Lean in, young lady: Take our daughter to work day

Since my main office is a home office, I feel like our kids are with me at work every day. Especially in the summer.

But today was a rare chance to take our youngest to one of my company’s offices, and I hope she learned a few things. Look out, world, this generation of women will change us all…for the better.

1. Go ahead, be assertive

So what if some call it bossy? She picked our breakfast and lunch locations. A lovely walk to Dakota Harvest Bakery for cinnamon rolls. Then Rhombus Guys’ rooftop, on a gorgeous summer day!

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rhombus-guys

2. Take credit for your accomplishments

Cara mastered the label machine, re-organized the office supply room, created “Best mom in the world” awards and a sweet packet of notes and pictures for her Gram, Gramps, their dog and cat. She proudly distributed them in person.

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3. Be bold

Apparently my powerpoint presentation was “boring,” since she turned to her iPad instead. But she did comment that she liked the colors I chose.

 4. Own your space

Take a seat at the table–or the pilot seat of a rocket ship. Listen, tune in, then contribute. And make others feel part of the action. Way to go, Cara! You’ll be a great colleague someday. Today, you already were. Rock on and lean in.

diet coke break

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My bucket overfloweth: MLB All Star Week

One of the events of MLB All Star Week has been on my bucket list: See the Home Run Derby live. But after this week, my bucket list is overflowing with other amazing adventures. What a great show, Minnesota. So proud of you!

Midwesterners are paranoid about two things: Our losing sports teams. And our weather. It rained Monday, delaying the Home Run Derby by 1 hour. But then this gorgeous rainbow appeared and all was right with the world!
Midwesterners are paranoid about two things: Our losing sports teams. And our weather. It rained Monday, delaying the Home Run Derby by 1 hour. But then this gorgeous rainbow appeared and all was right with the world!

First up: Futures game and Celebrity softball game

Sunday afternoon, good old Tom Kelly, Bert Blyleven and Tony O managed the “Futures” stars in a World vs. USA game. This was, surprisingly, one of my favorite things about the whole weekend. Amazing young talent!

Has Bert mentioned he's Dutch? This is what he wore to the pre-first-pitch meeting at home plate. Go Netherlands!
Has Bert mentioned he’s Dutch? This is what he wore to the pre-first-pitch meeting at home plate. Go Netherlands!
Loved seeing TK manage again.
Loved seeing Tony O manage the World Team.
Skipper Tom Kelly, back in action!
Skipper TK, back in action!
Lucky for baseball, that NBA gig didn't work out for a couple of the guys.
Lucky for baseball, that NBA gig didn’t work out for a couple of the guys.
The Clydesdales did a lap. The Dalmatian came to MN, too!
The Clydesdales did a lap. The Dalmatian came to MN, too!
The Twins' Kennys Vargas can play! I slept better that night, knowing we DO have a first baseman. Hopefully he is up here soon.
The Twins’ Kennys Vargas can play! I slept better that night, knowing we DO have a first baseman. Hopefully he is up here soon.

Softball is tougher than it looks: Celebrity softball

After an encouraging afternoon with Futures, it was time for Legends in the Celebrity softball game. We laughed nonstop at these antics. Our fave moments:

Larry Fitzgerald and AP. Wish they were BOTH Vikings!
Larry Fitzgerald and AP. Wish they were BOTH Vikings!

 

All the teams sent their mascots! Several danced in our section and on top of the 3rd base dugout, right in front of us. I was partial to Rose (Reds). Matt liked the Marlins fish. TC Bear was clearly a great host!
All the teams sent their mascots! Several danced in our section and on top of the 3rd base dugout, right in front of us. I was partial to Rose (Reds). Matt liked the Marlins fish. TC Bear was clearly a great host!

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Jack Morris vs John Smoltz. Again. With a little (!) less on the line than Game 7 in 1991. Gave me chills to see them both on the mound again.

John Smoltz actually took himself out of the game and tapped Jennie Finch to take the mound.
John Smoltz actually took himself out of the game and tapped Jennie Finch to take the mound.
Jennie is an Olympic Champion softball pitcher. AP is a MVP NFLer. He came up to bat and asked her to pitch as she really would. Those pitches SMOKED by him! Just as he smokes by linemen all NFL season...
Jennie is an Olympic Champion softball pitcher. AP is a MVP NFLer. He came up to bat and asked her to pitch as she really would. Those pitches SMOKED by him! Just as he smokes by linemen all NFL season…

Monday: Home Run Derby

This is one of my favorite TV shows each year. It’s an event, even more clear when you go to this show live. But so fun to watch this power, especially guys from the National League who we rarely see at Target Field. Brian Dozier and (former Twin) Justin Morneau were crowd favorites, but my pick was Cespedes. We still have no idea how to pronounce his name, but he won the slugging title this year — again (he won last year too).

Mike and Mike (from ESPN), emceeing the action as eventual winner Cespedes steps up.
Mike and Mike (from ESPN), emceeing the action as eventual winner Cespedes steps up.

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Marlins' Giancarlo Stanton had some record long balls in our Target Field. He's a slugger with an attitude!
Marlins’ Giancarlo Stanton had some record long balls in our Target Field. He’s a slugger with an attitude!

 The ultimate party

Tuesday was Target Field’s night to shine. We saw All Stars past (Hank Aaron was there!) and present. And probably future. I must admit I didn’t take many pictures. I was soaking in every second of this magical night!

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jeter

 

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The Clydesdales (and the Dalmatian!) came back for the Big Game.
The Clydesdales (and the Dalmatian!) came back for the Big Game.

An aerial shot from the NY Times that still makes my heart swell with pride. Way to go, Minnesota. You’re the true all star for hosting an amazing party. Happy I could be there. My bucket overfloweth.

Photo from NY Times.
Photo from NY Times.

Itasca, more beautiful than ever

Minnesota’s First State Park is still a blue-ribbon winner in our adventures-close-to-home book. Greg and I camped there as kids, and it was one of our first biking trips, then camping trips together.

We returned there last week with another great camping family and again soaked it all in! Bonus: Sue is an a.m.a.z.i.n.g. photographer, and she’s letting me share some of her shots here. Thanks, Sue. We’d camp anywhere with you guys. And thanks to you and your lens, Itasca is more beautiful than ever!

Here’s their clan:

Don't they look like Happy Campers?!
Don’t they look like Happy Campers?!

There’s so much more than the Mississippi Headwaters, but since that’s the origin of this gorgeous park, it’s a good place to start, too.

The Mississippi Headwaters

Photo cred: Matt!
Photo cred: Matt!

 

Our family, plus nephew Adam who joined us for part of our time there!
Our family, plus nephew Adam who joined us for part of our time there!
Just days before, the rocks were covered due to all the rain. We made it just fine!
Just days before, the rocks were covered due to all the rain. We made it just fine!
He does alright on melted ice, too.
He does alright on melted ice, too.
Way to go, Adam!
Way to go, Adam!
And she didn't even need her mobile to cross. No app for that, lovey!
And she didn’t even need her mobile to cross. No app for that, lovey!

 

rock on, babe (Loving his new collection of Life is Good Tshirts for camping)
rock on, babe
(Loving his new collection of Life is Good Tshirts for camping)
Our water bug.
Our water bug.
We all crossed the rocks. Cara, of course, went right in. We told her again this year we'd pick her up in New Orleans in a few weeks.
We all crossed the rocks. Cara, of course, went right in and started down the river. We told her again this year we’d pick her up in New Orleans in a few weeks.
And so it begins...
And so it begins…

Perfect harmony

Itasca has somehow managed to keep a balance of its natural beauty (incredible white and red pines, rare flowers, charming loons), with ways for us to enjoy it (pontoons, kayaks and other water toys, bike trails).

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A little less nature, please?

Our hike to the Fire Tower could have been without fewer mosquitos, but the views and experience was worth the itches!

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