Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Message from Amy...

She can't post on the blog from her i-phone, so I am her admin assistant at the moment! Happy New Year everybody! XO, Dawn

Good Morning from Fort Morgan Alabama

This morning I woke up in a beach house in Fort Morgan Alabama. The
sun is out and the wind is calm, so it is warming up beautifully. We are on our way to Mobile to see the USS Alabama battleship.

There are alot of nature trails near our beach house, so we'll probably visit a few of those before we head back to Wisconsin. I took a walk on the beach last night and found a dead jellyfish. The other pictures are of the sunset and the gulf. I hope everyone is having a wonderful Tuesday morning!

Love, Amy

Saturday, December 26, 2009

WOW what a Wonderful White Christmas!

Thank You everyone! I am truly grateful for a family who can just pitch in and get it done. I could not have done it without each and everyone of you. Thank you from the bottom of my tired feet and full heart. I enjoyed talking to those I had the chance to talk to and I am sorry for the ones I didn't get too, but it wasn't a sleepover and I ran out of time. I hope everyone got their gift exchange and thank those who helped keep the gift opening going. With the party over lets all take a deep breath before we start the new year and enjoy the beauty of what Wisconsin and Minnesota and Michigan have to offer, SNOW. Thanks again for all the support and help today it made my job so much easier. Happy New Year! Love and gratitude, Julie

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Well ready or not here it comes. Christmas week is upon us I hope everyone had enjoyed the planning and preparing for an awesome family and memory filled holiday. I feel a little to prepared myself so no doubt I have forgotten to do something. Should anyone have any questions or suggestions for Saturdays celebration just drop me a comment or email. I can't wait to see you all and hope the weather will cooperate. Merry Christmas week to you all!
email me at doucette56@charter.net

Does your Christmas tree have clear lights or colored lights?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Updated Family Christmas Menu

Can you believe... Christmas eve is only 10 days away! I hope your shopping is done... you still have time to wrap everything. (I should know, my dining room is full of boxes & bags with gifts waiting to be wrapped.)

Here's the updated Christmas Menu for the 26th. If you haven't decided what you want to bring, there's still time to do so. Feel free to leave a comment on this post and we'll update the menu with your yummy treats. If you have a family member that doesn't check the blog, or get e-mails, could you please help us by being their online voice! We sure appreciate everyone's helping in making a wonderful family tradition so tasty! Much love to all! ~Dawn

Turkey - Aunt Mae & Uncle Doug - and it's a really big bird! 24+ lbs!
Ham - Mom a.k.a. Grandma to some of us! :)
Potatoes, mashed - The Merfeld Family
Potatoes, cheesy - Uncle Vince
Turkey Gravy - Aunt Mae & Uncle Doug
Stuffing (some)- Vince
Green Bean Casserole - Griepentrog Family
Corn - Dawn - I'll make Aunt Noreen's Corn Casserole from the Family cookbook!
Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole - Monica & Bill Tennie
Candied Yams -
Uncle Vince
Relish Tray & Dip - Audrey (with Noah's help)
Vegetables Vinaigrette - Amber & Matthew Fisher
Dessert (specify).............. ???

Bread/Rolls - Casey & Dylan
Butter - Storey Family
Coffee Creamer - Storey Family
Coffee - Amber & Matthew Fisher
Milk - Me
Appetizers -
Taco Dip - Rita - Thank you oodles & oodles! :)
Appetizer Surprise - Aunt Diane
Little Wieners/Little Smokies - Bill and maybe a surprise
Meatballs - Rita
Fudge - Amy & Greg
Ooy, Gooey Homemade Caramels - Diane -Thank you!
Double Fudge Brownies - Monica & Bill

What's your dish??? P.S. Don't forget to vote in our new poll... and feel free to upload pictures of your Christmas Trees and Christmas Decorations! We'd love to see all your hard work and the beauty as a result!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

"Here comes the snowstorm" by Video today -- Walworth County Today

Video on The Janesville Gazette's Website: "Here comes the snowstorm" by Video today -- Walworth County Today

For those that don't live in WI or MN... or like to see snow, but not live in it... here's a little taste of what we've been experiencing over the last 24 hours.

Just click the link above!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Family Christmas Menu Updates

Good Morning Everybody! So who woke up to a blanket of white this morning? (Bridget if you say you did, I'll think Justin lead the troops right to the flour cannister to "decorate" for the holidays!) :) We had just a dusting here, but it looked like the Madison area got several inches. Regardless, it's cold as the dickens everywhere.

I wanted to re-post the Christmas menu so it's fresh. This is the most updated version as of this morning. I'll keep an eye on the previous post and update in both places. I just wanted to make sure if people have the blog bookmarked in their computer that they don't have to hunt to find the posting about the X-mas menu. So here it is in all it's glory!

Turkey - Aunt Mae & Uncle Doug - and it's a really big bird! 24+ lbs!
Ham - Mom a.k.a. Grandma to some of us! :)
Potatoes, mashed - The Merfeld Family
Potatoes, cheesy - Uncle Vince
Turkey Gravy - Aunt Mae & Uncle Doug
Stuffing -
Green Bean Casserole - Griepentrog Family
Corn - Dawn - I'll make Aunt Noreen's Corn Casserole from the Family cookbook!
Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole - Monica & Bill Tennie
Candied Yams -
Uncle Vince
Relish Tray & Dip - Audrey (with Noah's help)
Vegetables Vinaigrette - Amber & Matthew Fisher
Dessert (specify).............. ???

Bread/Rolls - Casey & Dylan
Butter - Storey Family
Coffee Creamer - Storey Family
Coffee - Amber & Matthew Fisher
Milk -
Appetizers -
Taco Dip - Rita - Thank you oodles & oodles! :)
Appetizer Surprise - Aunt Diane
Little Wieners/Little Smokies -
Meatballs -
Fudge - Amy & Greg
Ooy, Gooey Homemade Caramels - Diane -Thank you!
Double Fudge Brownies - Monica & Bill

Please leave a comment with which dish you wish to share. We'll update the post when we get new items. You are welcome to bring something not on the menu of course. Just let us know and we'll add in your a la carte dish! We always have a wonderful gathering and I'm looking forward to seeing everyone. Thank you in advance to everybody for spending time over your busy Christmas Eve and Christmas Day to put together a special dish for the family to share!

Much love to all! XOXO,

P.S. With all the traditional Christmas Eve & Day dinners... who's up for doing Pizza? I'm just sayin... :)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Laugh With Me

I am having a very stress filled morning. I have been trying to get people to quit thinking I'm just another dumb woman. Ed has kindly stepped in for the automotive issue and I have become the support person. I however am dealing with the health insurance issue. Well after hearing a cute Ashlynn story Brenda said you sound tired go have a cup of coffee. I told her I already had 2 cups maybe I should eat something. After agreeing to eat some blueberries and yogurt I went to the kitchen. I found my 2 cups (yes different cups) sitting there full waiting for me. One was next to the fridge and one was on the table. I cannot believe that I poured 2 cups of coffee and thought I had drank them. Oh well that is what all you younguns have to look forward to. Now I am off to drink a cup of coffee. Have a good day all!
P.S. The Ashlynn sotry is that she came up to Brenda and said " nap mama" because she was tired. So she went down for a nap. How lucky she is to get 2 naps a day. I bet she doesn't forget to drink her milk.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving Weekend

Hi Fabulous Family! I just wanted to share a few pics from our Thanksgiving weekend.
Everyone watching the Packers vs. Lions game. Not the best day to be a Lions fan, huh Rob? After the game we sat down to a delicious turkey dinner with all the great sides and pies that go along with that (Mom/Grandma has those pics).

Huntington got real tired and found a quiet corner to take a nap. Huntington is the newest addition to Audrey's and Rob's household. He is a 3 month old Australian Shepherd, and he is adorable.
Sunday we went and cut down Christmas trees. It was a little chilly, but we managed to find 2 awesome trees. We also got to watch 2 guys carve tree trunks with chainsaws. That was very interesting.
Friday (picture not available), Mom, Monica and I had spa day at L-Spa in New Berlin. We each had a facial and manicure. It was awesome and very relaxing. I highly recommend spa day for everyone.
Saturday (also pic not avail for a very good reason) Audrey, Kimberly and I went to a couple bridal salons where the girls tried on wedding and bridesmaids dresses. We have found THE DRESS!!! Still working on bridesmaids dresses. However, the whole day was hugely fun!

Friday, November 27, 2009


Turkey - Aunt Mae & Uncle Doug... it's a big bird! 24+ lbs.
Ham -
Potatoes, mashed -
Potatoes, cheesy - Uncle Vince
Gravy - Aunt Mae
Stuffing -
Green Bean Casserole - Griepentrog Family
Corn - Dawn - I'll make Aunt Noreen's Corn Casserole from the Family cookbook!
Vegetable Vinaigrette - Amber & Matthew Fisher
Candied Yams -

Relish Tray & Dip - Audrey (with the help of Noah)
Dessert (specify).............. ???
Bread/Rolls - Casey & Dylan
Butter -
Coffee - Amber & Matthew Fisher
Milk -
Appetizers -
Taco Dip - Rita - Thank you oodles & oodles! :)
Appetizer Surprise - Aunt Diane
Little Wieners/Little Smokies -
Meatballs -
Fudge - Amy & Greg
Homemade Caramels - Diane -Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Hey Everybody! Here's the start to our Family Christmas Menu. Feel free to comment on this post for what you want to bring. We welcome items not specifically listed, so if you have a hankering to make something new or different, drop us a comment and we'll add it a la carte!

For those that don't have e-mail or access to the blog, can a family member please touch base with them and see what they wish to bring and we'll update the menu with those delightful blessings too? Thanks so much. You are also welcome to e-mail us your thoughts and planned menu additions and we'll happily update.

Everybody that is participating in the ornament exchange/gift exchange should have gotten their postcards in the mail! Have fun being creative and let your love shine!

Looking forward to drooling over this wonderful feast!
Julie & Dawn

P.S. We hope you enjoy the holiday music as we prepare for another wonderful Christmas together.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


It was brought to my attention that my most recent background was depressing. Gray outside AND a gray blog was depressing. So if I added to anyones gloom I am so sorry. Here is some cheery red, I hope it brightens your day. Love to all, Julie


Hi everyone! I hope everyone has a great family filled day. I would love to see pictures and hear any stories you wish to share about your Thanksgiving. We are having dinner here with whoever chooses to attend. I cooking today as much as I can and then in the wee hours of tomorrow morning I will be getting the stuffing and turkey ready for roasting. Smell good in here now almost can't wait until tomorrow. I count each and every one of you as a blessing and want to wish you all a safe and Happy Thanksgiving. Cheers, Julie

Saturday, November 21, 2009


I am soo sore. I just had yet again another surgery this past Wednesday the 18th. They did a scar revision on all my facial and neck scar tissue. They also re-broke my jaw to allign it better, and inserted another 2 plates. The total count now is 9 plates and 34 screws. My jaw is wired shut yet again for another 6 weeks and is a lot tighter this time. It truly is a pure-liquid diet this time. This unfortunately means no delicious turkey dinner or no christmas food from the Reindl Family Feast. Well, I just thought I would keep you updated!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Purple & Gold Jewelry

Oh happy day everybody! Glad to hear so many fun stories from those that went to Rachel's Bat Mitzvah! It really sounds like everybody had a great time. I want to say thanks to Meaghan for posting some great pictures on Facebook. Meaghan, you did a great job! I'd hire you as a photo journalist any day!! Especially with that great assistant Joey you had. Definitely an eye for unique perspectives! ;)

Over the weekend I designed a set of Jewelry that made me think of you Aunt Diane! This year your Minnesota Vikings are really making a statement - or two or three... none of which my Chicago Bears seem to be able to even understand. LOL So here's a link to my post on my jewelry blog

Aunt Diane I really wanted you to know I was thinking about you and looking forward to seeing you at Christmas! BTW - did everybody see our Christmas Countdown over to the right??? :) Just something fun to get you in the spirit. Keep your eyes on the Blog over the next couple of weeks so we can collectively work out our scrumptious dinner menu for our Christmas Feast!

As other people upload their Florida pictures, please feel free to post them on here... especially the ones that involve palm trees, sand, sunshine... none of which we are seeing here in WI today. LOL

Much love to all! Hope you have a great evening!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Happy Birthday Brenda!

I hope you enjoy your Birthday and all smiles your family puts on your face each day. You are a dedicated and giving Mom and I am so proud of you. Savor the memories of the romantic and delicious dinner you and Brian had last night, he is a great guy. It is so hard to believe that 23 years ago today I had my baby. Boy does time fly and I am not 23 years older only you are. hahaha
Happy Birthday, Love, Mom

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Dylan's Birthday!!!!!!! He's Going To Be 2!!!!!!

Dylan's birthday is on December 4th. The little bugger is going to be 2, I can't believe it. I just wanted to let everyone know if they want to send out cards or anything for him you can send them to the following address...............Dylan Mahlum........117. N. Main Street P.O. Box 95.................Leaf River, IL 61047..............Thanks!

Friday, November 6, 2009


We had a play date and Ashlynn helped me with the name drawing. I am writing out the postcards and will be sending them soon. Watch your mail and if you have an address new this year could you update me as soon as possible. Thanks Julie

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A few more pictures

Liam getting his fair share of Trick or Treat kisses... and let me tell you, he didn't give any of us special "tricks." ;)

I got a few really cute pictures while Grandma & Grandpa Reindl were down too that I wanted to add to the Happy Halloween wishes.

Ashlynn was making a small pot of "Oatmeal."
Everything is oatmeal to Ashlynn... and she was telling Uncle Greg her special recipe.

Then she fed to to Grandpa & Greg for lunch....
well, not really. But it did look that way!

Hope everybody has a safe trip down to Jacksonville next week!
Take lots of photos and share them here on the blog when you get back!
Love to all!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Great Grandparents

Happy November everyone! I hope all you headed to Florida have started to make your lists of what to pack. I'm sure no ones list is as long as Jeff and Marcy's to get every loose end tied so they can enjoy the special weekend with Rachel and all of you. Remember "Prepare now and you will have more fun playing later".
I have a few pictures of yesterday when Mom and Dad came to meet Liam.
Have a great week and Marcy I wish I could be there to give you a hand I love to make lists and follow them.

Friday, October 30, 2009


I want everyone to feel like they are part of Dylan's life so here are some everyday videos of Dylan being the vivacious and personality filled little boy that he is. Oh for the Gap Casting Call you can do a search and if you put in casandrandylan is should bring it right up.

Been a long year!

So much has since December 2008. Dylan turns 1 and has one of the worst 1st b-days because mommy was in the ER throwing up uncontrollably from food poisening. Then I find out my mom made the worst mistake of her life by leaving the father thats been in my life through my most important years...you all know him as my daddy Bill. I WANT TO JUST SAY, NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS BETWEEN THEM, YOU ALL ARE MY FAMILY AND BILL WILL ALWAYS BE MY FATHER. I LOVE YOU ALL AND LOVE THE RESPECT AND LOVE YOU HAVE SHOWN ME. Then on March 2nd, 2009 my real father Dean passed away of heart enlargement 12 hours after I spoke with him and he was fine. After attending the funeral that broke my heart, I had a near fatal car accident that changed my life. I suffered a broken jaw in 4 places, as well as other broken facial bones, and a broken femur in two places. My life still hasn't been put completely back together. I realized my marriage was no longer healthy, so at the end of June I left my husband. There are some positives though. Dylan is running around and saying more words than we thought he could catch on to. I have met a handsome, sweet man names Jayson, who most of you met at the Corn Fest get together. We have been doing very well, just taking things one day at a time which is what I should have done the first time. I am now working at a small ma and pop restaurant called the Country Leaf Cafe' as well as my most recent job working part-time at Aeropostale. With Halloween right around the corner, My lil man unfortunately is going to be with his father, but momma got him the most adorable cowboy costume. Oh, on November 20Th I will be undergoing another surgery for scar revision from the accident. They will be cutting off the scar tissue to make the marks less noticeable. Well I will keep in touch I promise. CONGRATULATIONS BRENDA, LIAM IS SO HANDSOME! Oh one more thing, Dylan has been entered in the 2009 Gap Casting Call. So if you all could go to google.com and type in "gap casting call" and click on the first thing that comes up find his picture and vote for him as the fan favorite. They will pick 12 or 14 kids to be chosen. The top picture is the one I used! Thank You!

Meeting the newest Storey

Hi everyone! Kelly and Joey came to Burlington to to meet Liam. We had so much fun seeing Joey hold Liam and marvel at his small size. It is always so nice when someone takes the time from their busy schedule to share in your joy. I want to share these pictures so you too can feel the love and warmth they brought to Brenda's family. The table is a memory filled table used by the Reindl kids and now LOVED by Ashlynn. She is eating and playing at the table when she is not pretending in Joey's toy box. Enjoy your weekend and the colors of fall.

Monday, October 26, 2009

We Need You!

Alrighty family members and friends, we need your help, suggestions, input, expertise, and your opinion (oh yeah I know you have one).  We are in wedding planning mode here in Michigan, but we're planning a wedding in Wisconsin.  Date?  We are shooting for August 28, 2010, but also considering August 21st or September 4.  Where?  The Madison or Milwaukee area - outdoor ceremony, indoor reception.  How many?  Probably around 200 people.

Who do you know, what do you know, how do you feel?  We would love to hear from you regarding ceremony and reception locations, catering, photography, florists - all things wedding related. Time is of the essence, especially regarding the venue options.  We REALLY would GREATLY appreciate any feedback!  

We look forward to hearing from each and everyone of you.  Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for helping us plan this very special day!


Audrey - Mrs. Jude-to-be
Rita - Mother of the Bride :)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

He's Here... He's Here!

Yes, for those that aren't on the Urgent Baby Calling System, Brenda had her baby this morning.

Both mom and baby are doing wonderfully as are Dad & Big Sister Ashlynn. The birthing process went really quick and I have to say... Brenda looked relaxed and beautiful when I visited her in the hospital... seriously, if I didn't see her ID bracelet and a newborn I'd think she was on vacation and not a new mom again. LOL

Just look at this beautiful picture:

Okay, just joking... That's a well rested Auntie Dawn that had no clue she'd become an auntie overnight. Seriously, I went to bed and Brenda was home, not feeling anything exciting going on. Then BAM... phone rings at 6:45 this morning and Liam has arrived! :)

Liam Andrew Storey was born at 3:25 a.m. on 10/20/2009
He was 7 lbs. 7 oz. and was 20" long

Just wanted to share with everybody! If you'd like to see more baby pictures, I just uploaded some to Walgreen's for Grandma to pick up. So anytime after 5:07 pm today when they pick them up, you can call Grandma and Grandpa and see if they are around for you to see.

Hope everybody's evenings are wonderful and full of love! We're so blessed to have such a wonderful family.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Noah's football

Hi all,

Noah played his last football game this weekend. We traveled to New Glarus for a 9:00 am game (we had to get up really early, at least for Noah). Noah played great! They won 26-0. There record this year was 1 win, 1 tie, 4 loses. I am happy then ended the year with a win.

The other 7th grade team has a game this Saturday, so Noah has practice on Monday and Thrusday to help get the other team ready for their game.

Have a great week!



So Rob and I had a big weekend. We got a new puppy friday and when I got home and saw him he had a little black box with a ribbon around his neck that held a diamond ring. So we are now engaged and planning a wedding for late Aug. early Sept. We are really excited and are having so much fun with the new puppy. Maggie still doesn't know what to think but she will warm up to him soon enough. His name is Huntington because Huntington Beach is were Rob and I used to work in California. He is an Australian Shepherd. Here are some pictures for your enjoyment. Hope everyone had a great week! Love you and may God Bless you!!


Thursday, October 15, 2009

I had another one of those moments

Good Morning everyone.I have something I want to share with you all this morning. I had one of those money saving and memory moments yesterday and I can't keep it to myself. Have you ever heard of ALDI grocery store? Well I went there yesterday for the second time but the first time alone. Do you cook or maybe you microwave? Well with some training you can become an expert Aldi shopper. First you need a quarter and either debit card or green cash. The quarter will get you your cart(yes you get it back when you put your cart back). You need to take your recycled bags or green bags to bag your groceries and admire your savings again. The food is good and the prices are even better. You can be a cook or a microwaver or even just a salad and sandwich person. It is a great store for every kind of eater. So I went and got my groceries yesterday and had one of those "When I was 12 moments". I remember going with Mom to this place in Madison that sold dented canned food by the case. Mom always had her white envelope of money at home and took the cash to the dented canned store and we went shopping. We get to the store and go in pick out our cases. Mom must have paid for it because we took it to the car and loaded up and went home. Now for the fun part. When we got home we took the cases to the basement where the pantry was waiting. I loved unpacking the boxes and arranging them on the shelves. I got that feeling as I walked through the store as I saw the food displayed on pallets and not white shelves. FYI: Aldi is not like the case selling warehouse but it does save you money with quality food. Now the moral of the story is: You never know what life skills you will gain by arranging canned goods on a shelf. Organization is Priceless.
Have a great day and organize a drawer. Julie

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Our New Home!

Welcome to our new home modeled by Ashlynn.

If you are doing any Fridge or Oven updates...please donate your box to the Storey Family. We would really like to add an addition to our home.
(just kidding- But I did find my lost camera adapter so REAL pictures coming soon)

Have a good day everyone! :-)

Friday, October 9, 2009

Good Morning it's Fall

Hi all! I just thought I would share a little smile for your cool Friday morning. Ashlynn and Grandpa like to share ice cream, and we finally took time to take a picture. She actually licks the treat and Grandpa catches the drips and takes a bite too. Have a great fall weekend.

BTW I am still waiting on a couple of answers and then I will do the Christmas drawing. If you have changed your mind and want to be added or dropped let me know it is not too late.


Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Another wonderful day full of wonderful birthdays!!! Many happy returns to Dawn, Joey and Kiah (sure hope I spelled your name right, Kiah!) :) No doubt you ALL make your moms proud and overjoyed to have you in this world! What a fabulous day THIS is!! love to you all ~

Monday, September 28, 2009


HAPPY BIRTHDAY, NICHOLAS!! I can't believe 22 years have passed since you first graced us with your presence...and quite honestly, I can tell you...we haven't had a boring day YET!! I hope you have a fun day, even though you have a few classes you have to go to. Just know we're thinking of you and can't wait to celebrate with all of us around!! You rock, and I MEAN that!!

lots of love, ~mom

p.s. Thanks to YOU, I can call MYself Mom :)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Your Opinion Counts!

Please read carefully and cast your vote in the poll on the right!

My mom and dad (Julie & Ed) put this beautiful deck off their kitchen last summer. It a very comfortable deck that overlooks a park-like backyard and offers plenty of space for our family to BBQ and play tiddlywinks - if you can keep the chips from falling between the cracks. LOL

At this point, after letting the deck weather for a year like they are supposed to, they have chosen a beautiful stain and Dad stained the railing and the spindles. Now at this point, they are looking for opinions. Should they stain the floor with the same stain, or leave it natural wood? It is treated wood, so they could leave it natural.

What do you think? Please take a moment to cast your vote in the poll on the right. I know Ma & Pa sure do appreciate it. Have a wonderful day all!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

More Pictures from the August Family Gathering

As promised, I said I'd bring you more pictures from the August Birthday Parties, so here there are. :) (I haven't been delinquent, I've just really been enjoying everybody else's pictures, posts and loving news.)

This is our family bodyguard... way to fend off the strangers Aunt Diane! :)

Isn't it wonderful to see the Merfeld's are equal opportunty baby lovers?!?! ;)

It sure was beautiful, and looking at the pictures again reminds me every day of how lucky we are to have such a diverse, loving, wonderful family!

Have a wonderful day everybody! Love you!


Monday, September 14, 2009

Monday Giggles

Good Monday Morning, Recently Ashlynn was at our house playing and well Grandmas toys have gotten quite boring to her. Being creative as all little ones are she made good use of non toys and made a game for herself. I am still anxiously awaiting the day she figures out how to open the peanut butter and paint with it(like Amy and Greg did). Enjoy your week and the wonderful weather and say a prayer for Pat Joneses family as they go through this difficult time.

Peace, Prayers and Laughs to all. Julie

Monday, September 7, 2009


BREAKING NEWS -- Noah Gregory Named Independent Contractor with Hometown News Group!

Hometown News is proud to announce that Noah J. Gregory has decided to join them as their newest independent contractor in DeForest, WI.

Noah J. Gregory

Noah has shown great maturity and a willingness to get the job done in a responsible manner, which is why he has been chosen for this position. Says Kelly Reindl, the circulation manager for DeForest, "Noah brings with him an excellent family background of newspaper people. His sisters were always quite helpful with routes and his mom also knows her way around a newspaper delivery route!"

Noah is always happy to deliver the paper AND a smile! He's always available to help out other citizens of DeForest to make his community a better place. Hometown News looks forward to seeing great things from Mr. Gregory and hopes he enjoys spending his paychecks as well!

Hometown News Group is an independent newspaper printer that proudly serves 13 rapidly growing areas around central and southeastern Wisconsin. For all of your latest community news, classifieds or to inquire about a position with advancement opportunities like Noah Gregory, please feel free to visit the Hometown News Group website.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Happy Labor Day Weekend!

Mmm, Reindls are cooking Johnsonville Brats!

I think I can speak for many of us when I say how wonderful it was to see everybody that was able to make it to Grandma's Birthday party over Cornfest weekend. We are so blessed the weather was absolutely perfect for a spectacular event!

We are equally so fortunate that so many people were able to come. It was great seeing you Aunt Diane & Quincy. It was wonderful seeing Audrey & meeting Rob as well. Glad everybody had safe travels! :)

We take our Beanbag toss VERY Seriously!

I took several pictures from the day (these are just a few), but here's the funniest part:
- It was Grandma's birthday and I somehow didn't get one single picture of her.
- It was cornfest weekend and I don't have any pictures of people eating corn (I know, so disappointing) LOL

I did get some corny pictures on Grandma's camera though, so when she develops the film, all the incriminating evidence will be there! I have several more pictures, but thought it would be fun to space them out a few days so you can enjoy these! If you'd like the pictures on a CD, I'd be happy to pop one in the mail to you. Just spam my e-mail dawndoucette@charter.net with your request and address and I'll send it out!!

It's supposed to be a beautiful Labor Day weekend for those of us in the Midwest! I hope you get a chance to enjoy it and have fun in whatever your plans are!

Much love to all!

P.S. Did you know that in Ohio, the game of bean bag toss is called "Corn Holing" Because their beanbags are filled with feed corn! I have a friend in Ohio that told me that a few years back, and I about p... well we'll just leave it at "I thought it was the funniest sounding name ever." :) Just your bit of trivia for the day!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Hi everyone!!

Great to see so many people at Mom and Dad's on Sunday! If I would have been next door to their house, I would have looked in the backyard and thought the Corn Fest was THERE!!!

Happy Birthday to Mom (Gramma) and to Meaghan !!! I can still remember 19 years ago, dropping Nick and Josh off at Mom's house in the morning (for the Reindl August birthday party!) and driving away to go and have Meaghan at the hospital :) It was fun to watch the little guys hop up Gramma and Grampa's front steps, jump into the house and Gramma wave good-bye to us, wondering if her "birthday buddy" was going to be a boy or a girl :)

God bless Mom and Dad for babysitting that day...can't imagine trying to have another baby with two kids under two in the hospital room!! And I still can remember the first time Josh and Nick looked at Meaghan and thought, "What the heck is Mom bringing home NOW??!!"

Mom, thanks for all the things you do for me, like weeding the garden when you are walking past the house and you can't take it anymore, letting me know that I left my front porch light on again and advising me that after living in our home for four months, I really SHOULD buy front curtains ! :)

Meaghan, how lucky I am to have you for a daughter! You make me want to be a better person and volleyball player, especially since you have been subbing on my two volleyball teams all summer long!!! How in the world did you learn to become such a fabulous player??!!! I enjoy your helping me try to be healthier this summer, and also how you look after your own health and well being, like...when I mention to you a little ailment I am having, and the first thing you ask me in your most nurturing and caring voice, "Hey, is THAT hereditary??!" You make me most proud, however, when I see you checking out the clearance racks while shopping and holding up something with a little rip, that's like $40 OFF the sale price saying "Hey, do you think Gramma can sew this??!!!"

I seriously don't know what I would do without either of you in my life. Many, many happy birthdays and thanks for MANY cherished memories...


(that's mom to you, Meaghan...)

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Our Friday night

Hi all, just wanted to share what the Gregory family does on a Friday night. I had to work late and arrived home around 7:00 pm. Waiting for me were Noah, Kimberly and Rita. I had promised Noah we would go to the Pre-played video store earlier in the week (Noah reminded me at 6 pm when he called me at work!)

Off the four of us went. To the pre-played store for Noah to get a game then to dinner. Well, three blocks from home we decided (3 against 1) to skip the video game store and go to dinner. (Note: Noah and I went to the game store Saturday morning, so my promise was only delayed for a day.)

We drove to Cross Plains to have dinner at Monk's. This restaurant is situated in "downtown" Cross Plains next to the restaurant/bar Kimberly is working/managing at. The place isn't opened yet - I will let Kimberly blog all about that .... hint, hint, hint.

Needless to say they won't have much competition. I had the fish and it was OK, Rita's baked fish was OK, Kimberly's chicken wasn't that good nor was Noah's mini-corn dogs. I always thought mini-corn dogs were labeled such due to the size, but it is the portion!

Meal was eaten, bill paid and off we go. I recently purchased a speed board sign at work. I put it up for the first time this weekend and I wanted to see how it worked at night. So, we took the long way home for me to drive by the sign. On the way there we drove by Vitense and decided to stop and play some mini-golf. It has been over 15 years since I have been to that place - my it has changed. We had a good time mini-golfing and I remembered a while back Rita saying she has never gone to a batting cage to bat balls. So, I thought it would be a good idea to bat some balls - what the heck. Between the 4 of us we batted (or at least had thrown at us) 140 baseball/softballs.

We were on our last couple of tokens and what does Rita do but get hit by a softball. I know, how does one do that? Only my dearest Rita can! Now, you are thinking she got wacked in the head - no that didn't happen. The ball hit her thumb and bent her finger nail all the way back! OUCH! Poor girl is going to lose that nail.

We limp Rita back to the car. I am sure this occured because now it is 11:00 pm, WAY past her bedtime. We took a drive past my speed board sign (I didn't forget.) Then Noah wanted to see a few parts of the town where I work. So, I drove my family through a few areas in the Town. Greg - we waved at your place of employment - just so you know.

Back home around midnight - Noah straight to bed, but the rest of us aren't that smart. We stayed up a while longer. Kimberly, of course, was just getting her night started and left around 1:00 am to have some MORE fun. We didn't go to be until 2:00 am (see, we aren't old!)

I hope you made it through this extremely long post to get to the one paragraph that was funny. But, now I must go and turn on the pre-game and start making some Nachos for the game.

Can't wait to see everyone Sunday - the weather should be perfect!!!!!!!!


Monday, August 17, 2009

WI State Fair

As you may have already read in my comment to Dawn's Post, I went to the State Fair on Saturday. I went with a friend of mine, and her boyfriend. We enjoyed music by Madison County, The Toys, and about 5 minutes of The Now (that was all we could handle). We also enjoyed the weather and the food. For those of you that don't know Madison County, they are a country band out of, well you guessed it Madison. They actually have 3 CD's out and every now and then you can catch one of thier songs on Q106 in Madison. Did anyone else make it to the State Fair?

On Sunday I went and visited with Mom, Dad, Brenda and Ashlynn at Mom's house. And then I had the priviledge of going out and seeing the Storey Families new home. I'll let Brenda fill you in on all that when she has some time. Brenda and Brain I am soo proud of both of you!!

While visiting with Ashlynn, I did some Ashlynn aerobics, and I have to say, I am a bit sore today. I was lifting her above my head and she was smiling and giggling. What a hoot. Ashlynn is quite the entertainer.

Carissa and Jesse, are you going to be at Grandma's on Sunday? I haven't met Pyper yet. And I think it would be fun to watch Ashlynn and Pyper play. I hope to see you there.

I'm looking forward to seeing everyone on Sunday, have a great week!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Food on a Stick, Animal Smells... what could it be?

Polly Want a Cracker???

Well, Aunt Rita, have you recovered from your wii-pisode with your personal trainer??? I hope you and the virtual dude are getting along better now... can't we all be friends? LOL

Yesterday Chris & I just took a day off... we've been plugging away on our computers for hours on end, months on end and just needed a break. It was a beautiful, sunny day, so we opted to give State Fair all of our un-divided attention! It was GREAT!!!!

We saw baby lambs... and they are so cute. Saw the baby goats too... I still want a goat... someday I'll have my pet goat. We ate plenty of fried food and drank our "fair" share of fresh squeezed lemonade... you should see the refillable cups this year... they have a HUGE 64 oz. gallon size. Now that's crazy. Personally, I wouldn't have wanted to carry that around all day! We of course indulged in the required cream puff and opted to skip the chocolate covered bacon.

It really was a beautiful day. We could both act like kids and people watch. Lots of Laughs and absolutely no stress! It was bliss!

Hope you get a chance over the weekend to experience bliss... be thankful for what we have!

Love to all!


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Me and my WII

So, I've been trying to work out on a regular basis lately - going to the gym, hitting the treadmill, working on the nautilus, and doing my bender ball and Wii Fit at home. Well, I'd earned enough points on my Wii that it gave me a new yoga pose! Yeah for me! So, I click on the new pose right away because, like my daughter Audrey, I am very impatient and want everything right now! The trainer warns me that this is an advanced pose and I may want to practice the easier poses before trying this. I immediately dismiss that notion because I am sure I can do it.

I manage to get into something resembling the pose the trainer is doing, and I say, "Rita, you are awesome!" Shortly thereafter, I lost my balance and fell off the board (please feel free to laugh, you won't hurt my feelings). I regain my balance and I am contemplating getting back on to try again when the trainer guy says, "Hey! Where'd you go? I know you fell off the board." I stick my tongue out at him and get back on. I don't even attempt to get back into the correct pose, I just stand on one leg until the time runs out. After the time runs out, the trainer lets me know again that he knows I fell off the board and then tells me that I am not ready for this pose and I need to practice the beginner poses more before attempting this pose again. I have officially been reprimanded by a computer generated personal trainer.

Quite frankly, I can hardly wait to try again to see if he's gonna make some smart alec comment again, like "Ooooh hot shot, back again? Think you'll be able to stay on the board this time? Maybe you should change your name to Grace - NOT!" When I get this pose down, I'm gonna tell this guy off!

Hope y'all have a great day!

P.S. Let this serve as proof that nothing is too menial or silly for our family blog - anything goes.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Frozen corn adventure

Hi, me again. (I warned you!)
I took Friday off and Noah and I went to Reedsburg to visit my parents and do a task. The local grocery store owner (Viking Village, my very first employer) grows his own sweet corn. They were selling the corn for $1.00 a dozen with a limit of 3 dozen each. I stopped and picked up 3 dozen, Mom went to the store to get her 3 as did Dad and my brother.

After visiting for a while we husked the 12 dozen ears of corn. We ate lunch of hot dogs, brats and corn (surprise!). Then we boiled the rest of the corn and cooled it off, cut it, bagged and froze it in freezer bags. This was Noah's first time to freeze corn. He said he was really bored husking corn and helping with the cooking and freezing part. But, this evening we had a bag (all bags we made were about 12 oz) of the corn. He was very proud of his work and loved his frozen corn!

About 3:00 pm we decided to head home and get home before my beautiful wife. Noah and I decided to drive through downtown Dells to see what was going on. Holy cow were they busy! We were on the bridge over the WI River and I said to Noah, "What were we thinking coming this way." Then ....... BOOM, we were re-ended by some young kid in his parents very nice and fairly new SUV.

Thank God we were driving my beater truck we bought earlier this year (see a previous blog). This kids car had well over $4,000 in damage and his bumper and front grill were ripped off. My truck on the other hand had the bumper moved about 1/2 inch. Good 'ol American technology of building vehicles with metal and not plastic! (We'll see what the body shop says about getting the bumper fixed.)

Noah was very exited about this accident (he has been in more than I have now I think!) He could remember exactly what happened.

Hope everyone is staying cool this weekend. Have an ice tea and thank God noone was hurt in our crash!


Wednesday, August 5, 2009


Sorry for my absence. I had issues logging into my blogger account - but all is fixed now and here I come!! My beautiful Rita was suppose to post this earlier, but she didn't so here I am.

We have a new addition! No Rita is not joining the crowd and having a baby, we have a new puppy. We picked him up last week Friday. Can you guess his name?

Right! Great job! It's Lambo. He is a little dog, no Great Dane for me :-( but he is cute as heck.

I have attached a one minute video showing the cute little bugger. Enjoy.

Note: please read Rita's response I am sure she has so much more to say, but she went to bed early to get up at 5 am with her new little baby.


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

A smile a day...

Good Morning, Good Morning... I woke up this morning needing an extra smile... So I went to my computer and downloaded the pics I took on Thursday when Ashlynn, Mom & Brenda came over. Ashlynn loved playing with Cody & Brandi... and really got a kick out of running a circle through the Kitchen, Dining Room and Entry Way.

Because I needed a smile, this one worked just as prescribed, I thought maybe somebody else may need a smile too... and I love sharing! So here's a smile for everybody! While I'll be enjoying the heat & humidity today (I've been waiting for this all summer!!!) I know many of you (Mom & Brenda) will probably be swearing at me. LOL Don't worry, I can handle it... I've got strong shoulders! :)

Hope everybody is having a Terrific Tuesday! Smiles & Love to all!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

What's New at the Rusu and Jude house...

So Rob and I are pretty busy people.  We have been working like crazy all summer so I figured I would share some of the things we've been up to. To kick off the summer we went to LA to visit our friends and all of the places we love so much! We had a great time and will be back again soon.  Then for Kim's bday, a.k.a the 4th of July, we went to my aunt Danella's beautiful lake house in Minoqua,WI and went boating and spent time with family all weekend. Then literally a week and a half later we were in Branson, Mo for my family vaca with my daddy's side of the family.  From there we went to Vegas for Robert's 30th bday were we got bottle service at Jet nightclub at the Mirage hotel! We just returned back home a week and a half to a empty house because well we were gone the two friends we had renting out rooms finally moved out.  So now we are sanding and staining all of our cabinets and wood floors.  We are getting there but I have to say my patients is being tested because I always want things done right away.  The next step is furniture for our living room and kitchen.  So all in all the Lord has blessed with all that we get to do and have!!  Rob's Jazz bar will be opening up by fall so that will be another project and crazy time! There are some pics from our trips for you to enjoy!  Hope everyone is well and may the Lord bless you and keep you safe!!!!
 Love Audrey and Rob (people always say Rob and Audrey but I think my name should come first haha)