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No camera tricks here ~ hand over hand up, and holds the pike for a good 5-10sec.


Wandered about the Minnesota zoo on Sunday… Saw lions, tigers and Isabel snuggled Poo Bear.  Afterwards we walked over to the Weesner Family Amphitheater and saw the John Butler Trio where we got Tigger’s bounce back.


The big fella is anything but tough, so I figured he just had the doggy sniffles or something. Turns out a tick related fever has him feeling pretty blue ~ woof.


Sparkly and surprisingly difficult to remove… Went to work with a glittery peace sign on my arm 😐

photo bomb

Canadian wildfires left an odd haze in the sky behind the girls and Jack’s Beckham worthy catch.


$20 in gas station fireworks = priceless 4th fun with cousin Jack.

piano camp ~ update

It’s the last day of piano camp, and Isabel tells me that they’ll be doing a 5 student piano ensemble.  Sounds fun.

update:  Isabel’s piano teacher Emily thoughtfully placed a link to a video of the ensemble in the comments below.   Also, here’s a link to Emily playing a fun piece called “All of Me” by Jon Schmidt.

beach day

On rare occasions the sun comes out and temperatures creep past 70 degrees on the beaches of lake Superior.


rocks after Dad’s day dinner.



this is big

bigger than big.  The Stanley Dadley Cup!


The girls think the new trampoline lighting system is pretty awesome. The neighbors on the other hand may disagree… it’s 10:00pm, with two bouncing giggly girls still outside.

school’s out!

A week of field trips, movies, and field days rounds out what was an otherwise educational school year.


First the dog, now a supersize teddy bear. At least this one doesn’t shed.


A mother father duet of escalating reminders is generally required for Isabel to accomplish most tasks she deems not fun. So we had a little chat last night about a 10 year old’s responsibilities. She responded with a mostly silent “huff breath”, but about an hour later I found this…

Hopefully it’s a sign.


Middle school comes to a close in a couple of weeks, and tonight we celebrated some of Edison’s brightest at the  annual Honor’s Banquet.  Among the 150 6th graders, Grace was one of just 7 kids to earn a 4.0 grade point average.  With her smarts, discipline and dedication, I keep telling her…

“Oh, the places

you’ll go”

                                                                         Dr. Seuss


Spent the night on the deck and noted two sure signs of summer; a lone mosquito, and freshly pinked toes.


or maybe just an impressive 6th grade band.


The “ps. ;-)” in my previous post may have been a bit to subtle… Heres the real deal that should remove my name from the child protection officers list.

way easier

Been working on this for weeks… When I realized that a counterweight would make pulling the front wheel up  way easier.  The bags of dog food in the back helped a little, the steel barbell was better but kept falling off. Then Isabel showed up.  With her back there the big bike wheelie is a snap.

ps.  😉

terrible, horrible, no good…

Grace is at a hotel/water park birthday party sleepover. Isabel’s home, feeling left out, and she lost her boots, bumped her chin, bit her lip, and is having a terrible, horrible no good very bad night…. So we went for a walk. A stick put a brief skip in her step, but didn’t turn the frown upside down.


My weekend work schedule has kept me from a number of Isabel’s volleyball games, but got to watch yesterday and saw some serious improvement.

best of

Cayman favorites

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cayman clips

Major motion picture fun. Thanks for making it possible Molly, Dennis & Louise!


Lots to celebrate lately.  Just spent a week with the whole family on a tiny tropical paradise snorkeling, sunning and SCUBA diving.  Despite a bit of anxiety, Grace completed her SCUBA certification while we were there.
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