Sunday, April 18, 2010


Maisie's Montessori school teaches writing before reading, which I never understood before yesterday, when Maisie said she wanted to write the word "hungry" in magnets on our refrigerator.

We sounded out the word - "hungry starts with 'huh.' What letter says 'huh'? Right, H says 'huh'!" We went through each sound in the word, though I had to help her with the vowels...

And at the end, here's what we got:


Maisie wrote that. I couldn't be more proud.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Yard sale score!

I've been looking for some backyard toys for the girls for a while now. I wanted something they could climb and play on... something that they wouldn't outgrow too quickly, but that would still be fun now. I initially figured I'd buy new, but the kind of thing I was looking for ran upwards of $200! Ridiculous!

But then today, driving back to work after lunch, I ran across a yard sale that had a two-level climber with a slide for only $30! I couldn't believe it - what a deal!

Dylan and Gramma came over to help us test it out...

Verdict: it's a hit! Fun for all ages - even 6 year olds. It's versatile - people can slide down the slide on their tummies, backs, or bottoms. And it even lends itself to being a castle or a pirate ship.

All in all, I think it's $30 well spent!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Sunny Sculpture Garden

Last Sunday was really beautiful... hard to believe it's only April, when the temperature gets up towards 70! So we decided that a picnic lunch at the Sculpture Garden would be a great thing to do.

We found a lovely place to picnic not too far from Spoon Bridge & Cherry. I wanted to get a great picture of the girls with that iconic image in the background. Too bad for me, the girls didn't want to cooperate...

Instead, I got a lot of pictures like this:

And this:

So, not really a success... now I understand why professional photographers earn the fees they do!

Maisie and I set off to explore other sculptures in the Garden,

while Aaron and Ella finished up the picnic in a sculpture's shade.

So although I didn't get the photographs I wanted, we still had a great time. We'll definitely be back, and maybe the girls will cooperate with my "SMILE! SAY CHEESE! LOOK AT THE CAMERA!" commands next time... I can hope!

Sunday, April 04, 2010

happy Easter!

Happy Easter to all who celebrate! Our Easter Sunday started early.

Ella of course woke up early, so she and I got up and checked out what the Easter bunny brought her. Her basket had, among other things, a rattle that she's really enjoying!

Maisie joined us shortly.

Her basket had a chocolate bunny in it! And just FYI, it turns out that if you let your preschooler eat a chocolate bunny for breakfast, probably your late morning/early afternoon will not be awesome. Lesson learned!

So this morning, the weather here was beautiful - mid 60s and sunny - so we headed down to the Minnesota Zoo in the morning, to check out the Farm Babies!

(For those who aren't familiar, the MN Zoo has a family farm exhibit, with cattle, sheep, goats, swine, and poultry. Every spring, the farm babies are CRAZY popular.)

This farm baby is two days old. TWO! He was born on Friday. Terribly cute.

This farm baby is a little bit older than that, but still also really cute!

On the way back from the farm, Ella got tired of the stroller...

She needed a new perspective.

Funnily enough, some of the real animal superstars of this trip to the zoo were not even zoo animals. There's a little lake chain between the main part of the zoo and the family farm, and at this time of year, there are a ton of Canada geese there.

Everyone loved the geese! LOOK AT THAT BIG BIRD, MAMA! They were a huge hit.