Saturday, June 7, 2014

Father & Sons Campout

The annual father & sons campout was this weekend, so off we (me (Michael), Ryan and Calvin) went.

It was raining when we got there. It stopped raining after a little while and we went on a short hike. Our usual fishing spot was covered with poison ivy, and the mosquitoes were really bad on the trail by the lake so we didn't stay there long.

Back at the campsite we set up our tents and hung out around the fire for a while.

When it was all the way dark we tried to do a night hike. Calvin made it a couple hundred yards down the trail (a grassy single-track service road) before fears of vampire bats and bears were too much. We did see some regular non-vampire bats, so that may have triggered his fears.

It rained a good part of the night and almost all morning. We were going to take the canoe out, but there was intermittent lightning and the rain just wouldn't let up.

We packed up and ate breakfast. Calvin begged to go fishing, so we headed to a lake a couple miles down the road from our campsite where there's a dock. I told him that if it let up a bit we could fish off the dock, but that we weren't going to get the canoe out.

It didn't let up. Then I had this idea:

I backed the truck right up to the edge of the lake and we fished from inside the topper. We didn't catch anything -- but then we've never caught anything in this lake in the 3 years we've gone there.

After about an hour it finally stopped actually raining and just drizzled, so we headed to the dock.

We still didn't catch anything, but the boys got some good casting practice in.

All in all it was another successful father and sons campout!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Pinewood Derby!

Way back in March Ryan had his first ever Pinewood Derby in scouts.  He worked long and hard on his car with Michael, and he was SO excited to finally race the shark car!  He designed it himself and did pretty much all of the cuts, with Michael's supervision, and did the painting and everything himself!

Ryan had a great time racing the car with the other scouts.  Unfortunately, Ryan's design must not have been very aerodynamic, because I think once he got 2nd in a heat of 3 cars, but there were no other victories of any kind for the shark car :(  But, Ryan had a good lesson in staying positive and being a gracious loser!  Which he sorely needed, by the way!

He ended up really having a great time, and was thrilled with his award for the shiniest car (kind of a stretch!)!  It was a fun night, and Ryan really had a great time.

Ryan with the shark car:

He took like a bajillion (very exciting) videos of cars racing:

Hannah had fun riding on Daddy's shoulders:

Very seriously watching the race:

Keeping Hannah busy turned out to be a full-time job:

Ryan with his friends Elijah and Adam:

Michael, me and the girls:


Ryan with his car and his award:

Sunday, June 1, 2014

I like being an aunt

So, it is DEFINITELY time to catch up on this blog, folks!  I have some crazy awesome things planned for the next few weeks, so it's time to post about all of the other awesome things we have been up to over the last couple of months!  In truth, this last month I have felt so devoid of energy that I just couldn't muster the enthusiasm to blog, but I hope to change all that!  Like right now!

So, way back in April one day I watched Jane, Jack and Aiden for a while so AnnaMarie and Tyler could do some shopping without to kids.  I remember feeling kind of frustrated with my kids, and doubting my decision to add more kids to my morning, but as soon as they all arrived, we had so much fun together in the back yard!  Hannah napped well and that freed me up to play outside for a while and then watch the view from the kitchen while getting a few things done.  Some days I feel like that is just what I need--to take off the Mommy hat and put something else on.  This time it was the Aunt Caroline hat, and it was so fun to do for a while.  I am way more fun as an aunt ;)

So here are some pictures of the kids having so much fun in the back yard!

Aiden loved the swing!

Swing buddies!

Jack is a sports enthusiast:

I taught Aiden how to "relax":

Selfie with the camera too close!

Best buddies:

Trying to pull Sophie:

Maybe it will work better with just the boys...

They finally got it moving with Jane pushing and Sophie pulling:

A visit from Brett and Sherry!

Also way back in April, Brett and Sherry were in town to catch a flight the next morning, so they were kind enough to bring over a few delicious Papa John's pizzas and we all got together for dinner and playing in the yard!  It was one of the first beautiful days and evenings of the spring, and it was so fun to be together and to be outside!  Brett and Sherry totally spoiled the kids with fun toys and then played around with them for a long time.  They loved it!  Thanks so much, Brett and Sherry!  The kids love you so much, and so do we!

Here are some pictures of the fun:


Hannah loving her princess ball, and Brett and Sherry, of course!

Couldn't stop kicking those happy little feet!

Tyler was the only one who could be bothered to smile for the camera...

Look at these crazy kids!  It was a fun evening!

Beautiful ladies!