It’s November and I suck.

First off – why does this make me laugh? Am I a bad person?


Anyway. Yeah sorry, loser alert.  I have blown off The Blog, which is not normally my thing but as of late has become my thing (a little disconcerting, from someone who has regularly blogged on different blogging platforms for about 10 years now).  Kids are hard!  Toddlers who need constant supervision otherwise once you turn your back for 10 seconds to glance at the clock and ponder over A Thing You Need To Do Later they will take that opportunity to crawl up onto the arm of the couch with a full tub of raisins and jump, only to crash to the floor head-first and fling raisins into every last square inch of floor space of your living room (a living room with a nice thick carpet, because OF COURSE WHY NOT), those toddlers are hard.  Energetic six-year-olds that have curious questions about every last thing their eyes peep, they are work, too. So therefore, the blog has taken a bit of a hiatus.


No worries, though, I have already made plans for New Years Resolutions that involve WAY MOAR BLOGGING, so it’s all gonna be okay. I promise.


Shut up Dawson.

So anyway!  I thought I would do an update but I really don’t have a whole lot to say other than: fall.  Stuff.  I didn’t really get out my camera very much lately, and I’m sorry.  I barely have time to pick up the camera anyway, with all the other junk going on.  I did manage to get Linus outside to do his favorite fall activity, play in the leaves, and while it was still (almost unsettlingly so) warm enough to do so without jackets.


(So happy to see me, that child.)


Then the kiddos had some play time together while I cleaned. Which pretty much sums up the past few weekends, honestly: cleaning, cleaning, cleaning.  Gotta get ready for the winter, my friends!  We shut up all the storm windows for about the 3rd time this fall (always a false start on the cold weather, it seems), vacuumed the dust bunnies from the forgotten corners, busted out all the flannel bedding, and moved around furniture.



And I put up the Christmas decorations, kinda.  They are out but not really “out” and ready to go.  Could not help myself. The holiday season is short this year and shortly we will be doing our 9-day trek around Kansas, so I want to be ready for the holidays when we get home.  Respect the Turkey, Schmespect the Shmurkey. As I wise friend herself said: I can absolutely enjoy a good bit of turkey while admiring my pretty Christmas tree.



That’s it, my friends.  Lots of work catch-up to do this week, extra workouts to counteract all the over-eating we will do over Thanksgiving, and kids with chest colds means: not a lot of free time. I’m signing off and hopefully can watch an episode of Call The Midwife in bed before falling asleep all slack-jawed.


Shut up.



Trick or Treating, 2015

Friday we hit up a nearby shopping area for their annual Trick-or-treating bash. Saturday was supposed to rain, so we treated it as if it would be the only run (for Linus at least; Pete don’t let no rain slow him down).

Linus only wore his Ewok hoodie thingie while at home, he ripped it off his head as soon as we got there and insisted on wearing my hat instead. But of course. I am sure some people were trying to figure out what the bear-suit-with-brewery-hat was supposed to be.


I wanted to go shopping at about half the stores, but the kids were in and out too fast for me to get too far at Madewell or Anthro or Kate Spade, dammit. I did get a free mommies-only “goodie” at L’Occitane, so at least that was something.


Saturday it poured down rain, POOOOOOURED. Linus was up at the late hour of 6am (much preferable to 4am, trust), it was raining.  I cleaned up the kitchen and did some laundry, still raining.  Went to spin class at 7:30a, still raining.  Got home, did housework, played Legos, made perler bead stuff, played garbage trucks (here I admit: so out of my league playing boy stuff, thank goodness the toddler one is too young to realize this), nap over, afternoon snack over, crockpot prepped and all the chores done, etc. etc.

Still. Freaking. Raining.

But then!  Then!  It finally… stopped. Even though the weather people said it would keep a’going.  So we tossed on our costumes and grabbed buckets and AWAY WE WENT FOR SOME CAAAAAAAAANDYYYYYY.



Pete was so excited to give out candy, but alas – his baby brother was the only one to knock on our door this year. So now I am left with 8 billion calories in a bowl staring me down every second of every day. I think I might need to make some cookies for work. Or just drop the whole load on the office, that would work too.

Aaaaand that’s all I’ve got. Have a great week, all, and will see you again soon. Hopefully not 10 lbs. heavier.

Oh! And PS – go ROYALS!


Kind of a Week in Review Oct. 25


It’s been a potluck of a week, people.  We’ve hung out mostly indoors, thanks to random rainy days (wet leaves and mud all over errrrrthang, I mean I like to think of myself as a free-spirit parent but – nope, you’re not playing in the yard, because: NNNOPE). Pete and I made rice-krispie brains one day, that was fun.  I finally forced myself to watch Fruitvale Station, after two years of waffling because I thought it would make me cry, because damn that Michael B. Jordan (I hate crying. Especially over something like a movie). And yep – cried. Got me right in the Feels. Big baby crying. It’s awful but necessary viewing.

I got soups and beans and bread dough prepped and into the deep freeze, just in time for winter.  Or actually: just in time for the element in our oven to catch on fire and then melt away into molten metal bits all over the oven floor, which happened on Saturday afternoon. You know, AFTER we had done the weekly grocery shopping. For a whole bunch of oven-necessary meals. 

The part is on order and until then: all those meals I planned and purchased for, ALL THOSE OVEN MEALS, they are on hold. Might be thawing out those soups earlier than planned.


No fear on the weather though, it was nice/dry enough for raking by week’s end.  So at least there’s that.


It was a pretty busy weekend – Pete’s hip-hop studio has an annual Halloween party, he decided he wanted to do one of the workshops and attend the big evening party, so we signed him up.

Then Saturday he and Linus decided that 4 o’clock in the freaking morning was a good time to get up and start the party.

Scott let me get in a short nap (good man) and he and Linus both got a little nap, and Linus took one more loooooong nap, but – Pete hung in there all day, saying he felt fine. Shockingly: he was pretty darn exhausted by the evening.  He was excited to get dressed up (and add random unnecessary makeup, because: sure, Star Wars commanders need scars and tattoos, why the hell not).  He was excited to hit the studio.  He… lost all steam by the end of the workshop and barely dragged through the party.  Whoops.  


Welp, at least Linus had a rockin’ time.  He even got up and joined the Big Dance at the end.  Pete was pretty much prone on the floor half-asleep by that point.


Sunday was Boo at the Zoo! Actually they don’t call it that here, but you know: that Halloween thing that all zoos do. The lines were insane, and this year we kinda said, “screw it”. We hit up a few of the shorter lines for some candy, but skipped most of them and just enjoyed ourselves. Watched the gibbons open their Trick or Treat bags, watched the bears eat the honey off the glass in their exhibits, watched the meerkats just be awesome meerkats. Several cosplay groups show up, so we sought out all the Star Wars characters we could find. It was about a million times more fun that way, you guys. Screw the candy, we’ll get enough of that later.




And that kinda sums things up! The kids both have parties at daycare/school, then a neighborhood thing, then the actual Halloween date… Busy week ahead. Hang in there, all y’all, and we’ll chat again soon. Peace out.


Fondy + Pumpkin Patchin’

Guess what. Guess. No, guess. Really.

OH YES YOU GUYS IT’S FALL AND THEREFORE PUMPKIN TIME! I am not really a pumpkin-spice latte/scone/pancakes/cereal/salad/nut mix/ravioli/cream cheese/chips kinda person (that’s just a sampling of the different pumpkin-spice things at Trader Joes right now, by the way, oh yes even bagged salad mix), but lordy I am all about going to the patch and getting a nice big ole pumpkin. So when we woke up one weekend and there were no plans and the air was deliciously crisp and cool, I deemed it PUMPKIN PATCH WEEKEND OF AWESOME, YAASSSSSSSSSSS.

Moose’s reaction was a bit more subdued. Shockingly.


Whatever you big ole grump, you can’t rain on my pumpkin parade!

So anyway, it was time to get the pumpkins. We found this place that was supposed to be the Top O’ The Line in the world of pumpkin patches, but it was a wee bit north. We hesitated for a minute, but then decided what the hell, you only live once, why not drive out 45 minutes for a pumpkin. (Actually that sounds a little crazy dumb when I type it, but this patch had lots of ACTIVITIES, and that was more what we were going for anyway, so shush.)

As it so happens, this particular patch was only about 20 minutes south of Fond du Lac, which was the town where I grew up. So I coerced my dear sweet long-suffering husband into heading that way first. We didn’t have a ton of time to screw around, so we pretty much just drove through town, hit up Lakeside park, had a quick bite to eat, drove past my childhood home… A few hours tops, barely a blip, but I’m glad we did it.

It’s weird going back to Fondy. So much has changed, and I don’t know my way around anymore. I was struggling to remember street names and major intersections, and then we’d drive past a street corner and oh my goodness, but it triggered major memories because it still looked exactly as it did when I was a kid. Kinda trippy.


It was damn cold off the lake – it was in the 40s, and insanely windy. By the time we got to the top of the lighthouse, we regretted not having gloves (Pete was the only prepared one). Needless to say, we didn’t stay there terribly long.






That’s my childhood home in the picture above, the brown one. We only lived a few blocks off the lake, so it was easy to do a sneaky ninja drive-by. Very different, they re-did all the landscaping in front and changed the front porch area. I mean, it’s been like 20 years, so that’s obviously not shocking, but anyway. Also our bright-orange door is gone, FOR SHAME PEOPLE.

We ‘lunched’ at Salty’s. We didn’t actually lunch – had a big breakfast and it was 11am-ish so kinda early to have an actual lunch, but we knew we’d be at the Patch for several hours, through the meal, so we stopped for appetizers. Salty’s is a seafood place right off the lake, and has been there forever. It has this random Florida-beachy theme which is so random and outdated that it’s kitschy. And the food is actually good! So we got the seafood appetizer platter and went at it.



After that: off to Waldvogel’s Farm. PUMPKINS!

This place, you guys. It’s huge. There are 25 muthah-effing activities for the kids. TWENTY-FIVE. Train rides, spooky haunted houses, slides, petting zoo, a maze, swings, bouncy things, two separate car tracks… We started with the train ride, then worked our way around the grounds.


That scarecrow by the toilet, I just die. I swear it was set up to look like it’s using the toilet, but when we got closer it was pushing a plunger down the toilet bowl. Ooookay.

Anyhoo: there were this giant bouncy animal pen and the boys loved that, we spent a huge chunk of time there. The place has so much to do – we didn’t fit it all in and we spent over 3 hours playing. Definitely worth the drive, you guys.





We finished our visit by actually getting our pumpkins. Hayride, YES! Pumpkin patch, YES!



Pete found a massive pumpkin. It’s huge, you guys. He wants to paint it, and I’m fine with that because lordy, if I had to gut that thing I’d be scraping it out up to my armpit. Ew.

So anyway: that was our visit. I think this might be an annual thing because for real, our kids both passed out in the car and they slept like the dead that night. Total win.

Okay that concludes our annual trek for pumpkins.


Moose – Two


The Moose Man, The Big Beef, Leee-nooos the Moose – this child just turned the Big T.W.O.


I can ignore this fact thanks to his fatness.  Still sitting pretty at the 100%-ile for his age, which I guess is not so much a bragging point when you have a toddler, but still: it means I can still pretend he’s barely out of babyhood. He’s a toddler with cheeks for daaaaays.  And wrist dents. And long lashes. I mean who needs a whiny, hateful, sleepless baby anyway, amirite?  Bring on the toddlerhood, huzzah!



Anyway.  He’s two, you guys.  Which is kind of my favorite age, I am not even lying, so I’m happy to see this day come.  He’s bossy, like whoa.  Sassy and bossy and sometimes mean, but he gets so very regretful once he realizes he hurt your feelings, and grabs your face in those grubby mitts of his to bestow you with kisses, so all is forgiven.  (I mean, except when he’s up at 5am, which happens way too often, then I am still pretty pissed at him.)


His daycare was closed for a few days this week, so I went ahead and took sick days (he and I both were rocking colds, so it was warranted).  We snuggled while we watched Mighty Machines and got a lot of freezer meals squirreled away. We also took off for the conservatory down the street, long walks on chilly mornings collecting leaves and sticks and wondering over bugs and throwing rocks into the creek. He sneaked a Matchbox car in his jacket pocket and would take it out to carefully drive along the logs, funny little engine noises included._DSC4696rt


He loves all vehicles – mostly the big ones.  Trucks of all kinds, trains of all kinds, buses, farm machinery, you name it.  Garbage trucks have a special place in his heart.  He will eat the shit out of a bowl of yogurt, devours broccoli with relish, and can polish off a big tub of raisins in a matter of days, all by himself.  And all the sugary bad stuff as well, of course, especially”cooooooookaaaaaaaayz”.

He’s got a lot to say at home but in public is a very quiet kid, not so much shy as just likely to be a very private sort when he grows up.  He’s a happy kiddo, but quietly so. He makes a lot of facial expressions and gestures that remind me of my dad, and that makes me happy.


He is so funny, all toddler that kid.  Somewhat coordinated and full of bravado and self-assured in that way only a 2 year old can be. He’s also a straight-up menace. This is the kid who has legit made me into a light sleeper; he has been known to get up at the wee hours of the morning to empty the pantry or flush random things down the toilet. Turn your back on him for a second and he’s going to find some way to break, spill, throw, or bulldoze something over.

Also he is slowly coming around to his mother, but mostly just likes to torment me for the fun of it. His favorite is at bedtime – every night Scott tells him to go tell his mommy ‘good night’, and that fat pajama-d thing walks up to me, pushes me, and tells me “GO AWAY MOM”. Then on cue I make my signature Sad Face. He waits a beat or two, giggling, then he screams JUST KIDDING I KISS I KISS and plants a big smacker on me.

Such a brat. I wish I could freeze him at this age for at least another 5 years.


Happy birthday, Moose man. Never slow down. Never change. (Well, maybe be less destructive and sassy. But otherwise: no.)

See also: One.


October-ish update

Sooo where were we when I last touched this thing? Early September or something? Yeah that seems about right…

I swear I did not ignore this blog on purpose, it just organically happened with the start of school, learning bus schedules and new schools and after-school activities and new commutes and blah blah BLAAAAAH.  You know, the normal stuff we all go through.  Anyway, I apologize profusely and promise I have a handle back on things now.  A little bit of catch-up images below, just things we’ve been up to the past month-ish.

And it’s long and fuuuuuull of pictures, there’s your warning.

So! Moose’s daycare had a picnic around mid-September.  It was looooovely, and Pete got along smashingly with all of Linus’ daycare buds.  Pete played with them and Linus contently played football by himself. Typical.


Linus worked on that time-honored childhood tradition of licking metal window screens.


Mah birrrrrfday! The boys took me out for a rare-beer tasting at the restaurant down the street, then a low-key celebration at home. My kinda birthday. Especially now that I’m staring down the barrel of FORTY YEARS OF OLD PERSON. That’s okay though, my mid-life crisis blue hair surely fools people into thinking I’m still only 20 (…right?). Also I am trying to emulate Gwynnie and have the ass of a 22-year-old stripper by 40. I’m… well, I’m certainly nowhere near that. But it’s gotta be the butt of at least an mid-30-something, thanks to all those spin classes + squats. So there’s that.


Yeah sorry I’m not giving a butt picture (mainly because all y’all will laugh that I called it the butt of maybe a 30-something-ish person).

We had the celebratory cake, which also doubled as a birthday cake for dear old Scott (who got a Chicago trip out of his birthday, we just didn’t announce the birthday-part too loudly because he’s less excited than me about almost being 40. Probably because his hair isn’t blue).


I… baked and pickled some stuff?  I’ll be honest I put some of these images in this post forever ago and can’t remember why.  And I’m too lazy to take them out.  But do know that these freaking chocolate-chip blondies, pictured directly below, are the damned devil and will add about 5 pounds to your frame.  Because you’ll inhale the entire pan before the day is done.  That however does not stop me from making them on the regular.



Pretty sure I only prepped/posted these because I thought his hair looked funny that day. Yep.


Here are some of the boys getting along smashingly. Moose has finally taken down his guard and fully embraced his brother’s weirdness. And WHAT DO YOU KNOW, IT TURNS OUT MOOSE HIMSELF IS ALSO A WEIRD PERSON. They play together almost nonstop at home now.

Anyway, this realization and acceptance has led to him actually being randomly affectionate towards him. Weird.




We took a trip up North-ish a bit and stopped at Fondy, where I was born and raised. More on that another time.


Also hit up a pumpkin patch. Also more on that later…



It’s been really warm here! Almost unnerving. We’re supposed to get an unseasonably warm/drier winter, and hey – not complaining. Thank you, El Nino. It feels weird to be decorating for Halloween while the temps are the mid 70s though I won’t lie.




I shot some photos for my friend Marta on her wedding day, and while at the ceremony location (a CAAAAAVE) I gots myself a pretty new rock.


BTW, Moose had a birthday… (Oh yeah, you know you’re getting more on that shizz later.)






Other than that: we randomly lost power one night and Pete melted a hole in our TV with a candle, I permanently scarred my child by taking him out to see that blood supermoon, and Linus learned to say “dammit”. Which: I think brings you up to speed on things.


Have a great week my friends – many, many more posts to come, I promise.


Peter – Six

AS USUAL! This is woefully late, please forgive me. I shot the photos and wrote it four months ago you guys, FOUR. MONTHS. AGO. I tossed all the video clips in a folder and confidently told myself it’d take me an evening at most to figure out the new movie-maker software. Ha. Hahahahahahahaha. So I finally just sat down last night and sweated it out and got the thing somehow cobbled together, finished by 2am. And yeah, as per my usual video mastery, it’s a little wonky with repeated clips and weird cuts. I care not. It’s finished and done before Moose’s birthday hit. GO ME I TOTALLY DESERVE A BEER.

Anyhoo – on with the show.



Everyone tells you that there is That Year where they go from little to Big in a blink. And for Pete, this was that year.

My mop-headed shorty is now not-so-shorty, and suddenly has very passionate opinions. He can side-eye, he questions my judgement sometimes, he tries to soothe me when he knows I’m stressed. He weighs his options and makes wise (or unwise…) choices.  He is calm in most situations, much moreso than I ever was at that age. He gets that even-keel personality from his daddy, thank goodness.


This year he grew gangly limbs. His precious springy curls have softened to a soft wave, darker too, now that his unruly Boy Hair is completely in. He has zippy foot races with his friends and loves to dance hip hop and is way more coordinated than I ever expected him to be at this point.

And while all of that is normal and nice and everything, it also is crazy weird. When, my little child, did you get so darn big?


Anyway, you guys. Enough of that. What’s happened this year? Lots. LOTS. He’s still very sensitive, and because of that we’ve had a rough year. He started Kindergarten, then we quickly switched back to pre-K. His teacher was really worried about his stress levels. After a long meeting with the principal and teachers one afternoon, we picked him up from the AfterCare room and then gently broke the news to him in the car as we left: maybe it would be good to go back to Pre-K. He was his usual Peter self, optimistic, immediately seeing the positive in the move. Sure, he would love to be an Older Kid Helper for his pre-K teacher! It’ll be fun! And he missed Miss Theresa anyway, this is a great idea and he couldn’t wait to tell her he’d be back, oh man she’ll be so excited! And then once things were settled, and Scott and I confidently went back to an adult conversation in the front, distracted by dinner plans and other random crap, I heard him say softly, sadly from the back seat, all to himself:

“But I am not stupid.”

OMG you guys, just: Parenthood. Parenting can be some real shit sometimes.


But! It really was the best option. He grew, he flourished. Hip hop class was something I signed him up for on a whim and it proved to be a saving Grace. He came out of the Kindergarten situation insecure and anxious, and his hip-hop teacher brought out his confidence and a drive in him I have never seen.

He’s so creative, and seems to have a good head for numbers. He can make friends with anyone in an instant, it’s always shocking to me (introvert that I am) how well he can put a stranger at ease. Happy, charming Peter. He also questions lots of things, which is kinda infuriating. But hey, now we can now have real, actual conversations, which is also rather nice.

He loves all things mustard-y, vinegar-y, and sour. We’ve been sneaking a little more heat into our dishes, and if he isn’t told it’s in there he eats it with relish. He adores anything mint, which is funny because neither Scott nor I are particularly fond of mint-flavored things. He was pretty pumped to order his Creme de Menthe birthday cake this year. Halloween is his favorite holiday. Star Wars and Minecraft are his latest obsessions. Jayhawk Crimson and Blue are his favorite colors (because: good boy).


And while he still loves cats, he is fine with leaving Momo in his room all day. Sometimes he loses him, maybe forgotten overnight in the living room or left in his backpack, neglected in a corner of the basement playroom… Those things have happened more than once. He doesn’t really notice. Gets me in the Feels, him outgrowing Momo, but hey: that’s life. And Momo can come live with me when the time comes I am totally cool with that.


Happy birthday, bubs.  Can’t wait to see what the next year brings.

See also: Five. Four. Three. Two. And One.


Apple Pickin’ 2015

Hit the orchard a few weeks ago to stock up on the Redmax (they ripen earlier in the apple season). It was pretty warm that day, so it felt a little weird to be up at the orchard picking apples, but from the looks of things it’s going to be a rather warm fall, so whatever I can roll with it.

We picked and munched and finally filled our bag, then hit the road back home. After stopping at their general store for ice cream, anyway.





Note the pan of tator tots in front of that gal in the photo above (!). That is Baller Level of picnic at the orchard, in my opinion.

Have a great day, friends.


Labor Day 2015 – Chicago

We went to Chicago over Labor Day this year.  Last time we were in the City was a year ago, we really need to make an effort to go more often because there’s lots to do and it’s a quick little trip.

We only had to stop once on the way down this time, and it was a quickie stop at that, so we made it in about 2.5 hours.  Not bad, considering our squirrely kids.


Our first Chicago stop was the Northcenter neighborhood. We popped into Half-Acre, sampled some beer and had a little picnic. Then walked around a little to get a feel for the area – it’s a super cute neighborhood.


I have a confession to make: my baby is a beer-sniffer. He loves to smell it, I know that sounds weird but he is really into it and gets pretty pissed off if we don’t comply. And he takes deep, loud whiffs, you guys. We always let him get a good smell when we have a fresh pour, and yeah – we watch him carefully when we have a beer around. Because he’s a sneaky, curious little thing.


Then we headed to the Museum of Science and Industry, which is always a hit. Moose loves Mighty Machines, so to say he was in heaven would be an understatement. We split up after an hour, and each took a kid. Scottie and Moose checked out all the vehicles and spent a good chunk of time in the Boeing 727.

Oh and they each got a Mold O Rama. I have another confession to make: I love to sniff freshly-made Mold O Ramas. So I was a nice mama and I held (and took deep whiffs) of their freshly molded thingies.



Pete and I explored the physical sciences for the longest time, and he got to see a working Tesla Coil (they fire it off every half hour), which was the part he was most looking forward to. To be honest he was scared before it went off, knowing it would be loud, but I coaxed him into watching. Definitely worth it.


After that we made our way to the Loop, checked into our hotel (Moose was obsessed with the shower), and hunted down some grub. A Sunday night in the West Loop over a holiday weekend = everything was closed. Errrrrrrr-thang, even most of the fast food. Our options were Giordano’s, or a few random fast-food joints. We decided not to tourist-it-up with the rest of our fellow tourists (also: did not want to wait 1-2 hours for pizza) and instead wandered until we found the next open ‘restaurant’ – Red Robin. No shame. It tasted GOOOOOD.




We got the kids ready for bed, and SHOCKER they were too excited to sleep, so Scottie and I hid in the bathroom at 10p and toasted his birthday with cheap Trader Joes Prosecco. That’s how you Adult, my friends.


The next morning we got up and strategized our day over breakfast. We had a set rate for 24 hours in our parking garage, so we decided to check out of the hotel, toss our stuff in the car, and head down to Millenium Park. Take advantage of our full 24 hours, you know? Except out of habit, neither of us batted an eye when we paid for our spot before throwing our luggage in the car… Ooops. You have 15 minutes to exit the garage after paying, so we decided to split up. Considering we now had to pay for more parking, we decided Scott would take the car to find a new parking garage closer to the museum campus, and I’d walk the boys down to Millenium Park on my own, then we’d meet up there.

I only walked in the wrong direction once and righted myself pretty quickly (I walked out of that garage thinking I was going east, but nope: north. Whoops), so I was proud of myself. I pretty much suck at directions but Chicago is easy to maneuver, that helped to save me. Also with the re-route we went right past The Picasso, which is my favoritest of the downtown sculptures. Total Win.




We hung out at the Bean and played there while we waited for Scott. Finally he found us (took awhile, that should have given me an idea of what we were soon in for…). We played a little longer, then began our trek to The Field. Uhhhh – it’s about 2 miles to the Field from where we were. I don’t know why that didn’t occur to me earlier. It was the longest, most miserable walk I have ever taken. Hot humid weather, without a cloud in the sky, + slow tired kids + little shade + I was wearing cheap sandals. Ouchie. I took a spin class on Tuesday night, and I thought the bottoms of my feet were going to straight-up slough off about 5 minutes into the class. They are not looking so pretty right now.



OMG I can’t believe no one died (or killed each other) on that walk. So usually I am a total miser and refuse to buy the over-priced crappy cafeteria food at museums, but dude we needed something to change the mood. So the first thing we did after getting tickets was to get some grub and drinks. Sitting in the cool AC while we refueled, chatting about what areas to hit up first, that was an immense help.


Pete was so excited, because he thought we were at the museum from Night At The Museum. Heh. We checked out the Main Hall, then set out to find the Tsavo Man Eaters. I talked these lions up and Pete was dying to see them in person. At my previous job I worked with Bruce Patterson, he is a scientist at the Field and studies the Tsavo lions, so I told Pete everything I learned from Bruce (if you don’t know much about them check this out, they are fascinating). And dudes, they even had this portion where all the lights dimmed out and a video played on the wall and there was Bruce, explaining his research. Like some sort of weird floating hologram.


I really love this museum. We wandered all over, the boys got some glow-in-the-dark dinosaurs from the Sue Store that they still carry everywhere (score, most toys fall out of favor quickly), and we took our time walking back to the car. It was a much shorter walk to the new parking garage, and it was overcast. Much. Better.





No trip to Chicago is complete until we stop at Scott’s favorite brewery, so we went off to Logan Square to Revolution for a late lunch. Pete and I split a pork-belly-with-over-easy-egg sandwich. Holy crap that thing was good.


We hit up IKEA on the drive home, because one can never have enough cheap Swedish junk. Also we had to get more stuffed veggies for Moose, because I am pretty sure they are discontinuing the Torva line soon. He now owns 3 carrots and 2 broccoli. You can never have enough stuffed veggies.

That’s it, kiddos. I still have lots of catching up for other things, so will post again soon. Enjoy your short week and GOD BLESS THE COOL FALL WEATHER.


Chicago, The Outtakes

We went to Chicago this past weekend.  I am pulling together a post and I have to say, this was a banner trip, and that is basically because I have a whole lotta outtakes.  Most trips we pull it together pretty well, but like anyone else we all have our… moments… while traveling.  This trip was extra-special, because (1) Pete is six and therefore has developed his own ideas for what is a personal hell, and (2) Linus has hit the Screaming Dictator of Toddlerdom stage.  So anyway, while going through my files I noticed a distinct pattern, and thought I would share.  A ‘normal’ post to come later.

Reasons my boys are angry, the Chicago Edition:

This is the 28th (approx.) colorful wall his mom forced him to stop in front of to take “just a few quick” pictures.


We wouldn’t get him a beer, no matter how many coasters he had.


He whined about wanting to go to the People Face fountain, so we went out of our way to back-track to take him, but then he was mad we didn’t pack his favorite swim trunks, so forget he even mentioned it, GAWD.


I took a picture of him relaxing with dad.


We made him walk to the museum instead of getting a cab.


(In his defense, it was a damned long walk and it was hot Hot HOTTTTTT, LAWDY SO HOT.  Still. He could have been a smidge less dramatic about it.)


We made it to the museum, but it turns out we had to take a different entrance.


Pete went to use the bathroom without him. He threw himself upon the floor, crying loudly, then stopped and toddled over to his crib.  Took out his stuffed carrot, dragged it to his perch outside the bathroom door, then proceeded to continue crying loudly while prone upon the (carrot on the) floor.


At one point they both cried because I took away their new toy dinosaurs at the Field Museum (because they immediately had loud, obnoxious dinosaur fights when I handed them over, because GAWD NEVER HAVE KIDS).  Unfortunately I was too tired at that point to take any photos.  Here is an approximation.

We ordered him his favorite food, French fries. (He threw them.)


Actually: Pete isn’t actually mad in this last photo, instead I had randomly asked him to give me his best Angry Face, because I was curious.  Or bored.  Anyway, he really owned it.

(He has had lots of practice, trust; we made him walk in the heat a LOT.)


That’s pretty much the best of the sourpuss faces, although believe me I could share all night if I didn’t have several other things to do instead.  Off to prep for tomorrow and take a shower; I’ll share more soon.