Monday, July 27, 2015

Keeping Up With...Family (Friday July 10th)

When I was doing our week 6 of the summer recap, I realized we did a TON on that Friday.  Rather than squeeze it into that recap, I thought the day deserved it's own post.  We had road tripped to Santa Claus Indiana on Thursday and this was our first full day of camping.  Our plan was to hang out around the camp ground for the day.

Our day started with everyone waking up around 6:30am because we were in central time zone so it felt like our normal time to get up.  We were up for about 10 minutes when it started to thunder storm.  That was super fun in a tent!  We quickly got everyone ready and headed out to have a dry breakfast down the road at Denny's.  The day was already stressful but these pancakes made it somewhat better.
While we were eating, we decided to head to Abraham Lincoln's boyhood home which was down the street.  It has stopped raining but was still cloudy and the forecast wasn't good.  We wanted to be away from the campground but still keeping busy.  We had a great time walking all of the trails, seeing what his cabin looked like and learning about his history.  My favorite part was the Trail of 12 stones which had 12 different stones from 12 different important times in Lincoln's life.  Very fun and educational!
The site of Lincoln's log cabin
AJ reading to Daniel about this rock from the White House
Zak & Daniel on a rock from the stage where the Gettysburg Address was delivered
When we finished up there we decided to head into the town of Santa Claus and do all of the things there.  They have a huge Christmas store, a museum about Santa and a candy store.  We enjoyed all three places!  We even got to see Santa and chat with him for a while.  And after the conference, the boys were able to add their names to the "Nice" list.

Selfie with the largest Santa statue
After all of that, the weather was still hit or miss so we decided to head to the movies to see the new Minions movie.  We enjoyed the movie...and LOTS of popcorn.  I was really happy that Zak sat still thru the entire movie.  We were concerned since he's so young but he really likes the Minions & he did great.  We gained an hour by heading back across to Eastern time to see the movie, so instead of 90 minutes it was really only like a 30 minute movie.

When we came out of the movie, the sun was shining and the weather was looking up.  We decided to head back to the camp ground and enjoy some of the stuff that was there.  We played more mini golf, went fishing in the stocked lake (and caught 1 fish), went on a paddle boat ride (exhausting!), made hot dogs and smores over our fire and had a ton of fun!
Daniel's fish
Mini Golf!
When we finally headed to bed that night around 10 it felt like a super long day for us adults.  The kids had a blast and probably would have kept going.  We really packed a lot into one day and were able to make the best of what started out as a stressful situation.  It wasn't the day we had planned but it actually turned out better than we thought it would!

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Keeping Up With...Family (Summer Week 6 - July 4 - July 10)

Last week we started our 4th of July celebration and we continued that on the actual day on Saturday.  We started Saturday at the Westerville parade where everyone had a pretty good time watching it and fighting for candy.  Not as much candy as I remember in the past, but more than enough for my boys.  After that we headed to Carl's house for an awesome dinner.  We ended the day with more fireworks in New Albany.  So much fun celebrating!!
Cousins watching the parade

My guys at the parade
Sparkler fun at the fireworks!
 Sunday we had a recovery day and finished up everything that was on our to do list.  We are leaving for vacation later this week and in addition to our normal weekly stuff, there was a lot of extra stuff to get ready for that.  Actually other than getting to my Zumba classes, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday were pretty much devoted to getting ready to leave.  We had stuff around the house to do, food to make and packing to do.  It was also rainy a lot of those days so the boys spent a lot of time relaxing, watching TV and playing video games.

Thursday we were up bright and early and on the road to Indiana.  We did a great job of having just about everything ready and packed up Wednesday night so Thursday was very easy.  The drive went pretty smoothly, only one potty accident the whole ride.  We stopped at McDonald's for lunch where the boys got Minions toys in their Happy Meals.  We instantly regretted this decision as the toys talked and laughed the rest of the drive.  Never get noisy toys on a road trip!!
Ready for a road trip!
We gained an hour thanks to the time change to Central time and got to Lake Rudolph Campground around 3:00 on Thursday.  Adrian started setting up our camp while I took the boys to play mini golf  and at the playground.  After we were all set up and super hot and sweaty, we put on our bathing suits and headed up to their awesome pool.  We had a great time swimming around and cooling off...especially Zak who could touch in the shallow end and didn't need a life jacket.  He was very excited about this milestone.

I had made shake & bake chicken & potato salad at home for our dinner that night but we quickly decided that pizza and ice cream was a way more fun way to start our vacation.  We ate that, played some more at the pool and the other play ground and finally made our way back to the camp site.  We all turned in early since it was a long day for us and felt longer with the time change.

Friday started very early and was a full day so I think it deserves a separate post.  Stay tuned!!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Keeping Up With...Food (Menu Plan 7/20 - 7/26)

After a two week break I'm back to menu planning for this week and next, before taking another week off for our "staycation."  We have family coming in and will be doing a lot of family dinners, eating out and going to the Ohio State Fair for food.  I'm going to be winging it that week.

But I've noticed that my eating has been really horrible the past month or so and I'm feeling it physically.  So I'm back to menu planning and eating right for the next 2 weeks.  I hope the month of rain is finally over so we can get outside more, hit the farmers markets and enjoy eating less because it's too hot to eat.  :)

Here's what we're eating this week:
Monday - Sour Cream Noodle Bake
Tuesday - Thai Basil Pesto Pasta & Chicken - using zoodles for this
Wednesday - Greek Meatball Salad
Thursday - Pesto Pasta
Friday - Shake & Bake Chicken - we are meeting at the water park after work so we will probably eat in the picnic area there
Saturday - London Broil on our new grill
Sunday - I'm going out for dinner with my book club so the guys will be on their own

Water Flavor - Mango
My mother in law brought me about 10 mangoes last week so I had this flavor last week and saved one for this week as well.  This is seriously my favorite flavor, I love the sweetness of it!  I froze about 7 mangoes so I may use some of that for water flavors in the future, if it doesn't all go into smoothies!

As always, I'm linking up with Laura at Mommy, Run Fast & Jill at Fitness, Health and Happiness.  Go check them out for some more yummy recipes!  Have a great week!

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Keeping Up With...Family (Summer Week 5 - June 27 thru July 3)

This week started out with Saturday being our family work day.  Adrian actually had to work some of the day so I took the boys to swimming and then since it was raining, they played video games & watched TV while I did as much as I could around the house. Very productive day!  So far it is working really well for us to have one day of work and one day of play each weekend.

Sunday was gorgeous so we decided to head up to the zoo for the day.  AJ had hockey camp in the morning so after he got home from that, we all piled in the new van and headed out to get brunch.  We were going to go to Scrambler's, but the line was out of control so we decided to head to IHOP instead.  It actually turned out better for us, they had something everyone loved & we all left full and happy!  We got to the zoo and it was super busy, but we still had a great day.  We saw some animals, rode the new Pirate Island ride, played in the play area and rode a bunch of rides in Jungle Jack's Landing.  We stopped & picked up pizza on the way home & had a relaxing night together.
Pirate Island
Boys on the Frog Hopper

Zak & I waiting for Pirate Island

My favorite animals at the zoo
Then this week became the week of the play dates!  We had friends over Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.  The weather put a damper on some of them, but the boys made the best of it by playing inside when they couldn't be outside.  Wednesday was the best of the 3 days & everyone was outside all day.  The boys love having friends over to play!  Thursday AJ was supposed to go to a friend's house but they had to cancel so we'll reschedule that one.

Thursday Adrian took the day off so we could go to Zoombeezi Bay, but we woke up to very cloudy skies.  We decided it was best if we didn't head over there, especially with thunder storms forcast for the afternoon.  We spent the day relaxing, playing and getting stuff done around the house.  And Friday was actually more of the same until the evening.  It was really nice after Adrian working so much and us going like crazy to just take a step back and relax.

Friday night a lot of the local cities did their fireworks.  We decided to head to Menard's on Broad St to try to watch the Reynoldsburg fireworks.  The weather was still iffy and we didn't want to deal with the crowds in the park where they do the fireworks, especially if it started raining.  We had a pretty good view of those fireworks and were also able to see Gahanna, Whitehull and Red, White & Boom downtown.  The boys were cracking everyone up with their commentary.  They were SO excited!  Daniel applauded for every one, Zak kept yelling "Boom!" & AJ kept saying "This is awesome!"  We got home quickly & watched Boom on TV, which turned into a dance party in our living room.  It was a really great night!
Ready for the fireworks
Zak's first sparkler
Watching the show