Saturday, June 20, 2015

Camping is Heaven for the Murphy Boys

I'll have to admit the rainy weekend did not allow me to share in the thoughts of heavenly bliss camping. Actually, for a parent of small children camping is so much work. Blake kept walking off and I'd have to keep a constant eye on him. Rarely did I get to just sit down and relax. Blake just couldn't understand why walking in the street or into other campsites was wrong. 

Matt did a great job at the campfire. All the food was amazing, despite the rain.

Have I mentioned rain? Yes, it flat out rained the night we got there. Not long after we set up camp it started raining. We took shelter in the canopy and when it was time to go to bed we found the rain fly did not do its job. There was puddles in our tent and rain was coming in from the walls on the floor. The small kids tent was dry so Matt and Aiden squished into a two man tent with Addie and Corbin.

I took Blake and his pack n play to the camper with mom and dad and I got the twin bunk. All seemed okay at first, but I had no blankets (Matt took them with him). I was freezing by morning. My bunk felt like a flat lawn chair.
But we were dry.

 The best part of our weekend was the bicycle ride. There were rain showers off and on all day but we did make a six mile bike ride and visit to the nature center.

This super hero doesn't take a day off. He is around on vacation or at home.

You raccoons look out Aiden is in town.

(so because of pictures like the one above and the ones at the Derby I have decided to get serious about a diet and workout plan. My neighbor has been letting me work out with her at the Y and I have lost 6 pounds so far. I am excited about getting rid of all those baby pounds.)

 Brown County is beautiful and a lot of fun. Hopefully we will not be rained out when we get to come back.

 Of course we had great fellow campers who shared their bunk and dry space.

 These Murphy's and their lips. I tell ya

For a moment of sanity and the look of "you better get me out of here" I was giving Matt we drove in town for dinner. This fun Pizzaria was the perfect spot for us. The chef brought out dough balls for each of the kids to play with while our food was being prepared.

All in all I'm glad we got to camp together, but rain and kids do pose a challenge. Each time I say this is the last time we camp with a baby and it is true Blake gets bigger every time. One day we will have four children that can play on their own, but for now I try to focus on how cute they are.

Blake looks just like his Peepaw. Mom calls him little Johnny

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Old Friends and New Friends at the Sheep Farm

Matt's old friends Brenda and Dennis called Matt to say they would be in town with their grandkids and could we all go out to the sheep farm together and make a day of it? Matt was so thrilled to be able to see such good friends, talk shop and swap stories and jumped at the chance to see them. 
Traveling from California to Indiana was quite the trip and such a treat for the Hogans to spend time with us. The kids clicked instantly. As you can see all three had a close friend. 

Mason and Corbin took off in the woods instantly and when we saw them they were playing hide and seek or Nerf guns. They kept the same pace and didn't miss a beat the whole day.

Aiden and Colton took turns playing with the big boys and doing things together. What boy doesn't like super heroes?

Julian and Adaline zipped off chatting and smiling. I think the big tire swing was a big hit.

I didn't realize that all the reports on the news about California fires would have left the Hogan's area so dry and brown. They kept talking about how green it was here and how nice to be out in the country and not on top of everyone with space between the houses. We are truly blessed.

The Murphy's were so kind to let us come show off their farm. They gave us the grand tour and even tried to let the kids into the pen with the burro and sheep but the animals were pretty jumpy with all of these new faces staring at them.
 Playing on the farm, looking for bugs, going to the creek with new friends is almost more than one Saturday can handle.

 Carolyn had made the most amazing Carmel corn that you have ever tasted in your life! Carolyn had made these farm goodie bags for each of the kids with bandannas, sheep cookies, caramel corn and even a wooden sheep with Wooly Knot Farms burned onto them. They were so darling. The Murphy's went way above and beyond to welcome our California friends.

 These new Hoosier sheep farmers are now ready to hit the trails.
Somehow I managed to not get any pics of the sheep or the adults but I'd say I got pics of the cutest part of our day. :)
It was so nice to meet Brenda's son Chad and his family. Everyone was wonderful and we had such a good day. I think the kids have new friends cross country now to be pen pals with and hopefully see again one day.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Oaks Day

One person described Oaks/Derby Day as the modern ballroom.
I would so agree.
This is one of the most surprisingly fun days I've had in a long time. The weather was gorgeous, friends were in good spirits and the crowd was fun.

 Hats are the rage, both on guys and gals. I have several of mostly women's hats. Amanda's was a favorite. Sporting our favorite color of blue. Beautiful.

Matt was most handsome. He has a fun story of buying clothes for our day out. Matt had taken some slacks out of his closet to hopefully use by picking out a sports coat and tie for our day. When the salesman asked when and where Matt had bought his slacks ... He stopped Matt abruptly when Matt said 19... Yes anything bought before 2000 would not due in this guys opinion. Mind you Matt was not intentionally going retro.
Amazingly, Donnie had this perfect hat to match which he suggested the morning of Oaks. I come into the dining room with my breakfast (Amanda treated us to brunch) and Matt has his hat. Fun

 I have to tell you if you ever get the privilege of going on an adventure with Amanda you are set. She is a great planner and looks ahead to every detail. Beginning with breakfast, Amanda packed snacks and they had scoped out this amazing parking spot. Yes, we are right across from Churchill Downs!!

Here are our seats:
Amanda had won a box from her work for the day. We were on the finish line right on the first level. The atmosphere was a buzz. Everyone was decked out and full of smiles. It was like walking into a secret realm a world I had never seen before.
I could not believe it when Amanda called and invited us to go to the Race with her! What a treat! Matt nor I had been to any part of Derby and we really had no idea what we had agreed to.
Here's your Dandy. Cisa and her husband (Donnie's old roommate) shared the box with us. This is the definition of a Derby Hat

 There were cigars on the move, drinks and food to be had in the Paddock.

We could not have asked for a better day. What a beautiful spring day.

Amanda and Donnie knew all the ropes. Not only had Amanda scoped out the details of bringing food, Donnie knew everything about the races.

                                                       Here's my gangster.

 You see Donnie, his mother and grandmother would come to the track every year around his birthday. So after about age nine he would come all dressed in his slacks and tie to the track. He knew what the program meant in its entirety.

 Matt and I were just mesmerized by the whole seen. The track and horses were so close. The betting and cheering were loud and fast. The women were all beautiful in hats and dresses.

 Amanda put it well, "There are lots of women who don't eat here, or drink their food."

To top all of this off, Donnie's close friend was there working as a host and he and his wife had this ear piece and sports coats on that allowed them into all the well to do spots. We were able to walk up to Millionaire Row.

and on to the deck by the Steeples....

 This is my favorite pic of the day.

 Here you see the Paddock. This is the common area we were able to meet up with Adam, Pam, Sara, David, Abbey, Olivia and Garrett. They had tickets to tier three but you were not able to go into a tier that you did not have a ticket to. Anyone with a walking ticket was in this area as well. I would not advise to go on this ticket. It was hot, in the full sun and with no seat.

 Despite his complaining of missing work.... and Melanie what are we going to do all day at the track? We both had a great time.

 Here with my Lily (Drink of the day at Oaks)
This chick and I go way back to that 19... year that Matt was forbidden to discuss. Amanda was one of my first college friends at IUS and while I don't see her as often as I would like we always jump right into our friendship as if a day had never passed between us.

 Friends forever and blonds together. What a fantastic day!

My favorite hats in the booth right in front of us.

 Did we cash in on Oaks? No. We made two bets that day. And while we picked I'm a chatterbox to place we did not get a winning as she got third. This year a record 123,763 fans showed up to watch the Oaks at Churchill.It was cool that we could be counted in this number. Thanks Edlins