Saturday, July 29, 2017

PLCBC 2017

Wow.  Camp.  Wow.  This past week has been intense, amazing, awesome, and full of growth.  It was emotional and challenging.  It was filled with family time and fun.  Our speaker this year was Matt Ness.  He spoke straight to the heart and we left changed people.  I'm still filled with wonder at what's next, and how do I bring this change home, and keep growing, and I just keep contemplating what I learned.  The rest of the week was also really fun!  The kids are finally old enough that we were on the go all week.
Ya know the card game spoons?  We played a giant version, thus the helmet.  We had to run to the center and dive to get an inter-tube.  Super fun.  We came in 3rd.


Jake's first time down the zip line!  He said it was his favorite part of the week!

Joel did the Flying Squirrel - and was scared.

Then Ave did the Flying Squirrel too!

The boys got to play some pick up ball.

Ave painted her name on the wall in Arts and Crafts and spent a lot of time there!

She climbed the indoor wall.

We tried another year at the Portager...and lost again.  That darn pop corn, final event!

We spent an evening watching the sunset on Lake Michigan and playing on the dunes with friends.

And were blessed with more sunsets at camp.  If you don't already know, sunsets are my FAVORITE!

Joel tried Crate Stacking.

Lots of beach time.  I even read an entire book!!

This crazy family includes the loves of my life!

Friday, July 21, 2017

Double Digits!

Sometimes it's a little overwhelming to think that I'm old enough to have a child in double digits...and then I remember I'm old.  Jake's 10th birthday was a very fun celebration!  It was his year for a party and he had things planned.  Unfortunately only 2 friends were able to join us, but he still had a great night!  They started off at Rebounderz playing and jumping and getting totally worn out.  Then it was home for pizza, presents, a water balloon fight, brownies (not cake for this kid!) a movie, and finally they all feel asleep.


Here he's super excited to have received a watch that counts your steps.  He's been asking for one of these since Christmas!


Somehow I got in on the action.  And then they all ganged up on me...


Jake's favorite things right now - all things sports!  He loves to watch sports and read the ticker scrolling at the bottom of the screen while watching ESPN.  He loves being with friends!  He's started to enjoy reading - a little.  He likes to be outside, and fishing seems to be a new favorite.  We love this kid to the moon and back!!



Thursday, July 13, 2017

Happy 5th Birthday!

Is it really possible that my baby is 5 years old already?!  This little girl wanted a Moana birthday.  She asked for a doll, dress up clothes, cake.  She loves it all!




We had a fun evening celebrating this little girl.  We went miniature golfing, to Panera for supper, and home for cake, ice cream, and presents.
Avery is such a spunky kiddo.  She loves to wear dresses.  Her favorite color is pink.  Tomato soup and gold fish are her favorite food (although I think bagels are a close second.)  She can't wait for school to start in the fall.  She's a girly girl, 100%!

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

5K Fun?

Think back to the spring of 2006...I make a decision that before we start having kids, I want to get into really good shape and run a 5K.  Jeremy is at the state track meet and I'm home alone.  I decide to go for a run to begin my training and I take our dog Mara with me...she lunged at a dog coming toward us that I didn't see or hear because I had earbuds in, she tripped me, I broke my elbow and sprained my wrist, I had surgery, and spent the next 3 months in therapy trying to twist my wrist.  Yeah, no 5K that summer.  And then in 2007, along came Jake.

Fast forward to tonight.  I finished an actual race.  A real 5K!  After busy season this year, it was so beautiful outside that I decided to start the Couch to 5K (C25K) workout routine.  It took me a little longer than the suggested 8 weeks to train, but I did it.  I did all of the training.  At that point I decided I needed to reward myself by actually running in a real race.  So I searched and found an evening 5K!  I HATE running in the morning, so to find one in the evening is awesome.  Plus it was a huge 5K, which makes it more fun because you're running with a massive group of people and the streets are shut down.  Finally, to cap things off, it was a completely flat course.  Umm, sign me up!  So I did sign up!  And I finished with a time of 31:52.  I'm totally happy with that.  My trainings were mostly around the 33:00 minute mark, so I feel really good about my finish!
I was actually really nervous before the race.  I know that's totally silly.  I had run the distance during my workouts a few times and was confident I could do it, but still, so many people and feeling inadequate...
A little past the halfway mark.  I was feeling really good here.  In a groove! (And yes, someone pushing a stroller was keeping up with me...actually a bunch of them finished ahead of me.)
Post race.  Joel and Avery came to cheer me on and thought I won since I got a medal.

Overall a very fun (did I really say that?!?) night!





Monday, June 26, 2017

The Annen's Attack Chi-Town!

For Memorial Day weekend, we decided it was time for a mini-family vacation.  I've been wanting to go to Chicago for a while now and it's also been a while since we've been away together as a family.  I researched everything, trying to figure out what we should do that is age appropriate and also wouldn't break the bank.  We managed to fit a lot in, completely wear out the kids, walk miles, and have tons of fun!
We took the train from South Bend into downtown.  It take a little extra time, but so much less stress driving and NO PAYING parking rates downtown!


When we got to our hotel, we realized we were right across the street from Harry Carey's!  So of course that was our first dinner stop.
We spent a morning at Shedd's Aquarium

Shopping at LEGOLAND and the American Girl store.

We watched the Tigers lose to the White Sox


We were crazy (and only saw this car, didn't drive it.)

And had fun at the Bean!


Overall, it was a great weekend!  The kids did really well with all of the walking we did.  We took the bus and el everywhere and survived!  I did find myself with a death grip on the kids a few times, but they never complained, so they must have been nervous at times too.  We got to see a lot and it was a beautiful weekend to be outside.  We got around town for sure, but it you ask the kids, their favorite part was still the hotel pool.  Of course!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Phew. It's Been a While. Oh and Happy Birthday!

So, after being gone for almost a year, I decided to come back to the blogging world.  I had been feeling like blogging was a waste of time because no one reads my posts.  And maybe it's true.  I certainly know none of my family read this, which was the original intent in regular posts.  BUT I read them!  They are great memories and I love to look back and feel the rush of emotion that I usually wrote with!  So here goes.  I may not post as often, but just excited to have some memoirs.  This is us!


Joel turned 7 the last week of school!  Wow!  How do I even have a seven year old?  I remember so clearly getting a pedicure and walking all through downtown that afternoon, hoping he would arrive.  I also remember clearly that it was thunder storming that evening when we decided it was time to go to the hospital.  Anyway, since it was a school night this year, we celebrated Joel's birthday on Saturday.  We went out to breakfast, to the zoo, and then came home for presents, cake and ice cream with the Annen cousins.  I think Joel had a fun day!
Here Joel is opening his "big" present.  We bought him a new swing.


His request was a Nemo cake.  Did I do ok??

It was a perfect day for the zoo!  The bears were out, pacing up close.  The Macaw started dancing when Jeremy started talking to him.  The apes were ALL riled up and it was fun/scary to watch.

I'm seven!
Joel's current favorites include:
Mac & Cheese
Blue and Pink
Loves water as long as his fingers don't get wrinkly
Loves to play

Monday, August 15, 2016

Camp - Year 7

One more year of Family Camp III at PLCBC is in the books.  Overall it was a pretty great week!  We had really warm weather and spent every afternoon at the beach.  It was actually so warm that we also spent some mornings and evenings there too.  It was perfect!  Jake got a little more daring and did the indoor climbing wall, making it all the way to the top.  He also tried crate stacking this year and went higher than I've ever made it.  He was all over the place, playing basketball, soccer, gaga ball, and blobbing.  Joel and Avery both rode bikes everywhere, swam until they dropped, loved going to arts and crafts, and of course visited the canteen at every possible moment.    Every year that we go, things get easier with the kids.  This year we even had some sleep-in days!  Gone are the days of getting up at 6:30 and just waiting for breakfast.  Our speaker this year was ok - I was challenged.  Our Portager team came in 3rd.  Overall, it's still my favorite place to be!