Monday, July 10, 2017


We took a mini family vacation to Minneapolis right before the 4th of July. We went and stayed with Nathan's cousin Jeff and family. His girls are 9 and 6 so were the perfect age to help entertain Vivian. We met them at the Mall of America the first afternoon to go on some rides...Viv hadn't been to an amusement park before so it was interesting to see how she would react....she's been to 2 days at Walt Disney world but she was barely over 1 year I don't really count that. 

She wasn't thrilled with the first ride but the rest of them she thought were pretty fun. She really did great the whole weekend...she loved playing with the girls. She slept well in a room by herself and she really behaved well. 

She got Twilight Sparkle painted on her face. 

Riding the roller coaster with Dad. 

We had planned on going to the aquarium at the MOA but just really ran out of time. She really wanted to see the sting rays. 

Poor Rowboat had to stay home with GG Mangold. I had every intention of taking him...until the last minute...then I decided it would be easier to leave him home. He was a happy camper as always...waking up at Gma's house. 

Looking at her I Spy book...

The second day we took in the Como was free! And had lots of great animals. Viv loved it...she said her favorites were the giraffes...but she got really excited during the sea lion show. Checking out the polar bear...

Looking at the zebras. 

We walked through this really neat conservatory too. It was a really fun park. 

Saturday night Aunt Nancy came to babysit and we all went to Wisconsin...

Sunday morning I went and had brunch with my college friends who live in the city before heading home. It was a great trip...can't wait to take the kids again! 

Friday, July 7, 2017

Mish Mash and a Little Out of Order

Viv started swimming lessons...she still hasn't quite mastered putting her face in the water enough that she can move onto the next level. 

Rowan loves to climb and gets himself in trouble all the time...

I now have to keep all the chairs pulled away from the table so he can't climb up on them...but it won't be long and he'll figure out he can move them. 

School got out at the end of May...Viv had a program that she only sang the first song in and then came and sat on our laps because she wanted to be near Rowan. 

Lounging in their chairs...

We walk up to Lowe Park frequently and one of Viv's new favorite pastimes is to take her net and catch tad poles. 

We got out of town one night and drove into Chicago to see the World Champion Cubs!....and they lost, again! I still have yet to see the Cubs win in Wrigley! We went with Scott and Sarah Baker. We had a great time. 

Rowan has chewed off all the tips on our new markers...

And Viv still won't leave her brother alone...she mauls him every chance she gets! 

Elise and I went out for drinks one night and enjoyed all the new artwork they've installed in downtown Marion! 

4th of July

Since Rowan is in his running phase we didn't participate in a lot of the Freedom Festival this year but we did try out the Fly In breakfast at the Marion airport. We got to look in the medical helicopters and watch plenty of other planes take off and land. Rowan seemed to like it and would point at each plane. It was a bit chilly so we didn't hang out too long but it was a fun experience. 

We travelled to Monticello again for the pancake breakfast and parade. The kids were all really good. 

Viv only caught candy for about 1/2 the parade and then she sat down to eat it. 

Rowan was good as long as there was some action! He really liked all the antique tractors. 

Trying to get a grandparent picture...Rowan was DONE! Ha! 

Fireworks were legalized this year in Iowa so this 4th was loud! We lit some sparklers in the backyard and I wasn't sure if she'd be into them or not....but of course she showed no fear and dove right in. We also did snakes in the fire pit. We didn't go any 'big' fireworks since she was scared last we sat up in her room and watched what we could from her window. She loved seeing maybe we'll try again next year.