Friday, October 23, 2015

A Weekend with Jennie & Grace.

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As I mentioned yesterday, Kip and I stayed home to be with Jennie and Grace instead of going to Manhattan for the K-State game. They came from Chicago for a long weekend so Jennie could attend a wedding on Friday night. Grace stayed with us during the wedding, and we had the best time. I took her on a walk, filled her belly with lots of delicious food, and Kip made her laugh and laugh and laugh. She went down for us like a champ and slept through the whole Royals game. We kept our usual yelling and high-fiving at a reasonable decibel for the house's first sleeping baby!

On Saturday, we ate a great Minsky's lunch and walked around at both Prairiefire and Park Place. I couldn't resist photos of mom and daughter in front of the museum wall, especially because they both matched so perfectly! Grace is a delight and just a few short days from being one.
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On Sunday I wanted to do something "fall." Kip made us a great breakfast in the morning, and after a short nap, we made the drive to Red Barn Farm in Weston. Grace is little for a lot of their activities, but we did ride the green grain train and looked at all the pumpkins together.
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Her favorite activity was definitely the hay bale. Parents, take note. This is cheaper than a bounce house and seemed to be providing endless fun for the youngsters in Weston. Kids were climbing and jumping off of the top (it was pretty smashed down and not very high), and Grace was very busy feeling all the different textures while watching the leaping kids. We pulled her away after about ten minutes of looking at hay.
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We had a snack of kettle corn, caramel apple, and little donuts, which I followed up with an apple cider slushie. I really wanted to pick apples, but they were picked out. Thankfully they still had plenty for sale, and I insisted on taking a LOT home with us. Lots of applesauce in my future!

Over the weekend, I was totally Grace's second favorite Lynch. She adored Kip and always wanted to see what he was up to. It was so sweet watching her crawl over and pull up on his boots and jeans. He could make her giggle and laugh, and he was the one who read her a couple books over the weekend. Kip's going to be a great dad to a little girl next year!
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There was no point in taking home their big huge pumpkins because the squirrels love to devour them. We did grab a few more small decorative pumpkins and gourds to decorate the mantle on the fireplace. Between the sun and the wind and the drive back and forth, we were all sleepy after we got back from Weston. Everyone took a nap before we shared one more meal together before their flight back to Chicago. Kip and I loved having Jennie and Miss Grace here for a long fall weekend!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

K-State Oktoberfest and TCU.

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On October 10th, K-State tried to upset a pretty good TCU team in Manhattan. It was also our annual Oktoberfest tailgate, a great excuse to drink beer out of steins and eat good sausage. Don and Karen carried on the tradition of wearing some lovely purple German apparel, thought nothing as good as what I wore last year to Oktoberfest. It didn't fit this year with an expanding belly bump!

I'm always grateful for the Alpha Chi friends that I get to see weekly and throughout the year. On the 10th, I had coffee with my little little sis Ally from Alpha Chi before she dropped me off at the stadium for the tailgate. Anne and Erica were there without their toddlers, and Katie V. stopped by to visit too.
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Kip was just being the model as I set up the camera and the photo for the Alpha Chis, but I loved this photo of him too much not to include it. He's holding what appears to be a beer cup at first glance but is actually a cup of fruit for me. I cannot stop eating ALL THE FRUIT. Fruit salad is actually my favorite, though I'm eating an apple a day, fruit in a smoothie and pretty much anything else from the fruit family anytime it's in the vicinity.

In the other photo, Erica and Jon had a packed sports weekend as they also went to the Royals game on Friday night and Jon went to the Chiefs game Sunday. We cannot get over the fact that we are both having girls, with Erica's little one arriving first in December. As Jon says, it's a good thing that he and Kip like each other and both like beer. Because as Beyonce says, "Who runs the world? GIRLS."

The game was a heart breaker, but what K-State game hasn't been lately? We were all so excited on October 3rd when we lead the game in Stillwater and ended up losing. (Our family had to finish the game in the car on the way to Justus Drugstore!) During the TCU game, we really thought we had a chance and were thrilled with our lead at halftime. We didn't linger too long in the parking lot because we didn't want to miss any of the action. Another loss. And last Saturday against Oklahoma...well, it's a good thing the Royals were playing at the same time. Kip and I stayed home to hang out with Jennie, and we're glad we did so we could see the Royals be amazing. You know it's bad when Bill Snyder writes an apology to the students. We're hoping it gets better, though as Kip points out, it would be hard to get any worse.

But we're loyal, and we'll be back! The K-State v. Baylor game is a Thursday night special event, and we're excited to be back in Manhattan for another game in two weeks. "Faithful to our colors, we will ever be!"

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

The Three Books of September.

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Getting caught up on a few loose ends around this blog after I got majorly distracted by the very exciting news that we're having a girl. Making a baby registry was hard! I had absolutely no problem with a wedding registry because I'd been a grown-up and used a kitchen and lived in a house for many years. But I had never had a baby before. It was fun to consult with my mom friends, especially because everyone has different things that work for them. I think we've got a working list and at least 17 more weeks to get organized. And then probably several years to get it figured out. We are absolutely no closer on baby girl's name. We have three books from the library, and I hope that might help us get some more ideas onto the table.

Three books from September to catch up on too...

Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore had been on the Kindle for a while, and I randomly decided to read it at the beginning of the month. It starts out strong with a bit of intrigue surrounding the bookstore that stays open around the clock. There's a little bit of love interest and an adorable meet-cute. But then it's just too much. A bit too much tech geek speak and an unbelievable ending.

We Are Called to Rise was Abbey's choice for book club for September, and I read it in a blitz. Highly recommend. Multiple narrators, alternating story lines that end up connecting and overlapping. At book club, we had a few complaints and a concerns about some of the logistics, but the story set in Las Vegas is guaranteed to win you over at some level. It's a timely read for conversations about refugees around the world as well.

Fangirl is by Rainbow Rowell, author of Eleanor & Park. I have a well documented love for the Eleanor & Park, but I didn't love Landline as much. Kate picked out Fangirl and as soon as she was finished with it she was insistent that I had to read it too. I absolutely adored it for several reasons - freshman experience at the University of Nebraska, so very similar to our K-State world, a solid love story, and a look at the world of fan fiction which I know nothing about. And because it's Rainbow Rowell, it's got some heavy stuff in it alongside the lighter love story. I read it as quickly as possible, and I have been telling everyone I know to read it too! It became our October book club book, and I'm excited to discuss it with the group on Monday. 

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

A Trip to Justus Drugstore.

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Besides my sister's 30th birthday and Kip's parents 50th anniversary, the year had more big birthdays! My mom and dad both turned 60 this year. Lauren went to Indy for Dad's 60th, taking with her some really cool cups I designed for the pool house as a present for my dad. I should have taken a picture of the cups before they went to Indianapolis!

For Mom's 60th birthday, we planned a special dinner out with the Luhrs Ladies (3.5 of us) and Kip! We didn't tell her where we were eating, but we gave her a gift certificate in early September so that she could buy a new outfit for the occasion. On Saturday, October 3rd we all headed north together to Justus Drugstore in Smithville! As we got farther and farther away from downtown, she definitely could guess that we were headed to Justus. There's not much else that warrants dressing up for a Saturday night reservation at 6:30 pm that direction!
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I was the only one who had been to Justus before so I hoped that I wasn't overselling it. However, the meal absolutely lived up to the hype and was perfect from start to finish. Mom, Lauren and I raved about our entrees, and every part of the presentation was just perfect. Lauren tried rabbit sausage (she was the bravest!), I had a deconstructed chicken pot pie, and Mom ordered a dish made with lamb. I asked Mom where she learned to like lamb - she never cooked it for us growing up - and she said she would buy it on K-State's campus and take it back to the farm for Grandma to cook in the 1970s!

Kip ordered the fried chicken, a risky move because he makes great fried chicken at home! You really should never order things that you make well yourself. He still thought it was very good, and whatever they did to prepare the kale alongside the fried chicken made it also delicious for him. Apps and zerts were both amazing, as well as the homemade bread. It takes a long time to eat at Justus, which was fine with us. The K-State game was already over and lost, and we enjoyed the company.

Friday, October 16, 2015

The Week Lu Turned 30.

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My sister turned 30 on September 23rd, and we celebrated in style. Like for a week. I'm pretty sure I'm guilty of the extended party a couple of years ago myself.

To kick off Lauren's birthday week, we saw Taylor Swift at the Sprint Center. It's been two years since our first trip to see Taylor in concert, and we were super excited to go again. Katherine came from Goodland, and Kate and Anne joined us too. We had a great dinner at BRGR (after a bit of a wait) and made our way to the Sprint Center with perfect timing. Our seats were amazing, and we were able to "Shake it Off," sing and dance as much as we wanted. We may not be T. Swift's target audience, but there is something for everyone in a Taylor Swift concert and we all loved it. I'd totally go again - though it's a few years before baby girl Lynch can join in on the fun too. It makes for an excellent girls night out.

Monday night when I also introduced the hashtag #LELturns30, a very original way to mark all the events of the week.
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Birthdays are better with flowers, and Mom delivered this beautiful arrangement from Flowers by Emily to Lauren before a Bar Method class on Tuesday. I specified "purple," and this was the gem that we got for Lu. So pretty!
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On her actual birthday, Kip and I met a big group of her friends out at the K for a Royals game. She had 23 tickets in the big group, and only four of the guests were NOT attorneys. Kip and I were two of them. That's a lot of lawyers at one tailgate.
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I think my sister should own all the shirts that reference 1985, especially in honor of her 30th birthday! It seems crazy to be living through another Blue October. We've stayed up way too late, high-fived in the living room so many times and YELLED at our TV.
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We brought s'mores bars and chips to the tailgate and ate corn dogs and brats inside the stadium later. It was our second Royals game of the season, and we made it almost to the end before we needed to get home. Our days start really early for all this weeknight fun! Kip and I actually got home in time to watch the Royals win it in the 10th inning! Lauren and her friends lasted much longer than we did.
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Like I told you, almost everyone looking at the camera is an attorney. What a fun group of Royals fans!
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The end of the week was the Plaza Art Fair, one of our favorite traditions for Lauren's birthday. Kip and I were exhausted after trying to keep up with the 30-year-old all week, but we rallied for a visit, good food and a walk around the Plaza. We never buy anything but love to see the different art - this year all the fine art creations made of wood jumped out at us. I also like to see all the people, though the crowds on Friday night can be a bit intense. It was the perfect wrap up to celebrating a week of Lauren's 30th birthday!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Baby Lynch is a GIRL.

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We found out yesterday afternoon that baby Lynch is a girl! Everything looked great during the ultrasound, and it was pretty neat to see all her little features. Thankfully the ultrasound technician Paulette is so well trained because we weren't too sure what we were looking at, but Paulette explained everything to us for almost a half hour! I was glad Kip could see the visual proof that she's kicking me all the time.

Everyone asks about Kip's reaction, and truthfully, truly, he's thrilled. He did want to stop at Home Depot on the way home to buy locks so she can never leave the house and is pretty sure she's going to make us broke, but he's SO excited. We have a friend who is the father of two little boys who told us on the pub crawl that God only gives girls to men who can handle them. And then laughed at himself. It felt a bit prophetic.
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It's also not lost on me that this special little girl will start kindergarten the same year as so many other dear little girls belonging to my favorite people. It's fun to share with my best friends, and our little Lynch will probably be the tallest in this group even though she is the youngest.

As for the donuts, on Wednesday morning I stopped at LaMar's and ordered five dozen donuts. I dropped off a one pound bag of pink sprinkles and one pound bag of blue sprinkles. Last night after the ultrasound, I called and left a message with the order. This morning, just after six o'clock, Kip and I went to grab five dozen of these pink beauties to share with our co-workers. We celebrated with LaMar's at our wedding, so why not for a baby as well? Bring on the pink! But also probably lots of lavender too. Who are we kidding? We love to wear purple around these parts.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Book Club Bumps and Babies.

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Probably one of the most fun parts of being pregnant is that four of the nine members of my book club are pregnant at the same time. Technically there is someone due each of the next few months - Amy (November), Erica (December), Leah (January) and me in February. But we all know that babies show up when they want to show up!

We find out today if baby Lynch is a boy or a girl, and yes, we're so excited. Neither of us have a feeling one way or another. But when people ask I normally tell them that Kip was raised with only brothers, and I just had one sister growing up, so someone is going to have to adjust!

The mamas above are expecting two girls and one boy, but the total in our book club leans towards boys. Before we find out, the total is seven boys and six girls. So we'll either bring it to an overall tie or keep the next generation of readers boy heavy. Numbers aside, it is so fun to have a bunch of mamas to ask a million questions about pregnancy, and soon enough, babies!

Instagram is probably the first place to check for an announcement about baby Lynch, and probably tomorrow, but we'll get something posted here sometime soon too!