Archive for June, 2015

  • Chapter 118- Ingebrigt Håker Flaten at Anodyne Coffee


    A few weeks ago, I saw a notification on my Facebook page that Anodyne Coffee was hosting a free performance by Ingebrigt Håker Flaten, a jazz bassist from Norway who was in town for the OKKA Fest.  Since I knew nothing about Ingebrigt or the jazz fest, I thought it would be a perfect event for my four kids!


    We got to Anodyne a few minutes later than I hoped (for some reason Bay View is the Bermuda Triangle for me.  I can NEVER find a decent route there, and since I’m a “just wing it” kind of gal, I don’t bother looking at a map or getting GPS).

    But when we arrived, we had to share a table with four other people.  One of my kids was feeling particularly shy and obstinate that day, so we almost had to call it off due to table sharing.  Luckily, two super nice folks saw what was about to happen and offered up their table, saving the day.


    We sat down to munch on our cookies and juice (soda? whatever you want to call San Pellegrino) and it was awesome.


    Awesome because the music was nothing like my kids had ever heard.  It was also out of my typical listening genres.  It was disjointed, confusing, interesting, and involved lots of plucking/striking/squealing.  Of course, because I’m out of my element, I’m using non technical terms.  But it was SO interesting to hear and see.


    It was a quiet crowd, as you had to be in order to hear some of the music.  Not something many (ahem, any) people would take their kids to.  The twins and Little T did a good job of listening and letting other people enjoy the performance, but my 1.5 year old didn’t really understand why she had to eat a cookie in silence for 20 minutes.  There were a few “MAMA!” shouts, but other than that, they were all pretty good.  Actually, three people came up to me afterwards and complimented the kids.  High five, team!


    We played on the sidewalk for a few minutes, before deciding we need to run off some sugar.


    So we headed to Humboldt Park!  It was a busy and beautiful day, and I spent most of the time pushing kids on the swings.  Any other parents out there avoid parks with swings?  I do.  It’s nearly impossible to find four swings in a row (at least two have to be big kids swings, at least one has to be a little kid swing).  So I spend my time trying to keep an eye on many people in many different parts of a playground.  But it works out.

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    It was really fun to do something out of our element, followed up by running around outside at a beautiful park.

    A. Storm


  • Chapter 117- Milwaukee Public Museum with new friends!


    A few weeks ago, I met up with Keila of Mommy In Milwaukee, and her two adorable boys, at the Milwaukee Public Museum.  Keila is such a kind and positive woman, and I feel so happy to have met her.  We’d connected on Instagram, and decided we should probably adventure together at some point.


    When we arrived, it was decided unanimously that we should see the dinosaurs first.  And I think my kids are officially not afraid of the T. Rex exhibit!  It’s always been a huge draw, but the loud sounds and dark lights were pretty intimidating.  Not anymore though, we’re officially brave.


    At the end of the exhibit, there was a museum volunteer with LOADS of information about dinosaurs.  He let us hold real bones, and helped the kids determine which bones were real and which were replicas.


    The above picture is of one of my favorite spots in the museum.  I love the feeling of being underwater and back in history simultaneously.  Oh, and the kids liked it too.


    After trying to corral five kids under age four, we headed back to the lobby to have some lunch and regroup.  We shared snacks and Keila and I finally had a chance to chat.  Turns out we both have a passion for our city, and want to find ways to get people connected.  Now comes the task of figuring out how to do that!


    Little T was still in school, so I wasn’t able to stay too long.  We hung out in the lobby for a bit longer, and talked of wolly mammoths and other awesome natural science.

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    We also found some stairs behind the wolly mammoth.  Which created an amazing loop for the kids to run around.  And around and around and around.


    Eventually we had to part.  It was a short but super sweet adventure, and I’m sure we’ll hang with Keila’s crew again this summer.


    And on our way out, S had a pretty epic temper tantrum over the stupid sucker she happened to find in the diaper bag (I love everything about our pediatrician except the fact that they have suckers in the lobby.  One accidentally found its way into my bag).  Her older siblings were kind enough to sit next to her (totally unprompted) and wait it out.

    Thanks to Keila for the great company, and to the museum for allowing me to bring some guests!

    Hope summer’s treating everyone well,

    A. Storm


  • Chapter 116- Orange Gallery

    Hey all!  If you’re free tonight, check out Orange Gallery’s Grand Opening!


    I was lucky enough to attend the soft opening in February, and wanted to share about this cool new shop.  Ngoc is a fabulous lady (pictured below, left) who has put together the collection of artwork, jewelry, clothing and general awesomeness in the gallery.  Lacquer Nail Salon shares the space, and provides some seriously good looking nail services by a lovely and hilarious woman, Lynna.

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    When I arrived, there were lots of folks strolling around talking to artists, shopping, munching on delicious food and doing some general mingling.


    I liked a ton of the work, and got to meet the women from Artery Ink, Mara and Gloria.  They’ve put together health/wellness with art, to create a really unique art form.  I really appreciate the combination, and the fact that they honestly care about people.  And their message is worth getting behind.  Unfortunately, I didn’t get any photos of their work, so hit up their online stuff if you haven’t seen them around town.

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    There seemed to be something for everyone here.  The range of style and price was fit for a wide variety of shoppers.


    And the general vibe of the night was right up my alley.  People were interesting, welcoming, easy going.  I sometimes feel out of my league at art events, but not here!


    I met Leah Delaney of ExFabula (CHECK. THAT. OUT.) and got excited about what she’s doing.  I later attended an ExFabula event and had a wonderful evening, where I almost got up the guts to share a story in front of a large crowd.


    I even said hi to Mr. John Dye of Bryant’s Cocktail Lounge (he was apparently feeling a bit photo shy).  Remember the post I did about Doors Open and the in depth tour I got?  It’s a cool place with rich history.


    I spent most of the evening meeting artists, learning about Milwaukee, and generally having fun talking with people.  Which brings me to the fact that I took only a few of these photos…

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    A big shout out to my friend and photographer Kate for making this post possible!  Most of these pics are hers.  Well except the one above that I snapped while she was avoiding being in front of the camera.

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    The food was delicious (catered by Classic Slice and Cedar Teeth), the company was top notch, and the art work was really great.  I’m sure the Grand Opening tonight will be a blast!


    Check out Orange Gallery tonight (I hear there’s a DJ!) or any other time, I’m sure you’ll agree.

    Thanks for reading and have a great weekend,

    A. Storm



  • Chapter 115- Milwaukee Ballet’s Cinderella


    My mom treated me, Little T and Little A to the ballet!  And because it was Cinderella, the girls took another opportunity to wear some sweet dress up dresses I found at Goodwill last year (because the attire is pretty standard on regular days at home, too).


    And Little T was extremely lucky…as one of the cellists was walking into the building, she spotted Little T and gave her the super fancy crown pictured above.  Thank you MSO!

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    And thankfully, Little T is great at sharing and let her little sister have a turn with the crown.


    It was a beautiful performance.  I’ve been to a handful or two of Milwaukee Ballet’s performances, and I’m never let down.  The company does amazing work, and I feel honored any time I get to attend.  This show had three acts, which was a little long for my kids (granted, I took a 3 and a 5 year old to the ballet).  They were a little less antsy watching the Nutcracker because it was shorter and had lots of action.  Cinderella was a beautiful show, though.  It was interesting to see how they adapted the story to the stage, and made some slight changes to the more well-known versions.


    During the second intermission, Little A and I bolted up to the snack bar because the kids were getting really tired.  We stood in line (or twirled next to it) for about 10 minutes and got some snacks to mow down in the hallway before the third act began.  It was just perfect to perk up the kids!


    Special shout out to my Mom for taking us on such a fun adventure!  And thanks to the Milwaukee Ballet for providing our city with some beautiful and meaningful art.

    A. Storm

  • Chapter 114- Kaleo at 88Nine Radio Milwaukee

    Alright, this is going to be a pretty quick post for a few reasons.  One is that I didn’t take many photos (I took some videos but cannot for the life of me format them correctly so you can view them…boo!) and the other is that I have a  queue of posts just waiting to be published.  So watch out, I might do something crazy and post more than once today!


    But a few weeks ago, I took the girls down to 88Nine Radio Milwaukee to see the band Kaleo.  Which happened to coincide with DJ Kallao’s last day at the radio station.  Crazy, right?

    I’d only heard the band’s one song, All The Pretty Girls, and liked it.  That’s enough to get me down to the studio!


    J was on a special date with his cousin, so it was just me and the girls.  We got some water and cookies from Stone Creek and found seats.  And snuggled while waiting for the band.


    And I have to say, I’m a fan of the band now.  It was a great show…I was surprised that the music had a definite blues and good ol’ rock and roll feel.  We heard “I Can’t Go On Without You” and “Broken Bones” which I loved.


    I thought this was a cool guitar.  (Hey Dad, can the next one you build look like this?)


    The kids danced, clapped along, and we all left feeling like we got a super special treat.  A chance to see a band from Iceland perform in our city.  They stuck around to talk to the audience after, but nap time called so we departed before saying thanks.


    So thanks Kaleo and 88Nine for the entertainment!  I wish I should share with you the videos from the performance, just to give you a more accurate feel for the music, and the vibe of 88Nine’s studio performances.  They’re a really fun and free (and quite family friendly for being live on the radio!) way to get involved.

    Till next time,

    A. Storm