Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Two Very Special Ladies

Mother's Day is less than two weeks away and I wanted to write a post honoring two very special ladies in my life. Below is a picture of my mom, Dorothy (on the left) and my mother-in-law, Bobbie (on the right).

My mom has always been such a great support for me. My sister, Michelle, and I were both raised Lutheran. Mom made sure we went to church as a family every Sunday and attended Sunday school. I have carried that tradition on with my family as well.

Mom has shown unconditional love for me my whole life. I never felt like I wasn't good enough, smart enough or pretty enough. She has always been there for me when I needed her and stepped back on those rare occasions when she knew she shouldn't.

Mom is a wonderful Grandma to our children. The boys and Elsi love to spend time at her house and she enjoys their company. They like to play games, makebelieve, watch movies and go to the waterpark in the summer.

I praise God for the wonderful Mom He has blessed me with.

My mother-in-law, Bobbie, is my second mom. Steve and I married in '95 and she has always made me feel like her daughter (not a daughter-in-law:)). She is a mother to 6 boys, all of whom have wives and children.

Both Bobbie, and her husband, Bill, make sure all of the Scheuer families feel loved and supported by them. They take the time to attend as many soccer, basketball, softball, football games, plays, band concerts, muscials, etc. they can. Bobbie has such a tender and kind heart and is always putting others before herself.

My little Elsi just adores her Nana. She knows she gets the kind of loving that only a grandma can give from her. The kind that is patient, gentle and soft-spoken. (Sometimes Mom isn't so much that way:)). And that's what Grandmas are for:)!

So this Mother's Day I want to make sure that both Mom and Bobbie know how much they mean to me and our family. They are such special people in our lives and we look forward to spending Mother's Day with them.

It makes me sad, that there are families who don't take or make the time to spend Mother's Day with their mothers. I understand that families are busy and lives are hectic, but one day out of the year to honor the person who gave birth to you, raised you, loved you unconditionally and continues to, even to this day, is too difficult to make time for. That just really makes me sad.

I hope those reading this blog will take and make time for their mothers in less than two weeks, by spending the day (if geographically possible), phoning or sending a card or letter.

Happy Mother's Day to all the wonderful Mothers out there and I hope you have as great of a mother and mother-in-law that I do!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Tent Camping...not for me:)

Our dear friends, the Tiedtke's (who else:)?), invited us to go tent camping with them at Ottawa Lake Park for a fun-filled weekend.

Steve and I camped a few times in a tent, in our pre-children era. We did camp one time with Isaiah when he was about 3 years-old in a tent. We then wised up and bought a pop-up camper. We thoroughly enjoyed our 1981 hard side Apache camper. Ahhh, what fun times we had with that camper. We then moved on to building a cabin near Wisconsin Dells. We decided we no longer needed the pop-up (or so we thought), so we sold it. Well, when we were invited to go tent camping, I thought it would be fun.

Ahem, I stand corrected.

Yesterday (Friday) was beautiful. Drew and April thoughtfully set up our tent for us prior to us arriving with the family. I loaded everything in to Penelope and cruised on over to the campground with the top down. Steve met us there after work. It was a bit breezy, but temperatures were in the 80's. We enjoyed a wonderful time around the campfire (started by Noah), roasting marshmallows and making smores. The adults then did their Friday night Bible study.

Then came bedtime. We had a wonderful air mattress to sleep on, but it's just not the same! My neck hurt, my back hurt, my legs hurt and I was cold. The low was only 62 degrees, but the ground was cold! to mention the gale force winds that were moving through. Elsi was exhausted, tired and crabby.

I woke up Saturday morning around 6:30 am to go for my walk. I was surrounded by swarms of bugs for the majority of my 7.5 miles.

Upon arriving back at the campground, I ate breakfast and then went to shower. While showering, I was serenaded by croaking toads at my feet. Yikes! I then was stuck in the bathroom for a bit (with my toad friends), because a thunderstorm had begun to move through and I didn't care to venture out in the treacherous weather. Steve thoughtfully came to pick me up in the car and both the Tiedtke's and Scheuer's decided it was time to pack up camp and hit the road.

Packing up camp in the rain is no fun. Let me make it crystal clear that Steve did the majority of the packing, I only helped a little. We then left for home.

Noah illustrating how to build a fire without matches!
Noah is an excellent Boy Scout.

Abby sharing her punch balloon with Elsi

Ben & Simon checking out the amenities of the Tiedtke's tent

Noah relaxing in Penelope

Abby, Elsi and Simon blowing bubbles

Elsi and Noah sitting by the campfire

Mr. Tiedtke adding a log to the fire

Isaiah enjoying a smore

Elsi enjoying some plain marshmallows

Camping is exhausting!

That was the longest 17 1/2 hours of my life.

While the company was delightful (as always), tent camping is not for me.

I think next time, we'll invite the Tiedtke's up to the cabin and they can pitch their tent on our septic field and we'll sleep indoors.

Friday, April 17, 2009

A Day at the Zoo

Today was a beautiful day! I am so blessed to not have to work on Fridays. Drew and April and their son, Simon, invited Elsi and I to go to the Henry Vilas Zoo in Madison, with them. It's a perfect zoo for little people, like Elsi, not so big and overwhelming. The weather was perfect and we enjoyed a wonderful day with some great friends.

Elsi strolling with her buddy

Checking out the rhinos

Following the turtle along the glass


Enjoying lunch

Simon and April

Elsi sharing her Bugle with Mrs. Tiedtke

Polar bear

April and Simon checking out the prairie dogs

A beautiful bird in the aviary

The zoo is one of our favorite spots. You may remember a previous post of our visit to the Milwaukee County Zoo and this rare creature. He may look familiar to you...:)

Sunday, April 12, 2009

A Blessed Easter

Today we celebrated Easter by attending the 8:00 am church service at St. Paul's with 521 other brothers and sisters in Christ.

Pastor Krug sang the solo, He's Alive, right from the pulpit. I love that man and can he ever sing!

We had Easter breakfast in the Fellowship Hall, hosted by the Youth Group.

We joined for a fun afternoon at the Bill & Bobbie Scheuer's house. We gathered with Jim & Fatime and family (with their friends Gary & Faith), Pete & Felicia and family, Bill & Bobbie, Pam (former neighbor of Bill & Bobbie), our family and my mom. It was a beautiful afternoon, so after lunch, the children enjoyed an Easter egg hunt outside.

We are so grateful to have family and friends to gather to celebrate Jesus' resurrection. For without it, we would be nothing. Thank you Jesus for dying on the cross so that we may have eternal life. Alleluia! He is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia!

Isaiah, Elsi and Ben

Elsi and her buddy, Mr. Tiedtke

Elsi spots an egg

Cousin Ryan & Ben on the Easter egg hunt

Isaiah showing his collection to Grandma Bobbie & Grandma Dorothy

Dividing the "loot" evenly

Putting the candy in baggies

Uncle Jim "helping" Elsi (get more candy!)

Face painting:)

Yesterday Elsi took some time to do some face painting. Or perhaps we should call it "face markering." Didn't she do a great job?

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Can someone please tell me....

...when this sweet, adorable baby... to be...

...such a big girl?

About 3 weeks ago, we took away Elsiana's pacifier at the (ahem) young age of 30 months. She cried the first night or two, but then all was well. I think Steve and I were more afraid of the effect on us, more so than on her. Last night marked the first night she spent in her "big girl bed." I think I have been unconsiously been putting this off, because she is definitely our last baby and I wanted to hold on to that as long as I could:). She did a great job, but that could have something to do with the fact that she was absolutely exhausted after "napless" afternoon with Nana and Papa and was just too tired to move:).

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Journey to the Cross

Yesterday at St. Paul's we had our Journey to Cross for Lent in place of our regular Prime Time session. This was a wonderful opportunity for the children of the congregation (and parents who chose to participate) to use their five senses to experience the "journey" that Jesus took before his crucifixion. It was enjoyed by all. The children were really excited about the live donkey, which our wonderful friend, Chuck, procured from a local petting zoo.
Chuck with the donkey

Isaiah petting the donkey. Such an animal lover:)