Tuesday, July 28, 2009

When it comes to finances...

...sometimes I fear having four kids might drain us. Literally.

I have been mentally adding up the upcoming fees for this year.

$240 in raffle tickets (that can be recouped if we sell them)
$85 registration fee
$10 family fee
$40 USA Hockey coaching fee for Thad
$250 to play on a traveling team
$240 volunteer fee (a check we have to write that supposedly won't be cashed since Thad coaches)
$80 registration
Baseball: I think it was/will be around $80
Hockey camp: was $400 this year, who knows what next year
Wednesday religion: $40
School activity fee: $15 plus school supplies

Dance: $28/month plus her uniform
Skating: $45ish a session (should she choose to do this)
Wednesday religion: $40. This year she has her First Communion too...

Dance: $25/month plus her uniform
Gymnastics: $70 session plus $18 registration fee
Hockey: likely a no go....
Preschool: eek

**each of these kids will be in swimming lessons. They are in it now for a total of $170/session.


I know other families have it worse. I get that we don't have to do all this. This time of year just gets expensive with the fall things coming due. Up until this year hockey hasn't been bad, so I shouldn't complain. It just freaks me out.
Add to this: the snacks the girls get at the hockey games, the hotels we will need to book when Ryan travels, the fast food meals we will pick up when we are on the go, and the time it takes to do all this.

Then again my dad has always said that all of this will be cheaper than the lawyer fees we would have to pay some day if the kids have the time to get into trouble.

Saturday, July 25, 2009


Our family spent three years living in Perham, MN. We lived their from 1981-84. I went to Kindergarten, first, and second grade there. I have many good memories from our time there. It was a small town, so we literally biked wherever we wanted, and our parents let us. We played hard outside, exploring the various locations in town, went to the library, Steve's candy store (I always find one of those), participated in the Turtle Races weekly, went fishing a lot with my dad, hung out at the roller rink (where I got to skate hand in hand with my 2nd grade boyfriend to Air Supply's Making Love Out of Nothing At All no less), and made many friends. Interestingly, when my dad's teaching job was recalled in 1984, we were thrilled to move back to Moorhead. That had always been the #1 spot to live in my mind.

The one person I kept in touch with was my best friend Jennifer. I worshipped her for a long time prior to us becoming friends. She had long hair that her mom put in pretty pony tails. I had the lovely Dorothy Hamill haircut that resembled a boy. She had a mom that I thought was gorgeous, plus she had three young siblings. I will admit, another reason I was a little obsessive was because she threw up in class in the first grade...but I won't get into the details.

We exchanged letters for a long time as well as school pictures, but eventually drifted. Well good old Facebook changed that! Finally after a few months of communicating, Jennifer and her mom helped to set up a reunion at Zorbaz at Little Pine lake today. I brought my kids, Erin brought her two youngest, and my mom came as well. We visited, reminsiced, laughed, and enjoyed one another's company.

Do you have people who were (in hindsight) a part of your life for only a couple years, but had a big impact? This family did. Jennifer and I spent a lot of time together. We both had matching pink jackets to be like the Pink Ladies, enjoyed Culture Club & Michael Jackson, swimming (even though I couldn't), playing at the park, and just doing what your average seven year old did.

Here are some pictures of our day....this was the apartment we lived in for two years. It was awesome sharing a room with Erin AND sharing a bathroom with our entire family. We have become spoiled.
This was our house...

Friday, July 24, 2009


...kids do and say things that just tickle your heart. For example:

Ryan decided on his own today to clean out the garage to surprise is daddy. He swept, organized, and made it look nice. It was a just because thing that he opted to do late in the afternoon.

Olivia walked up to me tonight and said, "I love you Mom." I said, "I love you too Olivia." She replied, "I love you more than me!"
Tonight Olivia noticed a big 'owie' on Thad's leg from filling in at softball Tuesday night. She said, "What happened daddy?" Thad told her he got hurt at softball. "I will get some ice for it." The kid doesn't miss a beat.

Kate and Ryan were watching TV this afternoon in my bed. I crawled in and got an excellent cuddle in with my girl.

Brady makes me smile all the time. His top two teeth have popped through, he shakes his head no, he does so big, and he is my little snuggle bug.

We all have these daily moments. I do not stop and savor them enough. Each day really is a blessing, and this girl is one happy camper.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Wynn

Vegas was wonderful. The Wynn was beyond wonderful. It is a very high end place, and although we didn't look the part, I think we each felt a teeny bit extra special. Their music, ambiance, decor, details, room, etc, was so nice. It's a very romantic resort, but it's also quite relaxing.
We saw Jersey Boys at the Palazzo. I can't recommend this show enough. To date, it's the best show I have ever seen in Las Vegas. It was spectacular.
The highlight of the trip was seeing Nick Newman from Young and the Restless. (his real name is Joshua Morrow) As college girls, Kim, Melissa, and others I can't recall watched this show between classes. If one of us missed it, we filled one another in on what happened. Nick was newly on the show then. He is still on to this day, and let me tell you he is a HOTTIE. My mom spotted him, called Erin, and then they began calling me. After nine calls to my phone, I finally saw that Erin wanted to get a hold of me. She was trying to explain to me where to go to find him. She could leave her spot, because she was waiting for her drink.
I found him, disconnected, and proceeded to sneak a photo of him with my cell phone (that I forgot to save). His friend saw me, so I said, "I am sorry, but that is Nick Newman." He grabbed him, and he said, "What's your name." Inside I was cursing my damn dad for naming me Bonnie. How uncool is that name? But I digress....he gave me a HUG, and I took a picture with him. Ahhhhh
The only glitch in the trip was that my breast pump had a faulty piece. After two days of engorgement, I had to express milk by hand. I did look quite filled out though, and that was kind of fun for a change. See? Look for the positive in every situation, and you are sure to find it!
It was the perfect getaway. I needed a little break from home. I got to laugh a lot with my sister and mom, drink some darn good (& spendy) drinks, lay in the sun, shop without kids, eat without kids, and know that my husband was taking good care of our children.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

What a week

It's been such a busy week around here for me. On Tuesday, AJ and her adorable girls came to town. She, Melissa T, Kris, Erin, and I got together with (most) our kids. It was mad chaos in my house, but that's when things tend to be at their best. It was wonderful to catch up, laugh, and enjoy one the company. I haven't uploaded pictures yet, but I will.

Today, I got to see my dear friends Elli, Robin, and Kristi. All of these people (other than my sister) have been friends since either Thomas Edison, Robert Asp, or the Jr. High. It's funny how the older I get, I just appreciate getting to be with these people. We have such a rich history with one another. I look at my Ryan and think, "That's how old I was when I met some of these people." Wow.

Tomorrow I am going to Las Vegas with my mom and sister. I am mostly excited, but also guilt ridden and apprehensive to leave my family. I have never left for three whole nights without any of my kids. I have never put Thad in charge like this. He will do just fine. The big kids will do just fine. I hope Brady does fine too. I am certainly going to miss them all.

Do you know what I am most looking forward to? I look forward to eating when I want, not having to make sure everyone has their food, that it's cut, and hearing the words, "But I don't like this mom." I look forward to reading, listening to music at the pool, people watching, and seeing a good show. I look forward to spending time with my family like we never have before.

I am already weighted by the stress of leaving again in two weeks with Thad. He and I deserve a getaway with just us (and friends), but leaving my children is no easy task. We are still sorting through who will watch the kids, when, and what that will cost us. Still, for a couple who rarely goes out on a date all year, I feel we are ready for some "us" time.

So it's been a good week, and here's to a great weekend. Did I mention the highs in Vegas are in the 110s this weekend? Coming off of a very chilly week, it's just what this girl is looking for!

Monday, July 13, 2009

all i have to say....

...is that I just put a bunch of new pics on facebook. If you aren't signed up with it, consider it. Us old farts are taking it over anyway.
We are having a blogger reunion of sorts tomorrow. More on that later with pictures.

One parting thought/question: Why did I cave and buy Lucky Charms for my kids? They were on sale, but really, LC is like crack to me. I just inhaled two bowls. I am forcing myself not to have a third.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

I love the Fourth

Here are some photos from our weekend. We left for the cities around lunchtime on Friday. We stayed at Stacy (Thad's sister) and Jeff's new home in Prior Lake. The kids played, sang, danced, and did all that fun stuff that cousins/friends do.
The boys went to watch a great Twins game on Saturday while the girls went to Chutes and Ladders. I stayed back with an overtired four and nine month old. After they rested (but not long enough), Stacy, Grandma Jo, and I drove the girls/little kids to Off Saks in downtown Minneapolis.
We grilled and watched the fireworks display over Mystic Lake casino. We had a perfect view. Today we got up, ready, and visited my lifelong friend AJ and her hubby Bill who I actually knew in college. Her three girls are darling, and our kids threw their swimsuits on for a dip in their pool. I think they could have swam all day long, and we could have visited with Bill and AJ too! You will see in the pictures that Laila was trying to take a bite out of chubby Brady. It was hilarious! Delaney and Thad snuggled for a bit too, which was funny considering she had never met him....
We stopped at the outlet mall, and then the kids napped much of the way home. All in all it was a fabulous weekend, and I feel blessed to have such great friends and family...

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

It's my turn

Since I politely requested that some of my friends update their blog, I thought I would do the same. Unfortunately not much is going on in this neck of the woods. Well, I guess I can think of a few things.
1. Brady is NINE months old today. He scoots on his bottom, goes in circles on his hands/knees, is attached to his mommy like velcro, can be VERY loud, still has some night time sleeping issues, and smiles almost all the time.
He is one heavy dude. Any of you moms know if I have to keep my 20+ lb baby in a rear facing car seat until he is one? I think I will call the pediatrician tomorrow.
2. Kate is still in baseball. She likes to hit the ball. Tonight she had a on a cute skirt and her baseball shirt gathered to one side in a knot. We made her put shorts on as I reminded her that this isn't a fashion show.
3. Olivia is still gung-ho on playing hockey this fall. Ugh. She told her cousins last weekend that, "I am playing hockey, going to have a boyfriend, and kiss Tyler on the lips." She's got it all figured out.
4. Ryan's last day of hockey camp is tomorrow. He hasn't complained about it other than today for a second. He stated that he isn't doing camp next year. Oh, tonight I came home to a set dinner table, pancakes, sausage, and even napkins in place made by....RYAN! What a guy.
5. We are headed to Prior Lake for the weekend. Thad's sister Stacy has finally moved there. Thad, Ryan, Jeff, and Shane are going to the Saturday afternoon Twins game. I have no clue what the girls will do. I am excited to see their new house! AJ, how far is it to your place from PL? Are you around this weekend?

That's about it. I will leave you with this....