We had the best time this weekend with J’s cousins and aunt and uncle! His cousin Andy rented a lake house on Lake Texoma, and I mean right on the lake. J’s Aunt and Uncle, Andy and his wife Ann Marie, cousin Lindsay, and cousin Erika and her husband Nathan with their kids (Austin and Addie), were all there when we arrived. We had a private little cove with the water just a few feet away from the house. The kids were in the water pretty much the entire time. We rented a power boat for Saturday and the kids (and adults) went tubing. Lola had a blast! She was much braver then me, I didn’t go out on the tube..hah! She and her cousin Austin (he is the 7 years old), were the first to go out with J. I haven’t laughed so hard in quite awhile! They were flying around the lake and she was so excited. When she’d get nervous we’d stop and pull her in, then someone else would take her spot on the tube. Xi loved going fast on the boat, she got to go with the men to pick it up and felt extra special as they let her sit up front and be the captain!

Sunday we rented a large pontoon boat and everyone got in and went for a picnic on a beach across the lake. It was so easy and relaxing just swimming, eating, playing and just being.

The flow at the house was so incredible. Everyone was smiling and laughing pretty much the entire time. We had more food than we knew what to do with and routines just clicked with everyone. No one looked at the clocks…we got up when we wanted to, went to bed when we wanted to, ate when we were hungry and just had a great time with everyone. The view from the house was so relaxing. The older kids could be down in their life jackets, swimming in the cove while we sat on the back deck just drinking in the calmness along with a glass of wine. I really needed a weekend like this. I honestly haven’t felt that laid back and relaxed in a very long time.

J’s cousins are amazing. I have the best time with them. Everyone is so kind and happy and the conversations just flow. J’s Aunt Marlene and Uncle Rich are really good people and very easy to be around. J’s always talked about the fun he had growing up and spending summer vacations with his cousins, and I can see why! The girls both experienced some incredible adventures and laughed pretty much constantly. Lola was happy for the independence with Austin. Xi was thrilled to be in the water, on the boat and at the beach. J got to get out and ski, tube and just be with his family. And I felt so warm and grateful to be so accepted and loved so unconditionally. Every aspect of my world they consider part of their’s and that’s such a great feeling. It made me feel warm and happy with how interested they are in what Jonathon is doing and they reminded me that he’s always welcome as they consider him family as well. We can’t wait to spend more time with them. The plan is next July as another of J’s cousins is getting married, so we won’t be missing that wedding!! That is in Duluth so a completely new adventure for us.

I’ll stop rambling now and just let the pictures tell the story. Hope your weekend was everything you wanted it to be!!!

Lola getting into the groove of the tube. She was having a blast.

Getting ready to get out into open water. The order of people: Lola, J and Austin

The kids getting ready for the big ride.

This little dragonfly loved Ann Marie’s hat!

Ahoy Captain Xi!

Here comes the power boat
The back of the house where we spent alot of time

J and Xi fishing off the dock

The dock view from the back deck
This handsome young man is Erika’s and Nathan’s son, Austin. (Erika is J’s cousin)

Andy and J on the pontoon.

The girls not having any fun…haha! This was on the pontoon.

Cool staircase in the house.

Spent alot of time just chilling under this umbrella.

Erika’s husband, Nathan with Xi and Lola. Their faces pretty much sum up the entire 4 day weekend.

Nathan let Lola drive the powerboat for a bit.

J, Austin and Nathan. Look at their feet!

J, Austin and Andy (J and Andy are like brothers…super close)

Lola’s first real ride. They were going fast!
The kids building sand castles.

The lovely and expecting, Ann Marie. She is just glowing!

J’s Aunt Marlene, cousin Lindsay, cousin Erika and Austin (I know, hard to see anyone..hah!)

Erika’s husband Nathan, Uncle Rich and little Addie.

I’m pretty sure Lola wasn’t having any fun…hah!
The kids’ sculptures.

Pretty much where Lola spent most of her time, in the water.

Xi loved the beach and the way the sand felt and looked.

Uncle Rich and J.

Sand art ala’ Xi.

More tubing, this time behind the pontoon boat. Lola, J and Austin.

Xi and me.

Xi just chillin’ on the boat. She really had a great time with the boats.

Lindsey with Addie and Lola.

No clue as to what this flower is, but I thought it was pretty!

I really loved the colors of this umbrella.

Austin and Lola swimming around the cove.