June 3

I had a photo session this morning, and Chris and the kids met me up there for a family adventure afterward. They played on the playground while I shot my session, and then we hiked the 1.1 mile trail at the back of the park. There were some steep hills, but it was a lot of fun!

Pre-hike family selfie.

It's dark, but aren't they cute?

We also stopped by Aldi and bought the kids each a hydration backpack. They are so excited for future hikes!
The backpacks are adult sized, but fit Caleb and Daisy well.

After dinner, we went up to the pool. I have a feeling we will be spending a lot of time there this summer!
Eli found this water cannon (he calls it a "shooter") and was in love with it.

Caleb and Chris had contests to see who could make the biggest splash while going off the diving board.

Eli watched.

Chris is really good at this game!

Hi, Daisy!

 The kid can't figure out how to make it work, but he doesn't care.

Seriously. How cute are we?

As we finished, I discovered my new favorite carry: the towel torso carry. 
It is literally a beach towel as a baby carrier, and it is awesome.

Lily approved!

I picked a flower for Daisy as we left, and she asked to have her picture taken with it when we got home.

Sweet girl.

June 2

Today was Friday, so it was another adventure day! Today we chose to go to Mastodon State Historic Site, where mastodon fossils were found. Caleb currently wants to be a marine paleontologist when he grows up, so this was right up his alley. We packed a lunch and headed out right after swim practice. (Daisy still only kickboarded. One of these days she will attempt to swim again!)

Our first stop was the museum, where we met a mastodon.
Don't let their faces fool you. The kids were fascinated.

Eli liked it, too!

Then we did some hiking! (Sorry this is so green - I'm too lazy to edit cell phone pictures. Also, it really was pretty green in the woods. Caleb was commenting on it.) Eli was on my back for the majority of our hike, but I let him down for this pic.

Lily held Eli's hand as they walked, and it was adorable. 
Also, she carried her baby Ludia the whole way.
Also, I told her before we left the house to choose shoes for hiking. She chose her silver Easter sandals.

The kids loved finding a cake left over from our city's birthday celebration a few years ago. Caleb is making his mastodon face. His arms are supposed to be tusks, obviously. 

Four kids on a cake!

Daisy on a cake. 

Lily and Eli on a cake.

And then we drove down to the picnic and creek area. This was definitely the highlight of the trip for the kids. 
It was just a wide, shallow, rocky creek with clear water. Perfect for playing, and lots of families enjoying it.

We only spent an hour at the creek, but we could have easily spend a whole day. We will have to go back again soon!

And then in the evening, Daisy and I attended her friend Hannah's birthday party. 
Daisy was so excited about the whole thing, and then she got there and got nervous. She clung to me and refused to do or say anything. It was just like the swimming situation, and it left me feeling really frustrated. The party was only an hour and a half long, and she was clingy and scared for the first hour. Eventually she warmed up and had a blast, but seriously. I have no idea how to parent this child.

June 1

Happy June!
Just like every weekday morning for the next 6 weeks, we were at the pool this morning. Just like the past two days, Daisy refused to do anything except kickboard. I have decided that we will do both morning and evening practices until she is able to swim the length of the pool.

After morning practice, Jill and her girls came over!
We had so much fun!
But wait. 
Where's Naomi?
She was just hanging out in Daisy's bed, reading a book instead of playing with the kids. Funny girl!

Later, Eli asked to go up in the pretty Wenweave wrap I am borrowing from my friend Andrea. When I took our picture, he did this:
"This my MONSTER face!"


I personally think he's a pretty cute little monster! 

Tonight we ate dinner up at the pool while Caleb and Daisy did their second practice of the day.

Lily did some swimming, too. 

She loves to kick!

He fell right after this.

Don't worry, Mom. He's fine.

Caleb and Daisy finished with practice (she still reused to do anything except kickboard) and came out of the water to eat their dinner. 
This was when we realized that together, their outfits made the colors of a watermelon.

and this was when I discovered that a beach towel torso carry is my new favorite thing ever.

He likes it, too!

May 31

Today was supposed to be library day, but instead it was Botanical Garden day because some friends from MOPS were all meeting there. But first, swim team practice.
And before that, family reading time.
I feel like I share pictures like this at least once a week, but it never fails to warm my heart to get up out of bed in the morning and find this.

I mean, really. How sweet are they?

Swim practice was uneventful - Daisy refused to do anything except kickboard. That girl is stubborn like her mama! We left the pool and headed straight to the Garden.
Except Wednesdays are the day that it is free for every county resident, so the place was packed

I have no idea why my children's faces look like this. I blame it on their father, even though he wasn't there. Only he could breed children with such goofy faces.

We only stayed at the Garden for about an hour before we  needed to go home for naps, but it was still a lot of fun!

May 30


Our tree lost its giant branch on May 6th. We spent the next week getting bids from five different companies, and finally signed a contract on May 12. The company initially told us they would be out within two weeks, and then a major storm hit and we got delayed. Finally, we got a call last night that they were coming in the morning. The workers were here by 6:45, and had chainsaws blazing by 7:00 am. It was a beautiful thing to watch!

Before the workers officially got started, the kids stood on the deck and said goodbye to the tree.
I'm sad to see it go, but when I look at how that one limb destroyed their swing set, I know it was the right choice.

As soon as the workers turned on their chainsaws, I made the kids come inside.

They brought a bobcat, a bucket truck, a flatbed truck, a chipper and trailer, and 4 workers. Eli was quite impressed with the machinery.

I popped popcorn and they enjoyed their front row seats.

Hi, Lily!

It was such a big deal that Chris delayed leaving for work so he could watch, and we skipped the very first swim team practice of the season. (Don't worry; there was an evening practice we could attend.)

Lily's tutu cracks me up!
(Doesn't the deck look nice? Chris and I have been working to power wash and sand it, and we intended to stain it yesterday until some stupid pop-up thunderstorms ruined everything. Boo.)

By 8:30, the workers had the fallen limb and the swing set removed. The sandbox gets to stay. Even with the limb gone, the devastation is pretty apparent. The neighbor's hedge is mangled, our yard is destroyed, and the garden fence is a mess.

They took a break, then brought in the bucket truck. 
Chris missed all of this fun. 

However, my mom came over to enjoy it with us!

Lily showed Grandma how she can write her name.

See? She's adding an extra letter or two in it, but it's pretty good for a three year old!

Eli enjoyed Grandma snuggles. 

And the workers worked on! By 3:30, all that remained of the tree was a pile of sawdust in the yard. Our yard is completely destroyed, and much sunnier than it was before. I'm going to miss that tree!

But then it was time for swim team practice! Daisy jumped in and tried to swim a lap of the pool, but had to cling to the wall a few times and felt nervous after that. She then insisted on kickboards and kickboards only - no more swimming.

She is a very good kickboarder, though!

Caleb was fearless and dominated.

Happy kickboarder!

Cold swimmer.

Caleb says that swimming is just his thing.

Meanwhile, the little ones splashed.

Lily made a new friend, and practiced her kicking. She will be ready when kickboard team starts next week!

Gosh, isn't he cute?
It was a pretty eventful day!