{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real} – Whirlwind August Edition (or, Where I’ve Been the Last Month)

This year, we meandered through June and July, savoring a slow and relaxing pace, enjoying the good things that summer has to offer: fresh produce, dips in the pool, friends and family and sunshine.

And then, August hit. And August has been a whirlwind of a month.

On August 4th, we hopped on a plane (hopped, I say, as though it was simple and easy, as though travel is anything but strenuous when you have a three-year-old and a one-year-old in tow) and flew halfway across the country to the lake-strewn flatlands of Minnesota for a family reunion. We followed that up with a long day spent at the county fair, with hosting various friends and family for dinner and for overnight visits, with meetings and work and the stuff of everyday life, and then we packed our bags again for a trek north to chase the sun (or, rather, to chase its temporary demise).

A quick tally of the numbers, for the curious. In the past twenty days, we have:

slept 8 nights in beds other than our own,

spent 30 hours in cars and 9 hours on planes en route to various destinations,

not to mention too many hours in airports.

We hosted three adults and two kids overnight (which, alas, I did not document),

fed twenty-six adults and seven kids dinner (not all at once – and without photographic evidence!),

visited with twenty-four family members,

(Photo credit to my amazing cousin)

 

(Photo credit to my dad and his drone)

and two of Jonathan’s best friends from college (and their families),

 

explored one county fair,

played in one lake,

(Photo credit to my amazing cousin)

enjoyed one splash pad,

said a temporary goodbye to one close friend (ack, no picture!),

celebrated one sweet girl’s first birthday,

(Both photos taken, again, by my cousin)

and watched one total eclipse.

Every single one of these activities was worthwhile. I’m grateful for every moment spent with friends and family, for the opportunity to open our home and to travel and to experience the wonders of relationship and the wonders of nature, and given the chance, I’d do it all again (well, minus the long travel days. If anyone has a secret as to how experience all that we did in the past twenty days without hearing, “We there yet, Mama?” or “I ready get out,” or Abby’s frustrated and tired yells, I’m all ears.)

But whew. I’m tired.

I’ve had a number of thoughts percolating, thoughts regarding family and connection, regarding prayer, regarding the awe-inspiring beauty of this incredible world we inhabit. I’ve mulled over recent events, over showing love and teaching empathy and healing divides. Jonathan and I spent the long hours in the car (those that weren’t punctuated by the need to help tired kiddos) listening to sermons, talking about politics, discussing the state of our world. And, of course, there’s my yearly blackberry post to write. But I’ve yet to have the energy to get them down into coherent words. Perhaps that energy will come in the next few weeks. Perhaps it won’t.

But until then (and with that overly long and wordy introduction), here’s a bit of {pretty, happy, funny, real} – whirlwind August edition. A day late, because that’s the kind of month it’s been.

~Capturing the context of contentment in everyday life, as inspired by the women at Like Mother, Like Daughter~

{Pretty}

A lovely sunset over a Minnesotan lake, and a beautiful girl, both courtesy of my cousin.

{Happy}

One girl thrilled to be home, rocking in my grandmother’s chair,and another experiencing a s’more for the very first time.

(Also, for more happy – see every picture in this post to this point).

{Funny}

After several months away to let the pasture grow, the llamas are back! The unloading process, which included – I kid you not – multiple trips with llamas piled in the back of a seat-less fifteen-passenger van, provided great entertainment for my girls and allowed me to complete a few quick chores around the house.Also, check out that smoothie mustache!

{Real}

Eventually, during the eclipse, a certain somebody lost her patience with staring at the sky. This is a three-year-old looking unimpressed.

Traveling with little ones is no vacation. You do what you have to do to keep them entertained. Sometimes, what you have to do is let the beloved BaaBaa drive the car for a while.

Whew. That’s what our last few weeks have been. I hope to return to a more regular posting schedule soon, but in the meantime: what about you? What has your August held? Have you captured any contentment lately?

Family and Parenting, This Thing Called Life

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2 Responses to {Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real} – Whirlwind August Edition (or, Where I’ve Been the Last Month)

  1. Jamie says:

    We’re capturing it now on a trip abroad. Our August has also been a whirlwind with two long plane trips and lots of other activities. Love all your photos!