In our family...

In our family....we do second chances...we do grace...we do real...we do mistakes...we do I'm sorry (and I forgive you)...we do loud really well...we do hugs...we do family...we do love.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Faces of Summer

My life has been crazy busy since I last wrote. Adding 2 more to this zoo crew has not only increased the fun and chaos, but the amount of groceries, cooking, laundry and noise level as well.

When I am not working, or tending to the zoo and it’s crew, I have been spending all my time with these people that I am crazy about…


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mitch and jasonlori and adam

IMG_1766 gerry and Lori

There hasn’t been much time for writing or visiting you or being on the computer. As much as I miss it, I am loving every second I spend with my favorite people.

We’ve driven go carts and played mini golf..


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   IMG_1969 Some went to a Minnesota Twins game. Not me. Needless to say, I was jealous.

brittanys pictures July 12 133 Lucky ducks!

Of course with living in the land of 10,000 lakes there has been some fishing…kids fishing with rayna

 IMG_2161Nevaehs fish raynas fish


A high light,has been hanging out with some of our favorite cousins.




We watched caterpillars come out of their cocoons…

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…as butterflies!

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We held the butterflies…

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….and said goodbye as they flew away.

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Tubing and water fun…

 cute picture of kids on tube


35270_683252584788_60704815_37356029_836118_n jordan jumping into water

jordan and rayna on tube 3 kids in boat 

kids at judies

Most of the time, these little faces are dirty with the remains of ice cream, pop cycles, berries or whatever it is that they have eaten. Nonetheless, their smiles wrap themselves around my heart.


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kids at beach

…..and boating


….and building sand castles…

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we have an

auntie that

is so talented

for such things!

Someone from Florida talked me into cutting a Mohawk for little man…

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And he loves it! I was going to cut it the next day but he insists on keeping it so I haven’t  had the heart to cut it yet.


We went strawberry picking 3 times.

   CIMG0044    Their mouths were red from eating and  fingers red from picking…


We made yummy treats like strawberry rhubarb crisp…

 strawberry ruhbarb desert

…and strawberry rhubarb pie…

strawberry ruhbarb pie… and strawberry jam…and now we have lots of strawberry's in our freezer for future treats….hopefully for some strawberry rhubarb slush this coming weekend.

We mastered the art of making homemade pizza’s on the grill…

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After I cook one side of the dough, they each put on their own toppings. They love making their own pizza’s… brittanys pictures July 12 173brittanys pictures July 12 167 brittanys pictures July 12 176

….but love eating it even more!

brittanys pictures July 12 177

If you have never tried pizza that is made on the grill, you must! It not only tastes better, it keeps all the mess and heat outside! We recently made buffalo hot wing pizza and it was fantastic.

We brought the zoo crew to the zoo…

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We tried to get them to stay there but they insisted on coming back home with us.

Playing dress up and having photo shoots by this wonderful 11 year old girl…


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Eating lots of ice-cream, pop cycles and freezes'…


And of course playing with the water hose…

 Aidyn drinking from hose

Making funny faces…


And picnics…

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Lots of camp fires and roasting marshmallows…


jordan roasting marshmellows aidyn marshmellow fingers

It wouldn’t be summer without parades…IMG_2139 


…and all the candy we get at them!

We’ve already seen a couple and will see another this coming weekend.

Watching fire works…

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It’s lots of fun eating popcorn & parade candy while waiting for the fireworks to start!


A family poker pub crawl for the adult kids in the family…

family picture 

…with my crazy fun family…

group picture in front of bus

My most favorite moments have been of not doing much of anything but hanging out and just being together.

This summer I have been convicted about the importance of living in the here & now…of embracing those I love and not letting unimportant things steal time away from us.

Life is too short to stand by and watch it happening. Life is too short to not participate in it.

I wish there were pictures of all the cuddling we have done…and of all the hugs & kisses that fill up my days.

I constantly take pictures in my head for the days they are gone from here.

I wish you could hear the laughter and giggles…their little voices…the little conversations that I over hear that are priceless.

I embrace all of it because I know all too soon it will grow quiet here and I will yearn for their voices to fill up my home once again.

Never in a thousand years did I think I would be here surrounded by such love.

I did not ask for all of this but somehow it found me.

It really is true…I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I am, right where I’m suppose to be.

Right here in the middle of all this crazy chaos being called Mom, mommy and grandma.

Even though I am still not feeling good, and I am in pain, life is good.

I wish there was a way to bottle up all this goodness.

I wish for all people to have such an abundance of love in their lives.

These are my summer time faces. IMG_1814

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IMG_2128 Jason drinking a beer

gerry holding up his cards adam and michelle

They toss & turn my heart.

I hope your summer is filled up with such smiles!

I know many of you are having great summers too…I have been stopping by and reading occasionally but haven’t had time to comment. I do think of each of you and look forward to stopping by your place soon!

Love & hugs, Lori



Anonymous said...

Lori, it always does my heart good when you post pics of your lovely family. How wonderful you have them and are enjoying this summer together!

Feel better soon, my friend.


SciFi Dad said...

I'm glad you posted this update.

It looks (and sounds) like you're having some good times. You deserve every minute.

Busy Bee Suz said...

So glad to get this update from you!
I love the little man's haircut as well as all those smiling faces.
Keep busy making memories.

Brittany said...

:) What an amazing summer we've had thus far! :)) Love it!

TechnoBabe said...

Wow, you have a filled and fun summer going on in your family. I hope you are feeling well.

Brian Miller said...

wow. looks like you have been filling your summer with the most wonderful things...some beautiful faces in those pics!

Jacquelyn Stager said...

Lori, PLEASE. Tell us where you get your energy. I bet I'm not the only one who could use some!!! What an awesome summer of memories you are making not only for yourself, but for your whole family!

My philosophy as I get older is the live each day intentionally and to the fullest.

I love what you said: "Life is to short not to participate in it"... I'm stealing that...but I'll give you credit, friend!

Love & hugs!

Kit Kat said...

OH Lori! I love the pictures!! I am so happy that you are able to realize how much love you have in your life! And even more happy that you are able to enjoy it through all the pain! Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful post!

Anonymous said...

That sure is a lot of smiling!!!!!

Jason, as himself said...

Yay for the happy times! They make all the other stuff so much more barable. I'm glad you're enjoying.

Together We Save said...

These are amazing pictures!! Looks like a wonderful summer.

Buckeroomama said...

"We tried to get them to stay there [zoo] but they insisted on coming back home with us."

LOL! I loved that! It's so good to see and read that you are having a wonderful summer, Lori. :)

The Incredible Woody said...

I could not have asked for a more perfect summer for you. Enjoy!

otin said...

WOW! Who needs to blog when you have all of those fun activities and a group of happy kids!! You are having a better time than me!

mommytoalot said...

What an absolutely uplifting post. Summer is the best isnt' it? I love your term.." zoo crew"..too funny.
The pictures are full of joy and happiness...Keep enjoying this wonderful summer

Hilary said...

It always warms my heart to see the smiling faces of your Littles. Thanks for this wonderful update. I wish you many more days of the same.

Debbie said...

Oh my lord are you having a fun filled, loving summer!! Awesome!!! Those kids are beautiful and so are you!

Kelly said...

Beautifull pics!!
You remind me so much when I lived in short term apartments, and my little neightbours looked so similar to this kids... so cute!
I really miss them
thanks for sharing, really nice