Sunday, August 26, 2007

Thanks A Lot

I was still tired this evening from all the walking around yesterday and I probably should've taken a nap this afternoon. So I told Daddy to cut the coals and load up the kids. We headed to a local spot to get dinner...the kind that serves breakfast all day long.

After, wrestling with the kids over crayons, who gets what crayons, watching Gabe toss a cracker almost to a neighboring table, dividing up 3 plates of food (no one ever gets an entire meal all to themselves!), eliminating as much fat and sugar as one can possible do with breakfast food; both Daddy and I felt like we had been thrown into a mosh pit.

Interestingly, Daddy said the following as we drove off to a nearby park (as if we hadn't had enough mayhem for one evening):

"It's hard to follow the example of St. Joseph. He only had 1 child and that child was divine. And his wife was without sin!"

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Little Farm Hands

Here are a few more pics of the kids at the Little Farm Hands booth and activity center. A lot of these types of activities are free for the kids and parents. It's a great way for them to see how food gets from the farm to the store and who has to work to get it there. Very cool! Little Gabe liked the fuzzy wool on the fake sheep. Nighty, night...after a day like today...we deserve a good night's rest!

Deals, Indoctrination & A Bit of History

Here are a few more pics:

1) Gabe checking out the Fair Coupon Book...just helping Mommy scout out some deals.
2) Molly entranced by XCEL Energy's video on nuclear power plants. Hmmm?
3) A very cool photo of downtown St. Paul from territorial days indicating the exact location of great-great Grandpa John's building. Note the Haggenmiller name in the photo.

The Great Minnesota Get-Together

Sore feet, sticky hands, bloated bellies, and a makeshift smile all mean only one thing around here. The great Minnesota get-together strikes again!

We parked our ride at Trinity Lutheran church, one of the many transit stops for shuttling bodies to the feed trough this morning and made it to the fairground by 10:45AM. We all had a great time running into relatives (Grandpa Ben's cousin, John Osterbauer and his wife) at the Security booth where we quickly I.D.ed the kids with wristbands, riding the Sky Ride (the strollers rode in their own gondola!), catching a juggling show, the lumberjack show, and the firesafety demonstration-in-a-semi, climbing the fire tower at the DNR building, watching various livestock and their young at the Miracle of Birth Center, and finally enjoying a sit down dinner in the back area of Dino's Gyros. Now we know who loves us, baby!

A few pics of the kids follow in the next few posts. I should learn how to set up Picasa Web to do a web album. But miss giving you all the commentary...I think, not!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Turtle floater, Frog strangler

OK, I love rain! I remember as a kid pressing my nose against the screen at my mom's front door to smell the air after or during a rain. In West Texas, the moistened dirt always smelled wonderful, and I can still remember what that smell was like. It smelled like a gardener's haven, and I loved it!

Pressing my nose against my own screens now doesn't quite smell the same here in MN. It's probably because I have such bad allergies that my sense of smell is pretty much gone. And after this many days of rainy weather, my thoughts are more on flat hair, soggy children, muddy feet, our ever-dirty entryway rug, and the lawn that should have been mowed in that tiny window of opportunity last Saturday morning. Daddy chose to go to confession instead. Yes, a nobler cause; but now we're the only shaggy dog on the block.:(

Rain, rain go away. Come again another day; or at least until after we've gone to the State Fair.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Celebrate! You're Gr8!

Monica celebrated her 8th birthday today. She was very excited this morning to open Maria's gift. Maria who is very detail-oriented chose a pop-up birthday card, a bike bell, and a small porcelain doll. She was very proud of her gifts for Monica!

We searched high and low for just the right bike for Monica since she has outgrown her current one. Daddy favors vintage bikes with fenders and coaster brakes. They're hard to find and even harder to find in actual useable condition. We scored a great bike just the right size from Craig's List. It is a 1963 Schwinn Hollywood. There's a bit of rust but it still has the original seat and front tire. These may have to be replaced. With a little TLC, she'll be back up to a nice shiny ride!

Here are a few pics of the birthday girl.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Color Coordinated

I have had so much to blog about lately, but haven't had the energy to do it. I currently have a cold and still must plug on each day with food prep, diapers, laundry, etc., etc. But there are so many laughs and little smiles all day long with all the interesting things said & done. Here are a few things that have been coming up:

Monica: Mom, this jelly has 16g of sugar in it!
Maria: Mom, I think I need to go shopping with you.
Molly: I'm being such a nice girl because I'm growing up.
Lucas: I'm going to get my tools and go and fix the bridge with Daddy!
Gabe: Lately, he's been emptying out all the drawers and bringing me the contents one by one. This little game gets old fast!

OK, so who was color-coordinated today? Lucas wins the prize! Not only did he have red matching socks that matched his red shirt, he also had red underwear; which he showed me, of course.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Row, row, row your boat

Here's a quick pic I took of the boys this morning. Lucas is obssessed with boats. It may be because of his nautical themed room. In any case, he loves boats and anything and everything can become a vessel when the mood strikes. This morning he overturned the basket for toys we keep in the family room and quickly asked me to put Gabe in his "boat!" I'm not sure where they were sailing off to but it sure seemed fun.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Girls, Girls, Girls

So the boys are over at Grandma Carol's today. I just had to do it. We were invited to a Backyard Carnival put together by one of the homeschooling families in our area. It was very cute. The girls (plus 2 of their little girl friends) went around and played mini-bowling, ring toss, the fishing pond, the clothes pin drop, and football, beanbag and golf ball throws. It was a lot of fun! Of course, we had to fight off all the bees...very common at this time of year. The bees are hungry and they know death is imminent with summer waning.

Now we're off to the wading pool. As if I don't have anything better to do. Well, actually I don't. Laundry, bills, and dishes are never better things to do. They are necessary, but not always comparable to sitting at the wading pool avoiding getting splashed and saving overturned babies from the 1 foot of water.

In any case, I'm a sucker for a good time!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Bangs or Not?

I've always thought about growing out my bangs and wanted to solicit some of your input on this issue. I really started to think that bangs are out until I found these two very hot chicks who sport them. Of course, I am between the ages of both of these lovely ladies and I can probably still support and defend my 80's connections. However, I wanted to get your take on the matter taking into account my frame (5'1" and well, we'll just leave my frame with that much information!) and the shape of my face.


Monday, August 13, 2007

They're Back!

At around 3:30 this afternoon our very large blue van backed into the driveway. Gabe and I were ecstatic to welcome Daddy and the other kids home. Yes, I really did miss the other holy terrors in my life. It was a very relaxing weekend on this end!

Daddy on the other hand experienced a little bit of say, my daily world. Here are a few snippets from the trip:
1) In spite of much threatening, Monica and Maria can only watch Lucas for a maximum of 5 minutes.
2) Daddy saved Lucas from a couple of brushes with death - a) while climbing on a makeshift wood pile and b) from getting hit with a very large horseshoe while he wandered into the game.
3) Who cares who sees you naked, Maria, while Daddy dries your sopping wet clothes (after Molly threw them into the pooled water near the showers) with a hand dryer ;and simultaneously tries to shield your body with a beach towel!
4) Both nights were spent in the bathroom/storm shelter due to thunderstorms.
5) Daddy hates juice boxes.
6) Since Daddy hates juice boxes, Lucas would steal the juice box furthest from Daddy (at least 25 yards away) and suck down all the juice before Daddy could take it away.
7) Even if you're the sweetest and cutest little girl at the campsite and you ask for more campfire songs, when Daddy puts his guitar down, it's over!
8) The lake was like bathwater and the shower was like lakewater so they learned quickly how to do the 3 minute boogey.
9) Even if you forgot your deodorant, it's're in a natural setting.
10) Don't worry if you haven't seen one of your lawn chairs in over a year. Chances are it will turn up at the Dad's & Kid's campfire next year. And it surely did!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Home Alone

Well, Gabe and I are home alone this weekend. Daddy is off with the other 4 kids at a Dad's & Kid's campout. This is their annual campout/Mommy's weekend off so they left this afternoon and are probably pitching their tent now. It's been a slow progression in tent upgrades. We are now at the two-room tent with fan for ventilation. We assembled it for the first time last evening with minimal swearing! It's very quiet around here to say the least and, of course, all the other moms are in hiding so as not to be disturbed with Ladies' Nights Out and luncheons in hopes of getting some work done and much needed rest.

I miss Daddy and the other kids already...heck, I missed them 5 minutes after they were gone. OK, so I have a streak of melancholy in me. My one consolation: it's only the weekend, and I still have one little monster to keep me somewhat occupied.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Don't Cry Over Spilled Milk!

But no one ever said, "Don't Scream!" I just lost it today as I heard the dripping of a beverage from the kitchen table onto the floor. I just mopped the floor on Saturday, I was alone with the kids, and I was trying to put my lunch together. All of these wonderful factors converged and like the Minneapolis bridge, I lost it. I apologized to the kids later on, and I won't even name who spilled their milk. But you know these kids have an imperfect mother with imperfect reactions, but I have a perfect way to apologize. "I'm sorry" works every time.

Village Fest

We snuck into the St. Anthony Village Fest parade route to watch Daddy and the girls on Friday evening. Although, we live in a different suburb we still enjoy Village Fest in our old neighborhood and the girls play summer soccer back in St. Anthony. It's a great little town. Here are a few pics. You can see that the St. Paul Winter Carnival's Vulcan Krewe got hold of Lucas and painted on a moustache!

Friday, August 3, 2007

Hitting Too Close to Home

We were so sad to find out yesterday that one of the victims in the bridge collapse Wednesday was one of Daddy's coworkers from the Chiropractic College in Bloomington. Patrick Holmes died of mechanical and positional asphyxiation in the collapse of the bridge. Daddy's supervisor had just spoken to Patrick before he left work on his way home on Wednesday. His wife called the school to find out when he had left because he never made it home. They pieced things together, and I'm sure she went downtown and found that one of the victims was her husband. Patrick leaves behind his wife and their two children, Gaven 6 and Rena 4.

Our hearts just break for their family. Daddy went down to the research department where Patrick worked to offer his support to the rest of the people in the department. Daddy worked with Patrick for a few months a couple years ago before he was moved to another department. He also remembers golfing with Patrick one year at a school function and how his grip came loose and Patrick's club was flung so high it almost hit some high-line wires.

The people in the research department were very sad and told Daddy, "Just go home and hug your kids!"

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Major Devastation & Many Tears

Thankfully, we are all okay after this evening's horrible collapse of the I-35W bridge in Downtown Minneapolis. We were all at home having dinner when the bridge collapsed. I still keep thinking how I was just on the bridge yesterday morning (Tuesday) going southbound for a morning meeting in S. Minneapolis. Daddy also crosses the bridge every T, Th, & F mornings and afternoons to get to & from work.

We prayed a family rosary tonight for all the rescue workers and victims and their families. It reminds me so much of Sept. 11 and how devastating the pictures were of the wreckage on the television. I cried just the same for all the precious life lost in this accident.

Please continue to pray for all of us here in MN! Thank you.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

You Say It's Your Birthday

Happy, happy birthday to every girl and boy. We hope this very special day brings you lots of joy. We hope the birthday presents you get from Mom and Dad will make this very special day the best you ever had. Happy Birthday. (From Lunch With Casey Jones, 1958)

Daddy grew up with the Casey Jones Show which aired on WTCN out of Minneapolis. Some of you will remember that.

We had a very special morning which included waffles and a little photo session while Daddy opened his birthday card. It was a little rocky getting everyone to cooperate but Daddy really enjoyed the card which was a pop-up birthday riddle picked out by the kids:

How many dads does it take to screw in a light bulb?

We don't know because they decided to raise the ceiling three feet, install track lighting & put up a ceiling fan!

We love you, Daddy! Happy Birthday.
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