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“Family”

For Father's Day, we rode our bikes to church. And that rolled into a whole summer of riding bikes to church just about every Sunday. It's been quite the adventure with it's ups and downs. The first Sunday we made it to church without anyone yelling, crying, complaining, whining, etc felt like a huge accomplishment. Riding bikes to church has given our kids a fun identity. Plus it's just plain wholesome. It's not convenient. I change my shoes and put on a skirt when we get to church, it takes more time to get to church and home again. But overall it's been worth it. The weather is starting to change and maybe we only had a handful of Sundays left before we drive to church in a car. 

This morning, I stayed home from church (still nursing that flu) with Holly (who threw up twice yesterday). Greta convinced Conor to pull her on the tag-along bike and of course, Maeve rides in style on the handlebars. I loved this little image of 3 of my people. Conor's pretty dedicated!

I did not see enough of my parents this summer. Fortunately they were able to swing down for a quick 22 hour visit this past weekend. It was so much fun and felt so happy! I loved having them here and only wish for more time. I'm so grateful they were able to sneak down for a visit. 

Maeve loves dogs so it was extra fun for her to have my parent's dog in the house for a day. I feel like I just basked in my parents love the entire time they were here. It was lovely. 

One thing we never got to this summer was riding the Hiawatha Trail. We snuck it in this last Friday on the last weekend it's open. It was really fun, however, I definitely recommend finding the cushiest ride possible because it's bumpy. My bike has no shocks and pretty narrow tires. By the end of it, my head and neck felt like I had spent the day at an amusement park. So now I know... Otherwise, the views were incredible and the weather was perfection. It was a fun trip! Greta struggled a little towards the end. Maeve did great the whole time in her seat. She loves the bike!

This is kind of a big deal... this past week I became a US citizen! Pretty exciting. The process was really quick (less than 4 months start to finish!!). I submitted my paperwork, was fingerprinted, had my interview and civics test and then the last step is to take the Oath of Allegiance. I have begun filling the paperwork out a few times over the years, and now felt right to finally do it.

But, I will tell you how grateful I am that it was so easy for me to first get permanent residence status and then to become a US citizen. I am so privileged to live in North America. My experience immigrating definitely has an influence on my political views and I'm so excited to vote! Overall, I feel immense gratitude that there are so many paths in life that I've been able to choose. It's incredible.

To celebrate, I of course threw myself a party where everyone brought an apple pie! It was so fun and so low key and I feel so grateful so many people showed up to celebrate with me. I made a gluten-free salted caramel tart and it was so good!

It's so infrequent that I do something creative just for the hey of it. I need more of that in my life. This past Sunday, I took some portraits of my daughters. It's no easy exercise and I really try hard not to be monster mom when I'm taking pics of my kids. Totally not my strength to be cool and fun. But, I got them making funny faces and all sorts of expressions and in between those, I captured some sweet pictures of them. Obviously the baby was the hardest to take pictures of. She found a button and insisted on putting it in her mouth. Oh man... 

The days are long but the years are short. 

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