September 25, 2014

Cincinnati for 10.

So last weekend we went to Cincinnati for our 10 year college reunion.

Homecoming for our 10 year reunion. #uc #cincinnati #daap #bearcats #stevensonpartyoffive

And the group shot:

Thanks to Brian for the group shot.
We all look pretty good!  And we all seem to be doing well, too.  I mean I guess you don't go to a reunion if you aren't happy with your life but it was good to see so many of us surviving this architecture thing (or getting out and finding happiness elsewhere).  Anyways there was cake!

And everyone got to watch my toddler eat an ear of corn:
Shouldn't you guys put me at a table or something?  I mean I'm just on the ground here.
Before we headed to the riverfront for the Homecoming parade:
cincinnati homecoming parade

 And some tailgating:

cincinnati homecoming tailgate

The kids had a ball:

Even if it was a bit insane to take them tailgating.

We spent the evening hanging out with some old friends and their new puppy.  I hope we didn't overwhelm them with our crew!

The next day we all met at Washington Park in Over the Rhine.  I KNOW, RIGHT?  As Matt put it "If someone told me I'd be hanging out in Over the Rhine in my 30's I'd think that I had made some BAD life choices."  That's literally where the riots were in 2001.  But I trusted and went with the group's plan.  It turns out they completely renovated the park and it's actually really, really nice now:

Music Hall
Even has a playground that is beyond awesome.  It has swings!  And musical things!  It's fenced in and is well designed so you can see the whole thing no matter where you are!  But has many interesting paths for the kids to discover!

Washington Park Playground
And... this thing:

The kids hang on and you spin it around.  Flawless plan.  I'm actually in favor of more diverse and interesting play equipment.  Literally every playground I go to in any city I go to is the same exact stuff.  I think kids need to take (measured) risks to conquer fear and build self-confidence. Playgrounds are a perfect and relatively safe place for that to happen.  Experts agree with me.  So I highly recommend this awesome park if you're ever in the Cincy area.

The park even has a water play area that we did not explore b/c wet kids w/o bathing suits = NOOOOOOPE.

Music Hall in Cincinnati
From there we walked to brunch at Motr which was perfect.  We had the whole patio to ourselves!

Brunch It was so fun to spend some time with everyone.  Brought back so many memories.  Speaking of memories on our way back to the car we helped our daughter take pictures of numbers for her "Number Walk" school project.  Because apparently even 10 years later we are incapable of being in Over the Rhine without doing some sort of school project.

Practicing her Number Walk homework for tomorrow. She took the pictures while we were in Cincinnati bc apparently Matt and I can't go to Over the Rhine wo doing some sort of school project. #kindergarten #cincinnati #stevensonpartyoffive
Honestly her craft is pretty on par with the stuff I produced in the 5th year Over the Rhine/Kroger studio.

From there we drove up to campus.  The last time we were there DAAP was grey.  I wanted to see it with the new metal paneling:

It is awesome.  I was quite impressed. SO SO much better than EIFS. We even got the kids out of the car and walked through the building.  Turns out the DAAP staircase is crazy fun to explore when you're a little kid:

DAAP Grand staircase
My kids on the DAAP staircase WORLDS ARE COLLIDING.
I forgot so much about that building.  All of the bridges.  All of the nooks and crannies that serve no purpose:

It certainly is... something.  Fun to spend 15 min walking through.  Not as much to live in for 6 years.  ANYWAYS!  We even took the kids past some of the studios:

Peeking in the window of our freshman studio.  aka where Matt and I sat next to each other.  Aka WHERE IT ALL BEGAN.

A little APX pride.  Both Matt and I were charter members of the UC chapter!
And then tried to get snacks from the vending machines which were broken.  SOME THINGS NEVER CHANGE.  They did put some shading up on some of this glass, though.  Maybe those stairwells aren't horrifically hot anymore.

Campus looks great.  Very different but pretty awesome.  The Main Street plan has really come to fruition:

Driving around campus was... shocking.  EVERYTHING is different.  Very sanitized.  "Look Parents!  Your kids will be safe here because all of the same chains you eat at are on campus now!"

Cincinnati UUUUUUGH.  But maybe I'm just bitter b/c this is what my favorite bar, Christies, looks like now:
Empty lot OF SADNESS AND WOE. They tore down happiness.

Anyways I'm so glad we went.  It was super fun to revisit that time in our lives.  And in case you want to know what being in architecture school was like here's a crazy appropriate buzz feed List:

38 Things All Architecture Students Know All Too Well.


September 18, 2014

Throwback Thurs: Random College Edition.

So!  This weekend Matt and I are headed to our ten (TEN!!!) year college reunion!  Crazytown.  So I thought I'd throw up a few pictures from our last year of grad school for a fun little TBT.  Enjoy!

APX Convention 2003
Don Pablos on the River in Cincinnati:  LB and I will be recreating this picture this weekend.
End of 2003
2003 Matt in vigilante mode about to toss a pumpkin over a railing.  To celebrate New Years Eve.  Like you do.
disney 070
Disney 2003.  The next time we attempted this we did it with 3 kids.

Disney 2003
A bunch of people you don't know at Disney 10 years ago.  Isn't my blog thrilling!  But the dude on the far left is getting married next weekend and it's going to be super fun times.
disney 025
World of Coke in the ATL.  Because POLAR BEAR.

Bridge Break 2004
This was a school project.  For seriously.  It was part of Bridge Break.  A thing... architects do.
Bridge Break 2004
Here we are at Bridge Break.  I'm very confused as to why I have a box of bubbles next to me.
Bridge Break 2004
The University of Cincinnati MArch class of 2004.
Engagement Party
At our engagement party.  10 year college reunion means that our 10 year wedding anniversary is also coming up.  In less than a month.  TIME FLIES, FOLKS!

September 17, 2014

Halloweekends at Cedar Point.

So. HalloWeekends at Cedar Point is pretty fantastic.
We brought our kids on Sunday and it was So. Much. Fun.  We just had the best day.  My parents offered to come with us and watch the kids while we rode a few coasters.  And as luck would have it my brother and sister-in-law were planning on going the same day!  So my entire family was there together:

Three generations of coaster riders. So fun to be there with my whole family!! #iheartcp #bloggingatCP #halloweekends #cedarpoint #stevensonpartyoffive
My sister-in-law loves the Mantis so she wanted to be there for a Last Stand before it closes next month:

We didn't all hang together all day, though - they had coasters to ride!  But we met up for some key moments:
Woodstock Express
The Woodstock Express.  The Dude is hanging on for dear life!
It was the kids' first time at Cedar Point so it was their first real experience with roller coasters.  They were hesitant at first... And then got really into it - they rode the Wilderness Run 3 times in a row!

A little bit nervous. ... #cedarpoint #bloggingatCP
The Parent Swap was awesome. It's  a system where only one parent has to wait in line for the coaster.  The other parent can be with the kids.  Then when the first parent is done riding the other parent gets to go directly on the ride.  Makes SO much sense so that everyone can have a great time and do the things that they want to do! We used it all day.  The kids even got into watching us ride:

Coaster Riding
Watching Matt ride Top Thrill Dragster from the grandstands - he's the guy in the orange shirt right in the middle.  The picture on the right is of my dad and Matt on the Millennium Force - they are right in the middle of the train.
Fall is so much fun at Cedar Point.  The Halloweekends decorations are really neat.  There are a bunch of haunted houses that we didn't do b/c kids but even the stuff for the little ones is fun.  They especially loved trick or treating through the Kiddie Kingdom.  I loved the graveyard for old rides.

Cedar Point

There were almost no lines all days:

I can't believe the Raptor is 20 years old!!!!  I remember waiting in every one of those switch backs the summer after 8th grade when it was brand new.

And the weather was PERFECT:

Cedar Point!
Other highlights include taking the kids on the Dogems.  We did it once at the beginning of the day and once as we were leaving because the Dude loved them so, so much:

The Sky Ride - another one we did twice.

PicMonkey Collage
I even took Tiny on it.  He LOVED it.  Pointed at all the coasters and said CHOO CHOO.

Cedar Point!

And Dinosaurs Alive - the kids loved the dinos, the adults enjoyed the views of the Millennium Force and Top Thrill Dragster.

Cedar Point!

Bottom line?  We ALL had fun.

Yay Cedar Point!!!!!

Disclaimer:  I am a Cedar Point Blogger and was invited to attend their BloggingatCP event.  Tickets were provided for me and my family.  All opinions are as always my own.

September 15, 2014

The First Day of School. Ever.

So!  Last week my Dude started preschool.

First Day of Preschool!

That nervous smile just kills me. And his answer to "what do you want to be when you grow up" seems super legit.

First Day of Preschool!

On the very first day I got to go in with him for a little practice day.  Check out the classroom, meet the teachers, learn about circle time.  You know... the highlights:

First Day of Preschool!
Tiny got to come in and learn about preschool, too.

The dude did great.  No problems.  He was too busy to color his name tag but no big deal.  Most exciting was hanging out with his buddies.  He's lucky enough to know and be friends with quiet a few of his little classmates:

First Day of Preschool!
On the way home I asked him what he wanted for lunch and he requested smoothies.  One of his favorite foods since he was little. We saved them for a special bedtime snack:

First Day of Preschool!
And I have to include the throwback picture because LOOK HOW BIG HE IS NOW AND HE'S GOING TO SCHOOOOOOL AND IT GOES SO FAST:


 Speaking of things going fast - Tiny got to have a smoothie, too.  His very first one!

First Day of Preschool!
The next day things got real.  The first day of drop off.  It was... yeah it was awful.  He was great up until getting in the car.  Then he decided he didn't want to leave me.  That school wouldn't be fun if I didn't come with him.  It escalated into tears and woe.  The school was great about it, though.  The school director (who is helping out with the 3yo class in the beginning) took him and told me "It's fine just GO."  So I did.  And then I pulled around the corner and freaked out.  But!  My friend pulled up next to me and was very reassuring.  It's so nice to know some of the parents this time around!  A bit later I texted the director (because that's how you parent in 2014) to see how he was doing.  Apparently he calmed down immediately.  Cried literally one tear.  They wiped it up and he went on with his day.  She even sent me a picture of him participating in circle time.

Not crying.  Score!

When I picked him up the look on his face was AMAZING.  He was SO PROUD.  So EXCITED.  So HAPPY.  And he didn't stop talking for a solid hour.

First Day of Preschool!
You know what, mommy?  ....  Know what? 

I think I heard every single detail of the day.  Who he sat next to in circle time.  What they ate for snack.  What song they sang.  The whole sub story of the book they read.  What his favorite car was and what the other kids played with and on and on and on.  It was awesome.  And crazy how different the preschool experience was from when my daughter first started.  She had no hesitation but also told me basically nothing about her day.  But the verdict from both of them was the same:


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...