Friday, February 27, 2015

{Life}

Kids...


Work...


The Weather... (yes, it deserves to be capitalized like it's a real thing because it sucks!)


Family...


The House...


Yearbook.... (I'm a co-sponsor)


....


Excuses why this blog is lacking. I have plans this summer so maybe when my garden isn't covered in snow and I have time to paint, decorate and who knows what, this place will be hoppin' again!

Monday, February 23, 2015

{Family Vacation} Part 3 - Branson

Welcome! This is the final post of our trip to Springfield and Branson. Part 1 covered the Pythian Castle and Springfield, Part 2 covered the Fantastic Caverns and Lambert's Restaurant, and now to Part 3 - Branson!

Now, speaking of Branson, we aren't a family that goes during their prime visiting time to watch the shows, go to Silver Dollar City, and the like. We did, as a family of four back in the day, go to SDC but I was so small and young that I almost fell out of the water ride when the water came on me. That's small! And also the only other time I've been to Branson, other than driving through it once or twice to go to Arkansas. 

My mom found a hotel that included an indoor water park, called Castle Rock. Lily is a HUGE fan of water… ocean, lakes, pools… so we knew that even though we weren't at the beach, she'd be happy. And boy, was she! 



Even Nate enjoyed it!!! 


Our first full day at Branson also saw a visit to The Butterfly Palace. It is worth the time to go! It'll only take a couple of hours to see the whole thing, if that, and that's if you spend time taking photos of the butterflies. They release newly hatched butterflies twice a day (I think) and it's fun. Lily absolutely freaked out (in a bad way) when they tried to land on her, so she wasn't a fan. However, she did enjoy the lizards, frogs, and other attractions. 



 We ate some delicious food, some mediocre food, and enjoyed our little getaway. Next year we're thinking of Florida again, so let us know if you have any good beaches! Nate will be 2, so he'll be a little bit easier (although I say that lightly as I doubt Nate and easy will ever go together), but it'll be a fun time to take him to the beach. And Lily will be over the moon to go to the beach again! 

Saturday, February 21, 2015

{Family Vacation} Part 2 - Fantastic Caverns

Our second day of vacation started with the Holiday Inn's breakfast, which always provides a nice variety especially for kids! After that we decided to go to Fantastic Caverns, a great little area not too far from Springfield. 





Below are the 13 names of the First Explorers, all women. Pretty cool! 

After awhile in the cave, my camera fogged up… on the inside… so pictures became all blurry, similar to the one above but even more so. Luckily I got a few decent ones! 

When we left, we stopped by Lambert's Restaurant, home of the "throwed rolls"… even Lily caught one!! 

Next… Part 3, Branson! If you didn't check out the creepy photos from Part 1 - Pythian Castle and Springfield, you'll want to check those out too. 

Monday, January 12, 2015

{Family Vacation} Part 1 - Springfield

After Christmas, my family (my parents, Doug, and the kids) took a trip. This year, due to Nate being more challenging (and young), we stayed close to home. Although in years passed, we've gone to Florida and Alabama. We do plan on going to Florida (possibly) again next year so if you have any recommendations and good beaches, I'd love to hear it!


So this year we stayed close to home. We went to Springfield for one night and my dad watched both kids while my mom, Doug and I went on a tour of a supposedly haunted castle, known as the Pythian Castle. Now, we thought we were actually going on a haunted tour. We got more of a haunted history tour in a group that was way too large. The place was beautiful and we'd love to go back to do a real haunted tour as a lot of things seem to happen there. It was interesting to say the least!


Below are two rooms in the basement. The first was once a gym type area. The second is the tunnel that lead to the boiler room and laundry that were housed in a separate building. The tunnel is supposedly haunted of a man who roams the area. Although we didn't see anything, I definitely felt like I was being watched in the tunnel! It is closed off now but you get an odd feeling down there. 









Below is what used to be a bowling alley. Nice orb, right?! 

If you read the blocks from the other side, they say "ICUDIE" .. I read it as "I see you DIE" … scary, huh? And let's just take a moment to look at the creepy doll. These were both in a room that used to house various kids of different ages. "Petey" is supposedly still there. This is also the room that my mom was poked in and no one did it.





Talk about creepy!! 

Be sure to check back for Part 2 - The Fantastic Caverns and Part 3 - Branson.

Friday, January 2, 2015

{House} 2015's Plans

The past two years (well, more, but those are documented), I wrote down plans I'd like to accomplish. So… instead of adding more to the list, I'm going to continue with what I have yet to finish. Maybe this will be the year!

I will say one thing… 2014 saw the idea of moving and/or building a new home for us. That put a big change of plans in our heads so we're rethinking a few things we had originally planned for our house. But I'd still like to do a few things…

2014's list:
1. Redo steps to our upstairs
2. Remove holly (the only surviving bush in our front yard)
3. Remove grass in Lily's Garden and replace with rocks/pea gravel
4. Paint shed
5. Work on the Backyard Playground (reuse stepping stones, add rock box, fence it in, anything else?!)
6. Add more fruits and veggies to our garden
7. Add shelves to my office
8. Possibly do the bathroom and/or work on the kitchen instead
9. Paint stairwell to basement

And well, only a few got finished… #2 and #3.

So, 2015's list:
1. Redo steps to our upstairs. 
2. Paint shed.
3. Work on background (simplified to include many things, not just the playground)
4. Add more fruits and veggies to our garden - this will be yearly, although some did get accomplished as we planted blueberry bushes
5. Add shelves to my office.
6. Bathroom and/or kitchen
7. Paint stairwell to basement

OK… so I'm adding more things..

1. Paint all exterior trim white (window sills, etc.)
2. Paint front porch floor, possibly ceiling
3. Paint back porch floor - hopefully the same color as front porch, possibly even the shed's walls to tie all three spaces together and to minimize amount of paint purchased
4. Paint trim around door (this may go with #1 unless I choose a different color). 

Other people use buzz words for their year, but mine should just be one word that'll cover the majority of my tasks… PAINT! 

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014

Happy New Year!!

While this year didn't see a lot of major changes, I can honestly say my favorite (and well, the only one really) was finally seeing the final stage of Lily's Garden. I'll admit that it'll never be "done" as a garden is always changing and growing, but the big stuff is done. The final beds were added, the grass was all killed, landscaping fabric was laid, and rocks were put down. It is a huge improvement over the boring grass that was there just a few years ago. And I love it! I look forward to the Spring when I can see my plants again and work on dividing some up and moving things to our back yard to add some character there.





Another fun thing happened in our front yard (right in front of Lily's Garden) and that was the creation of the Blueberry Bed. We (and by "we" I mean Doug) created the oval with heavy rocks, we filled it in, and added our two bushes. One doubled in size, the other not so much. But we picked a few berries off of it and Lily loves it. It won't compare to my parents' farm (they have probably 15 blueberry bushes, if not more), but it's nice. 

Other highlights of the year included Lily starting kindergarten (she loves it!) and Mr. Nate turning one. It's been a very busy year and I look forward to what 2015 has in store. 

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