Monday, August 22, 2011

FAMILY REUNION

    Every year, just before school starts, my Dads side of the family hosts a big Family Reunion at the family farm.  My dads cousin is an avid golfer and has actually turned his mostly unused pasture into a very very nicely groomed 18 hole golf course called "The Pastures" (which is part of the PPGA - The Pastures Professional Golfers Association - HA!).  The day consists of a "Cousins Tournament" and some amazing food prepared by Pat (who owns a local eatery in town). 

 

     Each year, I try to get a group picture of all the kids and each year I fail.  True - they are all present in the picture, but never, not ever, can I get them all to look the same way.  Maybe next year I suppose. 




     I did happen to catch some pretty awesome shots of the kids individually - and it amazes me how lucky I get with pictures somedays...  like this one (which happens to be my newest most favorite picture I've ever taken!!) -  She was about to climb up on this old tractor when I said "Hey - Smile!"... she turned to look and THIS is what I got.  A little vignette-ing and Voila!  Perfect light - perfect pose.  LUCKY shot!




     And then comes Lars.  And there goes Lars.  I'm just thankful he held still for 1 or 2 seconds so I could take a picture of him.  He was busy.  The whole day.  But man did that kid sleep last night!!!


    

     Elle had a blast and made new friends who helped her find a caterpillar of her very own (it now lives in a diaper-wipes container because he wanted a sun-roof - smart kid!).  She was WIPED by the time I got her to sit still and take a picture... the day before she had been a flowergirl in a wedding, and the day before that she had stayed at her Grandparents house...  she was exhausted to say the least!


     Her Grandma earns 100% of the credit for this beautiful little girl that day - she chose her dress, did her hair, her nails, found her perfectly matching shoes - and when she couldn't find ivory colored socks - she did what any grandmother would do - she tossed them in the coffee pot!  And it worked!  This woman knows more tricks and tips than anyone I've ever known - she's awesome!!!




     Elle and her sister had lots of fun taking pictures (for 3.5 minutes - then they wanted nothing more to do with them)...  and Lars...


     
     He sat for one picture.  Thankfully it was a decent one.  He's not smiling by the way - he's showing us his teeth.  We just got REALLY REALLY lucky that it happens to look like a smile when he does it.  And also - his shirt is really navy blue and not black like his sisters dress - but nobody will ever notice - and maybe I can photoshop it black, huh?  (again, another tip from Grandma!).  So shhhhhhhh!!!

     I hope everyone reading this had a wonderful weekend - it's starting to feel more and more like fall here - and truth be told - I CANNOT WAIT!!!

    

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Feeling Fall-ish Already...

     I joked with Brandt over the weekend that with the crisp morning air we were experiencing, it was getting closer to tree decorating time.  In less than 90 days, it's very likely that us Minne-snow-tans will deal with beautiful tree-scapes such as this.  In the past, we've had blizzards by the end of October... and for whatever reason, I have a feeling we're in for one heck of a winter this year! 


    
     One thing I truly love / hate / love / hate/ love about Minnesota is the changing of the seasons.  There is always something to look forward to - which is how life should be lived in my opinion.  Fall brings us bonfires, cool air, sweatshirts, pictures of the kids in piles of leaves, pumpkins, crock-pot meals, and lots of wonderful foods from the garden.

     It's a time to button down the hatches so to speak...  mow the lawn for the last time - change over the John Deere from lawnmower blades to the snow-blower attachment, take a few walks around the yard and find all the toys that have been scattered the past few months... open the windows, turn off the air, clean out the garage, the trucks, and fill the freezer.

 

For today, however, there are still memories of the fair - just a few weeks old...  and a summer wedding coming up next weekend... a family reunion the day after... and a family vacation the week after.  I still have plenty of pool pictures that need editing... family pictures that need taking... a fall Harvest party that needs planning - a house that needs cleaning, and 2 more decent sized house projects that need finishing. 



      There is however, definitely FALL in the air today - and Christmas on my mind.  Already.  Yet.  Still, I suppose.  In spite of the warm weather, green grass & sunshine - I'm already somewhat living several weeks ahead of myself...  and editing pictures from the past!


      What an incredible summer it's been!  Many days by the pool, a day at the County Fair, the big girls spent lots of time at our friends cabin with their daughter - and even got to spend a week with their Grandparents at a cabin too!  We've had several family dinners with our extended family, and worked all-together too much.  There was "exciting" weather - the loss of 18 trees, a pool, part of our deck, some shingles & some siding...  flowers were planted and a garden too (100% of the THANKS goes to my Dad...  Bumpa Jim as the kids call him)... We finally splurged and got a front-load washer/dryer (on clearance nonetheless!!!) - and my last baby moved out of his crib & into a twin-sized bed (which was more traumatic for me than him I think!)... 

 I believe I'm now quite ready 
to move along to my fall. 
I've filled my summer with memories - 
and taken pictures of them all.
I'll file them all away nicely
when I'm old and have more time
And will likely become teary-eyed
as I remember you learning to climb.
It's onto new seasons and holidays
where photographs are waiting to be made
Thanksgiving dinner, Halloween, 
Christmas toys and games to be played.
Always something to move us forward
Growing, Changing always new
Today is real and in my grasp
Your little boy hug so true...
These memories move right along with me
everyday... they have been made to last.
Though each time I find some spare minutes
I recall all these days of my past.

By:  Me  :)