Grandma Camp

Last week, Joe’s mom took all of her grandkids for the week and had their annual “Grandma Camp”.  The kids always look forward to several days with their cousins and it’s always a nice break for Joe and I.  This was the first year Ashton got to spend the entire week there so he was excited to be one of the big kids.  They went to the cabin on Sunday night and we picked them up on Friday afternoon.  The kids were busy horseback riding, swimming, miniature golfing, doing projects, and they even got to go to Ronald McDonald House to donate all of the pop tabs they have been collecting throughout the year – they use the money from these to pay the electric bill at the Ronald McDonald House.



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My kids came home tired and that’s always a sign of a fun week!  Jayde told me this was the best Grandma Camp she’s ever been to, so Grandma must be doing something right!  They’re already talking about next year – and so am I because having 5 kid free days never happens!


Summer Fun List

2017 summer

I mentioned recently that I wanted to create a Summer Fun List of things the kids want to accomplish this summer.  We sat down this weekend and made a list.  Here’s what they felt was most important for this summer:

  • Water balloons
  • Ruff House
  • Go to Grandma’s lake house
  • Go out for ice cream
  • Make our own door signs
  • Run through the sprinkler
  • Go to the pool
  • Visit the zoo
  • Visit the Lincoln Children’s Museum
  • Visit the Sensory Garden
  • Obstacle course in the yard
  • Treasure hunt
  • Make slime
  • Play a board game

I love the items they put on their list.  Most are pretty simple and all will be lot of fun!  We can’t wait to get started checking items off of the list!

I’m hoping soon to start adding more home decor projects to the blog – it may be Fall before it happens though as this summer is kicking my booty when it comes to home projects.  I have a ton of ideas that I want to implement in our home, but finding more than 5 minutes a day to work on them has proven to be impossible (and convincing my husband to jump on board and assist me with these projects is also proving to be difficult at the moment)!  So stay tuned for more of that in the coming months!

Happy Birthday Danika!

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Somehow it doesn’t seem possible that I can have a 9 year old!  Today, we’re celebrating this sweet girl!  Danika is the sweetest, most kind-hearted child I know.  She has a soft spoken personality, but yet is so witty and has the best one-liners when no one is expecting them.  She’s the best big sister and cannot wait until she’s old enough to babysit.  Danika loves volleyball and is enjoying her first year of having 4H pigs (she actually spent most of last night writing an “essay” about how to care for pigs because she thought it would be fun!).  We measured her on the growth chart last night and she’s close to 5′ tall – somehow that makes me feel really sad (probably because I know it won’t be long and she’ll be taller than me).  I can’t wait to see what the future holds for this sweet girl!

I ask all of my kids the same questions on their birthday each year, and it’s fun to see their answers change from year to year – this year it was funny because over half of Danika’s answers were the same as last year.  Here they are:

  1. What is your favorite color? Turquoise
  2. What is your favorite toy? My volleyball
  3. What is your favorite fruit? Strawberries
  4. What is your favorite TV show? I don’t watch TV
  5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Mac and cheese
  6. What is your favorite outfit? Long pink maxi dress
  7. What is your favorite game? Doctor and spy dodgeball
  8. What is your favorite snack? Cookies & milk
  9. What is your favorite animal? Turtles
  10. What is your favorite song? Fast by Luke Bryan
  11. What is your favorite book? A Dog’s Purpose
  12. Who is your best friend? Gracie Reynolds, Sydney Sagehorn &                                                                                                                                   Adelyn Tenclay
  13. What is your favorite cereal? Fruit Loops
  14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Practice volleyball, softball and basketball
  15. What is your favorite drink? Milk
  16. What is your favorite holiday? Birthday
  17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Spot (small stuffed dog) and Big Dog (big stuffed dog)
  18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Pancakes
  19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday? Pizza
  20. What do you want to be when you grow up? Daycare provider

We plan to celebrate big this weekend with her friends!  Have a great weekend!

Weekend Recap

We had a great Memorial Day weekend spent camping at the Fremont Lakes!  We went down Friday afternoon and started off the weekend with a little fishing.


Danika caught one fish but it got off the line!  One of the families we were camping with brought a hammock and the kids LOVED it!


Saturday morning we headed home to get Danika ready for her dance recital.  Her dance studio only does a recital every two years and this was a recital year.  She did an amazing job and it was fun to watch her and all of the other dancers!




Ashton had a bit too much fun at the recital (or maybe it was the fact that he missed nap time 2 days in a row!) but this is what I saw less than 10 minutes after getting in the car after recital.


We headed back to the camper after the dance recital and hung out for the night and all day Sunday.  The boys did a little more fishing and all of the kids had fun swimming and playing.  Danika got to have a couple friends come spend the night in our camper so that was an extra fun bonus!



We loaded up and headed home late Monday morning and spent the day getting the house back in order, doing laundry, and planting most of our garden for the year.  We have a garden of mostly pumpkin varieties with a few vegetables thrown in.  Hopefully it does well!


We are gearing up for another busy week with softball games every night, and we get to celebrate Danika’s 9th birthday on Friday.  It’s going to be another fun, busy week!

5 on Friday

Instead of Friday Favorites today, I decided to do 5 on Friday….or rather “5 Thoughts Floating Around in my Head!”  I’m mentally (and physically) drained this week and feel like getting some thoughts out of my head might help me regroup…so I’m sorry if none of my post interests you today:)  It’s more for my sanity!


We’re only one week in to summer vacation at school, and I’m already questioning whether I made the right decision with summer daycare.  We typically have a high school girl come in and watch the kids at our house in the summer, but this year we decided to leave Ashton at the daycare he’s been going to and send the girls to the YMCA summer fun club.  Both of these are great programs and the kids love it there, but it kills me to get my kids out of bed every morning earlier than they have to for school so we can leave the house by 7:20 am….isn’t it supposed to be “summer vacation”?!?  I’m sure all working parents have been saying this for years, but this is the first summer it’s really affected us (in years past I’ve worked from home or only a couple days a week so summer schedule was always really lax).  Dealing with the wrath of my children at 6:30 am when they don’t get to bed until late because of summer commitments (ball, 4H pigs, etc) does not rank high on my fun meter!  I’m hoping we fall into a better routine as the summer goes on (at least I keep telling myself it will get easier, because it can’t get much more painful at my house this week)!


As I said, this are just random thoughts in my head.  I’ve been struggling with youth sports as of late, and really don’t know how it will all pan out.  I’ve encouraged Danika to play all sports available to her, because I think it’s good for kids to learn to play in a team atmosphere and take direction from someone other than parents.  This spring I will be the first to admit that I overcommitted her to the point of frustration for all of us.  She was so busy that she would have melt downs every night because she didn’t have any time to be a kid and I felt horrible about it.  I’ve promised her that I will not ever make her play a sport if she’s not 100% on board in the future.  She wanted to sign up for softball but we’re hitting the point where she’s not 100% committed so practices are a struggle….I don’t want her to quit because that’s not teaching her that she needs to follow through with her decisions.  I’m putting this in writing so when it comes time to sign up for fall sports, I can go back to this post and remind myself that I will not force her into anything!! 🙂


I’m super excited that camping season is finally here (see this post for some great camping recipes)!  We’re hoping to camp most of the weekend and I cannot wait to just relax…it’s nice being out at the campground and enjoying the outdoors, and then I don’t see all of the to do lists that keep growing at home!  It’s fun family time, and the kids always look forward to it.  Camping is one of my very favorite things about summer!


Danika has her dance recital this weekend and I always look forward to seeing her dance…she really enjoys dance and will be sad when this year is over.  I’m not sure if she’ll continue to dance next year or not, but regardless am so glad that she has found something she’s good at and that she loves doing.


I really want to sit down with the kids and write a summer to do list.  I think it would be fun to have a list of things they actually want to do this summer.  I envision this being both simple things (eat ice cream for supper, movie night, catch fireflies) and also items that require more planning (go on a camping trip to XYZ campground, have a play date with a friend, etc).  Letting all 3 kids have a say in our summer plans and also putting them in writing will help us accomplish at least most of the items on their summer fun list.  I’ll try to get that done in the next week or so and share it!


If any of you have any insight on summer daycare, youth sports, etc. I’d love to hear your feedback.  I’m on the struggle bus this week and need to reset as we go into June so that we can enjoy our summer…we need to find a happy balance of free time and commitments!  Enjoy your long weekend – I know we will!


Weekend Recap

Last week was cold and rainy for most of the week and the weekend was much of the same.  We had booked camping spots starting on Friday, but with the rain and cold weather we decided to hold off until the weather was a little warmer and dry.  Friday night Joe worked late and the girls were at my mom’s for the day, so he came home late and brought them with him, so Ashton and I enjoyed the quiet and hung out at home for most of the evening.

Saturday morning and had to go to Lincoln for a painting party to celebrate a 7 year old birthday (fun, wild time!) and then had to show acreage properties to a client for most of the afternoon.  We had talked about camping Saturday night but when I got done working it was still pretty drizzly out so we decided that pizza, a movie and popcorn were a better choice!  Apparently Ashton was extra excited as shown by his face:)


We start having softball games almost every night this week so Joe put some pork on the smoker so that we’ll have pulled pork for easy meals.  I love being able to use this for sandwiches, tacos, nachos, etc.


Sunday morning we packed up to go camping and headed out to enjoy the day.  We have our camp site through Memorial Day, so we’ll be out there on and off throughout the week (hopefully the weather cooperates).

Have a great week!

Friday Favorites

Today I’m linking up with Andrea and Narci to share my Friday Favorites!



On Monday, Jayde had her 1st grade field trip to the zoo, and I got to go along as a chaperone.  It was a hot one (90+ degrees) but we had a lot of fun anyway.  The misters along the sidewalk were our best friend after lunch!  It’s always a fun time to get to spend special one on one time with her!



We’ve started walking Danika’s 4H pigs daily this week, and that’s been a favorite of mine to watch her really enjoy doing it.  The first walking experience was an adventure, but it’s been really fun every other day.  We all find it kind of therapeutic to let them out and walk them around for 10 minutes each evening.  Danika does way better with them than the rest of us…we’ve decided it’s because of her calm personality.  They never take off running for her like they do for Joe and I – but I consider walking them a form of exercise, and having to run after them is just a way to burn a few extra calories:)



Summer vacation started for the girls on Wednesday – it’s crazy how fast the year went!  I now have a 2nd and 4th grader (and I think that makes me officially old!).  We can’t wait for late summer nights, lots of swimming and camping!


Jayde was awarded the Raider Award for her class – it’s an award given to just one kid in each class….she was so excited and we are so proud of the good student and classroom helper that she is!

We’re hoping the weather clears up this weekend so we can go camping again this weekend through Memorial Day.  It’s been a cold, rainy few days and it looks like it will continue for the next couple of days.  Have a great weekend!



Weekend Recap

We took the camper out for our first trip of the year this weekend!  The weather was perfect (again – we’ve been really lucky with great weather the past few weekends!).  We camped down at our lot by the river which is only about a mile from our house.  I was a little worried we’d be bored, but we definitely stayed busy while we were down there and were able to come home during the day on Saturday and get a few things done.  Here’s some pics from the weekend:






We came home on Sunday morning and ran to town to pick up a few vegetables to plant in the garden.  Joe sprayed something in our yard and garden last spring to kill weeds and we found out after the fact that our garden wouldn’t grow because of that spray, so we didn’t get to have a garden last year.  We’re going to test it out to see if the chemical is out of the soil this spring, and if my vegetables stay alive for a couple of weeks we will go ahead and plant our pumpkin varieties.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed that we will actually have a garden this year!


The kids all made me sweet homemade gifts for Mother’s Day, which was the best present ever!  Hope all of you mama’s out there had a great day/weekend as well!

Weekend Recap

We had another great weekend!  Friday night Danika had softball practice so we dropped her off and the littles and I ran to do some real estate work.  We got back to practice in time to play at the park for a bit and the weather was perfect!


After practice we went out for ice cream!  Apparently, no one except for Danika wanted to cooperate for a picture!


Saturday, we got to enjoy a day with no plans!  I ran some errands in the morning while the kids played at home.  After lunch, the girls decided to have a bike wash and clean up all of their bikes.  Joe and I sat and enjoyed the weather for a bit.


After Ashton’s nap, we headed down to our river lot to do a few things.  We ran into some friends and spent most of the afternoon there, and the kids had a blast playing with all of the kids – but my phone died so I failed to get any pictures!  When we got home, Ashton and I made rhubarb crisp with some rhubarb Joe brought home from work so we grilled out and had that for dessert!  It was delicious!



The kids thought they wanted to have a sleepover in Ashton’s room for the night, so it started like this….


….and then ended about 15 minutes later when arguing ensued about someone touching someone else and someone taking someones toys.  I could have called that one!

Sunday was my birthday so Joe and the kids made me breakfast and fun homemade cards and gifts.


I spent a little time doing blog work.


We had more softball practice in the afternoon and I had a church fundraiser meeting.  While I went to my meeting, Joe and the kids went fishing for a bit.

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I’ve been trying to eat healthy so I told the kids I wanted “carrot cake” for my birthday since it was healthy…meaning I would just put carrots on a plate and call it cake:)  They decided I should have real carrot cake so we grilled pizzas and had carrot cake to celebrate!  It was a great weekend with the family and I wouldn’t want to spend my birthday any other way!  We’re counting down until summer break – just a week and a half of school left!

Weekend Recap

It was a cold, rainy weekend in our part of the world (think 30 – 40 degrees cold!) so we spent a lot of it curled up indoors!  Friday night we celebrated Ashton’s 4th birthday with a family party.  The birthday boy loved his presents!  IMG_9250.jpg


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Ashton wanted to have his cousins over for a sleepover for his birthday, so after the party we had a sleepover!


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Silly Boys!

Saturday morning, the boys played for a while in the morning and I took Danika to her last volleyball game.  We spent the afternoon being lazy, and Danika went to a friend’s birthday party and sleepover.

Jayde came home from spending the night with her cousin and we had an easy dinner (chicken nuggets and tator tots) and watched a little TV.  I looked over and saw Jayde on the couch like this – I think she was tired!


Sunday, I did some meal prep for the week (I’m making an attempt at eating healthy again – we’ll see how it goes).  I spent some time working on blog posts, did some real estate work, and laundry.  Danika had another birthday party in the afternoon (this time a swimming party).

We ended the month of April on the couch as a family!  It was nice to have a pretty quiet weekend at home!