Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Plum Island - A Well Kept Secret!

Last Sunday Rob and I found ourselves with just one child!  I recently read about trails on Plum Island, so we ventured over there to try them out.  It was amazing!  The views were spectacular.  The trails are entirely on boardwalks, it was so much fun!  I cannot wait to bring the boys back, I think they'll love it!  and once it gets warmer I am sure we can see much more wildlife.  We only saw one type of small bird while we were there.  I can't believe I haven't been here sooner!  The last (and only) time I have been was during a field trip in middle school when we were studying tide pools!

When we arrived we had no children!  Or should I say one sleeping child.

We did the entire first loop with her asleep.

I loved this plant.. marsh grass?  I don't actually know what it is.

Here is the one type of bird that we saw

The whole way are these boardwalks.. I'm a sucker for them!  I find them so beautiful!  Can you imagine building them over the water?!  Very tricky.

On our way to the overlook... where Cora woke up!  We could hear birds, but we couldn't find them!

These berries were cool because they were under a thin layer of ice that was on the surface of the water

Cora needed a helping hand, she tends not to walk in a straight line and we were afraid we'd lose her over the edge!!

But she didn't really want to hold hands... she wanted to lead the way.. this is the Dune trail, not as exciting as the Marsh Trail.. but better exercise.. there were a ton of stairs!

A lookout point

With no water on either side it wasn't as risky for her to walk up ahead!

On our way to the observation tower... which I actually took no pictures from.

It was a beautiful sunny day, and very warm if you were sheltered from the wind.  Cora didn't want to go home!  I didn't blame her, the winter has been LONG!  It was great to take in the fresh air and sunshine!  Fun times ahead!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Sugar, Sugar!

Aside from 'Sugar, Sugar' being Rob's and my cake cutting song at our wedding, last weekend was annual Maple Sugaring Weekend!  This was our 2nd annual trip to a local sugar shack for their tour and yummy samplings!  I actually saw an ad for one in Chester, NH that we may check out next year for variety.

They have you try the sugar water that drips from the trees that they then boil down to make the syrup.  I must not have been paying attention last year, because I learned a lot more this year! 

I loved this barn opening!  There was patch of hay underneath it that was even better, but my "model" would have no part in it, so I had to trap her up in this doorway that was 5 feet off the ground instead!  If only I had grabbed her hat.. she loves wearing it down over her eyes! 

The next bucket step!  Where they strain the pre-thickened syrup and bring it to a more controlled heating setup to finish off the process... and that is when Cora told me she had to go potty, so she and I missed the rest of the tour AND the ice cream with the maple syrup on it!!  Rob was kind enough to giver his sample to Cora, and I sucked it up like a big girl and went without, there was only a small bit of resentment towards the children :) I do love my ice cream!  and a drizzle of maple syrup on top is also one of my favorites.. although, I do prefer the fake stuff.. butter flavored to boot!

Cora dressed up for the occasion! You can't tell me this girl isn't classy!

You can see the progression of our group picture.. my boys were bribed into it with the prospect of maple sugar candy!  They boys look forward to their maple leaf each year... I think that is the only thing Caden remembers from last years maple sugar weekend!


There!! All five faces seen by the camera, Smiles are not required!

We came home to discover the daffodils coming up!  Just a gentle reminder that the Christmas lights needed to come down!  We completed that task yesterday!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Signs that the Snow is Melting!

The good thing about getting to work at 5am one day last week, was that I got to come home early and enjoy a warm spring-like afternoon with the kids!

This year Cole has picked up riding his bike, last year he just liked to sit on it, with a few pushes here and there, this year while riding at a snails pace he can pretty much start and stop on his own... stopping by not pedaling anymore, not necessarily using the brakes.  It is very interesting that while in everyday life he is non-stop, get him on the bike and he isn't pedaling like a maniac like you'd expect, but a do-dee-do Eeyore mentality instead!  Kind of a nice change!

The kids just love their rain boots!

Keep your friends close, but your snacks closer :)

These two are becoming great buddies, thinking up games to play together.

Cora carries everything like a purse.. even a bucket of chalk!

You can tell Caden is ready for spring by his chalk drawings!

Check out that root system!  I do enjoy all of Caden's drawings he really gets the details!

The men-folk had already headed off to Boston for a hockey game... Kelly had the brilliant idea to meet at the park for dinner!  Pizza tastes even better at the playground!


So I probably should have been saving Cora, but her little legs kicking in the air were just too cute to resist!

Cora, while just 2 years old, can pretty much keep up with the big kids!  Apparently already a thrill seeker! check out this slide!  I cannot wait to ride roller coasters with her!  I thought my thrill rider would be Cole, but I am pretty sure I will now have 2 kids by my side!  Caden is still leery of the merry-go-round!

You'll notice most of my park pictures are of Cora.. that is because I couldn't keep up with the boys, nor do they need me to!  And while she thinks she's ready to rule the playground, Cora still needs a helping hand here and there!

Whooo!  These two didn't miss a single piece of equipment.  These two get along so well! 

Okay.. I didn't actually know what was going on here until after I'd taken these pictures.. while it did give me a chuckle Caden was spoken to about keeping his hands to himself.

These two enjoyed the see-saw...
Then I hopped on!  Here's my view!

Whoah!! too fast!!

Unfortunately there are only 4 seats on this.. hard to get a group shot of 5 kids! But it is okay, because no one wanted to look at me anyway.