awhile to wade through them and delete the crap ones, the duplicate ones, etc. We had just so much fun! I can't wait to tell you about it!

Off to fill up the pool and make lunch...

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Okay...I know it's 10 days after the 4th, but...

here are some highlights of our day. We just got back from vacation yesterday (and I will have some trip pics of that up soon), so I didn't get a chance to share our 4th of July pics.

Our town has an annual fair that runs July 1-4. It actually started a day early this year. Too much stuff to fit in, I guess. B and I took them on Saturday to the midway and hit a few rides.
Dad and his girls enjoying the merry-go-round.

The girls loved the ferris wheel and went on it several times with Dad.
Way up high!

Sydney LOVES animalsSydney was ecstatic to be able to ride a pony!

And that evening we went to the Extreme Bullriding at the Grandstand. WAY COOL! L & S LOVED it! It lasted about 2.5 hours and they were captivated the entire time. I'm bummed that I didn't get any pics from there, but my SIL got one of the girls and I. My nephew participated in the Mutton Bustin' and he hung on the entire time. It was pretty fun to watch.

On Monday, July 2, Grandma Gloria took the grandkids (ours and my brothers) to the fair. They had a great time hanging with grandma and their cousins, as well as, great-aunt Sherri and cousin, Ryan. I heard that the mini-donuts were a hit and also, the BIG slide! But, alas, no pictures, as both grandma's forgot their cameras. What kind of grandma's do that? LOL! (I'm just kidding!)

On July 4th, we headed into town to watch the annual parade. They changed the route this year so we had to find new spots. It worked out well and we got a really nice shaded spot (it was 90*F!) sitting with grandma & grandpa and great-grandma Marcy. I love a parade...
Sydney & Lindsey What a FUN parade!

...and so do the girls!

After the parade, we headed over to Aunt Sherri's and Uncle Andy's for a little grilling and some swimming in the pool! It was a hot day, so it was nice to get a little cooled off.

All in all, it was a great day and weekend! You can see the slide show of all the pics on Flickr...HERE.

Thank you to all the men and women, past & present, who serve and defend our country. We are so very proud of and thankful for you!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

And to the doctor we go...

No, not the girls, but me. I had an appointment with the podiatrist today. I've been dealing with plantar fasciitis for too long now. It's always bothered me a little, but usually with a quick stretch in the morning, I'm fine. Then, back in March, when I was down at Mayo for some tests on a couple different days, something happened to my right foot. I mean, I FELT it, and I could hardly step on it after that. It got a little better, then I went to my chiropractor for awhile and that's been helping, but thought that I should have a podiatrist check it out too. So, now I have it taped up for a week, and then I'll go back. My chiropractor has already recommended that I get custom orthotics and the podiatrist alluded to that too. No more fun and funky sandals for me either. They are NO GOOD, support-wise, for your feet.

So far the taping has my foot feeling pretty good. I'm going to start back on the ibuprofen for the inflamation too. I sort of quit taking it because it has gotten better than it was. I'll keep you all posted. I tell's been hard to have this issue this summer. No fun walks with the girls, as I just can't walk that far. It's pretty much stunk!

Lindsey also had an appointment with the pediatric opthamalogist this past Tuesday. It has been nine weeks since we started patching her eye. It's gone really well, and she's been a trooper. Just in the past few days, we started getting a little resistance to wearing the patch. She is being treated for Amblyopia. She got glasses in January to see if that would correct her vision. She made a little progress after six weeks. Then we came back after another six weeks, and there wasn't much improvement and that is when we started patching.

This time, she has made some great improvement. Her right eye is 20/20. Her left eye was 20/40 before patching and now after patching it has improved to 20/25. We are going to continue to patch it for four hours a day for another eight weeks. Her doctor was quite pleased with her response. I am too!

I'll have another post soon. We sure had fun at the 92nd Annual Cannon Valley Fair and 4th of July parade. Here's a taste... Lindsey and Sydney patiently waiting for the parade to begin. It was HOT too! 90*F is too hot for me!
Waiting for the parade to start...
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