Lately

J and I watched Wall-E for the first time and he loved it:

But before that he was my wedding date, while A and B were at Cub Haunted:

A turned nine:

And went to The Phantom Tollbooth play with his class (and Granna!):

We graduated to full Monopoly:

And the boys hiked Monte Sano for Cub Scouts:

And that’s a little of our life lately!

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Cub Haunted

One of A’s favorite camp outs of the year is Cub Haunted. They get to use sling shots, practice using BB guns, go on a haunted hay ride, and all kinds of other fun activities. He had a blast!

I love these camp outs. It gives A and B a chance to just hang out, away from all of the hustle and stress of work and school. A always returns full of stories to share and brimming with excitement about their trip. It’s the best!

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Camp Jackson

This past weekend J and I joined in our very first camp out. Let me just say, I am not a camping person. Unless it’s a desert. Or a beach. Or a place devoid of all plant life. However, A had very much been looking forward to us joining him, so I took some extra Benadryl and hoped for the best.

It also happened to be in the middle of the end of September heat wave, so it was ridiculously hot. Insert eye roll.

However, we put together Ninjago stickers:

Explored the flat trails (we opted out of the 800 elevation hike):

And found a new friend!

It was a blast getting to spend time with the boys and B. And now I’m going to go take some more allergy meds, as I recover from the trip. Ha!

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Weekend adventures

We’re at the point in the year where all of us are two feet jumped in with work, school, volunteering, sports, etc. so my blog is on a bit of the back burner at the moment. However, in a few weeks I’ll have some fun fall posts to share, so stay tuned! Until then, I’m playing catch up with our weekend highlights.

J got the golden star at his soccer game for scoring five goals! This kid LOVES soccer.

We celebrated B’s birthday and I surprised him and the boys with a Nintendo Switch:

B’s parents came into town for the weekend and we hiked part of Monte Sano during their visit:

And checked out the stream below:

 

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Blevins gap nature preserve

After J did well hiking the Keel Mountain Preserve, we decided to test out the Blevins Gap Nature Preserve. This trail has a significant amount of elevation, and is about two hours round trip. It is quite shaded, which was nice, and has a spectacular view of our city at the top.

The beginning of the trail is sunny and open…

But a few minutes in…

You can see a difference! Much shadier. After awhile on a straight path, we started heading up the incline:

And found a cave along the way:

And after awhile we finally reached the top:

Gorgeous view at the top of the rock!

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Having our cake

So besides it being Auburn’s first football game this weekend…

We also celebrated my 35th birthday! Thirty five doesn’t seem right, but so it is! A’s about to be nine, y’all. Nine.

So besides opening presents and general birthday chaos,

B made me an amazing brisket, and I made my own cake with some help from J.

There’s recipe I got from my sister and it’s essentially a combination of this Mix and Match Mama recipe (minus the vanilla bean paste), and this Kevin and Amanda frosting (with butter instead of Crisco). I made it in sheet pan form and followed the lowest time on the funfetti box. It is so good! Especially with ice cream. Perfect for celebrating half-way to forty!

 

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The end of summer…

Technically summer is just getting started in the south and will continue until mid to late October. However, the boys summer break is drawing to a close and we have just a mere week left before it’s back to school, sports, Cub Scouts, piano lessons, and more. We are currently living summer break to its fullest including,

A final trip to the library for story time:

We finished swim lessons and the boys improved by leaps and bounds:

We had dinner at a hibachi grill and the boys loved it:

We checked out the hay bales prepped for the winter:

And speaking of winter, the boys had their first blizzards:

The boys played some evening catch:

And ran through the sprinklers:

Enjoying those last bits of summer before they are gone!

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Navigating the bike trail

Same creek, same trail, what’s new?

All the boys biked the trail!

I ran behind so that I could stop with J when he paused to look at sticks, butterflies, and bunnies:

We only went as far as the creek because that’s about J’s limit (plus it was fairly hot even though there was shade):

The boys did great! And after we had lunch and immediately headed to the pool to cool off:


Hurray for summer!

 

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Fourth & family

The boys have had a terrific time this Fourth of July week, with lots of cousin time, family in town, and time at the pool and playing outside.

We swam at the pool:

Twirled glow bracelets while watching fireworks:

Played spike ball:

Put together puzzles:

Played red light/green light:

And other outside games:

Had an anniversary celebration with my parents (43 years! They’re the best!):

Took a few family photos:

We had a terrific week!

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Running and riding

Temperatures are back to normal June now, but we had several days of super low humidity and cooler temps. We headed out to enjoy being out and not boiling hot at 3 p.m. . I ran down to the track near our house, and B met me there with the boys and their bikes. While I waited for them, I realized I need better running shoes:

Mine are decent, but I need some better cushion I think. I’m currently searching for new ones, but it’s been put on the back burner because the boys all needed new shoes, as theirs have holes in them. How do kids wear through shoes so quickly??

B and the boys showed up a few minutes after I got there, and I ran a few laps while they rode their bikes:

The boys ride pretty fast now, I’m going to have to get a bike as well to keep up with them. J is begging us to take off his training wheels, so we may test that out later this summer!

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