Monday, June 29, 2009

The Finns Fly Away: for Sari

And look at the nice job they did! Ah, this is for their mom, Sari, who will be pleased with their effort. It was hard to see them go, but I acted like a cool nordic woman and just sent them on their way. We all agreed, however, that Schwartz hugs a little better than when he first arrived. Brother Benni gets a passing grade on the hugs, and Blueberry sure liked his lap, or maybe it was the snacks he so willingly shared?

The Finns are Leaving

2 fewer biggies in the house as Schwartz and his brother are heading back to their homeland today. It's been a great year with Schwartz, and a great month with his brother 'in house' too. One thing I can always count on is change - and so the family circle changes again - we are grateful for our Finnish family.

This is our last impression of the guys - and I'm afraid to go and look down in the lair. Biggies - they do it all last minute (I hear the vacuum as I type, although take-off is in 20 minutes). I'll open the window and let it all air out down there before I try to tackle the lingering effect.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Site #29

We ditched site #29 tonight just as a big thunderstorm rolled into camp. We tossed everything we had into the back of the boat, covered it up, and made the short drive home to hot showers and a mosquito-less evening followed by what is going to be sweet sleep on a surface that doesn't feel like sleeping on cement. Um...what is the attraction to camping anyway? (Thinking......) Ah yes, the pictures tell the story of why camp at site #29 on a hot, humid, buggy, and rainy weekend: First, we had the super pleasure of camping with great families. The pancake breakfast was awesome. The park had a nice cool breeze and the kids mastered all of the slides and climbers. Waffles and Songbird made the perfect fire, assisted by Blueberry. Mr. Silly Pants took all of the wee ones out on the boat and delighted them with some first mate duties, including driving the boat. Clare brought her amazing potato salad to our campsite - with new potatoes fresh out of the garden. I'm hoping showing up with the good coffee and brewing it for the masses gets us solidly in the "cool club" and will include future invites for fun and frivolity. Plus, we really do have to salsa dance around the campfire! Next time, ok? Waffles looks a little worn out :-)

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Dig It!

Guess what showed up in our backyard this morning?
We live on a park; just over the rise of our backyard is a volleyball court. It is a court in a bit of disrepair and we consider it our personal sand box. This morning the "park guys" showed up in all their glory, with kindness to spare, and went to work redigging and refilling the sand in the court. They did a marvelous job. And, they beeped their horns and stopped their machines to give Blueberry a good and close look. How midwest marvelous is that?

Yes it was 8 a.m. - Blueberry was still in p.j.'s and it
happened to be Daddy's day off, so Blueberry
got to explore in the arms of his main guy!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

His Day

A first for both of my beloveds. This Father's day weekend also involved Blueberry's first ride out on our boat and his first run through the sprinkler. These are both Daddy's style. Obviously, Blueberry's too. My husband moved from a life in which he had given up hope for a child, to a life full of the beaming and bounding energy of his son. It's a match made for both of them - and for me. We are a family. Happy Father's Day, Mr. Silly Pants!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Sari - we're going to miss you.
UPDATE: We do miss you! It won't be 10 years again, I promise!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Saturday, June 13, 2009

2 Moms - 2 Graduates - And a Backyard BBQ

Twinkletoes graduated from HS today

Schwartz graduated from HS today, the company of his two moms
Siblings of Twinkletoes were in attendance - although littlest was home napping

And she was in the company of dear friends - friends for a lifetime

Schwartz had a silbing present; Benni, from Finland!
Friends joined us to celebrate - wiffle ball was the game of choice
and Songbird's boyfriend, MathMan, gave Blueberry some excellent tips on hitting a ball

and brother Waffles helped the little beautiful brown Blueberry hit with a big stick
...and I enjoyed the kindness and smiles of Clementine, who adores Twinkletoes
today was a happy day for our family
It has been a busy week - but a fruitful one - and fruity one, too

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Grandpa's "little dainty girl"

Grandpa made the 9 hour trek from Cleveland (rocks!) to our home and then 2 hours north, to retrieve his new retriever - Sophia. He calls her "my little dainty girl" and is happy and proud to be the new adult in her life. Sophia happens to be the dog mom of our dog, Herbie - although the connection in their DNA is hard to see. Sophia is sweet and obeys commands, Herbs is crazy and just on the edge of being sent to doggie boot camp!
Grandpa celebrates his 70th birthday with a new sweetheart, and I'm happy to say that he's got a certain spring to his step with the arrival of a new furry companion in his life. I have to admit, however, I thought about switching dogs, hoping he wouldn't discover he had been fooled before arriving home. Herbs could use some intensive one-on-one ; or maybe his mother could knock some better dog sense into him? It's hard to have a houseful and a dog with no "off" switch - and Sophia's visit served as a tough reminder that we have a TON of work to do with Herbs.
That said, he sure LOVES Blueberry and Blueberrry LOVES him right to the tip of his furry tail.

Friday, June 5, 2009


My oldest and my youngest consider this the best way to spend an afternoon. I didn't see them for hours...which was good, because I was cleaning the house for our June house guests from Finland. Schwartz's mom and brother are here - the calendar is FULL FULL FULL!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Lotion in Motion

My efforts to keep Blueberry's skin nice and soft are met with his efforts to make it a game of eat lotion, run away, and giggle. I go with it. Wouldn't you?

Monday, June 1, 2009

Waffles eats ... and eats .... and eats

Waffles keeps me laughing. He's got quite an appetite, as any 16 old boy should. We try to keep a pretty healthy kitchen, and most days Waffles enjoys our family food. But, because he lives in 2 homes, Waffles has the run of 2 stocked kitchens (he's here for 2 weeks, his dad's for 2 weeks and we live within walking distance from each other with an open and easy parenting arrangement). One thing we do know, our cupboards are not as rich in refined sugars as his dad's. I think the young men of our home wish it were a little different. In fact, Schwartz keeps quite a stash in his room to compensate for our lack of salty/sugary treats. Today I saw a chocolate chip cookie make its way up from his room.

Back to Waffles....He scoured the cabinets today and then declared he was going to visit his dad's house before soccer practice. This is what he reported, "I went to dad's where I ate 2 pop tarts, a bowl of coco crispies with soy milk, and I finished my snack with a chocolate granola bar that tastes like a chocolate candy bar that I dipped in tapioca pudding."

My counter attack for dinner included stuffed and baked portabella mushrooms, whole wheat pasta with butter and parmesan, organic grape tomatoes, finished off with a perfect organic pear. Do you think I successfully countered the junk food attack?

Now I'm feeling guilty. I might make a pan of brownies for the poor boys.