Our big summer trips are done for the season and since we returned from the U.P. earlier this month, we've been enjoying the continued awesome weather closer to home. Outside of not having central air conditioning (by the power of fans we are surviving), it's been what I like to call: relaxation-station! Grilling out with friends, walks to Wilcox Park, biking around Reeds Lake and leisure time on the couch watching the Olympics. Sometimes I feel bad eating snacks on the couch while viewing perfect human specimens at the top of their physical game... but then again, you can't eat a gold medal. 

At the end of July Jeff's sister Stephanie married her long time partner in crime Micheal. The ceremony was held downtown at LaGrave Avenue Christian Reformed Church followed by their reception at Cascade Country Club. The ceremony was a full family affair with everyone playing a part including Jeff's older brother filling the role of pastor, sister in laws as matron of honor and bridesmaids, and Jeff and his younger brother reading scripture during the service. And of course, all of Stephanie's nieces playing the role of flower girl. Stephanie was the last of the Kladder siblings to get hitched which means the crew is now complete! 

We're still taking full advantage of our proximity and membership to Fredrick Meijer Gardens by enjoying another concert and visiting with family in from out of town. Last week Jeff and I joined friends Kevin and Ashley and listened to the sweet tunes of WAR and Los Lonely Boys. It was a solid concert and surprisingly, I knew way more Los Lonely Boys songs than I thought! As always, the venue was awesome, the night was hot and the music was great. 

Two Friday's back we headed out to Muskegon to party with some of Jeff's clients for their annual summer luau. They roasted a full pig and I was in BBQ heaven - I LOVE pulled pork. For me, it's kryptonite. The lawyers all made jokes that they are Jeff's favorite firm and while I can't speak for him, after this party they most certainly are my favorite! And this Friday I get to counter Jeff's work party with one of my own as we join one of my video vendors for their annual shindig on the Thornapple River. Jeff and my 'work-worlds' typically stay separate so it's fun when our paths cross, especially in this type of fun atmosphere. 

Last weekend Saturday we visited John Ball Zoo with family. Nat is still too young to tell us her favorite exhibit but it's likely her favorite non animal part was Grandma feeding her ice cream at the outdoor cafe. Me? I like the bears. Tigers are cool too, but I'm a huge fan of the bears. 

Also on Saturday we partied on Rosewood for our annual Neighborhood Block party. With our street in complete shambles right now (a dirty-muddy mess as they replace the water mains and repave) we set up in a neighbors backyard for some good ole fashion family fun. Our two year anniversary in our house is this coming December, but it feels like we've lived on this street forever. I don't remember what it feels like to live downtown, which makes me a little bit sad - I love downtown. But I'm so glad we landed in the spot we did. We're surrounded by a great neighborhood and community and it feels SO good.