Pumpkin Festival 2013

We spent this past weekend in my hometown for the annual Pumpkin Festival.  The girls went to my parents on Wednesday afternoon, and then Kevin and I headed up on Friday afternoon.  My brother, Max, and I ran the 10k on Saturday morning, while my sister and her son ran the 2 mile.  Then we all headed to the parade.  After lunch at my parents’ house, we headed down to the festival for some rides.  As always, the girls had a great time.  Norah said that she wishes the Pumpkin Festival happened more than once a year.


My mom and 4 of the grandkids – waiting for Alison, Ryan, Max and me to run by (the 10k goes by their street, the 2 mile goes right by their house).


And there we go!


Max and I – pre-race


Post Race


Alison and Ryan running by Mom and Dad’s house.


Daphne and Kevin watching the parade together


Watching the parade (the VERY long parade) with cousins

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My brother, Rick, and my dad

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This is what happens to a 4 year old after too much Pumpkin Festival fun!  Ha!  Daphne was one tired girl!


As we headed out of town on Sunday, we ran by my cousin, Katie’s, coffee shop, Eli’s.  I grabbed some treats for the girls and my favorite, hazelnut and toasted marshmallow non-fat frap.  YUM!

As usual, we had a great weekend!  The girls are already talking about next year!!!



Weekend Away

We spent the weekend in Nashville visiting the Morrison’s. Just before we headed out on Friday to make the trek south, Daphne fell and split her chin open. Thankfully, she just needed a quick trip to our doctor for some dermabond and she was good to go.

The girls did great travelling on Friday – they read, watched movies, drew pictures, listened to music, etc, so I slept and Kevin drove. Daphne actually napped – probably as a result of a slightly traumatic morning.
Kevin and Ryan headed to a basketball game on Friday night so once the kids went to bed, Heather and I were able to spend time catching up (plus, she showed me some of her homemade Christmas presents – amazing!!).
On Saturday we went to the Nashville Zoo – it was a beautiful day! Daphne was exhausted because she didn’t sleep very well – so she was slightly on the feisty side.

Sunday morning the kids played and played (and several cried from exhaustion – lol) and then we headed home. The ride home was not quite as relaxing since we had some sleepy kiddos but we made it in one piece!!
It was fun to hang out with Morrison’s again and look forward to doing it again!

Camping Trip – sort of

We planned a camping trip with Kevin’s parents this fall. We didn’t want to go too far from home because the last time we took Daphne camping, she woke up in the middle of the night and screamed hysterically and would not go back to sleep so I eventually took her home. Kevin’s parents stay at KOA campsites all the time so that is what we went with this year. Our lives have been so crazy this fall that we didn’t do a lot of research before we decided on a place to stay so we made reservations at the Granite City KOA. Once we got there – we realized that it wasn’t quite what we were expecting. It was in the middle of an industrial park – so no hiking and not many trees in general and no fire pit. That was probably the more disappointing aspect because the girls were looking forward to roasting marshmallows and it just isn’t the same over a charcoal grill.

The cabin was clean and nice but in the end we decided to just stay one night and head home for Saturday night. We spent a little time at Eckert’s on our way home and then the girls just played and played with Grandma and Grandpa! The weather was beautiful so we still spent a lot of time outside – it was just at home in our own backyard!!
Here are a few of the pics from the weekend:

Yep, we are letting our kids watch a movie on the I-pad while we are camping. We figured if we can watch the Cardinal game (game 5 of the NLDS against the Phillies – so worth it!) while camping that they could watch a kid show on Saturday morning.

The girls all wanted to ride the ponies at Eckerts. They have a fascination with horses right now so this was their highlight!!


Silver Dollar City

We had so much fun last year at Silver Dollar City for the homeschool weekend that we decided to go again. Only this year, I didn’t fill Norah’s whole day with classes (last year we were racing to get to each class that we didn’t get to do much of the normal theme park stuff until Sunday).
My parents were already in Branson – visiting with a cousin of my mom’s. They joined us on Saturday at Silver Dollar City.
Here are some highlights:
(pay close attention to Lucy’s face in the first 2 pics)

This ride looks like it is going to be fun!!

Maybe not as much fun as I thought!! This was typical for almost every ride!! She is not very daring – not that I mind it most of the time. She was very picky about what rides she thought were acceptable! If it went a little too high or just a little too fast – she didn’t want to have anything to do with it!!

Daphne thought she was big stuff this year since she could actually ride several rides!! She loved it and she has NO FEAR!

I had to post this picture for 2 reasons: 1 – my mom’s face is hilarious! 2 – it looks like she and I are the only ones on the teacup ride!

hanging out with Grandpa Steve

The little school house is probably Norah’s favorite place to go at Silver Dollar City. We basically had to drag her out of there!!
We had a great weekend! We love Silver Dollar City – it is such a family-friendly, clean amusement park!!


The girls are totally into hiking right now. Seriously – they love it. They have great imaginations too. When we hike in a wooded area, they make up stories about hiking through an enchanted forest to a castle. Cracks me up.

It had been a very rainy weekend. Thankfully, no one actually fell into the mud!!!

We borrowed the backpack from some friends – Daphne loves her view from up high!!


We all headed up to Morton for the annual Pumpkin Festival. It ended up being. . .an interesting weekend this year. The weather was beautiful all week and then the forecast for Saturday afternoon was rain. We weren’t sure we would make it downtown to ride rides and eat the yummy food.

Kevin and I headed out extra early on Saturday to run in the 10k. I have the best husband ever – he stayed with me the whole time. Even though he can run way faster than me – he knew I would need the encouragement towards the end. My friend, Susan, ran with us for quite awhile too – which was totally fun to catch up a little. (I just need to add that after the run, we walked a mile back to my parents and then had to walk a mile to the parade, and under normal circumstances we would walk a mile back – all after running 6 miles).
We headed to the parade. The girls were pumped! The sky was looking a little overcast at this point but the rain was supposed to hold off until afternoon sometime. We sit about at the halfway point of the 2 mile parade at my great aunt and uncles house. My brother lives right behind where we sit. Before the parade actually started, it stared sprinkling. It would stop and then start again. Then as the parade started – it started raining harder and harder. The parade starts with the American flag, the parade Grand Marshall, the high school band, high school and junior high cheerleaders, junior high band, and then all the floats, politicians, local businesses etc. Before the junior high band actually made it to us, it was blowing and pouring. I mean POURING. Daphne and I ran for cover at Max’s house with Max and Contessa. Then a few minutes later Kevin and the girls (and my sister, her boys, Denise, Alex and Rick) come running and they are soaking wet from head to toe. The parade was cancelled – I guess they started turning everyone in the parade around at the closest street.
We had lunch at my grandma’s and then once the rain stopped, we headed downtown for some festival fun. The kids rode rides and ate some great food – pumpkin ice cream and elephant ears!!



Kevin and I spent a weekend in Chicago back in September. The girls hung out with Kevin’s parents for a few days while we were gone. We went to Ikea, slept in everyday, ran along Lake MI, went to a Cubs game, shopped on Michigan Ave, and ate some yummy food!! I never like leaving the girls, but we enjoyed our time away.

Those are some serious nachos.
It is hard to tell what he is doing – but while standing in front of the American Girl Place, Kevin is looking in his wallet. Wow. That store is something. . . and having 3 girls, I have a feeling we will be making a visit or two.