Summer Fun

Somewhere in the midst of the sleepless nights, the dirty diapers, the temper tantrums and the endless “No. No! NO!!!” of parenting, there is a whole lot of fun, especially if you’re willing to take some time off, let your kids be kids, and go along for the ride.

Since coming back from our NY trip, it’s been go, go, go around here. Between housework, deadlines, photo assignments, finishing up projects for my sister Kassie’s wedding next week, and Steven and I starting the Insanity workouts, it’s been a busy couple of weeks. So, when I got a chance to take a day off to meet up with my friend Cristen and her son Julian for a playdate, I jumped at the chance, loaded Cadence up in the car, and headed out for some fun.

Since Cristen lives down in Kansas, we chose the town of Marysville as our meet-up spot. It’s a little over halfway for me, but it’s got an AWESOME park with tons of things for the kiddos to climb on, jump off, slide down, and run around to keep them busy for hours. Knowing that it was supposed to be in the 90’s, we brought along a couple garden hoses, just in case the kiddos got overheated and needed a little cooling off.

Cadence has talked about her friend “Julley” since she first met him over a month ago. The two hit it off immediately on our first playdate, and Cadence has been smitten ever since. The moment the two of them stepped out of the cars, they hugged, and then hurried off to play.

Seriously, how adorable are these two???

After playing a bit, the kiddos started asking for lunch, so we spread out a blanket and had ourselves a little picnic. Then, it was time for real crazy fun to begin…

When we turned on the hose, Julian wasn’t quite sure he wanted to get wet. Cadence, on the other hand, barreled right in and was soaked within minutes. I’m sure Julian was wondering what the heck was up with this wild girl…

But as soon as he saw a big muddy puddle to jump in, Julian couldn’t help but join in the fun. And, of course, as soon as Julian’s shirt came off, Cadence couldn’t keep hers on. I’m sure, someday, she’ll be embarrassed by these photos, but hey, how do you explain to a 2-year-old that it’s more ladylike to keep your shirt on? You’d be wasting your breath even trying.

The funniest part was, the wetter Cadence got, the lower her pants sagged. Now, to be fair, if I’d thought she would be running around like a little gangsta, I probably would have put a different pair of pants on her, but I actually thought they might fit. I mean, they’re 18-month size. She’s 2 1/2. They should fit by now, right?

Wrong.

I guess I shouldn’t be shocked. Steven said a bunch of the adults on his block gave him the nickname “tush-less” growing up because he was so skinny. Looks like Cadence might have inherited his skinny butt gene.

And you know it was only a matter of time before Cadence’s full-speed sprinting through the puddles with drooping pants caught up to her. We had a minor two-kid pile-up, but Cadence and Julian just laughed it off and headed off to find a bigger puddle to jump in…

There are so many fun photos from the day, but I definitely think these are my favorites, because they seriously remind me of The Beatles Abbey Road. If we had two more kids in the playdate, we might have been onto something…

Cristen and I got a little nervous when we saw the police truck slowly drive by. We hoped we weren’t violating some sort of water restriction or something, and both held our breath for a moment wondering how the kiddos would fare if their Momma’s got hauled to jail. But the cops must have seen that it was just a couple kids having fun in the sprinkler and went on their way. Phew!

Cadence took a quick apple break…

While Julian teased his Mom and threatened to sit on her with his soggy wet butt…

Seriously, how cute are these two?

Aaaaaahhhhh! 🙂

And the think I love best about hanging out with a fellow photographer and her kid is that I’m not the only weirdo rolling around on the ground with a camera glued to my face. Haha! 🙂

Finally, Julian decided he’d had enough of the water, and spent a few moments trying to convince Cadence to get her clothes changed so they could head back to the playground…

But Cadence had to take a few last turns in the puddle before she was done for the day…

Back in the park, Julian taught Cadence how to climb the ropes, and they played until they were too tired to stand anymore…

Then, with a few quick hugs, Cadence and I said goodbye to our friends Cristen and Julian, and headed back home after a great day. Can’t wait to do it again! 🙂

A Little Christmas in July

It’s been a little hectic around here since returning from our New York vacation. I had hundreds of photos to go through from our trip, a guestbook to design and canvas to prep for my sister’s Kassie’s wedding, emails to answer, photo assignments to complete, laundry to catch up on, meals to cook, and an off-schedule, mildly ill 2-year-old to deal with.

Yeah, it’s been a little busy.

We did take a nice little break from the action on the 4th though. Steven and I took Cadence to see her first movie, Brave, in the theater, and she absolutely loved it. We shared popcorn, licorice, Reese’s Pieces, and Junior Mints and just enjoyed a little time together as a family. Cadence’s eyes were glued to the screen (except to grab another bite, or the minute or two she tried to discuss what was happening in the movie with the little boy sitting in the row ahead of us). She even stayed a few extra minutes to listen to the music and watch the credits roll. By the time we hit the lobby, she was already talking about going to another “woovie”, and has pretty much decided she wants to see Batman with her Daddy.

I’m thinking we’ll probably try Madagascar 3 and wait for Batman to come out on DVD.

Afterward, we headed home and put Cadence down for a quick nap. We invited my sister and her family over for steaks on the grill for dinner. It was so hot, we decided to turn on the sprinkler and let the kiddos run wild, and boy did they! They had a blast getting wet, pushing each other down the slide, and playing with a beach ball in the water. At first, Odin wanted to wear his little Fire Chief hat to keep his head from getting wet, but eventually he left it behind and just ran wild, and you know Cadence had to try it on for size…

Odin thought it was pretty funny to park himself on the slide and try to keep Cadence from going down it…

…right up until she gave him a push right off the top. Good thing we decided to move the slide onto the grass!

After that, the kids thought it was funny to push and watch each other tumble down in a heap…

After dinner, Lindy broke out the little firecracker snaps she bought at the store for the kids to try. They thought it was hilarious when I planted myself in the line of fire to get a few shots of them…

Since their bathing suits were still wet, we threw the kiddos in whatever clothes we happened to grab before they ran out the door on us, and it cracks me up that Cadence ended up in her long sleeve Santa pajama top while Odin is sporting an Awesome Crew sleeveless t-shirt. What a motley bunch!

And you know I couldn’t resist snapping a couple dozen photos when Cadence decided to model Odin’s hat. How cute is she!?

And once all the snaps were done, Odin thought it was fun to make some noise drumming on the table…

…while Cadence hunted for unsnapped snaps on the ground.

I hope everyone had as fun of a 4th as we did!

Fun in the Sun

Just a lazy Sunday trying to beat the heat in the yard. Steven caught the Mets/Yankees game on the Ipad while Cadence had a blast chasing a ball and running through the sprinkler. Then, a little lunch on the patio, and that’s what I’d call a perfect day. 🙂

And of course, I had to take about a million pictures of Miss Cadence looking like a 2-year-old Baywatch babe running through the yard in her new bathing suit. Unfortunately, I missed one seriously righteous wipeout when her shoe flew off mid-stride and she bellyflopped in the grass, limbs flying as she skidded to a stop. But, I still managed to get some really cute pictures.

Steven keeping an eye on the Mets during lunch
Really Momma? I can’t even enjoy a peanut butter sandwich without that camera in my face?
Cadence’s devious look
Mmmm…peanut butter
Gasp! The bunny? He’s here? Even all these weeks after Easter, Cadence is still obsessed.
Giving me the full explanation of how the Easter Bunny hides the eggs.

Mmmm…cookies!
Seriously lady, time to put away the camera before someone gets hurt!
Electra praying for Cadence to drop something.