Sunday, May 20, 2012

Countdown to Summer!!

It has been mass hysteria around the Schulte Household in anticipation for the summer!  I am busy getting enough things organized to keep my kiddos busy for those long boring summer days.  The kids are just itchin to get out of school and sleep in (yeah right) and to stay all day in our pajamas.  Okay, maybe that is just mommy's fantasy summer.
 Last week the kids school had a wonderful schoolwide event called "Run into Summer".  Many parents and older siblings came to cheer on their kids and to run with them as they ran a designated course around the school.  The little girls and I headed down to the school with a picnic lunch and waited to see Rosie and Bubba line up at the start line.  They started each grade one at a time so we got to see each of the two kids start and then headed to the finish line to see both cross the finish line and receive their medal. 
 The PTA also provided each student with a t-shirt that day and the kids afterward during the picnic ran around with sharpies signing each other's shirts.  SO CUTE!!  So much better than a yearbook. 
 Here is all the grades lined up doing their jumping jacks to warm up.
 The kids were all excited for the day!  It also meant they got to have a picnic outside and go home early since it was an early out and me and the kids walked home at 12:30. 
 Our own lightning bolt had a good start!!  Bubba was right at the front of the pack from the start. 
 He was all smiles when he crossed the finish line, but by the time I got to him at the receiving line he had tears coming down his cheeks.  He was so upset that he was pushed down have way through and was sabotaged!  We really need to work on his gracious losing skills.  Good thing every kid got a medal.  :-)
 Rosetta is all legs and had no problem navigating the course.  Next year I will have to coordinate it better, so I have a babysitter for Lil Miss so I can run with them.
This Weekend we had our second camping trip.  It went much smoother than our first weekend so that must mean we are getting the hang of this.  I am also getting much better at cooking in the camper.  Last weekend it was hotdogs, pudgy pies... and then I ran out of ideas.  But this weekend i made taco salads, baked chicken strips, baked beans, and dutch oven potatoes.  We ate much better!  :-)
 There was lots of hiking on our trip this time.  Last week we spent alot of time finding geo-caches, this week we found a few but spent more time hiking and enjoying the scenery.  We invested in a new backpack for Lil Miss, since carrying her around was getting to difficult and this terrain a stroller wouldn't have made it, and letting her walk by herself is out of the question! 

 {snack time -- apples and swinging   Isn't life sweet!}
 {Of course Mommy found a beautiful Rose garden}

 {take time to stop and smell the roses}
 We dared to go to the Wildcat Den Park with 4 kids who hadn't had a nap, but the kids did wonderful.  I am so glad they LOVE nature as much as me.  It is amazing that this landscape is only 40 minutes away from us.  We spent the whole weekend enjoying each other that the kids didn't have to ask to watch tv, play video games, or say "I'm Bored!"
{Our 3 adventurers}
{Daddy and I took turns carrying this little munchkin on our back}
 The three older kids and mommy climbed a rock wall to a cave.  Rosetta was a little leary about the heights, but she made it up.  It was so nice to have her want mommy's hand to hold and need me. 
 Mommy was not as graceful climbing the face of the rock as the kids.  They are so nimble and Bubba isn't afraid of scaling rocks or sliding down the hill as fast as he can. 
 {Look smiles after a loooong day}
 Daddy was multitasking with Lil Miss strapped to his back.
 One of the main attractions of the Wildcat Den Park was the Pine Creek Grist Mill.  I didn't think we would spend much time in it, thinking it would be really boring for the kids (and maybe me too!) but the kids enjoyed it and we had a hard time getting them to leave.

 {cool wall of handmade wheels}
 When we were just getting ready to leave the lady who runs the mill told us they were getting ready to start up the mill in 5 minutes.  It was fascinating.  The kids got a small idea of how the mill really made it easy to make flour, birdseed, etc.  A lot easier than when they had to grind flour with a rock.  They tried it though.
 We got our very own birdseed that we saw being made.  Rosie was the one to throw the corn ears in the bin to start the process.
We made the arrangements to camp near Muscatine for a simple reason to support our adoption agency with a fundraiser/raising awareness with a bike ride across Iowa.  5 guys rode across Iowa yesterday 276 miles and we were the finish line cheering them on their journey.  They made it into the park at 9:30 pm.
{I can only imagine what their legs felt like after biking ALL that way!!  they had smiles on their faces though and answered all our kids questions about their bikes and "what's that?"}

 The kids and I (lil miss included) made a banner for them as they rode into Muscatine. 

It was a late night by the time we got back to the camper and jumped into bed.  We packed up this morning after breakfast and headed back home.  The girls were in the backseat jamming to Lemonade mouth.  I Love that they were sharing the music.  We are already trying to plan where our camper takes us the next time we journey out.  Any Ideas?  We won't be camping for another month since we are going to Disney in 21 DAYS and I have SOOOOOO much to do before then.  So we haven't made any other reservations yet, but I think the next campsite has to have a pool or at least a lake to cool off.  It sure was a hot one this weekend.   Time to call it a weekend.  Monday tomorrow and only 4 more days of school!!!!

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