21 April 2017
Coloring Easter eggs! It's everyone (but Brian's) favorite. Stuck traditional, but maybe next year we'll experiment with something.
Easter morning and never too old for the Easter bunny.
Spent Easter with Grandma Joan, and a delicious brunch at Lake Park Bistro.
She's so cute when she's sleepy.
Gymnastics (especially upside down ones) are definitely not my thing -- but one of these days, I WILL touch that wall with my nose. I've been crossfitting nearly three years now, and lost a bunch of weight since October of this past year. Slow but steady, and it's paying off. I feel incredible, and am gaining confidence to try things I never thought I'd do before. I always said I'd never get a pull-up. Guess what? This past week, I did 4 strict unbroken. It feels awesome.
My friend Yvonne send me this photo from Brian and I at a wedding in New York, circa 1998. I love it! Brian's first comment was how he can't believe he is wearing pleats! He said he never wore pleats. Ha.
Obsessed with flowering trees.
Had a Madrid reunion with some of my gal pals from the Spain soccer trip. We ate dinner at .... Hotel Madrid! I had a great dinner of peppers, octopus, salad and barramundi. Plus we shared dessert, of course. Felt good to be away from the soccer field and out and about.
16 April 2017
Can't believe Easter is here. No big plans this weekend, but it's been great. The weather is gorgeous. Spring tends to not be my favorite, but everything is turning green, flowers/trees/plants are blooming -- and even though we get to see this every year living in the Midwest, it's still always kind of magical.
We decorated eggs on Saturday. The boys and I love it. Maybe next year we'll try natural dies (I say this to myself every year -- need to make it happen). Naturally, Easter morning was spent Easter egg hunting and chocolate eating. We've hosted Easter the last couple of years, but with much of our family out of town this year, decided to keep it simple and go out for brunch this year. It was strange not having everyone around, but kind of nice to have a low-key holiday. Joan came and we stopped over at Scott & Ali's before heading over to Lake Park Bistro for brunch. I was so excited! We scored with a table overlooking the lake. The boys both finished their steak & frites. I had the cheese plate, salade niçoise and pavlova with lemon sorbet and berries. Oh, and a mimosa and some of the boys fries. It was absolutely delicious. Such a perfect afternoon.
14 April 2017
It's dog week according to my photos. Gretel celebrated her 3rd birthday while we were on our vacations. She's just as crazy as ever.
She's also quite ridiculous. Snuggles with H.
And we can't forget about this guy. 10.5 years old and doing great. He doesn't demand as much attention. Plus, hates getting his photo taken. It's really quite hilarious. Such a handsome guy though.
07 April 2017
Me and my handsome dinner date the night we went to La Gloria de Montera.
A great last day in Spain exploring Segovia. This may be my favorite photo from the entire trip. Shot from the castle.
Gran Vía (where our hotel was located) was closed off to cars due to a protest at the end of the street. It was pretty crazy seeing such a busy street full of people. We ran out and took advantage of it ourselves. Here's part of the mom group -- and one of the Spanish guides. So happy to have gotten to meet new people and get to know some of the others better.
Ok, this is crazy....H turned 15 right when we got back. I cannot even believe it. We celebrated a day early with steak, french fries, Greek salad and a Chocoflan cake due to Brian traveling on H's actual birthday. Still can't believe that this guy is 15. Love him so much!!!!
Fighting off jet lag with a little afternoon coffee in my new cup Brian brought back from Mexico. He and H spent Spring Break in Playa del Carmen and with our friends The Frigs in Puerto Morelos. Now, I just need to work on getting some of those photographs from Brian.
C's soccer team had a State Cup play-in game on Thursday. They won 8-0, and C played incredible -- scoring within a minute of being put in. He doesn't always get a ton of play time, but absolutely killed it tonight. It was so fun to watch. There were beautiful skies and it was freezing out. Unfortunately, as I was leaving the parking lot, I turned into a concrete light post and the side of my car is really dented. So dumb. I can't stop thinking about it. As always, it could have been worse, but ugh.
06 April 2017
Our final day in Spain. Can't believe how quickly it went by. Today there was no soccer. Instead, we went to Segovia -- another really incredible town. What Segovia is known for is the ancient aqueduct, dating back to the 1st of early 2nd century, and suckling pig. We took a little walking tour, which ended at the Alcázar of Segovia. Since we were there, a group of us decided to tour it and I'm so glad we did. For lunch, my friend, her son, C and I broke away and decided to have a nice lunch. We ended up at Restaurante Jose, where the boys had Grilled Monkfish, my friend had lamb chops, and I tried out the suckling pig. Not something I would typically eat, but when in Segovia! And yes, it was amazing.
That afternoon once we were back in Madrid, we packed up then headed out to try to find C a hoodie. The streets and stores were insane though, so the only thing we bought was a bubble tea at C's favorite place -- Wowble. So good. That evening was a farewell dinner at the hotel. All of us laid low and just hung out in the hotel lobby before calling it a night.
We were up early the next morning to go to the airport. Unfortunately, we didn't have a direct flight either way, which made for a long day. Greeting us at the airport though, were H & Brian, who had a great time in Mexico while we were away. I think we were all sad to see our vacations come to an end, but being reunited as a family felt really good.
05 April 2017
Good news. Was feeling much better this day. Thank goodness. Today we went to Real Madrid City and got to see where the boys have been training. Security was very tight -- probably because the 1st team was actually training there that day. Kind of exciting. We even saw a glimpse of a player (C would know -- I can't remember). Lunch was supposed to be at the facility, but a group of us took a cab back to the hotel instead. I was lucky enough to run into some of the parents of the girls who came on the trip (our schedules were often quite different) and went out for a typical tapas lunch with them. All we did was order beer & wine, and next thing you know, we had jamón, manchego. Spanish tortilla, croquetas and patatas bravas. Seriously, all of that cost only 20 Euros. Good stuff.
After lunch, I stopped in the grocery store to pick up some chocolate, then a couple of us walked to the Royal Palace. Second time was a charm, thank goodness. Definitely an interesting place to visit. Considering I didn't make it to any other of the famous museums there, I'm so glad I made it here. Unfortunately you couldn't take photos. It was so over the top, and absolutely fabulous.
That evening, C and I decided to go on a date. He had been really looking forward to it and was bummed he couldn't join us for dinner the night before, so we went back to La Gloria de Montera. It was perfect and he ate a ton! I'm pretty sure it was his favorite dinner of the entire trip. We had 5 different plates, plus 2 desserts. Such a fun night. After we came back, I met up with the parents at the gin bar across the street for a couple cocktails. Not a super late night, but definitely later than usual. Such a fun day.
Unfortunately, I hadn't been feeling 100% during the entire trip. For the most part, I was able to power through (ibuprofen and wine helped), but it seems today was the day it caught up to me. In hindsight, I probably should have stayed behind and slept all day. But I was really excited for the day. It started with a visit to the Spanish National Team Complex. As the parents had coffee, the players trained. Afterwards, we toured the museum, which was a really neat place. For lunch, C and I went back to the Mercado de San Miguel to try some food items we missed on our first visit. And eat more burrata, of course. Oh my gosh, that stuff is so good!!! We even saved room and stopped at a bakery on the way back to the hotel, where we rested before traveling to the last soccer game. The game ended with a score of 1-3, but again, it was a great match. After we came back to the hotel, C had the team dinner, and I met up with a group at La Gloria de Montera. It was absolutely delicious, but unfortunately, I was feeling pretty awful and had to bail early. I came back to the hotel, ordered some hot tea and went to bed with a fever. :(