"When you called me to be a Mama, You didn't ask for perfection. But that with every breath, I'd point them to You."

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

our first weekend of May

May greeted us on a Friday with a warm smile, a weekend stretched before us and lots of sunshine. It was everything we needed. As I was winding down Sunday night with laundry and cleaned kitchen counters, I told myself I would happily endure 1,000 winters for weekends like this one. It's why I'm convinced Iowans appreciate things on a level unknown to other parts of the country. We face the wind and the cold and the darkness. We buckle down to face the worst of it. And when the storms pass and the snow melts, we open up our windows, throw open our sunroofs, unpack our shorts and tank tops and come out smiling - stronger, happier and all the better for having been through it all. I may get cranky in January and February but May and September make it all worth it. And for my kids, it seems that first 80 degree day is almost as good as Christmas morning. If only the pool had been open! I found freckles on my shoulders Monday morning from getting so much sun and the boys both went to bed Sunday night with sun-kissed cheeks. And there's much more ahead where that came from... summer awaits.

Our weekend went like this...

Friday night we headed to Toad's on Main Street for supper. I was craving some raspberry chipotle boneless wings and the kids were hyped up for the weekend and definitely needed a night out on the town. My parents joined us for dinner and though they were out of the raspberry chipotle, the parmesan garlic became a new favorite. We had such a good time at dinner that we decided to drive around town with the windows down before going home. We let the breeze fill our car, watched the sun set through the windshield and drove through our favorite neighborhoods while the boys laughed and giggled senselessly in the backseat the whole way.

We woke up Saturday morning with plans to visit the first Farmer's Market of the year. We don't usually buy a whole lot when we go, but it's a good excuse to head downtown and enjoy the sunshine. We picked out one giant pot of flowers, Jaden nabbed a snow cone and Brandon picked out a cupcake that he of course only ate the top half of because... frosting! We enjoyed our treats from a nearby park bench and Brandon - being the happy outdoorsman that he is - was more than happy to model for the camera.



From Main Street we headed to College Hill where we sat at a little outdoor bistro table while I sipped on a Mocha Latte from Sidecar before heading into Razor's Edge for Brandon's hair cut. And then we decided to make an adventure out of our flower shopping this year, driving out to a nursery in the country to do some picking. So worth the little bit of an extra drive. We'll never buy flowers from HyVee again. ;)

After coming home for lunch, we spent a couple of ours making a little oasis out of our deck. Brandon helped Daddy pot the flowers, Jaden helped water them and I worked on arranging them. We got our little fountain out of storage, opened up our umbrella and watched our outdoor space transform with colors.

Brandon had his last swimming lesson on Saturday afternoon, so it was the perfect opportunity for Daddy and Jaden to get some rest inside while watching the end of the NFL draft. (Jaden watched... I think Daddy took a nap!) ;) After passing swimming lessons with flying colors, Brandon and I decided to make a trip to Target for some new watering cans. He picked out his, I picked out mine. We came home in time to drop Jaden off at a Saturday night birthday party while the three of us headed to Cassi's to grill our dinner and play with baby Ivy for the rest of the night.

Sunday greeted us with temps in the 80's! We made it to church before spending the rest of the day at open houses with pit stops at the river and playgrounds in between.

We had the most fun walking the river banks. The boys immediately threw their shoes and socks off and waded in the water that was sparkling with the sunshine. The park was filled with geese and it was the funniest thing watching the boys chase them and run with them.


And there we were, being anything but peaceful, as three college kids - two girls and a guy - were trying to sunbathe in their swimsuits while studying for finals. I immediately apologized for the commotion, but they didn't seem to mind and even seemed to enjoy the distraction and humor our boys were providing for them as they were sprawled out on the sand with their textbooks open. That was until our boys spotted the "sea snake" and Cody managed to catch it out of the water within a minute. The college boy jumped to his feet and ran as fast as he could to the nearest picnic table, appearing a little bit embarrassed but not at all sorry for it. The word snake was all it took for him to hightail it far away from the river's edge. His girlfriends had a good laugh, as did Cody, at his expense. But he was a very good sport through the whole thing.



We wrapped up our afternoon at a nearby playground before heading home to cool down with ice cream sandwiches before pasta dinner on the deck and late evening thunderstorms. It was a good weekend.