Kindergarten, Here She Comes!

Hello Friends,

Like so many of you out there, we are wrapping up our school year. For Cricket, that means she is done with pre-school, and on her way to kindergarten. Yep, she’s got her certificate and everything.

Logistically, this makes the Cricket an actual student. We now qualify for multi-student discount and financial aid and all sorts of other fun school stuff. And of course, she now gets to wear a uniform-no more “choice A or choice B” in the mornings!

Cricket got to sing a couple of songs, and she and her classmates performed an alphabet poem about their year. Their celebration ceremony was informal, but nice. And no worries about Sweetie. She is off to the Second Grade, right next door to her current classroom. She got sent along with a jovial pat on the shoulder.

We hope you all have a good wrap to your school year, and may your summer start well. We’ll see you out there!

Singin’ Out Loud

Hello Friends,

Our girls will often break out into song. Sometimes for a brief second, sometimes for a longer moment. And most often at the dinner table. Sometimes it is an actually song, many times it is just randomness. Either way, I seldom have a camera ready to capture the performance.

Well, here is one instance where I was ready, and the Cricket delivers. Her heart-felt delivery of this emotional ballad conveys her connection to her inner self. And by inner, I mean beneath the skin…actual inner, not metaphysical. Enjoy!

“I Love My Bones”

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I am going to try to put up more video content. Let’s see where this chapter takes us in 2019!

Bike to School Day

Hello Friends,

Wanted to share a bit of today’s adventure with you all. Before I go on too long, let me say I hope your day is going well, and your adventures are constructive.

We live wonderfully close to St. Viator Elementary, the girls’ school. That makes days like today, “Bike to School Day”, especially fun. In the fall we were all about taking our wagon to school. This changes things up a bit.

As you may have noticed, Sweetie is still on training wheels. She just got the two-wheeler last year, so we are in the learning curve (for the record, I think her class is evenly split on training wheels). And Cricket, well, yes, she’s on a tricycle. We did practice this run before hand, but oh what fun!

Once we made it to school we joined the other kids for a two-block “loop” along the east side of the school (closed to traffic for pick-up of course). The girls made a lap around here and with the exception of a loosened pedal, they both did well. Going home in the afternoon was a different story and we made the last block and a half with me carrying the tricycle and pushing the bicycle. Yeah, good sleep after that…and for the girls too!

I hope your day was as beautiful as ours. I am thinking this marks our transition to cycle transportation – #summergoals! We’ll see you out there.

Not Warm Yet

Hello Friends,

Here in Chicago we have reached that time of year where the sun is coming out more and the temperatures are rising during the day, but it is not warm yet. These bouncing temperatures mean children are over-dressed and under-dressed daily, so everyone gets sick. We are just coming off a 10 day course of antibiotics ourselves.

Despite the cold, the sun is causing some spring fever. The girls want to get out! Nothing like playing with pails and shovels in your scarf and mittens (Sweetie is fond of bundling up). Or a tricycle ride in mittens.

We are trying here, friends! We are on the mend, the temp is on the rise – you’ll be seein’ more from us. We hope you all are dealing with the spring well, maybe we’ll see you out there.

School Photos

Hello friends,

the past two years I have shared pictures of Sweetie on her school’s picture day. I thought that I would share a picture of the Cricket given that today was her first.

This picture is from late morning, after school. Big kudos to Ms. K for keeping the Cricket clean and her hair up (she is usually quick to pull out any bands or clips).

I would’ve gladly included pictures of Sweetie in her matching dress, but she changed as soon as we got home. I was distracted by Cricket playing in the yard and poof, out comes Sweetie in a different dress. That’s alright though, the Cricket needs to have a couple of posts to herself.

And our school year adventures continue…

Don’t Call it a Comeback…

Hello Friends,

Yeah, I’ve been away for a bit. And while I have a variety of reasons that I feel justify the silence, they end up as excuses. I mean, I’m going to try to write about all this stuff anyway.

So the quick recap: we have not yet moved back into the house (it’s still under construction); Sweetie celebrated another birthday; Sweetie just wrapped up PreK-4; summer break started this week; there are product reviews to share; there are recipes to share; there is a new category to share; there is a vlog ( as a blog supplement) in the works. Whew!

So why not a comeback? ‘Cause this doesn’t really count as a post. And one post doesn’t warrant some sort of pat on the back. This is a smoke signal to let you all know we’re still here on the detour. And to share this random video of the Cricket jumping rope as only an almost 3 year old can:

https://www.youtube.com/edit?o=U&video_id=hgdYHYqoK2Y

Thanks for sticking with us – we’ll see you again soon!

Enjoying a Long Weekend

What better way to prepare for a fresh weekend than to share our adventures from last week’s 4-day weekend! Thanks to the end of the trimester and staff retreat, we had four days to adventure last weekend. (Obviously, this week has been busy as we try to get back on track and get our inner clocks re-aligned.) So what is the best thing to do when faced with a long weekend and two children under 5? Get busy!

And it begins!

Wife was busy on Friday, so the girls and I headed to Lincoln Park to check out the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. Wife and I had attended a fundraising event here many years ago so it was great to get back over for some exploring. And as you can tell by the bundled children, it was a perfect day for indoor adventures!

The girls were off and running as soon as we got inside, so we had to find something cool to check out quick. They loved the interactive exhibits, the first being an exhibit all about water management explaining the different structures for moving and utilizing water. I think the girls understood it as, “Water! And boats! Fish too!” Needless to say, they weren’t really into the history-oriented exhibits.

Is it lunch time yet?

Without a doubt, the girls’ favorite spot was the play area in the basement. It is set up as a marshy environment, complete with a tree-like play fort, a cave and a beaver lodge.

Beaver? Cat? Go with what you know.

And did I mention the costume/serape things they had for the kids? One in frog design and the other in a beaver design, these were great for being dragged around the room, sat upon for faster sliding and general sharing of all germs that kids can carry. The girls loved ’em.

Beaver? Ewok? Eh, cute either way.

I liked this area for two main reasons. 1.) It has a fence and therefore keeps the children contained, and 2.) It has its own private bathroom. Which we all put to good use. So the adventures stretched from the morning to the early afternoon and the girls were plenty worn out afterwards. Another major attraction at the museum is the butterfly pavilion, but I was so busy keeping the girls calm that I didn’t try to snap any photos. Who knew butterflies were creepy?!?

Wife was free on Saturday, so we headed to Old Town to visit the Chicago History Museum. Wife couldn’t believe it was my first visit. There she is with Sweetie in the bottom right corner of the photo. Again, too cold to play outside.

So the girls’ interest was the same as at the nature museum: if it was interactive, it was awesome. And while neither one of them would be a hot dog, the condiments got plenty of love.

And the trains. They loved checking out the trains. There is an early locomotive as well as an early passenger train (precursor to our beloved CTA trains). The girls visited these a few times. Places to go, ya’ see.

All aboard!

We hit an educational movie and tried to read some of the information in the exhibits, but the girls kept moving. Sweetie picked up a couple of tidbits about the Great Chicago Fire, but I think it was an attempt to understand an event so big. One last perk about the history museum, it has the North & Clark Cafe’ attached to the south end. So lunch without leaving the warmth was a great way to end our visit.

The remainder of our weekend was spent on everyday stuff; cleaning, straightening up, visiting family, checking on the house, and even watching a Redbox movie, just Wife and I. We were all a bit worn out after our back-to-back adventures, but it was so worth it. Chicago is full of museums and other great treasures for entertaining/educating your little ones, yet one more reason to love our city. Here’s to this weekend’s adventures!