Thursday, July 21, 2011


I plan on finishing up finalizing the big birthday post this afternoon and instead of leaving you hanging a day, I figured I'd share a couple pictures. I fell in love with the idea of making sure to take a picture with the kids on their birthdays each year. After all the commotion & guests had left, I was able to pull Daycen aside.

He normally hates to get in front of the camera. However, I was able to bribe him that if he took a picture with me - I'd open that deluxe pack of Disney Car's.

After I spent some time clicking away with Daycen, I continued onto Ripsi. Who is always into getting her pictures taken!

Daycen has been playing side by side with his sister for very short periods of time lately. I actually was able to capture that moment to share with you guys...

The large track, thanks to my brother. Always leave it to uncles to give over the top birthday gifts.

Oh, and a sneak peek of Daycen's birthday theme...

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

POOL TIME ISN'T JUST FOR SWIMMING { It's about learning }

Aunt Leane came to town this past weekend again - I know, this blog makes it look like she comes every other weekend, but it's nearly months between visits. We were just blessed these were only three weeks apart! Steve & her allowed us to join them at the hotel pool for a little swim session before Daycen's birthday party. (thank goodness, too! It was nearly 90 degrees by mid afternoon!) I don't think it could have been a better pregame activity for the newly three year old!

He practiced his swim moves, & actually figured out the method of kicking the water!

He learned there is a lot more fun things to do in the water than just lounging in it.

He learned to jump in!

What he has yet to learn is his sister is madly in love with him.

I know someday he'll notice her admiring him.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

THE ANIMAL HAVEN ZOO. { a strange mix }

This past weekend we took our annual trip to the zoo for Daycen's birthday. The past two years we have gone to The New Zoo in Green Bay & have loved every second of it. This year, per my husband's request, we chose a different zoo to venture to. There was a tiny zoo 8 miles east of Waupaca, one that nobody else has seemed to have heard of. However, the webpage said they had zebras! Yes, zebras! The one animal we have yet to see in person. Only because of this, the zoo was our winner.

The second we pulled into the parking lot, I felt my heart drop. There was a small building that was gated in, & through the gate you could view.... goats. Yes, regular old farm goats. I held my breathe, wanting to scream, "NO WAY!" I wanted to hit reverse so fast, bite the bullet & drive the extra miles to the New Zoo. I, however, decided to adapt to change. To not judge things by it's cover & show the children a positive experience.

I paid our $16 admission fee & headed outside towards the animal exhibits. A wave of relief washed over me when I saw the big cats in the distance. We were going to see zoo animals! Not, farm animals!

It wasn't as clean as a normal zoo. It sort of felt cruel looking through the cages at the animals instead of through the normal plexi glass. Yet, we had a fantastic experience. Daycen loved the goats & the tiger. As for Ripsi, she had no preference & loved them all. I got to see the zebra & my husband got a different zoo. We were all happy.

But next year, we plan to return to the Green Bay Zoo. Let's be honest, we are too high maintenance for a petting zoo mixed with wild cats. We need our giraffes & our penguins. =)

Thursday, July 14, 2011


It amazes me how much a child at the age of Three retains information. I had causally told Daycen that on his birthday he could possibly go to Sweet Lola's for his birthday & get a special cupcake. The second he awoke yesterday morning with his eyes wide, he exclaimed, "CUPCAKE?!"

Oh goodness. Yes. We will be getting one of those tasty treats.

However, before we left I insisted he do all the early morning birthday rituals. The Birthday dance, the card opening, all that jazz.

He rushed through it all. Yet, how could you blame him? These beauties were waiting not too far away...

Overly large, delicious cupcakes!

He was the happiest little guy ever. Despite a could mishaps, our experience at the bakeshop was absolutely fantastic. I'd love to take him more often, since $2.75 isn't a bad price for a single cupcake. However, the headache of two babies in a public place by myself was a little bit more to handle than desired.

I'd love to go once a month though, anyone want to come & handle one of my children?!

Either way, he enjoyed his birthday cupcake yesterday & the leftovers of it this morning for breakfast. (that's right! Sweet Lola's two mornings in a row! What a treat!) Be sure to stop into Sweet Lola's on your birthday & try one of their delicious signature cupcakes for free! I promise, you won't regret it!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DAYCEN! { he is three today. }

Today was Daycen's 3rd Birthday. Hooray!

In the hospital.

One Year.

Two years.

I'll edit pictures from today for tomorrow, we still have an hour left of someone's birthday!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


You've got it! I'm WAY behind in my blogging that this post is over a week late. That is what happens when you spend 85% of your free time planning the best third birthday of a lifetime! However, you'll see that accomplishment once the party has come & gone. In the mean time, you get backed up posts & lots of excitement! 5 days to the BIG party! Five days til I get my life back! Hooray!

Anyways, after I got done with work on the fourth, we headed down to the largest park in town for their small carnival & fireworks display. The kids are still pretty small & don't seem to find much excitement with all the rides, & most of the games. Yet, they love the commotion, lights, & of course... pick a duck.

This time around though, Daycen wasn't the only one who got to play!

With $9 down the drain for plastic toys & poorly put together softies we headed towards the grandstands to get a spot in the grass to watch the fireworks. We headed to the lower left side & made a small spot for our little family. Of course, right below a large tree so that when we looked upward we only got half of the sky, however, we could at least see the ground show?

Verse the previous years fireworks, this was actually worth coming to. I am in full agreement that the fireworks should be only one day during the duration of the fair not split into two different shows. I'm sure next year they'll change their mind & have two shows again, but at least we can cross our fingers!

Monday, July 11, 2011

THE FIREWORKS. { Willow Springs Garden 2011 }

Every year at dusk, the Willow Springs Garden puts on a fabulous fireworks display. They normally have the fireworks shoot off to live music, sometimes it's in sync. This year, they shot them off randomly yet the display was just as beautiful!

I half expected that within two minutes of the fireworks we were going to need to exit the large field & call it an evening. The year prior, Daycen had a complete melt down the second the bangs & pows began. This year, he grinned cheekily at my brother, stated, "cool!" & continued to watch. As for Ripsi, she seemed to enjoy them as well. She just sat on the blanket, staring wide-eyed at the display before her.

Fireworks. Welcome back to our lives. We've missed you!

Friday, July 8, 2011


This past Sunday one of our favorite family venue's, Willow Springs Garden, was putting on their annual Independence Day festival. They had a petting zoo, antique tractors, airplanes, & cars, craft booths, live bands, karaoke, lots of delicious treats, & tons of activities for the kids! All that & more with absolutely no admission cost!

I allowed Daycen to pick the first activity on our list, & of course he chose to see the animals first! We headed over to the large round barn where all the animals pens were set up, gazing inside, & reaching our fingertips through the bars to feel their rough coats. Each festival we attend, the petting zoo animals are the same, so we have grown accustom to these silly critters. As my children grow, so does the lovely animals we visit throughout the year.

After nearly a hour of tormenting the animals, we convinced Daycen that it was a good idea to go get something to eat. Since it was nearing lunch time & we all had a small grumble in our stomachs. They were serving a pulled pork, chicken, or buffalo dinner inside the townhouse, but we opted for the grilled out hot dogs!

It probably would have been cheaper to hold off & grill out our own. However, sometimes, the money is worth it for the experience! This was Daycen's very first grilled out festival food! & He ate nearly the whole thing!

After eating, we checked out a few of the show cars in the field, along with some of the motorcycles. Daycen was in complete awe of the glistening cars. I have a feeling if it wasn't so hot out, he would have been able to spend the rest of the day there, just admiring the cars over & over... & over again.

This year was also Aripsemae's very First Independence Day Festival & she LOVED it!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

THE BIG POOL { we're loving it }

I had over 80 of my favorite pictures taken this day at the Howard Johnson pool! With the holiday weekend passing us, I was able to get them edited, organized, & set in a story board for you guys to view! It's only a fraction of the pictures taken that afternoon, but at least you'll get a glimpse at the awesome time my family had.

Daycen has only been in a big pool once & even that time it was still slightly a kiddie pool! The second his toes touched the water, he was thrilled! All the memories came flashing back of all the wonderful times he's ever had with water & this one was going to top them all! This pool was over the top! Almost as big as Aripsemae's bows!

He loved it! Than again, with the scorching weather outside, wouldn't you as well?

That's what I figured would be the case with baby sister. Oh, was I wrong! The second she felt the water creeping up on her the whimpering began. The farther out you went, the louder & more frequent the pouting became. Yet, she did a great job for it being her absolutely first time in any water scene other than a small baby tub.

I think we'll be renting out a few hotel rooms in the next couple of months to treat ourselves to a little bit of secluded fun! That's the best thing about hotel pools, they normally aren't swarming with people like the public ones. I'd say, the money to avoid that is well worth it!