Wednesday, May 9, 2012


Spring in Chicago is anything but predictable. We had weather in the upper 80s before the official start of spring and weather in the low 40s weeks after spring began. It makes for squirrely children that would rather wear tank tops than sweatshirts and sandals instead of boots. Spring allergies were in full bloom weeks before they normally are and outdoor activities are day to day at best. We had picnics in the park in early March and were cuddled under multiple blankets with hats, gloves, scarves, and hot chocolate at Sydney's opening day for softball (so cold, I didn't bring out my camera...the iPhone had to suffice). Winter has it's own slow's predictable, our schedules are pretty consistent, we're far enough into the school year to expect what's coming. But spring. Spring is like taking our lives, throwing it into a cup and shaking it as hard as we can letting the pieces fall where they may.  It's like craziness comes with the bloom of the flowers. We are in full swing of spring activities...softball, dance with a the recital looming and extra practices thrown in, art shows, music programs, school, homework, gymnastics, play dates, birthdays...all while trying to start my business and oversee an American Cancer Society fundraising event. Never a dull moment, but that's how I like it. And, rarely a complaint from the kids. They like to be busy as long as they're not rushed and we throw in the occasional snuggle Friday and lazy Sunday. We still have more than a month of spring to go and the countdown to the last day of school has begun.  Sadness is mixed in with excitement.  My girls know a good thing when it's here and they both love the classes they are in and their teachers. Skyler said to me the other day that everyone seems happy that school will be over, but she isn't.  She absolutely loves her teacher and the thought of not seeing her everyday casts a shadow over the freedom of summer.  I loved school and it makes me immensely happy that my girls love it, too.  I so appreciate the teachers and staff at their school for providing such a wonderful environment for them to learn.

Between my camera and my iPhone, I have captured some of the craziness, maybe in an attempt to slow down...maybe to stop time for just a moment...

While normally an outsider, every once in awhile we are invited in to watch and participate in dance class. These are a few photos taken during Skye's ballet class.

It was Skyler's idea to put up a bird feeder this year.  All the kids and I have enjoyed watching the birds stop by for a bite.

The learning curve for blowing dandelion seeds is greater than I though...It got a little close to his mouth here!

This is the face Cole made after I told him the weeds couldn't come in the house because they make me sneeze.

Skyler and her Brownie troop removed weeds and planted flowers in front of their school for Earth Day. It was a great project!

While we were planting, Cole and Todd were building some furniture for his "Big Boy" room

Cole likes to dig in the dirt and sand whenever he gets a chance. Here, we were on a nature hike  at our local nature center.

We took a trip to Chicago Botanic Gardens. It has vast beauty with hidden waterfalls. It was a lovely day!

Cole getting a lift from his Grandpa.

THe girls modeled for me while Cole took a potty break. Photos come out so much better when they're being silly and having fun!

Cole and his cousin, a bit.

I know Cole will someday be quite upset at me for posting this pic, but it is too cute not to share.

Found inside the birdhouse that was stored for the winter.

Opening day for softball.

A self-portrait of me at Syd's game. I'm hoping that was the first and last cold one of the year!

Each year, our family participates in the American Cancer Society Walk and Roll. I co-chair the event and my family and friends participate! Here are a few photos from the event:

Cole is into exercising. 

This is me with co-chair Marisa and committee member Karina.

Todd like to feel like he was on the Amazing Race while driving us to deliver water and cheer on the walkers and rollers.

Sydney jogged in the last few steps...all the kids walked 5 miles!

And, for those times when I leave my camera behind, the iPhone takes over. These are a few of my iPhone pics:

Sunset on the softball field. It may be in the middle of nowhere, but it sure is pretty.

Skye takes every opportunity to work on her gymnastics that she can.

Spring blooms around our house...we were on a puddle hunt. The colors of some of the flowers were so vibrant after a big rain.

Sydney playing 3rd base for her softball team.

Cole found a friend to play with at softball games.   They had fun playing together during the 2+ hour game,

Syd's biggest fans!

Cole takes after his uncle on occasion :)

 I am so thankful that I have a wonderful group of friends that all share the same spring craziness. We support each other, carpool, lend an ear, and help take care of each other's kids as if they were our own.  Each day I am aware that I am part of a village and it takes all of us working together to successfully raise our children...and to retain some form of sanity. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I would be less of a mom without you!