Thursday, July 31, 2008

It's a Mystery

When Jackson opened the door the other morning to go out to play, this is what we found on the mat:

On the day before the last day of school, Jackson forgot his lunch box at school. I figured it was just gone and I'd be buying him a new one for this year. Nearly two months later, it shows up on our door step. No knock on the door; no note saying who dropped it off. Just the ice pack and the note that I had written him on that day were inside.

While I'm very grateful to whoever returned his lunch box, I am going BONKERS trying to think who it might have been. His teacher? A neighbor who might have picked it up on that day, thrown it in the back of their car and forgotten about it until now? A friend? Or maybe it was a sign from God to Jackson just to remind him that school is coming...soon. :-)

Monday, July 28, 2008

Lazy Days...

I've been urged to update and I suppose it has been a while since I've posted, but there's really been nothing much to report. Since we got back from the beach, we've kind of been on coast mode.

Jackson has had some excitement, though. Last week he and Jim went on a camping/river rafting trip with some other dads and sons (and a couple of moms too) from their cub scout den. They camped right on the bank of the river and spent two days floating down the river then coming back up and floating down the river again.

They came home exhausted, stinky and crabby. But I think they had a good time.

Seriously, other than that, we got nothin'.

I hope you're enjoying the dog days of summer.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Wii controllers found!

I got an e-mail from the owner of the condo saying that they actually found our Wii remotes in the couch cushions right where we left them. My faith in the honesty of humanity has been restored.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Date Night #?

I've lost track of how many dates we've been on in our year of 25 dates. I'm sure if Jim were here right now I could ask him and he would pull out his spread sheet and let me know, but unfortunately he's not here so we'll just have to leave it blank.

Last night we went out to dinner at one of my favorite places, and Jim tolerates it too,...Chili's! I love those little Slider hamburgers and have always loved their fajita nachos so that's exactly what we had. Along with a presidente margarita which I've also always loved.

After dinner we went to a comedy club which is something we haven't done in a while. We've been watching Last Comic Standing lately and it inspired us. Before we went in to the show we were trying to take a picture of ourselves in the parking lot and get the club name in the background. Not an easy task. Someone walking by asked if they could take a picture for us, but we felt like the biggest dorks alive so we just said, "no thanks," and gave up and went inside.

We tried again after the show and finally ended up with this as the best shot of the night.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Lost Wii Controllers

When we went to the beach I had the brilliant idea to take the Wii for the kids, and the moms too, to play during their down time. It was a great idea I thought. We got back from the beach on Wednesday and today, Saturday, I just got around to unpacking the Wii and hooking it back up to our tv at home. All the parts to the Wii were in the box, except the two controllers. Somehow they got left behind. And this is going to drive me crazy for the rest of my days.

We have always traveled alot because we've always lived away from our family so I'm a pretty good packer, traveler person. And I pride myself on never (or very rarely) leaving anything behind. Ask Jim's mom...she'll tell you that with all the crap we bring to her house, we hardly ever forget anything when we leave. Jim will say it's because of his obsessive checking of the drawers, under the beds, etc., ten times before we leave. But in reality, it's due to my uncanny, superb packing skills. Nevertheless, we are somehow without two Wii controllers...on my packing duty...there's no way I can blame Jim for this one. At least, I haven't figured out yet how it's his fault.

I did e-mail the owner of the condo and she said she'd check, but there have been renters there since we checked out so I'm sure if the cleaning people didn't take them, those people scooped them up. Maybe humanity will surprise me and they'll still be sitting right where we left them. We'll see. In the meantime, I'll be obsessing over how I could have possibly overlooked them.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Back from the Beach

I was a tad bit apprehensive about taking a mom/kid vacation to the beach with 6 kids and only 3 parents (Brandy with Dylan, Heather with Cameron and Megan and Me with the 3 Js) but it actually turned out better than I expected. We stayed 3 nights/4 days and I left wishing we had one more day to spend there. We rented a condo on the far west end of Galveston island. It was a little remote, but very peaceful, uncrowded and a fairly nice beach by Galveston standards. It's not Gulf Shores but it's also not a 10 hour drive away.

The kids and moms thoroughly enjoyed themselves...ate too much (the moms not the kids), played an unending game of Phase 10, had lots of yummy frozen drinks (again, the moms not the kids), played the Wii, read, slept, sunned, dug holes in the sand, found seashells, tried to fly kites, snorkled in the muddy water, argued, made up, did I say ate too much?, snuggled under blankets, got close to nature (jelly fish, crabs and snails), watched the sunset, swam, watched movies, cemented their bond, oh, and did I say ate too much? :-) I'd do it all again in a heartbeat.

Monday, July 07, 2008

We're Back!

First, we had a great 4th of July day. We had just gotten back from Michigan the night before. We got up and went to the parade in the morning, then barbecued with neighbors in the afternoon, then set off tons of fireworks in the evening. At 4th of July parades, I'm always struck by the crowd and how so many people are wearing coordinating outfits. You don't see this for any other holiday and it cracks me up. I'm usually one of the few not wearing red, white or blue. On this holiday I'm always looking for something to wear but I just don't buy those colors for myself. Now, if brown suddenly became the color of choice for the 4th I'd be all set!

Our trip to Michigan and Indiana was great! We had awesome weather which gave us a break from our heat down here. Temps were in the 70s and 80s and while the kids were "freezing" most of the time, Jim and I were in heaven!

After spending the first couple of days with my dad, we headed up to stay with Jim's mom for a few days. The kids had a great time doing the usual stuff we do in Durand...go to the farm, climb trees, fish, play in the basement (continues to be a thrill for them), see some movies--Wall-E (thumbs down), Kung Fu Panda (thumbs up) and Kit Kittredge (big thumbs up) and generally just relax.

We then went down to Granger, Indiana to see the Tom Fujas and attend our nephew Ben's open house celebrating his graduation from high school. Ben has turned into a great person and he has a really bright future ahead of him. We're proud to be his God parents as well as aunt and uncle.

The party was great with all the Fujas except two in attendance. Our niece, Christine, introduced her fiance, Ben, to the whole family at the party...poor guy. They're planning a wedding in Chicago for the fall of 2009.

We spent the night in Granger to spend more time with Tom, Cindi, Kaity and Ben. The next day we headed to Notre Dame for a tour. It really is a beautiful campus...very peaceful. As of this moment (when she's 11) Jordan is saying that's where she'd like to go to college. It would certainly be a different college experience for her than the one I had. Notre Dame only has about 8,000 undergrads versus the 25,000 or so that were at Michigan when I was there. It seemed strange walking around the campus with her now and thinking that she could be back here as a student seven years from now. Suddenly, seven years didn't seem like very much time.

After the tour, we headed to New Buffalo, Michigan which is a cute beach town on Lake Michigan. We had a great lunch at a hamburger institution called Redamak's then went to the beach to walk around. The kids were bummed that we hadn't brought bathing suits, but after putting their toes in the freezing water, they were fine with keeping their clothes on! We weren't there very long before a storm rolled in across the lake and we had to head back to the car but not before we got a few great pictures (most of the good ones, taken by Kaity...she's a great photographer!).

After wearing out our welcome in Indiana :-) we headed back up to Michigan for a few last days with Jim's mom. We had a great trip and as always, it was sad when it was time to say good-bye.

Now, we're back in Texas and having a low-key week before the kids and I head to the beach for a few days of mom/kid vacation.