Thursday, October 27, 2016


As I looked back through the photos we took in Cincinnati during the two weeks we were there visiting our kids and their babies in early October, one word kept coming to my mind.  


Cara and Tim are always so welcoming and always open to our visits.  The level of comfortable is second to none when we are with them.  We don’t take this for granted.  

We savor every moment ....

All the slobbery, teething, toddler kisses and hugs.  All the raspberries and little boy noises. All the little girl pretend play.  Every day.  All day.

Every diaper change.  Really.

Each trip to the potty with the two (and a half) year old (who often told me, “I will tell you”  -- as in, I will tell you when I have to go, because I don’t have to go now).

Every bedtime story with a sweet one year old little boy, then rocking him to sleep while giving him a bottle.

Each bedtime with Sydney -- we read, and she reads to us.  Prayers, songs, and her telling us, “you can lay down wif me for a minute if you want to.”  Absolutely we want to sweet girl!

The many pretend “grocery store” trips after writing our “lists” which always included avocados, bananas, eggies, juice, salad and milk.

Each time we were patients at the pretend dentist, and the pretend doctor.  
When we pretended we were Sydney’s “baby."
All the pretend sandwiches and pitas we made and ate at pretend picnics daily.

 The morning wake up after my sleepover with Sydney – seeing her sweet face as she slept, and soaking up the giggles and talk when she did wake up.  (I get to sleep with her!)

Outings to Target, Kroger, IKEA.

A date night with Sydney, NaNa, and PaPa to Chick Fil-A and Disney Store.

Best family restroom ever at the mall!  (kid size sink and potty!)
The rides on the school bus or car, for a buck, at the mall ... and the pure delight on their sweet faces.

Walks to the nearby playground, nearly every day, for balance beam practice, slides, climbing, bar swinging and running laps.

Cooking in the play kitchen and making music with the pots and pans!

 The laughter and fun at the indoor playground at a nearby church.

 The usual breakfast on PaPa's lap, and coffee with our sweet girl.

Watching Harrison be celebrated by family and friends and friends who are family, on his first birthday!

Talking about where the moon is each evening and walks outside at bedtime (in jammies) to see the moon with PaPa.

We also enjoyed a grown-up dinner out.  Skyline dinners with kiddos and Graeter’s ice cream!

Photo by Maria Lynn Photography

Being far from these kids and their babies is no joke.  
It is so dang hard. 

However, if it has to be, we are SO THANKFUL that we are welcome to visit, and have the means and the time to do so.

Tim & Cara .... from the bottom of our overflowing, mushy hearts .... we are forever grateful !

Tuesday, September 20, 2016


This morning was a typical Facetime call.  Sydney was eating breakfast.  Life cereal for her.  Coffee and Greek yogurt for me.  She was very excited to share that she was "dry" this morning.  We celebrated with high fives and hooray's over the internet.

Breakfast finished, Sydney "took me" to the living room.  She wanted to "play."
So we talked.  Told stories.  Took pretend pictures with her pretend camera (in her hand).  Talked about her baby and packed her baby diaper bag for their trip to the mall.

In a few days we will be doing all this in person.  We are all pretty excited.
Breakfast will most likely happen twice each day.  Once with her breakfast in her chair, and once on Papa's lap helping him eat his breakfast.

With 654 long miles between us and these kiddos I am so thankful for technology!
Even more thankful for her momma and dada who graciously call us several/many times a week to hang out with Sydney and Harrison.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Upstate New York

Early August was road trip time for some of our family to Upstate New York.
A journey back to the place we lived from 1981-1992.  Our three kiddos were born in Johnson City, NY.  Kirk started his career with IBM in Endicott, NY and we spent many, many weekends and weeks camping and visiting dear friends in Northville, NY in the Adirondack Mountains.
So many memories are tied to this state for our family and this is the log of our adventure!

Day One:  (316 miles)
Three of us (Kirk/Nate/I) started out on Friday with a stop/sleep in the Chicago area at my sister's home.  My sisters are the best letting us crash at their homes as we drive through town.

Day Two:  (384 miles)
Saturday morning we are on the road again -- heading to Cleveland, Ohio.  This is our meeting place with Cara, Sydney and Harrison.

We did pretty good on our meet up timing at the hotel in Cleveland.  We checked in, freshened up and took a nice walk to nearby Crocker Park for dinner at Cheesecake Factory.  
Uncle Nate likes to give gifts to his niece and nephew ... and rarely can wait very long to give them so Harrison got an early b'day gift -- a Twins shirt -- before heading to dinner :)

Our dinner ran a little later than we'd hoped so Cara and I booked it back to the hotel with the little ones to get them ready for bed while the the guys finished eating and paid up.  As promised, the men brought back some cheesecake for sharing!
Sydney made sure she got her fair share!

Harrison quickly took control of the air conditioning before bed ...

Little One loves her Papa -- and got a selfie in before heading to bed!

We  managed to score connecting hotel rooms which worked out perfectly!
Room #1:  Sydney and I in one bed.  Nate in the other.
Room #2:  Harrison in crib.  Cara in a bed.  Kirk in other bed.
It just "happened" that way everyone found a bed and went to sleep.

Day Three: (471 miles)
Breakfast in bed for this sleepy head! Then a long day in the car to Northville, NY!

But baby brother was up early and ready for play!

The Weinermobile was parked at a nearby hotel ... so photo ops happened!

The little ones were SO good during this long drive!

... and when the drive got too long for our littles, we pulled out the bag of fun ... which included lollipops!

Sydney caught quickly caught on to using a walkie-talkie ...

Getting out of the vehicle for lunch was a welcome break!  For all of us!

Next up ...  we arrive at the Cabinhaus!

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Blog Vibes

Hey ya'all!
I'm feeling the blog vibes again and I'm gearing up to start posting again soon.
This go 'round I'm considering making the blog private so you would have to register as a member to read the posts.

No final decision on this yet, but that's the direction I'm headed.

SO much has happened in the few years since I put my blog on pause.  It's so hard to start again after stopping -- I mean do I just pick up where I'm at or backpost ?  

Expect both.
Since the beginning, this blog has been a journal of sorts for me to log our family adventure.
I want to continue our story on the blog ... and catch it up!

Heading out on another adventure with our kiddos very soon.  
I'll try to keep you posted :)
Meanwhile ... let me know if you'd like to be a member.


Monday, November 02, 2015

And now there are four

We arrived in Cincy in time (Wednesday, September 23) to give a very expectant momma and daddy a little relief before baby #2 arrived, help where needed, and go to the park with a soon to be big sister!

Before baby arrived, we got in a few trips to the park and some wagon rides, dinner at Skyline, a (double) stroller put together and a toddler bedroom set up.

Then in the wee hours of the morning on September 25th Cara and Tim left their home for the last time as a family of 3, and parents of one.

Before Sydney, Papa and Nana had even had our breakfast.... 
Harrison Joseph Cappel 
arrived on the scene at 7:50 am
on Friday, September 25, 2015.
Exactly 17 months to the day that Sydney was born.

He weighed in at a whopping 10 pounds and 13.2 ounces, with a length of 21 inches!
(We grow 'em big in our family!)

Nicknamed "Moose" by one of the special care nursery nurses, our big/little guy spent a couple nights in the special care nursery while he worked on getting his blood sugars up.

 We visited the hospital twice a day -- before and after naps :)

 I think it was good for everybody!

  Sydney loved visiting momma and daddy

Nana and Papa got to visit and get to know Harrison

Sydney got to 
brush up on her stethoscope skills

and hitch a few rides through the corridors

This Papa and Nana are beyond grateful that these Cincy kids don't mind us hanging around when
babies arrive --- and always welcome our visits.
The time we are spend with them is so precious to us.