Sunday, January 31, 2016

Birthday Fun

It is so hard to believer that I am 63 years old.
My dad died when he was just 62, I thought he was pretty old at that time, but all of a sudden, 63 seems pretty young.
I started my celebrating at school on Friday.
I had parties with both of my classes.

On Friday afternoon Alissa arrived from Illinois and Courtney and family arrived from Oshkosh so the party began with a fun dinner at the sports bar in Johnson Creek.
The food was yummy, the beer was going down easily and the conversation was fun.
Mallory also joined us which made it perfect.
Paul and John took the little girls home so we could enjoy a night out on the town.
We went to Firecracker and then to Aaron's for a few.  We were entertained there by a man doing card tricks.
It was a great way to start my birthday weekend.

Since Soli andTiz always want to cook and bake when they are here, I decided to have a cooking contest for them on Saturday.
Alissa helped Chef Tizita and Courtney helped Chef Soliana while Gigi, Grandpa, and Paul served as our judges.
The girls prepared a fruit salad, a wrap, and a dessert.
They had so much fun and their creations were very, very good according to the judges.
I chose the ingredients that they had to use so everything was edible and went together well.
I will definitely be doing this again for them
Here are some photos

After our wonderful lunch created by our two chefs, John and I took the girls over to Silver creek for some skating.
Paul went skiing with a friend and Courtney, Lissa, and Mal went out for a few beers.
All of us had a great time.
The weather was so beautiful, in the high 40's so being outside was nice.
When we got home, the girls made a little snowman.

 We opened the goody box and then enjoyed Chinese take out for dinner.
After dinner I was able to enjoy two cakes made by Tizita.
Perfect way to end the birthday.

We spent the night in the basement with a roaring fire watching TV and enjoying good conversation.
Today (Sunday) we all went to church to hear Koine, a fantastic rock band that plays at different WELS churches.  It was a wonderful service for my birthday!
Alissa left for home while the rest of us played some games before the Van Aukens left for home.  It was a great, fun weekend.
I could not have asked for a better birthday celebration.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Hiking, Singing, and other Tidbits

Tim Budreau, one of my favorite dads has volunteered to make an igloo for our classroom.
We are in the process of collecting hundreds of milk jugs.
Tim came in on Thursday and started to construct it.
The kids loved watching him put it together.
We still need more milk jugs to complete our igloo.
I know the kids will love it once it is finished.

On Saturday John and I had hoped to snowshoe at Aztalan, but when we got there we realized there just was not enough snow to do that, so we hiked around there instead and then headed over to 
Cambridge to hike the 4 mile  RockCam trail. 
It was a beautiful winter day, but John and I have not done much physical activity for some time.
Not sure why, we just have been lazy, so those 4 miles felt like 50 to our out of shape bodies.
We made it back and then got ready to meet Pam Wilke's new man, Tony.
We picked them up and headed over to Blue Moon pizza and then ended the night at the Firecracker.
Tony is a very nice guy and we all enjoyed our evening very much.
Look forward to more time with both of them.

Today my kids sang in church for Education Sunday.
They did a great job.
We had registration after the service.
I picked up a few new families, so that was nice.
After that, John and I took a very short walk, now it is time to relax and get ready for the week ahead.

Monday, January 18, 2016

A weekend Recap

It's Monday.
I have a scheduled day off today with a short meeting this morning.
It is minus 25 here today, very, very cold.
My meeting was short and sweet, I am home enjoying my day off.
I have baked a batch of chocolate chip cookies, have a meatloaf and twice baked potatoes in the oven.
It's been a productive day.

We took a road trip to Alissa and Nathan's on Saturday to celebrate John and Alissa's birthday.
Paul was not able to join us, so Courtney and the girls were able to ride with us.
It was a fun road trip.
We got to Bloomington where there is no snow and just before we got out of the car, Soli said, "It is summer here!"  How I wish, but as soon as she felt the temps, she decided it was indeed winter down there, too.
We had a fun afternoon playing legos and watching TV.
Uncle Cheddah took the girls to Toys R Us to pick out a toy.
Alissa came home with a large Power Ranger sword while Tiz chose a clock necklace and a watch.
The three of them had a great time together.
We had birthday cakes, the girls had decorated John's and my mom had made Alissa an angel food cake which was her request.
After cake Alissa opened the goody box and went 10 for 10.
After the goody box opening, we went to a Mexican restaurant for dinner.
It was great food and margaritas.
John and I brought the girls home while Courtney, Alissa and Nathan had a few more drinks at  Margarita Island.
We had to be home by 7:15 for the Packer/Arizona playoff game.
We knew it was going to be a hard battle and it was, but unfortunately it went the other way and the Packers lost in a very exciting overtime.
Even thought they lost, we could not complain about their playing.
Just wait till next year!
On Sunday we had lunch with Alissa and Nathan and then headed home.  I sat in the backseat on the way home so I could enjoy both girls.
It was a good weekend all around.
Here are a few photos:


Monday, January 11, 2016

Remembering Sweet Natnael

It was four years ago this week, January 14, to be exact, that Courtney called with the sad news that our grandsom, Natnael would not be coming home as we had all planned.
He died in the care center and was now home with his Heavenly Father.
Courtney and Paul had just returned from Ethiopia where they had met, played with, and loved on their son, Natnael.

I remember that phone call as if it were yesterday.
It will forever be ingrained in my mind.
What do you say to a daughter who has just called with that devastating news especially knowing how long Courtney and Paul had waited and prayed for their son.
John and I had never met him, but that didn't matter, we had loved him from the first day we saw his adoption photo six months before this.
He was already a part of our lives.
Then, all of a sudden, he was gone along with all the dreams we had for him.
We look forward to the day when we will see Natnael again.
He will never be forgotten.
He is forever, our little grandson.

In other news, the Packers did indeed win yesterday so now we wait until Saturday when they meet the Arizona Cardinals.
Go Pack Go!

Sunday, January 10, 2016

A Little of This and a Little of That

I went back to Preschool this week.  It is always difficult to return after a break, but we had a fantastic week.
The kids were so ready to be back and it seemed like both classes had grown up over the break.
They seemed smarter, better behaved, and bigger.
It was good to be back.
We had our annual indoor snowball fight in the gym.
It is always a fun activity and this year was no differrent.
I think the best part for them is that they get to throw the paper snowballs at the teacher!

We also celebrated John's 61st birthday on January 4.
We had a yummy beef roast for dinner followed by cheesecake and the goody box opening.
He went 10 for 10.
It was also Alissa's birthday on January 7.
Hard to believe that my baby is 36.
Where did the time go? 
 Here's my baby, Alissa, on her second birthday.
And, here's John and his baby girl.

It is Sunday morning, we will wait patiently for the Packer/Redskin play off game later today.
There is very little hope for a victory, but we will wait for a miracle.
Yesterday, John and I had a nice laid back day which included a nice walk on Tivoli Island.
Now on to church.
Go Pack Go!
We also watched some lifetime movies and drank some door county wine.
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