Cake Fail or Win? 

March 16, 2015



Before you pass judgement, let me tell you two things.  First, it’s a Minecraft cake for Ava’s sixth birthday in two weeks. Second, if you don’t know what Minecraft is – like me until three months ago — I want to tell you there are no Minecraft birthday supplies anywhere. They must not have sold the rights or something. So if you want a Minecraft cake, the only help you have is your imagination.  (And I will admit, the Internet.)

Okay. Now you can pass judgement.  While it’s not one of my best cakes, I am going to take the win for making the best cake I could with what I had.  Let’s hope Ava chooses something more conventional next year… 

Leprechaun Trap

March 15, 2015

Ava’s class made leprechaun traps in school last week. She left it out Friday night and this is what she found in the morning. 



That sneaky little guy escaped Ava’s trap. But not before making a mess with his footprints and leaving her a note. 

Maybe she will have better luck next year! 

Attention Dog Lovers

February 28, 2015

This post is for you, dog lovers. I haven’t posted many pictures of our sweet Eddie lately. He continues to grow bigger and bigger. And he continues to steal our hearts.

My sweet puppy loves his bone so much, he can't put it down... even for a nap.

My sweet puppy loves his bone so much, he can’t put it down… even for a nap.

The view when I sometimes walk into my bedroom. He is almost getting to big to fit under the bed now.

The view when I sometimes walk into my bedroom. He is almost getting too big to fit under the bed now.

My puppy has awesome paws.

My puppy has awesome paws.

Best buddies.

Best buddies.

Eddie, aka "The Snuggler"

Eddie, aka “The Snuggler”

The Snuggler with his toy dragon

The Snuggler with his toy dragon

The Snuggler thinking he is still a little puppy.

The Snuggler thinking he is still a little puppy.

The look he gives us right before he barks to let us know he wants something.

The look he gives us right before he barks to let us know he wants something.

Notice he is sleeping in most of the shots. That’s the only time he holds still enough to take a photo.

Eddie and I are starting dog obedience school next month. We are looking forward to teaching him some more commands, although he already knows a few simple tricks.

It’s been pretty cold here for the last few months so he’s starting to get cabin fever. He loves his yard but we all can only stay out and play for a little while. His mind will be blown this spring when we start spending entire evenings outside as a family. And when Erik strikes up the grill?! He will be in heaven!

Jamaica Family Vacation

February 28, 2015

Earlier this month, we visited Jamaica with Erik’s family.  The week was full of relaxing, swimming, and eating delicious meals. Here are few pictures from our trip.

A family photo at sunset. Funny who we all thought to wear the same thing...

A family photo at sunset. Funny how we all thought to wear the same thing…

IMG_7218

IMG_0690

IMG_0658

The kids hanging at the coffee/ice cream bar.

The kids hanging at the coffee/ice cream bar.

IMG_7111

The adults before dinner one evening.

The adults before dinner one evening.

The sunsets were amazing.

The sunsets were amazing.

Disney World 2015

January 26, 2015

We got back from Disney World last Friday. We brought home lots of great memories…and the flu. So I won’t write a lot because I’m under the weather. But here are some highlights from our trip. I will warn you there are a lot of photos. Don’t feel bad if you don’t make it to the end of this post. My fuzzy brain couldn’t decide which ones to include so I included a lot. Good luck.

My favorite family pictures, I think. We took this our first day at Disney World.

My favorite family pictures, I think. We took this our first day at Disney World.

It is so fun to be a kid at Disney World.

It is so fun to be a kid at Disney World.

Another favorite photo. Ava was a little shy around many of the characters. But not Minnie Mouse.

Another favorite photo. Ava was a little shy around many of the characters. But not Minnie Mouse.

Ava and Cinderella's evil step sister. So fun.

Ava and Cinderella’s evil step sister. So fun.

A view from our room at the Art of Animation resort.

A view from our room at the Art of Animation resort.

I do want to say that I was completely impressed with our resort for many reasons. One was that I was kinda expecting this value resort to be overrun with loud, obnoxious children. (The value resorts have more character-themed rooms. Along with the affordable price tag, the value resorts attract families with small children.) My expectation could not have been more wrong. Every child had a supervising parent nearby. I honestly didn’t see one loud or rowdy child while I was there. Even though the resort has over 1100 family suites and 900 standard rooms, we never felt like it was busy or crowded.  The rooms were quiet, clean and incredibly efficient.

Ok. Back to photos.

We got to enter the park before it opened and so we got a couple amazing shots of Ava.

We got to enter Magic Kingdom before it opened and so we got a couple amazing shots of Ava.

Notice the empty Main Street at the Magic Kingdom.

Notice the empty Main Street at the Magic Kingdom.

Ava was made into Princess Rapunzel at the Bippity Boppity Boutique in Cinderella's Castle.

Ava was made into Princess Rapunzel at the Bippity Boppity Boutique in Cinderella’s Castle.

I love this photo of Ava having fun at the BBB. This is what childhood should be like.

I love this photo of Ava having fun at the BBB. This is what childhood should be like.

She got to do a photo shoot after her make over.

She got to do a photo shoot after her make over.

One attraction at the Magic Kingdom includes a reenactment of Belle's story using the kids in the small group as the characters. Here Ava is Belle's father stuck in the Beast's cold dungeon.

One attraction at the Magic Kingdom includes a reenactment of Belle’s story using the kids in the small tour group as the characters. Here Ava is Belle’s father stuck in the Beast’s cold dungeon.

Belle and Ava. Notice Luminaire behind them. He was fully automated and three dimensional. It was amazing.

Belle and Ava. Notice Luminaire behind them. He was fully automated and three dimensional. It was amazing.

A selfie before a kiddie rollercoaster.

A selfie before a kiddie rollercoaster.

Another favorite photo of Anna and Ava. Just precious.

Another favorite photo of Anna and Ava. Just precious.

Family photo at Epcot.

Family photo at Epcot.

Ava and Mickey!

Ava and Mickey!

Ava and Olaf!

Ava and Olaf!

A family photo at Animal Kingdom our last day.

A family photo at Animal Kingdom our last day.

Congrats! You made it to the end. I may post a few more pics after I have a chance to review them with a clear head. Until then, I’ll be on the couch.

Christmas 2014: Part 2

December 30, 2014

Ava and I drove home Wednesday evening to spend Christmas Eve with Erik. Erik was not able to go to Moorhead with us because he had to work. When we got home, Erik had little appetizers to eat while we opened presents.

Ava’s present from us is a trip to Disney World. She has been talking about it for the last year and we have told her that we have to save money before we can go. So it was a surprise to her. Here is the video of her opening the present announcing the trip to Disney World.

While she was excited, she doesn’t quite have the response we were expecting. When I asked her the next day if she was excited about going to Disney World, she said, “Yes, Mommy, really excited.  But I didn’t want to get too excited last night. Because then I would be too excited to sleep and Santa would not come.” Smart girl.

Christmas Day we ate cheese, meat, and chocolate fondue and it was delicious.

IMG_7032

Erik’s Dad’s family got together the Saturday after Christmas for a meal at Aunt Sue’s house. It was great to see more family over the holidays.

IMG_7052

Notice Ava and Hanna snuggled into the chair like two peas in a pod. Hanna is such a wonderful big cousin to Ava.

Great Grandma Norma poses with three of her five great grandchildren.

Great Grandma Norma poses with three of her five great grandchildren.

Hanna, Hans, and Ava love their Grandma Claudia!

Hanna, Hans, and Ava love their Grandma Claudia!

We are very excited for the New Year to begin. I wish you a very happy and healthy 2015!

Ava and my holiday festivities began the Sunday before Christmas when we drove to Moorhead to spend a few days with my mom and my sister’s family. After almost 40 years, my mom hopes to sell her house this spring or summer. So this was probably the last Christmas we will spend there. Here are a few photos from our visit.

Making Christmas cookies with Grandma.

Making Christmas cookies with Grandma.

SkyZone just opened in Fargo so we had to try it out. The kids were very excited.

SkyZone just opened in Fargo so we had to try it out. The kids were very excited.

It took Ava about five seconds to figure out the trampolines.

It took Ava about five seconds to figure out the trampolines.

We also went bowling at the Bowler in Fargo. The Bowler has been open for 55 years and I love that it has not changed.

We also went bowling at the Bowler in Fargo. The Bowler has been open for 55 years and I love that it has not changed.

This was Ava's first bowling experience. She loved it!

This was Ava’s first bowling experience. She loved it!

Christmas Eve would not be complete without the party fountain. Peyton especially liked it. I think she had seven glasses of punch.

Christmas Eve would not be complete without the party fountain. Peyton especially liked it. I think she had seven glasses of punch.

Ava made a fort downstairs complete with a hot tub outside. Eddie just had to take a dip in the hot tub.  And a nap.

Ava made a fort downstairs complete with a hot tub outside. Eddie just had to take a dip in the hot tub. And a nap.

Opening presents by the tree. I have opened many, many Christmas presents over the years in that exact location.

Opening presents by the tree. I have opened many, many Christmas presents over the years in that exact location.

Something I will not forget about this visit to Moorhead was how Eddie and Scout (Kim's dog) played. Scout is almost 8 years old so I figured Eddie would just irritate him. But no. They played non-stop. Until they crashed on Wednesday afternoon.

Eddie and Cousin Scout (Kim’s dog) have met before and Eddie has always been hesitant to play.  But not this time. They played non-stop until they crashed on Wednesday afternoon. We were all in disbelief how hard and long they played. Kim commented that Scout has not played this much since he was a puppy.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.