Friday, July 31, 2009

Five on Friday

Ta' heck with trying to find time to blog. This summer life with four kids does just not lend itself to lots of time to blog. I've been working on lots of different photo projects in my free time and not had any extra time to do some blogging. I decided to sneak in a Five on Friday blog on this last day of July!

1. I can't believe the changes in my youngest son in the last month or so. I woke up one day and the boy who spent so much time drawing in the dirt during T-ball season is now throwing and catching like a champ. He has been begging for anyone to play catch with him and it all just clicked. Not only that, but he is swimming like a champ too and now can dive for things at the bottom of the pool and do some crawl stroke. I'm just in awe of the changes in him at 5.5 +. I can't wait for him to start Kindergarten. One day I was thinking he was looking particularly handsome so I followed him outside with my camera.

2. Jack had a very last minute invite to play in a baseball tournament last weekend. He was hesitant at first, but I convinced him it would be fun. He played for a different town where he only new a couple of kids. He played 5 games in three days and did very well overall. Had some good hits, made some good defensive plays and was very happy he decided to play. It was very strange for me to see him in a different color uniform.

3. Guess who is getting ready for school? She picked out her 'pack pack' at Target the other day....girly fatigue print. That says more tomboy than girly-girl to me...

4. I did something cool. One of my favorite bloggers gave me the idea to do a collage of words on I created on and am using it in the baseball book I am currently working on for Jack and Ben's team. What do you think?

5. The theme for the July's RAW photo contest is "Ripples". They were looking for different kinds of water movement. There are some seriously awesome pictures submitted. You can see them here. I decided on this cute one of Chica drinking from the bubbler last summer. We'll see if I get in the top 50.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Officially Three

In her mind, now she's three. We gathered for Chica's official birthday party yesterday. The weather has just been terrible this summer and the forecast was very iffy. I wished very hard for any rain and storms to hold off until the party was over. Fortunately, the wishing paid off. It wasn't the perfect weather to be at a spray park, but after I looked at the pictures I snapped I realized the kids had a pretty fun time anyways.

Chica didn't get too wet, but she had fun dodging the cold water squirting everywhere.

And here are some happy faces on her friends and their families....

I ususally like to make the kids' birthday cakes but there was too little time and too many people so I went with the store bought Dora cake. Chica was thrilled of course.

She didn't give me any trouble about posing with her princess birthday hat that she got for her first birthday. I'm hoping to take this picture every year until she's married.
And here she is having her friends sing happy birthday and blowing out the candles.....

So now...she is officially three.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Wayback Wednesday - The Group

The years fly by. Especially when you have kids. While visiting with our special friends on Cape Cod I grabbed a shot of the group of our kids together enjoying ice cream. Here they all are. I think it's pretty easy to tell which kids are mine (fair-skinned) and which are not (dark-skinned).

I've been remiss on my Wayback Wednesday posts. So I scanned in some old shots of the crew as far back as I could find them. It started here back in 2003. Same beach....same afternoon ice cream...

A couple years later in 2005 we have the same shot. Luke is now on the seen and not quite 2. The "Two ball Screwball" was a popular ice cream choice that year I see.

A couple years later in 2007 we had to grab our group shot at the big playscape after Jack and Ben finished the Chatham A's baseball camp. Chica was just about one year old. Ben was having a meltdown because I believe he got caught in a pickle during camp.

The years just continue to fly by. Hoping we'll have many more of these group shots to come, though!!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Say Cheese

One of the reasons we went to see our special friends on Cape Cod was so that I could take a family photo of these great friends. I was very nervous because I'm just not that experienced and was afraid I'd screw it up after Jules went and bought great coordinating outfits and then went through the effort of getting everyone all dolled up. Then I realized that I forgot the lens I was planning on using at home. I was a nervous wreck!!

But the weather was beautiful and it worked out well. Here are some shots of our buddies.

And one last one taken back at the cottage with one of my new favorite dogs, Ellie.

Friday, July 17, 2009

A Summer Tradition

We were lucky enough to be invited back to visit our special friends on Cape Cod last week. We were packed up and ready to go after the boys' last baseball game. It made losing and being eliminated from a chance at the division championships a little easier knowing we were heading for f.u.n. !

Our special friends include one of my oldest, dearest and bestest friends on this earth (Jules), her awesome husband and three amazing kids (and one dog who I will blog about later). We crashed at their house for three nights and had two great beach days.

The first day we went for the waves!! Each of the bigger kids took turns getting tumbled by the waves. It reminded me of how Jules and I used to do the same thing together in the cold waters of Maine!

Here's Ben's face peaking through the waves..

And Jack's expression after battling the surf!

Luke was back to getting himself buried in the sand

Beach day two catered to the younger crowd.....and those who liked critter catching and digging. We went to our favorite salt water pond near town.

Here's Chica and Jules' oldest beauty.

And here's my biggest critter-catcher admiring his work. Anyone notice his freaky double-jointed elbow?

And here is the whole group enjoying midday ice-cream.

One other fun thing that Chris and the boys did was go out on a lobster boat to check traps for lobsters! I made Chris take the little camera and here are a few shots he came back with.

Ben and Jack holding some bait...

Some seals off in the distance!!

Just a quick little re-cap of our wonderful weekend. I used our pocket-sized camera for all the pictures and the quality is nowhere near my DSLR. But I learned my lesson last year when I got spots on my sensor from bringing out the good camera to the beach!! So no more of that.

Our summer just would not have felt complete without a visit to see these buddies of ours.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

An End to Another Great Season

Our big boys' baseball season came to an end last Thursday. They had finished 12-1-1 for the season which was second place in their division. They won their first round playoff game and then had to play the only team they lost to during the season. It was a close one, but they lost 5-4. They battled hard and we were so proud of them.

So now the season is over and I no longer have to wash uniforms, search for green socks, clean and fill water bottles, worry about whether it's my turn to be the snack mom, etc. It's bittersweet, actually, because I just love watching the boys play. But they had been practicing since about March and probably need a little break before the craziness of school and fall sports start.

It was a great season. They practiced hard and learned a lot and it totally paid off. We weren't sure whether to play Ben in U-9 or U-11 this year. He could have played U-9 with many of his classmates and friends but we decided to have him stay with his team and play up. We definitely made the right decision for him. He did a great job overall and matured a lot from last year. And....did not miss one practice or game all season!! He played mostly 2nd base and centerfield and I think one of the things he does the best is slide! Here are a couple pics of him from the season.

Jack also had a great year. He predominently played catcher, pitcher and short stop. He's a calm, cool and confident player and one of his best qualities is his aggressive base running. He loved stealing all the way around to home as many times as he could. I loved nothing more than seeing he and his brother make plays together. Here are a couple of my favorites of Jack from this season.

All's well that end's well. I'm very proud of these boys!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

This for That

She made me go outside and "push her higher" on the swings the other evening. So I grabbed my camera and made her let me take some pictures of her in return. The little bugger can really pump well for a three year-old.

I think I did better in the deal.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th!

Happy 4th to everyone!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Happy Campers

After his work quarter ended Chris decided to take Jack for a little overnight camping. They packed up lots of gear and headed up north with a destination of Monadnock State Park. Ben would have been invited too but he's busy with a cool soccer camp this week. They planned on hiking up the mountain so unfortunately Luke didn't get the nod.

I sent the men with my little camera and was so excited with the images they brought me back. They hiked all the way to the top of the Mount Monadnock and I guess it was no easy hike. A lot of the trail is big boulders. And at the top of the mountain there was virtually no visibility. But the campers made it to the top and back down in time for dinner, some knot tying practice, a couple games of war and then sleep. There was also a nice storm that passed through which brought some nice lightening.

Here are some of my favorite pictures ~

Look at all of this gear for two guys and one camping overnight. If Jack is anything like his dad he will have no shortage of backpacks, bags, packs, and other Dapper Dan gear. This was taken right after they arrived and Jack was having freeze dried Beef Stroganoff.

The two-man tent which I know only so well after some camping back in our 'dating stage'.

This picture gives us some idea of the the steep, rocky trail. They got quite the workout.

I like the composition of this one.

Woo hoo - made it to the top.

My two happy campers. I'm so happy they got this picture taken.

And some marshmallow roasting before bed.

They arrived home this morning with all of their gear, without and injuries and pretty pooped. But I would say it was a perfect father-son bonding experience for my campers.