Sunday, July 26, 2015

Mid-Summer Weekend

Have I told you lately how much I love summer? Our family adventures continued this weekend...
This year for our 12th wedding anniversary we went to a wine dinner/cooking class at the Arboretum. The 4-course dinner was prepared by Chef Ryan Cook of Sea Change. Isn't this nicoise salad beautiful?
The chef (a former Alaskan fishermen) talked to us about each course.
We also heard from a speaker about sustainable seafood.
Funny enough - one of our wine pairings came from Kunde Estates in Sonoma County -
one of the wineries we toured last year on our Napa Valley trip.
It was a delicious and fun date night.
Not quite like the culinary masterpieces we ate the night before - on Friday morning I made the kids a smiley breakfast.
An issue came up at work so I spent most of Friday morning on the phone but made up for it Friday afternoon. I took the kids to Minnewashta beach where we swam and played in the sand.  

Then we went for a frozen yogurt treat at Cherry Berry. Hadley loves any kind of fruity, chewy candy on top of her fro yo. Miles likes a variety - from sour patch kids to cookie dough.
Saturday morning we headed to the Mill City Farmers Market and had breakfast (chocolate croissants from the Salty Tart) on the steps of the Guthrie. We bought some beautiful produce and looked inside the Mill City Museum.
Our morning view.
We also walked along the river front and over the Stone Arch Bridge.

This kid is fascinated with anything mechanical. He loved the trains and old gears he saw in the museum and had many technical questions about the lock and dam.

We got two beautiful summer bouquets at the market.
That afternoon we headed to New Prague to have dinner with my grandpa, Great Aunt Lucy, my parents, and Jerome and Charlene from Rockport, TX. We made a quick stop first at the local grocery store to buy kolachky fillings and the kids got a free cookie.
They also love the free rides on this mechanical horse.

My grandpa and great aunt have huge gardens that take up almost their whole backyards. We got tours and saw all of their beautiful produce. Hadley even picked a "bikini" (zucchini).
Lucy showed us her saffron and gave me a jar. What a treat!
We also did a homemade wine tasting - pear and grape from 2007.

And had a picnic in the backyard. It was a nice summer night (besides the mosquitoes that like sweet Hadley).
Today - after spending the morning cleaning the house and mowing the lawn (boring!) we went to Canterbury Downs. The kids got free pony rides and we bet on a few races. I won a grand total of $0.80.
Tonight we grilled turkey burgers, ate dinner on the deck, and took a walk. It was such a fun, family weekend.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

6 Years Old!

Miles turned 6 on July 11 - yippee! At 6 Miles loves:

  • Legos (he's mastered the 6-12 year old sets and can complete them on his own)
  • Cars and trucks
  • Any type of dessert and candy 
  • Doing projects
  • Going to the cabin
  • Drawing - he's especially good at drawing dogs and trucks with trailers
  • Math and numbers
  • The Odd Squad cartoon on PBS
  • Being goofy
  • Building forts
  • Tubing behind the pontoon and playing on the beach
  • Driving the tractor with grandpa
  • Buttermilk pancakes

In his own words - this is what he had to say about his birthday: I love having fun. And I love the trampoline park. And I like the Inside Out movie.
Miles woke up to a huge remote control truck and a MagnaTiles set
Then he got back in bed so that we could "surprise" him with a homemade buttermilk pancake breakfast in bed

We had a full family fun day in honor of Miles' birthday - first stop the trampoline park

Second stop - arcade games

Third stop - a movie Inside Out - in the theater

Last stop - a pizza dinner outside at Old Chicago
Miles has grown before our eyes. He is independent and so smart yet still loves to be cuddled. Since last year he's grown 3 inches and gained 5 pounds. I joke with him that he'll soon be carrying his mama around! We love this boy so much. Celebrations will continue at the beginning of August with a family birthday party.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

4th of July - Loving Summer

We are having the best summer!

For a Father's Day gift Rachel and I took our dad to the new $37 million Surly Brewery.
We sampled lots of beer and took a tour.
It was a beautiful night - we hung out in the brewery yard and had dinner.
We made our annual summer day trip to Hutchinson to visit our CSA farm - Loon Organics.
We picked strawberries, took a tractor/wagon tour of the farm, and played on the farm.

Summer = Popsicles and running through the sprinkler

Sun bathing beauties
This little one was so tired she fell asleep on me - just like she used to when she was a baby.
We spent a day with the cousins and went to Cascade Bay water park in Eagan where we swam, went down a water slide, had a picnic, and floated on the lazy river (or in the case of 2 five-year old boys - the "crazy river.")

Hadley just finished soccer.
Miles is halfway through the summer t-ball season.

This 4th of July we headed to the cabin for a long weekend with Rachel's family and my parents. The girls got their nails painted in patriotic colors.
This weekend we went tubing behind the pontoon and
went swimming with the kids in the middle of the lake for the first time.
Family 4th of July
We decorated the pontoon and were in a boat parade.

We also went to the Pillsbury parade - a very small town parade.

There were about 10 floats - this one being one of the nicer ones...
Surprisingly, they handed out beer to the adults!...
No horses in this parade - just huge cows....
...and they handed out stuffed animals to all of the kids. It was the most unique and most fun parade we've been to in awhile.
Another first- whipper snappers for the kids...
...and sparklers! Happy independence weekend everyone!