Monday, May 30, 2011

Easter at Purina Farms!

Purina Farms is about 45 min away from my parents' house and they have a great event every Easter where you can come see the Easter bunny, they have a petting zoo and you can watch a dog show. We went a couple of years ago when Eric was in Iraq and got lucky to go again this year. We had such a fun time.
Cade isn't quite sure whose lap he is sitting on!

Watching dog jumping--it is amazing how far some of those dogs can jump!

Dogs doing tricks--they were catching frisbees, running through obstacle courses--it was great!

Petting bunnies
Petting the tiny baby chick
All that petting wore Kailey out--she is taking a little nap in the dog bed!

Maramec Springs

Still catching up from St. Louis!! One of the places we went while we were there was Maramec Springs--it is one of the most gorgeous places and what makes it so fun is that it has HUMONGOUS fish that you can see and feed. The kids loved it. Here are a few pictures from our fun day!

Dad, Mom, Brooke and the kids

Getting more fish food with Papa--luckily he brought a LOT of dimes and quarters!
Cade walking with Brooke--she is such a good aunt!
Looking at the fish

Grandma and Cade
Feeding the fish--it was amazing--you would throw the food in and you would get swarms of fish coming and trying to eat it--I had so much fun feeding the fish, but the kids were in heaven!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Fun in Tokyo without the kids!!!

This past weekend, Eric and I went up to Tokyo for the weekend. Our wonderful friend and neighbor, Hayes, offered to watch the kids for us--his family is still back in the states and he claimed "he needed some kid time!!" It was very nice of him and the kids had a BLAST!!! Everyday now, Ethan asks me if Hayes can come over and play!! Anyways, Eric and I took off Friday afternoon and headed up to Tokyo. We went to this awesome ninja restaurant that night for dinner. It was this door and you walk in and then all of a sudden there was a secret door that opened and a ninja took you through some secret passages and used his "ninja magic" to fix broken bridges and then we got to our table which felt like was underground in a cave--it was pretty cool. We ordered a set course and the food was AMAZING!!! We got throwing star crackers for an appetizer, and the rest of the food was culinary masterpieces--foie gras, sushi, etc--very good. One of the courses was some sort of mollusk in a shell that they set on fire at our table--very cool. At the end of the dinner, we had a ninja come and do magic tricks for us at our table and he was amazing--I couldn't figure out how he did any of the tricks he was doing. To say the least, it was probably one of the most pleasurable and memorable dining experiences that we have had.

Our ninja waitress using her ninja powers to make some amazing soup at our table!!

The next morning we woke up bright and early to go check out the Tsukiji fish market. It is the largest wholesale fish and seafood market in the world and is at top of all the lists of things to do in Tokyo. Usually they have tours of the fish market, but due to the recent earthquake/tsunami the tours are cancelled right now. We ended up just wandering around. It was pretty unbelievable. The place was hustling and bustling (we were there at 6 in the morning) and it was huge. There were tons of stalls with every kind of fish or seafood imaginable and a lot of things that I had no idea what they were. One of the biggest draws of the market are the tuna auctions--they have these closed auctions where they auction off HUGE tuna. We saw them doing it, but they have japanese cops all around that won't let you in. Anyways, here are a few pictures of what we saw.

They had carts and cars zooming around everywhere--we had to be really careful not to get ran over!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Cinco de Mayo Fiesta!!!

We invited some of the JAGs from Eric's office over for a Cinco de Mayo party. I must say it was a hit and I think that cinco de mayo is the kids' new favorite holiday. We had yummy food (I made Cafe Rio salad--a sweet pork salad with cilantro dressing, cilantro lime rice and black beans--yum!!) along with guacomole, bean dip and some other yummy treats. For dessert I made these really delicious chipotle chili brownies--they had just a bit of kick! The highlight was the pinata. We had bought it the weekend before and every morning the kids would ask me if it was "pinata day"!! Anyways, here are some pictures--we had a fun, fun night!!

We colored pictures and decorated the door to welcome everyone to our fiesta!!

Part of the "mexican" spread--notice the mexican colors-green, red and white!!

Our good friend, Hayes, helping Kailey hit the pinata!

One more action shot!
Ethan getting in on the action--after the kids hit, we called in the big guns and had some of the adults take turns beating the pinata!! I forgot how much fun it is to hit a pinata!!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Pink Potty Party!!!

When Kailey was potty training, my friend promised her a pink potty party when she was all the way potty trained. Well, anyone that knows Kailey, knows all you have to say is "pink" and "party" and she will pretty much do anything. Kailey has been potty-trained for awhile, but we kept waiting for all of our friends to be in town. Well, then the earthquake hit and I knew it would be a LONG time before all of our friends would be back--in fact most of our friends still aren't back and a lot aren't coming back. Anyways, we decided to do our pink potty party while we were in St. Louis with Grandma and while Brooke was home. Kailey was adamant that no boys were allowed, so Papa, Cade and Ethan had their own party. We had pink everything and then Kailey got new panties--a most successful pink potty party and such a fun idea!!

The boys mowing the lawn while we were having our pink potty party--they had to do man stuff since we were doing girl stuff!!
Ethan and his Papa are such good little buddies and it is so fun for me to watch how much fun they have and how much Ethan wants to be just like Papa!!

Fun walk with Papa and Grandma

One Sunday morning, my parents took Ethan and Kailey to a nearby park to go on a walk to see all the pretty wildflowers. The kids had so much fun. I have to say, I am sorry we were away from Eric, but we had such a fun time in St. Louis and I am so glad that my kids are developing such a special relationship with their grandparents.
Running away from Papa!
Hiding in the log

What pretty wildflowers and of course, Ethan always has to have a stick when we go hiking!

Wildlife Bird Sanctuary

Brooke came to visit for a couple of days while we were in St. Louis and one of the days we went with her to the Wildlife Bird Sanctuary. Here are a couple of pictures.

My adorable little Dodo Bird!!

My little eagle

Feeding the chickens

St. Louis Conservation Day

One of the first weekends we were back in St. Louis, one of the nearby parks had a huge conservation day. We had so much fun. The kids got to pet fish, turtles, snakes, dogs, etc. They got free camouflage hats--just what every little kid needs!! It was a great time. Here are some of the pictures.
Hugging the Duck

Modeling his new hat

Ethan being a silly eagle

Petting the turtle

Petting the snake--I made Papa help the kids with that one!

Scooping things out of the pond