Mike had another two weeks of travel at the beginning of our school year, so we flew my Dad out to help again. I was so thankful to have his company and help. And the boys LOVE spending time with him. We had a softer start to the school year, but still got a lot done in that first week.
We also did some homeschooling on the road – a bike ride and a field trip to Hudson Gardens.
On Saturday, we jogged/walked in a 5k run that our friends put on each year in honor of their daughter who was adopted from China, had congenital heart problems, and died after surgery. It’s a fundraiser for third world orphans with medical problems. Three kids, in three different countries, will get operations because of the money raised in this run.
Our church service was held in the mountains on Sunday. We enjoyed the service there, a picnic, and then had some time to play.
Monday was our second week of CC and Mike was back home. We did our family presentation during opening assembly and then my Dad got to go back and forth between Ethan and Micah’s classes. That evening Micah had his soccer practice and we all went to watch.
Here are a couple other pictures from throughout his visit and of Mike and his buddies on his trip:
My Dad left on Tuesday morning after a wonderful trip. We sure loved having him for the week! When we dropped him off at the airport the boys both said they wished he (and grandma, obviously) lived out here by us. =D
I flew to Phoenix on Friday morning and came back home again on Sunday with Mikey. I’ll include a few pictures we took from our time there at the end of this one, but I’ll keep the focus on the fun the boys had with Grandpa and Grandma in town. And they really did have a whole lotta fun together!
The boys taught them a new game and played a whole tournament of it:
They also worked on Halloween costumes for CC. I had ordered some things for the book characters they were going to dress up as, but the box didn’t arrive until I was already gone. So I tasked my parents with making sure everything fit and making the necessary additions – like a red feather for Reepicheep’s ear. Thank you!! Parts of Micah’s costume (King Peter) came in handy for playing “Queen” with Grandma. I understand this may have been my mom’s favorite game to play – she got to order people around and get served by the knights/servants. =D
Ethan and Grandpa spent some time making a bird feeder (more pictures to come in the next post).
And they also went down to the park a couple times to rake the leaves and jump in them, sometimes while catching the football.
Meanwhile, in Phoenix…we were eating lots of good food, playing pickle ball, and hiking. Mike spent a whole lotta time playing PIG and I enjoyed reading my book. We were SO glad to get to spend much of Sunday with Grandma Cleve, with quick little visits with both grandparents, as well!
Next up…a couple final days all together in Denver.
We had the fun opportunity to see two of the boys’ grandparents recently. Grandma Cleve came out for a long weekend (she split her time, as usual, between us and Ashley/Zach/Caleb’s home) and then we stayed at Grandpa Russ’ home for a few days before our annual trip with Cass and Adam’s family. What a treat!
We made a few attempts at a picture of Grandma Cleve with all of her grandsons (one more grandson to be added around Christmas!!) after having a yummy breakfast all together. And then we just spent time together at our home enjoying each other’s company! Mike and Grandma Cleve stopped in to have dinner with Great Aunt Terry on their way to the airport. We’re already looking forward to her next trip in October!
A couple days after saying goodbye to her, we got to say hello to Grandpa Russ and stay at his home for a bit. We especially enjoy visiting him in the summer –> pool, ping pong, dogs = so much fun! And I always take home a new idea for a crockpot meal!! It was wonderful to see Grandpa Russ (and Duke and Calvin) again!
We sure enjoy our time with our parents/grandparents!
Aunt Ticia (Grandpa Russ’ sister) organized the Cleveland Reunion and hosted us graciously for the weekend. We stayed with Mike’s Dad and siblings (and their families) at a hotel near her home, but spent most of our days and evenings at her home for food, fellowship and lots of pool time! It was so much fun! The boys absolutely loved getting to know their cousins (technically second cousins once removed or something?! I can’t remember the term) and playing in the pool. And I met some people I had never met before, too, so that was a treat!!
Some of the boys enjoyed giving performances on their various instruments. E played a few songs on the piano and T played some on the saxophone. It was fun to allow them all to do a little showing off for us. =) E also was making up some songs with AJ, who plays the guitar.
And we took a few posed pictures of various groups:
We were so glad to join in on the fun this weekend. It was great! Thanks, Aunt Ticia, for organizing and hosting us all. We sure loved being with you again!!
We’re going back in time by about a month now…last month Ethan participated in Eagle Lake Camp for a week in the neighborhood by our church. It’s a Christian day camp our church sponsors with a couple other churches in that neighborhood. Micah had no interest in attending, but E had a great time (aside from the final day of camp which he did not attend and I am “over” talking about it by now…suffice it to say that he has a whole lotta his mama in him and can be quite intimidated by new experiences and is also very stubborn)! He did lots of activities throughout the week, but his favorite was probably playing ga-ga ball a whole bunch. =)
We walked by cousin, James, every day and said hey to him. =) Famous!
Meanwhile, Micah and I enjoyed our week flying solo. We had a couple playdates scheduled, but also spent some time at home playing and running errands. He grabbed my phone and snuck a picture of his friend and also one of me and one of my friend talking while we were holding babies and it just makes my heart happy to see my life through his eyes.
You betcha, folks, we love this state. The boys and I had the opportunity to travel with Mikey for one of his work trips to Minnesota and we had a great time. (We planned it in conjunction with our 5th annual trip with the Maurer crew, but more on that in another post.) We traveled out on Monday night and then the boys and I enjoyed various adventures during the week while Daddio worked. We even met up with him a couple times during the work day for lunches and quick hellos.
breakfast at the hotel and time at the library
lunch in the park with Daddio and his co-worker (and his fam)
exploring the city (Guthrie Theatre)
time at the hotel pool (the boys’ reaction to getting to go swimming is priceless, isn’t it??)
dinner with another co-worker (and his son) with ice cream to follow
Science Museum of St. Paul (highly recommend it!!!) and dinner with more co-workers and their families (no pics of that one)
time with my dear friend, a former roommate from college
delicious dinner and walk by Lake Calhoun
tunnel exploration from our hotel to the US Bank Stadium
…that afternoon we met up with the Maurer crew. More on that in the next post.
We really had a lot of fun exploring this new city. I imagine we’ll be back again; it was so much fun!! And hopefully I’ll snag some of Ethan’s pictures so you can see the vacation from his eyes. =D