Sunday, June 27, 2010

Mark and the Giant Corn Stalk

Check out our corn. It's got to be at least 10 ft tall. Chris is 6ft tall and M is about 3ft and this corn is higher than them two combined. I'm only 5ft something and I look down right dimunitive next to this giant corn. And it keeps growing and growing. I'm telling you, just today it must've grown by about a foot. So we estimate that it's 11ft tall now. How about that?!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father's Day Weekend

What did we do? Nothing special, just the regular ol' things. Of course, you can look at it from the point of "poor Dad, he didn't get anything special for his day". But I prefer to look at it in a positive way, as in "wow, it seems every weekend is a Father's Day weekend over here". Regardless...

Our garden is thriving and we even picked a couple (literally) tomatoes just in time for the Father's Day. We're expecting many more in the next few weeks. As a matter of fact, we're expecting so many tomatoes this year that I'm already planning on canning a few jars of homemade tomato sauce and homemade salsa.
Yeah, check out our tomatoes - they've come a long way since Chris first built the trellis. BTW, the ground cherry Chris ordered is also thriving (turns out, it doesn't need much attention, just a bit of water) and both my guys enjoy freshly picked ground cherries (good for them, I personally don't like the taste).

But wait, this is not a post about our garden, but about Father's Day weekend. Although now that M. acts like he's an Energizer bunny, waking up extra early and running all day long, we spend all our weekends being chased by him.

Anyway... back to the Father's Day... This morning we rented a pedal boat at Lake Johnson. We've lived in this area (2 miles from the lake) for almost 4 years and been to the lake countless times, but this was the first time we actually went on the lake. So Chris wanted to rent the boat for 1 hr, but we weren't sure how the munchkin would like it, so we got it for only 30 mins. And before the time was up, we started wishing they offered shorter, 15-minute, rentals.

M. loved the pedal boat (yeah, we did chose the red one) and his red floatation vest. He immediately realized that pedaling was hard work and demanded to be in charge of steering. No problem, except when he's in charge, he's really in charge - noone else can touch the steering wheel. Which, of course, presented a problem as we were going in all sorts of crazy zig-zags, mostly against the current and the wind and towards every concievable obstacle. Still, it was a lot of fun, needless to say - good work-out for us. We might do it again next weekend (or not).

Then in the afternoon we went to the corn mill to watch corn griding demonstrations. M. is crazy about mills - corn, flour, sawmills, paper mills, you name it. That's his new obsession (Thomas the Train is relegated to early morning hours when we're not sufficiently awake to do anything fun and can only sit on the rug in his room with eyes half-closed, move toy trains back and forth and mumble unintelligebly that there's a crack in the track and the workers will be by soon).

But when we are fully alert, it's mill time - books about mills, drawings of mill gears, stories about Pig the Miller, etc. The marble run M. got for New Year's and that used to be his chocolate factory is now a flour mill. And the house stairs are a chute of a corn shacking machine.

Fortunately, a trip to a mill is a pleasure for all. It's such a beautiful place with a nature trail, a pond, lots of picturesque places for picnics, and an air-conditioned museum with working models of various mill gears and a cool videos of the mill in action and a beautiful view of the mill itself.

Then in the evening we went for a concert in the park. This is pretty much the kind of stuff we do on weekends, but I thought it was nice and even when done in a company of an Energizer bunny, not too exhausting.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Trip to Charlotte

This weekend we were away, visiting our friends in Charlotte. How can a road trip to Charlotte be complete without stopping at IKEA for some meatballs and shopping.

I told M. that our friends moved to a new big house full of toys and that when we get there we'd have dinner (and dessert)... So when we got to IKEA he thought that was their new apartment complext (you see, our friends used to live in an apartment).
Still, he wasn't disappointed when we got to our destination late Friday evening. The house is huge and mostly empty, with lots of room to round around and play. There is also a playground and a large pool barely 100 yards away. There was also a large grassy backyard with plenty of room for Lana's 2-year old son and M to run around and play. Add to that the fact that Lana is a terrific cook who serves generous portions and NEVER skips desserts and you understand that it was a real holiday for M.

We didn't do much exploring while in Charlotte. Actually, we didn't get to see Charlotte itself, except its skyline. Instead, we spent most of Saturday at the pool. Lana packed a bag-full of snacks and juice. I'm telling you, it was dream come true for M. who went from hating the idea of getting into water to "snack first, swim later" to "Mom, this water is so GREAT" in the space of an hour.

We had to leave pretty early on Sunday, but had time for a little side-trip to Waxhaw, a tiny little town just a few miles from our friends' house. It was absolutely charming even though all the businesses on Main St were closed for the day. We walked around a bit, watched a couple of CSX trains pass by, and stopped at a small park so that the kids could run around a bit before heading back.

M and Xander, chilling...