Monday, July 30, 2007

Can I Have Your Attention, Please?

Yesterday was Skyler's birthday, so we all headed over to Splashdown for a day of fun in the sun. Upon entering the park, I myself felt a magentic force pulling me straight to the lazy river. First, however I let Bret go off and hit the big water slide with everyone else while I stayed behind to watch Ryan play in the big water tree house area - but not before complaining about how many parents send their little kids off to play and go off and find a chair to sunbathe with their eyes closed or read a book.

So I've been sitting in a chair where I have a good view of the whole structure and can watch him play when it's been about 5 minutes and I've lost site of him. The treehouse is huge and it's really hard to find your kids in there because they're all over the place.

A life guard comes onto the intercom and says, "Can I have your attention, please?"


"We have a lost little boy here at the life guard station."

Aww, poor kid. Really. Why can't parents keep an eye on their kids!?

"He's 6 years old."

Nope, not mine.

"His name is Ryan."

Nooooooo, it can't be. Ryan's a pretty common name, isn't it?

"He's looking for his mom, Lynda."


I turn my head and look over across the water park beyond the big pool and see my son sitting in the lifeguard's chair, crying his eyes out. There's kharma for you.

Thankfully he still had a good time and wasn't too traumatized.

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Bed Hog

No one gets any sleep when the bed hog has a bad dream and brings every pillow in the house with him.

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Saturday, July 28, 2007

Happy 1st Birthday Chloe!

Today is Chloe's very first birthday. Her Mom and Dad had all of their family and friends over to help celebrate. Chloe was as cute as ever.

The kids all had fun jumping from pool to pool. Can you believe how big Cecelia has gotten this summer?

Ryan had fun on the slip n slide... did Cat and Kelly. Can't blame them though as it ended up being pretty hot out today.

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Thursday, July 26, 2007


Just when you think you've seen all of his getups, he pulls out one more that makes you turn your head and cover up your impending laughter.

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For the past few months, Bret and I have been discussing the need for a new Laptop computer. Okay, it's been more like I've been begging and pleading and Bret's been trying to keep the check book closed, but still I was afraid that the older second hand laptop was on it's way to lappy heaven and I'd lose all of the pictures from this summer that were on it when it did.

We finally found a Gateway that we could both agree on at Best Buy, but it was out of stock in the store. They did have it available online last night, but then I nearly broke down and cried when I went to order it this morning and they were all sold out!

I did manage to find a Toshiba that had the same specs and ran out as soon as I could fit it into my busy 3 kid day to buy it. As soon as I got home and later got Chloe down for her afternoon nap, I sat down to try and figure the thing out. That's when everything went downhill fast and I nearly lost my mind.

We already had the other computers set up on a wireless network so I figured (in my computer genius mind) that all I had to do was log onto the network and poof, it'd be all ready to go. Not so much. I spent the next 2 and a half hours trying to set up the network. I was ready to give up and throw the thing back at the salesman when my mom called and asked if I was sure I had the right password to the network. Like I'm that dumb. Yeah, I had the password all wrong for over 2 hours. I put in the password that she insisted was correct and low and behold my new toy sprung to life. Figures. (Have I told you how thankful I am yet, Mom?)

So I got to work and started to prepare to transfer all of the pictures from the old laptop over the network when all of a sudden the thing died. It made a sad noise, shut itself off and died. Did I mention it DIED? (Taking a deep breath...) I lost all of my pictures from July. My cute son playing T-Ball for the first time ever, my growing up too fast daughter's softball game pictures, my temporary loss of insanity over at the trampoline pictures, and many more. It makes me sick to my stomach. Thankfully I have this blog. I've posted my favorites here and can at least copy those onto the new laptop.

It's ironic and sad, isn't it? We replaced the old laptop because we were afraid something like this would happen and just as I'm trying to transfer everything to the new one, I lose it all forever.

I do love my new computer though. This thing is sweet! Did you know that you can post to your blog with your pictures easily with the push of one button through Picassa? It's great!

But let's go over my user error mistakes. A half hour of trying to figure out how to connect the internet and finally realized that there was a wi-fi switch on the front of the computer. Next, another two hours of frustration because I had the wrong password for the network. And then finally realizing that the printer wasn't working because the wire wasn't plugged in. Yep. Aha.

Monday, July 23, 2007

"It's Fun To Stay At The YMCA!"

So, in an effort to motivate myself into getting back into the gym (yeah, I know!), I froze my membership at Gold's Gym and joined the YMCA, formally known as the Willow Knolls Country Club. I've been eyeing that olympic size pool for quite some time now and really want to get back into swimming laps again. I was on the swim team in high school and there's nothing like a good long distance swim. (At my age now it's probably going to be more like a long distance I've been really tired of how crowded Gold's has been lately and can't get my kids to go there anymore. For less than $15 bucks a month difference from what I was paying for Gold's, the kids can be added on to my membership and we have unlimited use of the huge outdoor pool. Plus the Y has so much more available for kids.

Anyway, I dragged Teri and her kids out of bed this morning and gave them a tour of the place and then waited while they signed up. (Got to bring someone else in on the torture, you know.) The plan was to let the kids play in the game area while we did the water aerobics class, then grab them and eat lunch and swim for a little while. Only the schedule on the internet was wrong and the class is only on Tuesday's and Thursday's. So instead, I talked Teri into swimming laps. Ha. (Someone help if Scott is reading this since he may have just passed out.)

While waiting for the lifeguards to set up the lane lines, I walked over to a couple of older ladies that were waiting to get in as well to see if they had lane line preferences. Let me tell you, they were quite territorial! They each stated what lane they were going to use and didn't seem too welcoming. And did I mention yet that it's an olympic size pool? I highly doubt we were going to get in their way. And that olympic size pool? Gulp. It's a really long distance. I know Teri was already getting nervous about it, but I was still pretty determined. So I go to put on my goggles and they broke. A sign, you ask? Most definately since at that moment we decided to high tail it out of there. But don't you worry! Tomorrow I'm going back with my cute little flippers and I'm going to leave those old ladies behind in my wake!

Finding Your Inner Child

To find your inner child, all one needs is a trampoline, fellow wanna be gymnasts and a lack of dignity.
Bret and Scott doing their warm up.

Bret scores a 9.8 for lift. Deductions taken for belly and shirt defying gravity.

A perfect 10, is it not? It takes a great deal of skill and strength to launch someone that high off of the trampoline.

This may have been an attempt at a backflip. 5.0 for effort.

1.0 for the total wipeout. I nailed Teri.

9.9 for the "Butt Bomb". Could have been a perfect 10 with no hands.

Whew. That was fun. Embarassing, but fun.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Glen Oak Zoo

Here's some of the pictures Bret took of the kids at the zoo today. You'll find the rest over at Flickr.
The kids played at the huge playground outside of the zoo for quite some time before heading inside.

" Shh, don't tell the girls where we are!"


Don't worry, honey. Maybe next year you'll reach the tips of the wings.

The kiddos.

Am I sensing a "moon" theme going on here?


(Sings) "Ashley, the camel has 5 humps..."

The day got even better. Coming up tomorrow will be pictures of myself and Teri reliving our youth on the neighbor's trampoline. I know, I almost can't believe it myself!

Moonlighting At The Zoo

This is what you get when you send Bret and Scott to the zoo with the kids and a camera so you can clean the house in peace...

I'll post the rest of the pictures later tonight. I'm heading over to Teri's to join everyone there right now.

Saturday, July 21, 2007


There didn't seem to be anything in the paper about the class Ashley was taking. Oh well.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

As Promised

Ryan and his friend at Ashley's softball tournament game in Farmington, IL last Monday.

Ashley's ready over at 3rd base.

Bring it on.

Ashley's first at bat.

And she hits a single!

Anyone need a tanning salon? Get it? Farmington, IL?

Tuesday's games were cancelled due to two huge thunderstorms that came through the Peoria area early in the morning and then more in the evening. At 7:15am the sky was clear and looked like it could be a beautiful day ahead. These pictures were taken at 7:30am. The second storm came in so fast that it instantly went from daytime to looking like nighttime. You can see the edge of the cloud line and a bit of sunny sky that the storm hadn't reached yet. It was really something to see.

Okay, that's it for my weather recap.

Possibly up next: Ashley may appear in the local newspaper tomorrow. At her Junior Chef class this morning, there was a photo journalist there. (Fingers crossed!)

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


4 kids + 3 days = 1 very tired and exhausted Lynda.
I've got pictures from Monday night's softball game on my camera and will post them as soon as I can find the time and energy to do it.

Monday, July 16, 2007

New Neighbors

Well, since we had to lose Emily and Jon as neighbors, I've decided that it's okay to be excited about our new neighbors that are moving in next month. Ashley is going to flip when I tell her about it. Her friend Brianna from school, volleyball and softball is moving in behind us. We've been here for almost 4 years now and we're finally getting a girl the same age as Ashley. Sure, she has quite a few friends here, but another girl her age is just what we've been hoping for. Yipee!

Wonder if they know that their new house is the official neighborhood party spot...LoL.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Lego Overload

Yesterday I spent 12 hours rebuilding my son's legos - and I still have more to go today. If he ever takes them apart again, I'll wring his little neck. After hours of lego building, we never did make it over to see the balloons, however I did take a break while we watched the fireworks from the driveway again.

So now I'm off to build some more and then hopefully to get my house cleaned...

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Balloons Stayed On The Prairie

Well, our "balloon party" last night ended up being just a "hang out with the neighbors in the backyard and run around to the front of the house every now and then to look for the balloons" party. This weekend is Balloons on the Prarie, where hot air balloons are launched and rides can be purchased not far from our neighborhood.

For some reason, the balloons never left the field yesterday. What a bummer. You could see a couple of them from our front yard and we did get to see a pretty awesome fireworks show from our driveway, so that was something at least. The party was a lot of fun, nothing out of control, just a bunch of friends having some drinks and their kids all playing together.

Tonight, we've decided we're going to head out there in person so the kids can see it all up close. Maybe if the lines aren't too long, we'll go up for a ride and experience it for ourselves. That'll be when they actually leave the field, though - right when we pay for our car load to get in- LoL. Might as well stay there for the fireworks, too.


Friday, July 13, 2007

What Have I Done?

Tonight, across from our neighborhood, Peoria's Balloons On The Prairie will be launching lots of hot air balloons with a fireworks display at dusk. It all started with inviting Teri and her family over to barbeque and watch the balloons fly over our neighborhood and maybe a good view of the fireworks. Suddenly, I'm cooking and baking away and many, many, many of the neighbors are on their way to join us. Should be a fun time, but man I hope we have enough food!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

T-Ball Finale

Tonight was Ryan's last T-Ball game of the season. He really enjoyed playing and made a big improvement over the summer.
Ryan cranks one out.

Ryan practices his swing.

Ryan gets his trophy! He was so proud.

The team and their coaches pose for one last picture.

And then it was off to celebrate the season with ice cream at Culvers.

Ashley, Brooke, Emma & Ryan

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Time For A Change

I finally figured out how to work blogger's custom template and changed it all up. I love the picture of Ryan at the top chilling out under the stream of water at the pool, but the poor kid really needs to start eating more. I'm waiting for someone to look at the picture and tell me to give the poor kid some food. He eats all day long, but keeps growing at such a fast rate that it doesn't have time to stick to him. If only we all had that problem!

The family reunion on Sunday was a blast! The weather was extremely HOT and we swam in the pool all day. The kids and I got a lot of sun and are much darker than we were before we left. And then there was a certain other person who didn't listen when I told her she better get some sunscreen on and you can bet she's paying for it now! How's that sunburn feeling, Mom? (Ha!)

On Monday, the plan was to head home to Peoria around lunchtime, but Ashley did us a huge favor and left her swimsuit there, so we had to head back over to Indiana and swim for a couple more hours with our cousins. Darn. Now they'll probably double check our bags for us before we leave next year. LoL. We left Chicago around 4pm and made it back to Peoria at 6:30pm, just 15 minutes before Ashley had to leave for her softball game. Whew!

Her team was playing a great game when it was called due to some wicked lightning and thunder. The score was 8 to 1 so I guess that's a win for us.

Well, I guess I should go make use of the time while both babies are sleeping and get this house back in order. Maybe my mom will email me some of the pictures from the reunion for me to post later.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Taking Off

We're off to my hometown of Midlothian, IL for the weekend. Tomorrow is the family reunion in Indiana. Wonder if Ryan will be able to wait until we get there this time....

Friday, July 06, 2007

It's All Too Real Now

Em and her family move next week. I've been doing okay with it so far, trying not to think about it too much, until this morning when she brought over all of my stuff that's accumulated over there over the past 3 years. I never knew Rubbermaid container lids, a plastic lid to a baking pan and an old cassette tape with God knows what taped on it (from prehistoric before DVR ages) could bring me to tears. It's all too real. Next week, they'll be moving on to the Quad Cities for 18 months for Jon's new position at State Farm. I really do wish them the best, but we're going to miss them so much!

It's going to be very strange without them right in our backyard. What's Bret going to do without being able to shovel a path from our deck to theirs this winter? Maybe whoever buys the house won't mind if we still make a path for the kids from our yard to the cul-de-sac the next time we get 12 inches of snow?

What will Ryan and his 4-wheeler do without Reece and his gator?

Who's going to host the impromptu backyard neighborhood parties? Um, us I guess.

We've had some good times over the past three years. Hope they don't get sick of us visiting!

Sunday, July 01, 2007

What's Wrong With Kids These Days?

I'll tell you what's wrong with them. Lack of respect. Here's the quote of the day:

I'm cleaning my house today, because it's Sunday and everyone knows that I'm kind of a freak about cleaning my house from top to bottom once a week, with my ipod on and Fergie's new song Glamorous is blaring from inside the ear buds and out of my mouth when my son comes up to me with his hands over his ears and says, "Mom, can you turn it down!" I'm not that bad!

Okay, so I've got two quotes for you today. Friday night as I'm bringing Ryan over to spend the night at Brooke's house, I make a quick stop at where Ashley's spending the night because she forgot her pillow, when Ryan asks why were not going in the direction on Brooke's house. I tell him that I have to drop off Ashley's pillow and that it'll just take a minute and then we'll be on our way. He says, "Aww, your minutes take to long!"

It's a wonder how I've managed to stay sane all this time.