So what have we been up to? (a 7QT post in pictures)

So what have we been up to, this middle-of-August, as summer break winds down and school begins?


On Friday, we had our final field trip of the summer, with some friends: a trip to the Capitol museum…

Capitol Steps

Capitol Dress-up

(why yes, I know my toddler picked out a prairie girl dress)…

and of course, the iconic ice cream shop in the state capital:

Central Dairy

Yes, you did count that correctly. There are seven children in that booth. They would not split into two groups, so the kids’ mommies (and Miss K’s baby) got to have the neighboring booth to ourselves.

You should have seen the looks on the other customers’ faces as they walked by.


On Saturday, these two kids had a birthday party:



No, I didn’t make this cake. I’m not that good.

We called it our “40 and a half” party, because Christian turned 41 a few weeks ago and my 40th is next week.

Wait–did you ask why do we look wet? Well, that would be because we got 2 inches of rain in the first hour of the outdoor party.


It was only sprinkling when I took this one. But after we ran tables up and down the hill and the kids gave up and went inside, the rain did stop, so we just had a wet, soggy party. And Julianna?

Blog Julianna-baby

A baby? Heaven. Her day is made. Actually, there were three babies at the party over the course of it.


Monday we did a Farewell to Summer trip to the lake with friends.

Blog-splashing 1

Blog-splashing 2

Blog-sweet boys

The other kids were there, they just weren’t quite so photogenic. Besides….


….Tuesday was Julianna’s first day of school….

Blog-J first day


….and Wednesday was Nicholas’s first day of kindergarten!



No tears for this kid. He didn’t even look nervous. And after school, when the carpool dropped him off, he literally ran into the house and shouted, “I LOVED IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”


So what am I doing with aaaaaaallll that free time, now that I only have ONE child at home?

Hold your horses. This kid is used to having a ruckus around. He’s so, so bored. He climbed all over me for seven hours straight. I got so fed up I let him drive the van.

blog-michael driver

Just kidding.


I spent my kids’ first day working on my novel opening for the finalist round of Rising Star, which was due by the end of the day. And today (Thursday) I’m trying to catch up on the nonfiction work that had to be set aside while I was on that deadline, and which is now coming up on its own deadline.

7 quick takes sm1 7 Quick Takes about a special vintage dress, a hiphop wedding, and that moment when all your cards are declined at Wal Mart