Sunday, July 07, 2013

Summertime Sweetness

Monday July 1 –
Happy Canada Day!

As we began writing this week’s entry, we were thinking how this was a typical week. But really we have come to the conclusion that none of our weeks are typical, which makes for a fun life here in Michigan with the kids. Hallie did her normal crack of dawn shift at work, and in the midst of leaving at 4:30 AM she somehow took ALL of the keys with her to work. That became a wee bit of a problem when Mike started getting ready to take Landon and Eliza to Eliza’s speech group. So, Hallie hurried home at the end of her shift and swooped up the kids and got to group with an hour remaining.  Afterwards, even though she didn’t want to go, Hallie and the kids ended up at the YMCA to workout. The library has a lot of fun things planned for kids this summer, and Hallie has scheduled the kids for a lot of them.  Today Landon made a fairy house out of recycled materials. We made it as boy-like as possible, and he had a fun time making it. 

The kids ended their evening with swim lessons. They both really seem to love it! Afterwards, Eliza decided to go sit on the porch and take in the falling rain.

This is the first time we've seen her stick her face up to literally drink the rain in!

Tonight Mike had to attend a memorial service for a colleague that passed suddenly. Her passing is a real blow to the college, and she will be missed.

Tuesday July 2 –
Monday evening Hallie had the bright idea to go to Windsor to see if she could still pick up on a few Canada Day sales. Before we left, Hallie had a few things to drop off at folks’ homes. We left early, which we have not done before, and made great time through the tunnel. We have our regular stores and pretty much stuck to that route, with an added exception that we will not keep in the future. 

We did not get home until nearly 4:00 PM, and that made for a LONG day. 
Bejewelled in Dollarama baubles

To top it off Landon still had Junior Tumbling class. He finds the class challenging but keeps doing it. Coach Shane paired him up with a young boy that Hallie thought was not a good choice because the two of them got along too well.  After class, she approached Coach Shane about the pairing and seeing what could be done for next class, and he told her the reason why he had paired the two. She felt his reasoning was sound, and Landon succeeded in helping a shy boy come out of his shell. Way to go, dude!
Just another routine night hanging out at home.

Wednesday July 3 –
Hallie worked, and then she headed to Bloomfield Hills with Eliza to take her to speech. Eliza did great at speech this week, and we love seeing her improvements! Since having sister missionaries serving here in Grosse Pointe we have been working with them a lot. Our family enjoys having the spirit of missionary work in our home again. In the evening, we had the chance to have the last discussion before baptism with a young woman named Britany. She is in her early 20’s and is absolutely amazing. I hope the elders realize what a golden convert she is. It all started with a classmate that she met in high school. They became friends as the years went on, and the rest is history. The elders had planned one discussion, and as the night progressed the discussion went a different way, and it was awesome!   

Thursday July 4 –
The Fourth of July was low key for our family, and it was quite nice. 
Happy Birthday, America, from our little firecracker!
Hallie had promised Landon that we would go and see Despicable Me 2 up at Partridge Creek, a promenade-style mall that’s fairly close by. We normally don’t take Eliza to the movies, but Landon wanted us all to go together as a family, so we relented. Now we can say that Eliza has experienced her first movie in the theatre. Eliza did quite well except for needing to go potty before the movie and then again partway through. After the movie we ate lunch at Rojo (always yummy) and took advantage of the patio to enjoy our meal al fresco
Here's to celebrating the defiant - er - independent spirit. 
We wandered around the mall for a bit, and the kids ended up playing in the dancing fountain like so many other kids. As we did not plan to play in the fountain, however, ours did not have swimsuits. Oh, well! The kids had a blast, and it sure helped them to beat the heat. 

Letter art from the Art-is-in Michigan Store
We were gone for 6 or 7 hours, and everyone was tired by the time we got home, so it was an early to bed for all.

Friday July 5 –
All of the administrators at Hallie’s work had the day off, so she worked longer to cover shifts that were empty. It was quiet a lot of the time with so many people out of town, but the diehards still came to get healthy. About 30 minutes before quitting time, Mike brought the kids down so they could play in the gym and blow off some steam. They seemed to have a lot of fun. 

We said good bye to Mike from there as he joined one of the elders and went to visit Lloyd and Bonnie, members of our branch with whom he has visited nearly every Friday for four years. Afterwards, they went to visit some other families in the branch. Since we did not do much on the 4th, we decided to roast s’mores and light sparklers this evening. The sister missionaries even joined us for a bit of the fun to celebrate Sister Decker hitting her one-year mark. Sister Decker found a blouse that did not fit anymore and burned it in the fire pit. 

Last year, Michigan passed an ordinance to allow personal use of big fireworks. Our neighbors made sure they took advantage of this, and it took us until 11:30 PM to get the kids to sleep (one of them crying in the meantime) because of the closeness of the fireworks.

Saturday July 6 –
On Saturday we decided it was time to clean the kitchen thoroughly. Mike was a great helper, and Landon even got in on part of the action. We then had a bit of an easy afternoon which was nice. 

Fergus is a love. He likes to cuddle up close to everyone.

We rounded out the evening by getting yogurt at a new yogurt place called Sno Go and then heading to Britany’s baptism. Not many of the branch members attended, and it was quite sad but hopefully we learn our lesson as well and will attend more in the future. Hopefully the kids will get used to sitting a bit longer as they were both quite antsy.

Sunday July 7 –
Mike found out last night that he did not have meetings this morning. Oh happy day! However, we were very relaxed in the morning, and when people started calling for rides that lit a fire under us that set us going. Hallie took Landon to pick up Otto, a guy investigating the church who lives by us, and then we picked up Britany (Who is amazing. Did we mention that?). Britany even bore her testimony and fasted today. She hasn’t even been a member for 24 hours. 

We missed the first big rainstorm of the day while we were at church, but Mother Nature treated us to a second course. 
Pictures don't do these deluges justice. 
The rain let up later on. Fergus has found his happy place with afternoon sun in the dining room. 

In the early evening, Hallie scored a four-berry pie, a cat carrier, and a cat bed. The Grosse Pointe Moms Club is a benefit to our family. The kids and Mike went on a walk and found all kinds of cool berries and enjoyed the fruit they found. 
Red raspberries from the garden. Woo hoo! 

The boy approves.

Juneberries (AKA serviceberries) growing on a neighbor's ornamental bush

"More, please!"

We topped the night off with the four-berry pie for dinner.

What a great week have had. This next week looks to be as good or better. The missionaries are doing young single adult family home evening in our home tomorrow night. Look for some more good stories next week!

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