Friday, August 27, 2010

Summer Summary (Sorry. No Pictures)

It has been a very hectic lately.  I will get some picture posts on next week, but had too much to say to wait until then.

The karate kid and I have passed another level.  He is now a purple belt and I am a green belt.  Yes, he is still one belt ahead of me.

Matt has learned to ride his bike without training wheels.  A few scrapes along the way but we made it.  His goal is to ride good enough to tackle a nearby rails and trails path.

The two smaller Ms played their first round of  "real" golf yesterday. There is a wonderful Par 3 course near us and the short fairways are wonderful for the entire family's skill levels.  Both boys did much better than expected and will be getting golf related items under the tree this year.  Shhh, don't tell them.

In three days, for the first time, both boys will be in school all day.  The older of the little Ms is looking forward to the routine school brings and seeing all his friends again.  The youngest M couldn't care less about school.  He just wants to pack his lunch and ride the bus!

Speaking of the youngest, he turned 6 on Monday.  I am now the mother of an 8 year old and a 6 year old.  Time flies when you are not looking!

In short, we have survivied a busy summer of baseball (t-ball, coach pitch, the minor league and the majors), Vacation Bible School, karate, Idlewild, vacation and back to school shopping. Each of these will hopefully get their own posts next week.  I'll have more time to type and find pictures when the guys are in class.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Happy 6th Birthday Matt

My youngest is turning six today.  Next week he goes to kindergarten.  When did he go from infant to toddler to student?  Okay, anyway.  Here is the cake I made for him.  The players are wonderful little collectible figures called "Gogo's Crazy Bones". Both my boys love them.  There are tons of games you can play with them and they store easily because of their size.

Matt wanted a baseball field with dugouts so his Gogos could play a game.  Everything but the scoreboard is edible.  The dugouts are made from fondant. And yes, there are players in the dugouts :) cause that's what my boy wanted.

Happy Birthday Matthew!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Birthday Cake for Two

The three M's and I are part of a wonderful small group.  Our group was put together by our church.  There are five families involved.  Ten adults and eight children - all under the age of 9.

Just wanted to give you the basics.

Anyway, the five year old boys had their birthdays recently on the same weekend.  One mom asked me if I would make a cake for them so we could celebrate as a group.  No problem I said.  What do you want on the cake.  Both boys love Toy Story.  One liked Woody the Cowboy best and the other liked Buzz Lightyear best.

Again no problem I said.  I'll put both of them on the cake.  I'll deliver it to the party the day before our meeting.  Piece of cake, right?

Well, Midway through the decorating process I realized, there are a LOT of different colors on Buzz and Woody.  Also, Woody is wearing a plaid shirt and a cow-spotted vest! I had already started, so I might as well finish.

The birthday boys and the rest of the gang loved the cake.  It didn't turn out to bad if I do say so myself.

If anybody needs a birthday cake, just let me know.  I even do plaid shirts!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Vacation Wrap Up

Okay. This will be the last vacation post of this year.  With all the boating, swimming, fishing, and other water activities, we thought we would throw in a couple non-water outings to round out the week.

Tuesday (the only slightly rainy time of the week) We went to Lincoln Caverns.

It was amazing!  It is hard to believe something so beautiful is right under our feet and we might not have ever found it if someone in history hadn't been looking for a place to get a few moments alone or somewhere to get out of the weather.

We were guided underground along a lit path between giant columns of amazing minerals.


 Some of the passageways were a little narrow.

Both of the little M's were fascinated by the formations and the colors.

After walking around underground for about an hour the boys got to pan for some gems.

Both got a few big nuggets of some fun minerals. It was a really fun day!

Thursday (our last night at camp) we left the campground for the "city".  Having read this blog before, you know we are a ball family.  So how could we go an entire week without some sort of ball experience?  We didn't, have no fear.  We went to watch the Pittsburgh Pirates' Farm team, the Altoona Curve, play a home game.  

Just a little trivia here so you will understand some later information in the post:  Altoona Curve refers to the railroad.  There is a sharp curve in the track near Altoona called the horseshoe.  The ball team, giving a nod to local surroundings adopted the name and the railroad theme.

The Curve has three mascots:
This is Steamer.  As in steam engine.

This is Al Toona 
(get it? Altoona Curve, Al Toona, he's a fish!   Is this thing on? Anybody out there?)


And last but not least is Diesel Dawg.  

Diesel and Steamer roamed the stands during the game throwing/shooting prizes to the fans between innings and just doing the general mascot stuff.  And where was Al during the game?  He stayed in the green wall of the outfield.  He only made an appearance when the Curve scored a run.  Unfortunately, we didn't see him much during the game.

Our seats were right down front with lots of leg room.  But the guys stood for most of the game because we were the only people in the entire section.  My wonderful hubby even caught a foul ball right off the bat!  It was a very fun night (even if our team didn't win the game).

Monday, August 2, 2010

Vacation Continued

Did I mention we usually go to the beach for vacation?  We decided this year we needed a change of pace, but tent camping for an entire week for our vacation was overruled.  Living for a whole week without electricity, running water, or a real roof over one's head does not qualify in my book as a vacation, a challenge, a nice thing for a three-day weekend, yes; a vacation - no.

So there was a compromise, we went fancy camping.  We rented a cabin with running water, a window air conditioner, electricity and a fire pit out front.
I was standing against the back wall of the cabin to take this picture.  
Spacious - no; fun - yes.

For the entire week, we were able to leave the boat "parked" in the water.  We anchored it close to shore and then the big M would wade out to get it and pick me and the small M's up at the dock.  The M's and I drove over to the dock, by the way.

While swimming was a big activity all week, we also did a little fishing.
Fisherman A (in the red vest) was not as patient as fisherman B (in the black and blue vest). Fisherman A did not catch anything in the five minutes his hook was in the water.

Fisherman B's perseverance paid off. A blue gill was hooked and released.
I must say my patience paid off as well.
A very small bass hung from my line.  No this is not the bait, it is the fish.

Fisherman A decided that he should try again, but using a different method.
He tried to bait the fish to swim right into his net.  He didn't have much success there either.
Once the fishing was complete and a cooling swim was finished, we headed back towards the cabin.  While we were in a no wake zone (which means we had to go very slow) the boys got to ride in front.

This was actually a competition to see who could be the most "in front" without falling off the boat.

Once we got back to land, we decided hot dogs over the fire was on the menu.  So we got set up and got to cookin'.
 We don't have any other pictures of this meal.  I think the photographers got hungry or we had too much "help" with the fire.  The hot dogs were good and the s'mores even better.