There are so many things throughout my day that go undocumented or seen but never talked about. For instance, often times when you lift up Gress’s pillow to make his bed (which happens rarely because he usually makes his bed most days), you find a BIG ol stash of toys under it. Who knew that you could fit 20 small toys under that one pillow. And they are as random as they come. Nuts, bolts, army men, farm animals, a string necklace with a sea shell on it, coins, and maybe a stuffed animal or two. I really thought most of this stuff resided on his dresser. This day he had a typical stash there as well. See for yourself. A rainbow, nuts, a pig and even a mouse that is hiding above the bats.
Gress is great at baseball. And Mcree is great at chasing the ball and then not giving it back, or running away with the bat and screaming at the top of his lungs when Gress goes to retrieve it.
There is a lot of wrestling, tickling, and laughing in our house. I don’t think a day goes by without a little rough housing. I guess that is just life with boys.
I often wonder if Mera gets daily attention. Then I think that she probably wishes she didn’t get so much attention. Mcree does love to hug her, which means smushing his face against hers.
I LOVE getting locally grown vegetables each week. And I LOVE my farmers! The best tomatoes I have ever tasted!
Dress up clothes always make me laugh….
And I love seeing my kids about to save the day in their super hero capes. Makes my heart melt!
We had a birthday party on Saturday to celebrate Gress turning 5. Even though he has only watched spiderman a handful of times, he really wanted to have a spiderman birthday. Can’t really fight a 5 year old on that so, spiderman it was. We threw a party in the neighborhood park that has the water fountains you can run around in. We had it set up picnic style in honor of Memorial Day (I mean Spiderman) and several families came to help us celebrate. It was a blast! So thankful we get to celebrate another year with our awesome son!
I asked Rad last night where the last month went and we both looked at each other with a puzzled look on our faces. It is hard to believe that we moved just over a month ago. These weeks have flown by and honestly, I can’t tell you what I have done with my time. I think my scheduled has been so packed that I was just in “keep moving” mode. When I finally made it home from the whirlwind traveling job with Wrangler Jeans (which was quite fun), I couldn’t wait to just “be” with all my boys.
A little bit about the Wrangler job. Our project was photographing some of the top bull riders, ropers, a rancher turned pro football player and a musician wearing the latest style of Wrangler Jeans. Each place we went seemed to be my new favorite part. The first part we were photographing at the Professional Bull Riding competition in Boise, Idaho. These are the top bull riders in the world. We got the chance to shoot a Brazilian and another guy from Wisconsin. Two very talented and well mannered guys. We watched them ride their bulls from the platform where they mounted the bulls. IT WAS INTENSE! And then in Redding, California we photographed 2 ropers, one at a rodeo and the other at a family ranch. What a great experience. And then on to Terra Bella, California, a short 7 hour drive South, we met up with a family that had a ranch and they had a son that now plays for the NY Giants, who won the Superbowl. We hung out with them on the football field and then at their family ranch amongst the California Orange Groves. What a great humble family. Each part was unique and amazing. It’s a good thing I like the beach better than the ranches because I could have easily stayed.
I did come home wanting my boys to have a few new manners as well as find a family activity that we all like to do together. I loved watching the one family ride and rope together. Even mom was a professional roper! You could tell it was the thing that really bonded them as a family.
I am so glad to be back home. You better believe that I went right to the beach AND the farm when I got back!!! Here are some photos from the last few weeks…
There is nothing better than the beach. Actually, there is nothing better than having a friend invite you to the beach house they are staying at. Tuesday early morning through Wednesday afternoon the boys and I hung out with our sweet friend Melissa, aka the farmer’s wife, on the beach and in a great beach house that someone let her stay in. It was so fun to be around her in that environment with the surf, and sand, and pelicans and seagulls when we are usually around farm animals and dirt. At one point the seagulls had descended on our snacks and I looked at Elijah and he looked quite content making balck balcking noises at the birds. It was just us girls and our cute boys on the beach. I was in heaven! Gress got sad when we had to leave to go back home (and secretly I did too). We had too much fun!! THANKS Melissa for the invite!!!!
Oh how I wish I could pack these little guys up and take them on my next work trip with me. Especially Gress. I am headed to Idaho in a few days (then California the next week and Texas the week after) to produce a shoot with Wrangler Jeans. We will be shooting cowboys in their jeans before they get on the bull at the rodeo. My jaw dropped when I heard about this project. Very little production, basically just show up and shoot..that’s my kind of job. But my days of easily leaving 2 kids and a husband who is slammed with work are dwindling…and I am ok with that. THIS is more important than any of that.
Today it rained. Since outside is way more fun than inside (or so Gress thinks) we decided to play in the rain. I’m not quite sure Mcree even knew what was going on. Because there were not big enough puddles, Gress requested I turn on the hose (which I did) to make even more puddles. I did draw the line and spraying him down with the hose. 🙂
And tonight we had a little family time at the Sand Gnats baseball game. We got there so early we entered our name (Ok really Rad did even with me begging him not to) into a drawing to sit on the Sealy Posturepedic Bed and watch the game. Well, guess who won and guess who got to sit on the bed. THAT’S RIGHT! And there were several people at the game that knew us so that made it extra funny. Also, Gress got to go on the field between innings and ride on a blow up horse to race another kid. It was oh so cute as the horse was way too big for his little legs. He was so proud of himself. While Gress loves Nate the Gnat mascot, Mcree is happy to give him peanuts and then scream and run away! I am happy to say we stayed until the end of the game AND the Sand Gnats won!!
And we celebrated a special someone’s birthday this week! HAPPY BIRTHDAY RAD!!!!
You would have thought it was a Saturday with all the family time we crammed into today. There were so many things happening in and around Savannah that we had to see. There was the Tall Ships Festival which happens only every 15 years. They bring HUGE ships to the river and you can tour them. Since we don’t like crowds, we decided to show up early before the event started and walk around and ride the ferry to see them from the river. I’m pretty sure Gress was more interested in what was floating in the river than the actual boats but we had a great time together. I think being on the water only reminded Rad and I how much we want to be on our own boat.
Then after naps, we all needed a break and Savannah College of Art and Design was having a Sand Arts Festival at Tybee so we headed out there to see all the sand castles. Ahh, there is nothing better than the beach with ALL of my boys. I think I was smiling the WHOLE time watching Rad with them. They were playing in the water, jumping waves, and just being boys. We stayed almost until the sun set. It was perfect.
This at the farm Melissa gave this to Mcree….and funny thing is, Gress used to have one just like it.
This is Mcree…..
and this was Gress..
Withdrawal. That is what we were feeling from being away from the farm for over a month.
Refreshed, renewed and wanting more. That is what Gress and I feel after today’s adventure on the farm.
The farm has changed quite a bit. The trees have all bloomed, the field is mostly planted and growing like crazy, the chicks, baby goats and bunnies have all grown and or multiplied and the pork chops today were delicious (fried pork chops and gravy, yea come on!)…although I do miss seeing the pigs.
It was so good to see the farmer, his wife and sweet baby Elijah who is now walking. We have missed you Williams. We went to visit, and maybe work a little. Gress worked way harder than me (actually I didn’t even lift a finger…okay, I watered some asparagus that were grown from seeds and won’t actually produce asparagus bundles for 3 years). We were flat out spoiled. We were fed amazing food (Gress ate 2 pork chops and could have kept going), Gress and Mcree loved playing with their buddy Elijah, and we walked around the farm checking in to say hi to all the animals. The farmers actually named 2 of the baby chickens after the boys. Gress so wanted to hold them but they are pretty skittish so he just hand fed them instead. I love watching the farmer and Melissa teach Gress. They are so gentle, patient and interested in helping him to learn. Gress really wanted to know how the pigs were killed and the farmer explained it on a level Gress could understand. We all kept looking at each other wondering if he would be traumatized. Nope, just curious!
When you are at the farm, you can’t help but look around and see the magnitude of responsibility the farmers have in their care. It is huge. They feed so many families clean healthy food, they care for their animals needs and for their own household’s needs. And it is a LOT of work on a daily basis. I am so thankful for their dedication to my family. And I am so happy that we get to see how it all works first hand. You are doing an amazing job Melissa and Andy! So proud of you guys.
Gress instantly fell asleep as soon as we left the farm while Mcree loudly babbled the whole way home.
And many people asked how the boys have adjusted to the move. Just great. I think they are glad to be able to move anywhere in the house without tripping over some item waiting to be packed or again having chairs to sit in instead of on boxes.
Before we moved, Gress could’t resist taking one last swim. The water was quite cold but Gress didn’t care. And little Mcree wiggled his way into the water walking off the step multiple times without any fear. OH BOY! We already miss the pool!
And since we don’t have the pool, guess we will just have to go to the beach more! This last week we were there twice! Mcree kept following Gress around plopping down to dig right next to Gress. Gress would move and Mcree would follow. It was sweet to watch.
Our garage is still quite packed and Mcree doesn’t really like it! But he does like wearing hats (he even thinks the potty seat is one).
Gress went to a superhero birthday party. It was so fun to see all the kids dressed up.
And last but not least, we have a new pet in the house (and I am not talking about the mice..that’s another story!). Gress has a new fish!! The fish doesn’t yet have a name and is quite shy. He is bigger and fancier than the last two so hoping he works out! 🙂
Only a handful of you knew Rad and I when we lived in Iowa over 13 years ago. I recently found a photo that Rad and I had taken for the church directory before we got married. Let’s just say we look quite different. (I considered showcasing the photo here but it is pretty bad). I would like to think I have changed dramatically after 13+ years. But it took my long time friend coming to visit to show me that many parts of me are just the same. Nik and I hadn’t seen each other in years. The last time we spent significant time together was well over 6 years ago. I forgot what it was like to be around her. I forgot parts of her personality..but I remembered that we were kindred spirits. I forgot how easy she is to be around and how I can be completely be myself around her. She is so many wonderful things wrapped into my dear sweet friend. She just took 5 days away from her family to come hang out with us. We sat on the beach, walked around downtown Savannah, shared meals together and caught up on life. My heart is full. THANKS NIK (and John for sending her this way) for taking time out of your very busy life to share your life with us!!!!