Saturday, June 16, 2012

We're going on vacation...

This is what Joel proclaimed all through church prior to us leaving for our trip.  He knew we had the car packed and ready to leave from church.

Our first stop was St. Louis where we stayed with some friends.
They seriously were dressed identical when we arrived!  They also didn't really want me to take their picture (or post it to my blog). :-)

Next stop Meramec Caverns...
Kirstin and I bundled up as it's a little chilly in the cavern.

This is called the "wine table".  Our tour guide, Jason, was thrilled to share with us that there are only 2 formations like this in the world and this is the largest.  I personally think it looks like a malformed animal.

Our family inside the cave on vacation!
We wore both kids because it was an hour and 20 minute tour with no strollers allowed.  Joel thought it was pretty fun to be in the Ergo with Daddy.  Kirstin was content to be with Mommy!

More pictures and vacation fun to come in future posts...

Friday, June 8, 2012

Raindrop, Plop

Just a few days after the sandbox was ready to be played in, we had a full day of rain.  Joel was so disappointed that he couldn't play in the sandbox.  However, we had fun another way.  While Kirstin was napping, I helped Joel get his raincoat and rain boots on to go play in the rain.  He had fun splashing in the puddles and getting wet.  However, it was a chilly day (in the 50s, even though it had been 100 just 2 days before).  

We've been reading Spring books, many of which are about rain or bugs.  While playing in the puddles we both thought about the book "Raindrop, Plop".  We went inside and made hot chocolate, just like the did in the book.  Joel requested "6 tiny marshmallows" in his hot chocolate.  I couldn't figure out why he wanted 6, until I remembered that the book is a counting book and that's how many they marshmallows are in the hot chocolate in the book.  Joel has a great memory! :-)

Special treat of drinking hot chocolate on the couch in the living room.

Raindrop, Plop! 

He was so cute because he knew this was something special.

All snuggled up. Can you see Scheppy poking his head out of the blanket?

He actually looked at the camera!

I just love that I'm able to be home with my kids to create fun moments and memories out of a seemingly disappointing day (rain, so no playing in the new sandbox).  
We had a fun "Raindrop, Plop!" day. 

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Sandbox bliss

Since my kids both have summer birthdays, I've been brainstorming gifts and parties.  Also, Joel loves to go to our neighbors' yard to play in their sandbox.  So, I researched sandboxes. 

Well, I found one that I liked.  The Naturally Playful Sandbox by Step2, which on their website sells for $119.99 plus $9.99 shipping.  The reviews suggest that this is a nice sandbox because it coordinates with yard decor, nice, but not essential to my sandbox needs.  However, it holds 200lbs of sand, has a lid (to keep all the neighborhood wildlife from using it as a bathroom), and will allow 2 kids to sit in the sand.

Now, I didn't want to pay that much for a container for sand, even if it was great and going to provide hours of entertainment for my kids.  So, I did some searching.  It was a little cheaper at for $76.  I called Toys R Us and they had it on sale for $69.99.  However, Toys R Us online had it on sale for Memorial Day weekend for $54.99, with free shipping to the store.  Then, I found a coupon code for $10 off that specific sandbox from Toys R US!  So, I paid $44.99 plus tax!!! :-)  (Ok, technically, my parents paid that because they got it for the kids for their birthday present, but still, I was excited for my deal!).  

The sand was also on sale at Home Depot for Memorial Day weekend!  :-)

Checking out the new (empty) sandbox.  We found a shady spot in our yard with a tree that hangs over top, so even as the sun moves throughout the day, the sandbox is in the shade.

My sweet girl!

Kirstin is helping Daddy to open the sand.  *Their matching white hats with UV protection were also purchased at Toys R Us on clearance for $1 each!

Serious concentration

Filling up the sandbox

The dump truck and monster truck fit!  They even fit with the lid on!! :-)

This sand stuff feels different.  Yes, she's tasted it a few times too and gets upset when she's removed from the sandbox after putting it in her mouth multiple times.

Dump truck was full

Another day and back in the sandbox...everyday for hours!! :-)

Oh, how we love the sandbox!  We've even figured out to put a large beach towel next to it so that Kirstin can sit with me outside the sandbox, but still play with it (this minimizes the amount of sand she eats!)

The neighbors have even come to our yard to check out the new sandbox.