Thursday, August 29, 2013

Oh Happy Day!

It's funny...Mark is the same age I was when I got married, and yet I still look at him and see my kid brother.  He and Lindsey have been together for a couple of years now, so we knew that marriage was inevitable, and yet I can't believe that he's married.  But I am so glad he is, that he made Lindsey an official member of the family.  I had been acquainted with Lindsey for a long time.  I was good friends with her cousins.  I always liked Lindsey and thought she was so sweet, but never in a million years did I think that she would end up my sister-in-law!

Mark and Lindsey picked August 3rd, and it was a gorgeous day.  They were married in Gresham, on Lindsey's family's property.

We arrived about an hour before the ceremony, and contrary to what I thought I might find, Mark appeared to be as calm as could be.  (I was a nervous wreck, so I thought Mark would be the same.)  He even pulled out a little Blue Steel.

We had time to take pictures, and the kids got to play for a while.

They couldn't get enough of this swing.

Henry patiently waited for his turn too.

I tried to get the cousins all together, but this was the best I could do.

Lindsey and her sisters did most of the work, and everything turned out beautifully.

 Her brothers made the benches (with lots of help from Erin and Mark) and the canopy.

I'm so glad my aunts could be there - Julie, Lorraine, and Lynne.

The look on my brother's face is priceless.

And Lindsey was a stunning bride.

Her dad preformed the ceremony.

This is one of my favorites.

And then it was all done, and the kids could run and play on that amazing property.

Then, of course, it was time for pictures.  The girls were in heaven following the bride around.

Thanks to my sister for taking such beautiful pictures of the kids.

After pictures we had a tasty dinner in the beautiful tent.

After dinner and cake was dancing!  

Henry dumped water down his shirt, so Grandpa snuggled him in a blanket to keep him warm.  Henry sure loves his "Buh-pa".

At one point, one of Lindsey's nephews asked Claire to dance.  It was the sweetest thing.  She was all shy and embarrassed about it after, but you could tell she was thrilled.

Claire wasn't the only one wearing her dancing shoes.  Henry got his fair share of action on the dance floor as well.

For a few brief moments, Claire and Henry even danced together.

It was a beautiful night.  We are so happy to have Lindsey as a part of our family, and I am especially glad to see Mark so happy.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Bay Beach

Bay Beach is one of those places that is a dream for parents.  It's fun, it's cheap (no admission, and each ride is anywhere from 2-4 tickets), and there are some new rides!  We went a few times every summer when I was a kid, and though the tickets are a little more expensive now (25¢ a ticket instead of 10¢) we couldn't pass up some inexpensive fun with all these energetic cousins together.  

Though there was some initial disappointment that none of the kids were tall enough for the bumper cars, it didn't last long.  These two were ready to go!

First up:  the swings.  Erin was an awesome auntie and took all the bigger kids on this one.

Meanwhile, we took Henry and Sarah on the bug ride.  Maybe not quite as exciting, but I still think they had a good time.  This was the Henry Man's first ride.  

Then we decided to get in line to ride the train.  It was quite the long line.  We waited...

and waited...

and waited some more.

Mark began dishing out his little brother dominance routine.

But Erin dished it right back.

They really do love each other.  I'm pretty sure.

Finally we made it on to the train.

I don't think Henry was really sure about what was going to happen, but really liked the "choo choo". 

After that, we headed over to the newest ride at Bay Beach.  The only kid who was tall enough to ride was Mikey, so he, Grandma, Grandpa, and Beth took off for a little bit, while Erin and I hung out with the littles.  The girls were only too happy to have some ice cream of the Hello Kitty variety.

And the newest ride:  The Zippin' Pippin!  Elvis rode this only about a week before he died.  True story.

It's a good old-fashioned wooden roller coaster.  Nothing fancy, but fun.

After the coaster and some fun races down the giant slide, I treated the kids to a pony ride.  This was Claire's first pony ride, and I'm pretty sure she loved it.

We did a few more kiddie rides, and then called it a day.

I think it's pretty safe to say a good time was had by all.

Harper Turns 3!

We sure love this little girl, and we were excited to wish her a happy birthday.  But, of course, this little sassafrass decided to have so...