Saturday, July 1, 2017

Beach Time

Our local beach opened a swimming area for the first time in many years and since we can drive there in about 5 minutes, we plan to take advantage of it through the summer. The swimming area is small, and rather shallow. But if nothing else it is a chance to cool off and get the middle kids reacquainted with water skills.

We slipped down there Friday night after some storm clouds had passed and basically had the area to ourselves. The kids had fun wading around with Josh and playing in the sand. Hazel and I went on a nice walk along the lake. A pleasant way to spend the evening.

After our fun at the lake, we came home and made some oven style s'mores. It seemed like a perfect way to use our most recent attempt at GF graham crackers. They were winners!

Thursday, June 29, 2017

New Favorite

This girl loves when I put some frozen peas on her tray.
Good practice for feeding herself.
And feels good on the gums while her 4 top teeth are coming in.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Saturday Adventures

We decided to get out exploring. We are lucky to have a bunch of state parks within 45 minutes of where we live, so when I saw a scheduled tour about the unique geological potholes and rocks at Interstate State Park this weekend it became our excuse to head up there. 

The drive was beautiful through a few small towns on our way up the St. Croix River. At Interstate State Park, we drove through the campgrounds to get a lay of the land (for possible return trips), ate some lunch, and then met at the small visitors center for our guide.

 Listening to our guide talk about lava flows and why we have them in Minnesota.

Feeling for holes left from escaping air bubbles.

Looking down into one of the many potholes near the entrance to the park.

Stopping to take in the view of the St. Croix River.

 Happy to be along for the ride.

 Looking up from the bottom of a pothole.

Sneaking through a large crack in the rocks.

On our way back home, we passed William O'Brien State Park. On a drive through the campground, we found that they had some archery set up for those 8 and older. Sadie and Graham were disappointed, to say the least, that they couldn't participate but Josh took them into town for treats while Clara and I had some fun. After running us through some basic safety, we stood up to the line to try our hand at some targets. We were lucky that it was a small crowd and we never had to wait more than 5 minutes to shoot again.

 It was fun to watch her do something completely new. 

 And she loved it!

Her shots from one of the rounds. Looking happy and proud!

It turned out to be a very fun Saturday together.

Old Friends

This week we pulled out some of the toy and craft boxes that have stayed quiet on the higher closet shelves for too long. Graham played with his baseball buddies. The girls spent hours creating with perler beads. Fairy dolls and My Little Ponies were rediscovered and the kids soon had them lined up at the bathroom beauty parlor. Bunchems were shared with little brother so he could make his own creatures. It was great to see them find hours of fun with old friends.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Strawberry Season

I love that we have big strawberry fields just 5 minutes away. 
So when the season know where to find us.

Friday, June 16, 2017

First Week of Summer

We managed to fit a lot of fun and activities in this week between nap times and errands.

Minnehaha Falls
Since we had been here before, we were better prepared with swimsuits, towels, and snacks.

 The kids had fun wading around in the calm area downstream from the falls.

 Even Hazel dipped her toes in...although she wasn't too convinced about the cold water.

 I had heard that you have to eat at the fish place in the park.
So despite the really long line, we ordered a variety of things to try.
Graham was most interested in the calamari...

And ended up loving them.

 The tacos were really good, too!

Keeping Hazel entertained.

Turtle Friends
Graham was excited when he saw our latest neighborhood creature just walking through the yard. The kids even took a piece of watermelon out to see if it would eat it.

Tamarack Play Area

 We didn't stay for too long since rain clouds started to roll in,
but it was a fun break in the afternoon.

Summer Soccer
Josh is coaching the girls soccer teams again.
Sadie was excited to have some familiar faces on her team from last fall.

Clara found out that one of her best friends from school was on her team.
It didn't take long to find them talking to each other like this.

 Library Summer Program
 We made our way down to Roseville to watch a library program about raptors.
Graham got super excited when she brought out the peregrine falcon.

Plus, the kids got started on their summer reading program, 
which will let them earn a state fair ticket by completing some activities at home.

 Waffles were a pretty popular addition to Hazel's eating options.

Fairy Garden
Clara, Sadie and Graham have all been working to build fairy homes. 
We will have to see if they get any visitors.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Last month of school

Oh boy, we have been busy this last month of school. 

 I visited Clara's class for a special Mother's Day brunch.
The cute kids had decorated tables and prepared snacks for us to enjoy together.
They also had written poems, jokes, and skits to share.

One of Clara's last art projects to come home.

And the BIG end of year project.
Clara's class put on a Living History Museum for families and friends. 
Clara decided to research about Clara Barton, 
Civil War nurse and founder of the American Red Cross.

Both girls took part in the school running club again.
Graham loves to join in, especially on the day they get their hair colored.

My favorite writing projects are the ones that are all about being creative.
Sadie decided that the tooth fairy uses the teeth for making a big diamond, a bed, or a house.

Sadie had to make a poem using words that describe her.
Surprising, Amazing, Dog, Interesting, and Irresistible.
Possibly my favorite thing from the whole year.
She was right on target.

The Last Day of School
Mrs. Stonehouse

Mrs. Kovacs
Clara enjoyed moving between the two classrooms in her Explorations program for math and reading time. She went on field trips to the Creativity Festival, the Wargo Nature Center to learn about MN history, University of Minnesota Physics demonstration, various cultural performances, Tamarack Nature Center to learn about bugs and even more. She did big research projects about people and places, and also mini classes about knitting, electrical circuits, balloon rockets, and virtual reality.

Mrs. Dargay
Sadie really hit her stride with reading this year, and it is so fun to find her squirreled away with a book. She also still loves to write. I find little notes and lists all around the house. Math is one of her favorites, too. She loved getting an extra math class each week with a few of her classroom friends. Some of her fun field trips were to the Pine Tree Apple Orchard to taste apples and pick pumpkins, the local fire station to learn about safety, and Como Zoo.

Both girls had a great year with their teachers and friends.
Now we are all ready for some summer fun!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Fathers and Sons Campout

Josh took Graham on the annual Fathers and Sons Campout for the stake. They set up camp and then did some fishing. Luckily, the heavy rainstorm that we got at home missed them, so they stayed dry. A little football in the morning and then they headed home. Tired but happy.