Saturday, July 13, 2013

First Manicure

A big moment for the girls in my house. Normally I am too practical and frugal for such things, but Eden got a gift certificate to a nail salon for her birthday (um, 9 months ago), so finally last weekend I decided to take both Eden and Tessa for their first manicure. Ansley was content to watch. Can you see how thrilled and enthralled she is there in the background?

manicure

They felt so grown up and glamorous.

manicure 7-2013

manciure with E 7-2013

Both girls chose a BRIGHT orange for their nail color. I was impressed with the thumb flowers. A cute touch.

manicure thumbnails

It was a fun outing. And seeing these two and their painted nails reminded me of a scene in our own home (in NYC) about five years ago.

Here are my little girly girls attempting one of their first at-home manicures.

I’m really not much of a girly girl myself, but I have to admit that this type of thing is pretty fun to share with my daughters. Girls are too fun!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Madison, WI—Spring Break 2013 part II

On our way home from The Dells, we stopped in Wisconsin’s capital, Madison. We saw the capital building, and drove around the University of Wisconsin campus. We also learned first-hand how bitter cold the weather is up in those northern parts. I felt bad for the students whose main form of transportation was walking. Brrr! That wind chilled us to the bone!

DSC_1103

Then I hung out at our hotel with the younger three while Tom took the big kids to a movie. Hotel hangout time is always fun, no matter what you do. It just feels like vacation.

2013-03-20 june 2013 0062013-03-20 june 2013 007

I love this “Cougar” sweatshirt Eli has. I bought it YEARS ago from Children’s Place, thinking I’d have another boy sometime and could use it. Glad I finally do and finally can.

2013-03-20 june 2013 008

The next day we checked out Madison’s children’s museum. Those are always great. This bench-back made from books glued together was a unique touch.

2013-03-21 june 2013 002

2013-03-21 june 2013 004

DSC_1105

2013-03-21 june 2013 007

DSC_1107

Can you believe this piano? Tyler and Tessa had fun playing it.

2013-03-21 june 2013 009

Then we hit up the free zoo in Madison. It wasn’t very big, but it featured some awesome wildlife. We walked briskly past the neat outdoor animals trying to quickly take them in, but spent most of our time with the indoor exhibits.

2013-03-21 june 2013 011

DSC_1108

These orangutans entertained us for a LONG time. The male busily tried to amuse and entertain himself by stretching and rigging swings with this rubber tubing. It was fascinating to watch.

DSC_1110

DSC_1111

The female just sat and rolled her eyes at him. So cute and humanlike.

2013-03-21 june 2013 015

DSC_1112

Then we made the five-hour drive home. It was a great four-day vacay to Wisconsin. Again, love the Midwest where the states are closer together (but not TOO close), so we can visit the interesting cities that surround us!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Wisconsin Dells—Spring Break part 1

The pictures can do most of the talking for this Spring Break excursion (back in March). We had a blast in the indoor waterpark capital of the world—Wisconsin Dells, WI. We decided not to tell the kids where we were going and just let them guess by the direction the car headed, and other little clues.

This was the wintry scene we passed along the way.

2013-03-18 june 2013 001

2013-03-18 june 2013 002

But it sure didn’t feel like winter at our destination! At least once we stepped indoors to the balmy 80 degrees in the hotel’s water park. When the kids figured out where we were going, they were super excited…and when we pulled into the parking lot of our hotel/resort with water slides bursting out of its sides, they could hardly contain themselves.

DSC_1084

This place was pretty incredible. It was hard to get pictures of the really big slides, but there were several and they were awesome.

DSC_1072

DSC_1073

DSC_1075

DSC_1076

We loved being in a contained, climate-controlled environment to enjoy all the water fun. No sunscreen! So nice. We lucked out and came at a time that wasn’t crowded, so it was easy to let the kids run around and go down the slides over and over. When we were exhausted and starving, we could head back to our room for food and rest, or just lounge on the many poolside chairs and watch the others play. It was a great set-up.

2013-03-19 june 2013 002

2013-03-19 june 2013 004

DSC_1077

DSC_1078

Here is Tyler dumping a bucket of water on an unsuspecting stranger below him. He enjoyed this little game way too much, and way too many times. Sneaky little dude.

DSC_1079

DSC_1085

DSC_1087

2013-03-19 june 2013 010

2013-03-19 june 2013 014

2013-03-20 june 2013 002

Fun for all ages and all swimming abilities. We loved the lazy river, the water roller coaster, the tube rides, the kiddie pool…everything!

DSC_1088

DSC_1089

DSC_1091DSC_1092DSC_1095

DSC_1099

DSC_1098

DSC_1100

And the hot tub—one of my favorite spots.

DSC_1101

DSC_1102

At under 5 hours from our home, this was a perfect Spring Break getaway for 2 nights and 3 days. (Groupon helped make it even more perfect)

When it was really time to go, we tried to de-chlorinate ourselves and then headed south towards home. But we were not quite ready for the fun to end, so we decided to stop for a night in Wisconsin’s capital, Madison, which was just an hour down the road. To be continued…