Ares · Cecelia · Celebrating · Family · Rosemary · Spartan Race · St. Cloud · Summer · Weekends

June 2019

At Teddy Bear Park with Ares. One of our last mama-son outings before the girls were home for the summer!

I feel like summer has barely begun, but somehow, we are already one-third of the way through it. And the days are on their way to being darker and shorter again… eek. That’s not very glass-half-full of me to say, but I think it puts into perspective how brief and beautiful this time of year is and although we (mamas) may spend it telling our kids NO they don’t need one more snack (or to quit whining about being bored), we gotta soak up the sun and summer before it’s all but gone again.

This June has been nuts. Even with the girls not getting out of school until June 12. Here are just a few of the things we did/that I took photos of. Most of this month has honestly been a blur.

End of the year 4K celebrations and Rosie with one of her buddies Stella
Cece;s end-of-year-picnic
Cece’s year-round buddies
Meeting Clifford at the book fair
Rosie the graduate

We attended many end-of-the-year celebrations including Cece’s end-of-the year picnic and Rosie’s preschool graduation in the same day. And then followed it by the book fair the following morning.

Cece had her first overnight camping trip with her Girl Scouts troop. She raved about the time the spent at Fawn Doe Rosa (a nature center where she got to pet and befriend all the animals to her heart’s content). They camped at Interstate Park, made s’mores, did all sorts of activities, and kind of made me wish that I had done girl scouts at some point in my life!

Rosie spent a week at The Dancing House participating in a Unicorn and Rainbows dance camp. I was so impressed by their routine at the end of the week and kind of amazed at how much Rosie has matured since her first dance camp experience two years ago! (Her first year she stood and pouted while the rest of the kids danced, which I still have a video of. This year she preformed, emoted, and was a joy to watch!)

In true Gaetz family fashion, we participated in the Minnesota Spartan Sprint. (Rather, Joe did the sprint, Cece ran the one-mile race, and Rosie ran the half-mile, her first Spartan experience!) I was so proud of my family! And only mildly exhausted from pushing Ares around in the stroller.


We got our garden going and growing this year. A few changes. We planted less. We started composting. And a few new additions include raspberries and brussels sprouts (probably not to be served together, but still excited for them to produce!)

I’ve been fantastically busy with photography this June. I shot one wedding, six additional sessions, and had one get-together with other local photographers where we did headshot swaps. The above photo is of me and one of my very dearest friends Kristina just a couple hours after she gave birth to her son Reece (his newborn session is on my photography blog). I’ve been trying to blog one session a week. I also created and shipped a couple albums this month. Lastly, I planned and promoted a CLASS I’m going to teach in July… a photography basics class for beginners that’s been an idea of mine for a long time and I can’t wait to put it into action next month. And if you haven’t seen it yet, I posted a promotional video for my business that was created in the spring by Joanna Liu!

Collapsed, but happy after a 6 mile run

With all the time I spend with my face in front screens, I’ve been trying hard to make time to do healthy screen-less activities. I’ve continued trail running this month as well as taking dance classes myself at The Dancing House. I’ve been lifting things at the gym less, but have been outside a lot more and I am ok with that tradeoff.

With a day full/ house full of kids, it’s more important to me than ever to wake up slow and wake up early to fill my own cup every morning. This includes making myself coffee and breakfast, getting as much editing/blogging/social media posting done as possible, along with a few household items before the kids get up. By the end of the day, I’m usually wiped out, I look like I’ve been attacked by a flock of angry birds, and I can’t wait to collapse on the couch with Joe. Again, as busy and bananas as summer with the kids can be, I’m extremely grateful that these are my days!

At the end of the month we made a trip to St. Cloud to celebrate my father-in-law’s retirement! He’s finally punched out after 48 years and I couldn’t be happier for him. All of Joe’s siblings plus their kids were able to attend this party and we miraculously managed a group photo!

Last, but not least, we finally managed to organize a baptism for all 3 of our kids at Resurrection Lutheran Church. Rosie (in true Rosie fashion) fully resisted the baptismal ceremony, but all in all, it felt like a blessed and beautiful morning to be with all of our family during this special moment for our kids. It was a strange, stormy and sunny day, complete with everyone coming back to our house afterwards for sandwiches and socializing. Getting our kids baptized has literally been on my to-do list for eight years, but not being regular church goers, it felt really hard to make it happen. My heart is happy that we found a good time, place, and people to do this with.

Ending this post with some peonies I cut from our one shrub in the front. Last year it only had two blooms, this year it had about nine and it filled me with joy!

Well, that’s pretty much June everyone! Remember what I said about the days getting shorter and us inching closer to winter again. Don’t take for granted these hectic and hot summer days because they’ll be gone all too soon!

<3 Rachel