It was nice to see you at the table for the holiday! You have a wonderful way of bringing families together, like my loved ones who gathered under the same roof for a shared Thanksgiving meal, laughter exchange, Black Friday advertisement reviews, and a friendly re-match of Jenga. I’m sorry you couldn’t join in on the fun, but I do appreciate the sacrifice you made for my belly; your tenderness didn’t go unnoticed. I hope you understand I meant no disrespect when I gobbled you up; that’s how I show my love for you.
For what it’s worth, I returned to frozen pizza and ramen noodles the next day when Grandma and Grandpa were no longer hosting a fancy, delicious supper. So please don’t judge me for the teeth marks you endured while I indulged in that necessary second helping on Thanksgiving Day.
This year’s gun deer season was a huge success…. if you were hunting for peace, giggles, and quality time with my dad, like I was!
I got to hang out in the deer stand 3 days this year, and when I was left behind, I just stared out our living room windows, waiting for dad to come get me.
It isn’t easy being the hunter-gatherers for our family…. This year, we had to battle a winter storm, we learned a painful lesson about how cold weather affects one’s phone battery, and I had to resort to playing my Nintendo Switch on the small screen.
Still, I love the part where we hang out at the warm and cozy cabin… kickin’ back, playing cards, and getting ready for a long winter. That’s the stuff memories are made of!
It had been too long since we visited Papa so we packed up the car, hoped Genesee would sleep most of the way, and then headed to the east coast (of Wisconsin). And let me tell you, even though we don’t see each other often enough, Papa Florence knows the way to my heart: a good train show! We had so much fun that G and I decided to win Papa’s heart right back: by wearing our best Green Bay Packer gear on Game Day Sunday!
We love our Papa time! In fact, we had so much fun that Genesee was asking if we could make a return visit to Papa’s place as soon as we left his driveway. And again, at the stop sign. And again, on the interstate. And ALL. THE. WAY. HOME.
So, we’ll be back, Papa. And if Genesee has any say, we won’t just visit for a short weekend; we’ll probably be moving in with you. Thanks for the fun adventure!
This year’s Halloween was a little sweeter than usual since we met at Colin’s house to terrorize his neighborhood and then reconvened in his kitchen for a hot chocolate and pizza party!
While out and about, I tricked everyone into believing I was the Joker, but the joke was on me when I tumbled over my own feet as I ran from the first house to the next. Whoops! After brushing myself off and making a full recovery, I had plenty of candy and smiles to show for my adventure. (I even grabbed a few extra treats for Genesee since she was a tired, shivering party pooper.)
It was so much fun exchanging Kit Kats and kindergarten stories with my old pal, Colin. But thanks to Todd’s costume party the following Saturday, Halloween didn’t end on Halloween this year. So, mom & I baked up our famous candy corn-frosted cookies, jumped into Dad’s Batmobile, invited a couple of our Mouseketeer friends, and arrived at Todd’s haunted house of horrors fashionably late (because… Mom).
It was all fun and games until Genesee fell down the stairs. She, too, made a full recovery. Next year’s costumes will consist of helmets and bubble wrap, according to Mom.
Bumps and bruises and all, I still love me a good Halloween party and can’t wait for Todd to outdo himself next year. Right, Todd?
Question: What did the pumpkin say to the pumpkin carver?
Answer: Cut it out!
…your parks are cooler than ours.
Luckily, we’re not afraid to cross state lines to explore a recommended playground.
Since “the trees are about to show us the beauty of letting go of things,” it’s only right that I pay my respects to summer…
Fishing with Dad and Grandpa
Fish to fry!
Or maybe we’ll just head to Culver’s…
…and enjoy their fish dinner!
Genesee test-driving Ashlee’s first car
Uh-oh! I’d like to report a stolen vehicle.
I lost my first tooth!
I love my sister!
Shady ladies (and Dad)
The Giggle Squad
Gazing off into the distance. And eating a pretzel.
Enjoying the ride
When Dad dresses my sister
Washing cars all day…
…and all night.
Checking out my new school’s playground
Chalking it up
G reading to Ooh-Ooh-Ah-Ah
G loves Garrett!
Visiting Garrett & Morgan’s chickens
Cortney helping Genesee eat her meal. (The irony)
My friends begging mom to let me sleepover
Powdered donuts for breakfast
If I seem traumatized by tornado warnings, this is the day that caused it.
Climbing the trails with Dad
Visiting Aunty Bethy
Enjoying stories in Beth’s garden
Meeting the Cooks
Summer walks with Dad
G learned how to eat full pieces of pizza
Practicing without training wheels
G screams for ice cream. Literally.
We love a good shopping cart
G loves when I read to her!
G never leaves Dad’s side
The proper way to eat garlic bread
McDonald’s is getting fancy
I love my Ash
G’s potty training sticker chart
Shh… we’re hiding
Cruisin with Cory
My sister is a goof!
Always wear protection…
…at the shooting range.
Making sure Charlie drinks his milk
Parade of Homes…
…Just like a camper show, only funner!
Potty training Ooh-Ooh-Ah-Ah
Diaper change #307
And just when the caterpillar thought the world was over…
…it turned into a butterfly!
I love our patio nights!
The biker gang
I’ve got the hang of it!
Taking my sis on a spin!
Hang on, little one!
G’s first haircut!!
Frisbee at sunset
Slip ‘n slide!
Watching me go Wee!!
She adores me. Can you blame her?
Here G goes ’round the Merry-Go-Round
G hiking with Dad
Enjoying the fresh air
G loves wearing safety glasses
Checking out the steam engine (Big Boy) that came to town!
Riverside with Grandpa
I ran into my friends at McDonald’s!
A walking stick!!
Meet my new friend.
He likes to hang out on my hand…
…and shoulder… and sometimes my parents’ bed. (oops!)
Free rides from Cortney!
My new school! Time for pictures.
Playing at the pond
Cooking with Laura and Andrew
Yum! That’s a new twist on chorizo and eggs.
Best night ever!
We love going to Grandma & Grandpas!
Posing for the magazine cover of Better Homes & Gardens
It was the summer of catching fish and frogs and fascinating sunsets.
It was the summer full of sidewalk chalk, slip ‘n slides, sprinklers, sparklers, and sibling 4-wheeler rides.
It was the summer of parading homes, losing teeth, discovering walking sticks, and raising Monarch butterflies.
It was the summer of getting home-schooled by Grandma, achieving my goal of learning how to ride a bike, potty training Ooh-Ooh-Ah-Ah (G’s monkey), ending Genesee’s pacifier addiction, and starting my kindergarten career.
It was the summer of 2019.
Perhaps the best way to celebrate a successful first week of kindergarten while also distracting ourselves from missing dad while he’s away for a 2-week hunting trip?
Chuck E. Cheese, of course. Where a kid can be a kid.
Look at those smiles; the Cheese knows how to please!
Today marked my send-off to Kindergarten and I did pretty well, considering my track record for transitions and drop-offs! In fact, I was mostly full of excitement, nerves, and curiosity until my eyes started to well up with sadness. Luckily, my meltdown was averted when a new little friend named Isaiah comforted me and helped my face remember how to smile.
Stay tuned for my kindergarten chronicles… I’m going to make new friends, get my learn on, discover more of who I am, and have so much fun along the way! I’m especially looking forward to library visits, art class, music sessions, the pet therapy dogs, and lunch. It’s going to be a great year!!
Since our friendship would soon get split up as a result of living in different zip codes, we decided the best way to spend Kindergarten Eve was to make Ferguson memories with a couple of my favorite friends, Colin & Amaya.
So there we were, joy-riding through the pumpkin patch on wagon wheels, painting our faces with twin tattoos, and giggling between every bite of the obligatory caramel apple.
Because nothing prepares you for going separate ways better than a challenging corn maze. And nothing shows how we’ll still keep up with each other better than a cooperative pedal tractor race. And since nothing can teach our friendship how to blossom better than an apple orchard, we never said goodbye that day. It was simply “See ya later,” sealed with a hug. And another hug, just for good measure.