On July 3rd, Natalie and Noah invited us up to watch the Wauconda fireworks with the Weidner family. Since Megan had taken a nap that afternoon, I decided that they would enjoy staying up late and getting more playtime with their cousins. Mom had bought glow wands for each kid, and they were a big hit. In the first photo, you can see Megan giving someone the beginning of her attitude face, and in the second photo, she is trying to use her glow wand to freeze me by turning me into an ice sculpture.
It was a little cool, maybe 66 degrees, but the girls were still comfortable in their sundresses. Here they are touching their glow wands together to get magical freezing powers.
Becky had some regular glow bracelets that she shared with the girls; they had fun making them into earrings and glasses as well as bracelets. Amelia sat down in Noah's chair for a minute, and Natalie and Noah decided they should sit on top of her.
The Wauconda fireworks were held on the other side of the lake near Becky and Brian's house, so we had a fantastic view from the beach that's only two blocks from their house. When it started getting dark, I suggested that we take shadow pictures against the remnants of the sunset. The kids thought this was great fun - they would do a funny pose or jump, I would take a photo, and then they would run over to look at the photo on the camera. It was very very difficult to get them to jump all at the same time.
Here's Amelia jumping - I love her ponytail up in the air!
Amelia and Noah were trying to make a cannonball when they jumped, and Noah was specifically trying to make it look like he had no head. I think Natalie had given up at this point because she was cold.
And here's a great jump from Natalie:
And a six armed monster:
On the morning of the 4th of July, Amelia and Megan made our traditional chocolate cookie and Cool Whip 4th of July cake. They placed the cookies, Amelia spread the Cool Whip on the layers, and I had to help with icing the sides. They both enjoyed decorating the top with raspberries, blueberries and flags the best. In the second photo they are smelling the cake.
The kids all walked up to the Glenview parade, but I did not get to go because Nathaniel needed a nap. Megan ended up coming home early with Ben because she was tired of the parade and had a tantrum over not getting a piece of candy, or something ridiculous like that. You'll have to check out Becky's blog for parade photos.
The girls all still fit in their 4th of July dresses from last summer, so I wanted to get a cousin photo to see how much they had grown up. They were having a LOT of fun with their blowy birthday things, so I worked with that.
We had a picnic lunch outside with the Beslers. Mrs. Besler volunteered to hold Nathaniel while I was eating lunch, which was so fantastic! He was so comfortable with her that he almost fell asleep!
And while we weren't busy with all the aforementioned activities, we had a lot of fun around the house with Grandma and Grandpa. The girls got to pick raspberries THREE TIMES, and Amelia was so proud that she didn't eat them all while she was picking this time. She picked an entire bowlful, and brought them in to show me.
Then I walked into the kitchen and saw this:
Yup, she was stealthily eating them from the bowl she had brought inside. I think she and Megan ended up eating almost all the raspberries in this bowl before anyone else got any. They sure love raspberries!
Megan and Grandpa played a few games of Spot It. Megan is always delighted when she spots her match before Grandpa! I think Grandpa wasn't playing at full strength when he played just against Megan. But when Megan and Amelia team up to play against Grandpa, there's pretty much no beating them. In fact, they usually start feeling sorry for Grandpa's piddly little stack of cards and they start giving him hints so he can catch up. But not too much, because they still want to win. It is so fun to watch. Next time I'll try to get a video of Megan's cackling laughter.
Mom also got out the paperdolls that we used to play with at Grandma Sylvester's house, and Amelia enjoyed making new clothes for them. I drew the dresses, and Amelia colored them in. The ruffly rainbow striped dress on the left side is Amelia's creation; it is a wedding dress with a veil. The pink dress on the right is one of Aunt Nole's creation from about 60 years ago.
Because the girls were up a fair amount at night due to storms, I made Megan take a nap most days. I knew Amelia wouldn't sleep, but I made her do quiet reading time in Grandma's room. She thought it was really fun that Grandma had quiet rest time with her. One time, Grandma even fell asleep! Amelia is reading a Boxcar Children book in this photo; she is really into the Boxcar Children series now.
Amelia and Grandma enjoyed making a sand castle with Megan's kinetic sand that she got from Noah for her birthday. It is really bizarre stuff, and very fun to play with. It molds so nicely.
And finally, Nathaniel was around during all these activities, but he did take quite a few naps - which was good because he didn't sleep well at night either. The biggest change in him during the week in Glenview was that he figured out that he liked eating solid food! Here he is smiling while eating mushed up peas.