Saturday, September 13, 2014

Labor day weekend at Fair Hills

Well we are back at Fair Hills after a year off due to Eloise's impending arrival last year. It was nice to be back. This year Harriet was really able to enjoy all of the activities they have for kids since she is 4 and the kid group is for 4-8 yr olds. She loved it. Horse rides, a water slide, bingo, a treasure hunt – she was in heaven. 

This year since there were so many of us up there I decided to organize a group picture (no small feat) and it made me wish I had been taking one every year. I guess it is never too late to start a new tradition. It is fun to have documentation of everyone was is up there from year to year. This year we had a bigger group than usual and it was a ton of fun.
 Our annual stop at the big pelican in Pelican Rapids.

 Headed up to dinner at the dining hall.

 Learning to walk with Grandpa.
Harriet had a blast with my cousin's son Zach. He was so patient with her and they loved hanging out together.

 Winner at bingo!

 Ring toss in the lobby.

 Hollyhocks.

 Pretty sure this sign has been up since before I was a baby.

 Horse ride with Cowboy Dan.
Giant water slide on the golf course. 

Heading home we stopped at this sunflower field for a picture. Our heads in perfect descending alignment.

Thursday, September 04, 2014

12 months

One year with this sweet baby. She is so good natured and mellow. What a joy. Stats are: two teeth, not quite walking, but on the verge, 17 lb 2 oz (12th %), 28 in tall (34th %). 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Food truck wedding

Last Saturday we attended my (wait for it) step-second cousin JD's (his dad is married to my mom's cousin) wedding to Jen. It was a lovely, formal ceremony with bag pipes, which I loved, and then a casual reception in the north loop over in a warehouse-type space.
JD has a beautiful singing voice and serenaded Jen with "Til there was you".

Dinner was the Gastrotruck food truck out back with your choice of sliders and sides. I liked it! A very fun wedding!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Lake Harriet elf news story

A couple weeks ago Harriet was featured on a news story about the Lake Harriet elf. The link to the story is here. My dad and Harriet went to a ceremony to honor the elf at city hall and just happened to sit down next to Boyd Huppert, a reporter for KARE 11 (above with them). The rest is history.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Mille Lacs Cabin

After a tad of research and some inquires, we found and reserved a cabin to rent. My little brother Adam and his fiancee Ari planned to visit us and we all thought it would be fun to get out of the city.  This cabin is on Camp Lake in Garrison, MN. It's a small, quiet lake 15 minutes from the larger and very popular Mille Lacs Lake.

The cabin was built by hand and the family who owns it was now renting it out to make sure they could maintain and keep it in their family. It was very unique.

This was our view for four days.

We swam in the lake.

We hung out.
We took a canoe out a couple times. Harriet was a fan of picking some lily pad flowers.

We just missed the wild rice being ready to harvest. The majority of the shoreline was covered in it.

Pretty much all around was lake or marsh land.

The markers and crafts we brought along were all put to good use. In fact, I'm pretty sure we all ended up wearing a mask Harriet made at some point or another.

CABIN BABY! Eloise was really on the move. She started climbing stairs and generally wanted to play, smile and hang out with everyone. This was fine, except when she should have been sleeping.

S'mores were a hit! Adam and I discovered the wonderfulness that is Reese's peanut butter cup s'mores.

Seriously, this baby was really happy! Meal time was one of her favorite. We ate dinner on the outside porch every night overlooking the lake. Eloise even got her first haircut on the porch!

I haven't fished more than a few times since I was in middle school and high school. But after the first night with some live bait I was quickly reminded of how much I enjoy fishing. Here I am really excited I caught a northern. We stayed on the dock and utilized the pontoon anchored next to it for seating and a bit more space. Adam enjoyed coming out as well, especially as the sun was setting and you couldn't keep bait on the hook because of how many fish wanted a nibble.

The last evening, Harriet (with some assistance) caught a bluegill and northern. We're not entirely sure if she hooked the blue gill and the northern took that as bait as Adam netted them -or- perhaps she caught the northern and the bluegill was just swimming into the net. Either way, it was a heck of a first catch for Harriet. She was really proud!

Speaking of big fish, one afternoon we took a drive to see some sights. Basically it became an afternoon taking photos in front of giant creatures. A walleye on the shores of Lake Mille Lacs. 

We ended up driving up to Brainerd. Here Harriet is having a drink in front of the local Brainerd Lion's Club.

Babe, the Blue Ox, in the parking lot out front of Brainerd's Paul Bunyan Land. We decided against paying to see Paul himself.

We tried to find some activities around town, but unless you want to hit Grand Casino you're options are slim to none. We did check out the Mille Lacs trading post. Eloise and a buffalo head. Need I say more?

Another afternoon we went out to Mille Lacs Kathio State Park. The girls seemed to really enjoy the DNR learning center. Especially the eagle's nest.

Harriet, Adam, and Ari swam in this man-made pond in the park. Beautiful weather the entire weekend.

Pretty close to a perfect little vacation.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Best of the worst

Back in the spring, Eloise participated in a study at the U of M and we were given a coupon for a photo shoot at JC Penney, so we gave it a go. Only three pictures from a recent photo shoot were not terrible. Not the fault of the photographer, who was very patient, but both Eloise and Harriet were just not cooperative.