Things that make a childhood

I think every family has one month a year that seems to house the most birthdays. Our family’s is March. While no one on the Ranch has a bday in March, our extended family has taken over the month and one must try and stay one step ahead with getting gifts and cards in the mail.

This past weekend we tried something a bit different. We hosted just one of our nephews, E, who turned the big 7 last week. We decided that maybe if we channel all our energy into just one kiddo, perhaps we will fair better…and not be soooo exhausted on Sunday.

Well, we got 50% of that at least…..we were all exhaustamundo last night…but what a fantastic weekend we had!

Our kiddos and E had no school on Friday so we picked him up a day early to get the party started. The hubby took first shift and he and the boys tried to go ice fishing, but alas it was a pretty big jump from shore to ice as the edges are all thawed. So…off they went to the playground and the library.

That night was special bday dinner number one followed by a movie selected by E. (Night at the Museum 3….was just ok…but we did get to see the return of Matthew Crowley from Downton…as Sir Lancelot…which was weird…and unsettling…that this was the movie he made a debut it)

Saturday was another lovely day so off the boys went in search of ice fishing….

….and home they came empty handed…though at least they did get out on the ice and give it a valiant effort.

Then it was Auntie’s turn…so off we went to downtown Madison where there was lots going on. (Can you tell I am the one that remembers to take the pictures??)

We had to park and walk and I really had the kiddos guessing where we were headed. Upon realizing it was the Children’s Museum, I thought the boy was going to have a coronary. He was whooping and shouting and just so darn excited. He then proceeded to tell his cousin that the Children’s Museum is one of the ‘greatest things that made up his childhood’. Oh man, I had no idea so I was glad I picked the jackpot of places to go.

I did explain to E that we had taken he and his brother several years ago and did he remember? He replied, ‘No Auntie, I don’t have a very good memory from when I was little’. Oh they were just so funny.

Here are the 3 kiddos in 2011:


And here they are in 2015:


Apparently we need to stop feeding these kids….


Oh we had a good time indeed. Then we decided to walk up to the square to see what fun things we could find. Upon hitting the corner, the boy declared that he knew exactly where we were and could we go to the Veteran’s Museum which was just a short walk away. “Mom, it’s free and it is sooooo cool!” (He had just been on a field trip with school). Far be it from me to say no so off we went.


Here is what I can tell you….the boy remembers EVERY SINGLE THING the tour guide told them on the trip. EVERY-SINGLE-THING! So boy did WE get quite the tour from him. I cannot explain how excited he was…particularly that everything he showed us was “REAL!!!”  MOM……that cannon over there…It’s REAL! (He would EXCLAIM!)


Nothing, however, could prepare us for his ‘absolute favorite room…I mean mom this is why I love Madison….you just can’t believe what is in here!’ (At which point a few strangers also followed us to see what all the hubub was about) It was this:


To quote the boy “Mom, that’s a REAL chopper from Vietnam”. I have also now learned that to a 7 year old and 9 year old boy…..a museum dedicated to Veterans is truly the coolest thing EVER!

The last stop was to the downtown Madison library. If you haven’t had a chance to check out the newly re-done library….get on down there. It is just lovely and has so many great things to check out.

I actually got to go check out the garden section while the kids busied themselves with art projects.


Some of us may have contemplated our previous decision that we did not require a nap.


Oh it was a perfect weekend for us to enjoy with a 7 year boy indeed!


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