Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Ten (Photos) on Tuesday

I have a few random photos documenting a few outings the past two weeks. We have started our spring climbing season so to kick things off, we headed to Kentucky for President's Day Weekend. It was awesome to be back at our cabin. It just feels like home and we love it so much. The kids were super excited too and the climbing was beautiful.
Axel sleeping. He loves his naps!
We did have to shorten our stay due to a winter storm warning. It was going to be a one day storm with heavy wet snow. The potential to get stuck at our cabin was high due to it's location in a small valley.

We opted to head south to Knoxville to see friends and climb at Little River Canyon for some steep, juggy routes. We missed most of the snow. We took a little detour to go see Cumberland Falls State Park, little did we know that it would be snowing back on the interstate!
No photos of the waterfall. It was way to rainy to get out the camera until we were back at the visitors center. Both boys were obsessed with the light map.
It's a pretty impressive waterfall but it was so rainy. Good thing we didn't stay long! We ran into a full blown snow storm in the mountains of southern Kentucky and northern Tennessee. It was white knuckle driving for all of 15 minutes but disturbing none-the-less. We were happy to be in Knoxville. :)
Our next outing was at Little River Canyon...our new home crag. We are really starting to like this place. The approaches are easy, the cliffs are beautiful and there's more climbing than we thought. It's steep! I've had to learn yet another new style of climbing. I'll be a well rounded climber if we ever head back west. :)
Mike's season is off to an awesome start. He was able to climb a 5.13d in just two days! It's short but packs a punch! It climbs up the thin features on the furthes left climb near that big crack although that crack is not used. :)
He also onsighted some harder 13's and is pleased with his progress. I to am making gains. One year ago I probably wouldn't even try have the climbs I'm now leading. Some are so steep (like horizontal roofs) so it's been a learning experience for me too. My brain has been great and I'm finally able to really relax on the climbs and focus on the rock! So fun!
The boys love the new area and have been playing together so well. Lucas is a Ben Ten addictic these days so of course, Axel is too. They play Ben Ten most of the day....Ben Ten is a super hero who can change into various characters to fight the aliens.
Just a look at the cliff and big trees. It's a cute little canyon!
And then this photo, it makes me smile! Axel loves to wear bowls on his head as if they were hats. Here he is playing Legos with his new hat and awesome smile!

Monday, February 27, 2012


Here is a photo of the front of our house here in Florida. The pine trees are amazing but the pine needles are super annoying. They require constant raking and you can see they are used like mulch. Numerous green bushes also make up our landscape and this winter/early spring they shared their secret.
Color explosion! Our dull yard has come to life and is showing signs that spring is just around the corner. Each week more of the bushes bloom and it's not just at our house. Reds, whites, pinks and purples are blooming all over the neighborhood. These gorgeous flowers are so cool and guess what? They required no gardening knowledge or effort! :)
They make me smile everyday!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Two Minute Nuggles

Axel has always been my little cuddle/snuggle bug. I love it! However, now he's using it to get out of bed every night. It's super cute (at first). I tuck in the boys and about 5 minutes later, we hear the door open. Then we hear little foot steps and then we see a hand and finally a little boy covering both eyes walking into the living room. He's super silent until he gets right next to us when we hear, "Can we do two minute nuggles?!" This is accompanied with an adorable smile!

Of course, I'm a huge sucker for this manipulation and always give in. After a few snuggles, we head back to bed.

Then we get out to go potty.

Then we get out for water.

Then we get out to "tell you something."

Then we get out for whatever reason we can think of.

Then the cuteness wears off.

Then we get annoyed.

Then the threat of sleeping outside in the dark by yourself or in your bedroom with Lucas usually puts an end to it.

Why oh why can't we just have two minute nuggles and then go to sleep?

To be a parent....


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day - 2012

I love, LoVe, LOVE to make sugar cookies. I've perfected my all-butter recipe over the years and now I've found the perfect frosting that makes them delightful! So, any excuse to make them and I'm all about it. This year, Lucas wanted to make green hearts for his class. Green is his favorite color and this is how they turned out...
We used good old fashioned ziplock bags to protect each one.
They wouldn't be complete without actual Valetines card stapled to each. Lucas wrote out each name and signed every card. I was very proud and happy I didn't have to do it. :)
Valetine's Treats were set out the night before.
The Valentine's Day Loot consisted of a chocolate rose, Cars mug, pencils with BIG erasers, chocolate/yogart covered pretzels with sprinkles, math flash cards, hot chocolate on a stick, marshmallows, Cars chocolate hearts and a few other little treats. That all mixed in with cards from our Grandparents made for a smile filled morning!
Mr. Lucas Danger...
Mr. Axel Adventure...
Happy Valentine's Day!
We love you! Have a wonderful day!

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Big Birthday

Birthdays around here are a pretty big deal and they like to start early and linger on. There's no one day and it's over for us, we milk it for all it's worth. :)
So, the day before Axel's real birthday, we made plans with his friends at the library park. (All our parks have various names like the Light House Park....the Farm Park...the Butterfly Park...etc. It helps keep things straight and everyone on the same page.) Anyways, I decided ice-cream cone cupcakes were in order but this year, with a little different topping. Meringue Puffs...I love them but they are not the greatest for little kids. They are super sweet so by the time the kids got down to the actual cupcake, they were about over it. However, that wasn't so bad for those of us moms willing to finish the uneaten leftovers. :) They are super cute and I think I would make them smaller next time and have them on the side as little treats. The day turned out beautiful. It was sunny and warm; Axel was besides himself. He loves the library park especially when his friends are there. His BFF got to spend the morning at his house. While Axel and Riley played, Mommy decorated the cupcakes and baked some tasty muffins to get ready for the big outing. Riley even got to ride with us to the park. This was going to be a good day.

We had lots of tasty snacks and tons of playground equipment to go around.
Playground equipment and WATER FOUNTAINS. It never fails that the non-toy items become the biggest hit. Once told to leave the water alone...
McCabe listened. The other two, in their usual fashion, kept testing the water to see if Mom was serious or not. Check out Axel, he just pretends he doesn't hear a thing! These two really are trouble but very, very cute trouble!
This was a happy birthday boy! I'm not sure what he is doing here but it's all happiness.
Then it was time for cupcakes!
The crew jumped in to help with present opening. Don't worry, everyone got to open and everyone got to take home something special.
There was still more playing and hanging out with his BFF.
Second round.
We have some great neighborhood kids so we had planned to take extra special cupcakes to the bus stop after school. The only problem? Axel was so tired he slept through the arrival of the bus. He was all tired out from his party. So, these cute little ones had to wait until bike/scooter time which is usually 4:30pm around here.
We delivered cupcakes around the neighborhood to all our friends and played along the way. Axel was the hit of the neighborhood.
Axel LOVES sunrises and sunsets. He knows just how special they are and always points them out. This one he called his "Special Birthday Sunset" and I think he's right.
It was beautiful and made him feel so very special.
After dinner we had one more cupcake to deliver. It was dark so he got his flashlight and we walked a few houses down to visit Braden. He loved this little dark adventure. It got even better when his friend surprised him with a birthday gift...a Lego Space Shuttle! Back at home, it didn't take two seconds to get Daddy excited to help put it together. Daddy is no sucker, he put Axel right to work and made him pull his weight. :)
Lucas dug out his Legos from his uncles so everyone had a Lego night.
We had to bust out the birthday decorations after the boys went to bed.
The next morning, Axel cried and cried when he saw his decorations. He sat on the floor and sobbed, "I just want to get out." Poor boy thought he was trapped in the hallway forever. I quickly explained that it was his REAL birthday and these were his very special birthday decorations! "Oh," he said as he busted through the wall.
He found three big balloons and a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY AXEL poster so he was able to give us this cute little, sleepy, teary-eyed smile.
It took about two minutes to realize that this was his day! He had Mickey Mouse pancakes with Lucas for breakfast and a special birthday lunch with Daddy & Mommy at the Boat House.
Mommy & Daddy celebrated with Grouper Tacos and Axel stuck to his traditional pizza. We were all happy to celebrate!
After school and Taekwondo, we headed to Fat Daddy's Arcade. We found out about Fat Daddy's when we first moved to Florida and were invited to our neighbors birthday party. From that day forward, Axel made up his mind that this is where birthday are celebrated!
We were pleasantly surprised by the quality of pizza and the lack of people but it wasn't about the food or the other people. It was about Axel and his birthday shirt hittin' the games. The back of his shirt says, "Today is My Birthday!"
Daddy helped out a little. :)
Lucas hit the 1000 tickets jackpot on his second game! He was ecstatic and could hardly contain himself. I sat by the machine for 15 minutes catching 1000 little yellow tickets!
It didn't take long before Axel his a jackpot of his own to win 250 tickets. We need to take these guys to Vegas!
Air hockey was a favorite. Axel giggled and giggled!
At the end of the evening, the pizza cook handed us a huge bag of ticket on top of the 1500 we won. He likes to play the games and gives way the tickets to random kiddos. Well, we ended up with 3000 tickets to cash in for prizes! Lucas picked out an Angry Birds stuffed animal and a Magic 8 Ball. Axel ended up with a gun launched glider and a pull string Zoom Helicopter. Everyone was all smiles!
We headed back home to eat cake and open gifts.
Check out those candles! I couldn't find the birthday candles so we went with some nice, sturdy, train appropriate, last minute, wonderful find candles. Phew! :)
Here he is...MR. AXEL ADVENTURE who is now 3 YEARS OLD! Really?! I still can't believe it.
Mmmm...cake! It turned out delicious! I had to make a dense cake so it would stand up. To do so, I used a box of Duncan Hines Devil Food Cake, 1 lg box Chocolate Instant Pudding, 4 eggs, 1/2 C. oil, 1 container of Greek yogurt, 1/2 C. chocolate chips and a little bit of water to make it so I could actually stir it. IT WAS THICK! I made a little cupcake to make sure it would work and it did! It took one hour to cook at 350 degrees but that sucker cooked...came out of the pan...stood up and tasted good! Damn, I'm good! :)
Lucas loves birthdays too (of course) and Axel's special day marks the half way point to Lucas next one.
We quickly moved on to the presents. Axel loves Legos and Cars and don't forget trains.
This cool light ball with 3D glasses turned out to be a hit too.
Lucas even ended up with a few Big brother birthday gifts. He was a great sport and such a great big brother to Lucas. Both boys have really started to grow close and enjoy spending time playing togther. It's so fun to see them grow up together.
What a night! What a day! What a week!
What a perfect birthday!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY AXEL!!! Love, Mommy, Daddy & Lucas

Above Photo: Downtown Portland Oregon Bike Ride

The Danger Zone needed a little update to include not only LUCAS DANGER, but also his little brother...AXEL ADVENTURE!

Welcome to our family blog now known as:

DANGER and ADVENTURE Around Every Corner!!