summer 2011

summer 2011

Paul and I, all 16 kids and Ashley, Benjamin's wife...Christmas 2012

Paul and I, all 16 kids and Ashley, Benjamin's wife...Christmas 2012

Thursday, June 30, 2016

sunshine and happiness...and sand

We went to the beach!

Miss Camille...she forgot her bathing suit top, so her resourceful sister let her wear her looked like a suit top...mostly. Evelyn and I heard two teenagers out in the water commenting about it, so Evelyn glared at them, like a good big sister, ha.

Kathryn Grace...

I don't take pics of the girls in their suits, once they get we don't have many photos from today, because there were the four teenagers (Kathryn 18, Evelyn 16, Suzanne 15, Sonja 14), and Jon, Char, and Cam. I decided to post this one of me because...well, just's what I look like.

We cooked hot dogs and hamburgers over charcoal in the grill on the beach, then the kids roasted marshmallows. They didn't go on the playground, they didn't want to...ouch, they are growing up. They did play in the sand, and in the waves...Lake Ontario rustles up some nice big waves sometimes, and it was a blast. When I'm out in the water, I still find myself scanning the shore, making sure everyone is being supervised, and ha, we are all out swimming! There is no baby in a pram, no toddler at the water's edge with Daddy...old habits, you know.

The beach is just plain fun. The weather was absolutely perfect, warm but not overly hot, breezy, sunny...

As you can see, the fun begins well before we arrive at the beach. A carton of ice cream: $2. A 12-pack of cones: $1. The ice cream scoop: $3. Ice cream cones in the van for seven kids for only $6: priceless. And shh, Sonja was holding a few pizzas. I did not eat any pizza. I licked off the ice cream scoop, and yes, my girls took pictures of me standing there in the parking lot with the empty container and the scoop, getting the last bit out. Hopefully we were quite invisible to other shoppers.

Anyway. We are home now, and the kids have showered and gotten into comfy clothes. We had strawberries, picked fresh yesterday and sliced, nice and cold...bowls of them, yum.

We picked 16 pounds yesterday.

Our pool has been's getting clear!

Tomorrow is another busy day. I have an appointment in the morning, then have to get flea stuff for the animals, and a few gifts...birthdays, graduations...and a friend of ours is coming over tomorrow evening to celebrate his birthday with us, and Jon is going to make cupcake or something..., and the older girls are all going to a friend's graduation party.

Saturday, Paul is coming home from France! The older girls are all invited to Emily's.

Sunday, we are supposed to go to a park to celebrate the 4th of July, watch the symphony, and fireworks.

Anyway. It's busy, but I love summer. I love watermelon and drying clothes outside, and having fires, and the hot sunshine on my skin. I love getting up early and drinking coffee on the deck. I love when the kids get up one by one, all rumpled and rested. I love making iced coffee with Evelyn, and iced tea with Kathryn. I love watering the flowers and taking care of the pool, walking barefoot in the dewy morning grass.

Oh, so I had gained seven and a half pounds on vacation...I am still up four, but a better way to look at it: I lost three and a half, ha. It's so hard. But today I kept active, and ate lots of veggies, no bun on my burger, ect. I am easing back into my nice way of eating, and hopefully staying there a while.

I'm not going to obsess about it. I know I would be the happiest girl in the world with no trials or troubles, if I were thin. I would be on top of the world. Honestly, I was on the beach today, noticing the girls in the bikinis, so un-selfconscious-seeming, and I thought, if they can wear that, they can wear anything they want to...just go into a store, and pick out what they like...not worrying about fat arms (or batwings!), protruding bellies, love handles...I know it's not really true that being thin and in shape automatically equals happiness, just as having millions of dollars doesn't guarantee it. But what if you had BOTH!??! Just kidding.

The body is just a temporal thing, and the way we fret over it just shows how little we understand the promises God has in store for us. The only thing truly of value is that we get oil in our lamps, treasures in heaven, that we get wisdom and understanding in our situations, things of heavenly worth. All the riches and the thinness and the cool gadgets and the big beautiful houses...they aren't bad things, but to pine for them, to waste one's life gathering things that moths destroy and rust decays, how sad is that?

Anyway, enough preaching for tonight, I'm tired. The princesses and Evelyn are going on tomorrow morning's outing. Oh, I just remembered, we need more coffee. And bottled water for Evelyn's new Keurig.

Good night.

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