June 3, 2011

The Official-Unofficial-Kick off to Summer

Every once in a while we like to take an unplugged family retreat weekend.  No electronics, no going anywhere (except to worship) no visitors, no phones and only work we deem FUN!  We were much in need of one and with the holiday and Pa off for an extra day, last weekend was declared, "IT".  The girls and I usually prepare a lot of easy to fix meals ahead of time so that we don't have to spend  alot time in the kitchen. 

Brianna putting the final touches on her strawberry-lemonade merengue pie.
Planning the menu is fun for everyone, of course, and the fellows have been known to bribe their way into our meetings.  Pa usually does most of the cooking pool side on the grill and with the arrival of his new grill he was thrilled to accomodate.

The menu this weekend included chicago dogs
 steamed crabs
Eggs Benedict with fresh picked berries
 corn on the cob
 sweet cherries
baked beans, ribs... all served al fresco, making it extra delicious
The weekend started with a drive to our favorite farm to pick strawberries on Friday morning.
It was quite hot, so by the time we got home we all ready for a dip in the pool
and our first batch of home made ice cream for the summer.
We actually broke the rules a little and agreed to babysit for a friend of ours.  However, everyone has so much fun with baby H and practicing for when Winnie comes, that it hardly seemed like an interruption.  Brianna was excited to remember how to change a diaper. 

Before it got too hot on Saturday, we worked in the gardens.  Sam was delighted to harvest his first crop, which happened to be radishes.
 And everyone was excited to harvest the first of our own strawberries.  We started with all new plants this year so we were surprised to get so many.
 Sunday morning, Allen's parents joined us for worship and a fellowship picnic afterward.
Memorial Day weekend not only marks the opening of the pool but also the return of family happy hour.  Emma made these strawberry drinks
 and shrimp cocktail.
Aedan was all about getting into laid back summer mode!
 Undoubtedly, there was lots of pool time and a really violent water balloon battle.  Which were both ideal since the temperatures were blazing!
 There are always a few jobs to be done, but with everyone pitching in, it hardly seems like work.
 Even Elisabeth found a way to help out.
If you've never taken the time to make a vacation for your family right at home, you are surely missing out!  Give it a try and let me know how much you love every minute of it.




  1. It looks like y'all had a wonderful weekend! I like your idea to have a family retreat weekend with no electronics, no going anywhere (except to worship), no visitors, no phones, and only fun work. That sounds like a really neat idea, and I'd like to try it myself some time.

    Ooh, the return of happy hour! Yes, that's definitely something to love about summer. :)

    Blessings on your day!
    Elizabeth Rose

  2. I always enjoy your blog!! It's like I'm there enjoying things with you :) Love the pictures!! Have an awesome summer!! Blessings, Amy

  3. What a great idea to take some unplugged time! Looks like you shared some delicious food as well!