Tag Archives: family

The Highlight of Our Summer

We really enjoy spending a chunk of our summer in Pennsylvania with my family.¬†Even though it’s been almost 10 years since I lived there full time, it still feels like home in many ways. I love that my kids have strong bonds with my side of the family, even though we live so far apart.

The highlight of the summer for the kids is going to our huge family reunion at the end of July. It’s been going on since 1953. We went often when I was a kid and this is the third summer my kids have gone.

First of all, this year was extra special because we got to meet my newest niece for the first time.

Reed and Lena fell in love hard. And, I think the feeling was mutual. She thought Lena made a great pillow and Reed was hilarious.

Even though it’s a family reunion, the closest relations to me there (apart from my sisters, nephews, niece and parents) are usually second cousins. However, this year, one of my cousins came… the second reason why it was extra special. Reed thought my cousin Tim was the coolest… which he pretty much is.

I expected N to be bored, bored, bored at the reunion, but she was pretty happy to grab whatever she wanted to eat and have lots of space to run around.

Gus wasn’t quite as sure about his new little cousin as Reed and Lena were, but he ended up enjoying her company.

My dad came to the reunion this year, too.

N really enjoyed the square dancing. She was the only one of us to square dance this year and I could hardly get her out of the barn when it was time to go.


Another fun year with lots of memories made.

Thank you, Cousins

My kids love their cousins, but unfortunately, since most of their cousins live halfway across the country, they don’t get to see them often.

We used to try to Skype with them, but it was always pretty chaotic. Now the kids are a bit older, and we tried again yesterday. I think they had fun, but it’s still chaotic.

I’m pretty sure that they wanted to jump through the screen and play with them. Not just talk to them!

Then, today, they got a box from their cousins! They had off of school today, so it was great timing for this box full of craft materials. They get so excited for things like tape.

This girl.

Happy Birthday, Claire!

Yesterday was the kids’ cousin’s first birthday. She is on the only cousin on Aaron’s side of the family.

Today, we went to her birthday party.

She is adorable.

It’s cute to see Lena play with someone smaller than her. When we got home, Lena said that she likes Claire because she is like Lena. “What do you mean?”, I asked. “We… both have hair.”

We tried to get a picture of the 4 of them together. Gus was ready for a nap at this point.

Reed thought watching her dig into the cake was hilarious.2014-01-11_0004

I declined her offer to share the blue frosting.

After the cake clean-up, she snuggled into her daddy’s shoulder. So cute.

When we got home, we were surprised to see a package from my sister at the door– belated Christmas gifts.

Lena had been feeling really bummed that her birthday and Christmas had past, so she was particularly excited about this surprise.



Legos, a train for Gus and a Llama llama book. Spot on.


We spent the day celebrating Christmas with Aaron’s family. Unfortunately, we missed last week when all of his siblings were there, so it was just his parents and brother.

It’s a long drive to their house. Which apparently means I take selfies with Reed and my dogs.

I’m super cool.

Lena and Gus have bucket seats next to each other. I tickled Gus’s feet for awhile, but he wanted more, more, more and I quit. Someone else took over.

And this adorable thing happened.

This makes me happy. In the midst of people and many toys, I found her with her nose in a book. I can’t imagine how much more she’ll enjoy books when she can read all of the words.

Lena just adores her Uncle Micah.

Presents were opened. Lots of presents. Including envelopes which probably seems odd, but I promise you, Reed and Lena will use them up fast. And maybe we can even use some of them to write thank you notes!

I went out for a brief walk with my dogs, and saw several cardinals. I love their bold color against the starkness of winter.

And my dogs are ridiculous. Ridiculous.