Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Two Weekends in Illinois

Mother's Day Weekend
I can't believe I am this far behind in my blogging. No, actually I can believe it. Obviously I am very aware of the minimal amount of blogging that's been happening since Mara entered my life. Sorry family journal/public ramblings ... I've had a sweet baby to hold!

Anyway, I do want to document our fabulous Mother's Day weekend at Rick and Carol's place last month. The kids were in heaven the whole time. They loved snoozing in sleeping bags in an empty upstairs bedroom (it's empty because of the move). They spent hours digging in the giant sandbox also known as the fire pit. Carol hides jewels in there and the kids love finding those little treasures. They may even love it almost as much as the smore's!

Isn't that the most gorgeous fire pit you've ever seen? It was such a beautiful evening to sit in the shade of those pine trees and enjoy (what we thought was) one last summer night at Grandma and Grandpa's.

Reid could hardly sleep that (Saturday) night because he'd been counting down all week to the day he'd get to give me his mother's day present. I've never seen him so proud or excited. It was nice to know he finds more joy in giving than receiving. And that says a lot, because this little boy loves to get new toys.

Perhaps the sweetest part about the necklace is that my own mother wore a clay bead necklace every mother's day. My brother Jon made it for her when I was Reid's age, so having one of my own felt like I'd really made it into motherhood hall of fame.

Of course, about twenty minutes before this picture was taken I was upset with Ben and the kids and we all just about packed up and went home ... but it was mother's day weekend so we are only recapping the perfect moments, right?

When the primary children in the Beloit ward were called up to sing the song they'd been practicing, my own kids joined them. I'd read Reid the words right before so he played along well. But Nell just stood front and center with her lips closed into a small but tight smile the whole time. They'd missed singing their Easter song because we were in Utah, so they weren't about to miss another one!

For dinner we headed over to Julee's house for a BBQ. As always, Reid was in heaven playing with Jackson and Nell and Allie had a ball. In fact, all four of them played outside together for most of the hour or so that we were there. I love watching them enjoy their cousins, and we are going to make a special point of seeing them regularly still. The kids were pretty sad as we drove away. They sure are going to miss staying at Grandma and Grandpa's house.

Last Weekend
The title for this section serves two purposes. Our second trip to Illinois occurred this last weekend, and it actually was the last weekend trip we will ever spend with the Szilagyi's at the Rockton house. Pretty crazy!

Sam, Bizzie (and the twins), and Lauren all came for a quick weekend. There was a good mix of seeing friends, playing with cousins, and packing up. We didn't arrive until after 8 pm Friday and we were on the road again by 4 pm Saturday, so it was a quick trip.

Since we'd said our goodbyes over Mother's Day weekend, the purpose of this trip was to pick up the piano Rick and Carol had so kindly offered me a while ago. Ben wasn't keen on the idea (and he still isn't), but we are now the proud new owner's of a used piano! I can't wait to get Reid into lessons this fall. We came home with other little treasures as well. The kids were over the moon excited to inherit Grandma's fairy garden collection. We had to use two pots to fit it all! And we had to go to the garden center first thing Monday morning, so they could have them all planted by noon. Getting it done that soon was still a trial of their patience.

Before we left Rockton Saturday afternoon we did squeeze in an hour at the pool with just about everyone (Bizzie, Sam and the twins stayed home for naps). Nell and Reid both went off the high dive. It was so fun to watch them. It was Mara's first time in the pool and she loved it. Lauren held her most the time because Coraline was clinging to me like a leech. We need to start throwing that girl in a pool more often.

It was a quick trip that had a few chaotic hiccups (ugh -- U-haul), but we were so glad we could make it down to see Grandma and Grandpa (and some Aunts and cousins) one last time. 

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