Summer is flying by, and between getting our house ready for showings, picking out things for the new house, and practicing music for a wedding reception we performed in, I have hardly blogged at all (not that I haven’t wanted to!). Here’s a quick little catch up post of our summer happenings. I’ll apologize in advance for the lack of photo quality. I’ve been leaving my big camera at home, sometimes because I don’t want to carry it, but usually because I forget it (it’s tucked away as part of my showing-ready minimalism). So the following are all phone photos. Sorry!
My husband’s cousin got married last weekend. My girls haven’t been to a wedding in several years (and don’t remember the ones they have been to), so they were extremely excited.
We had lots of wedding dress up and role-playing around here in preparation.
The wedding was lovely and I was excited to get to spend a little bit of time at the farm where my Father-in-law grew up and my husband spend many happy hours of his childhood. The house was built by my husband’s great grandfather (who dug the basement with horses!). I was happy that my girls got to see and experience it a little bit.
I was so privileged to get to participate in the band that performed for the reception. (I’ve posted about the band before. It’s primarily made up of my husband, one of his brothers, two of his cousins, and a friend. I just sing some songs and play some tambourine.)
The bride is the sister of two of the band members, and she and her husband took a chance and let us play the music for their reception. We aren’t a professional band, and in fact only had about two hours of practice time with the whole band together. But everyone spent so much time practicing at home individually, we sounded pretty darned good.
It was a blast. The music and dancing and family time were perfect. And most importantly, I think the bride and groom were pleased.
I have to mention the hospitality of my husband’s cousin and his wife. We traveled to their small town in Iowa twice this summer, once for a band practice, and once for the wedding. Both times, they let us stay with them in their house, fed us, and made us completely comfortable and welcome. It’s so amazing to visit someone and feel like they are truly happy and not put out in the least with having you in their home. Ben’s cousin’s wife took care of everything for us. She watched my kids while I practiced with the band. And she did it all with a genuine smile. I was inspired to do a better job of this myself when people visit us.
The zoo (#1).
Moving on to other summer things, we went to a small local zoo last week with Super Friend and four of her five children. It was a little dirtier and more weedy than I remember it being in years past (to the point that we could barely see a couple of the animals through the tall weeds), but the kids still loved it.
The highlight of the day occurred when we were walking out to the car. We ran into a zoo employee, who was bringing one of their newest residents in through the front entrance. She let the girls pet their nine-week-old baby tiger!
We joined the pool again this year, and have been spending a good amount of time there.
It’s our new go-to family activity after Mass on Sundays. We have it nearly to ourselves for a few hours before other people get around to making it to the pool.
We get in and swim with the girls for a little while, and then relax for some mom and dad time while they splash around in the shallow area. Summer at its finest.
The Dirty Weird Zoo.
Just yesterday, we took our annual trip to the DWZ. It’s still dirty and weird. And unfortunately this year they didn’t allow us to take bags of bread for the kids to feed to the animals while we walked around. That was always the big selling point of the place for me. My kids enjoyed feeding bread to the animals so much, I was able to overlook the dirtiness. This year I wondered if it was worth it without that fun experience for them.
Surprisingly, they didn’t seem too disappointed about not having the bread to give. I think I was more bummed out about it than they were.
They still made great memories with great friends.
The other stuff.
We’ll be trying to soak up the rest of our short summer here before we officially start our school. So far, it’s been fun and fast.
I hope you’re enjoying your summer too!
Check out more quick takes at This Ain’t the Lyceum.