Huckleberry Finn and Friends

I took these photos when my sister was here last week. We just let the kids play in the water while we snapped away. Not a lot of staging or posing, just playing. If we let them, kids will find a game in flowers and rocks and a bucket. We tend to complicate things with toys and stuff. 
Something occurred to me while I edited these photos…simplicity is almost always better than the alternative. When we overbook, our kids are usually crabby and we’re usually stressed out. When we over-decorate, our homes look like we’re trying too hard…or we’re hoarders.  When we over-think meal planning and cleaning and taking care of our homes, usually one area looks great while the rest of our house looks like a bomb went off.  We can be creatures of overdoing a lot.

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Things seem a lot happier when we schedule less, make simple meals, do a little light cleaning every day, have a plan but not an elaborate plan…simple.  Simple wins.  Our kids notice. Our husbands notice.

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I’m attempting to embrace simplicity even more this summer. We are not generally “over-do-it” parents and over scheduling our kids, but we’re taking it even to the next level of simple. Each kid has chosen one camp (and we are having Noah go to church camp as well…so I guess that’s two things for him). They are signed up for those and we’re not planning on adding anything else. Although last summer was full of trips to the beach and we had so much fun, I’m not sure we’re going to make it there at all this summer. Maybe…possibly a weekend away, but our guests that are coming are making it seem like this baby/moving-filled summer also includes vacations. 
This summer we’re going to read books and play with squirt guns…fun things that don’t require getting in the car, disrupting baby’s nap, and being there at a certain time.

Do you remember fun times with your family as a kid? A lot of the very best memories are made on a whim. Unplanned. Simple.  I remember dancing around the dining room to Gloria Estefan’s Congo with my family. We’re all laughing hysterically. You couldn’t have planned that if you’d have wanted to. Impromptu dart gun wars and lemonade stands are really all that summer needs.  And that’s what kids remember anyway.  You know all that stressing we did about what to get our kids for Christmas just a few months ago? Do they even remember what they got? Let’s go with simple this summer. 

We have this week of school left and we’re done for the summer. My kids are ready for the pool and neighbor friends all day long. I am too. Scraping off all the extra stuff will make this summer already full of moving obligations bearable. We are ready, Summer.


  1. I am right there with you about keeping it simple. Am already enjoying these summer days!!

    And these pictures…wow! I loved every one. Your little girl in that hat is just too adorable! =)

  2. Good. So good! Sure, I'm single and have no kids…but I keep busy! I'm thinking it's time for me to slow down, enjoy what I have, and live in the here and now. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. yes yes and more yeses
    you hit the nail on the head
    just where my heart is right
    i still have a long way to go but girl you got a little tribe
    it is a GOOD thing what i am hearing you say!!

  4. Holy cow! Where is this paradise?! I would stay in that spot all summer long. Your children are adorable. I wonder if my son would like Huck Finn?? I'm with you…simple is a good thing.

  5. I'm with you!
    We make our summer list, but it doesn't "hang" over our heads…
    we ONLY put things on there that we know we can do…
    simple and easy and CHEAP. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I love this photo shoot you had with the kids…that hat on your girl is todiefor. adorable.

    precious kiddos. do they even argue?

  6. Your photos are priceless. So sweet. I like your philosophy ~ simplicity is truly the best.
    Wishing you and your family the most amazing simple summer.

  7. Oh my goodness! Those pictures! Absolutely priceless!

    And you and I have the same brain. Really we do. Josh and I are embracing the same kind of summer. Focusing more on family time.

    And yes, I agree that you guys need to have a simple summer, BUT, if you feel the need to travel across country to good ol' Montana, . . .

    Love you to pieces!

    Oh, and when you do come to MT, I think you need to do a photo shoot with my girls. You are SO GOOD!!

  8. You are so right, simple is definitely best! Also, i absolutely adore these pictures, they are just perfect!

  9. I crave simple! These images are a sign that kids need simple, good old-fashioned activities, books, nature, companionship! Love it. Fabulous photographs!

  10. How cute is this bunch, remember when we were young all we needed was the outdoors in for lunch and back out again, awe to be young again. here's to a great last week of school.
    Happy Tuesday!

  11. I just heard a Gloria Estefan song on the radio the other day and thought of our "dance" classes! Such good memories! I totally agree with keeping things simple. So much less stress on everyone! Happy Summer!!

  12. beautifully captured. beautifully said. i'm beautifully inspired to do the same. please tell me you will be printing these huckleberry finn treasures to hang in your new home!

  13. love this attitude! I am embracing more "simple" too! I envision many days that look like this in my future. You are so correct, we do tend to over-plan and over-think when our kids would be happy with simple, if we only let them experience that every once in a while. What cute pics! Have a blessed day!

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