Sunday, April 29, 2012

Do you think Luca likes trucks?

Here is a video we shot recently of Luca's reaction to seeing pretty much any big truck (or "ig ruck" as he would say!). Enjoy!

Our kite

April2012015, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

Here' s our kite! A nice man lent us the tail for it--we were using a plastic bag since it needed something to weigh it down.

Luca flies his first kite

April2012023, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

Luca was thrilled to get a chance to fly the kite!

He didn't want to let it go once he got his hands on the string!

Kite day!

April2012018, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

Recently, Norah's Grandpa and Oma came to visit. Our town had an annual kite flying day, so we thought we would check it out. It was FREEZING, but still fun! Can you spot Grandpa, Norah, James, and Luca in this photo?

Nonna and Jeri hovering precariously over Chicago

April2012071, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

I don't think that Jeri ever really LIKED going out on the platforms, but she appeased us all for a few photos!

Mama and Norah

April2012067, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

ON my second attempt to go out on the platforms, I sat down, and it was a much more pleasant (read: less terrifying) experience. Norah had no fear at all--she was in and out of these things no problem!

Crazy girls!

April2012058, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

Up in the Willis Tower, you can step our onto these clear platforms and look down all the way to the ground. Here are Norah and Bree showing us adults that it really is no big deal!

Water Taxi

April2012052, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

We saw a sign for water taxis near the river--only $4 for adults and $2 for was a great excuse for us to a) take a boat ride and b) get a ride to the Sears (er, Willis) Tower, which was our last stop for the day. It was a great trip--perfect for kids!

Wrigley Building

April2012051, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

Norah and Bree showing us the size and scale of the Wrigley Building.

The Bean

April2012045, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

Here are Norah and Bree under "The Bean" in Millennium Park.


April2012039, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

The girls were real troopers. They walked and walked and walked as we made our way from the train station to Millennium Park. Here are Nonna, Norah, and Bree taking a rest near this cow statue.

On the train

April2012035, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

Here are Jeri and I on the train to Chicago.

Bree visits Chicago!

April2012033, originally uploaded by Chiara and James Hemsley.

We recently had Norah's best friend Bree come to visit us in Chicago! Nonna and Jeri were here, too, but Bree was definitely the highlight in Norah's mind!

We went downtown on the Metra--here they are on the train.

Norah accepts her Oscar

All the kids got a trophy after the performance! Norah wanted to go home and drink out of it! Doesn't she know that trophy cups are for LOOKING and not for USING???

Who's that bear?

Norah Bear, that's who!

Norah was in a story/acting class this spring, and she was cast as the bear in their play! The teacher didn't know her nickname is Norah Bear!

Butterfly-catching baby

Norah and Luca got their own butterfly nets for Easter, since otherwise they would fight! They went out to look for butterflies even though it was only in the 60's that day....I didn't tell them that butterflies like it a little warmer; they were having such a great time running around!

Easter photo shoot

I had to get an Easter pic of Norah and Luca. He insisted on holding his airplane...whatever works, I guess!

Mommy's Bed!

Luca absolutely loves to play on our bed, which he calls "Mommy's bed." He rolls around and giggles to himself and has a grand time--usually until he rolls off!

Here he is in his Easter best just before we left for church....

James' new look

James shaved his beard on Easter, as is his yearly tradition. He decided that he might like to keep the mustache. What do YOU think?


Luca loved looking for the eggs! He was so cute running around with his little bag!

Easter Egg Hunt

Norah found one!

By the way, James had me worried that dyed Easter eggs would stain our carpet--is that true? So, we had some plastic ones that "The Easter Bunny" hid for us!


Norah loved checking out all the vehicles!


Here's Luca in the ATV. Here's how Luca says police: "Peesh!"

Police Station

The family band recently went to our town's NEW police station's open house. I thought that we would be one of a handful of families who would think touring a police station would be fun, but I was WRONG! There were so many people there! We had to wait in line for about 40 minutes just to get in, but once we did, it was great. They showed us the jail, the briefing rooms, lots of other rooms, and the motor pool! Here's Norah on an ATV that they use when there is a police emergency on one of the forest preserve trails.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Mission Point Lighthouse

Here's the lighthouse viewed from the shore. It brought back childhood memories for me--I have seen many lighthouses in my day!

Mission Point

We made it to the lighthouse! Can you tell we are COLD???

Mission Peninsula

During the rare sunny (but still windy and cold) part of the day, we drove up the Mission Peninsula and stopped here to see the Grand Traverse Bay and the vineyards.

Has anyone had Michigan wine? James, being a Californian at heart, would have none of it!

Mini Vacation

We were able to take a very mini vacation to Traverse City for a couple of days. Thanks to Chiara's family for watching the kids for us!

Here's James taking in the view from our hotel room, which was really more like a condo!

The trip was great, except for the weather. Before I left, I looked at the forecast, and it said that it would be 50 degrees and sunny while we were there. Thus, we brought light fleece jackets. Well, it was actually about 35 degrees, windy, cloudy, and snowy while we were there, so we were quite cold when outside! This is a rare time (lasted about 2 hours) of sunlight during our trip.

Regardless, we had a nice time relaxing, eating out without children (a wonderful thing!), and just spending time together.