August 6, 2014

Random Summer Days

There are many photos to share from our Canada trip up north - and I will - but summer is flying (it's short lived in our part of the world) and days are full.  I've been busy with the kids, with beautiful weather, with juggling everything I want to do and needs to be done all at once. 
However, my mind is overflowing with things that wish to work their way out into words - so I expect to hit my rhythm here again shortly. 
For now, some happenings from our summer days:

Yesterday I had a revolving mix of thirteen kids at our house, seven to start the day, nine still going strong until close to midnight, and a few others between.   Ages 1-18.  
Just a random summer Tuesday.

One evening last week I kayaked, at a non-leisurely pace, roughly 8 miles or so around a nearby lake.  My sisters are preparing for a triathlon, one stage of which is canoeing or kayaking around the lake.  They were there to test out a double kayak & see how the timing went.  I was just along because I love being on the water with a paddle, it's one of my favorite things.  It was a gorgeous evening, and good and tiring trying to keep up with the two of them.  (The two person vessel was much faster than mine!  I do not have a Ferrari model kayak.) 
I'm really not a Point A to Point B person.  This fact has been surfacing daily.  
I love to wander & enjoy, and really experience my journey.
Once in a while it hits me out of nowhere & brings me to tears:  I miss our dog. 
I was singing lots of Me and My Doggie McGee for a week.  
I'm finally getting back into a walking rhythm again without him, which feels good.
The setting sun while on my walks has been beautiful.

We've had a little less swimming and a lot more bicycle activity around here as of late. 
Johnathan & Lilly are suddenly riding mine & Mitch's full size bikes. 
One evening on my walk, I found a huge end to end rainbow at the end of our road.  The entire wild wetland / lake was covered by this great arc.  My phone battery was languishing & wouldn't take a panorama.
Later in the week we broke out the paints & canvases.  Lilly (and I helped a little) painted this scene, inspired by the rainbow I had seen.  It will hang in her room.  

Our garden seems stunted this year.  But strawberry season was good & we're eating a few fresh picked peas, beans & carrots. 
We're loving our chickens & summer flowers.
Wild raspberries abound all around us right now. 

My friend, Alaina, made us an appointment for pedicures together last week.  A splurge, but such a treat!   I was introduced to a new spa / salon in town that was so much fun, located in a historic old school building in town.  It's nice to indulge in something special once in a while.  I feel that I'm at a stage in my life where I can do so feeling less guilt, yet as much appreciation as ever.

I just started reading The Fault in Our Stars.  I wish I had a bonus hour each day to read.
Beau & I read The Wind in the Willows together over the past couple of days.  I enjoyed his snuggles and we giggled a lot.  Giggles are great.
Home projects are numerous right now.  I'm moving into our home office, converting multiple closets, & working on some more exterior staining.   My list goes on & on.
I've been greatly limiting my thrift & treasure hunting.. but have acquired a few project items & have some old ones waiting in line as well. 

"I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read, and all the friends I want to see."  -John Burroughs

I'm feeling that quote lately.
Peace, Love, & A Very Happy August,

*All of these photos were taken with my phone.. so handy on the go.  But I still love my camera-camera best of all.   :)


  1. Sounds like you are having a wonderful summer! Those raspberries look yummy. Yes, summer seems to be fleeting by way too quickly. Enjoy those precious kids. Take it from me, they grow up way too soon.

  2. your summer days are very full! :) LOVED the painting! your kids are getting so big. *sigh*

    love the raspberries! i have to buy mine at the store!

  3. You have been busy. The time with your kids at home will fly by and before you know it you'll be looking back at those wonderful memories you are making now. Enjoy & savor the moments.

  4. That painting is really wonderful, and your pictures and text tell the tale of a very full and delightful summer. I love this post! :-)

  5. Fabulous phone photos, Amanda - each telling a story of summer. I like to wander, too - often I go out by myself just to breath and to think. I still miss my old Golden, dead now for 9 years. Sometimes, I think I see her out of the corner of my eye, romping beside me as I walk. Enjoy what's left of summer - enjoy those children.

  6. Sounds like you are having a great summer. Good for you! Keep it going.

  7. It looks like a wonderful summer!

  8. Wild raspberries - yum! But with 13 kids in the house I would need something a little stronger than raspberry juice!!

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  9. I just read The Fault in Our Stars, I really enjoyed it after the string of books I had been reading. Hard to say that a book like that was more uplifting, but it was. Something about the way we see the world as teenagers versus's just more refreshing. Or less hardened? Enjoy what is left of your summer! Hard to believe how fast it goes.

  10. It sounds as if your summer days have been busy, rewarding and surrounded with beauty. I find it hard to imagine a more perfect way to spend a summer. I can understand why you still miss McGee -- he was a great companion for you and your family.

  11. You are in the 'prime' of your life.. You NEED to put your kids/family FIRST.. Blogging will come ---but for me, It came AFTER my kids were grown. The kids grow up so fast --and you need to spend every moment possible with them... Sounds like you are doing just that this summer... I'm happy for you---and will tell you that I miss those days when we had kids running all over the house.... Those times were gone so quickly. Enjoy them!!!!!

    I know how much you miss that special doggie...

  12. 13 kids in the house? You need a lot of stamina for that, but it is so much fun having a house full of laughter and noise. The right ingredients for creating a happy childhood.And good that you can find some quiet time for yourself- enjoy and never feel guilty!
    I understand so well how you feel about McGee - even after 2 years I sometimes miss our big dog so very much.
    Have a wonderful end of the summer and holidays.

  13. Thanks for the summer update, Amanda. The John Burroughs quote is so true! Glad you and the family are having a good summer and enjoying the important things (or non-things) in life. The Fault in Our Starts is excellent. I'm working on a couple thrift store makeovers too. Good Luck with your projects.

  14. I knew you weren't a Point A to Point B person. Stopping to "smell the roses" is what makes modern life livable....:)

  15. Really beautiful photos Amanda . . . YUMMY!
    And your children too . . .
    I love visiting you . . .

  16. Wow...looks and sounds like a wonderful summer! So glad y'all are enjoying it to the fullest.

  17. Your August sounds just lovely, Amanda! Kayaking by the still lake ... Just hearing the water birds echoing from the distance, and the sound of the water dripping ... To the cheerful moments in the house filled with children - Wind in the Willows and a quiet afternoon to the pedicure :-)
    All my best to Mason - and to the Sister Nightingale!

  18. Your summer days are wonderfully filled to over flowing, yet as you say, your summer is short and you need to make the most of every day - which you indeed seem to be doing. Soak up that warmth and sunshine while it can be found.

  19. Hi Amanda! I saw your comment on my pin so I had to stop over here to say hello. I think the last time I was here you were buried chest deep in snow, so it is amazing to see these summertime photos! The kids look great and are getting so big. I love Lilly's happy painting :) And great minds think alike regarding that quote. As soon as I read the quote it totally resonated with me. We are kindred spirits for sure. I'm glad you are enjoying the summer and I will try to visit again soon!