Monday, August 20, 2012

Fun Times

We were so excited when the Cole's told us they would be able to spend some time with us this summer. They're headed from Texas up to Maine and got to spend almost a week with us. Between us 8 kids from 3 to 11. We played lots of legos, ate lots of food, played some games, did some hiking. Lots of energy, lots of fun! Janelle is much better about taking pics than I am which you can see here.

Did everything go perfect? of course not- with 11 imperfect people in one house there was bound to be some disagreements but it was super to be together. Most mornings we listened to the Bible and did a devotion together- a great way to start the day. The days that we planned in some resting time definitely were better days. We all need some time to rest, recharge, and get re-excited about seeing each other. We realized how hard it is to stay full of grace when we tried to have all fun and no down time. But even those hard times can be good when you humble yourself to make things right.

We started off the week slowly- well if you can call me leaving Janelle with 7 kids to feed the first morning she got here slow :) James went to work and T and I went to my doctor appointment. I thought he'd enjoy time with mommy and getting to hear baby's heartbeat. After my appointment, the ten of us did go to one of my favorite spots in Baltimore- Sherwood Gardens- so pretty and I love that it's just a short walk away.

Wednesday we went hiking at Patapsco Valley State Park- we hiked from the nature center across the suspension bridge to the falls. We definitely have 8 nature loving kids- even if they ran some of the hike, they were very excited about being out in God's creation! We ended the morning with a little playing at the tire park and a quick picnic.  We had some worn out boys!

 Wednesday night we were blessed to be able to go back to the Aquarium. We did the summer reading program at the library and they picked C's name for 4 tickets. The librarian knew that wasn't enough for our family so she found 4 more tickets for us. KG and T enjoyed a night home with Daddy while Janelle and I took the 6 big kids to the aquarium. Much fun! Here's C showing his candy cane smile!

Thursday morning we went to Annapolis.  It was pretty and the visitor's center movie reminded me lots of my time at West Point. But it was no West Point :) We do want to make a trip back there some day and see more of the museum on the USNA.

You can see some of the kids wearing lots of West Point shirts. We got lots of comments as we walked around their campus. The kids got a kick out of the gate guard who said we couldn't come in and the people who told us to leave bc of the shirts.
It was neat to see a midshipman room.

We made a quick trip to Sandy Point- we were too tired for Park Quest but enjoyed some crabbing. No keepers but it's fun to pull them up!
Friday morning we went to Oregon Ridge for more hiking. The kids really loved the stream and finding all sorts of nature as we walked. 1-2-3 on me was a lot of fun too.

The new nature playground was fun after the picnic.
What a cool bear! and cute almost 5 year old boy too!
We ended our week with a trip to Fort McHenry and were so excited that the reenactors were there. We went many times last year but always learn something new. This time we went on a park ranger lead walk and learned that I should not call the War of 1812- the second Revolutionary War. We got to see reenactors fire the cannon and practice sword drill- plus it's just super pretty! 

We had early birthday celebrations for P and T- hotdogs, brownies, and ice cream- yum!

A super week of fun with friends. It was really fun to see all the kids play together- whether the whole gang racing around or little pair of kids! And fun to see Janelle too!

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