Happy Friday, Y’all. Summer is finally in full swing around here after all the rain and cold. It’s still fairly cool, and even when it gets into the 80’s and everyone complains about the heat, Ryan still laughs at them.

I survived Fort Bragg in the summer, for years! Washington holds no terrors for me.

Saturdays are the day that Mommy and Daddy are both off, but that doesn’t mean it’s all partying and frolicking and whimsical nonesuch. It is a serious work day, with all manner of noble tasks to be undertaken.

Serious!

For instance, we harvested some of our compost.

And placed it around our kiwis to slow down the desiccation of the soil around it.

Mommy was also working very hard to make a pink champagne cake for the Moergeli picnic which was on Sunday. It took all day, and she only finished it right before bedtime prayers, but isn’t it pretty?!

But she still had time to have a toenail party (that’s what it’s called, right) with the girls.

Our Japanese plum is starting to come into season!

It is loaded with fruit, compared to last year when we only got about three tiny little plums off it. It’s hard to tell when they are ripe, because they don’t turn purple, they just go from yellow to a slightly more translucent shade of yellow. And we have been having trouble keeping the small ones away, since they ate three of the unripe plums off the lower branches a few nights ago. Silly childs! Yeah, they’ll pucker up your mouth, but it’s probably good for the intestinal health so whatever.

Also, a note about that picture, Kathleen is carrying an empty champagne bottle not because that’s how we party after the girls go to sleep, but because neither of us like champagne, so we dumped what was left from the cake in the compost. Judging by the whooping and hollering and carrying on, the worms seem to have enjoyed it.

Sunday was the Moergeli picnic. We drove up to Enumclaw to get our Moergel on for a few hours. Kathleen has been discovering handwritten recipes tucked in the pages of her 1908 cookbook, and brought it up in the hopes that some of the older folks might be able to identify the handwriting and maybe decipher the ingredients, since some of the abbreviations are unfamiliar.

The consensus was that most of it belonged to Great-Grandma Gerald, and at least one of the abbreviations probably stands for “sweet” milk, by which the Aunts believe she meant condensed milk.

Dude knows how to throw a party for the Ellie! Just bring fresh picked berries. Which reminds me. Dude’s blueberries are coming on, which means we’ll need to find a day to get up and pick them in the next couple weeks.

Kathleen found Evie some new workbooks with a dry erase pen so that she can use them over and over again. She has a math workbook, a penmanship (cursive) workbook, and a phonics workbook.

She loves the Math one, kind of enjoys the cursive one, and has no interest in the phonics at all.

In that respect she is her mother’s daughter.

Let’s see, what else…

Oh, Evie and Ellie are both convinced that the food on Mommy’s plate is definitely more delicious than the food on their own plates, even when it is patently clear that it is the same kind of food.

Little Vultures.

Ellie likes to try on Daddy’s sandals:

And Ryan finally got the fence fixed, with a gate and everything!

If you are wondering why the diagonal bracing is not a perfect “X” it’s because the 2×4 was two inches too short, and Ryan was not willing to run to the store and buy another one. It works and doesn’t looke terrible. The only problem is that the new post that Ryan set is plumb, or pretty darn close thereto, but the old post that the hinges are set on is NOT! Not even close. You can see how this makes the whole fence sag into the neighbor’s yard, and makes the bottom of the gate not flush with the pole.

It hurts Ryan’s soul, but not enough to dig out the old post, chip away the cement and reset it. It’s going to stay as it is.

And that’s all for this week, folks. We hope you have a great weekend, don’t forget to pray everyday for us and for your own families.

God Bless!

Last week has been short, but Oh So Sweet! It began on Friday with Mommy’s birthday!

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Feliz Cumpleanos!!

Evie is a little confused about birthdays. She understands that people have them and they are a lot of fun, but she doesn’t understand why she can’t have her birthday right now. Or whenever she wants.

 

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“But why do I have to wait until after Jesus’ Birthday and Daddy’s Birthday? I want my birthday today.”

Poor Evie. Life is hard when you are only two.

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But at least she has a baby sister to decorate.

Then Evie woke up at 2 AM the next day with the croup. That was a fun morning for no one involved. We did our best to keep her comfortable until 0800 when the urgent care opened, and then Daddy took her in to see the doctor. It took a few hours, but eventually we got her a much needed shot of steroids, and then she felt much better.

 

She immediately went out and started pumping iron… No just kidding. Not that kind of steroid.

She felt better but she hasn’t been herself most of the week. There was lots of tired.

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This was most of the weekend.

 

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And a good part of the week.

Ellie turned one month old!

 

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She has also begun training kung fu under the tutelage of Master Elephant.

She met her cousin John Paul for the first time. He is one month old too!

 

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Although the camera did not catch him at a very flattering angle. He really is quite a handsome little guy.

Papa came over to help Daddy install the new microwave. It went pretty smoothly except that the power cord for the new one is in a different place than the old one, so we had to drill a new hole for it. Neither of us had a saw bit for the drill, though. Then Ryan remembered that there was an old auger and a bunch of auger bits in Grandpa Joes old tool chest in the garage.

 

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I haven’t used one of these things since I was a kid!

They may be old, but that doesn’t mean they don’t work! Love it!

That’s all for this week. Evie is feeling much better, Ellie is still growing, Mommy got to sleep in once (YAYY!!!!!) and we are just trucking along like it’s our job. Last Family Friday of Advent so if we don’t see you, Merry Christmas, and God Bless!

 

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Silent night, Holy Night, etc. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sorry for the late posting. It’s still Friday, so it isn’t really late, but it has been a busy week. Midterms and all.

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Evie got some crocheted bunnies from Auntie Danica.

Mid-terms were rough. Fortunately they are over. In only five more weeks Ryan will be done with didactic year, and ready to begin clinical years.

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Evie and Daddy reading “Otter in Space” in a blanket tent.

We managed to get some yard work done too. Evie helped dig out a pit to put Mommy’s clothesline back in.

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And she helped fill the hole in when we were done.

 

 

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Evie is working hard!

And it turned out beautifully! Evie can climb while Mommy hangs up her laundry.

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We also had a delicious meal at Uncle Adam and Aunt Maryanne’s house of stuffed lamb chops, kale, green beans, macaroni and herbed dinner rolls, with the blueberry and feta salad that Kathleen made.

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Aunt Maryanne’s parents were there too. And, of course, Baby Edmund.

 

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A one man band at the farmer’s market.

Evie and Daddy went to Barnes and Noble together to get a book for Auntie Danica’s baby shower.

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“Daddy! It’s a Dory book!”

Of course she found some other books that she just had to have. We ended up buying a couple more books than we had planned.

That’s just what happens when you go into Barnes and Noble. She is her daddy’s child!

That’s all for tonight. Have a good weekend, folks. God Bless!

 

 

 

 

 

Evie has decided that she is a big girl now. As such, she feels she should no longer have to take naps.

 

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Yes, I have improved the décor. And I restyled my look. What do you think of it?

She would rather have tea and study the Thai alphabet.

 

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She knows “Gor Gai.” That’s about it. Oddly enough, that’s about all Daddy knows too.

Not much going on these days. Daddy is doing school, Mommy is scanning people for vascular abnormalities. Late nights, early mornings. Or in Mommy’s case this week, early nights and late mornings (she’s been working nights).

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But Daddy decided to play hooky today, so he and Evie got outside to work on the lawn a little bit.

 

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Evie couldn’t reach to dump the mulch in the bin, but she was thrilled to have an Evie sized shovel.

 

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All of Daddy’s pictures are over-exposed.

 

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Evie is going to plant a raspberry! To eat!

Then in the afternoon, after Evie’s nap, Mommy and Daddy and Evie all went to the “Outside park” (as opposed to the “Wiggle park,” which is inside).

 

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Playing telephone with Daddy. Those little phones actually do transmit sound like the old cans-and-string telephones we used to make as kids.

Evie has discovered that when she climbs up into the spider web, she doesn’t have to stop when she gets to the center.

 

 

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Evie climb!

She can keep going!

 

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Evie come down?!

She is good at climbing up. Back down is not quite there yet.

Uncle Matthew says that going back down comes later, and gravity helps. Evie just likes to let go, so Daddy will catch her.

And now it is time for Daddy to get back to school. Mommy is already back at work.

Good night, and have a good weekend, y’all.

God Bless!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last Saturday our friends Ben and Christine had a birthday party for there son Nolan, who is also Ryan’s godson.

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Happy Birthday Big Guy!

This little rascal showed up too!

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It’s no wonder he’s so big! He is always eating.

The zoo-keeper brought a turtle for the kids to play with.

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Evie wanted to touch the turtle. Really bad.

 

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I need a turtle!

After the party we went to go visit the fishies, and then ride the merry-go-round.

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Evie wants to go riding off to win the Darby like Mary Poppins.

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Faster, Daddy, Faster!

On Sunday we had a big Pizza Party!

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Kathleen taught herself how to make gnocchi dough for her “Bangers and Mash” pizza.

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The day turned out beautiful!

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Teaching Evie the basics of pressing out the dough: “Don’t use the fingernails.”

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The “Chicken/Veggie stir-fry” is always a favorite.

 

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Evie was super excited to have a whole bunch of other kids over to play.

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Our first outdoor pizza party of the year was a great success!

Since Daddy had the week off from school, he was able to get a few odd jobs done around the house.

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And of course, Evie is always ready to help.

That’s all folks! hope you have a good weekend. God Bless!

 

 

This has been a pretty cool week, because for once we feel like we actually finished some projects and made some real time for family.

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Yeah! Family Time!

 

Last Friday Evie went to stay with Grandma and Papa, while Mommy drove up to Seattle to meet Daddy after work/school, and they had a date!

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Kathleen is talking about something that isn’t Evie or what-we-have-to-do-next. We are probably talking about medicine. #NERDS!

Since we were on a date, we aren’t “Mommy” and “Daddy,” we are “Ryan” and “Kathleen.” Weird, right?

family-friday-77-12After dinner we saw “Man of La Mancha” at the 5th Ave Theater. It was a “modern retelling” of the play, not too badly done. The leading man had a bit of a lisp, and, unfortunately was not Peter O’Toole, and the dialog was a bit rushed, possibly due to production constraints (it was a two hour show with no intermission). Other than that, however, it was very good. The lady who played Dulcinea did a spectacular job.

And on Saturday morning we picked Evie up and we were all together again.

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Apparently Evie discovered the song “Mr. Bojangles” and made Grandma play it (and dance to it) 18 times in one morning.

family-friday-77-1Uncle Adam came over on Sunday to help Daddy put the roof on the patio shelter. Finally, six weeks into a 12 hour project, it is finished and ready for parties!

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Kraeger ladies, party of two!

And while Ryan and Adam were working hard and doing manly things, Kathleen wrangled the children.

And made the world’s most delicious nachos supreme, with bacon, beef and refried beans. And did I mention Bacon?!

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Bacon nachos!

Monday after work/school, Daddy and Mommy took Evie trick-or-treating. We visited Grandma and Papa, Grandma Dolly, Aunt Dude, and Great-Grandma.

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Evie is Little Red Riding Hood, Mommy is Granny, and Daddy is the woodsman.

Evie didn’t like the cape at first, but eventually she realized it made the Grandmas happy, so she tolerated it.

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She’s cute and she knows it, heaven help us.

And she’s strong. She can carry two full water bottles. At once!

 

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But they are SO heavy!!!

And that’s all for this week. Ryan has to get back to school, nowish.

Have a good weekend! God Bless.

 

 

76 trombones led the big parade…

Kathleen is trying to put a song in your head this morning. Ryan feels sorry for you, but not sorry enough not to type the lyrics.

It seems like just the other day we were typing Family Friday 75, and here it is a whole week later. I think we must have blinked, or something, because I don’t remember it.

Saturday was a very busy day for us. Work on the pergola continued out behind the house and Evie was in the thick of it.

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A little more to your left, Daddy.

It’s a slow job. Really slow. Mostly because we only work on it an hour or two at a time, every other week. And then of course, the beautiful Pacific Northwest October weather.

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Which doesn’t usually look like this. These pictures are from Saturday, and it has been raining ever since.

We even got the deck swept off!

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Evie discovered the gymnastic rings that Daddy has hanging up in the garage. They have rapidly become her new favorite toy. She is ninja training with Daddy!

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She makes this L-sit hang look easy.

family-friday-76-13It probably is, when you weigh less than 30 pounds soaking wet.

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Mommy is teaching Evie how to make tapioca pudding, which is a valuable life skill if you plan on being a human being. Who doesn’t need a little tapioca pudding now and then?

And the only other major family adventure this week occurred just a couple of hours ago, when we carved Evie’s first pumpkin.

 

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She calls them “pink-pum.”

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Not too sure about the sliminess at first, but she never stays squeamish for long.

She is practicing to be a surgeon.

family-friday-76-8See? nothing to it! It’s only brain surgery.

She was pretty thrilled when Mommy stuck a candle in it and it lit up.

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Hope you all have a great weekend. Keep us in your prayers.

God Bless, from the Kraegers.

 

Short blog this week. Mommy and Daddy are beat, and Evie is too little to blog. Go figure.

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Evie likes going to visit Jesus. It is one of her favorite things to do. She especially likes the 8 A.M. Mass on Sunday, because then she gets to hang out with her buddy Joshua afterwards.

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Daddy has footlers!

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Uncle Adam came over on Sunday to help move the pergola we are building in the back yard (no, it is not finished yet. Not even close.) We needed him to help us move it a total of 3 feet. It took about five minutes to set up, move it, and put everything away, but it was a good excuse for a two hour visit, complete with tea and chatting and Edmund.

family-friday-75-7Edmund is a hoss. And he can move! He crawls like a young gorilla, very fast and with a lot of inertia.

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We visited them on Wednesday night for steak and salad and beer and salt potatoes.

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What you got there, cos?

Maryanne makes some mean salt potatoes, almost as good as the ones Ryan and Adam grew up with. (Salt potatoes are a New York thing, dating back to the early 1800’s when Irish immigrants working the salt marshes in Syracuse NY used to bring their potatoes for lunch. When the lunch bell rang they would toss the raw potatoes into the boiling vat of brine, fish them out again, and voila!)

 

Nowadays we add butter, but other than that the recipe hasn’t changed. You take some potatoes, preferably new from the garden, and boil them with a whole lot of salt. Hence the name.

 

Edmund showed Evie one of his favorite toys: the spring loaded door stop.

It doesn’t get much better than that!

 

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Quite a haul for less than $100

Mommy has been working very hard sorting Evie’s old clothes and tagging and pricing the ones that she doesn’t need or didn’t use much to sell at a baby item swap meet nearby, called “Just Between Friends.” She spent a few evenings and part of a morning working there, selling some of our extras and came home with a whole set of the next sizes up…

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And a nice, shiny metal tricycle and a little red wagon. The tricycle is too big for Evie to reach the pedals, but she can sure ring the bell!

 

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Cheese!

Mommy is Evie’s favorite Mommy ever!

And that’s all. We need to hit the hay and be up and at ’em dark and early tomorrow. Best of luck to all.

God Bless!

 

 

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One of Evie’s favorite words is “backpack.” She loves to rifle through both Mama’s and Dada’s backpacks when we get home, and she is very proud that she can point out which is which. She tried carrying Mommy’s backpack for a little bit, but it is too big for her.

That’s okay. Christmas is just around the corner.

Last Saturday we got together with Mass Consumption to cook a meal at our local homeless shelter again. We had quite a good turn out, and cooked some very tasty food!

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She’s the woman with the plan! You want someone who can get things organized and feed 200+ people for less than $250 dollars and three hours of work? Kathleen is your gal.

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And her faithful side-kick Ryan.

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Kathleen and Jen mixing that chicken-rice-and-veggie casserole.

family-friday-74-8With berry cobbler for desert.

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She must really trust her brother-in-law, because she put him on butter detail. Butter is very important to her.

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Of course every boss needs some henchmen, which are not quite the same as minions. Henchmen are a lot more useful than minions, with lots of independent thought, but also a lot more unpredictable and harder to control.

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Not sure whether Andy looks artsy or just creepy. He’s Andy.

Told you the food was delicious, LOL!

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I just realized, no pictures of Celyn in this post, because she took them all. Sorry, Celyn.

We are trying to build a wooden pre-fab pergola on the new cement pad out back. However, the weather and the schedule have been refusing to cooperate, so we had to move all the pieces into the garage and stain them as our date night on Sunday.

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Freakin’ romantical as heck, Yo!

Still haven’t gotten that thing put together yet, and won’t get it together this weekend either, because it is busy typhooning and stuff outside.

Evie got to help daddy work on it late after supper one night this week.

family-friday-74-20She had trouble with being told that she couldn’t climb the ladder unless Daddy was climbing it with her. After all, she climbs the ladders at the playground all the time. They, however, are not built on concrete.

family-friday-74-21And she had trouble lining up the socket wrench.

But she still had tons of fun, and it wore her our and made her a tired baby girl, which is always a good thing for Mommy and Daddy.

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Playing at the park is also a great way to become a tired baby girl, although I think it actually just energizes her, as often as not, and she turns into the energizer baby.

family-friday-74-17Modelling the new purse from Aunt Mary, with her fashionably draped snuggle-blankey toga.

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Which also doubles as a dancing dress.

She is becoming girlier and girlier every day, which is a good thing, as long as she keeps up with her ninja training. Because priorities.

She just grows too darn fast! She is even borrowing one of the neighbor kids’ little scooter bikes.

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An occupational hazard of being a parent, I suppose. Kids growing up that is. Could be worse though. They might not grow up.

As much as parents complain about how fast their kids grow up, I think they hate it even worse when their kids refuse to grow up, which Evie is definitely not doing.

So that’s good.

Anyway, that’s all for this week. Hope y’all have a good weekend. God bless, and pray for Peace in the World every day!

 

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How are y’all folks doing this morning?

Last weekend we were pretty busy as usual. We had umpteen million errands to run, and the folks coming to do concrete in the back and a wedding to go to. All on Saturday.

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Evie doesn’t have much use for weddings, but she loves wedding receptions. She ran around non-stop for about three hours straight and was too excited to eat. Then, of course, she crashed on the way home and slept until 7:00 the next morning, at which time she woke up STARVING!

Ah, silly Baby Girl.

family-friday-72The concrete party pad is looking good. The stamped concrete turned out well, and it has its own cute little fire pit (Ryan says it is “cute and little” because in his mind a bonfire should be visible from space. You can barely fit a campfire in this thing, but at least we won’t have to worry about the neighbors calling the fire department every time we roast marshmallows.

family-friday-72-11Evie approves of her new dance floor.

Mommy had to work on Sunday, so Evie stayed home with Daddy. They decided to finish off the last of one of Aunt Dude’s watermelons.

family-friday-72-1 This wild child LOVES watermelon.

Of course immediately after the watermelon it was bath time, but she likes bath time too, so that was okay.

Start learning responsibility early.

family-friday-72-2Wake up happy in Mommy’s spot!

Mommy came home early from work on Wednesday, so she and Evie got to cook together. Evie decided her job was to sample things for quality control purposes.

family-friday-72-3She says it is very yummy.family-friday-72-4When Mommy took it away she wanted more. She is definitely her mother’s daughter.

family-friday-72-10Hi Daddy! We’re cooking!

That’s all for this week, folks. Got to run! Just remember to take time to tightrope the curb when you can.

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God Bless!