Monday, July 27, 2009

hot fun in the summertime

We've been keeping busy... with fun stuff... this month! On the 8th we picked Em and Nick up at my grandma's. It was a very joyful reunion! (For a few minutes, at least. LOL! Then they were ready for their little brother to stop following them around everywhere!)

On the 11th, we headed back to my grandma's to spend the day there with family, just hanging out. :)

Benjamin had to try out bocce ball... HIS version:
The guys grilled various meats for everyone, and we had tons of salads and other side dishes, as well. Here are Uncle Chuck, Steve, and Uncle David by the grill (and Karen by the garage):
We celebrated Uncle Ron's birthday a little early with cake and ice cream:
My cousin Katrina's son Isaiah and Ben had fun running around all day:
And I finally got to meet Katrina's youngest, Ayden :) :
Mom, Uncle Chuck, and Dad play bocce ball:
Mom and Steve, playing bean bags:
Steve, Uncle David, Grandma, and Uncle Ron, playing cards:
Ben spent a long time pulling up weeds with this excavator! :
Uncle David had already left by the time I thought to do a group shot... Aunt Bernice, Mom, Dad, Uncle Ron, Aunt Ginny, Aunt Jeannette, Uncle John, Grandma, and Uncle Chuck:
We watched "our" robins get bigger and bigger:

Until they flew away on the 13th:
We also spied a hummingbird enjoying our bee balm! We've never seen one near our house before, so were very excited! This is not the best picture, unfortunately... I was taking it through our dirty window. (The bird is in the middle of the photo, just under the red blooms.):
On the 15th, George took the afternoon off from work, and we took the kids to Dave & Buster's for games and supper. Here Ben "helps" George with a car game:
I had to play a few rounds with my old favorite, Pac Man:
And George played another oldie:
Em liked spinning this wheel and winning tickets:
George and Ben on another car game:
On the 25th, I took the kids to our town's Summer Celebration parade. The weather was perfect! We all enjoyed ourselves and collected a ton of candy, besides! :

Later, we went over to the Summer Celebration festival for lunch and more fun. Of course, Nick insisted that we stop by Dan the Animal Man's booth to see the various creatures there, like this bearded dragon:
And the kids went on a few rides, like the big slide:
Zero Gravity (Em and Nick are just left of the opening):
And the kiddie train (Ben's in blue):
After going home to chill for a few hours, we returned to the fest at night for the fireworks. We all agreed that the finale (NOT the shot below) was one of the best we'd ever seen! :
Yesterday we spent the afternoon at a heritage farm and nature center. The kids and I have been there many times, and always enjoy it. George and Nick are looking out from the hay mow:

George demonstrates how he and his brothers used to stack hay on their uncle's farm:


Turtles at the nature center:
It was a beautiful day for a walk!:

We saw some wildlife... a hummingbird, lots of other birds, turtles, frogs, chipmunks, and even a few deer: