We kicked of the 4th weekend with cottage breakfast pancake art.
Theo couldn't wait to get in the water, but his cousins beat him to it.
Grandpa brought up the wood chipper that used to be in our shed at the duplex. He got it sharpened and working order, but it doesn't work well. Oh, well. We tried.
It's basically just loud. I was surprised by how few wood chips come out.
Harvey and Nolan started to make a frog habitat. I wondered aloud why the wetland on either side of us wasn't good enough.
This would end up being one of our more relaxed 4th of July weekends.
It was time for our first family meal.
Blake made risotto.
More presents for Meadow! A new fish tank from Chelsea. Looks like she'll be getting a new pet.
It was our day for meals. The giant Bundt breakfast sandwich is always an easy meal for the crowd. The kids don't like it as much as the adults. For the kids and adults I made a giant blueberry muffin bundt.
I'm not sure what was better: the bundt cake or bundt breakfast sandwich.
Meadow got an Encanto outfit from G.G. and Grandpa.
It fits her so perfectly.
Chelsea gave us Harvey's old training wheels. Theo tried riding again and still gave up after a few minutes.
Everyone was busy doing something or nothing. So I decided to swing the kids.
Chelsea brought 4th of July poppers. Everyone's included a crown and a little toy.
Once I had my hammock out, I read the rest of the weekend. Loved my first Sam Campbell read.
Oh, yeah, it was pizza night. All the kiddos let me know how much they loved my pizza, which meant a lot. These 4th of July meals are a lot of work, but it's worth it.
On Memorial Weekend I asked if everyone still liked pizza and everyone agreed it was great.
Chelsea and I came up with the idea this year to have everyone tie dye a shirt to wear to the parade. Luckily we have a sister who knows all about dyeing fabrics.
While waiting for pizzas everyone took a turn at making their shirt.
I always cut up too many toppings. Whoops.
Blake spent a long time on his.
This year we had no mosquitos.
I also made a strawberry streusel pizza.
Good job, Brooke.
Then Brooke and I made our shirts.
We were the last ones.
On the 3rd we drove 45 minutes west to meet up with our old Minneapolis neighbors. Their cabin was so charming.
It was pretty perfect. Also kind of funny that our former neighbors had a cabin near ours.
Their cabin is on the west side of this map of Oneida County while we're barely on the east end.
They had a lot of land and were excited to show us around.
Apparently Fisk is an expert noodler.
We never see beavers near us.
Their land has its own hiking trails thanks to Michelle. They actually share the cabin with a bunch of Andy's extended family, but they do much of its upkeep.
Then we all went swimming. Their land is right next to a sandbar! We found out that it can be a blessing and curse. Lots of folks want to tie up to their land or even their dock!
I was a little jealous of how quiet their lake was on a holiday weekend.
Theo used one of their shark inflatables and I've never seen Theo spend so much time in the water. He was just happily kicking his way around the other kids. I think we may need to get one.
We'll have to do this again. Loved spending the day with our old neighbors.
They invited us to stay for dinner but we had to get back for Dan's fish boil. Next time we'll have to have them over.
Dan was back with his classic shrimp boil.
We made it home just in time.
The pups even got special ice cream.
After leaving our shirts to soak overnight it was time for the big reveal. Theo's turned out awesome.
Everyone's shirts turned out great. Well, mine was just straight up traditional tie dye and Blake's was...let's call in minimalist. The rest were super rad.
Everytime one of us revealed ours everyone would get excited, "Ooooo!"
Soon it was time for the annual 3rd of July nighttime boat parade. This year instead of watching, the pontoon would be joining.
Brooke, Dan and I took the fishing boat since there wasn't enough room.
We left early and apparently missed a fireworks display.
It's not Cracker Jacks and Cedar Crest Ice Cream, but the Three Lakes 4th of July is tradition, even for me.
I went with dad at midnight to put out the chairs. If you get there before midnight you have to wait by your chairs. It was actually fun to watch the other people doing it too. At 11:45 the cop came by on his loudspeaker saying, "Happy Treason day you can all go home."
What a weird joke. Total Trumper.
Blake's shirt was honestly cool in it's own right.
It's just so funny because he spent so much time on it.
Scott was embarrassed that we are those people now with our matching shirts.
Blake later admitted he was as well.
These guys are going to be in the Rose Bowl next year.
They were a group of marching bands from throughout the Northwoods.
All the kids got in on the action. Even big kids like G.G.
Always love the Shriners.
I love that we get this picture every year.
I always want to hoot and holler for the chair ladies.
While everyone else shopped the book sale, Theo and I explored outside.
We started out at the park and there was a whole lotta nothing going on there. We thought we'd try the book sale this time.
On the way back we checked out the new Buoy's General Store on Big Stone Lake. It'll be nice to have a place to pick up snacks, groceries and beer closer to the cottage.
There was still some empty shelves, will be nice to see when it's full.
Ruthie never likes when Blake is too far from her.
It's never this quiet on the 4th. Blake suggested we do our annual swim across the lake.
I guess a dreary day is the perfect time to swim across a lake? First I had to paddle boat them across.
Almost there. Next year we'll have to time them.
Blake always ends up way ahead of me. I am curious how long it takes.
It rained for most of the day. We all assumed the fireworks were cancelled. We later found out they weren't. Oops.
We had fun playing Tenzi instead.
Romeneskos! I kid. At least they know how to have fun.
Every time we laughed hard Scott would roll his eyes.
I was cleaning up around the lake when I spotted a snake. Dad thought he belonged in the woods.
Well, he was making sure Gail wouldn't yell at him when she ran into it another weekend. Happy 4th!