Monthly Archives: September 2013

Family Dinner

After spending nearly a month in Minnesota, we decided that couldn’t possibly be enough time and after receiving the news that baby Ellery had arrived early, we booked a last minute Labor Day trip back to meet her.

It’s funny how a planned trip and a spontaneous trip feel so much different.  When we plan a trip, I spend the entire month or two before in an excited planning mode, anxious to make the most of every moment we’re home.  I always overbook and end up feeling tugged in a million directions.

The spontaneous Labor Day trip felt indulgent and without any pressure.  No plans were made and it just worked out perfectly that my Grandpa was back from Arizona and everyone was able to gather at my parents house for a family dinner.
1231519_10151548001221991_2077706625_nThere’s just no place like home.

18 Kinkade’s, Fettings and Hendrickson’s wined and dined in the front yard on a beautiful late summer night.  My dad grilled up loads of salmon and steak, while my mom prepared corn and potato salad.  Perfect outdoor meal if you ask me.

Family-15Family-17Family-14 It may seem like we get back to Minnesota quite a bit, and we do, but nights like this are rare.  It had been well over a year since my entire immediate family (all brothers and sisters at the same time) were together at home.  I also hadn’t seen several of my cousins or my Aunt and Uncle since our wedding nearly two years ago.  Family-16 Family-1Family-2Being that everyone was home, I knew photos were unavoidable.  : )

My well trained and handsome husband posing for me while I got the light right for our group photos.  I’m only posting a few because we all want to use the results as Holiday cards.
Family-10Family-7 We are short one cousin, but otherwise here is Grandpa Pete with all his grandkids!  The cousin missing is another boy…can you tell why I waited so long for Livi?  I was totally outnumbered!Family-18Nights like this are what tug so hard at my heartstrings when I’m back in Denver.  I just have to remind myself that it wouldn’t always be like this, and that if we book enough trips home, the stars usually align to make it happen.

It was a good night.

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Small Town Scenes

There’s just something about Minnesota.

For me anyway.

I can never quite pinpoint it either, but I love the landscape.  From the dense tree filled Minneapolis – St. Paul residential areas, to the winding, rolling blues and greens of the lakes, there’s just something special about it.  It calms me.  It makes me feel like myself.  I can’t explain it.

Although maybe those places, the lakes and the city, make sense to people.  The Twin Cites are obviously beautiful (in the summer at least) and the lakes…what’s not to love?  I think where I truly stump people is when I talk about my love of where I grew up.  Specifically the roads branching off to the East and South of my hometown.

It doesn’t get any flatter.  It doesn’t get much more desolate.  But I also don’t think it gets much more beautiful.

Anytime I’m in my car driving those roads I dream about trying to capture what it is about the landscape that pulls me in.  I didn’t even try during my last trip home (don’t have the right equipment…yet) but I did stop here and there to snap some small town shots.

I didn’t make it to Ada because my bargaining tools ran out with my little sister.

Next time.

 

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Blake

A few weeks ago, while I was still on my extended Minnesota vacation, Jon and I went to my parents house for a large family dinner.  Upon arrival my adorable Aunt Angie cornered me in the kitchen and asked me to perform the task I believed to be my worst nightmare.

“Ali, will you please take some quick senior photos of Blake?”

Panic attack.

I had NEVER taken senior photos before and we had a very limited amount of light left in the evening.  I agreed to give it a shot and am relieved to say it wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought it would be.

Quite the opposite actually.

It was SO NICE to be able to direct a near adult rather than the rambunctious and uninterested toddlers I usually try to wrangle.  I’m also thrilled that Angie pushed me to do it because otherwise I never would have tried.  I’m looking forward to doing it again!

I wish we would have had more time before the sun vanished, but considering my nerves going in I’m very happy with them.

Angie gave me approval to post several of my favorites here.

BlakeFetting-8Blake.  Thank you for being such a good sport and for being a natural.  It made my job much easier. : )

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