Monday, July 27, 2009

Land of Adventure

otherwise known as Adventureland. We made our what is becoming annual trip to Adventureland this past weekend with my parents, brother, uncle and cousins. We didn't tell Gabe we were going until he woke up Saturday morning and oh boy was he excited! He didn't want to eat breakfast and couldn't wait to go. He even got right in his car seat when we headed out to the car and for Gabe that is no small feat, usually he is all over the place before he finally settles in his seat. We met up with everyone at my parents house and borrowed their car to drive down in(we sold the Jeep this past week, yay but now only have the unairconditioned,brakes need to be looked at wagon) so decided their car was probably a more comfortable ride. We arrived and and immediatly started in on the rides. Ty was old enough this year to ride a few more rides and liked them once on but the standing in line thing was just tough for him. We started off with the carousel, the ferris wheel and then made our way over the bi-planes. After that Gabe wanted to drive the semi's so along with Daddy the boys got to try those out. Gabe and Carl went on the bumper cars and Gabe enjoyed himself once he figured out you were actually supposed to hit other cars:) We decided to try Gabe on the log ride this year as well, there was a nice line so while Carl and Gabe waited my mom and I took Ty for a diaper change and ro ride the little car carousel and then onto the boats. This little girl asked me if she could ride with Ty in his boat, I asked if she wanted to sit in the back and she politley said she wanted to sit next to Ty:) Luckily Ty was well behaved and didn't try to push her out of her seat. Gabe and Carl finally made it to their log and...well you can be the judge if you think he liked it or not:) The picture is one they take as you are going down the hill so this is a picture of the picture, for the full effect you are welcome to take a look at the lovely keep sake magnet we have of this picture anytime you visit. After the log ride Gabe wanted to try the Underground which Ty was still too short for so Daddy took him and we took Ty back to the bi-planes. Gabe was not impressed with the underground, a little too spooky for him still. We tamed it down a little after that and did the balloons and the ladybugs and then Carl and Gabe did a few other bigger rides. Finally we decided it was time to call it a day and head to the frog hopper which was Gabe's favorite and train. Ty was exhausted and fell asleep in Grandma's arms while waiting in line. He woke up once we were on and didn't go to sleep again until we put him to bed when we got home. After the train ride we tried to get a good family picture but with two tired boys this is what we got, typical. Overall we had a great time and Gabe is already asking when we are going back.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

It was just too nice not to do something outside yesterday so the boys and I headed to Reiman to once again take advantage of our family membership. I thought maybe they would lose interest since we have been there several times already this summer but Gabe was just as excited to go this time as he has been every other time. We took a snack with us and the boys loved just being outside. I let Gabe have the camera when we went in to see the butterflys so the following pictures are all photography by Gabe:)

Thursday, July 16, 2009

So I was Feeling Very Domestic...

I was feeling rather domestic the other day and got a wild hair to try and make raspberry jam. I had been wanting to head back to the berry farm and get some raspberries for awhile so I decided yesterday was as good of day as any. The only problem was I really didn't know how to make jam and I didn't have any of the stuff to do it so I called Andrea to see if she could help me out. They weren't busy so with a quick phone call to Steph to see if Ty could stay with her and Brenna while Gabe and I went to pick the raspberries we were off. I thought that not having Ty with would make things much easier, he tends to wander away and is just in general an ornery little guy so I thought picking would be a breeze. Not so much, my "helper" was not much help, in fact he did not like picking raspberries, he didn't like that were thistles in the rows, he didn't like anything and did not want to be there. Raspberry picking did not end up being the fun activity I had foreseen. It was also rather difficult to find the good raspberries, there were lots but a lot weren't ready yet and the rest were pretty picked over, we must have hit it right at the inbetween time. After finally getting one whole bucket full and part of another I asked Gabe to bring me the bucket to where we were down the row, he proceeds to spill the full bucket we had gotten, raspberries are quite difficult to pick up off the ground. Then we went a little further down the row and Gabe was running around and accidentally kicked the same bucket over a second time. By this time I had enough so we headed back a little short on what we needed. I decided I would get the rest at the store. We picked Ty up at Steph's and then went to Hy-Vee to get the rest of our supplies. Once we got to Andrea's she had the water bath going and after a quick lunch we got started. We put the raspberries in a big measuring cup and made sure the bugs and grass(thanks to the spilled bucket) were out of the berries. Then we added lemon juice to the berries and smooshed them. We also added a little sugar to some sure-gel and measured out 7 cups of sugar(anything tastes good with 7 cups of sugar, I am pretty sure) Then we put the berries on the stove and gradually added the sure-gel and then constantly stirred as it came to a boil, we then added the sugar and again stirred until it came to a boil. When it was done Andrea put it into jars for me(it needed 1/2 inch of space between the top jam and top of jar, she did much better at eyeing that then I would have) Then we put the lids and put them into the water bath. Once the jars had boiled for 10 minutes we took them out of the water bath and listened for the lids to pop. They did and we headed home after a great first jam making experience. We had a partial jar that we just put in the fridge last night and even though it hasn't quite been the recommended 24 hours yet Gabe was begging to try some out this morning at snack. I broke down and let him try it, I think he liked it:)

Friday, July 10, 2009

Wet and Wild

Friday afternoon we needed some good old outside time and since we can't go to the pool or splash park because of Ty's hand still being covered we decided to try out some water balloons in the back yard. Gabe "helped" me fill them up in the bathroom and squealed with delight if the water would spray out at all. When our bucket was full we headed outside to try them out. Both boys really liked them. Gabe would try out all kinds of different ways to get them to pop. Sometimes he squeezed them, sometimes he sat on them, sometimes he threw them on the ground. Ty just carried his around until he squeezed it hard enough to pop it or he dropped it on the ground. Gabe chased Ty with them a few times to try and get him more wet but he was never very successful at getting him with the balloon itself. After we ran out of balloons I had the boys pick up the pieces in the yard, Gabe was very good at finding lots of other things besides balloon pieces, like this lovely leaf. After we got the balloon pieces picked up we got out the hose. The boys had lots of fun running from the hose and having me try to get them. We also put the hose on the slide and let Gabe go down it. He went really fast and I was actually afraid he was going to hurt himself with how much he wiped out at the bottom. Ty loved the hose too and would nod his head yes every time I asked him if he wanted me to get him. He was not quite as brave as Gabe but he had fun too. We had to stop when the yard seemed to be getting somewhat muddy and the boys were beginning to resemble mud monsters. On a random note I tried to get a video of some of Ty's new words but was rather unsuccessful as he was soaking his burned hand and way more interested in the water at that point, but I thought his hi's were pretty cute anyway. Ty's hand is looking much better and I am hoping we will not have to cover it anymore after his Tuesday appointment. He is getting pretty good about the holding his hand just right when we soak, put ointment on and wrap it though.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Fun on the Fourth

but not so much fun on the third. Friday Carl and I took both boys to the Dr. Gabe had his 4 year well child visit and by Friday morning the burn on Ty's hand was looking kind of bad so we decided to see if we could get it looked at at the same time as Gabe's appointment. Luckily we could and thank goodness Carl had the day off and could help me with both the boys as it turned out to be a marathon appointment. First off the Dr. looked at Ty's hand and said that it was definately a bad burn especially on his palm and we needed to get the rest of the dead skin off and put some salve on it and keep it covered. Then he checked Gabe out. Gabe weighed in at 38 lbs. and was 39 1/2 inches tall, just a tiny bit over the 50th percentile for weight and just a tiny bit below the 5oth percentile for height so we have an average boy:) The dr. checked out the rest of Gabe and everything looked good until he had to have his 4 shots in the arm. He was not a happy camper and I think it was easier when he was a baby, he did not squirm and he wasn't naughty during them but he cried and kept telling the nurse, ow..I don't like that, stop, stop. It was sad at least when they are babies they can't talk. After his shots and he calmed down some we went to get his hearing test done(he passed with flying colors which proves to me the child most definately can hear, it is the listening part he has issues with...hmm I wonder where he gets that:) Then we had to go to the lab and do a finger prick for the lead and hemoglobin test, the lab tech was very good though and told Gabe to watch the red bubbles go into the tube while she was squeezing his finger, he liked that and hardly noticed it hurt. When we got back to the room Carl and Ty were just finishing up soaking his hand and the Dr. was removing the rest of his dead skin, Ty was not happy but really did a good job at holding still and letting them do what they needed to. The nurse came back in and put the cream on it and wrapped it up. We have been soaking, putting on cream and wrapping ever since. Here he is with his paw as we call it.he went back today and his fingers are looking much better but his palm is going to scar and we have to continue to wrap and put cream on it twice a day but we are down to only once a day soaking and rubbing that is good news. Two hours later we finally left the Dr.'s office and then went to Ice Age at the movie theater with my mom and dad. Ty did a pretty good job at the movie. The above pictures were my attempt at a cute Fourth of July picture with their flags, obviously that didn't work out so well but we had a good day anyway. Carl's mom and dad came down for the day and Andrea and the boys came as well(Alan was still gone at a conference but made it back in time for the fireworks.) We went bowling and ate pizza at lunch since it was still raining so Carl could show them the completed bowling alley. They then ran some errands while all the boys took much needed naps. That evening we grilled beef tenderloin and had sweet corn, watermelon and pasta salad. Carl's mom and dad left after that and the rest of us waited around for the fireworks. We walked down to the Hilton parking lot and sat up by the new Alumni Center and let the boys do sparklers. Gabe was a little unsure about them at first but then loved them and kept wanting to do them even after the fireworks started. Ty was not so sure about them and it was probably a good thing, he tends to touch things he shouldn't and we do not need two burned hands:) Clark and Ty created their own fun chasing each other around the lawn chairs, they didn't need sparklers anyway. It was nice to just walk back home after the fireworks and not have to deal with traffic. Overall we had a fun fourth!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Tower Park

Gabe has names for practically every park in town. Brookside is the fire engine park, Roosevelt Elementary playground is the castle park, Inis Grove is the fish park, Moore Park is Jared and Steph's park(because it is behind Jared and Steph's house) and our most recent discovery is Moore Memorial Park aka the tower park. Carl took the boys several months ago now while I was working one day and it remains a favorite. They love the tower you can climb up, which over looks a barn and silo and the golf course. It is a pretty nice park with really nice walking trails and plenty of play equipment. I finally got to go with to visit the tower park the other night so I had to take the camera along to capture some pictures.