Thursday, August 10, 2017

School days & summer afternoons.

It's still hot as Hades outside, but nonetheless you can feel the certainty of summer winding down. Bags of school supplies sitting at the ready, new tennis shoes with nary a scuff mark to be found, and the excitement of finding out your teacher for the year- all are pretty good clues.

Today is Henry's first day of first grade. The house is strangely empty without him to keep me company during Charlie's nap time. I already miss hearing the scattering of Legos and listening to him play with his sister. But he was so excited this morning. Bed made, quick shower, breakfast eaten and he was raring to get out the door. "Henry, do you want me to walk you in?". "Only if you want to, Mommy.". Sweet boy. I didn't dare squash the confidence he had to walk in there on his own. The minute he got out of the car Charlie starting saying, "Find him! Find him!". More than one gal is going to miss his sweet face.

Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;

Luckily he and Charlie left evidence of a morning selfie session on my phone, so his sweet face is nearby if I need to take a peek.

Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;

Last night College Grove Elementary had their yearly "Ice Cream Social". Basically, to Henry this means: meet your new teacher + get a popsicle. He's in. We met his teacher, Mrs. Martin, and he was so happy to see some familiar faces from Kindergarten. Afterward, we dropped Daddy and Charlie off at the house and headed out for a surprise trip to celebrate the last day of summer vacation. The Fair. The last time we went was a couple of years ago, so I think it all seemed new to him again. The fair is such a magical place when you're a kid.

Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;

Did I mention that this boy has no fear? There we only two rides that he didn't go on- and that's only because he wasn't tall enough. I'm pretty sure I swore off nausea-inducing Pirate ship rides after our trip to Lake Winnepesaukah a few years ago. So imagine my surprise when I found myself being convinced and pulled into the line for this contraption.

Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;

Slow Sunday afternoons might be the thing that I will miss the most about summer. Whether we're hanging out with our favorites from next door on the driveway, or with our friends from the next county over the story is similar- kids playing, adults catching up and everyone just enjoying some time to hang. On Sunday we headed out to Hill Town so that this guy could cook a most delicious Sunday roast-

Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;

Afternoons with this crew are so easy and so, so good. We'll take a thousand more, please.

Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: August &emdash;

Thanks for stopping by to look in on us!


Monday, July 31, 2017

The best of afternoons.

As much as we hated to see Ella Grace and Cohen's Tennessee visit come to an end, the end proved to be the very best part. Last Saturday we loaded up and headed down to Gaga and Pappy's house. The rest of our Pierces had made it down from Ohio, to retrieve their sweet kiddos, and we could not wait to see their faces. My mom and dad's house, full of grandkids, is just the best.

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

Even though Tennessee had what seemed liked record breaking temperatures last weekend, we couldn't keep ourselves inside for long. We popped over to my parents' neighbor's house. Who can resist baby goats? Not us, apparently.

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

Dennis and Patsy have such a beautiful property. They have lived there for 3 years but it looks like they could have been there for 30- and I mean that in the best kind of way. There were so many areas to explore. I think all of us enjoyed every second.

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

Everybody was starting to get hungry (both for dinner and a break from the heat) so we headed back to Pappy and Gaga's to stuff ourselves silly at lunch. Then straight back outside for more playtime and then to Pappy's pond to feed the fish.

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

And of course it's not an official family get-together unless someone is tortured for a group photo.

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

This is probably a more realistic capture of the process, however-

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

That day was the kind of day that goes by way too fast! We miss our Ohio people so much and were so happy see all their faces and to get some time to visit and play. What a happy and wonderful afternoon!


Thursday, July 13, 2017

Full.

While we have definitely had our share of slow summer days, this week we have had a full schedule. And a full house! We had two of the most long-awaited visitors show up at our house on Monday morning. We hadn't seen them since February, and man have they changed since then. But some things thankfully haven't changed one bit.

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

Charlie was only 10 months old the last time she saw Ella Grace and Cohen so she was a little cautious at first. But that didn't last long.

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

She never has any hesitation when it comes to her Pappy, though. Watching these two interact is just one of the best things I've ever seen.

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

Is was so great to have a few days with EG & Co, to catch up with them and get to know them better. Cohen is still a rough & tumble lego-loving fellow, just a little bit bigger. And boy can that kid eat! Ella Grace seems so grown now. I can see her as a teenager. How crazy! But I love that she's still not too big to play. Getting to watch all those kids play together was wonderful and long overdue. We spent the days swimming, and jumping, 4-wheeler riding, and (as usual) some of the group eating as much cheese as they put on their pizzas, ha.

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

As of yesterday we were back down to two kiddos in this house. Henry nearly cried when we dropped Cohen off with his cousins from the other side of the family. He misses his buddy. Henry loves his friends big & loves nothing more than time with them. Lately he's really been taking this one under his wing more often. I think he loves her big too.

Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: July &emdash;

Thanks for checking in!

Friday, June 23, 2017

Summer mode.

As always is the case during this time of the year, we are in full-out summer mode at the Zuill house. Days are filled with grass mowing, convertible driving, cucumber picking (and pickle making), popsicle eating, & pool splashing. In spite of all of this, as predicted, I have already started to hear "I'm bored, there's nothing to do!". While we do sometimes (literally) jump in for the sake of child entertainment-

Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;

-our favorite is when Henry comes up with his own ideas. And when his sister is entertained in the process, oh happy day!

Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;

Sometimes the simplest things will keep them busy just long enough for Mr. Zuill and I to sit on the porch and observe.

Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;

Summer nights are just beautiful this time of year. Our backyard (and especially the neighbor's hay field) twinkle with lightning bugs every evening. Henry is fascinated- so he wasn't terribly upset when I put an insect collecting kit in the shopping cart at Target last week. He's been on several excursions to find little subjects to examine inside the jar with the magnifier lens (so cool, by the way!). One night after we got Charlie to sleep, Henry and I went out into the back yard to explore. I loved watching him. He was so careful and gentle. Especially with his favorites-

Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;

As far as summer entertainment goes, having great friends nearby to visit with doesn't hurt either!

Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;
Angela Zuill Photography: June &emdash;

This morning I was looking at our calendar for the next month, and was so happy to see that there are only a handful of days that have appointments or work obligations. Looks like it's summer mode for a while! Thanks for checking in!