July 2019

Hey everyone! Just thought I’d take a break from procrastinating buying back-to-school supplies to whip up a quick monthly recap of July. Here’s what we did! (Besides take funny photos with the leaf blower, thanks Joe.)

The weekend before the 4th of July we had a great time at my in-laws cabin. Ares found a new passion for boat rides that may rival his love for trucks, football, and Elmo. He frequently mentions “Grandpa’s cabin” and “Ares boat ride!” Hoping we can squeeze in one more trip up north before the summer concludes!

It’s also seem to become our family tradition to light sparklers and the teeniest “fireworks” ever after our primary Fourth of July activities. I think it’s kind of lame but the kids think colorful smoke is, like, the best.

In July we’ve had a family of happy harvesters as our garden is producing. This is our first year growing raspberries and Ares and Rosie could often be found plucking and eating them outside. Rosie also helps herself to grape tomatoes too which I think is pretty much the cutest.

Our girls did just about two weeks of swim lessons which went… ok, I guess? Swimming is really not their thing but they did improve a little bit during that time. And somehow, supervising Ares while the girls spent 50 minutes in the pool was the most exhausting thing I’ve done all year.

We have managed a couple trips to Lake Elmo which was way more fun than swim class for everyone, including Ares. I love having this super clean and convenient “beach” nearby!

Speak of Ares, he’s super into escaping from his bedroom during naps, our house whenever he pleases, etc. So we’ve had to re-baby proof our lives. And if anyone finds him outside, please return him to our house (or you can keep him for a couple of hours, that’s fine too.)

Some fun photography things happened in July as well ! I hosted my first-ever beginners photography workshop along with my friend Alysha who was visiting me from Madison. It went very well and I even have another one scheduled for September! Here is a link to the blog post about the workshop as well as feedback from the attendees Also, here is a link to sign up if you’re interested in being a part of the next one!

Also! I got to make a quick solo trip to Chicago to shoot a triple anniversary party (pictured above is me and my friend Anne from high school who coordinated the party planning!). I also photographed a few mini sessions in the 24 hours I was there. The experience was definitely a whirlwind, but it was a treat to be back home, even just for a little bit!

We ended July with a flourish as Joe and I packed up the kids and the dog and embarked on a road trip adventure to Asheville, North Carolina! Joe ran the Spartan Super while he was there and we had a great time exploring the area and doing lots of waterfall chasing too. More vacation photos to come!

Oh, and to keep it real, I want to make it clear that there have been various times when it’s been too hot, everyone’s been too cranky, and I just let the kids veg out with the apps or a show while enjoy the short-lived peace guilt-free. Because between all the hoopla about summer being all sunshine and care-free fun, there’s a lot of sibling fires to put out, kids constantly on the rampage for snacks, and crabbiness due to all the heat and togetherness.

I’m going to officially end this post with a pretty butterfly I spotted at Willow River sometime this month. I wish you all a lovely end to summer! I’ll be back here soon!

<3 rachel