Thursday, July 31, 2014

Summer Fun!

first swim meet
The summer of 2014 has been a VERY busy one!  Some families look forward to not having schedules and being carefree....however we are not one of those families.  We all thrive on routines and being kept busy, so that is what we have done.

Bennett and Preston joined the Homewood swim team, and have been involved in Homewood day camp which started June 8th and goes until Aug 1st.  In addition, they did vacation bible school, went to the beach for two week long trips, went to the lake a couple of weekends, did a couple of specialty camps (Bennett did Camp Winnataska for a week, and Preston attended zoo camp), and had some down time where they could just veg in front of the TV or play with friends.  It has worked out well for all of us!

kind of looks like a swimmer, right?
Just a few recaps....Swim team has been an awesome experience for both kids!  Though we have missed a lot of meets due to being on vacation, they have consistently improved.  They both have improved their times every meet, and have walked away with ribbons for placing in various strokes.  The biggest accomplishment went to Preston who did not know how to swim any stroke at the beginning of the summer, and cried whenever the coaches made him practice backstroke.  However, he finally got the hang of all of them.  In fact, at his last two meets, he swam backstroke, and did it so well that he got a "senior county" time.    During the last meet, he even qualified for SC with freestyle!  He was very excited about that!  Sadly, he is missing this coveted meet due to another vacation.  Next year maybe...

6 months old and happy as a clam
During one of our lake visits, both kids got up on the knee board and learned to drive the jet ski.

However, this summer wasn't all about Bennett and Pres....Walker has enjoyed it too!  He has spent a lot of time with both sets of grandparents, has learned to roll over both ways and can now get to different places in a room by scooching backward and rolling.  He LOVES the pool, and splashing around is his favorite thing to do.  He still loves the beach, and is an awesome traveler for a little guy.

Selfie with W to prove that he looks like me...just a little

Father's Day with the best Daddy!
Bennett kneeboarding
Pres kneeboarding
W can nap anywhere - even on a boat
Bennett swimming butterfly (smiling at me)

The kids before their last meet

Pres swimming butterfly

Walker hanging out at their swim meet

It is hard to believe that summer is almost over, but school starts in less than 2 weeks!  We still have more fun things planned....Pres is going to Peoria with Christian to visit my parents for 6 days, and Bennett has several activities planned while her brother is away.

Monday, July 7, 2014

4th of July Weekend!

As we typically do over the 4th of July weekend, we headed to the Mizerany lake house for the long weekend.  Steve took off Thursday before the weekend too, so we had four days to hang out.  Since I sometimes get a little stir crazy, we drove two cars up so I could leave when I wanted.  We brought Beckham, and all of our gear, and made it up by lunch.  The kids immediately hit the lake with some of their cousins, while we got unpacked and settled.

kids with Jennifer Rawlings
Myra did all of the cooking for our side of the house, and we just contributed where we could.  For someone who isn't all fired up about coming back to the house to cook, this worked out very well for me.  The first night, we touched base with Steve's cousin, Jennifer, who was at the lake with her parents.  She came and picked us up on their boat and took us out for a little drive and back to their house where the kids jumped off their diving board about fifty times.  By the time we finally made it back to the house, Louis and the girls had arrived.  We enjoyed a nice Mexican dinner, and went to bed at a relatively decent time.

fishing 4th of July morning
Beck hopped on all by himself
morning snuggles

Daddy with Walker supervising cornhole tournament

Sadly, John Michael was ill with a stomach bug, so he and Michelle missed the first couple of days.  Friday morning, we awoke to the briskest summer morning I can recall in a LONG time.  It was about 60 degrees, so I decided to take a run with Beck.  That day, we hung on the pier all day enjoying the low humidity.  It was a little too chilly for Walker, so he stayed back with Steve's parents.  Since it was the 4th of July, we had BBQ, ribs, wings, potato salad and Asian slaw.  The kids started a cornhole tournament, and everyone got it on it.  That evening, people all around us were letting off fireworks....and pretty big ones, so we enjoyed the show.

Saturday, we did more of the same, but with John Michael and Michelle who finally made it up.  The kids got their fill of swimming, fishing and riding on the jet ski all weekend with their cousins.  We always had full stomachs and had fun with the family.  By Sunday morning, I was ready to go home and get back to my routine.  Steve stayed back with the kids and Beck, and when we finally all were together again that night....everyone was POOPED!  It was a busy weekend!  Beck had the best time of all though, running wild all day long, playing with other dogs, floating on tube and swimming a little.  The dog slept for days after we returned.