Anniversary Trip — Iceland

Posted May 14th, 2017 in Events, Family, Janelle, Josh, Trips by Janelle

The last leg of our trip was to Iceland. This wasn’t originally part of our travel plan, but when I booked award travel on Icelandair, I decided to extend our trip just a bit to do a stopover.


This was the VRBO that we rented for the 4 nights we stayed in Iceland. If I could do it all over I would have not had Reykjavik as our home base, but rather traveled to other places to stay. Going back to the city made for a lot of driving which prevented us from getting to a couple places I wanted to.

The first evening we found some dinner, found our VRBO, and found a grocery store. Right away we had complete sticker shock of the cost of food in Iceland. We paid $10 for a dozen eggs, a small box of Cheerios was over $10, just 1 orange was $5, and a $5 footlong at Subway was $13. All food was at least twice if not 3X more expensive than here.

Our first full day we toured the Golden Circle. First stop was Þingvellir National Park.


The park sits in a rift valley caused by the separation of 2 tectonic plates, and the oldest existing parliament in the world first assembled there in 930 AD. Þingvellir has for this reason been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Next stop was Efstidalur. It’s a farm with a hotel and restaurant. We stopped for ice cream and it was literally the best thing I ate on that island.


It was pretty fun to sit and eat your homemade ice cream and look out the window right at the cow that produced the milk.


On to our Brúarfoss adventure. This waterfall is not very public and you kind of have to hike a little ways to find it. We found it and the blue water was so amazing.



Strokkur Geysir is the geysir for which all other geysirs are named after. It’s the original.


The sheer size of Gullfoss is what is most impressive.


Last stop of the day was at Secret Lagoon/Gamla Laugin.


The next day was more driving to Snaefellsnes Peninsula. Some highlights included:

Gerðuberg Cliffs — The cliff is made of basalt columns that form geometric patterns.

Gatklettur, Arnarstapi




Hvalfjarðargöng — A road tunnel under the Hvalfjörður fjord in Iceland and a part of Route 1. It is 6 kilometers long and reaches a depth of 541 feet below sea level

On our last full day, instead of driving out to South Iceland, we stayed in Reykjavik. First we walked past the sculpture Sólfarið – Sun Voyager.


Then to Harpa, concert hall, which was a beautiful modern and geometric building.



And we wandered up to Hallgrimskirkja, a church, and one of the city’s best-known landmarks.


It was Good Friday, so we weren’t allowed inside, but we came back Saturday morning before leaving town to head inside for a peek.


On Saturday, our last day, we headed out of town. We took the long way to the airport and stopped at Krýsuvík Geothermal Area.



After 10 days of celebrating 10 years, we were totally ready to get back to the boys (and girls) at home. We had a great time in Europe but really missed the family we created over the last 10+. Looking forward to the next 10!

Happy Birthday Lucy!

Posted April 30th, 2017 in Events, Four Legs by Janelle


Yesterday, our first-born fur-baby turned 11. We love this animal so much. To celebrate she spent some time on squirrel patrol in the backyard, had some canned “Sunday Dinner”, a poodle puff from the Lulu & Luigi dog bakery, and some quiet snuggle time. Happy birthday little girl!

Arlo’s First Haircut

Posted September 10th, 2016 in Arlo, Events by Janelle



Arlo had his first haircut tonight courtesy of Auntie Christine!

Arlo’s Baptism

Posted December 6th, 2015 in Arlo, Events, Family by Janelle

Today we celebrated Arlo’s baptism.




Arlo Joshua Tubbs

Posted October 14th, 2015 in Arlo, Events, Family by Janelle


Arlo Joshua was born Saturday, October 3rd at 11:41am. He weighed in at 9 pounds 7 ounces and measured 21.5 inches long. He has been a really good baby for us so far, eating and sleeping well. Warner is adjusting well, and has even decided to share one of his hockey sticks with Arlo.

BNSF Family Day

Posted August 1st, 2015 in Events, Family, Our City, Outside by Janelle

At the end of June we were invited to the BNSF Family Day in Fridley by Ryan’s step-dad Dave.


Warner was pretty into the blue engine that they applied a face to, to look like Thomas.


It was fun to see some of the trains up close. They had a couple engines open so you could go in them.


Needless to say, we’ve had our wooden tracks up and trains out at home a lot since the Family Day!

Au Gratin Open 2015

Posted June 7th, 2015 in Events, Golf, Josh, Traditions by Josh

Last weekend, Matt and I hosted our annual golf tournament, The Au Gratin Open. We invite a bunch of guys down to Albert Lea for a 54 hole one day tourney at Wedgewood Cove. The format is “best ball with yourself” where each player plays the course three times and takes the best score on each hole to make their best 18 hole score.

This year’s champ is Matt with a score of six under par. He started out strong shooting one under on his back nine in his first round. We use an app on our phones to keep track of our scores in real time. Below is our champ checking the leader board confirming his win.


Despite some wind, scores were pretty low with three players getting under par.


Every year we have a champions dinner the night before. Traditionally, we have played street hockey, usually resulting in all of us getting too hot and sweaty. This year, Matt bought a Sauce Toss game for us to play. The goal of the game is to shoot a hockey puck from one board to the other. Points are scored when the puck goes into either the one point net or the smaller three point net. We had a ton of fun playing this game. Some of the highlights include; Mark’s game winning three point shot that landed off the board, jumped up and sneaked past Forsman who attempted to defend his net and my dominating performance vs. Matt who had been talking significant trash the week before the event.


Thanks Matt and Brie for hosting. Looking forward to next year!

Tubbaby II

Posted May 25th, 2015 in Events, Family, Janelle, Josh, Life, Pregnancy, Warner by Janelle

That’s right. We’re excited to welcome Tubbaby II, due September 30th.


With Warner, we decided to find out his gender and keep it a secret to ourselves. This time around we chose to have the ultrasound technician write down the gender for us and we kept it in an envelop. Then we opened it with some family, last Sunday.


Turns out, Warner will have a little brother!!

Pippa is 3!

Posted December 14th, 2014 in Events, Four Legs by Janelle


We can’t believe our little girls is already 3 years old today!

Happy Birthday to Me…

Posted October 15th, 2014 in Events, Trips by Janelle

Went to Chicago kid free!

Since we went to California for Josh’s birthday, I thought, “Hey, I want to go somewhere for my 30th!” So last weekend we headed down to Chicagoland for the long weekend.


We stayed at our neighbors’ condo that they still own in the Lakeview East neighborhood. This was the view of Lincoln Park, Near North and The Loop from the rooftop deck.

We arrived into Midway on Thursday. While the flight was a short hour, it took about the same amount of time to take the train across town to the condo. We spent the afternoon in the neighborhood and at Lincoln Park relaxing and enjoying the view.


We had dinner at a Diners Drive-ins and Dives restaurant just a couple blocks away at Chilam Balam. They served Mexican Tapas small plates and it was fantastic.

Friday was a full day. First, we took a deep-dish pizza making class at Pizzeria Uno. They were the original creators of the deep dish pizza. They teach the class before the shop opens, so nothing like pizza and beer at 10am!



Since neither of us have spent any time in Chicago, stopping at Navy Pier was a must. Our general rule is to only hit up tourist locations the first time we visit a place. Plus, it was the perfect place to find a magnet for our collection.


We didn’t stay long. I bought tickets to David Bowie Is, an exhibit produced by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, with items from David Bowie’s personal collection at the Museum of Contemporary Art.

Then, with a tip from the class teacher at UNO (to not pay $36 to visit the observation deck level only 1 floor higher), we headed up to the Signature Lounge in the John Hancock building. Unfortunately it was happy hour and it was super busy. There was no way we were going to get a table at the window, so we took the elevator back down.

On Saturday, we slept in a bit. Now that’s a luxury with a 15 month old! Our first stop of the day was The Field Museum. The highlight was Sue, the largest, most complete, well-preserved, t.Rex skeleton ever found. She was on display right in the main concourse.



Then we made our way to Millennium Park to see the Cloud Gate. Probably better know as the The Bean, it’s a large bean shaped sculpture with a mirror finish. At this point on Saturday, the rest of Grant Park was closed due to the Chicago Marathon the next day. That also meant that all the tourist locations were crazy busy.



Then, we got out of that area. Too many people.

Saturday night we tried another deep-dish pizza at Bacino’s in Lincoln Park. We went there with my friend Keri, who now lives in Chicagoland. Then we went to a comedy show at The Second City. The Second City is famous club with alumni including Joan Rivers, John Belushi, Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Andy Dick, Jane Lynch, Mike Myers, Chris Farley, Tim Meadows, Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert, Amy Poehler, Rachel Dratch, Adam McKay, Tina Fey and Horatio Sanz. Whoa.

It was a late night. Then an early morning, Sunday, when we were woken up by people cheering for the marathoners. The route went right pass us on Sheridan.


We were pretty much trapped until the last people came through and roads opened back up around 11am.

Sunday afternoon we took the train out to Oak Park to the Frank Llyod Wright Home and Studio.


The home was restored to how things would have appeared in 1906 and the details were beautiful.


The wood-carved, parchment paper-lined dining room light fixture.


Tulip pattern glass window.


Children’s playroom skylight.


Master bedroom wall painting.


Studio cast bronze.

All in all it was a great way to celebrate my 30th birthday. Chicago was a lovely city, but we were happy to get back to our little city.