Saturday, August 19, 2017

Brenton Arboretum

I took my camera out today to delete my card before a family photoshoot and realized that I had quite a few photos that I hadn't shared yet! I have not been good about pulling it out this summer and that is a good reminder to myself to keep it handy especially on weekends now that we are getting busy with back to school things. 


We took an afternoon excursion over to Brenton Arboretum on a cool but sunny August day and it was so beautiful!


Anna is so funny- I asked her to smell the flowers and she is obviously smelling...a stick. Did it at least smell good?


The arboretum has this super fun natural playground for kids and yes...it is mostly sticks and sand but it is super fun. I think they would play here all day if I let them. I like going here but it is super sunny and so it can get warm on hot days. 


I hope to update a few more times before August gets the better of me! See you soon!




Monday, July 31, 2017

End of July


The rest of July flew by that I hardly even knew what we did! I feel like after the newness of summer wears off, we find ourselves settling into a good rhythm that involves a bit more at home time and just enjoying the fun part of being of family in summer. 


The girls have been so weird about their naps that often they will refuse to nap and then later I will find them passed out randomly while playing. They are still little girls that get tired even though they think they are already big. 

We did make it to the drive in for a double feature of Despicable ME 3 and Spiderman: Homecoming. We met up with our friends, the Crosses, and that helped pass the time before the movie started. It was a nice night and a fun tradition that does take a bit of effort to coordinate but makes for a great night out as a family. 


Also lots of playdoh and playtime...



My lilies bloomed and they made the house smell glorious for over a week! They are such a fun addition to the garden and remind me of my sweet Trace as the bulbs were a gift from my grandma after he died. 


The girls have good days and bad days where they can play together nicely or be terrible. When they are playing together nicely, it is so cute to hear their back and forth chatter and team work in creating their stories. It is so magical that I feel like I don't want to do anything to break the spell. Other times they are literally at each other's throats and....argh! 


Scott and Michael were gone to a family wedding in Oregon for a week at the end of July. I was excited that they got to go on an adventure together but it was a long week by myself with the girls. We did plan some outings like to Target which were mostly to walk around and get out of the house, but I did surprise the big girls with some new on clearance toys. We also checked on Harry and kept him company while Michael was away. The biggest thing was that we finally had a chunk of consistent time to get the girls going on the potty and wearing underwear all the time. It was a bit of hump to get over and I think the real reason it worked was that it was just me and the girls at home and no one else to interfere. We literally had nothing else on our schedule except to work on going in the potty. 


We also went on some walks at Jester which the girls really like! 


I finished my summer lesson program-9 weeks with 32 students! It was fun to hear how much some students improved and it was neat keeping up with them all summer. 


More refusing to nap and then later falling asleep from Anna. 

(and again)


At the end of July, we headed to NorthEast Iowa to visit my grandparents while Scott did a day of Ragbrai. It was a good excuse to visit and we had a really nice time. 


Northeast Iowa is so beautiful! 


It was nice to catch up with family and spend some time with my grandparents. It was a long drive but I'm glad we did it! 


I think that wraps up July! Thanks for stopping by! 

Sunday, July 23, 2017

1st half of July

Here is a little bit of July so far. Summer is flying by but we are really into our groove now and are having a great time. I love summer! 


Michael went to VBS one night with a friend of his- so thoughtful of them to invite him! 
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Our water table has been getting plenty of action as it is so fun to play out back for a bit after dinner when it is nice and shady. It never feels too hot down there, such a blessing. 

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We ventured over to the Science Center one morning before our pass ran out and the kids did pretty well. We were stroller free and the girls had fun being able to walk on their own volition. However, it was hard to keep track of all three of them at once. Another big mistake was seeing an IMAX movie as girls were not interested at all. They did have fun with the animals and pushing the paper airplane button. We got lucky and were here when they noon news was on so Michael got to be on the weather. It was really cute! 

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I lost a diamond in my ring at the end of May and so my set was in the shop for about a month getting repaired and cleaned. It is so nice having it back and all shiny! 

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We've been taking the boat out about once a week and it has been so much fun. It is nice just running out there quick after work and usually the water is so nice. Instant vacation! 

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I took the kids to Union park for an adventure and all three had a good time. It was a little cooler day so Michael was too cool in the water but the girls had a blast. It is maybe one of those activities that is too babyish for a 7 year old but just perfect for 2 year olds. 

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We ate our lunch in the sun to dry off so we didn't have wet bottoms on the horses and the lady working actually told us thank you and she noticed us drying off before we rode. I thought that was such a nice compliment! The girls loved the carousel and we rode twice. 

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We also made a trip downtown to the farmer's market. It just so happened that the girls were up super early on a Saturday so I said, "let's go!". It was nice to be there while it was still cool and less crowded. 

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It is such a fun street fair atmosphere but we only lasted about 90 minutes before everyone started getting cranky (mostly Scott). 

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Out for ice cream! 

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Michael has been so funny this summer as he will sometimes just fall asleep while playing in his room. Sometimes I don't even think he realizes he fell asleep! It is a good reminder to me that he is still a little boy who is playing hard in the summertime. 
    

 I had a super busy stretch of performing from the end of June until mid-July where I had some extra rehearsals for the Iowa Chamber Artists and also the Boone Big Band. The Chamber Artists was a highlight of the summer for me as it was a challenge for me to play with such an accomplished group of musicians. It definitely made me better as a player and I was happy to contribute to the group. Some great music was made and just listening to the pieces I didn't play on at the concert was fabulous. A highlight of the summer for sure. 

The Boone Big Band played the Wednesday before the 4th for a really long concert that was exhausting. Whew! After that we had extra rehearsals and a 4th of July concert and then a festival for muni band so it was like a stretch of 14 days with 11 band things. It was busy but I'm glad I have a personal outlet for things that still make me Rose and not Mom or Mrs. Kundel. And thankful of course for my supportive family for functioning in my nights away. 

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Michael and I took a very fun field trip to PetSmart and got harry some new gear for his cage. Fun seeing all the stuff! 

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A big item on our summer bucket list was one I wasn't sure we'd be able to pull off: camping in the backyard. But sure enough, Scott upped his game and got everything ready for a really special night. It was a perfect evening and really gorgeous outside. We put the girls to bed early and then made a fire, roasted marshmallows, caught fireflies, and told ghost stories. Hopefully it will be as good of a memory for Michael as it was for me. Really special! 

That is what we have been up to the 1st half of July- hopefully I'll be back before the month is over. Time is moving too quickly and before we know it we'll be back in the school mode crunch. I'm definitely enjoying my vacation from it all! 
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