Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Esther visits

The best smiles of Kade are when he's in a swing.Meet Zane Curtis. I'm his favorite aunt in MN. He does have one other aunt in IA so I can't be his absolute favorite, but it's pretty close. Anyway, he was so adorably fun to hold, and he loves to laugh. My brave sister drove all the way from LA to see us for almost a week, arriving the day after we got back from camp. We spent lots of our time getting everyone ready, eating, feeding, bathing our kids, and cleaning up, but it was so fun to be together. We did manage to get out on a few outings, and Kylee and DJ played non-stop from the minute they woke up until they crashed at night. A box just seemed like the right place to put TWO babies.

Our trip to Teddy Bear Park.

This is what my house looked like when Esther arrived. Ten days of laundry.

The cousins discovered each other right away. Kade is four months older and a pound heavier!We used our library passes to go to a Fire Museum. They loved it!

Included in admission is a ride in this fire truck.
We also stopped at the library to get our passes and this is where my boys were when I walked over to the children's section.

Bike Tour

Kent led the bike tour/fundraiser up to International Falls this year (about 230 miles). This was a never-before-tried route, so I think they all enjoyed the change of scenery. I stayed for the reminder of camp with the boys and met them all on Saturday night about 50 miles away for their fun award/entertainment night. They left Friday morning on a day that felt like it just might be November. It was downright wet and chilly, but they all seemed in good spirits. Malia was rookie this year and Kent said she did great. No complaining and she pulled her weight. They did quite a bit of training together this year, and so they were pretty well prepared.

I love this picture of the girls!! Tana drove our van as one of the support vehicles and the other three rode.

And we stayed at camp, enjoying some time with grandparents. Levi really cracked me up here...he didn't realize the cone was meant to if it was some sort of bowl or dish.
Daddy's back!!!! Good tour. They raised about $10,000 for the camp.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Cold Camp

Singing time between classes each morning is one of my favorite times at camp. I'm especially thrilled to hear all the children singing. Here Levi is doing is best to chime in. Hat day...this was Kent's amazing creation for DJ to wear for the hat competition. Need I say he won (at least he got the loudest cheers).
Our only day on the beach. It was beautiful and we could have played for hours. We had no idea that the rest of the week..........
would look like this!!!

And that we would cherish each lonely sweatshirt we brought, especially if it was still dry. I actually did manage to throw in some winter hats. Don't ask me why. Oh yeah. We live in MN.

The Wedding

Our whole family rarely gets together for a picture but here we are! Here we are...happy to see everyone, sad to go so soon and tired. We drove until 4 am the next morning.
Kent's younger brother Kirk, his wife, Melissa, and their three children from Tennessee.

Kent's oldest brother Keith and his wife Gayle from Florida.

And here are the four brothers. Levi just perched right down in front of them and so I, of course, thought this was the best picture.

I don't have a single picture of the bride and groom but they were lovely. She is Kent's niece and we had the pleasure of having her stay with us three weeks last summer. Their wedding was in a beautiful old building that had been restored. Hopefully, we won't have to wait for another wedding to see the whole family again.

Grandpa and Grandma's Pond

I had lots of time sitting in a van to figure this out...Kent drove about 32 hours in 76 hours. Up to camp to get the girls...then down to Illinois for a family wedding, then back up to MN to family camp. The morning of the wedding, we had some time to enjoy the pond in Bud and Vineta's backyard. I'm proud that Malia can handle her own worm (even though I won't touch them!) And then there's Levi who had a blast just with the bait (who cares about fishing when you can play with the worms). He literally carried one around with him until he made it into the house.
DJ was thrilled and always is when he gets the chance to go fishing. Wish we could have stayed longer.

Thrilled and practically giddy!

This vehicle is a favorite of all the grandkids...called the Rhino.

Our July 4th

Triplet boys and their brother (our next door neighbors) invited DJ over to shoot off a few fireworks. There's just something about playing with the "fire" yourself that appealed to these guys. Later we went and watched the big ones from a distant spot by the freeway. You know, Levi hardly noticed the fireworks and rather kept exclaiming, "Look, white van!" "Look, big truck." I told Kent we could have come any old night and it would have been just as fun for him. :) So the background was holiday colors too. I didn't realize that until now!
This was the typical scenario!

Our dessert. I LOVE the way these berries look and taste. So glad they are in season.