Tag Archives: Beth

Memorial Day Weekend Part 2

Part 1

It was wet, rainy and foggy all weekend until the last hours of daylight on Sunday night. This made for a wet and chilly weekend that was a bit of a challenge to photograph. I did my best, but I am hoping when we go back over the 4th of July we will have sun so I can try and get some better photos.

Michael and Patrick drove (with a little help) 4-wheelers and Elise giggled. I really don’t know who had more fun. The boys or Elise.


Even though this photo is slightly out of focus it is still one of my favorites from the weekend.


My Dad is awesome at a lot of things, but there are a few things that I remember being in awe of when I was a little girl that I still am in awe of today. My Dad can make a blade of grass whistle and he can skip a rock like no other. These skills give my Dad some major Papa points with the kids.


Last year at this time Elise couldn’t fully appreciate the fun of throwing rocks into the water. This year she got it and was right there with her brothers tossing rocks and watching them splash. I think once a week this summer we will go to a rocky beach, I will bring a magazine and flip through glossy ads while the kids throw rocks. Sounds like a good time for all.


It was my Dad’s birthday over the weekend so I had Tim snap this shot so we could print it out and frame it for him. The only other thing my dad wants is a bigger tractor and the cabin renovations to be complete and I can’t do either of those, so photo in frame it is.



I don’t love her more than I love the boys, she is just so much easier to photograph. I think the boys are a bit fed up with the constant picture taking. They rarely even turn when I call their name if they know I am snapping pictures.


This new chip on their shoulder doesn’t deter me though, it just leads to more profile and silhouette shots.






After some down time that lasted just long enough to let their hoodies dry out a bit, we hit Lake Darling for some fishing.



I don’t know why I get a kick out of this shot but I do. The boys had so much fun and took it very seriously… until PJ got frustrated, but that is just par for the course. Here they are discussing their chances of catching a fish while Tim and my Dad do all the work.




Elise was the only one that caught something.


Michael had the most fun. He would have stayed out there casting all day long. If it wouldn’t have been raining I might have let him.





Look at that cast!


The poles were cheap poles from Target but they were worth it. We will keep them at the cabin (because Lord knows I won’t be taking them fishing!) and this can become a new tradition for the kids and Papa.


They did so much in the 2 days we were there, and so many photos were taken that I think I am going to have to break this up into another post!

Part 3 tomorrow.


The last night of the AGM the kids charmed a few of our good friends into loving them even more without even knowing it. We live far from family but we have grown to be really good friends with some of Tim’s colleagues and their spouses and families. The last night of AGM is always “family night.” It is a night filled with fun activities for the whole family.

This is how they won over our dear friends.

Patrick was so intense and so eager to make a dream catcher. He later told our friends that he was so excited to hang it over his bed to catch all his bad dreams but that sometimes he likes bad dreams because the villains like Bowser are fun.



I helped Elise make hers and she picked the pinkest beads out of the basket. Thank you Beth for snapping this photo. I love being behind the camera but it makes me happy to think that the kids will have a few photos a me to look back at too.

Michael is a rule follower. True he spends a great amount of his time trying to find a loop-hole in the rules but when you ask him to do something he almost always does it. He is especially sweet, protective and super responsible whenever we ask him to keep an eye on his sister. It isn’t like we go out for happy hour drinks and leave him in charge, but he is old enough now that  if when I have to reprimand Patrick for not listening to his swim teacher at lessons, I can tell Michael to make sure that Elise stays sitting on the bench and does not leave her spot, and I know that Elise will not end up in the pool. He takes this job very seriously and will literally stand guard in front of her shuffling a basketball-like shuffle in front of her so she can not move off the bench. I knew that when I asked him to keep and eye on Elise when she and a few other kids took over an empty stage for an impromptu dance performance, he would do just that. Michael was right up there dancing away but also making sure that Elise wasn’t too close to the edge of the stage. Patrick was up there too but he was so focused on his freestyle dancing that I don’t think an elephant walking across the stage would have broken him from his concentration on his dance moves.

Look at those watchful eyes of big brother. He is so good with her.

Elise is two years old, beautiful and can give you the snarkiest looks or the sweetest smile.  She charms everyone all the time, but on Family Night she was on her A game. Maybe it was the beaded hippy shirt and sparkly pink shoes or maybe it was because it was 2 hours past bed time and she was delirious… I don’t know but I think even Tim fell in love with her again that night.

(photo credits to Nanny of the year)

I love my babies.

Caption This.

Beth went with on our trip as our “nanny” but really she is my sister and the kids Aunt…. We don’t pay her, we just feed her and give her a place to sleep. She is far great than any nanny. The kids love and respect her. It is fun to have her around and she is a huge help. Plus she didn’t judge me when I was hung over like a college kid on spring break the night after the annual formal dinner. Well that is not completely true. She found it quite funny that I was sick. I don’t think she pointed and laughed but I know she laughed. It doesn’t matter though because she took the boys to the pool and played with them while Elise and I rested (Elise overheats really quickly).

To thank Beth for taking time off of work and giving up her weekend to travel with us, I wanted to share a nice photo of her and the kids as a token of thanks.

That was my intention when I went looking for a photo but I just kept coming back to this one. I don’t know what was going on besides that PJ was tired and snuggling in her lap, Michael was playing Mario Brothers and we were waiting to board our plane to fly home.

Please. Please. Caption this photo.

AGM 2013

This year’s AGM for the company Tim works for was in Phoenix. The weather was warm, the sun was shining and the whole family (plus Beth) were able to come.

When we left on Thursday morning our plane was on the runway for over an hour waiting to be de-iced. Luckily, de-icing was fascinating to the kids, “IT IS LIKE A CAR WASH!” So the delayed departure and subsequent time sitting in an airplane wasn’t too big a deal.


Just a few hours later and one free beverage-no free pretzels or peanuts on US Airlines- later we landed in Arizona where the sun was shining and my soul sang.

Have I mentioned lately how long and unending this winter has been?!

We hit the ground running and as soon as our bags were delivered to our room we were suited up and in the pool. Swimming is how we spent our days (Tim was in meetings during the morning hours but that didn’t keep the rest of us from the pool) and our evenings were spent enjoying company events. Tim’s company always does a great job making sure the kids have plenty to do so the parents can catch up with friends and colleagues that we haven’t seen since the last AGM.

We just got a back this afternoon. I only pulled out my “big” camera once because I wanted to swim and play too. Yesterday I brought the camera down to the pool and was able to snap a few (ok, a hundred or so) photos of the kids, Tim and Beth swimming in between requests to “GET IN AND SWIM MOM!”

I laugh every time I look at this photo. It makes me think Hasselhoff running across the beach in the opening credit of Baywatch.

This kid loves the water. All my kids love the water but this one… he is always finding a way to be in the water whether it is helping me was dishes, splashing in a puddle or playing in the bath long after the water turns cold. I can’t wait to set up the pool again this summer.

I couldn’t be prouder and more excited about how far the kids have come in the past 15 weeks of swim lessons. Switching to FOSS Swim School was the best we thing have done for them in terms of swimming safety and body awareness.  And it is by far the most fun they have had in an extra curricular activity.

Foss stresses backfloating as a life saving skill. I completely agree. They teach the kids to flip from their belly to their back when they get tired or overwhelmed in the water so the kids are able to catch their breath and take a break in a safe way. Check out Michael just floating around the pool. He has pretty much mastered his back float.

Check out the water in the photo. It may be a bit more to carry around but man I love LOVE my camera.

And here he is practicing his freestyle. I wish my Dad would have been there to see it. I can’t help but think about how proud he would be watching his Grandson swim. My Dad was a swim coach, swim teacher and competitive swimmer. He never missed a swim meet or a single event of Beth’s or mine when we were swimming competitively. I know he was proud of how his girls swam, so seeing Michael swim makes me beam with pride on so many levels. That is my boy making my Dad smile with pride. I love you Dad. Check out your grandson. And Michael when you read this years from now make sure to note how much joy you bring your Daddy.

Elise has been taking lessons at Foss too and she is getting so much more comfortable in the water. I think by the end of the next session she will be floating on her own. For her, just like big brother Patrick, everything is more fun when in water. Her giggles and squeals of glee were heard all around the pool when playing a simple game of peek a boo with Beth.

She thinks she can swim on her own. In fact she kind of resents you for helping her. When she “gets it” she is going to take off and become a great swimmer. She paddles/scoops and kicks like there isn’t anyone there holding her up. Its only the ability to keep that toddler belly and bum floating that is keeping her from becoming the next Missy Franklin. Look at the intensity on her face. She is in it to win it.

Elise is a Mommy’s girl, that isn’t a secret but she loves her Daddy. He thinks she can do no wrong and she thinks he hangs the moon.

And then there was jumping. Is there anything more fun, careless, free, uplifting and wonderful then the joy of jumping into a pool?! My boys don’t think so.

Beth and one of Tim’s co-workers wife’s Katie taught the boys how to do cannon balls one morning while I was sleeping off the fun I had the night before.

And tomorrow I will share my two favorite images from the whole weekend.