After School Shenanigans
Holy cow it's been a long time since my last 10 on 10 post with this awesome group of ladies. It's tough to get 10 images of my boys together these days, they're growing up so fast and life just seems to be zooming by. I'm happy to get back to it though, I'm going to do my damnedest to keep it up again. I want to remember them at every stage, right now they are 10, 7, 5 and their sister/friend/neighbor Katherine is 7 as well.
This winter has been ridiculously warm. This particular day in February it got up to 60 degrees, I'm sure that has nothing to do with global warming though, that's just a farce.
All black and white seemed fitting because even though it's warm, it is dreary and ugly in the mid-west right now.


 
 
This is our favorite watering hole to visit in the summer.  We usually take an evening at the tail end of summertime because the water is warm.  It dawned on my on a warm 70 degree day in October, that we hadn't made it down this summer.
So we put on our rain boots and headed down to the creek.

It felt familiar, but different. The boys still love to explore and skip rocks, but Kaiden is getting so old. After a half an hour or so, he was ready to go, I'm sure partly due to the fact that his socks were soaked.
But nevertheless, we made it down, for one more year and made memories.

Head on over and see Janine's lovely everyday in her Tasmania home.
 
 
Sometimes it feels a little dishonest to share our story telling type images to be honest, because despite the happy appearance, we're not singing "Kumbaya" some days.  Pictures tell a story, but only a glimpse of the story really. We capture what we see or what we want to see, but not always the whole truth. We have A LOT going on right now, trying to make some dreams happen and all...it's stressful most days.  
It had been a trying week, with a lot going on, we were all looking forward to running away and getting lost in nature for a bit.  So, we went camping, like we do from time to time, and for the most part it was crummy. The boys are at an age where they are constantly nit-picking and whining and pushing each others, and Eric and my buttons all . the . time.
Normally, this type of trip does it for us, but not this time.  There were time outs in a camping chair, there were tears shed by them and me and I wonder how I will view this post 2, 4, 6, years down the road.
I just don't know really, I suppose we will remember roasting marshmallows for s'mores, hearing owls hooting in the morning from our tent and finding a walking stick on our car, just as we were heading home.

Yeah, I'll choose to remember that.


 
 
We go on adventures a lot,  and we get along best when we're traveling. These memories are shaping our boys' childhood into something that will be buried deep in their souls, and I have a feeling they will emerge when they're sitting around the campfire telling stories of their adventures when they were little boys, to their children.
That thought makes me happy.


Please have a look at my sweet and talented friend Rowe Timson and her amazing life/adventures living in Bali with her beautiful girl and hubs.
 
 
If you give a toddler a muffin...he might just eat it in a box...naked.

I love the age of 3.

He has his fits.

But he worships the ground I walk on.

He tells me "Mama, you're so beautiful."

I know this stage is fleeting.


He still loves to pretend.

I love that he will turn a cardboard box into a make believe land...while eating his muffin.



Now please pop over and see the very talented Melissa Weicker's work....I LOVE her work.
 
 
We went sledding...and it was brutal.

snowday~yippie!

20 degreeeeeees

some tears from the wind

well needed hot chocolate and coffee.



Now please have a look at my wonderfully talented Bali friend Rowe Timson. Her work is simply gorgeous.
 
 
It's really cold in Ohio right now. 

They're predicting we will get many Polar Votexes this winter.

Fantastic.


The only good thing about that is snow days.

This was our first snow day of the year.

and it was 18 degrees.

We had to get out of the house before we killed one another.

We lasted 15 minutes.

Please continue on with our circle and see what winter looks like for the other awesome ladies in this group.
Sara is a talented cold weather babe as well...love her.
 
 
I can't believe 2013 is coming to a close.
Working with these talented ladies has been amazing.

I've learned this year,
there is:
A time for everything: a time to relax and a time to be busy,
a time to frolic and a time to lay up food for the winter,
a time to receive and a time to give, a time to begin and a time to finish.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie


Even though I have always wanted to make this a tradition, it just never seemed to happen.
The boys were so little and it seemed more of a hassle.
Now that Adrik is 2, I went on a hunt for the perfect tree farm and found it.

This is how I had always pictured us getting our tree.

a perfect snow white day.

a cozy little tree farm where we cut down our own tree.

a glistening pond with a gorgeous landscape.

hot chocolate.

After a long Google search, I found The Country Cabin Farm,  it was only 30 minutes from our house.

The tradition has begun.

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Now head on over and see my talented Cleveland Ohio Lifestyle Photographer friend, Maria Manco.
Her children are so beautiful as is her work.
 
 
This was our first hike of the fall season. Everyone was stoked to get out and about at first.
We go on a lot of adventures, some go smoothly and some go a little something like this...

"Mama, hey Mama, I'm hungry"
"Mama, hey Mama, I'm tired of hiking"
"Mama, hey Mama, where are we going next"
and so on.

We ended at the "Mellow Mushroom" for pizza.
It was the end to a whiny day, but it was our day, as a family...
I'll take it.




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"my feets hurts mama"
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daddy found a snake.
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when you're 4, the questions, never.ever.stop.....ever.
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he was mellow at the Mellow Mushroom, not really, he was actually pretty poopy because he was STARVING.
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the end.
Now continue on to see the beautiful work of my Cleveland Ohio Lifestyle Photographer friend.
Maria Manco is amazing.
 
 
I have made it a priority to slow down this school year.
I don't want my boys to feel like their childhood was constantly rushed.
I don't want them to feel like we were always running.
I don't want them to wonder why I didn't play with them more.

I want them to feel like we did a lot of great things together as a family, like eating dinner.
I hope they remember their excitement when we,
took a bike ride on this beautiful, fall school night.
how we rode to Panera to eat dinner because it was too perfect outside not to.
and how we topped off the evening with frozen yogurt and a walk through our favorite field.

the first photo was taken the day before the other images, but it speaks volumes to me about how I am feeling right now.
the rest were taken....on a beautiful school night.


"In the midst of rushing around to get everyone out the door this morning, this stopped us in our tracks.
It was a reminder that we must slow down and pause,
if only for a moment to enjoy beauty that surrounds us."
-ali deck
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I love this girl so much.
I have always been a fan of her gorgeous work and I'm lucky to call her my friend.
Hop on over and see what Alana Strouse has captured for October.