Family Alive

Brian, Kristine, Analise, and Josiah Toone

Archive for June, 2008

Home, at long last, for a good long time

29th June 2008

Well, at least *I* am home for good.  Brian’s off to Boston on Tuesday to race with another team in a 4-day race.  He’ll be gone for a week, and we’ll miss him TONS.

But our weekend trip to Memphis was great fun.  Brian got 7th today, and he finished up 8th overall for the weekend.  The $$$ didn’t quite pay for the trip, but that wasn’t the point.  We had a fun time with our friends.  The kids enjoy race weekends infinitely more when they’ve got people to play with.  Besides Lauren and Anna’s company, we met 2 girls from Missouri, and the 6 of them played happily – VERY happily – for 2+ hours today during the races.  It was fabulous.

After the bike race, we enjoyed a fun lunch at Red Robin with an old college friend of Brian’s.  Bert and his wife, Stephanie, were wonderful lunch companions in spite of our exhausted and overwhelmed kids.  Poor Analise collapsed in my lap when the waitstaff brought out balloons and an ice cream sundae and sang to her.  She was so tired, she didn’t know what to do with herself. 

After celebrating Analise’s birthday several times in the last 6 weeks, she woke up today and asked, "Am I 4 now?"  "Yes, dear," I replied, "you are finally actually 4."   (She loves to use the word "actually".  It’s so cute.  Who’d expect a 4 year old to be saying, "well, no, actually, I don’t know where Josiah’s train is."  Huh!)  We’re having Brian’s family over for dinner tomorrow for the LAST celebration.  I’m going to make a nice fluffy pink cake and let her toss all the pink and purple sprinkles on it she wants 🙂

I can’t believe I have a 4-year old.  Where does the time go? 

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Happy 4th Birthday, my little Princess!

29th June 2008

Beautiful family photo by Corrie Haffly. 
She’s taken photos of some of the best moments in our lives!

Four years ago we were beginning a long, long day. I don’t remember much of it, but I know your Daddy was stressed and tired. But at 10:35pm, you burst into the world and all was well. We’ve all grown so much since then!

Right before our eyes, you’ve grown into a joyful little lady. Singing, dancing, imagining, laughing, loving, always up to something. You’re full of wise analytical discussions, and I can already see whispers of your Daddy’s super-sharp mind in your questions.

Of course, you love to ride your bike. You’re disappointed to find out that there’s no kid’s bike race when we’re at one of Daddy’s race. But you dive right in with your cheerleader attitude as we watch Daddy go round and round… "Go, Daddy, go! Go, Daddy, go!"

You love an audience. If there’s anyone around for you to talk to, you’ve got to be telling them about Dora or lately, of of Josiah’s latest mis-adventures. And when Josiah’s hurt, I’m never sure who hurts more – you or him!

Of course you’re into princesses now, which I find so appropriate. You love to find a willing partner to wear the tiaras, dress-up gowns, glass slippers and play with Belle or Ariel.

Analise, my sweet girl, we love who you’ve become. We pray everyday that you’d continue to grow in grace and wisdom. We’re so thankful for the surprise blessing that arrived just as we started our 2nd year together. May this be a year full of fun, learning, loving and grace.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

5 Sweet Years…

28th June 2008

Awesome wedding photo by Corrie Haffly. 
This is better than any of the professional photos we had!

Five years ago right now, Brian and I were being cheered away from our reception with sparklers waving and hundreds of little gold hearts blowing from our a/c vents. To this day, we still have little hearts that we can see in the windshield deep in the vent. We always say we’re newlyweds as long as those hearts stay there. Whew… because some days, two kids can make you feel not-so-much like newlyweds! We’re always glad for the reminder 🙂

Brian…Five sweet years. So much has happened. We’ve grown so much as individuals and even more as a couple. Two amazing, beautiful children, countless memories and experiences, many many miles, lots of bike races, hundreds of Toonebucks coffees. From the first sweet kiss at the altar 5 years ago that has multiplied by hundreds to the sweaty one after the bike race today… I love you even more today than I did then, Brian. Thank you for being my encourager, my helpmate, my partner, my provider, my shoulder to lean on and the arms that are always there to surround me with strength and love. I hope these 5 years are just a drop in the bucket compared to we’ve got ahead of us because I know our love is only going to get better. God’s written an amazing, captivating love story, and His grace and faithfulness shine through every page. I love you.

I was just re-reading our wedding pages and found these fun memories:

  • Our Story of meeting and falling in love as we wrote it before the wedding.
  • Our wedding party… fun little glimpses of who those awesome people were to us back then.
  • The slideshow of photos from our dating days, the engagement, the wedding weekend, and our awesome European honeymoon adventure.
  • And last but certainly not least, the wedding video. I remember Brian worked SO HARD from a little internet cafe in Oxford, England to get this online for all our far-off friends.

PS… his bike race went great today. You can see the details on his cycling blog, but he got 5th. He was a little disappointed until I pointed out that was quite appropriate for our 5th anniversary, and the prize $ for 5th was $55. Haha. I guess it was in the cards 🙂

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Celebrating US in Memphis

26th June 2008

Saturday is our 5th anniversary, and Sunday is Analise’s birthday (even though she’s celebrated several times already, and she thinks she’s already 4!). No big celebrations planned except that we’re off to Memphis… for a bike race 🙂 Actually, it was my idea. Brian wasn’t planning on racing, but we’ve wanted to make a family race weekend trip sometime when our friends Lennie – who also races – and Kim could go, and bring their kids, Lauren and Anna, who shared our zoo birthday party. The four of them have gotten to be great friends. So, of course the guys jumped at the chance to race, Kim and I are looking forward to cheering for them together and hanging out, and the kids are ECSTATIC at going on a trip together. It should be lots of fun, especially since we visited the library today and got 6 (!) new DVDs for the 5-hour trip. Two Princess Stories, 2 Signing Time, and 2 Thomas… a good mix to keep us from going crazy. The kids have been absolutely hooked on Cars for the last couple weeks, and though we love that movie, we need a change!

Analise is at her Grandma Beverly’s for the night, Josiah is resting fitfully after his 2-year checkup. His chubby little legs were really hurting him because of the 2 shots this evening. It’s been a quiet, relaxing night, and hopefully, I’ll have some good time in the morning to pull everything together for the early afternoon departure.

I’ve got a blog-post 90% written -with pictures even! – about the first leg of our trip to Wisconsin. Hopefully, I’ll finish it soon, maybe even tomorrow morning. Happy weekend!

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

Bad luck for my boy continues… **Update**

24th June 2008

Bad Luck Boy continues his woes… After a fun morning of playing in the sprinkler, popscicles and then splashing in the water table, Josiah tangled with a wasp on the back
porch. He’s got 2-3 stings on his cheek/by his ear and 2 on his
wrist, probably from trying to swat it away. What screams 🙁 I held it
together to get some ice on the ONE sting I saw, but then I unraveled
when I saw the others a few minutes later. Man, I feel so bad. Of
course, he’s fine. Back to his normal self, minus the slightly swollen
stings. Thank goodness its naptime here, bc I don’t know about the kids, but I’m exhausted.

**By this evening, the stings were hardly even noticeable, though Josiah was full of chatter about the bugs.  Analise was full of discussion about his experience, too, and we had a serious talk about NOT swatting bugs away, but calling for mommy or daddy and walking away without bothering the bugs.  Brian’s dad – my HERO – came this afternoon to spray the hidden wasp nest, where there were two big red wasps hanging out between the eave and the gutter.  Whew – enough excitement for one day!  Hopefully we can keep my boy from trouble for a few days 🙂

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

Some of my favorite links…

23rd June 2008

I’ve been stockpiling these good links in a text file, waiting for the day I could find some way to tie them all together.  It’ll never happen, so I might as well share them so you can enjoy them!  Honestly, these are some of my absolute favorite posts EVER…

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

Bumps and Cuts and the Weekend Cycling Wrap-up

23rd June 2008

The quick weekend trip to Franklin, TN was fun.  The kids and I enjoyed a pool party at the neighborhood pool with Richard & Christy and their kids.  Everyone crashed for serious naps after 3 hours in the sun and water.  Then during a walk around the block with the kids, Josiah stumbled and cracked his head on the sidewalk.  Not just concrete, but concrete-with-pebble sidewalk.  He had a small ragged gash and a big bump.  I debated for a while whether it was worth a long evening in the ER or not, but we finally went, and Brian met us on his way home from the bike race. 

The bump was no big deal, at least not compared to the last Big Bump, which is actually still visible, as the doctor told us it might be for quite a while.  But the gash, though small, was rough around the edges, deep, and seeped blood for quite a while while we waited to be seen.  He was quite the charmer racing his cars up and down the hallway at the end of the waiting room, walking around looking for J’s on any sign with letters, and chattering to the triage nurse, "I bump de head" and a cute "Ow, ow, ow" when she looked at it, instead of crying.  After an hour and 45 minutes of waiting, the physician’s assistant was quick to decide it would heal perfectly with some skin glue (Dermabond).  It was 10pm, Josiah was exhausted, and he screamed through the entire 30 second exam and 30 second gluing, but he was asleep within minutes of when we settled in the car.  His head looks much better, and actually, though it’s still covered with Dermabond, you can’t even really tell where the cut was.  The scrapes above and below and the bump look worse.  We tried to get a picture tonight, but he was moving around too much. 

Brian’s race went really well.  He got 4th in a race with a bunch of pros.  You can see all the details on his new cycling blog,   There are also photos and race details from his recent races in St. Louis and Minnesota.

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

A few pictures from our stopover in Chicago…

21st June 2008

Ok, there are a zillion pictures from our trip and of course, I’m way behind.  The trip was great, the kids were amazing travelers, I got to spend great time with everyone in my family, and we did some fun stuff.  We got back at 4am on Thursday morning, and believe it or not, we’re back on the road this weekend, just for a quick trip to visit Brian’s cousin & his family outside Nashville while Brian does a race today. 

But the reason for this post!  We stayed with my friend Michele in Aurora, IL on Tuesday night, and the kids burned off some of their restless car-supressed energy on Wednesday morning before the marathon drive back.  She got some great pictures, and she’s already resized and uploaded them for me 🙂  Whew! 

Morning tea – Josiah, Michael, Analise & Emma

The Polar Bear Swim in the backyard pool

"I a monkey!"  He’s hanging on the crossbar over the ladder, 6feet up.  He also hung over the climbing wall, 8feet up.  I was crazily hollering for him to get down while Michele caught this cute picture 🙂

The Bruise Brothers climbing the wall.

Happy time with Playdoh

Analise and Emma on top of the 5ft cat climbing tree. 

Michele and a quiet moment with the boys (there weren’t many of those!).

Surveying the situation from the playhouse.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

Where in the world are the Toone’s?

16th June 2008

Let me give you some hints:

1. We woke up this morning, and it was only 49 degrees outside
2. Kristine spent the day wearing a sweatshirt and pants
3. It was after 9:00 last night before the sun finally set
4. It was before 5:00 this morning when the sun rose
5. Bear have been spotted roaming around town this past week

If you haven’t guessed it yet, we are in the north woods of rural northwest Wisconsin. It’s been a crazy busy vacation as I spent the first part of it racing in the Twin Cities area of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota. Now we are visiting Grandma Sandy up here in Shell Lake, Wisconsin for a couple days before heading the long 18 hour journey back down to 90+ degree temps and humidity. Fun, fun, fun!

I’ve posted some pictures and blogged about my bike racing over on my new bike blog:

Check it out if you haven’t already! Kristine will be back later to post more pictures from our trip.

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Happy 2nd Birthday, Little Buddy!

9th June 2008

Wow – 2 years ago RIGHT NOW I was just about to give birth to my sweet little baby boy.  It was an exciting day!  I still can’t believe Brian blogged about it moment-by-moment.    My how he’s grown!   Still the same little sweet round face and strawberry blonde hair, though! 

The above photo was approved by Brian.  The below photo was not 🙂  Both were taken yesterday at our hotel in St. Louis. 
We’re going to spend the day at the aquarium here in Dubuque, IA and maybe find something fun to do for a birthday lunch. 

Posted in Uncategorized | 7 Comments »