Thursday, June 1, 2017

Summer '17 kickoff!

Summer is [unofficially} upon us!! Yes, I know that technically the first day of summer isn't until later in June, but we're kicking off the season with our annual family camp out. The five of us technically didn't camp in the sleeping outdoors sense of the word, but we spent a good chunk of the weekend enjoying the outdoor festivities.

The girls were unbelievably stoked to pet a dog. And that's when I realized they hardly ever see them because we don't have any pets. Easy entertainment. This could have made their day in itself.

This is the sixth (I think?) year the family has been getting together for a camping weekend. The first two years I stayed in a tent with the whole gang, but after we got rained out year two (also being the only ones that year NOT in a camper), and then having littles since, the Rauches stayed inside the house. This year we were blessed with beautiful weather pretty much the whole weekend, so we spent almost all of our time outside. 

A few of my extended family members own horses, so they bring them out to the camp site to offer rides to the kiddos. Celine is usually afraid of, well, most things, so when she asked for a ride I was pretty taken aback. We started slow and worked out away in... petting his neck, petting his nose, and given she was still interested, we got her onto the saddle.

Aaaaaaand that's as far as we got. This is way more than she was willing to do last year though, so here's to 2018! I'm still so proud she made it that far. She might be held back sometimes by her nerves, but she is becoming braver and braver every day.

Monica seemed ready to give it a shot, with her fearlessness causing me a little worry... I didn't totally trust her to sit still. She pet the horse, and we set her on the saddle long enough to snap this sweet picture:

...but as soon as she realized I was holding her stuffed animals for her, she was ready to be done. I wouldn't be surprised if she's ready for a ride next year too.

Clive was mostly held the whole weekend and he was loving playing the role of baby hot potato. He was pretty quiet most of the time and seemed to just be taking everything in,, but every time I put him down to change him he started chatting away, as if to tell me everything he saw. I can't get enough of our little dude.

That wasn't the end of the milestones for our big girl... Celine got her very own bicycle. We only took her around on the grass for now, but she absolutely loves that thing. And I'm all googley-eyed over her on it, especially with the basket. I want one in my size. She's hell bent on pedaling backwards, but we'll get there.

And of course, if big sister gets a turn, little sister must too. Oddly enough, Monica also kept her feet pushing back on the brakes. Maybe it's a Rauch kid thing? I'll look into it. In the meantime, I need to find bikes/trikes/trailers for the rest of us.

The weekend wrapped up with A Lazy Stroll, a fundraiser to find a cure for ALS. My uncle was diagnosed a few years ago, so this cause has a very particular importance to my family. 
To hear his story, watch this.

The walk was around the same time as naps and the girls were pretty tapped out from the weekend, so this is the only picture I managed to take.
All in all we had a wonderful weekend and we're ready to make the most of our summer. We've got a whole lot of fun to come, so thanks for following along!

What are your plans for the summer? Let me know in the comments!


  1. What fun to be able to get together with so much family for a special weekend and create such awesome memories! I counted eighty-six for our total number of family members at the camp this year. Cousins abound!

    1. That's crazy! It was so much fun having everyone together :)