Wednesday, August 16, 2017

2017 Blue Jeans Week 32

Summer is officially over here.  School has started.  Last week we had one last get away before the chaos starts :)  We went to St. Louis to explore and also attend our nephew's wedding reception.  It was a really fun time, very busy, and we did a lot.  There is A LOT to do in St. Louis, and so much of it is free!!  A great place to visit!  Take a look at our week. . .
These three things have gone with us on all 3 of our summer mini-vacations this summer.  Girl scout cookie knock-offs.  Love them!  Wouldn't be a proper get away without them!

Got to St. Louis in time for lunch and went to the Nathaniel Reed bakery.  Wow!  It was yummy!  I knew croissants were good, but these were really good!  He is a world renowned pastry chef and it did not disappoint.

Forest Park in St. Louis is huge and is home to many wonderful and free things--like this awesome St. Louis art museum which we enjoyed visiting.

Forest park is also home to the free St. Louis zoo which we enjoyed visiting too!

Our nephew and his new bride. It was nice to see some family while we were there!!

When in St. Louis, you need to visit the Gateway Arch.  Pretty impressive.  Mr J and I don't do well with heights or enclosed spaces (the tram car going up is really small) so just Ben and the girls went up to the top.  Mr J and I enjoyed the downtown while they were up in the arch.

The St. Louis Gateway Arch

Downtown St. Louis has some pretty parks and is fun to explore.

We went to the St. Louis City Museum which was just bizarre--climbing stuff, 9 story slides, like a 9 story McDonald's play place on steroids.  Wow!  the kids loved it.  A very unique place!

When in St. Louis you need to get Ted Drewes frozen custard, a St. Louis tradition since 1929!  So yummy!

Also in the awesome Forest Park is the outdoor Muny theater.  It seats 14,000, and each performance they give away 1,400 free seats!  First come, first served, so we got in line and got in one night and saw Newsies.  It was SO GOOD!!!  The weather was not your typical August weather either--but cool and so nice!  A perfect evening!

Another day and another section of Forest Park (seriously this place is huge with sooo much to do) this is the Jewel Box.  Forest Park was where they had the 1904 Worlds' Fair.

Then near Forest Park is the amazing Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis which we went to see and had a tour of.  Amazing!!!  So beautiful!

We felt like we were in a European Cathedral---so huge and so beautiful!!!  We got there at the end of mass and heard the organ being played.  Wow!  Loved it!

Hope the beginning of your school year goes well!!!  We are not ready for early mornings, but here we come!

Monday, August 7, 2017

2017 Blue Jeans Momma week 31

Ben and Mr J had an amazing adventure this week.  Mr J's boy scout troop went on a 5 day, 55 mile canoe trip.  It was his first experience doing something like that.  Normally the first week of August is triple digits and extremely humid, but the boys had amazingly beautiful weather with highs in the low 80's and low humidity.  Amazing!  They slept along the river on sand bars and had to pack all their water and food in the canoes.  What an adventure!  So glad they could do it together!  The girls and I had a fun week at home and enjoyed the nice weather here too!!  Take a look at our week. . .
I love Costco!  Whenever I get up to the city I try to stop.  It is probably a good thing I live a few hours away from one because if I lived closer I would spend way too much money there!

National Cheesecake day!  We got a cheesecake from Costco to enjoy today!  Yummy!

Tuesday the boys headed off on their canoe trip.  They went on the Kansas River.  These are the boys and their dads and scout leaders.  Adventure here they come!

Some pictures Ben took on the trip.

Each night they would camp on the sand bars in the middle of the river.  Ben said it was so nice--no bugs :)  Looks beautiful to me!

The girls had the job this week of watching our neighbor's dogs.  They enjoyed walking them during the week.

And we enjoyed the cooler weather and walking on the trails.  Such a pretty place!

Thanks for visiting!  Hope you had a great week!!!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

2017 Blue Jeans Week 30

Hot, busy week.  Miss A was in Washington D.C. serving as a counselor for the American Legion Auxiliary Girls Nation program this week.  She had a great time!  We worked on some summer bucket list items and tried to stay cool!  Take a look at our week. . .
Miss A and the junior counselors at Girls Nation this week in Washington D.C.

Miss A and her group of Girls Nation Senators that she was over for the week.

Miss E got the top of her t-shirt quilt done!  Yeah, now just the back, quilting and binding to do . . . fun stuff!

We made freezer jam this week--our traditional strawberry and this year we branched out and made strawberry-blueberry too.  Yummy!!! 

Keeping cool on a hot summer evening and playing Clue!

One of my bestest friends and I got to the city and went to my favorite ice cream place.  Yummy!  I got key lime pie and queen of hearts (which was chocolate and raspberry--divine!)

Miss E and I got out on a cooler evening and played some outside checkers at the park.  Lots of fun! 

Hope you had a good week!  Thanks for visiting!  

Monday, July 24, 2017

2017 Blue Jeans Week 29

We have hit the "dog daze" of summer.  It is SO HOT!  Ugh.  No one wants to go outside--it is so hot and humid.  Trying to stay in and stay cool.  Take a look at our week. . .

Trying to stay cool--Mr J and Miss E playing some checkers

On a slightly cooler evening, we were out on the porch while Ben read to us.  It is nice when you can be outside for a little.  

One of the things on the girls' summer bucket list was to make macaroons.  They did some mini lemon ones.  Yummy!

Miss E has been teaching swimming lessons that last couple of weeks.  She enjoys that in addition to her lifeguard duties.  It is something different besides just life guarding.

Ben and Mr J relaxing on the trampoline after a fun water balloon fight--thinking of ways to keep cool.

Miss E gets Ben with a water balloon this weekend.  We needed a way to cool off, so Mr J suggested a water balloon fight :) Lots of fun and felt good!

Thanks for visiting!  Hope you had a great week!

Monday, July 17, 2017

2017 Blue Jeans Week 28

Got away for a little bit this week.  Went up to Omaha, Nebraska.  Ben and I have been there several times for his work retreats, but we haven't taken the kids in several years.  Had a lot of fun!  It was hot, but found ways to cool off and just enjoy being together!  While in Omaha, you MUST...
Go to the Henry Doorly Zoo!  It is awesome!  Our kids loved it as little kids, and still loved it as big kids!  It is a cool place!

Visit the desert dome at the zoo--soooo cool!

Visit the aquarium at the zoo--so awesome!

Stay downtown in the Old Market area!  There are so many places to eat.  We chose some yummy ones.  Had dinner one night at Block 16 which Alton Brown says has the best hamburger in the U.S.--Ben tried it--it had ham, a fried egg and huge burger patty.  He said it was very good.  Their unique fries were also amazing--"Dragon Fries" and "Crab Rangoon Fries" were our favorite.

Walk around on all the trails and around the Heartland of America Lake.  So pretty with it's huge fountain.

Eat ice cream at Ted and Wally's---the best ice cream in Omaha.  It was right across the street from our hotel which was perfect.  Yummy, unique homemade ice cream.  Flavors change everyday.  Perfect on a hot summer day!

Visit the art museum!  It was really cool!  Omaha is a fun place that we really enjoyed.

Hope you had a great week!  Come back soon!

Monday, July 10, 2017

2017 Blue Jeans Week 27

Love the 4th of July.  One of my favorite holidays.  Love flying my flag.  Love honoring my country!  So grateful for the many men and women who have given SOOOOO much so we can be free.  Love our founding fathers.  Love this quote by author David McCullough about the founding fathers, "They were not perfect.  They were imperfect---that's what's so miraculous."   So true!  Great week.  Take a look. . .
This boy Loves shopping for fireworks.  We have him the money he could spend, and then we went to three different firework stands until he found the cheapest price for what he wanted.  Love it! 
Swim meet this week.  The last of the season for Mr J.  He did awesome!

A 4th of July tradition at our house is our Jello flag :)  Been making it for years.  Yummy!

Another fun 4th of July treat we have is this magical layered drink.

So awesome how it works.  Got it from Mel's Kitchen Cafe here--the key is lots of ice and pour the drink onto the ice!   
The kids on their own decided to make cookies and take them to people today.  Awesome!

And summer fun on the trampoline for a minute before it gets too hot!

And finding ways to beat the heat--tried out a new shaved ice place Saturday night.  Yum!  It hit the spot!

Hope you had a great week!  Thanks for visiting!

Monday, July 3, 2017

2017 Blue Jeans Week 26

Busy summer week.  Said good-bye to some very dear friends, enjoyed some cooler summer temps and did fun stuff outside.  Mr J wrapped up his two weeks of summer theater camp with a play, Miss E spent a week in Colorado for church girls' camp and on the school board we said good-bye to our retiring superintendent.  What a week!  Loving summer!  Take a look. . .
We have been friends with this amazing couple since 1998.  Raised our kids together, been though a lot, we moved a few hours away, but we still get together.  They are the kind of friends you can go 6 weeks or 6 months without contact, but as soon as you are together it seems like no time has passed.  They are moving really far away now, and we were so sad to say good-bye.  Will be much longer between seeing them now, but friends forever!  So grateful they are part of our lives!  Good friends are such a huge blessing!

Hello summer and smores!  Enjoying this classic summer treat in our backyard fire pit.  One of the first things we made when we bought our house over 12 years ago was this fire pit in the backyard.  So glad we did this!  Ben and the kids made it.  So grateful they did!

More summer fun...croquet :)

Mr J has been doing a children's summer theater camp the past two weeks.  To wrap it up, they do a play.  He was Prince Charming in a mixed up fairy tale play.  He said he didn't realize some people had the same shoe size, and the shoe fit Cinderella's step sister, so he married her :)  It was a cute play.  He really enjoys things like that.

I have been on the school board for 2 years now.  Our superintendent was retiring end of June.  Had a thank you and good-bye luncheon for him.  He did a great job and will be missed.  Looking forward to working with the new one for the next few years now.

Miss E and her group of girls who were in Colorado this week for a high adventure church girls' camp.  She loved it!  So grateful for the people who planned it and took such good care of them!

Thanks for visiting!  Hope you have a great 4th of July!