Saturday, April 30, 2011

April 30th

I'm writing tonight from Cathy and Erik's house. We're about to have game night, which is a night where we get together and play games. Our friends Lori and David are joining us shortly and there's sure to be newlywed game, and maybe some other awkward games that require sharing too much personal information. It's bound to be a good night :-)

Right now we're hanging out and eating cheetoes. I don't have any game night gossip yet, but maybe later. This is the last day of April, and amazingly I have managed to meet the goal of posting every day. It's been a fun challenge, and although I won't be posting every day in the future I think it has been useful in making me think to post more often.

So I'll see you in a few days :-) Enjoy your Saturday night!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Adele makes herself clear

Adele is communicating more and more. She gets a lot across with pointing - it's really surprising how much she manages to say with just pointing! She has some words too, and her favorite word is Dada. She looooooves Dada. I ask her to say Mama all the time and this is what she does... I think she is deliberately tormenting me!

We went to the mall after Ben got home and Fiona went on the merry-go-round. Adele got really excited about the ferris wheel and wanted to tell me all about it. She's funny and cute!

When Fiona was this age I used to look forward to when she could talk more, but now she can and it's a mixed blessing, so I'm just enjoying Adele as she is, screechy and pointy and grunty :-) She's lovely.

Thursday, April 28, 2011


Thursday is a no daycare day, so that is one of the days we "do things". I was convinced Adele's physical therapist was coming at 9am, but she's actually coming next week, so we had an extra hour to do stuff. I am glad I was wrong in the right direction - a couple of weeks ago I thought she wasn't coming and when she arrived at 9am the house was a disaster, Adele and I were in our pyjamas and Fiona was running around naked. I do not want to repeat that!

Often on Thursdays we head to the mall for a walk with our friends. One lap of the Mall of America is a little over half a mile so a few laps is pretty good exercise, especially pushing a stroller/carrying a baby/wearing a backpack/any number of other things that make just walking much harder!

After we walk a few laps we let the kids out in the big open space by Hooters to run around.

We also use their bathroom multiple times a visit, and they are super nice about it even though we never buy any wings.

Today we walked with our awesome friends Vicki, Mia and Brecken, and Sang and Annabelle. We love them :-)

We had some lunch together and then headed home for naps. Miraculously both girls took naps and I got some work done and read some of my book for next book club. It's at Cathy's house and we're reading The Help by Kathryn Stockett. Two chapters in it's very good!

Later in the afternoon we played and snacked and colored and danced and I got some cleaning done. Fiona used her tools.

Adele crawled around and practiced standing up. She's getting really good at it!

Then we hit up Cathy and Emily for some babysitting and Ben and I went out for dinner. Yay!! The girls had fun and Ben and I had fun too...

Mmm mexican restaurant.

Good day. friends. Good fun. Good margaritas. And tomorrow is Friday! Couldn't be better :-)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


Today we went shopping after I picked up the girls from daycare. We stopped at Kowalski's because it's really close to daycare and more convenient. As soon as we got there Fiona wanted to go potty, but because it's a smaller store they don't have an easily accessible public bathroom - it's through the back, past the stock rooms, down the steep stairs, past the noisy refrigerators and boilers, past the staff room, and in the corner. It's painted green, which Fiona thinks is really fun, but it's not the simplest journey to make. Of course as soon as we were in there she changed her mind and wouldn't go. Sometimes I think she's just toying with me.

After that we got the shopping we needed and Fiona pushed the tiny cart. She LOVES the tiny cart. Other shoppers do not love the tiny cart. She gets in their way and has a tendency to run into them with it. She sure looks cute doing it though!

She still won't look at the camera!

Ok, so we didn't do anything exciting today. Maybe tomorrow!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Artist in Residence

Fiona is usually more interested in jumping on the couch and screeching than sitting quietly and coloring, so today when she asked for paper and markers I was all for it!

Like her frantic jumping around, her drawings usually tend to be wild and unbridled, but surprisingly today she began to draw people! I was so impressed that I have to share some of her creations, and the commentary that went along with it...

First up: Daddy!

Those patches on his face are cheeks. CHEEKS! I love it :-)

Then Mummy...

To my right is a spaceship. Also...

Fiona: arm, arm... (draws another arm)... that's a beer
Me: that's a beer?!
Fiona: yep, you need a beer.


She also gave me "HUGE legs". I was dying laughing by this point and could not wait to see what was next!

Next - Fiona. Self Portrait:

I kid you not, this one is a profile. She drew it and pointed at the right side and said that was the nose. She drew eyes and a mouth on the right in appropriate places and that scribble in the middle is hair. The spot under the left arm, and the corresponding spot on the right are ARMPITS! The fact that the right arm comes out of her forehead is neither here nor there, the girl's a genius I tell you!

Adele and Brodie:

With Adele she started with tiny arms on either side and then said "Oh, she's so little! Here's her cute little face!" and added a small circle. Later she added legs and decided she needed clothes and filled in the leg space (which I can only assume means the rest of us are naked).


Monty is chanelling an elephant.

Finally - Cathy!

She was running out of steam, so there are no embellishments on this one, but I love it! I'm not sure what the third leg-like addition is, but I am looking forward to many more humanoid creations from my amazing little artist!

Monday, April 25, 2011

4/25. Back to work.

Today we had big event on at work, and I spent the day running around with the girls making final preparations. We had to get some flowers, and when we walked into Bachman's Fiona looked around and said "Oh, how lovely!". The ladies behind us were very entertained, and it was really cute.

We got the flowers and stuck around to have some lunch. Fiona wanted soup, but there was only chicken noodle and chili (how hard is it to have one be vegetarian?! seriously?) so she settled for cheese quiche. I really thought she would like it because she likes eggs and she likes cheese, but even with ketchup it was like I was force feeding her poison. She ate a few bites because she had a cookie waiting for her, and Adele ate an enormous amount - she loved it. Fiona was mostly delighted that we got to eat lunch right next to a fountain, even if it did rain on us a little...

(Here's Fiona, who now looks anywhere except the camera when you take her picture)

Adele, entertaining as always...

Fiona, not to be outdone. But still not looking at the camera!

My ingenious solution for keeping the flowers upright in the car.

The event went really well, and the food was all eaten, which was my biggest concern. However, I totally over-ordered on the cake and have THIS MUCH left over...

This is cake 2 of 2... at least 1 of 2 was polished off. I'll take some to daycare, and Ben will take some to work and hopefully that will take care of it. I'd finish it myself, but the post-vacation diet began today ;-)

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter!

Today we enjoyed the lovely warmer weather and took a walk to the park, and had a quick trip to Ikea to look for basement furniture.

Here's a riddle for you... If a train leaves the station at 8am and I make 8 orange frosted cinnamon rolls for breakfast, then Ben eats one, and Fiona eats two, how many do I end up eating before my post-vacation diet begins tomorrow? If your answer is "however many were left" you'd be correct. Shameful, I know. But ooooooh so good!

This evening Ben put the rear speakers up in the basement and we finally got the electronic dartboard we've had for a few years hung up. We didn't have a good spot for it before, but now we do! After some super fun darts matches on vacation I am determined that the next time I play with other people I will be less bad than before ;-)

Here's the new practice area (and speakers)...

Fiona chowed down on the chocolate egg Michael and Julia (and the cousins) gave her. She was so excited to eat this! She didn't eat the whole thing, and I am trying my very hardest not to sneak into the cupboard and munch on the leftovers myself... If the picture makes it from Ben's phone to my email before I am done, I'll include it :-)

So far, they have not. I'll post those tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Goodbyes and Easter Eggs

Today we sadly said farewell to our vacation companions. They headed south to fly home and we drove north back to our regular lives. We are so lucky to have such fun, accommodating, incredibly generous family, and had a really wonderful time. Fiona keeps asking to go back to 'Sconsin to Chocolate Moose house, and I think we'll be hearing that for some time.

To take her mind off the tragedy that is the end of a vacation, we all went over to Grandma and Grandpa's house this evening to partake in the annual colored egg-stravaganza. This year she was old enough to really enjoy dipping and checking on the eggs, sticking stickers on them, and seeing the magical letters appear. We had a really nice time working on it together.

Cathy took all the following pictures and was nice enough to share them with me so I could blog about it. Thanks Cathy!

Fiona and Scotlyn dip the eggs in the super permanent dye. Beqi and I remain on the alert, ready to leap into action to avert egg dye disaster...


Making invisible letters that will magically appear!


Ryan and Andrew being industrious.


Apparently there is confusion every year in the Tennant house about which eggs belong to which Tennant. Emily solved the problem this year by writing her name on every egg she made. Smart girl!!


Grandma checks to make sure our eggs are up to standard...


We're done! Multicolored egg sandwiches for an entire week - here we come!


Pretty. And magical!


We had a lot of fun, and then chocolate fondue with strawberries appeared, which made this the most spectacular Easter-eve egg party ever. Mmmmmmmmmmmm. Luckily Cathy did not manage to take a picture of me stuffing my face with chocolate dipped strawberries. Post-vacation diet starts on Monday.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Youtube sensations

One of my favourite things about being on vacation with my awesome cousins is all the new youtube sensations they introduce us to. This week's fantastic discovery is... dramatic lemur. You may have all seen it, but if not, it's great :-)

Also, my absolutely fantastic cousin Chris who I love xx showed me this amazing Japanese cat video! Yay internet! :D

Chris wrote that second part, though everything he says is true. Also, somehow he can make blog hearts, and that's pretty impressive!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Quest for the Golden Arches.

Today Ben (in his infinite wisdom) promised Fiona that we could go to McDonalds for lunch so she could play in the big slide. There is a McDonalds 5 minutes from our cabin, but it doesn't have a playland so we ventured further afield. He called them to ask where the nearest one with a playland was and we were directed to one in nearby Baraboo. We got to the one the GPS thought we were aiming for and there was no playland, but they assured us that there was one "further down the hill". The next one we passed along the way also did not have a playland (are you keeping count? That's 3 rejected McDonalds now) and 20 minutes later we arrived at the one that did have a playland, but Fiona had fallen asleep on the way. But dang it, we were going to play! We force fed her some lunch and then she started playing but due to the large number of loud, violent boys in there it was pretty intimidating and poor Catherine had to go in there with her. Worth it? Debatable. But Fiona at least had some fun.

On the way to and from our epic lunch destination we passed a sign for an "adult store and bakery". We're totally going back before Saturday to clear up the question about whether or not the bakery is also "adult". I seriously hope it is.

After lunch and a little shopping in the creepiest sweet shop on earth* we went on the Army Ducks Dells River Tour. Note, the picture on the website makes it look action packed, but luckily it was fairly sedate after the inital terrifying land to river maneuver. It was also absolutely freezing, but that's what you get for vacationing in January. Oh no, hold on, it's April. It just feels like January.

* Seriously, it's super creepy.

The army ducks tour is really fun. It's a world war 2 amphibious vehicle that drives on the road and swims in the water. Here are some pictures.

Fiona was soothed by the deafening roar of the engine and took a nap.

These rocks were made of sandstone and were very interesting.

The tour was great, and then we headed home. Fiona and Adele had a swim in the enormous jacuzzi bath in the cabin (Adele went in in her pool floatie so she could splash around and she loved it) then it was bedtime. Phew.


Tonight was poker night in Chocolate Moose vacation in 'Sconsin house, so I have not left myself much time to make my blog o' the day. So here are some pictures of Fiona making cupcakes with her favourite holiday buddy Catherine.

Mmmmmmm cupcakes!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Indoor activities.

This morning we woke up and it was snowing. I didn't think it was that big of a deal until it was still snowing this evening. We have about 4 inches at this point. Given that, we needed to find an indoor activity and we headed to the Kalahari indoor theme park.

We started with the ferris wheel, which honestly kind of freaks me out. They are too high up and really creaky. Fiona likes them though, so I survived.

After that the boys went go-karting and the girls went on the little rides with the kiddies.

Later we played mini golf.

Here are the scores:
Mummy 55
Daddy 55
Michael 55
Fiona 19
Julia 55
Chris 59
James 65
Catherine 56

Interpret them as you wish :-)

The rest of our adventures will follow tomorrow because Adele has woken up and needs some cuddles.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Swimming on Vacation

Fiona is so funny. She thinks that being in the house we are staying in is "vacation in 'Sconsin". When we are not in the house, we are not on vacation in Wisconsin. It's way too complicated to explain, so we're just going with it.

Today Fiona made brownies with Catherine. She had a wonderful time, and consumed a large amount of batter. The brownies were great, even though she sneezed on them right before they went in the oven. We just assumed all the germs would be killed off in the cooking.

This afternoon we went swimming. We're staying in a lodge house and there's a little complex nearby with a gym and indoor pool and bar and restaurant, and the pool is great. There's a kiddie pool with a slide and sprayers, a deeper pool, and a hot tub with water hot enough to boil eggs*. Fiona loves, loves, loves going swimming, and so does Adele.

Ben got her a little pink boat floatie to sail around in

Fiona loves to splash!

*Note: not proven. Waiting until last day to test hypothesis.

The pool has been a big hit! Makes me think we should have gone bigger with our basement plans!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Oh Deer.

Today we visited the Deer Park. The Deer Park is a park that is full of Deer. It also contains other mammals, mostly of the hooved variety, and some birds. Bizarrely there were also two Lemurs. What's a Lemur anyway? Rodent? Primate? It's the secret sauce of the animal kingdom.

Here are some pictures of our intrepid group getting up close and personal with the Deer.

We will always hold this day deerly in our hearts.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Dream Vacation

This week we're taking a dream vacation in the Wisconsin Dells!

We boarded the dog (well, dropped him off with Emily's fabulous dog sitting service), locked the door, and rolled down interstate 94. These will be the best days of our lives. We can tell.

Here are some of the things we saw along the way!

First we completely filled the car with stuff. Check out that packing job!

We headed out only an hour and a half behind schedule. Once the girls fell asleep we stopped to pick up some lunch on the go.

I don't know if there is a Hardees in MN, I don't remember seeing one before so it was pretty exciting to stop here. I've never had a charbroiled thickburger, and I also did not have one today because I don't eat meat, but I like the way it sounds!!

Fiona woke up a little later and was excited to eat a cookie.

Then we had a leg stretch...

We knew we were in Wisconsin because of all the cheese signs...

And the truck that's a gas station sign. I get excited every time I see this!

Then we got stuck behind this crazy truck. It had a huge load of pipes that was seriously tilting over and looked like it was held together with duct tape and hope. I was convinced that at any second it was all going to topple over.

Luckily we made it past in one piece and then we were almost there! And then 20 minutes later we were there! We're spending the week with My Uncle Michael and Aunty Julia, and my cousins James, Chris and Catherine. Fiona has become Catherine's biggest fan already and they spent a long time hiding together this evening. Cousins are the best! :-)

The weather looks a little dismal, but it's going to be a wonderful week!