Category Archives: Random Family Fun

Since last we met <3

The parents of this collection of cuties celebrated their 13th wedding anniversary yesterday so we had an overnight on Sunday to give them a little time to eat dinner that didn’t involve fifteen trips to the bathroom and at least one meltdown over having to share a fry with someone.

And as darling as they are right here…I do have to once again give kudos to young parents in the trenches because this…

was what their first response to “Sit down together so I can take a picture of you and send to mommy and daddy” looked like.

So here are the reality pics of the event…just the highlights…

After we made the trek to the park playground, we had to stop by the water tower so everyone could do whatever it is boys feel the need to do with a large white painted tower and yes…the paint does rub off on your hands…thank you Wet Wipes for once again saving us.

We had another one of our fancy patio party dinners.

Imitation Orange Dye is a food group, right?

If so, we are good on our RDA.

Monday morning we hit up Dunkin Donuts, which all three boys proclaimed to be the best Dunkin Donuts Shop in the whole world. So … we have that going for us now.

This is how they entertained themselves when I said surely they could stand still along the wall of the post office while I worked with the guy behind the counter to get a package mailed.

They were so entertaining for the people waiting behind us that the post master handed out suckers to them and to the people in line.

We went to the zoo and scared the living daylights out of the animals with our enthusiasm.

I may have to have knee surgery after crouching down for this picture and everyone thought I said, “Dog pile on Lola!!!”

We grabbed some lunch at the McDonalds over by our old house and I started crying because it was like fifteen minutes ago I sat at this table with their mom, Tia and Uncle John saying basically the same things I said yesterday…but still…best days ever are best days ever even when you need a jumbo diet Coke just to stay awake <3

And finally this classic shot because E. M. M. E. T. T. has met his match.

This one finagled a toy away from him and then followed him around doing this for quite some time.

What you can’t see or hear is her making the cheesiest smile and saying….Emmmmeeeettttttttt… she held the toy tight to her chest.

Oh the irony.

Have a great Tuesday and check back tomorrow <3

A slice of my life lately <3
pc/Rachel <3

Yes, I know.

We could just stop right here and be good for the day.

It’s been a busy weekend and I am headed out the door asap for a much needed redo of the hair upon my head so here’s some randoms and some pictures that I think are sweet, pretty or both…enjoy or go do your own thing and have a blessed day <3

On Saturday we made a trip to St Louis for a fun day of family and going to the Cardinal game. As I snapped this photo out the window on the way to the stadium, our middle daughter may have made a snarky comment about it’s good I finally have a picture of the Arch…ok…it gets me every time and yes…always the tourist wherever I go.

We had a great time at the game…

and got home to catch a few winks and then did Sunday.

Monday morning, we were up bright and early so I could meet up with this one…

and head to Chicago on Amtrak to shop for clothes for her amazing store.

We had a great time and much success and I am thinking of doing a short series on what I have learned in my first full year of doing this little clothing concession in her store (would you be interested????)

But to finish out…I think the walk from Union Station to the Mart is one of the prettiest so please enjoy…

These flower boxes line the way and they are incredible <3

The commuters were particularly tickled with me stopping to snap pictures…insert smile…

and finally…

Gets me every time.

Have a great day!

Come back tomorrow for some thoughts on No Other Gods.

Group hug.

Now get out there and make the most of Tuesday <3

Summer and the living is busy <3

Hey you all…I didn’t forget you.

I didn’t fall off the face of the earth.

It’s just been non-stop since the last firecracker burst over our heads and we applauded and packed up our lawn chairs…so here is a mini-recap and then I need to swallow some coffee and put my suitcase in the car because we are on to the next deal.

So Friday after we work we brought this one for a solo overnight.

I was worried he would miss his siblings but rest assured…he was fine-aroonie being an only child.

When we got to the house, he disappeared and I found him unpacking his essentials in “his room.”

I told him we were not eating that candy and gum and he told me he knew…he just wanted to look at it.


On Saturday we took him home, filled with all kinds of unhealthy food and all that candy and gum in a ziplock bag, because I do have some standards with them.

More ball games…and then off to meet this one and her fella for our annual “twin birthday”…

If you are going to share a birthday with someone…she’s the one to do it with.

So fun.

On Sunday…

Church…quick change and then….

We hung out with the crew during various ball practices and ate between games at a fancy restaurant…

Where watching them put paper cars together and wear these hats…

never. gets. old.

Then it was back to the ball park for another game…

We have sung “Take me out to the ballgame” so many times, even Caroline knows it….

Yesterday I went to a little town south of here with friends for a day of shopping and by shopping I mean…

So there you have it.

A whirlwind of sugar, fast food and little sleep.

Sounds like the prefect summer storm.

Hope you are doing well as we ride this summer roller coaster out.

Blessings and I will check in with you from the road <3

Weekend was so full…so fun…all the emojis <3


I didn’t write on Friday because I got to go to a Cub’s game.

My first one ever.

People ask me if I am a Cubs or Cards fan..well…we always gravitated to St Louis when the kids were little and then our daughter married a Cub fan and I grew up watching the Big Red Machine back in the days of Johnny Bench and Pete Rose so basically I am just a fan of baseball.

Mostly because it is a quiet game that moves at a pace and with a level of strategy that my mind can wrap around.

So whatever game I attend…the hometown of that team is my team for that day.

My motto is…buy the shirt…enjoy the people watching…eat some over-priced unhealthy food and embrace the moment.

And this beautiful stadium is incredible.

This one and Fenway have found a place in my heart <3

The Cubs lost, but we had a great time.


On Saturday we attended a birthday celebration for Caroline’s second…Graham’s eight…and Emmett’s sixth…

Since getting together has to be squeezed in between ball games, vacations and work they had a three-birds-with-one-stone party…no…that wasn’t the theme…

boys had dinosaurs and Caroline had her beloved Minnie Mouse <3

and it was all hands on deck and still a few who couldn’t be there.

This little dude was a trooper and just celebrated everybody else with a smug smile knowing he shares his birthday with No. One.

Tia made it so we got another pic of the ladies…

and if you are curious if Caroline has managed to wrap her dad around her little finger…

done and done…


This is genius.


This is stuck on my desk next to my computer.

I have no idea why.

I have looked at all our calendars and nothing is written down on that day.

If I made an appointment with you, I have forgotten it.

I’m sorry.

Hebrews 3: 12&13

This is my “why” for getting on here as many of the five weekdays as I can.

It’s a way God has opened for me to make someone laugh or smile or think or feel like they are not alone.

It’s a way to remind us that life is hard, but God is always good…it is not a cliche or something to put on a bumper sticker or t-shirt and then forget.

Write it on your heart and engrave it in your mind … He is faithful.

We are flawed people and we live in a fallen world and in spite of it all, He loves us and provided a way for us to be in relationship with Him through His Son Jesus Christ.

Encourage someone … or at least yourself today…with the truth of that statement.

You are loved <3

That day we took the circus to the zoo….<3

I really had not intended to share this on the blog for two reasons.

One reason is I feel I have overexposed our family on social media recently with all the get-togethers we have pulled off this summer.

And second, I didn’t take the crew on a field trip with a blog post in mind…but we had such a great time I want to give a shout out for the wonderful set up for families to have an adventure day in Peoria and they were so stinking cute and good, I can’t help but share some pictures.

Since the forecast was for a cool, rainy day and I was going to be with this bunch from 8:30 to 5:00, I asked if I could take them to Peoria and visit their children’s museum. It is called the Peoria Playhouse and I can’t say enough good things about it.

Set up in what appears to be a large cabin-like house, the play areas are fantastic and fun and safe and made for kids to interact with other kids.

Things like a construction site where they could operate two different vehicles and load and unload super soft but realistic bricks and rocks…a hen coop…milk a cow where real water sprayed into a bucket…a huge kinetic sand box set up on what is a glassed in porch area.

If the idea of a children’s museum with one, let alone four children, freaks you out – this one is ideal. The play areas are designed in contained ways so that you don’t have panic moments where you have to leave the 99 to go find the one and fear you will now lose the 99…not that I have ever done that in a children’s museum..or back yard…or Chick Fil’a…or…the dinner table.

The Playhouse sits across a park area from the Peoria Zoo and there are several amazing playgrounds and picnic areas dotting the park along with ample parking.

As God smiled on us, the Zoo was having a free day and since I had only planned to spend an hour or two at the museum and hadn’t packed a lunch, yet discovered we could camp out for a week in the museum and not stop having fun…we decided to take advantage of a somewhat non-rainy spell and walk over to get food at the zoo.

The choices were a restaurant with pizza and hot dogs and such or lunchables at the gift shop.

The unanimous and enthusiastic win was the lunchables…who knew…

So a mere $20 later and with a bag full of processed food we headed over the indoor picnic area to set up our buffet…

And if you want to pin this to your “Summer Entertainment Ideas” board, please feel free.

As we ate the skies opened up again…

so we thanked God for perfect timing, ate, talked and waited until the deluge subsided and then made our way back to the museum with a slight detour in some of the fun climbing exhibits.

We did more exploring and playing…

and drenching our already soaked clothes with more chemically treated water.

And when we were so wet that someone’s diaper had increased triple its size, we headed out to the van and did a wardrobe change and then decided we needed to go back to the zoo which is pretty incredible.

There are beautiful habitats housing some impressive creatures like a rhinocerous, giraffe family and zebras and including…

Simba and Nala…yes…that is not a mural…those are two real, live lions and yes…we did roar at them…repeatedly.

It was indeed a best day ever.

It was spontaneous…it cost a little cash…and it wasn’t without bodily injuries of the toddler kind.

It wasn’t well-planned, nor was stylish attire required.

It was loud and wildly fun and for me, who tends to talk herself out of trying new things…it was amazing to just watch them go at their pace and make our decisions and see them care for each other as they navigated an unfamiliar place and made it their own…

I am thankful for it and thankful if you had fun sharing it with us.

I really hope for each of you some summer delights that catch you by surprise and refresh your soul.

You are loved <3