We’ve had a wonderful summer so far. In April we went to Washington, DC for a wedding and to visit some good friends from Nashville who moved out to the Baltimore area. At the time they were living in an old farmhouse on several acres of land and the boys had the best time romping around outside for hours on end. They ended up moving out of their farmhouse shortly after we visited, so it was a special time and a wonderful memory for us.
We were there over Charlie’s birthday again, so we were able to take him to an Oriole’s game to celebrate. He was thrilled! He has loved the Orioles since his birthday last year when we went to a game with his buddy Finn for his birthday. It was so special to be able to take him again.
Leo has grown up so much. He and Charlie have become best friends, but they fight like normal brothers do. They both love to play baseball, though I wonder if Leo would have loved it if he didn’t have a big brother who wanted to play it all day long. Leo was an intense baby and he hasn’t changed much. He has been an early talker and he’s very smart. I’m reading a book about raising “spirited” children, and in the book it says to avoid negative labels. In that case, he can best be described as expressive, focused, committed to goals, passionate, one who holds high standards and extremely curious 😉 Those photos are from March, I think. He has grown up even more since then! His hair has gotten so much lighter, as you’ll see in the following pictures.
My sister-in-law got married in May, so we had family in town for the wedding. The boys had a blast with their cousins, and I’m thrilled to report that there was no fighting this trip! Huge change for the better since our last visit
Chris is playing in a men’s baseball league this year, and he plays for the Orioles! Charlie loves that, and he and Leo are Chris’ biggest fans. Charlie’s playing coach-pitch baseball this year too and loving it. Chris is his coach and he has made a few little friends on his team. He plays for the Brewers, so now he’s a Brewers fan too.
June was filled with visits with family and friends, grilling out, reading on the porch, taking walks, going to the beach and library, our town’s ice cream social, Chris’ grandparents’ 60th wedding anniversary party/family reunion, working on our garden and of course, playing baseball!
The Fourth of July was our favorite yet. We went to the parade in our town and from there walked to the lake for a fun festival complete with fair games, beer tents, live music and lots of food. There were hundreds of front-yard parties, the whole town was so festive and alive. Chris smoked some pork in the smoker I got him for Father’s Day and we ate outside with friends and then went to the fireworks. I was afraid Leo would hate the fireworks because he gets overwhelmed pretty easily, but he actually fell asleep in my lap. We didn’t have to get in the car once the whole day. I love our town because we can walk everywhere!
Now that the weather is nice and hot we’ve been spending lots of time at the beach. I bring a couple buckets and the kids play for hours while I read in a beach chair and drink something delicious. It’s a pretty great setup at this point, since the kids don’t really venture into the water yet. Speaking of books, I’m 2/3 done with Kristin Lavransdatter and I can’t put it down. I don’t want to say this too prematurely, but it could be my favorite book of all time. It’s one that every catholic should read.
I’ve been thinking a lot about the mental load of running a home and caring for children. I find myself overwhelmed so much of the time. At this point in time, I’m pretty maxed out at caring for the kids, keeping the house reasonably clean and feeding everyone. Of course, there are always necessary outside commitments, but I’m doing my best to say no to things so that we have mostly free days.
I got a kiddie pool for $7 at Aldi and when we don’t go to the beach, the kids play in here. Even little Leo has come to enjoy it, though at first he wasn’t so sure.
I almost forgot! I’m starting to get into videography a little bit. I’m a total amateur, and I don’t know that I’ll ever heavily invest time or money to get really into it, but I’m having fun with it anyway and I made this video of our Memorial day. It’s not perfect, but I love it anyway