Rob's sister and her family graciously welcome us into their river home and we are so thankful for their hospitality and for a chance to spend a week playing and relaxing with family. This year was no exception and as summer winds down, looking back over these pictures makes me ready to head back there as soon as possible.
I'll start off with this lovely view of my sister and brother in law's home from down at the water. This is the back of their house and in the foreground is our sweet golden lab, Meg. Yes, she made the trip. We didn't want her to miss out on all of the fun.
Another shot of Lainey walking up to the house. And I'm telling you, after a year of living in suburban sprawl with very little natural beauty, the sight of these gorgeous trees was balm for my soul.
A beautiful shot of the dock and the water.
We spent most of the week out in the water naturally.
Will riding the tube with his cousin, Jameson.
Cousin Max got his license to dive a jet ski and he was so incredibly wonderful about taking his younger cousins out for rides. Everyone needs a cousin, Max. I really mean that. He is such a great kid.
And Lainey loved being out on the water with her Daddy. She begged to go out every chance she could.
Bennett riding on the tube with Sophie and Max.
Relaxing on the boat.
A trip to the berry farm is a tradition. The kids pick blackberries that Aunt Laura uses later to make her famous cobbler.
Cousins truly are the best. I am so thankful that my kids have such great ones.
Speaking of cousins, this year the four in the middle (ages 6-9) formed their very own band. They named themselves "The Chasers" and the whole house enjoyed highly entertaining performances. Autographs were even given out after the show.
A great shot of the boys with their labs.
Here I am welcoming Lainey back after she had taken a long ride on the jet ski. I was so proud of my little daredevil.
I couldn't believe it, but there was my 2 year old being pulled on the tube by a boat. She kept yelling at Uncle Hazen to go faster.
A gorgeous shot Rob took one evening at sunset. Oh, how I love this girl.
And I love this old girl too.
Just walking down the beach.... enjoying the summer sun.
These two are growing closer and closer every year as they get older. I am so thankful Will has such an awesome cousin so close in age.
And I am so thankful for these sweet girls and how much they love each other. They are absolutely inseparable whenever we get together.
And there is Lainey riding a jet ski. Watch out world, here she comes.
We celebrated Will's 6th birthday as I blogged about in the post below while we were there, but we also celebrated Aunt Laura's birthday and me and Rob's 10th (!!!) anniversary.
Lainey hung in there like a champ, but there were definitely times on the trip when she reminded us that she was 2.
And this is usually how her cousins reacted when she went into tantrum mode.
I sure do adore all of these kids. And this shot.
One of my favorite things that we did all week was when we took the boat out to Shark Tooth island. I am sure that is not the proper name for the island, but it is the one we gave it nonetheless. We took a fairly long ride out on the boat...
... and then we swam out to this little strip of land that had shark's teeth all along the water's edge. We spent a long time just walking up and down the beach and collecting teeth.
And then we took the boat back to a dockside restaurant and had the best lunch while the kids ran around and played in the sand. It was such a great day.
Will got this really coo gadget for his birthday that lets you blow up 100 water balloons at once. We decided to face off kids against adults. Adults dominated. Of course.
I had absolutely no qualms about pelting my children as hard as I could.
The fight may or may not have ended with Max on the ground in complete denial that he was bested by a bunch of old fogies.
The Webster/Marshall crew also spent a lot of time down by the water fishing. This was probably Will's favorite thing to do all week.
A few more fun water shots.
Our cousin Madeline is in college and had to work this summer but she finally made it down to the river house for the last two days. We were so happy to see cousin Madi!
On the fourth of July we took our yearly family pictures. We didn't get one of the whole group this year but it was raining on and off, burgers were on the grill, people were in and out of the water at various times.... you get what you get. :) And I am glad we got a few good shots of our family.
And here are the Texas Websters. We still call them that even though we live in Texas now too. Hey, they were here first.
And the Marshall family.
The Webster siblings.
And we actually got one of the seven cousins. Miracles do happen.
Madeline had an awesome idea and she ordered these amazing floating lanterns for the night. They looked just like the lanterns from the movie Tangled and were much cooler than fireworks in my opinion.
But of course we shot off fireworks from the point. It wouldn't be a Webster/Marshall 4th of July without them.
What a great week! I mean, really. How fortunate are we that we get to spend a week in a beautiful home on the banks of a river riding boats, swimming in the water, fishing, exploring beaches, riding jet skis, playing games with family, eating great food, watching movies, laughing constantly and catching up with family. I am so grateful for every single person in these pictures and I am so thankful that I get to call them my family. Until next time.