Friday, December 30, 2011

Candy Cane Tea

Julie, Grandma Sue and I took Dru to the Candy Cane Tea at the St. Paul Hotel. It is a tea party with Santa for kids. The table had a formal look with real china. The kids were given hot chocolate and there was a 5 course lunch with small bites of a variety of finger foods. It began with appetizer items and ended with cookies and a cupcake. Dru did well at being careful and trying some of the food. At one point all the children when up on stage to sing Jingle Bells. During the entire song, Santa held Dru above all the other kids. So cute!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Dru's 4 year photos

Dru and I went to the Walker Art Center where Mandi again took her birthday photos. Mandi did a great job chasing her around, especially since she is pregnant with twins! Dru is tough to photograph as she doesn't sit still for more than a few seconds. I keep telling her she better get used to getting her picture taken, it will be happening frequently as long as I'm around. Here are a few of my favorites from this session. (taken by Amanda Sampeer -

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Dru's 4th Birthday!

Birthday girl with her Dora & Diego cake

Bowling at Cedarvale Lanes (her first time)

She loved every minute!!

Trying on some of her Princess attire she got as a gift

We celebrated Dru's 4th birthday by going bowling with the family. She and Leo did fantastic with the ramp and were very patient while waiting for their turn to come around again. Dru loves being the center of the attention and enjoyed having her aunt, uncles, cousins and one set of grandparents there to celebrate. We find it amazing that we have a 4 year old. And even more amazing is how much we love this energetic, smart, funny, independent, brave, beautiful girl. Happy birthday, babe!

Reed is Six!

My nephew, Reed, turned 6 in November. I still can't believe he's already in kindergarten! We were so glad to be able celebrate with him. Happy Birthday, Reed! We love you!!!!!

Halloween 2011

Our pumpkins :)

Leo wouldn't wear his costume

Trick or Treat!

I did finally get him to wear the lion "head"
Dru and Leo both picked out their cosutmes and Leo refused to wear his. Go figure! Dru was a ladybug again this year which was great because it is an easy costume and we already had it :). It was chilly night but thank goodness no snow. We had our traditional homemade soup at my parent's house then went out trick or treating to about 15 houses. Dru didn't try to get into people's houses this time and did seem to understand the whole concept. I really think her favorite part is passing out candy to the other kids when we get back. She even was commenting on their costumes. She's so funny!

Olesen Cousins

The most recent picture of the Olesen cousins
Kara, Heidi, Chris, Amy, Jen, Hailey and Heather
(not pictured: Beth, Laura, Mariah)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Texas Wedding

Here are a few photos from the Moberly/Collins wedding, October 15, 2011. We were lucky to be able to witness this lovely ceremony. We really appreciated the short service so the kids were able to behave and not cause a rukus. It was sunny and warm, and we were in the shade of the golf course near the club house. Amy looked stunning and as we discussed the kids' favorite parts of our trip Dru said she liked Amy's sparkly dress the best. As for me, I said I loved seeing how truly happy Amy was and is. It makes me tear up just thinking about it. Congrats to you, Amy & Jeff!

The arrival of the bride, with her brother, Christopher

Maid of Honor, Jen, the bride's sister


The Kiss

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Trinity Park Train

We traveled together to Texas in mid October for my cousin Amy's wedding. We had some free time to do some things with the kids. We convinced Grandma Sue, Grandma Lois, Heather and Reed to go to Trinity Park in Ft. Worth with us. There we took a ride on the Forest Park Miniature Train. The train was driven by a small locomotive and had open seating. The ride took us along the Trinity River, over and under bridges and took about 40 minutes. It was a beautiful day and was a great way to see some more of Ft. Worth and the kids really enjoyed it.

At The Park

A quick trip to the park near my parent's house

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Mr. Giggles

Leo giggling on our drive home from St. Cloud

Millner Heritage Vineyard & Winery

My parents, sister, brother-in-law, Julie and I have started a tradition of doing things for Christmas instead of giving things. On a sunny fall Sunday Heather and Jason surprised us by taking all of us to the Millner Heritage Vineyard & Winery. There was wine tastings, food, dancing, grape stomping, wood workers, vendors and more. My parents talked the owner, Jon Millner, and discussed their heritage for awhile. It was a fun time and if you're ever out in central MN you should stop in!

My wine choices following a few tastings

Jon Millner (in front) getting ready for the grape stomping

The kids got a slice of wood with a face from a man using a chainsaw

Gma & Gpa with their Gkids

The kids watching the Scandinavian dancers

Big Sis, Lil' Bro

Gotta love the smiles at bedtime.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Visit to the Apple Orchard

We went to Deardorff Apple Orchard in Waconia again this year. I was hoping to avoid any hay/stray/corn. Unfortunately they added a huge straw pile for the kids to play on. We did keep the kids off of it so it didn't cause Leo any problems. This is a pick your own orchard which we really enjoy, so we took home some Honey Crisp and Haralson apples. I also bought some pumpkin butter which is quite good (it's like apple butter). It is one of my favorite events of the whole year and I know the kids really have a great time! We may have to pick a new one to try next year.

Dru in the pumpkin patch

Still amazed they had a fire going at the orchard

On the wagon waiting to get a ride to the apple orchard

Look Mom, I picked another one!
Me with the kids who don't cooperate for photos 

Sunday, October 9, 2011

MN State Fair

Opening day without the kids

My Jude

Leo's favorite ride

Dru's favorite ride

Pretty girl with her painted face
We were able to get to the fair twice this year. We went on opening day without the kids and had a great time that included the beer garden! Then on the first Sunday we took the kids. It was nice to be able to do the things they wanted to do like the kid rides, giant slide and face painting because we had done what we wanted a few days before. This might be the way to go in the years to come. We love taking in all the food, fun and people watching each year.