by Kayte

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Today we said farewell to my beloved grandma. Farewell, but never forgotten. She lives on through all of us with our commitment to family, our love of giraffes, our frugal habits, our Chicago roots, our steadfast determination in the face of adversity. Family was the most important thing to her, and I feel so fortunate that her great-grandchildren had the opportunity to meet her, and that she had the chance to know them. She was one of our most avid blog-readers; embracing technology in her 90s; sitting through dial-up internet speeds waiting patiently for photos to load. She will be sorely missed, but she leaves a family full of love and dedication in her wake. Love you Grandma-in-Chicago.


1917 – 2015

Brookfield Zoo

by Kayte

For our free day in Chicago we decided to visit the Brookfield Zoo; a favorite family pastime. The weather was spotty, alternating between pouring rain and humid sun, but we managed a fun day visiting the animals. We spent a long time gazing at the giraffes, which were my grandma’s favorite; a love which has been passed down to Lola.






My dad brought a bunch of old photographs with him to Chicago, and I found this similar fountain pose among them. My brother and I with our Grandma and Grandpa at the Brookfield Zoo circa 1993 or so? Maybe my parents can weigh in on the date…


Brookfield Zoo circa 1993



by Kayte

This past February my grandma passed away at the admirable age of 97. Our family decided to wait for better (less snowy) weather to hold the memorial services, so we traveled to Chicago this May weekend to say goodbye. It was a bittersweet trip. Although the occasion was somber, we were all very happy to have our family together in one place. In a way it was fitting: my grandma has always been the focal point for family gatherings no matter how far-flung we have all become, and this weekend was no exception.

The kids were amazing travelers. I wasn’t quite sure how they would do now that they are both so mobile, but we were able to keep everyone happily distracted for the 4-1/2 hour direct flight. The trip was not easy by any means, but we sure had a lot less stuff than the first time the kids flew to Chicago two years ago. AND no one threw up on the plane (or elsewhere) this time!









Toddler Montage

by Kayte

They have been a handful lately…

…or actually, looking back on these pictures, MAX has been a handful lately.

Slow Teeth

by Kayte

Slowly but surely Max’s last molars are coming through. I just found #19 poking through this week, and judging by the large bump on his gum, #20 is not far behind.



Lola was excited to get in on the laying-in-the-grass-with-your-mouth-wide-open photo shoot:


Long Johns

by Kayte

Max has been wearing more big-boy pants lately (with buttons and zipper and stiffer material) so I have a stash of comfy PJ pants for him to wear when he’s napping. He doesn’t always get changed back to his real pants post-nap.


Rainy Day

by Kayte

We enjoyed some much-needed rain today. Max and Lola had fun jumping in puddles with their snow/rain boots. It quite possibly may be the second and last use those boots will ever get…


Worker Man

by Kayte

Imaginative play in our house has been exploding lately. It’s so cool to see them on-track developmentally. The games and scenarios they fabricate are amazing to watch. Most of Max’s scenarios revolve around gardening, construction, janitorial, pool cleaning – “worker man” things. Lola is either going to be a banker (“Want some money?”) or a cafe owner (“Want some hot coffee?”). I can’t wait to see what they come up with next.


Gardener pickup truck complete with mower, blower, broom and bucket


Texting on his “cell phone” (an old remote) while sitting in above-mentioned pickup truck (no texting and driving!)


Putting gas in the tricycle

Selling ice cream out of a shop window

Selling ice cream out of a shop window

Beach Day

by Kayte

I dressed the kids in their new birthday outfits from Auntie Karen and it inspired an impromptu visit to the ocean! They just looked so summery. Every time we go to the beach I wonder why we don’t do it more. Splashing in the waves is pure joy.




Gone Fishing

by Kayte

We FaceTimed with grandpa this evening and caught him in his kayak fishing on the lake. We watched him catch quite a few fish! Max finally decided he wanted to join in on the action.