Friday, August 12, 2016

Nicolas Senior Pictures

Before Caleb left to go back to college we had a little photo session with Nicolas.  Caleb was the creative one--location, props, posing, lighting--and I just took the pictures. 

Cousin Matthias also took a few pictures of Nicolas while at Newton Hills State Park this summer.   Check out the groomed vs hair contrast.  I think he is a good-lookin' chap either way!


These two have birthdays within a week of each other.  For the next year we will have four teenagers in the family--19, 17, 14, and 13!

Monday, August 8, 2016

Summer Travels Part 2--Big Sand

Once again our Big Sand vacation was full of activity.  We came home tired but with tons of wonderful memories.  The weather was a little warmer than in the past, so most of us were thankful for the new air conditioning in the cabins (sorry Greg and Shan!).   

One of the first changes we noted was that the "deep" white dock was replaced by a yellow raft.  The kids were initially devastated (how could they remove an icon?!?), but admitted later that they liked the switch.  

It was a little sad to find the white dock just lying back in the woods

I'm sure Greg will appreciate the boat tow pictures.  Don't we always start the week getting the boat 'kinks' out?  

A fun memory that I wish I had actually videotaped was the whole debacle of Anna finding her lost watch.  Evidently, before swimming out to the yellow raft that afternoon she thought she had taken off her watch.  We searched the beach and the cabin quite thoroughly before she admitted that maybe she just thought about taking it off, but in actuality, forgot, and it fell off in the water while she was swimming.  Evidently the watch band doesn't fasten very well.  That evening after supper I could see that she was still bothered by the lost watch (she takes after her mother).  I offered that she could take out a paddle board and check in the water where she had been swimming to see if she saw it lying at the bottom of the lake (the benefits of a beautifully clean, clear lake).   It was only a suggestion to give her something to do as I didn't actually think she would find it.  Here are a few pictures of what initially took place:

These girls are important to the story because they made things only slightly more difficult by being too "helpful".  This was all part of the hilarity of the situation.

Never having been on a paddle board before, Anna asks Seth to paddle her out and she will look at the bottom of the lake.

In the meantime Caleb and Finn join in their canoe which causes all the girls on the yellow raft to jump in and join them.  

Anna spots her watch and tries to point it out to the girls that are in the water.
At this point I set down my camera, but actually it was just getting good.  One of the cousins climbs on the paddle board and the paddle board tips dumping Anna and Seth in the water.  Anna tries to stand on the bottom and relocate the watch.  She spots it, but has difficulty diving to retrieve it because she forgets she has a life jacket on.  Absolutely hilarious.  In the meantime, Seth is trying to flip the paddle board back over and can't quite get it done.  He paddles to the yellow raft and tosses his oar on the raft, not noticing that he over throws the paddle and it is now drifting into the middle of the lake.  Once he notices, he panics and calls for help.  Caleb is laughing so hard in the canoe with Finn that he can hardly paddle to the yellow raft to help Seth.  Free entertainment.  The watch was ultimately found and was still working!

More beach/water fun:

 The twins are at such a fun age...I could watch them and be entertained for hours.  

Dad had good intentions of reading...

A little beach spike ball,

lots and lots of paddle boarding,

some canoeing,

a bit of beach art, 

and our annual water flicker ball game.

We also enjoyed our daily bald eagle sighting.

One night after supper Dad and Mom and Cora and I (and I think Alexandra was also with us) went fishing for bluegill, or at least something other than rock bass.  I don't remember if the fishing was great, but the evening was absolutely beautiful. 

Note the two cuties (Andrew and Seth) playing spike ball on the beach.

We did catch a few keepers.

The fishermen humming past us, heading toward the inlet to fish for northern in Lake Ida.
Another night, we experienced the Full Buck Moon, so named because this time in July the bucks begin to grow new antlers.  

Pontoon fishing trip

A nice morning catch

Our Friday noon fish fryer.

 Dunking contest?  My only regret is that I didn't get Michael's dunk on film.  Drat!

Supper time with the crew.

Here Grandpa is making big animal noises to match the big bison picture on his phone.

One afternoon we took a few minutes to do a photo recreation.  How time flies!

A few photos of our traditional breakfast stop on the way home in Sauk Centre.

The sky was beautifully ominous, but thankfully, not dangerous!