4th of July Canceled

Due to the recent Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, after a 50-year precedent that gave women the right to make autonomous decisions about their own bodies and reproductive functions, mom and many women across the country have declared the 4th of July canceled due to a shortage of independence.

With implications that this reversal of law could also threaten additional rights like interracial marriage, gay marriage, access to birth control, and in vitro fertilization (IVF), losing freedom definitely made the 4th of July holiday less happy, so we had to go in search of joy. And since no one does joy better than Yogi Bear, we followed the interstate to Jellystone Park in Warrens, Wisconsin.

To distract us from the reality that Genesee will come of age with fewer rights than her grandmothers had, we jumped out our frustration on the big, bouncy pillow and then we played miniature golf, splashed in the waterpark, learned the game of Gaga Ball, shot some hoops, watched outdoor movies, fished in the mornings, cleaned fish in the afternoons, took a train tour around the premises, had a photo shoot with Boo Boo the statue, and hosted Colin and his family for a day.

We played, and played, and played. Because tomorrow we may need to fight for our rights.

Hello, Hatfield!

It’s been a while since the Goodenough Gang camped at Hatfield, but once we arrived, we thrived!

From Hot Lava Tag on the playground and Adult vs Kiddo Bean Bag Toss, to hot dog dinners over the fire and outdoor movies projected onto the back of our motorhome, camping is definitely the good life!

Breakfast on the Farm

After a three-year hiatus, we made our return to Dairy Breakfasts! We got up so early, I thought we were going fishing, but instead, we were going eating! It’s a hard life.

Mom missed out on the fun because she was in the Grand Cayman Islands, but because the show must go on and the pancakes must get consumed, we forged ahead without her. And even though the breakfast didn’t quite compare to the meals we get to regularly enjoy at Grandma & Grandpa’s house on Sunday mornings, it was still a perfect day!

Spring is in the air (2022)

For some people, spring is for welcoming the animals back from hibernation and witnessing the seedlings turn to bloom. For me and sis, we’re just here for the breakfast in bed with made-to-order bacon, exploring frisbee golf courses, and birthday cake shenanigans!

Jordan Kappen Basketball Camp

At eight years old, I got to experience my first basketball camp in Black River Falls, and I. Am. Hooked.

Besides getting to skip 3 days of summer school, and on top of learning the fundamentals of the game alongside my best bud, Danny, I especially liked the part where I earned the much revered title of “Camp MVP,” thanks to those late night games of HORSE with dad! Not only does that designation grant me bragging rights, but it also came with a cool t-shirt. I’m now pumped to continue my basketball career in style, and with a boost in confidence. After all, if I don’t make it to the NBA, at least I’ll have collected a free wardrobe along the way.


We did it! Before Memorial Day arrived, I transformed into a third grader…

…and Genesee became a kindergartener.

Mrs. Miller and Ms Toni taught us well and we LOVED them for it, but the time has come to dazzle our brilliance in front of new teachers and bigger classrooms. We. Are. Ready. For. It. But first, summer!

Rush in the Spring (2022)

Spring soccer with my Rush club team was a blast! After our initial poor performance at the Des Moines tournament, we finished our regular season in undefeated fashion, even with one man down or no subs.

Still, even though winning is fun, the best part for me was participating in the victory lap at the conclusion of each game, because there’s just something about receiving high fives from your smiling, gushing parents fan club (especially since last season’s protocol was to wave from a COVID-safe distance). In fact, this lap of love even topped the feeling of scoring a goal in the final game of the season, after spending most of my playing time in a defender position. You might not have assumed this after bearing witness to my over-the-top celebratory run-dance, but truly, the highlight was not the super impressive, career-building goal that I scored; What I loved most about this season was the receiving line of proud supporters.

Thank you, loved ones, for faithfully cheering us on and for always being there to tie the occasional loose shoe string in the middle of the games. We hear you on the sidelines even if we’re too cool to acknowledge as such.

Surviving Dad’s Birthday Hike

For Dad’s birthday this year, mom surprised him with a fun hike around Devil’s Lake! The weather was surprisingly perfect, and the element of surprise continued when we accidentally found ourselves on the Balanced Rock Trail: a steep climbing path with stone steps on the south face of the East Bluff that is assigned the level “Difficult” (if you’re paying attention).

Although this was Genesee’s inaugural hike outside of Dad’s backpack, she still rocked it! Mom’s performance, on the other hand, was a little more questionable. Thank goodness her shaky legs were unaware they were trembling on a “difficult” path less traveled. Otherwise, the anticipation of death might have killed the mood a bit.

In the end, we lived to see two spectacular views… 1) an overlook of the beautiful Devil’s Lake, and 2) the interior view of our Toyota Highlander from the safety of our seatbelts.

Ready, Set, Action City Trip!

Post quarantine era, I was not mad about the return to field trips, especially when it meant second graders got to splash around at the Metropolis Resort, enjoy a delicious pizza party, and then play mini golf at Action City afterward (for those who could sweet-talk their chaperone mom into getting a sneak peek of the arcade area).

Although you can never go wrong with a water park, the day was initially dampened by the tragic news of a house fire that killed 4 Melrose-Mindoro elementary students. I cried in Mrs. Miller’s class as the news sunk in deeper by witnessing her tears.

So, the joy of a field trip was a timely and much-needed distraction from the sadness and concern that subsumed our small community. I suspect the teachers even gave us more free rein to make happy childhood memories because life felt that much more precious… We played, we laughed, and we even ran our little hearts out in walk-only zones.

Upon my return home, the family dinner conversation held space for every fun detail of my trip, before revisiting and improving our fire drill protocol, and then hugging each other a little bit tighter.