Weekly Photo Challenge: Details

The girls and I went on a walk in the woods earlier this week. We saw a frog, a rabbit and lots of different insects. We are very lucky that we live so close to so many different forest preserves within the Forest Preserve District of Dupage. This week’s adventure took place at the Willowbrook Wildlife Center.

We saw many different animals that the Wildlife Center is currently caring for then we went for a short hike on the trail.

This flower is one of the many that we saw.



Summer Checklist – Update #7

It’s been very hot but we’ve also had some cooler days that have been perfect for spending the day outside. On one of those recent cooler days, we took advantage of the weather and went on a walk in the woods. The Fullersburg Woods and Nature Center is a great spot for some outdoor fun. We spent some time playing in the nature center and then went on a trail. Big girl brought some of her “exploring tools.” She brought a magnifying glass and a flashlight so that she could really examine leaves and insects that crossed our path.

We’ve gone on this trail many times before but this was one of the first times when we went and it wasn’t humid and really hot. We could take our time and just enjoy being outside.

We saw many birds and insects and one frog. Last summer, when we were walking on the path, a young deer ran right in front of us and then we noticed the mama deer watching from behind some trees! This walk was not nearly as exciting but it was still fun.

The checklist thus far:

  • Go to the library.
  • Go to the pool.
  • Make banana pudding.
  • Ride the train at the mall.
  • Go to the playground.
  • Make cookies.
  • Go downtown.
  • Go on a hike.
  • Have a picnic.
  • Go to American Girl Place.
  • Go to the beach.
  • Go to the zoo.
  • Eat at Flat Top Grill.
  • Read books.
  • Eat at Noodles & Company.
  • Get ice cream.
  • Go to the splash pads downtown.
  • Go to the water park.
  • Go to a festival.
  • Go to the movie theater.
  • Play on the McDonalds playground after lunch.
  • Go to family fun festival downtown.
  • Go to the Art Museum and go to the kids area after looking at paintings.
  • Go to the dinosaur museum (Field Museum).
  • Go to the space museum (Adler Planetarium).
  • Have a pajama day. (Although big girl has now requested that we have 100 pajama days.)


Two years ago….

Most of the times, when Facebook reminds me of my “memories” from past years, I smile for a few minutes but then move on. I rarely “reshare” the post. However, today’s memory from two years ago was an important one for me.

So, apologies to my Facebook friends who also happen to follow my blog. This will be a repeat. 🙂


Two years ago. After looking at 75 houses. After making 9 offers on 8 of those. After so much stress. And disappointment. And more stress. And wondering if we would ever be able to accomplish the goal of home ownership. Two years ago. Finally. We were able to hold the keys to our house. Since then we’ve battled weeds, blizzards, trees, noisy and stinky wildlife, and the previous owner’s choices. But, right now I’m watching cartoons with big girl, I can hear baby girl starting to wake up, I can see our beautiful front yard, I can hear our dryer running……and although it hasn’t been easy I’m so proud that we’ve been able to do this for our girls, ourselves,…..and the cats.

What you can see when you’re out for a run

There’s not a lot that I enjoy about actually running. I enjoy how it has changed my body for the better. And I enjoy the feeling of accomplishment that I get after I’m done. But the actual running – sweating, sore legs, etc. – is just not that much fun. But one of the best parts of the actual run is being able to see things that I wouldn’t normally notice if I wasn’t out for a morning run.

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Nature's beauty

Nature’s beauty

Saying Goodbye to Summer

Western Trail

Western Trail

One of my favorite parts of the morning walks that the girls and I took during the summer was walking along the Western Trail path. Even though it runs along a busy road, it’s quiet and you can momentarily forget that you are in a Chicago suburb.

This picture was taken on one of those walks.  I think that the trail looks incredibly peaceful.

The leaves have already started, or finished, changing colors.  There was frost on the ground this morning and I contemplated walking back inside to put on a hat and mittens.  (First step, figure out where I put my hat and mittens after last winter.)

So, now, it’s time to start the countdown to Christmas…….

Urban nature

Sometimes it is difficult to see nature in the city. I am lucky to live near two large parks and a nice path running along the river. However, I rarely see any animals other than pets, pigeons or squirrels. I guess that’s why these ducks are so interesting to me. It seems that they have made their home on the side of the road as I’ve seen them there almost every day this month.