June 29, 2010

What a year

This summer marks the one year anniversary of Patrick's State Farm office in Ketchum.  We knew this  first year would be the hardest year, so it's nice to see the conclusion.

Guess all those late nights, constant emails/phone calls and traveling has paid off.

Not to brag or anything, but I think my husband ROCKS!

June 28, 2010

Day at the lake

Summers are short in the mountains of Idaho, so we try to tackle each week full throttle.  We have our list of activities and run from there. Just love it!

This weekend, we drove north to Redfish Lake.  In my opinion, it is one of the most beautiful lakes, so I just had to take a ton of pictures.  We took our kayak and took turns kayaking around the crystal clear waters.  Other than that, we played, relaxed and enjoyed the water and warm sunshine.

The view of the lake.  The sharp mountain peaks are just gorgeous against the striking blue sky.  Crazy to think that there is still snow on them.
The lake is always full of kids and they all end up sharing water toys. Braden had so much fun playing with other boys and trying to catch fish.  He didn't want to leave at the of the day. He has such a cute mischevious smile.
When it was my turn to kayak, Elise didn't want me to leave, but she was also really nervous to kayak in the lake.  Her attachment to me won over her fears, so we were able to enjoy some girl bonding time in the middle of the lake. She talked the entire time and on our way back she said, "Mom, this is so much fun!".
My boys enjoying yummy ice cream. 
I just love my family! Never a dull moment with them.

The lake is still being fed by melting snow, so it is COLD!  We don't swim in the lake, just play in it. By the time Patrick took this picture, my calves were numb.

We all just had so much playing together all day long.  
Redfish Lake, we will be back!

But for now, this is the end.

June 25, 2010

The chosen ones

We are thrilled and blessed to announce that our home has been chosen as a home for a Robin's nest.  We have already found the cracked blue robin eggs on the ground and each day we get to watch mama Robin feed her wee baby birds.

Poor mama Robin probably didn't realize that this house came with 2 big dogs, 3 curious and load children and one nosy human mama.

Thank you mama Robin for giving us such a magical and sweet experience.

June 23, 2010

Where the races are...

Mr. Will's "Game On" Face

Ok, I will admit, this family is a little competitive.  We don't care who wins or loses, we just have fun competing.  The prizes don't hurt either!

Mr. Will competed in his first bike race.  He was in the 5 and under group.  Thankfully, this 2 year old  didn't realize that he was the only little guy not 4-5 years old.  
That boy loves to ride his bike and feel like the big kids. He was very proud of himself, so were we!

Braden also did his first bike race.  Each time we rode past me, he was searching the crowd for me and smiling a genuine smile.

Just another reason why I love summer!

June 21, 2010

Living the dad life

It's been awhile since we have been camping, so we will call this practice camping or fake camping.  

We spent the entire day with nature---venturing on a new hike, finding a stream full of trout, chasing butterflies, and just enjoying the great outdoors together.

Yet, when it was evening, we walked on home to make the traditional campfire treat.....s'mores!
Patrick and Braden even made us a campfire in our backyard. Is that legal? Probably not, but heck, this is Idaho!

So, we had lots o' nature, s'mores and even that campfire smell on our clothes, but when our eyes were tired, we had warm, comfy (and clean) beds.  My perfect way to go camping, for now.  

June 20, 2010

Our own private Idaho

A few months ago, Patrick won a kayak through State Farm. We love kayaking as a family, so to test out our new rig, we ventured down to one of our favorite spots---Silver Creek.

Usually, we have two kayaks for our family, but this is a really long kayak, so we could fit our entire family on it.  Silver Creek is just beautiful---there's a reason why Ernest Hemingway would hunt and fish there all the time--- and I would highly recommend that all of you come to visit us, so we can take you down there.  Sounds like a plan?

Our view the entire ride.
My handsome boys led the back of the kayak...totally in synch with each other.
And we had the front row seats.
Mr. Will has on my lap the entire ride and half way down the creek, he fell asleep with his head on my belly. The soothing atmosphere and rocking motion sure was relaxing for all of his.

As usual, we didn't see many animals due to how noisy we are, but we did see a cool crane!

June 18, 2010

A whole new us

Perhaps I'm the only one floored by the difference in family dynamics that occur between the school year and summer time.  Being that this past school year was my family's first experience of full time school, I was completely clueless.

Our life is about 180 degrees different now than it was 2 weeks ago. I just never imagined it would be.  A couple of weeks ago, our lives revolved around school (Kindergarten and part time preschool) and sports.  Everything, even our social outlet, revolved around that.  We were a well oiled machine who got up every morning via alarm clock and functioned the way we were supposed to or what our calendar told us to do.  We enjoyed life like that.

Now.....we wake up whenever our bodies tell us and function the way we WANT to.  Every morning, I ask the kids, "what do you want to do today?".  It reminds me of those sweet days when they were all preschoolers and toddlers.  If we are too busy playing outside and forget to eat lunch or clean the toilets, then there is another time to do all of that.  If we want to take an last minute jaunt to the water park, then shall be it.

We are relaxed, we are happy, and we are always together.  The kids are in love with each other again. Just like the old days.

Like I said, I had no clue how much our life had changed during the school year.  

For now, I'm really enjoying our new life.

June 14, 2010

Thank you summer!

Thank you summer for giving us longer (and warmer) days. We love you summer and never want you to leave.

A few things that have kept us "busy" and so happy this past week.  

*making and eating popsicles

*digging in the dirt to find worms and voles (think big mice)

*swinging, swinging and more swinging

*Lots of reading and coloring

*Running into friends at the library and park

*eating outside

*Staying up late and sleeping in

June 10, 2010

You know you live in small town Idaho when...

I just had to laugh about this...

The "news" of the groundbreaking of our soon to be home actually was news in the local paper.  They had all the details of our house, but thankfully excluded our names.  

That would have been a little too close and personal.

June 9, 2010

The joys of mommyhood

It was another beautiful evening last night in Sun Valley.  The weather was nice, the sun was shining so we were enjoying ourselves outside.  I was sitting on the front porch and the kids were having the ultimate time running around our front yard.  They were laughing so hard at each other as they were running in circles around one another.  

My heart was so filled with love and happiness and I know that I had the goofiest grin on my face. I was happy and didn't want to be anywhere else except for in that moment.  I kept thinking that I never want to forget this special moment.

Then, Mr. Will ran over to me coughing and threw up all over me.  

Ahhhhh, the joys of motherhood.  Keeps me on my toes!

The picture has nothing to do with the story, but it does feature me and my side kick Mr. Will, so it will do for now.  

June 8, 2010

Let the summer fun begin

Around 7:00 last night, the "normal" bath/bedtime routine time for us, I decided to take the kids for a walk/bike ride. It was a gorgeous day, the sun was shining and hey, it's summer time!

Just down the street from us, they quickly discovered a mud puddle.  

Oh, yes they did!

Covered in mud from head to toe!
If you heard their sweet and constant giggling, you would have allowed it to.

Besides, that is what summer (and washing machines) are for!

June 7, 2010

3 cheers for summer!

School is out!  Hip hip hooray!  The whole family has loved being involved in Braden's Kindergarten and Elise's preschool, but we are all ready for some serious playtime and downtime.

Since it has been raining A LOT here lately, to celebrate our first real day of summer break, we took a trip down to the Shoshone Falls to admire the waterfalls and to go on a hike.  It was so great having the whole family together and not having a schedule.  

Yeah for summmer!

Who knew that such amazing falls were in Idaho?
These 3 are the reason I am so excited for summer.  

Braden finding frogs in the swamp. He tried so hard to catch one.

Peek a boo!  This 2 year old has quite a personality!
The cute Elise showing off my hat.

The kids kept wanting to hold our hands, hug us and kept telling us how happy they were.  I'm so glad that we made them so happy since they always warm my heart!

June 2, 2010

More Father/son time

This summer, Patrick and I are designated one night a week as "Date Night".  One of the kids will go on a date with one of us or Patrick and I will go on a date.  To kick off our "Date Nights", Patrick took the boys golfing at Sun Valley's newest 18 hold putting course---think minature golf minus all the fun stuff.

Of course, they loved it!
Watch out Tiger Woods, this kid has skill and MORALS.

My handsome boys.

As for Elise and I, we walked and shopped around Ketchum drinking hot chocolate.  Already looking forward to next date night!

June 1, 2010

Dad day

Every since we decided to send Braden to his school, this is one of the events that I have been looking forward to the most---Dad's Woodmaking Day.

All the dads came to Kindergarten to spend the morning making creations from wood. I was expecting Braden to bring home a box and call it good.  Boy, was I wrong!  Apparently the Kindergarteners and the dads are much more skillful than I am.

Patrick helping Braden with the saw.  See, this is the point where I would have lost a finger or two, so thankfully it was DAD's woodmaking day.

Every boy loves hammers and nails!
A helicopter and a rad birdhouse were made by the Buchanan team.  
Braden and his Kindergarten boy posse.