Thursday, October 27, 2011


July 27, 2011 Andrew turned 6. The day started with blueberry muffins for breakfast (with a candle of course) and a few presents. Drew was able to go to work a little later so he could see Andrew on his big day. Then we tried to beat the heat and headed out for some miniature golf. All 3 kids had a blast and the birthday boy even got a hole in one. Next was a trip to Target so Matthew could pick out a present for his big brother. After Target we got a call from dad that he was headed back to the office from a meeting out by us. He stopped and had lunch with us on the way back to work. Andrew picked Penn Station for his birthday lunch. 

After lunch we came home for the younger two to nap and Andrew had some alone time with his new Lego set. For dinner Andrew's choice was Chick Fil A. We lucked out because they had a "parking lot party" that night at Chick Fil A. There was a bounce house, face painter, games, and of course the cow made an appearance. After dinner, we came home and opened a few more presents. I think he had a great day.

Saturday we had a few of his buddies to the movie theater to watch Cars 2. The theater did a great job with the party. Each boy had popcorn, a drink, and fruit snacks during the movie. Then after the movie we went to the party room for cake and presents. It was an easy party for me and Drew and lots of fun for all the boys. 

Matthew had a party for one of his friends after Andrew's party so Drew took him. I came home with Andrew and relieved my mom who was watching Molly. Of course Andrew spent the rest of his evening putting together his new Lego sets and playing the new games he got from his friends. 

Sunday, we had ANOTHER party at my parents house. It was a welcome home from Greece/Family party for Andrew. My mom already had all of their pictures printed and they were amazing. Of course Andrew felt extra special with MANY more presents, Dominos for dinner, and a Star Wars cake. Grandma even had party games; a water balloon toss and potato on a spoon races. It was a great way to end Andrew's birthday WEEK:). 

Monday, October 24, 2011

Good byes, Back to Reality, AND POTTY TRAINING

Sunday (July 24) was our last day with Mimi and Paw Paw. After church we decided to have a low key day after all of our adventures. We wanted the kids to be able to enjoy Mimi and Paw Paw without too many distractions. It was a very relaxing day with lots of playtime. I think it's what everyone needed. I was even able to go grocery shopping ALONE!!

After dinner I surprised Paw Paw and Andrew with a birthday cake. It was perfect because Paw Paw was about to turn 60 and Andrew 6 so I only had to buy 2 candles! After dinner we headed to the pond to show Mimi and Paw Paw the ducklings. A "cold" front moved in that afternoon so we could actually breath while outside on our walk.

Waiting for the slow pokes 

Monday was back to reality. Drew went back to work and Drew's parents headed back to Oklahoma. After being entertained 24/7 for the past week the kids were going crazy. I was ready for a chill day at home and they were like, "what's next?!" So silly me, decided this would be a good time to potty train Matthew. I knew my strong willed child would not be easy but I knew he was ready. He did surprisingly well. The thing he HATED most about being "trained" was when I told him he had to go. BUT he had very few accidents, just a lot of battles with mom. A few days I felt like I may end up in a padded room but he was completely potty trained by mid August. 

Matthew wasn't thrilled about ending his M&M rewards when he was officially potty trained but I was thrilled that it was over and now I only have one in diapers. I was also very proud of the fact that from day 1 he wore underwear to bed and never wet his bed (A sure sign that he was ready!). 

Way to go Matthew!!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Mastodon Park

Saturday we headed to Mastodon State Park. We did not know what to expect so it was an adventure! When we arrived we grabbed a map and followed a hiking trail to the site of historic dig. Unfortunately there wasn't much for the kids to see so they didn't really understand. They did enjoy the hike and all the sticks along the way.

After the hike, we went into the museum , looked around, and watched an educational movie. The kids did extremely well. I don't think anyone was SUPER impressed but it was a good learning experience. PLUS, everyone got their very own mastodon souvenir thanks to Mimi and Paw Paw.
For lunch we headed to one of Mimi and Paw Paw's favorite delis, Jersey Mikes. We were so excited that we had one in STL after they had raved about it. Then after naps it was time for Andrew's annual birthday shopping trip with Mimi and Paw Paw. We headed to Walmart and he picked out a very cool Police Lego Set. Needless to say, he was in heaven.

Mimi and Paw Paw Join Us

Drew's parents arrived Thursday night but met up with us Friday morning for our next adventure. I'm not sure they knew what they were getting themselves into. We were "staycation" pros at this point. We all hopped into the same car and headed to a Tiger Sanctuary in St. Genevieve, MO. The drive went by much faster because Mimi and Paw Paw were with us. Once we arrived we took a tour of the grounds and learned about each tiger. They were not very active and I was worried the kids would consider this trip a FAIL but as we were leaving one of the tigers started pulling around a tractor tire and got in his pool. An interesting fact we learned about tigers is that when they get in water they always leave one paw dry. This tiger did exactly that. Very intriguing!

From there we headed to...the wineries! Our first stop was Crown Valley where we enjoyed a delicious lunch and bottle of wine. Memory from this winery: After Matthew finished off the fruit, the chef let us know they were soaked in wine. Matthew didn't hear this conversation and said, "The taste all over these grapes is VERY good!"

We then went on to another winery, Chaumette. This winery was BEAUTIFUL! It was very French AND there was a wine tasting for $5. Luckily the kids didn't ask me what my favorite even was during our staycation:). Matthew's quote during this outing, "Mom, at 10:00, there is a water tasting."

The trip home was very peaceful and the scenery was nice. Once we arrived home I could tell the kids were done. Drew was wanting to continue the day with dinner at a pub down the street. I knew this could potentially be a disaster...Matthew proved me right. Sorry about the chaotic dinner Mimi and Paw Paw, we learned our lesson! Other than that, it was the perfect day.