Friday, June 24, 2016

Cell Phone Stories

Aunt Cae Cae, Uncle Frank and Rud moved out this month into their cozy garage apartment in Avondale Estates.  Pretty much every day since they have moved out, one of my boys asks where they are and when we can see them again.  Cal can't talk, but I am sure he is missing his partner in crime also.  Rud and Cal were often at odds over all sorts of things, but they also never wanted to be too far apart from each other.  Here they are playing hide and seek.  A little confused, I think, but happy none the less.

Here are just some shots of the boys enjoying an after school popsicle.  Three on the wall, one on the swing.  Then enjoying the hammock.  Just hanging out.

We celebrated Rud's 2nd birthday at the end of the May with a pool party at their new house.  Rudy and Cal enjoyed Caelyns giant bubble concoction,

Jude got a new bike for his birthday, so we finally have the appropriate number of wheeled vehicles again for our family.  We celebrated by biking/scootering/walking the Mason Mill / Medlock trail.

After we went strawberry picking, Jude and I made a couple of batches of strawberry jam.  I can always count on that boy to help.  I made Finnan take a break from reading to snap this picture for me.

Finnan and Jude are playing 7/8 coach pitch again this year.  They are the A's and Atticus is their coach.  They don't do much baseball throughout the year, but they love the couple of months they play.  This year there are several kids from school on their team which has made it more fun for them as well.  Decatur Rec starts the season with an opening day parade.  Here are the A's with their decorated truck.

Cal wasn't too excited about staying in the stroller to watch the parade, but was pretty excited about watching the trucks come by.

Both boys have been playing well and have been working really hard on their swing.  They are pretty consistent at bat, but the highlight of the season so far was Finnan being a part of three outs in a row on first base.  Three pitches, three outs!  He was on cloud nine that night.

This summer has been the beginning of Cal going to playgroup on a consistent basis.  This leaves us with some days of just having the older boys.  On one of those days we decided to give tubing on the Chattahoochee a try.  What an amazing outing, only about 30 minutes from our house, still inside the city.  Initially we did not tie our tubes together.  Finnan was not ok with this.  Almost immediately after you put the tube in, you go under I-285 and there are signs indicating which part of the bridge they want you to go under.  It was impossible to get over there soon enough, but Finnan was freaking out screaming, "I'm going to die! I'm going to die!"  Finally Atticus caught up with him and then Finnan hung on to his tube for dear life.  Jude was in his element, relaxing and letting the river take him, but at one point he got really far ahead and also started to get worried.  After we caught up with him and took a break on a little beach (complete with hiking trails and a bathroom), we tied us all together.  It really was very relaxing and so easy.  The river and the banks were also surprisingly clean.  I started day dreaming about kayak trips down the river once all of the kids are in school :)  I could definitely see that becoming a new hobby!

Weggi and Paw Paw came to visit to watch one of the boys' baseball games and hang out for a couple of days.  The older boys were in camp, but Rory and Cal soaked up a lot of Weggi and Paw Paw time.  As you can see Cal helped Weggi and I move some plants.  Weggi took Rory on a special trip to the zoo.  Jude also decided to stay home from camp one day so he could play baseball with Paw-Paw.

I just thought my chickens were looking particularly picturesque.  My cell phone camera really did not do it justice though.  Nor has any picture really captured Cal's love of and enthusiasm for our chickens.  His excitement whenever we find an egg in the texting box is adorable.  Here he is holding two eggs.  I'm going to need his help bringing in eggs once all 17 chickens are laying!

And this little 4 and 1/2 year old has been so sweet recently.  He has been so helpful, happy, and well-mannered.  "Mommy, would you please play keep away with me?"

Atticus and I have been working very hard on creating a clearing/beach area down by our creek.  We've made a lot of progress on a large section and I have been loving watching the kids explore down there.  It's such a nice place to hang out on these super hot summer days!

Paw-Paw and Honey came in for Father's Day weekend (hoping to welcome their newest grandchild).  The baby didn't come until the 21st (luckily Honey was able to stay), but these two super dads spent the afternoon playing baseball with the boys.  Even when they had to hold the babies, who desperately wanted to play.

Finnan and Jude are also swimming on the Decatur Gators swim team this summer.  They are both in 8 & under, which I was a little nervous about, but so far they have remained best brothers.  This is a picture of them after going head to head in the 100 IM, after a full day of soccer camp.  They were exhausted.  They came in first and second!

This year I decided to focus on creating my own home garden instead of running the community garden.  In case the garden did not do well, I signed up for the Global Growers CSA, which brings us to the Decatur Farmer's Market every Wednesday to pick up our share.  It's turned into a wonderful tradition and has allowed us to get amazing peaches every week.  After we buy them, the boys always want to sit under the tree and eat them right away.

Luckily, my garden has been doing very well and we have been having a good time planting, watching plants grow, picking them and eating them.  Snow peas rarely made it inside the house and were a common right before we get in the car snack.  Now they are doing the same with the green beans and tomatoes.  I have the extra tomatoes on the windowsill and a couple of days ago, Cal pushed the stool right over there so he could climb up and get some tomatoes on his own.  I guess nothing beats a home grown tomato.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Life's a Beach! Pat @ 65!

This May, Honey outdid herself and threw a long weekend beach party.  I never counted how many people came to Navarre for the weekend, but as you can see by the group shot it was a lot.  We all had fun catching up with family we don't see very often.  Finnan and Jude really took to some of Atticus' younger male cousins (in their early twenties), Rory was obsessed with his cousin Rory, and Cal enjoyed hanging out with Rose who was only two days older than him.   Jude also celebrated his 7th birthday while at the beach.  Paw Paw swept him away for a secret surprise- a jet ski ride!