Thursday, June 24, 2010

All good things come to an end...

It's our last day already! The rain came over night, and we woke up to it. I'd planned to spend some time at the beach...hmmm, packing instead. Got quite a bit of stuff into the truck, and then Jane and I checked out the beach. She was insistent that we go in; so we went back up and got suits on. Figured I was playing the 'best mommy' card by toughing it out; it was kind of windy and chilly. However, we had a great time; maybe 20 minutes, but it wasn't that cold, and she had a blast running and jumping into the little waves. Back up to shower and pack the rest of our stuff. We then headed up and around the thumb so we could see the Pointe Aux Barques Lighthouse. Jane was pretty impressed (you never know with a 4 year old!). We got to look at the staircase, but they only had like 6 rungs you could climb; the rest was closed to the public. Jane was a little freaked about the stairs, but I love the photo of her by the window. It was a beautiful sunny afternoon, and I took a bunch of fun photos of the girls in their dresses from Mexico. Drove for awhile and found a nice place for lunch; looked like a greasy spoon, but really had nice people and good paninis. Penny slept for most of the ride home, and Jane and Gram Nomi did good in the backseat, even though Jane was getting a little done with traveling. I've decided all parents really need a Grandma to constantly ride in the backseat with the kids. Seriously, calmest my kids have ever been.

We made it home! Had some Gus's ribs and breadsticks for dinner, then Mom and Gram Nomi got back in the car to head to K'zoo. Lots of driving, but I think we were all happy to be settled back into our 'spaces' for the evening.

Wonderful trip. I'm so mad I didn't get a pic of all 4 of us!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Relax and play...

A whole day to just play and hang out together. How wonderful. We started with a little walk on the beach. It was kind of windy and a little overcast, but still very beautiful. Grandma and Jane followed us for a little while, and then turned back to search for shells and rocks closer to the beach by our cabin. Mom and I went down to a little point; I love rocks. There was a path of big rocks leading out into the lake. How pretty under a little water. I was carrying Penny in the backpak, or I would have explored even further out. It was COLD water today, though! Penny fell asleep on the way back. I took Jane up to put on her swimsuit and she wanted her fishing pole as well. She had fun practicing with that, and once Penny woke up they both played in the sand.

Beautiful morning. Oh yeah, except for the moment when Jane went running up the lawn. Mom looks up and says, "Why is your daughter taking off her swimsuit?" I'm like, "JANE, put your suit back on!" And then, she's pissing like a boy on the grass. Super sweet. Luckily, we were the only guests. I guess she was at least attempting to get back to the cottage; I think I'd rather she peed in the lake, but I can't really tell her that, right?!

Little freak-out at nap time; I think Jane was a little homesick, and probably over tired from last night being so late. She finally fell asleep, and we had to wake her up to go to dinner.

We went back into Caseville for dinner, and we split two perch dinners. My girls love fish! It was great, and a wonderful last dinner for our little vacation. Topped it off with some ice cream, and Jane played for a few minutes at a playground. Did you know that seaguls really like ice cream? This guy was like defending the bowl from the rest of them. It was supposed to storm all afternoon, but we didn't see rain. The sky got really dark after our icecream, so we headed home. Thought we'd try for a little earlier bedtime; Jane was up late, probably because of her long nap. I can't win! Finally got everyone settled in for the evening.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

We're off!

8 am and we're heading for the thumb...missed the Tim Hortons exit outside of Flint b/c Mom & I were blabbing. On to Starbucks-did you know they make some really tasty egg breakfast wraps? Yum. Made it up there by 11, drove past our cabin at Tranquil Sands since we couldn't get in til noon. Had an okay lunch after driving around the block in Port Austin like 10 times. Jane had a little meltdown before lunch, but she was soooo awesome in the car; sat quietly with Grandma Nomi while Penny slept. Super sweet.

Checked in to our way cool cabin; Jane was so excited to see the little circle staircase and the twin bed in the loft area. Grandma Sandee will sleep up there, and Grandma Nomi and I (+ Penny) each have our own bedroom downstairs. Very pretty area, great view of the lake. Weird toliet-with one of those up on the wall tanks....which I broke the chain on the first use. Awesome-o.

Unpacked and then it was way naptime for Penny. And me. :) Jane had some quiet time with the Grams. We headed down to the beach around 4; I wasn't expecting much, but it was so nice. The water was actually really quite warm, and it's shallow for an incredibly long way. I tried taking Jane out with her life jacket on, but Miss Penelope was NOT excited about that. She played nice with Gram S for a minute, but then started screaming. I came back and got her and the four of us went walking out into the lake. I found a small sandy path (less rocky) for Mom to follow (her sandals were gettting too many rocks into them). There are some very neat rock piles in the water that you can stand on. Jane was 'swimming' all over; she's much more confident than last year. We played in the sand for awhile after that, then realized it was dinner time. Quick rinse off and we drove to Caseville for dinner. We ended up at an awesome Italian place; Mom and I split some super yummy lasagna. Thought we'd pick up a few things at the grocery store for tomorrow.

Oh yeah. We're in a crazy small town. Where the only grocery store closes at 8 p.m. It's now 8:11 and it's all shut down.

Weather was looking iffy, so I figured if we were going to do marshmallows it needed to be tonight. Matches....hmmm. I found a set of book matches in a cupboard--all three of them. I hate book matches. I'm always afraid I'm going to burn my fingers. So, Mom and I agree that I can attempt to light the fire, but I sneak out so that Jane doesn't get disappointed if I can't get it to go. Bend down...first match. Sh**t they freak me out--I toss it as soon as it lights because I'm a silly girl. Ooookey, 1 down only 2 left, one 4 year-old inside who has been talking about campfires and marshmallows for pressure. I get some paper towel and stuff under the lights...and stays lit. Whew. (Yeah, obviously I won't be winning any Survivor type shows). We have marshmallows and they are yummy. Even without the s'more's fixin's. Jane loves them, Penny has a bite and wanted more. We watch the sunset over the lake. Pretty perfect end to a very long day. Wait--it's what time? It's almost 10 p.m.? Crap. Get the girls in bed already!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Daddy's Day

The girls and I took Mike to French Laundry for breakfast, he got a crazy steak hollandaise special they were running for the holiday. Pretty yummy. Jane wanted all of his steak. He's rapidly reaching the point where we're going to have to start ordering two of the things he likes--Jane usually wants his smoked salmon when he gets lox, and definitely likes steak....when Penny gets a little bigger, there might not be enough to share!

Buzzed down to Kensington afterwards for a little relaxation and sun. Slightly more annoying crowd this year (we had to pick up and move our blanket away from cig smoke and hooka smoke like 3 times). It's kind of like-dude, it's a big park, and we really don't want to sit here and breathe that crap you really have to sit right next to us (and our small children)? Girls had fun in the water for a few minutes, and we had some nice snacks. Came home and tried to have naps, didn't last very long. Made some steaks for dinner...yes, Mike got steak twice today, and I made some lemon meringue pie...mile-high. I had a bunch of egg whites in the fridge left over from making ice-cream...I think there is much more meringue than pie filling!

Off to pack and clean for our girl's trip to the thumb!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Help, she's a girly girl!

Jane, of course, was up all last night. No nap, even driving home after all that. It was hot last night, but seriously that kid does not need sleep! We went to the MI State archery championships to watch Lori shoot for awhile. She was great and wanted to stay much longer than I expected. I'd usually expect that she'd be cranky and tired today, but she was an angel angel that conned me into ridiculous sparkly sandals. Sandals with a little platform heel that I think are completely and totally inappropriate on a 4 year old. Sandals she's going to want to wear everywhere, and that I'm probably going to regret because I'll constantly be saying, "not the fancy shoes, just your flipflops".

'Momma, I LOVE these. I love them. I love them...." as she prances (literally) around Payless.

Fine--call Daddy (ambush) and ask him--"Daddy, i love these shoes, Momma says no, but can I have them? They're $9 and they're sparkly and I love them? Her eyes get HUGE--yes???? Daddy says yes, Daddy says I can have them!!! In the car, "momma, I love you. Do you know why I love these shoes? (points to the big sparkly gem). Thank you soo much. I love these shoes." She was working it pretty hard today.

Whew, what to do with the girly-girl!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Funday Friday!

Thought I'd try to start a 'fun day friday' and do something more exciting than meijers or the library with the girls. Don't know if it will last as we've got some busy weeks ahead with family get togethers and trips, but it's a good concept, I think.

Today, we went to Indian Springs Metropark in White Lake, because I knew they had a splash/spray area. We had gone to one at a different park a few years ago with Gram D, and it was super fun. I thought the girls would enjoy it, and with the temps in the high 80's water is always good.

What a great park! There is an underwater tunnel/room under a pond; lots of fishies came to visit us. We tried to go for a hike; not quite as long as I was intending, but the signs warning us to stay on the path because it's an area that has quite a few of Michigan's only poisonous rattlesnakes kind of cut short our comfort level. Jane was holding my hand pretty tightly. I tried to tell her that we probably would never see one (please please please, I do NOT want to see a rattlesnake with my 4 year old walking and my 1 year old in the backpack!), but she was a little freaked. We did make it down to a cool sundial feature-you stand in the middle and are the sundial. It was overcast and didn't make a huge shadow, but she kind of got the concept. There was also a little pond with a small dock to walk out on; we saw a ton of tadpoles and one big frog.

Play areas galore; whole wooden structure that we didn't visit, a rope climbing contraption, a maze, and a rock wall that we didn't get to. Did play in the very cute smaller play area and had our little lunch. Then we went over to the splash area. Jane was running all over, and I helped Penny walk around the edges. She was trying to go into the water sprays, and Jane helped her some too. Little chilly with the wind and it being overcast, but then the sun really came out and it started getting pretty hot. We left so Penny could get in at least one nap for the day, but there are so many other things we want to go back and check out. There's a nature center too, as well as a ton of trails for walking and biking.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Flower Girls

Wanted to get a photo of the girls with our poppies... and I know they often don't make it through rain storms. We're supposed to get a thunderstorm later today or tonight, and we had a brief bit of sun this morning. Put on some dresses and went outside. Kind of considering this other one of Penelope a good 1 year photo; never got over to Portrait Innovations or anything, but I do take a ton of photos of the girls...Penny was too weirded out with all the plants that are 3x bigger than her, so she refused to try to stand on her own. Grabbed a chair and she and Jane are both looking at the camera. I'll take it.

Busy summer weekends ahead. Off to sign-up for Cromaine's summer reading program, and then we're going to Holly's open house.

Hugs from Penny incredibly sweet.