Sunday, October 31, 2010


We had such a wonderful Halloween this year!  Truman was adorable, Scout was fully engaged in candy hunting, the entire family was at our house to celebrate my sister-in-law and my birthdays and the neighborhood was filled with adorable kiddos.  How much more perfect can you get?

ScoutFairy Scout was a Autumn Fairy this year.  She got the idea because of the “Fairy Garden” that my sister and mom created out at my parent’s farm this year.  The grandkids each had fairies that represented them and we created different areas with flowers, houses, decorations, etc. for the full fairy world.  Scout was in love with the whole idea and wanted to be a fairy to continue the fun. 

The girls had fairies…so what do you do for a little boy in a fairy garden?


You have Garden Gnomes!  The fairy garden included the Gnome Village for Truman and when I saw this costume I almost fell over!  Is he the cutest thing ever???


My nieces, Chloe and Kennedy, like to help the little kids trick-or-treat (plus it gives them the excuse to dress up and get candy too!)  Cute group, huh?  And the gnome outfit is just killing me!


Truman only made it to about 5 houses before he decided he had enough of the trick-or-treating part of Halloween.  He wanted to keep his costume on though!  I was shocked but he kept that hat and beard on for over an hour!  I was finally the one who took it off.

The rest of the girls went out with Chad and his dad and hit the streets.  They came home almost 2 hours later with a HAUL of candy.  I guess that Scout learned some tricks from her cousins.  She would ask for “candy for her little brother so she could share.”  Hmmm….I don’t think there will be much sharing going on!

Happy Halloween!  I hope everyone had a safe and fun night celebrating. 

Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater…

We took our annual trip to the pumpkin patch this year and as always we had a great time.  I love the fact that we have created these type of traditions with our kids.  I have such strong memories of this exact pumpkin patch when I was growing up and now to see my kids running through the fields…well…it is just a great reminder why we live in Lawrence. 


Like the How Tall sign…we have been doing this sign since Scout was only 3 months old! 


They added a new play area this year that the kids loved.  (Again showing the tradition thing Scout was super excited by the new set!  She immediately recognized that it had not been there before.)


Tru loved the tunnel under the hay.  He crawled back and forth over and over.




Truman, as always, had a great time people watching.  I swear that kid is amused by the human race.  He is such a detail guy.  When he gets his hands on something new or is in a new situation he really takes the time to take it all in and look everything over.  He spent about 15 minutes checking out the pumpkin before deciding that was the one for him!


When we got home we started carving.  Truman was hillarious trying to figure out what the heck we were doing.  Scout was the artist this year and designed our pumpkins for us while Mommy and Daddy did the actual carving.  Truman helped clean out the inside of the pumpkin and he liked to squish the goo.


Scout made a Kitty Pumpkin


Truman and the pumpkin had matching grins!



My pumpkin, Scout’s, Truman’s and Chad’s.  Not a bad looking group. 

Another wonderful fall tradition that we now get to share with our little guy...such a joy!

Ren Fest 2010

We took Truman, Scout and Scout’s friend Amber to the Renaissance Festival this year.  I haven’t been since I was in high school so I was a little worried that it wouldn’t be as fun as I remembered.  I was very wrong!  The kids had a blast.  They were the perfect age to really enjoy all of the activities.  Truman had a blast people watching and checking out all of the fun shows.


This was the look on his face pretty much the whole day.  He just laughed at all the crazy people!





What a fun day!  The people are CRAZY but in a fun, harmless way.  I even tried to participate in one of the shows by being hypnotized…didn’t work!  I was up there giving it my all but it was a bunch of hooey.  The kids got a kick out of seeing me on the stage until finally I got tired of hanging there in the uncomfortable seat and stood up and walked off the stage.  I don’t think the hypnotist was too thrilled with my departure.

We will definitely go back next year.  Scout is already planning our trip!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Weeke’s Family Visit

Our good friends from Wisconsin came for a visit over Labor Day Weekend.  Yes…I do realize that was almost 2 months ago.  But I am just now dumping the photos from my camera.  So I found these and had to share!


John, Andy and Chad on my parent’s porch.  John and Chad met when they were in the Madison Scout’s Drum and Bugle Corps and have maintained a strong friendship through the years.  My brother met John when he was in our wedding and they immediately clicked.  These guys are so fun together.


Michael, Cristin and Truman.  Cristin. John’s wife, is an amazing lady and we just love her to death.  Their son Michael is two weeks younger than Truman!  He was supposed to be several months younger but he decided to come super early so he and Tru could share a birthday month.  I can’t wait to watch these two boys grow up together and become the best of friends like John and Chad.


Michael showing off his cymbal skills to impress Chad.  Chad was a cymbal player in the Scouts so of course we have a pair. 


John is Truman’s Godfather and we are so blessed that he agreed to play this role in our son’s life.  John is an incredible man and I know he will be a great role model for our little guy.

We had such a fun weekend.  I hate that we live so far away from each other.  They are the only reason I would visit Madison in the winter!  Hopefully we will have a chance to see them again soon.  Miss you guys!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Random Things I Love…

Sometimes life throws you for a loop.  Sometimes it seems like it would be easier to just hide under the covers and pretend that the world has stopped moving.  Sometimes it is hard to remember why to keep fighting.  Of course my family and friends make that easier.  A silly dance by Scout or a grin from Truman can turn the whole day around.  But sometimes you just need to remember the little things that make life great.  The random things that you love and make you happy…

Here are a few of mine.

Flannel sheets

The smell of a bonfire

Candy corn

Gilmore Girls

The moment the lights go down before a performance

New underwear

The song “Shoop”

Feeling chilly after a day in the sun

Peanut butter fudge ice cream

Watching someone open a gift you have given

Sitting on my parent’s porch

A perfect avocado

Books by Herman Wouk

Weeping Willows

Sand between my toes

Believing in Santa

Getting a card in the mail

School supplies

Coffee with dessert at a fancy restaurant

Singing at the top of your lungs…with the windows rolled DOWN

There are many more and I could go on and on.  And that is a good thing.  It is a great thing.  Life can throw a lot of garbage in your path but these random things are worth it all.  I know it might sound cheesy but it helps. 

So…your turn!  Share some of the random things you love!

Friday, October 1, 2010

It doesn’t make sense…

I found out last night that a friend of mine had passed away.  He was only 30 years old. 

We were not incredibly close.  In fact we saw each other only on occasion.  We met a few years ago when I was working at the Chamber.  He was a business owner and a member.  I had the opportunity to work with him on a couple of events and we had a few really great conversations.  He was the type of guy who could immediately make anyone feel comfortable.  He was full of ideas and was committed to our community.  I was so impressed that someone so young was already so successful.  He didn’t take himself too seriously though.  We joked about being the next generation of leaders and how to take Lawrence by storm.  And he had a great smile. 

So although we weren’t close, I am overwhelmingly saddened by his passing…in a way that I can’t really explain.

I keep experiencing waves of emotion.  I cannot stop thinking about his wife and what she must be going through.  I picture trying to explain to his 2 year old son that Daddy is gone.  I try to imagine how it is possible that we will not run into each other at an event sometime in the future and catch up with everything that has been going on in our lives.  I don’t know how his parents can breathe or his friends that were with him can function…because this isn’t supposed to happen. 

This isn’t supposed to happen.  A healthy, young, vibrant man with a beautiful family and a wide open future should not have been taken so soon.  It doesn’t make sense.  It is not possible to process.  He wasn’t fighting a long illness or involved an a tragic accident.  What happened was tragic, of course, but this was different…one minute he was here and the next he wasn’t.  And from what I understand he was alone when it happened.  Was he scared?  Did he know what was going on? 

I consider myself a religious person.  I am not a study the bible, go to church every week no matter what, pray at dinner type of Christian--but I do believe.  In fact I have spent more time in prayer during the last couple of years than I have pretty much my entire life.  But his death shakes that core.  Because how does religion explain this man taken before it was time?  I know the standard answers and to be honest—none of them are good enough.

When things like this occur it is natural to want to pull those you love close and thank God that everyone is safe and sound.  It is also natural to be in awe of the complete unknowns that life holds for each one of us.  Maybe awe isn’t the right word.  Fear plays a big role too.  How do we deal with dropping our child off at daycare or sending our family down the road on a trip? 

There are no answers.  There are no words even.  It just doesn’t make sense.

The world was a better place because Gavin was in it and I was lucky to have known him.