Saturday, June 25, 2011

Gran Leaving Tomorrow

Sometimes you wonder where time simply goes. Pat has been here for three weeks and tomorrow she returns home to England. Granddad, or Dave as he is more commonly known, has been missing her company and will be glad to have her home again. We of course will be sad to see her leave again.

She has been great company for the last three weeks and a huge help around the house. The kids will obviously miss their bath time and reading routines as will Daisy her morning walking routine.

As always, thanks for visiting and all your help Pat, we only look forward to your next visit, perhaps in the autumn?  

Shown below are a few select pictures, my favorite is obviously the dress-up picture. It was one I took yesterday after the girls had used her for dress-up. They thought it hilarious to dress their Gran in their dress-up clothes.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Glad Midsommar

Till alla våra svenska vänner, vi önskar er en underbar midsommar! Har en lycklig dag, drycka någonting för mig….Skål !

Raspberry Time Again

Ever since we planted our Raspberry bushes several years ago, June in our house has become synonymous with Raspberries. We literally have more than we can eat, although the kids try their best. Not an issue we are really complaining about. This week the kids picked sufficient for Lynne to even make some jam. We had some this morning on toast and it was delicious, a real intense flavor that you simply don’t get with store bought jams. We all love our raspberries here.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Summertime Water Fun

Now that the dog days of summer are here with us having frequent 90-degree days, it’s time for water fun. Over the last few days we have visited the Loeb Fountain at Purdue, had the sprinklers out in the garden and this evening a new game, sliding into the kiddy pool. They were all in their element.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Fathers Day

Happy Fathers Day to all you Dads out there (and Dads to be too).

I was met this morning with my cards and a present together with the most precious set of hugs and kisses from all around. Had some wonderful homemade cards as usual and a new biking shirt. The cards had a theme this year, I could not figure it out until Anja let me in on it. You will see that they have many hands on the pictures with the two middle fingers folded down. This is the symbol for “I Love You” in Sign Language!! I Love you too…….Anja's card, second from the end is also quite cute. She is standing on stilts to give me a kiss....

We had a relatively active day here today, we went bike riding in the morning, a quite lunch and then a trip to the fountain at Purdue (pictures on that later).

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Lynne in Marseille

Lynne has been away travelling this week so to give it a sports analogy, we’re playing here with one man down. She is at a very small conference in Marseille. It was a short trip so she’ll be back tomorrow. If you read this love; we all miss and Love you, have a safe trip home, we’ll see you tomorrow.

Things have gone very smoothly for the most part. I’m not exactly on my own here, I still have Brooke and Pat helping so all is well. The kids all went off to the zoo with Brooke yesterday, they had a great time. Thanks for taking them Brooke, they have not yet stopped talking about all the animals they saw.

During the week, the kids have also had lots of bonding time with Gran. She is now fully fluent in the bedtime rituals of bath, teeth, jim-jams and books. They love their routines and love their stories and books even more.

We had Randy, Lorraine, Kay and Nancy over for dinner last night. Kay and Nancy are here in town for Danielle’s wedding so we aware keen to catch up with them since we generally only see them once or twice a year. Danielle is Randy and Nancy’s niece who is being married as I type (Good luck to you both). Shown below are few pictures from the discussion above plus a few shots of the kids today. 

Monday, June 13, 2011

Congratulations Clive and Tracey

I have a birthday wish and a note of congratulations. Today Clive, my youngest brother living in Ireland aged one more unit. Happy Birthday Clive, although it’s over for you now, I hope you had a good one!

Now, on to much more exciting news. We have known for a little time but some of you may not yet know. Clive and Tracey are going to have a baby in January. A big congratulations to you both, we're all very excited for you both. I hope you're feeling well Tracey and that your first trimester is not too awful? We’re thinking of you both here in WL and just like my message to Davey and Sam the other day, now is the time to fire up that blog!!! These are old pictures I know. I don't obviously have any recent versions and I do like these two photos!!

Mum's New Bike

The picture below, which I received from Mum the other day, tells a few different stories. Firstly, it clearly shows Mum on her new bike, she’s clearly very proud of it. It looks like a great bike Mum; I hope you enjoy many many miles on it.

Secondly, when Mum was over I gave her a few computer and camera tips, all of which she has clearly mastered since I received this picture via email. Well done Mum this is also great; keep it up.

Finally, this is a picture of Mum fully intentioned on riding a few miles every couple of days to stay healthy. She has recently been trying to eat a little better and get a little exercise. It’s paying off for her too. She is a great example of the idea that you don’t have to ride the Tour de France or run a marathon to stay healthy. A short period of exercise a few days a week and pretty soon you will feel amazing and start to look even better. It has rubbed off on Eddie and Eilish who also recently bought new bikes. Have lots of fun guys!!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Straight Arrow Day Camp

Anja wrapped up her first weeklong camp for the summer last night. All week she has been going to the Straight Arrow Day Camp organized by the local YMCA. She has been coming home each evening totally exhausted after lots activities (swimming, horseback riding, canoeing, fishing, rock climbing, you get the picture). They traditionally finish the week with Family night. This is a picnic event with each of the counselors together with their “Tribe” (day campers) putting on a little skit. Its always very interesting and lots of fun (even more if there were no mosquitoes).

We met Kaisa and Kevin their, Anna was also attending camp, and Randy and Lorraine also joined us for the evening. A big thanks goes out to Randy who provided the picnic.

Pat Settled In

I mentioned in passing last week that Lynne’s Mum, Pat, had arrived. She has now settled into full swing of helping around the house, entertaining the kids, visiting the neighbors, walking Daisy, some cooking and generally keeping us all company. Lynne was actually away this week for work on a three-day trip to Virginia Tech, so Pat was a great help this week. I have not managed to get any pictures of her with the kids yet, terrible I know, however, I did snap one of her helping Lynne in the Garden this morning. She was watching Connor (picture below taken this morning) while Lynne was busy.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Weekend in Madison

Lynne and myself had the most wonderfully relaxing weekend. Even though we drove to Madison, Wisconsin and back in the space of three days (almost 600 miles round trip) we thoroughly enjoyed it. We went there to celebrate Professor George Zografi’s 75th birthday, he is Lynne’s old post-doctoral supervisor and mentor. We met up with many of Lynne’s former colleagues and friends, now my friends too.

The weekend was jammed packed full of events. On Friday evening we kicked off the events off by meeting everybody and visited our favorite pub in Madison, The Great Dane Brew Pub. On Saturday morning Lynne and Sheri visited with Julie, Craig, Henry and Emma to do some catching up. I took the opportunity to run a 5K race together with Sandy, Mehran and Jane who were part of the celebrating party. The race was a Susan G. Komen, Run for the Cure event. I managed a great run (20:46) which I was very pleased with. I had a few guilt free beers that night J

Then after a tour of the Farmers Market around the state capitol, lunch at Buraka, our favorite restaurant in the entire city followed by a few hours sitting on The Terrace at the student union (a well worn Madison tradition), we had the party at George’s house.

Sunday was mostly a relaxing day before the drive home. We had Sheri’s company the entire time; it was so nice to catch up with her to that extent.

Finally of course, our entire weekend was only possible since Randy and Lorraine were willing to watch the kids the entire weekend. Thank you so much, we needed that weekend! As you can imagine, I took many photos. A select few are shown below but many more can be viewed here.