May 25, 2016

Seagulls and Barnhart Beach

On Saturday we went to a nearby beach. By beach I mean sandy spot by the side of a river. Not an actual coastal beach. Still, it is beachy, with sand and water. 

We brought a picnic, but the best part, of course, was wading. We walk from one end of the beach to the other and then back again. It could probably be done in five minutes by a normal paced person, but with four interested kids, it takes about half an hour. 

I really adore these kids.

Elsie, making sure her skirt does not get wet.

Toes and sandy rocks.

Sandy hands

Gilbert is an enthusiastic wader. He was wet from his upper arm to his finger tips and from his waist to his toes. It happens every single solitary time. I also forget to bring extra clothes for him every single solitary time. 

A fun little tradition we have going on. 

A crab claw. (I think.)

The different colored sand


And then there were these cute little sandpipers.

My wandering girls 

The ruffly skirt held carefully away from the water and sand, the sturdy little legs... I know. I took too many pictures of this. But I am really noticing how quickly these sturdy little legs are growing up. And since I don't have another set of legs to watch grow up through babyhood, I am very bittersweet about the whole thing. I get a tiny bit irritated with people who say they wish they could just stop their kids from growing anymore. No one ever honestly means that, but after we had a scare with Gilbert, facing the possibility of him never actually maturing, I remember thinking it was a completely ridiculous thing to even say. How could you not want to watch your child grow and learn and master new skills? Fortunately, that scare with Gilbert passed over us. The diagnosis we received was somehow averted. But that situation has left an impression on me--how very, very lucky I am to watch my children grow and mature. So I don't want to stop that growing.

  I just want to wallow a little more thoroughly in their little kid-ness at this moment.  

Aren't they marvelous?

I am a bit of a sucker for seagulls. Maybe because I don't see them that often.  

Justin threw picnic scraps out for the seagulls so I could get some close up pictures.  

Sort of insane looking birds. That ring around their eye...

Taking off

Lily wanted in on the seagull feeding

They are so flat looking when they fly low.

And back they go to water.

On the way home, there were two fields completely awash in false mustard. So brilliantly yellow it looks fake.

May 22, 2016

Spring Evening in the woods

These pictures are from a few weeks ago. I am a little behind schedule. 

The evening Cody came home, the cousins and I went for a walk in the woods. Or rather, they went for a run, and I meandered along behind taking pictures. 

The boys had to be forcibly pried away from the creek and rocks.

Orianna dancing up to the woods.

Checking out the new calves.


Momma and baby

Holding hands cousins

For some reason, two calves were nursing off this cow. They aren't twins.

Geese heading north. Or south. Just taking in the sights.

I love all this cousin friendliness.

Out of the pasture and into the woods.

Blue cohosh

Spring beauties

Dutchmen's breeches

It feels a little silly to be putting up pictures of these when they have all stopped blossoming, but... I still like them.

Forest floor


Picking leeks. We normally dig up the roots, but that is always such a lot of work. This year, I just picked the tops, and they were much easier to deal with. I use them with salad greens in taco salad, throw them into soups in the last few minutes of cooking... They are scrumptious!

The kids all decided to do a little yelling, since they were in the woods. And it was springtime.

It was loud.

I love these kids!

Sweetness squared!

My little leek picker

Hepatica again.


Sunshiney Dutchmen breeches

This tree had barbwire staple to it year ago and has grown around it. 

Elliott had to get a stick and stick it through the holes in the barrels just to see what he could feel. It wasn't much. But it was good to check! 

It is funny how much of a difference two (or is it three!?!) weeks make in the spring. Everything is bursting with green now.

Love this picture. And Elliott who is running in the other direction.

Big cousins are the best!

Crazy kids!

I love them all squiggle and squiggles!

Evening light cows

There is so much to love in this picture!

And this one!!!

But this one might be my favorite. I love the lighting.

Sticking out its tongue.

Contemplative Lincoln. 

I know, I know. It is pretty much the same picture. But I couldn't decide between the two.