transportation unit

It’s that time of year ... time for the early schoolers to study the many types transportation we use.  {It seriously seems like only months ago that we were doing this field trip with Piper!}

In typical Wynter style, she was up at the crack of dawn ... this time dressed {in signature layers} and proudly announcing she was ready for her field trip!  So off we went ... mom, dad and Wynter ... no siblings allowed.  Which was actually pretty nice, we had a great time spending some one-on-one with little Wyntie and her classmates.

Anyhoo ... we drove to Kenosha to catch the Metra to Lake Forest.  Got a great seat on the double-decker and headed south.  Of course for the sake of schooling, we were advised to be pointing out all the buildings and architecture along the way ... but Wynter was most absorbed with watching the male mosquito dance his way across the window behind us.  {Did you know that the male mosquito does not have a proboscis, therefore can not suck your blood?  And that a proboscis is that little needle thing they put in your skin to suck your blood?  I didn’t until this morning.}

Back to the field trip ... so we arrive in Lake Forest to a beautiful, sunny morning.  Walk over to the infamous Egg Harbor Cafe for breakfast.  We sit with Ben and fam and chit-chat over pancakes {rainbow for Wynt}.

After breakfast, we head back towards the station area for a little bit of shopping before the train comes.  All the kids have been promised toys and are hyped up on m&m’s {which was the rainbow part of rainbow pancakes} ... so I let Curt partake in that activity while I check out Penny’s from Heaven ... a heavenly children’s boutique just happening to have a heavenly sale today!

Soon it’s time to catch the train back to Kenosha ... we’re lucky again to get a seat up top and settle in for the ride home.  Just one stop away from Kenosha, has us sitting there a little longer than usual.  Right outside our window we’re looking down at the conductor waving to the police car pulling into the stations parking lot.  “What’s happening?” Wynter asks.  Hmmmm, we’re not sure Wynt.  Then we see a man coming off the train and start being searched by the police.  “Why are they in that man’s pockets?” Wynter asks.  Hmmmm, we’re not sure Wynt.  “Why are they putting those things on that man’s hands?”  Hmmmm, we’re not sure Wynt.  “Why does he have to go in their car?”  Hmmmm, he must be getting a naughty ticket Wynter.  {She is very familiar with naughty tickets, as her daddy drives very fast and has alluded many a naughty ticket}.  So we finish a perfect study of the transportation unit with an arrest and drive to jail!

Thank you Wynter for spending the morning with us!

Click here for a few more photos of the field trip.


who doesn't love a butt shot?

We spent Memorial weekend in Exuma with the Stuart fam and had an awesome time!

The girls loved playing with Jack, although I think Jack loved playing with them more!  It was great fun watching him come out of his shell and into the wildness I call my children.

Curt has instilled such a spirit of adventure in these children ... my little starfish seekers, frog hunters, lizard catchers and nature lovers.  We are blessed to be in situations and surroundings that nurture this adventure in our children and I truly enjoyed seeing another child get captured by the beauty of nature.

I love everything about Exuma ... I have seriously considered taking a sabbatical there with my family.  It truly is a paradise and time somehow slows when we arrive.

One of my favorite things is the outdoor shower ... if you haven’t had an outdoor shower, it is a must-do before you leave this earth!  I got the shot above while taking our last outdoor shower before heading home.  I smile when I look at it ...

Click here for more photos of our trip.


hello elliot!

Taylor’s new buddy arrived tonight and she couldn’t wait to take him for a test drive!

Elliot is a 16 year old thoroughbred, he’s 16.1 hh and I think Taylor’s going to love him like crazy!

Click here for a few more photos.


a budding artist

Wynter drew this for me this morning.  She proudly handed it to me and announced this was ME when I was a baby.  Now, I’d have to verify with my mom, but I’m pretty sure I didn’t have that much hair, or the ability to use “jazz hands” at that early age!


good-bye kindermusik

Hunter and I are done with music class for this semester.  It was so much fun seeing her dance around and sing and ask for instruments.

At the beginning of each class we say hello to each child by singing to them ... they get to pick what activity they want to do ... Hunter’s favorite was to bounce.  Such a joy to see the transition from not saying anything, to the end of the semester when she actually said wanted to “bounce.”

Sing with me ... “it’s our time to bounce to hunter, our time to bounce to hunter, our time to bounce to hunter, bounce hello, hello ...”

We’ll see you again in the fall ...


mother's day

We took the girls out of school early on Friday to get down to Chicago in time for dinner.  A tad crazy for the six of us to find seats on the train, so Curt and I ended up sitting on the floor.  We had a great “snack guy” that was entertaining the kids ... so between him and movies on the ipod, we made it down in no time!

When we arrived, we went straight to dinner for some deep dish pizza.  45 minutes later the pizza arrived the kids were pretty much no longer interested in “the food that Chicago is most famous for.”  We made it to the hotel way past bedtime, but had some popcorn and movies anyway.  Dad agreed to put the little girls to bed while Taylor and I hit Michigan Ave for some shopping!

Curt spoiled us with a great suite at the Peninsula and really comfy beds!  The next morning we woke and went to breakfast at the hotel restaurant and then got ready for a day of touring the city.

First we went to the aquarium ... always a good time.  Although, newly aged teenager said it was boring!  She kept busy texting with her friends.  We saw all the fun fish stuff and then got super excited when we saw the sign for the 4D Sponge Bob show.  Which was not recommended for kids under 4.  I needed to ask and make sure I saw that correctly ... yes, highly recommended that kids under 4 do not see this show.  I was told they’ve seen many a 2 year old immediately leave the theatre after the show had started.  But I was certain MY two year old wouldn’t apply.  This is the same girl that watches SpyKids 3D!  What’s an upgrade to 4D have to do with it?!?  Well ... I didn’t exactly think that a stick would come out of the back of your chair and poke you, or water squirt in your face from the chair back in front of you, or the whole seat would shake you around, or air would blow from behind you and freak you out!  Sure enough, the show hadn’t been on for more than 2 minutes and my two year old was demanding to leave the theater.  Mine and ten others, whose parents obviously thought they weren’t raising wimps either!

After our Sponge Bob experience, we made our way to lunch ... a cute little restaurant where we were seated out on a balcony and overlooked part of the aquarium and we even had a bowl of goldfish to munch on!

We went back to the hotel for Hunter’s nap and some down time.  Then off to the Planetarium ... it was a quick stop, as I think we were all a little tired and not too interested in the skies over Africa (but in a really boring way).  Poor Piper was devastated when we were leaving, as she thought it was daddy’s favorite thing ever and that he would be sad we were leaving.

After that, we had dinner (YUM) at the Grand Luxe.  A quick walk and souvenir at the Disney Store and then a horse carriage ride around a few blocks of the city.

Sunday morning we woke up and were supposed to have brunch at the hotel restaurant at 10:30.  We usually eat breakfast at 7, so 10:30 was quite a stretch for us.  What was I thinking?  We ordered a quick room service meal of fruit and cereal, and as we were eating I asked who wanted to go home ... turns out we all did.  We quickly checked the train schedule, found out we needed to pack up and high-tail it to Union Station and hop our train home.  We made it home around 11:30 and somehow in time for lunch.  Taylor and I went to Mequon to look at a new horse for her (long story!!) and then met Curt at his sister’s house for a mother’s day dinner with his family.

Those were our events this weekend, of which I am very thankful.  But I would also like to thank God for the blessings he’s given to me.  My four girls ... and even my fifth baby girl that isn’t with us (but that I pray we will meet someday).  I thank God for Curt ... for what an awesome father and husband he is.  I thank God for the opportunities He’s given me ... the bad and the good.  And I thank God that I’ve been able to open my eyes to be aware of all the blessings around me.

I am blessed ...

Click here to view photos of our weekend.


a night at the musuem

The Prairie School works hard on a museum project each year.  This year’s theme was “Books Alive!”

Piper and Wynter each worked so hard on their respective projects with their class and it was awesome to see the fruits of their hard, creative labor.

Piper’s class had a Dr. Seuss theme working and had all kinds of things they did.  Piper loves creating so it was right up her alley.  She was even a docent for a short time that evening.

Wynter worked especially hard on a construction project with her third grade buddy, Olivia.  I can’t remember the book they created their house from, but it was a “dark” plot and no wonder Wynter hasn’t been sleeping!

Daddy had a Board dinner and Taylor was riding.  They sure missed a good time!

Pardon the blurry photo above, one of Wynter’s teachers took it for us, so I wasn’t going to complain.  Click here to see more photos from the night.


birthday flight

Happy 53rd Birthday Curt!!  He said he had a good one ... his day started with a routine jog, followed by his birthday present (a portrait painting of Piper & I).  When the girls woke up they gave him their presents and then we were all off to start our days, while Curt spent a peaceful day working from home with the doggies.

After school we took dad to his fav of all time eateries ... McDonald’s!  And then headed to the airport for our final flight in the Carnauba.  The plane will be decommissioned on May 12th, so he wanted to take the girls up for one last ride.

Click here to see photos.