Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A Story About Water

Once upon a time, I had a leaky basement.  It was gross.  It made my whole house stink.  I hated it.

One day (last week), some magical people came over and made a big huge mess in the dirt in my yard.  But I didn't mind.

They were going to fix my leaky basement!  Yaaaay!

They started digging, and digging, and digging.

They found water.  Lots and lots of water.  When you dig next to a foundation, apparently you aren't supposed to find this much water just sitting there, wanting to get into your basement and stink up your house. 

This is a lot of water.  It just kept pouring in the trench that they dug.

So they pumped it out, put in a new drain tile system, some waterproofing on the foundation wall, and then pushed all the dirt back in.

It took them two days to do this work.  I was happy to have it fixed, but crabby about the money it was going to cost us.  Pretty crabby.

Then, last night, it began to rain.  It rained and rained.  The kids had a slip n slide in the front yard, with no $2.99 piece of plastic laying across the lawn.  They slid across the grass just as easily.  They had an absolute blast playing in the rain.

We went to bed a little nervous because we haven't yet had the topsoil delivered to cover all the clay/mud in the yard so we could plant grass seed.  We were afraid we'd wake to see something like this.  And we did.

Hopefully we didn't lose too much dirt into the neighbor's yard.  Sorry, neighbor.

I decided to go into work, even though my weather man told me I shouldn't.  They were reporting lots of water over many of the roads, and sinkholes were starting to form in places. 

I decided to head home early so I didn't get stuck downtown.  There was just so much water!

Quite a bit standing in our driveway - the ground was already so saturated, the water didn't have anywhere to go!

The gravel alongside the blacktop in another neighbor's driveway had washed away and formed a nice little waterfall.  Unfortunately all the gravel was now in the middle of the road.

Mysterious debris showed up in my front yard...

And cars zoomed by through the enormous puddle in front of my house TOO FAST!

And then the rain stopped.  Andy and I went for a walk in the neighborhood to check the level of our little trickling creek that is on our street.  The water was a little high.

I took the kids out to do a little gawking.

It was just unreal.  This is the stuff you see on the news.  Not something you see in your very own Target parking lot. 

I guess when life hands you lemons, you get your kayaks out and paddle around the parking lot?

This picture makes me so sad.  I can't imagine the amount of money it's going to take to rebuild this restaraunt and get it back open for business.

I have a hard time understanding why there are cars stuck in the middle of all of this water.  Did they really think they'd make it if they tried?

My Savers was in jeopardy too.  I sure hope they don't have to close!

Really?  What were you thinking people???

Derek and Emily had a bit of water on their road too...

But you know what?  I'm not crabby about that money I spent to have those magical people come and dig my yard up anymore.  My basement is bone dry, and I will sleep well tonight knowing that it will stay dry!  Someone was looking out for me and let that basement project take place less than one week before we got nearly 10 inches of rain.  I am counting my blessings, thanking my lucky stars, and saying a little prayer for everyone else here that doesn't have a dry basement!

I've never seen anything like this, and probably won't again in my lifetime.  I am thankful that it wasn't worse, and nobody has been severely injured.  To those of you that live here, please stay safe, and don't drive through the puddles!  Hoping all of your cleanups aren't too painful!

And we all lived happily ever after in our basement. 

The end.



Monday, June 18, 2012

Trout Lake Resort/Grand Marais Instagramed

I've been going to Grand Marais since I was just a wee one.  My mom grew up here, and my Aunt, with some of her kids still live here and run Trout Lake Resort, which my grandparents opened a long, long time ago.  This past weekend, I was able to spend some time here with my two BFFs and our families.

They really are the world's best donuts.  Don't take my word for it.  Go.  Kelly and Tricia and I got a few hours of time to head in to town without children to spend some grownup time.  Here are Kelly and Tricia acting super grown up.

Ok, this was a little more grown up.  Thank you Gunflint Tavern!

Look what I found!  I told Tricia I could smell it a mile away.  I was good though and didn't indulge at all.  This shop was full of the good stuff though, and I could have easily dropped a few hundo in there.

Back at the resort, our time was filled with eating (spaghetti, crab legs, grilled shark, grandma's German potato salad, the gorgeous fresh salad pictured above).  You are never hungry here, and there is always a place at the table for you.

The kids played The Chicago Bears version of Monopoly as I enjoyed my morning coffee.  I didn't once wish I was in Costa Rica instead of sitting right in this very spot.

We got to meet our new cousin, Anthony, who has bigger cheeks than Andy did when he was a baby!  I thought that was impossible!

The kids and I got to share cabin #2 for the first few nights until Nate was able to join us.  I love this cabin.  I look at each board and every window and wonder which ones my grandpa put into place with his own two hands so many years ago.  Small repairs are made here and there when needed, but most of the cabins are all original. 

No TVs.  No cell phones.  LOTS of birds and chipmunks and trees and fish and mosquitoes and giggling kids swimming and family and memories.

I wish we had more time to make it here more than once per year.

Thank you, to everyone at Trout Lake.  I love you and I miss you already.  See you soooon!



Monday, June 11, 2012

Do you want to know why I was in bed by 8:30 last night?

Here's what we did this weekend.  It was a little bit busy.

It started out on Friday with meeting the crew at Old Chicago for a quick dinner after work during a break from the dress rehearsal of the year end dance recital.  Spinach Artichoke Dip? Check.  Beer?  Check.  My BFFs?  Check.  Pictures?  Ooops.

So then we headed over to the DECC for the rest of the dress rehearsal.

Have I mentioned how much I love watching her dance?  There is no doubt in my mind that she's supposed to be right up on that stage performing her heart out.

The shriners let us borrow their almost life sized elephant as a stage decoration.  Soo cool!

Oh dear.  I can't describe the cuteness with the little ones.  This class danced to Never Smile at a Crocodile.  It sure brought back memories of Morgan's first recital.  She was dressed up as Minnie Mouse.  It feels like yesterday, but this was her 6th recital (I think).  Where does the time go?

She despised this costume.  Not so much the dress, but the fruit/flower situation she had going on on her head.  I think it looked cute, but I guess I can't blame her.  I probably wouldn't have wanted to wear it either.  She was a good sport about it though, and played the part.

This was my favorite dance of hers this year.  Morgan, I'm proud of you.  I love watching you dance.

Saturday morning we got up and tidied up the house a bit for houseguests, and then went to Andy's baseball game.  I didn't take any pictures at the game this time, because I was too busy getting a stupid sunburn on my arms, and eating sunflower seeds.  I do love me some sunflower seeds at a baseball game.

After the game, we headed over to my brother's for the pre-recital party where the girls all get ready together.  Then it was off to an awesome recital.  Pictures to come later because I wanted to watch the dancing with my own two eyes, instead of through my camera for once.  I left the picture taking to others.

Sunday morning we woke to happy houseguests!

Center of attention + Grandpa playing on the floor + throwing balls around = lots of morning giggles!

Bluuuue eyes and bloooonde curls!

Playing with Grandpa!!

Andy and Carson are having a very deep conversation.

Then it was time to get to work.  We had to move the hot tub and disassemble the crooked heaving deck to prepare for digging which will be happening tomorrow.

I have a leaky basement, you see.  And I don't like it one bit.  So tomorrow, some magical people are going to come to my house, make a big mess in the dirt, and make my basement stop leaking.  YAAAAY!

In case you are wondering how difficult it is to move an empty hot tub, it's really difficult.  THANK GOD for family willing to help a sistah out.

Andy and Nate apparently haven't been watching as much HGTV as I have, because goodness knows you aren't supposed to demo in sandals.  I'm happy to report that nobody lost any toes though.  Morgan was very disappointed that we didn't get to truly demo anything though.  She really wanted to swing a hammer and smash something.  She couldn't believe they were just going to pull out every screw with the drill.  Andy got to help with the crow bar once the builder of the deck changed from screws to nails, but Morgan wanted nothing to do with that.

Eventually the deck looked like this.

and the space looked like this.

Then, since we hadn't had enough fun for one weekend, we headed back to the baseball field for one more game.  Andy played third base and catcher for a while.

And then he got to pitch.

What form!

Then we came home from the game and I took some pictures of the flowers Morgan got from her recital and ate a cheese sandwich.

Soo pretty!

And then I collapsed.  At 8:30.  In my bed.  Thank you and goodnight.