On Thursday the kiddos and I went down to the lake to take our annual Packer picture. Okay, so that isn't exactly their favorite thing (or mine for the matter- do you know how hard it is to get four kids looking and smiling at you at the same time? UGH!) but the resulting pictures are always a favorite. I did a similar pose as last year and then also took a few new poses too. Now all I have to do is decide which one is the "winner" to be blown up and placed in the prominent living room frame over last year's photo.
As a reward for no major meltdowns (okay, I may have had a slight meltdown once or twice but the kids were pretty good) during our photo shoot we spent a good hour picking out the perfect stones to put in our stone jars. It was good fun.
Since we were so close we stopped at the kids' favorite park. There was lots of sliding, swinging, laughing, and goofing. But then it was time to really run the energy out of these kids and I took them to the hill. They started at the top and ran (some rolled) all the way down. Then it was back up to the top again. Down and up, and down and up they went until they were good and exhausted (and hungry).
Believe it or not, after lunch they all asked to lay down for a while. Eureka! Score one for momma! It was a good thing they all napped because that night we were off to the county fair! This event is something the kids talk about year round. It is one of their most highly anticipated events, and it really lived up to it this year.
Of course, the first pic is the kids with the tractors. It is a must to stop and climb on and "drive" all the tractors the minute we get to the fair. Then we see the animals, milk a fake cow, and on to the RIDES. Rides are definitely a favorite. I was so blown away this year as my boys were all old enough to ride the big rides (by themselves). Luckily, Gracie still needed me for some of the bigger rides, and she wanted to try them all. The rollar coasters, the spinners, the ones that take you way up in the air. She loved them all. I love my dare devil kids.
It was a very late night after a very busy day. Everyone went to bed tired and happy.
Friday afternoon we left for a nice extended weekend up north. The kids fished and swam and played. They were in heaven. Thankfully, they didn't even notice how quiet and melancholy their mama was. It is sad when summer comes to an end. I am still not ready for school to begin and start yet another new phase of our lives. All four kids in school. How did we get here? Hell, I'm already being asked when I'll be going back to work.
After dinner on Saturday night everyone went out fishing while I stayed and cleaned up. When I was through with the dishes I went outside, chopped up some wood and started a fire. It was nice having that time to myself. The sun was setting to a nice orangey glow that matched the flames of the fire perfectly. In the dark and quiet I had myself a good old boo-hoo. I allowed myself to think about how quickly these years are going by and how I only have these kids for a short while. The tears came and I didn't hold them back.
By the time the boat returned I was all dried up. No more tears to shed. Hopefully I got it all out of my system so that on Tuesday morning I can be all excitement and joy and anticipation right along with the kids as they all start a new year in school.