Tuesday, July 22, 2008

A busy weekend for the Vandermarks

This past weekend was a busy one with lots of excitement for all the boys with a couple of truck rides and a couple of parades. Lots of fun! :-)

While I was working from home on Friday, the power company came by to let us know they needed to shut off our power to swap out the transformer across the street. They had a big truck with a crane to move the transformer (as well as a trailer carrying a digger, although they didn't need it for this job). Zach and Alex were beyond excited to see all that cool stuff right in front of the house, so we sat and watched. When the guys came by to tell us they were done, they got such a kick out of them, as Z & A couldn't stop talking (guy! truck! crane! digger!) - so they offered to give them a ride while they turned around in the cul de sac. How cool!

On Saturday we went to the Belle Plaine BBQ Days parade to watch all the trucks, cars, and tractors on display. We sat with Debbie's family, who lives near where the parade route ended this year, which was a lot of fun as all there were lots of kids to play with (big and little). Being at the end of the route really paid off this year, as we hit the motherload of candy because most of the floats still had a bunch left at the end. People would just dump their buckets right in front of us - it was better than Halloween! We had plans to go to the carnival after the boys' nap, but we got hit with a big rainstorm (1" of rain in an hour!) so we didn't make it back.

Sunday was the day of the parade at the Hopkins Raspberry Festival, where Cole's mom is a participant as a member of the Hopkins Fire Department. For the second year she invited Joe, the boys, and me to join her and Cole in the parade to ride on the trucks, which just thrills Zach and Alex beyond belief. This year, Lisa drove one of the big ladder trucks, so Joe, Z & A, and I rode in front with her while Cole rode on the top. We all had a good time waving at the crowds on a beautiful sunny (but warm) day.

We were able to get a couple pictures of the power truck and fire truck rides (although we weren't able to get one of Cole on top of the truck before we had to start the parade); you'll find them in the Jul - Aug 2008 album.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Congrats to Cole and the Hopkins Co-op Dairy Cubs!

After finishing their regular season in second place with a great 11-5-2 record, Cole and the Cubs went undefeated in the playoffs, winning their season tournament. For the final game, they beat a tough Yankees team, the regular season winners. Great job, boys!! (Here's hoping that's an omen that the Major League Cubs will win their World Series too!)

Pictures from the trophy awards, as well as some general pictures of Cole and his little brothers, are in the new July - Aug 2008 photo album.

We have our own park!

Over the 4th of July weekend, Joe put up a playground for the boys with the tremendous help of Papa Bob and Uncle Bobby. Zach and Alex had so much fun watching their daddy, grandpa and godfather build (or rather, slave in the sticky heat) their new playground, and they are thrilled to have a "park" in their own backyard. It's an awesome playground with a tower fort, a slide, swings, monkey bars, a climbing wall and tunnel, and a sandbox. It even has a telescope and a steering wheel. The guys did a fantastic job! Check out the progress pictures in the July 4th Weekend photo album.

As you can see from some of the pictures, it wasn't all work that weekend. We had a great time on the evening of the 4th with Bobby and Kwo Ue, who came over for dinner and some boom booms. We shot a few of them off early so Z & A could see them - they totally loved it, especially Alex!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Hooray Alex!

In a move that thrilled Mommy and Daddy beyond belief, Alex used the potty for the very first time today. We've been encouraging the boys to sit on the potty before bathtime, and for the first time, Alex actually went potty in it. He sure was proud of himself, especially when he got high-fives from Mommy, Daddy, and Cole. This was after asking to go to the potty during his bath yesterday and sitting there for long time to "work on poop"; Zach has done this a couple times too so he might be getting close too.

We know we've got a long way to go through this process, but we're thrilled that we're getting started on it with them. I wanted to get a picture, but Joe wouldn't let me embarrass him with that (he's no fun).

Part of me really feels silly for getting so excited about poop and going potty (ah, the simple joys of parenthood), but in addition to being excited about a new milestone in the boys' lives, it sure is nice to know there is a light at the end of the tunnel through the mounds and mounds of diapers! :-)