Friday, June 30, 2017

Bits and Pieces: June

Summer is in full swing. We've already gone to the Minnesota Zoo, spent a day at the beach at Lake Nakomis, checked out books from two different libraries (the Roseville Library is my new favorite: they have a Dunn Bros!), hit the indoor playground in New Brighton, visited the fish at the aquarium, and had friends here to play American doll gymnastics injury. There have also been trips to the park, mornings at the Y, and a late night drinking wine on a friend's patio for me.

Christopher has refused to transition to summer clothes, but since the weather has been relatively cool it has not been a problem for him. I was annoyed at first, but I decided to embrace it. He is getting plenty of sun protection, and it saves me time each morning. (Putting sunscreen on three kids and myself every day is one of my least favorite things about summer.)

I was a delegate at the St. Paul DFL City Convention in mid June. It was a long day, but very interesting. We arrived at 8 a.m. and left at 7:30 p.m. I was disappointed that we didn't endorse a candidate, and after seeing the whole process I can understand why a lot of people don't want to participate. It was frustrating in many ways. I was not bored, though. I am going to do some campaigning for my candidate and hope for a win in November.

We spent Father's Day with my in-laws at their new condo, which is just across the river from us. It is a nice place. I also made Ben a Bloody Mary and a raspberry rhubarb crostada. We gave him a Minnesota United hat and T-shirt. He is enjoying having an MLS team in town. He has been to a few games, and I am going to one with him at the end of July. His birthday is on Sunday, and it is always a challenge for me because it is so close to Father's Day. He is hard to buy for, because he never wants anything.

We had our annual friends camping trip last weekend. (40 x 40 goal - 2017 in the books!) We went back to Whitewater State Park, which is near Rochester. The weather was cool, but there were no bugs. The kids went to the beach despite the lower temperatures. The adults drank a lot of beer and Bullfrogs (Limeade and vodka). One fairly severe storm blew through. Clare was terrified and ran to the car. (I saw a bolt of lightening behind her, followed by an enormous clap of thunder. She was screaming.) Christopher slept through the entire thing in the tent. I was caught in the in the middle, because Ben was off doing dishes. I couldn't decide if I should bring Christopher into the car or Clare into the tent. Luckily, Ben came back right when it started hailing. I went to the car with Clare. A few minutes later, Ben appeared, holding my beer. Afterwards, when Clare told the other adults that her daddy brought her mommy her beer, everyone agreed it was true love. The kids also thought it was funny how all the grownups were running around in a panic, trying to secure everything before the storm got really bad. Despite all that, it was a great weekend. We are already looking forward to our fall trip.

Clare has been playing soccer on Tuesday nights, which she enjoys. Ben is her coach, which definitely increases her enjoyment. Both kids started gymnastics on Monday nights. Christopher is reluctant to go to his class. This past week, I saw him wiping tears from his eyes as he waited in line. Clare saw him in class though, and said he was having fun. I think he just turns on the tears for me. It is a bit heartbreaking, though. It is good practice for him, because he will be starting preschool in the fall.

Clare is practicing her reading a lot by reading to the other two kids. It frequently ends in a fight, but it is sweet until then. She is quite a good reader. She received a letter in the mail from her first grade teacher, which thrilled her to no end. She keeps reading it over and over.

She has also figured out how to do the jumping spider (an American Ninja Warrior obstacle) in our door frame. So she continues to work toward her goal of competing on that show. Jessie Graff is her idol. I am happy though, because she is awesome and a much better role model than, say, Barbie.

Christopher plays his guitar all day long and has quite a few new dance moves. He knows he is entertaining, so if he gets a laugh he does it over and over. And over.

We are getting ready for our annual small town 4th of July. I am very happy because my brother, sister-in-law and nephew will be joining us from London.

Happy 4th!

Swimming at Lake Nakomis.

Goofball at Hiawatha wading pool.

They tried to go to the Children's Museum while I was at the convention, but couldn't get in. Luckily there was a fun street party happening.

At the Zoo.

They watched the seals for a long time.

On Chimney Rock at Whitewater State Park.

Clare loves hiking.

This looks sweet, but Christopher was whining and crying.

Our friend Jason took this picture.  I love it!

Camping buddies. 

1 comment:

  1. I like your positive spin on Christopher's insistence on wearing fall clothes. No risk for sunburn AND less chance of getting a tick or bug bite!! (We have the opposite problem. Our kids would wear shorts in January if we let them.) Your camping tradition looks like so much fun (even with the storm). It gets more challenging to coordinate those weekends once kids get older and more serious about sports - but I really hope you're able to keep it going.

    I'm proud that you're a delegate and interested to hear more about your experiences.

    That photo of Christopher is adorable. Same with the one of you and Clare hiking.

    We still need to get together!!!