Sunday, June 10, 2012

Sister/Cousin Weekend 2012

My sisters and I decided we should get all the cousins together for a weekend of fun. I grew up with a bunch of cousins close by, and it makes me sad that my boys don't have that luxury. This was one of my solutions to get the cousins together. Hopefully everyone will want to come back next summer for our second annual Sister/Cousin weekend.
From left to right: Kaylie, Sheila, Hope, Sydney, Ashton, Olivia, Spencer, Angie.


Spenc was in love with his cousin Olivia.
My older sister, Hope, rounded up the troops on Thursday morning and they headed to my house. They arrived in time for a lunch of chicken nuggets and fries. Since my boys are quite a bit younger than the rest of the cousins, it did pose a bit of a challenge when planning activities. After lunch we all had to wait around for a bit while Spencer and Ashton napped. Luckily Dave was home, so we could walk to the small park behind our house while we waited.

Sydney read books out loud the whole weekend.
Kaylie and Sheila posing for the camera.
Ashton enjoying some lovin' from Olivia.
Hope and Olivia being monkeys.
Farmer, Farmer, let me down.
Eating popsicles after naps.

After naps we all loaded into my van to make the short trek to Winona. We walked around the small lake for a little exercise before heading to the grocery store to get supplies for the weekend. This wasn't really the most pleasant experience and we decided that next time we won't bring the kids. A lot of money and junk food later, we made a pit stop at Garvin Heights to look over the scenic view of Winona.
Our walk around Lake Winona.
Hanging onto hands.
Catching a ride.
Taking a rest.

Looking down at Winona.

Self portraits.


We had breakfast for supper: homemade Belgium waffles, scrambled eggs and bacon. Mmmm mmm. After supper we finally got to the the project I had teased about earlier in the day. I whipped up the sidewalk chalk paint recipe from our letter S week a few weeks ago and we painted frames I had made out of popsicle sticks. This seemed to be a big hit. I hot glued a group photo I conned my husband into taking earlier in the day to the frame to make a homemade souvenir from our weekend.

Picture frames drying, labeled with our initials.
Finished product.

Syd reading to Spenc before bedtime.
Chillin' on the deck.
Once Spencer and Ashton were in bed for the night, we enjoyed some girl time--spa night! Olivia and Sydney loved the special pampering. We started with a hand scrub. Then their very first face mask while getting mani/pedis. When it was time to wind down for the night, we made up their beds on the couches and turned the TV on and the lights off. Then my sisters and I enjoyed some Mimosas while chatting into the night.
Scrubbing our hands.

Manis and pedis.


Friday morning my boys woke up everyone pretty early. Welcome to my world! Some of us (ahem, Sheila) slept a little longer anyway while we played. The plan was to get Spencer down for a morning nap so we could enjoy the day at the beach. Spencer, however, had other plans. He simply refused to nap. After a while, I just gave up. We lotioned up with a bunch of sun block, got all the gear ready, put our suits on and headed to Winona again to swim in the Mississippi River. First we stopped for a yummy lunch at Taco Bell.
Playing while waiting for everyone to wake up.

It's hard waking up early when you usually sleep until 3pm, right, Sheila?
Eating up all the attention from his family.

I think it is safe to say that swimming was the favorite activity of the whole weekend. Spencer did great even though he didn't have a nap, but Ashton definitely still needed one partway through the day. We snuck away to my van where he fell asleep nursing. It was a nice break from the warm sun for me as well.

Ash preferred sitting on the sand where he could easily splash instead of being stuffed in the turtle.

Spenc took a turn in the turtle.

Snack time.

Snoozing on Mommy in the van.

Digging a hole.
Sydney baked something she was super proud of.

All the cousins at the beach.
Spenc passed out on the ride home.
We came home to find the tent already pitched in the backyard, thanks to my lovely husband. While all the kids showered the beach off their bodies, Dave grilled hamburgers and hotdogs for supper. We played in the backyard for a bit and settled into the night after a long day in the sun. Once Spencer and Ashton were in bed, Dave built a small fire and we roasted marshmallows and ate yummy smores. We made up our beds in the tent and then got the girls situated for bed. The adults enjoyed some drinks on the deck while the kids got a bit rowdy in the tent. They still weren't asleep when my sisters and I finally decided to call it a night. We certainly didn't help the cause when we got a case of the giggles. The ground sure was hard and lumpy and very pokey. What was I thinking sleeping in a tent?! I don't think any of us got much sleep. We woke in the middle of the night to a sleep-crying Sydney who wanted her mommy. Then we were woken later by a text from Dave alerting me my baby needed to eat.
Playing T-ball.

Drawing on window.
Ash gets some lovin' from Aunt Hopey and Aunt She-She.

Spenc watching Cars with Syd before bed.
Getting our beds set up.
Time to roast some marshmallows.

Nina wanting in on the action.

Kaylie could quite possibly be the slowest marshmallow roaster in the entire world!

Sydney and her creation.
Finally passed out.


Saturday morning Spencer, Ashton and I snuck into the tent to wake the sleeping beauties. We packed up our sleeping bags and headed inside for our last breakfast of the first annual sister/cousin weekend. Everyone was a bit crabby from all the activity and lack of sleep, especially my poor little baby, who kept falling asleep in the highchair. Although it was a lot of fun, I think we were all ready to go back to our own homes and own beds.
This little guy got a good night's sleep in his comfy crib!
Wake up!!

So what do you say, ready for next year's sister/cousin weekend? ;)

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