Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Say Yes! to Michigan

We've been going here for years, and I don't think we'll ever tire of it. This time, we brought the Peseks with, to show them one of our most favorite spots on earth~
We left Saturday right after the boys' triathlon, and got up late that night. The Peseks found us a cabin for night, and Jacqueline and I were up before the sun to get in line for a camping site. I've always said Michigan is my favorite state, and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is why. People (especially native Michiganders) would look at me like I was crazy. I finally feel vindicated with this report from Good Morning America, naming Sleeping Bear Dunes the "Most Beautiful Place in America". The drawback is it will now become more crowded :( After setting up camp and settling in on Sunday, Monday we canoed down the Platte River~
Mary and her buddy, Aaron, share a ride~
No "bleaches" (leeches) this time~

At the mouth of Loon Lake, we came across this awesome sand castle someone had built on a sandbar~

On Tuesday we climbed the dunes for a bit, while our friends explored on their own~
Handsome at 8~
I am always amazed at the never-ending energy my kids have~
Good fathers make good sons~

She keeps going~
And going~
And going~
I love this little girl~
We spotted this guy our last night~
While we packed up Wednesday morning, Mary kept herself busy (applying make-up to her knees) ~
We all had a wonderful time - and can't wait to go again next year!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Swim, Bike, Run

They did it again! We had perfect weather for the Chicago Triathlon today.

Not as nervous as last year, just a little healthy adrenalin~
Ready to rock and roll~

This is #4 for Charlie and he still smiles through it~

A respectable finish of 43:27 (200 meter swim, 8k bike, 2k run) ~

The Bones~

Nice finish of 24:09 (2.5 minutes faster than last year) ~
Scott and I are really proud of these two~

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Demolition Derby

When I was a kid, my sister and I loved going to the Demolition Derby in Sycamore with my dad. I was delighted, then, when he called to ask if we all wanted to go for my birthday! We had some delicious fried chicken at White Fence Farm, first, before heading over to the Route 66 Speedway in Joliet. It was every bit as fun as I remembered, and of course the kids loved it, too~
I wish we had thought to bring ear plugs for the kids, but nobody seemed to mind the noise~
Smash 'em up cars - great for kids of all ages~
It's a little embarrassing (and I started to fret with middle-class guilt about the money spent on gasoline just for entertainment when there are people in the world without any water to drink), but I love it~

Thanks, Dad - it was a great time :)

Nap Time

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Happy Birthday to Me

My kids made me a birthday cake. I love the sprinkles~

Secret Stuff

I watched way too many government coverup/espionage movies in the 80's, so when I saw these giant 'things' being transported as we left the pool today, my first thought was "Those are missiles, and the Russians are coming!" I think they're actually the blades for wind-turbines, but the other is more exciting. We were mesmerized~

Saturday, August 13, 2011

White Sox vs. Royals

We were able to catch White Sox game tonight. The boys will never turn down a baseball game, even if it's cold and probably going to rain~
The White Sox have a really nice area that is only for families with children. No alcohol allowed and lots of games to try out (video, athletic, etc...) ~
Waiting out the (first) rain delay~
Just inside the "Fundamentals" ~
This turned into a much later night than we had anticipated, but Mary's still smiling~
And getting a little loopy~

There was a season ticket holder in front of us who really had a lot to drink. He was leaning over the balcony, shouting all by himself, so loud that his voice was getting hoarse, in super-slow time, "Let's. Go. White. Sox". When his neighbor suggested he not lean so far over, he replied, "I'm not stupid, Jim, just crazy." Sam was cracking up (along with the other kids in the area) at his antics~
During the 42 minute rain delay before the start of the eighth, Sam decided to bust a move~

Paul Konerko hit a two-run homer and Tyler Flowers added his first home run in the majors for a White Sox win, 5-4. It was a fun night :)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Lakeview Nature Center

I've said it before, and I'll say it again - we have so many hidden gems here in the western suburbs. So many that we can't get to all of them. Today, though, we visited Lakeview Nature Center in Oakbrook Terrace. The boys brought their fishing poles~
What a perfect day~
Nice catch~
Mary's caught one, too~