Friday, November 21, 2014

a blast from the past

This is a picture of  Dannell's that I've never seen before and I love it.

You girls are so darn cute. 

Love forever, Grandma and Grandpa and Everybody

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Sunday, November 16, 2014

cold, cold, cold, but we don't care

 They wanted to go out there anyway, even in the sharp wind.

 The men went out to supervise. 

It's such a very good thing to be little with cousins and have dads and uncles who will brave the cold, and it's also good to have a nice big hill that isn't too steep.

You crazy little kooky people are simply the best.

love forever, Grandma and Grandpa

today was the day

 The journey to this day was not a straight line, but we made it.  mc was Confirmed.    Sometimes it's called Affirmation of Baptism instead.   It's a Lutheran tradition, and today was a wonderful day. 

Afterward John and Dannell served a feast, and all the cousins were together.

I said, "Smile for me!"  He did turn in my direction at least.

Her gifts, very lovely.

And the cake:

m.c. we are all so happy you persevered and this day came to be.  It was an honor to be there with you and celebrate.

We love you,   Jay and Val and Everybody

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Friday night kitchen party and a trip to the parents

 Last night there was an impromptu party in the kitchen.  It was good.

This morning we drove up north to visit Jay's parents.   Dan and Alicia were there too.
The lake is starting to freeze, but it's been cold, and the forecast states the overnight temps will be around zero all week, and the highs don't even approach 32 degrees between now and Thanksgiving.

Thanks Mom and Dad for a lovely, relaxing day, and for the beautiful meal.  

love always, Jay and Val and Everybody

Thursday, November 13, 2014


Heidi sent a big package of construction paper, so we took inspiration and made some goofy Thanksgiving turkeys--pj's has eyes with long eyelashes drawn with sparkly crayon.

And it's winter now, at least a month earlier than we expected.


The kids are happy enough about it.

We had lunch with my parents and my sister, pizza and lots of laughing.

Tonight some of the big kids are at the Garth Brooks concert so Maria is watching John's kids, and we have pj overnight, and at some point earlier this week I mentioned maybe we'd go to the pool and they didn't forget.

 Man, I was not in the mood for this.   I'm tired!  It's like 18 degrees out!

And then we got to the pool and parked the car and realized we'd forgotten the towels at home.

"Dance around like idiots laughing, and don't even grab the damned towels.  Your behavior today is really not impressing me."

(They have been super squirrely and also argumentative with each other.  ANNOYING.)

Going home and returning was just so unamusing, but then I remembered Kohl's is just around the block, so we went to damn Kohl's and bought towels while they waited in the car.

When I got back in the car, in the dark, it seemed like things were wet on the console where the shifter is.  I turned on the light and it was full of my diet coke they'd somehow knocked over!

I yelled some more about what were they doing, and this can't get wet, and the compartment where I throw coins was full to the brim, so I stuffed a corner of a towel in there to mop up, all the while bitching.

Finally we made it into the water.
 It got better after that.

And then the lens was too fogged up from the steamy air to take any more pictures.
Sam is back on prednisone for her skin, blast all those problems into the past.  The vet put medicine in her ears again, and she's doing well.

But we didn't realize all her newfound energy and ridiculousness were medication side effects--her eating everything and begging at the table, raiding the wastebasket, having to go outside at 6 am, humping the kids, just generally being a lot busier dog was the medicine.

 Jay's taken it a few times for his back and he didn't seem to have any side effects.   We laughed about it, how Dad never acted like this.

Tim still talks a little bit like the Little Tim used to with the overly round vowels.    He laughed and said, "Oh yeah, first he ate garbage. THEN he humped the kids."

Oh my goodness.  There he is playing Subway Surfer.
And today is the end of a very wonderful Thursday, and Friday is next.

Onward.  We can do it.    love you all so, Val, aka MOM, aka Grandma

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


Alicia emailed these pictures she took yesterday as I had to leave to go work awhile.

I left and she was outside supervising and the kids were existing in a state of delight, along with Sam, regarding the SNOW!

Yes, and Tim, practical man, couldn't be bothered to run down to the basement by the office and look for a better hat. He took a too-small girl's hat.

What do we care?

That's my buddy, b.g.

I used to babysit him all the time. We had huge, expanding days together.  I nuzzled his neck and cradled his tiny little ribs in my hands at naptime.  The kids have been going for a while now to a structured daycare run by a really nice woman I've met, named Debby.

Truly?  Debby is great.

She's a baby-tender, toddler-coaxer/slash drill sergeant to the parents. I understand and appreciate that.

But it's still very fun to have the little guys and their mom on a snow day.

That very beautiful child in the green hat?  He's the one we're calling Napoleon now.

He's our fine little dictator.

Oh my goodness, how he makes me laugh as he strides around giving orders.

You know, what would the world even be without kids?

This weather mess is all an annoying pain in the neck.

But look at them going crazy in the snow. I remember doing it too when I was a child.

Happy November, everybody.

love always, Val