July was our month for living up summer with no vacations on the agenda. We definitely did not lack in the number of outings we fit in. Even though it got a little too busy for my liking sometimes, I’m glad that at the end of the summer, we’ll be able to say that we both worked and played to the fullest extent.
The boys fell into a good system of accomplishing some homework and chores each morning with a new family system we implemented. It’s like fingernails on a chalkboard for me to see them lazing around in front of a screen unless they’ve accomplished a few things that feel productive.
We lived in the water whenever possible. We pool hopped from our neighbor’s pool to the community pool to my brother’s apartment pool to the waterpark pool to the swimming lessons pool. Anything to cool down in the crazy summer heat.
Crew cheerfully toted along while I tried to make the days fun for the older boys. I was happy to discover that he shares my love for all things nautical.
We put the boys to work to clean up our SUV and sell it.
I noted the triple digit temperature on our last day in the SUV.
We officially became a minivan family. My cool factor definitely went down several notches, but the boys are delighted about our new (used) mode of transportation. At least we can all come home from the hospital in one car.
We saved the park for the evenings when it wasn’t so hot.
Our friends from Colorado stayed with us for a weekend and of course wanted to soak in the beauty of Temple Square. We ate at a restaurant overlooking the temple and I kicked myself for not having my nice camera with me as we strolled the grounds afterwards. I’m always amazed by the upkeep and variety of flowers.
Troy had the opportunity to go to Girls’ Camp again this year with the Bishopric. It looks like they had a completely serious and mature evening…
My mom took Blake to see his first play at our local professional theater while we were in New York and Troy and I went a few weeks later. Our cousin played the lead in Mary Poppins and she was phenomenal. I’m not sure what Blake was more thrilled about; all of the moving sets onstage or the fact that Mary Poppins knew his name and greeted him after the production.
Summer wouldn’t be summer without a few summer dollar movies with friends thrown into the mix as well. The boys didn’t actually see Guardians of the Galaxy, but they were sure excited to view some of their favorite family friendly movies.
We played with friends from school a few times as well. One of our outings in particular was challenged by rain clouds, but the boys were grinning from ear to ear when we let them play in the mud. Crew slipped and fell into a puddle almost instantly upon walking outside, so I thought, why not? What is childhood without a little dirt every now and then?
Add in our weekly library trips, boating, reunion-ing, doctor and dentist visiting, book clubbing and working towards our goal of visiting 20 parks this summer, and we had a pretty full month. Summer is exhausting in a whole different way than the school year, but I wouldn’t trade our hot school-free days for anything.
We ended our summer with our annual trip to Michigan. We love being in Michigan. However, getting there is another story.
Thankfully, the older boys helped with the distribution of our luggage weight. I managed to pack all four of us in one suitcase by loading up their backpacks with shoes and toiletries. They were good sports about lugging around the backpacks that were almost bigger than them.
I thought I was crazy last year when I flew with three boys in tow. But adding the basketball in my lap and a wiggly toddler who had no intention of sitting still brought on a whole other element of chaos this time around.
Blake saved me during our layover by entertaining Crew.
I was so relieved that Troy was able to at least fly home with us. Especially because he got Crew to nap briefly while Nash was throwing up in the barf bag next to me and I was on the verge of losing it myself.
I’m all set to avoid flying in general for a looooong time. It’s a good thing baby #4 will guarantee that we remain stationary.