Tag Archives: rachel

Sound of Music Sing-A-Long

Saturday, 5/18/13 Bruce and I took Lydia and Rachel to the SOUND OF MUSIC sing-a-long at the Ordway in St. Paul.  I had bought the tickets in June 2012! So we waited a long time!  We went to Cossetta’s for dinner and stopped for dessert and each of us girls got a scoop of gelato. Rachel’s was chocolate and tasted like cold thick uncooked brownie mix!  It was delicious and she made a mess!! Of course, we were walking and eating at the same time!  And Rachel was walking with her right foot turned out…wearing too small of shoes earlier in the week.  I hope it gets better, or Rachel was faking, because she looked like she was going to need a leg brace!

The sing a long consisted of the original movie playing on the VERY HUGE screen.  The words to all the songs showed on the screen (karaoke style, with the word highlighted as it is sung).

When we arrived at the Ordway, we were each given a little yellow goodie bag that had lots of props in it. Before the movie started, an emcee had us warm up singing, explained to us what we should do, and when…

When you see the hills in the background of the movie – we are to yell “the hills, the hills” or “the fjords, the fjords”, just because it is fun to say.

When you see:

Maria, we are supposed to CHEER!

Rolph, bark like a dog

Baroness, snarl like a cat


The props that we got:

Cards with ? and a picture of Maria – use alternating cards during “how do you solve a problem like Maria?”

We got cards with a funny word and a….i didn’t know what it was…it is a “will-o’the wisp”

How do you solve a problem like Maria?
How do you catch a cloud and pin it down?
How do you find a word that means Maria?
A flibbertijibbet! A will-o’-the wisp! A clown!

A piece of floral fabric – when Maria is asking the captain for fabric to make the children some play clothes, we are to hold the piece of  fabric up and yell “look behind you, look behind you” to direct Maria’s attention to the curtains!

We each got a small bunch of white silk flowers, edelweiss.  When he sang that song, we were to hold the flower over our head and sway back and forth.

We also got a “popper” that when we pull the string, confetti flew out.  We were to pull that cord DURING Maria and Captain’s first kiss.  Not before, not after….DURING the kiss.  I was so afraid Rachel was going to do hers early.  I think she held on to it the whole time, and she would lean over to me and say “I really want to pull this string!”

During the chase, at the end of the movie, everyone was encouraged to use a flashlight or an app as a flashlight on their phone and shine them around the room, not on the screen, to make it look like the flashlights searching for the family.

Many, many people were dressed up in costumes….they had a costume contest during intermission. Many nuns, many with floral play clothes, some whiskers on kittens, some brown paper packages tied with string, a whole group of 18 women were dressed as goats. One family – the mom was dressed as a nun, dad was tall and handsome and dressed as the captain, their 5 kids had matching “sailor” type tops on.  When the dad blew the whistle, each kid jumped into line.  The lady who won was dressed as the baroness.  She had on the red outfit with the blouse with huge bow at the hip. One very little girl was dressed up and had a little sheep puppet like they had in the movie.

Bruce forgot his credit card at cossetta’s, and somehow remembered during the movie.  He left and walked back to Cossetta’s and they had the card in the safe for him.  He came back to the Ordway, had a drink, and then joined us back in the theatre.  We left the theatre at 10:20 p.m. The girls fell asleep very soon after we were on our way to drop them off.

It was a really fun evening, experience.  The whole thing was very fun.  Very worthwhile, and worth the $26 per ticket.


The State Capitals Test

The girls had been practicing all summer for their state capital test.  Grandpa challenged them to learn the capitals for each of the 50 states.  He would give them $1.00 for each one they got correct at the end of the summer.  The day of the test arrived.  Both girls were nervous, or at least were pretending to be!

I was asked by the girls to monitor so no one cheated.  They also wanted to be tested separately. Dad and I were in the office with each one.  They both did awesome!!  You can see how they did in the photos below!

The State Capitals Test, 2012

The State Capitals Test, 2012

Our Friday Field Trip – Adopt a Hen

Friday, I took a half-day off work.  We had an appointment at 1:00 with Matthew Willenbring, to adopt a hen.  We were going on a field trip!!

The girls were already throwing around names they thought would be good for a hen!  We explained that the adoption process was a little different, in that the hen is  going to stay at the farm with all her sisters; but we can visit any time we want.

We got out to the farm, and Matthew was right there to greet us.  He brought us around took a look around at all the chickens roaming around behind the little white fence.  Matthew has 300+ hens, and they are pasture-raised…so they eat grass, insects, plus a very nutritious blend of
ingredients that Matthew grids up for them. Most of those ingredients too, are grown right there on the farm.

He had three hens separated in a smaller fenced in area.  Those 3 were available for adoption today.  Matthew kneeled down and picked up one of the  hens. We all got to pet the hen – who knew it would be like the softest kitty fur?  The girls each got in the fenced in area and started checking out the feathered girls.

Matthew shared so much information with us about the hens.  Do you know what the comb and waddle are for?  It acts as a radiator to draw the heat away from them, and keep them cool.  Did you know that chicken’s have tongues?  Yep, it looks like a little triangle inside their mouth.  Their eyelids go from the bottom up, opposite of ours.  They each have over 8,000 feathers!  He is so knowledgeable about the species, And so kind and patient, he was fantastic with the kids!  Did you know that the shell of the egg isn’t formed until the last day.  I could only
hope to recall a small portion of the info he told us about cholesterol, LDL and HDL, it was like speaking with a scientist.  Bottom line – these eggs are actually REALLY good for you!

For the price of the adoption ($36) Matthew gives you a punch card for 12 dozen eggs, to pick up whenever you want, and however often you would like.  You can pick up a dozen farm fresh eggs and visit you hen! Did you know that eggs will last for 5 weeks in the refrigerator?  They should be stored point-side down.  There is an air-pocket on the rounder end of the egg, keeping that side up helps in keeping them fresh.

Lydia and Rachel each named their hen.  Lydia’s is Lexis Jeanne and Rachel named her’s Hailey Lynn.  Matthew took a photo of each of the girls with their hen.  And soon they will get  an adoption certificate in the mail.

We decided to take home 2 dozen eggs, so we went in the farm house for the next stop on this fabulous adventure.  The girls needed to help Matthew candle and sort the eggs he had gathered this morning. They got to see each egg go over the spot where the light illuminated
the shell and you could then see if there were any cracks or imperfections in the shell.  Then the eggs get sorted into size by their weight; the girls then put them in the cartons.  They just marveled at the stacks and stacks of empty egg cartons he had!

Next stop, milking cows! There again, we learned the process of how the cows get milked, what temperature the milk comes out at, and just a bunch of other cool things.  He makes it all so interesting, the girls were having a great time!  My favorite fact: the cows go out to
pasture two times a day.  When they return to the barn, they always go back to the same exact stanchion, EVERY. TIME.  There is no fighting about who gets to park where; each one has its own spot and always returns to it.  Looking into the bulk tank of fresh milk, waiting for the milkman to come and pick it up and transport it to the next step in the milk-making process, WOW, that was neat.  The look on Rachel’s face says it all!


On to giving the baby calves water.  These little things are sooo cute!  They really latch on to the bottle.  It was funny because the calf that my dad was giving water to must have been taking her old sweet time, because we moved on without him!  We got to see calves (twins actually, which is rare and very difficult for the mama) that were two days old.

I mentioned to Matthew that the girls were not sure they wanted to have chicken for dinner tonight.  He so beautifully explained the cycle of life;  Before leaving to go home for happy hour, we had to go say goodbye to our newly adopted kin.During our visit to the farm, each one of the girls told me how much fun they were having.  Last night, after a wonderful, fun filled day, when I was tucking in the girls and kissing them goodnight, they each thanked me for taking them there and for getting them each their own hen!  They really had a wonderful time; I would highly recommend going out to adopt a hen, and meet Matthew.

Every hen needs a home…adopt a hen!

Farm Address – 25113 Co Rd 50 ~Cold Spring MN 56320 ~250.1624



SIDE NOTE:  I made  French toast with the eggs this morning, the yolks are nearly orange!  Like little sun shines.  I am anxious to try them scrambled!

Model Shoot

When I got home from work on Thursday, the girls were waiting for me.  Let me expound on that a bit…i drove around the back side of the house first, and everyone was out on the patio.  They all waved, and the girls were jumping up and down.  I drove around to the front of the house and pulled in the front driveway.  I could barely get far enough into the drive way to be clearing the street…before I was bombarded with hugs and kisses.  They where jumping up and down and could hardly wait to see me…you can’t get a much better greeting than that!

After I was able to escape my car and make my way into the house, the girls announced that we were going to play dress up, and they didn’t bring any dress up dresses, so they would have to wear mine, as well as my shoes!  So away we went.  I don’t remember which one said it, but one of them said, susie can take pictures of the model shoot.

We had a blast, them looking for dresses to wear, and me finding enough safety pins to hold the dresses on!  After dinner, Lydia asked if we could curl her hair, so she could pretend to be Taylor Swift. 

We used my hot rollers, so it didn’t work so well with Rachel’s new, shorter hair do.  Believe me, now that i know that they think this is “so awesome”….i will be planning many more shoots, i may have to pick up a few things, just for playing dress up/model shoot with them!  More boots…definetly more boots!

Shopping Spree for Rachel

Because I knew we were getting Lydia an ipod touch for Christmas, we had to do something extra special for Rachel so she wouldn’t feel left out.

Bruce and I picked her up Saturday, 12/10 and we went to Maple Grove area to do some NEW CLOTHES shopping. Being the youngest girl (older sister and 2 older girl cousins) Rachel doesn’t get much new – mostly hand me downs and we wanted her get new clothes that she picked out.

We shopped first at Old Navy. As soon as we walked into the store, sweet little Rachel said “my mom would really love a vest!” I had to explain that we were shopping for HER. She was pretty reluctant to commit to any of the things we looked at until I said to her “you better start selecting things, or you will end up with NOTHING!” She said we could put everything in the cart that she likes and then she would go through it at the end and pick what she REALLY wanted. I left the store with Rachel, and Uncle Bruce purchased everything that was in our cart!

I looked at the GPS to see what other stores were in the area and I found a listing for TWEEN BRANDS. Never heard of it…but figured we should check it out. Turns out it was the Justice store! Rachel was delighted! As soon as we walked in the front door, a sales girl said “Hi, who are you shopping for today?” I said Rachel. She said “Rachel, what is your favorite color?” PINK… “should I find you a cute outfit with pink?” SURE… Rachel got so much attention in the dressing room – and the sales girl treated her like a VIP, which was awesome.

We had lunch at Arby’s and then back to Sandy’s. When Lydia got home from her hockey game and she asked Rachel…”where did you go shopping?” When Rachel said JUSTICE, Lydia was really bummed. I explained to her that we had already purchased her Christmas gift, but if she didn’t like it, I would return it and buy her ANYTHING SHE WANTS FROM JUSTICE! She was fine after that, until Christmas Eve when she say Rachel’s huge stack of presents from us.