Friday, July 17, 2009

You know it's time to clean your refrigeratror when....

your veggies start talking to one another.

Actually, the girls went to a make and take story time and this was what they created. Thankful for the cool weather as their creations will last longer.

Monday, July 13, 2009

A Day at the Zoo

Reagan has been drawing up a storm lately so I thought you might enjoy a couple of her most recent works.


The Lion and the Jaguar

Self Portrait

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Things we learned while residing our house ourselves

1. It will take longer than you expect.
2. Rent the scaffolding on a monthly rate (see #1).
3. Have it bid out by a contractor. It may be cheaper when all is said and done.
4. Your kids will love having a siding store (see picture #1 below).
5. When all is said and done, we surpisingly had very little waste. So far most of our waste has fit weekly into our little 11 gallon trash can. Pallets are being burned by a neighbor in bonfires. Old vinyl siding is going up to Bill's dads house. Scrap ends of new siding so far have ended up in siding store (see #4).
6. No matter how well you plan, you will always have the hottest, most humid weather of the year while you are siding.
7. Don't forget to pull the doorbell wire through the new siding or door jam. Good thing they now make wireless doorbells!
8. Remove window screens before tearing off the old siding (especially the ones you rescreened last year).
9. Picking up nails/staples with a magnet is the same as vacuuming the lawn.
10. It is possible to side your entire house with a broken wrist that is just taped and have it heal well (see picture #2). (Bill broke his wrist the first night of starting this project when he fell after grabbing a bees/hornets hive by accident. He didn't go to the doctor until today (3 weeks later). Doctor was impressed. No cast. Needs to make an appt. with an orthopedic specialist to make sure there won't be any long term problems.)

It is almost done. We are thankful for Bill's boss being understanding and allowing him to take 3 weeks off to get as far as he did. The scaffolding should come down this weekend with mainly just touch up stuff, painting trim, hanging lights and installing wireless doorbell (see #7) remaining. After that, it's inside to stain the back door, insulate and trim both the front and back doors.

Sunday, July 5, 2009


The girls asked to see a picture of me in my wedding dress the other day. So I said what if I just put it on. They squealed..."Yeah"! Well with a little apprehension (especially after 11 years and 2 kids, my body qutie shaped the way it used to be), I put it on this morning. Bill's's time to go back to Hawaii! Reagan's comment..."WOW". Gabby just smiled and giggled.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th of July!

Hope you all have a safe and wonderful 4th of July. We will celebrate the birthday of our country and the freedoms that we enjoy because of our forefathers who founded this country by going to a parade, having hotdogs, smore's and watching fireworks.

Happy 4th of July!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

When the girls are in control of the camera....

While on the phone, the girls found the camera and started taking pictures. Here are a few of their photos.

Mom on the phone by Reagan

What Gabby does best by Reagan

Boy you have a long tongue by Gabby

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Bill's vineyard and Girls doing their thing

Over the past few years, Bill has made several batches of homemade raspberry wine and some hard apple cider. Some good, some not so good. This spring he got the bug to try plain wine. So what do you need for wine? Grapes. Bill planted 13 grape vines this spring (the grower sent an extra one) on the hill in our back yard. One night a deer came along and pulled one out of the ground, probably thinking that he found a tasty treat. Bill replanted it. Then to prevent the deer from getting the rest of them, he put 3 foot cages, fence posts (you know the green metal ones used on farms) and wire around them to keep the deer out. He did lose the one that the deer pulled out. Our lawn has never looked so great in that corner of the backyard (it's the only part that gets watered daily--maybe its time for in-ground sprinklers). So how many grapes do you need to make a bottle of wine?

May need to click on the pictures below to see the details.

This is the vineyard

There are grapes already on

Salsa/Taco Salad Garden

Much more work without the snow

Yep, I think we need to change the oil in this baby

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Reagan's Last Day of School

Last Friday was Reagan's last day of preschool. She was pretty sad that it was over. She has made many friends and really likes her teachers. On her last day Gabby and I stayed for about an hour until teacher's aide got back from her daughter's program. The kids got to play extra long while they took turns finishing up their Father's Day cards, had ice cream sundaes for snack, played chalks and bubbles outside and then had a little "graduation" ceremony.

One last hug in the hall before class. Oh the walls are bare!

Playing the moon game...for the last time!

"I got my certificate and chocolate bar!!" (Which one is she really smiling about?)

Reagan with Mrs. Pam and Mrs. Roventine

Watching both girls on the playing on the playground after class this spring has been fun. Reagan can almost cross the monkey bars herself, can keep herself swinging, climbs the rock walls and "can be a sloth" (hang on a bar and flip over). Gabby keeps up with the school kids and doing just about everything that they are doing. Her limits are the length of her legs (can't get her leg over the top of the climbing wall) and boys...anything with boys around, she shies away.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Gabby's First Day of Preschool

May Day was a pretty big deal in our house yesterday. One of Reagan's teachers was on her way to the Kentucky Derby so her teacher asked if I could sub and Gabby could be a preschooler for the day.

Reagan was estatic to be able to have both her mom and her sister in class. She got up and got dressed right away and was all smiles when she came downstairs. Gabby on the other hand had to be woken up. She was happy to go but she just woke up on the wrong side of the bed. I thought we were in for an interesting day and was beginning to wonder how much I was going to be able to help.

After showing Gabby that she could carry her own back pack, and it was pink to boot, she started squealing with excitement and the morning went so much smoother. She could hardly wait to get to school. Gabby's excitement turned to overwhelmed when all the kids came in and she didn't quite know what to do. She quickly settled in and Reagan showed her the ropes and took care of her little sister.

It was pretty evident how much she felt like a preschooler when it was time for a bathroom break and washing hands before snack. She waited her turn in line and was one of the last ones to go in. When I tried to follow her in to help as she normally needs, she quickly kicked me out, told me she didn't need any help and did EVERYTHING herself just like all the other kids. And the she went and joined the rest of the students.

Another example was the teacher explained the project the kids were to work on. And when Reagan and Gabby got to their table to work on the project, Gabby just started in on the project without any help. She had listened to the directions and understood what she was supposed to do.

I had a great time helping out and seeing Reagan at school with her friends. We are really blessed to have two wonderful girls. Monday may be a tough morning for Gabby as I don't know if she understands or not that she will not be staying when we drop Reagan off at school. They may have another preschooler for the last 9 days of school!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Friday, April 17, 2009

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Spring is in the Air

Itching to see some green and smell some great smells we decided to go to the Como Zoo. Too cold for most of the animals to be out. The duck/flamingo pond was drained and the monkeys/gorillas were all in. But we did see some seals swimming outside.

The conservatory had their spring show going. When you walked in the smell was fabulous. Mostly yellow this time. Pretty but still not as pretty as 2 years ago. But hey, it beats brown!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter Season

Hope you all had a great Easter. We decided to stay in town as colds were being exchanged in our house and we decided that we didn't want to share them! (Are we selfish or what?) Friday we went to Good Friday Mass in the afternoon. Three in the afternoon is a tough time of day to take Gabby to a place where she needs to be quiet and sit somewhat still. Saturday night we went to Easter Vigil at 8 (so close to bedtime...what were we thinking?) because both girls wanted to go. It was an awesome service and the girls were awesome as well. People around us were commenting on how good they were through out the service. Obviously these people didn't sit near us on Friday or they would have moved away from us. Gabby fell asleep about 5 minutes before the service was over (about 10pm). Then off to bed.

The next morning, Reagan woke us up at 6 am. It was tough getting her to wait until Gabby got up sometime after 7. The Easter Bunny had come and brought lots of eggs and treats for the girls. Here are a few pics of the egg hunt. The girls were moving faster than I could take pictures.

After the egg hunt we went outside to play. We tried our hand a flying a kite. The wind did not cooperate though and the kite never got off the ground. Then the girls hit a few balls around the yard. It was a great day. Happy Easter!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Say Cheese....

A mere 36 hours after Reagan discovered she had her first loose tooth, Reagan pulled it out (it was barely hanging on)!! She can hardly wait for the tooth fairy to come!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Sunny Days!

Today was a georgeous day! The girls spent most of the day playing outside, riding scooters, blowing bubbles, pulling the wagon around, trying to jump rope, riding their bikes, etc.... As Bill and I watched we were commenting how much our little girls have grown up.

Lately we have seen or read alot of shows or books that have kids loosing their teeth. Reagan for the last couple of months has been pretending to have a loose tooth. She talked about it excitedly. Well tonight while she was brushing her teeth, she discovered she really does have a loose tooth! And as you might guess her reaction was tears and being scared! She finally calmed down and then decided she was going to tell Gabby she had a loose tooth. She ran right up to Gabby and told her. Gabby, without missing a beat replied "A loose tooth?! I am so excited for you!" What a great sister!

May be the next picture we post will be without a tooth!! I wonder what the going rate for the tooth fairy is these days!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Spring Break 2009

It's Spring Break in the Joseph household! We started our adventures by visiting the library for storytime on Monday. No, it's not too exciting but the girls love it and Reagan only gets to go when she is out of school. So off we went.

Our travels then took us to the Mall Of America on Tuesday...Toddler Tuesday to be exact. They had unlimited kiddie rides for 3 hours for just $10....and free for the parent if the child doesn't meet the height requirement...thanks Gabby! We went with some friends and a grand time was had by all!

After the rides and ice cream, the girls and I visited the American Girl store at the mall. The girls enjoyed looking and playing with the dolls in the store and pushing the baby's around in the strollers. We watched as girls had their dolls hair done at the store for a mere $20....didn't anybody tell them how bad the economy is? It really is a neat store and topped off a great outing.

Gabby fell asleep on the way home and slept for about 2 1/2 hours. Reagan played outside. She played basket ball (with a Whinnie the Pooh ball) with our neighbor for a while and informed us she wants her own basket ball hoop. I don't think she understands how not having a flat spot on the driveway affects the game of basket ball. After dinner Bill aired up the tires and raised the seats on the girls bikes and off they went. Spring is here!!

We have a few more things planned for the week....some fun, some not so fun. Reagan gets to go to the eye doctor today to see if she needs glasses or not. We may go to the zoo tomorrow and another story time on Friday. Bill gets to look at his truck this weekend and see if his latest issue with it is resolvable...may be a somber weekend if it isn't.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

The Girls

The girls have been having fun playing around, but spring can't come quick enough so we can move some play time out doors! Reagan's preschool recently had a beach theme for a couple of weeks. One day they were able to wear shorts to school when it was 25 degrees. Gabby was quite upset and couldn't understand why she wasn't allowed to wear shorts that day too!

Here is Reagan with one of her latest creations:

Here is Gabby giving her babies a ride in their "smart car" stroller (How many babies are in there?):

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Think Spring!

Bill and the girls went up to Glidden to visit Grandpa Jo Jo for the weekend. I took the opportunity for finish up another quilt. It turned out pretty cute and reminds me that spring is just around the corner.

Corner detail:

Center focus fabric and quilting detail:

The back of the quilt with quilting detail:

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Valentines Day!

Reagan's class had their Valentine's Day party today on Friday the 13th. Bill came home from work for a couples hours so I could help out in Reagan's class. I was a little hesistant with it being Friday the 13th. I mean what could happen with 19 kids who were celebrating the day with cupcakes, jello and who knows what other candy that awaited? Absolute fun! The kids were great and had a good time. Gabby even received a valentine from one of the classmates. The kids made necklaces, played bingo, made valentines, pinned the heart on the valentine and then passed out their valentines. I even had a chance to snap a few pictures.

Happy Valentines Day!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Happy Birthday, Daddy!

Where's my raw fish cake?

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Gabby's Quilt is Done

After many hours of hand sewing on the binding, I finally finished Gabby's quilt. She seems to really like it. I know I do! Bill says she doesn't get to take this with her when she leaves the house.

Here is the quilting detail -- hearts and loops all over.

The backing is solid.

Gabby's new bed.

Princess Gabby enjoying her quilt (for some reason this picture uploads sideways so you have to turn your head to the right).