The thunderstorm warning ran across the top of the television and it seemed as though the cookout would be ruined. The rain did come pouring down with lightning and thunder and if it were not for Eddy holding an umbrella and a plate the last burgers would not have successfully come off the grill. Luckily the storm also did not keep his mother and two sisters from attending who had to drive from Cleveland. This was the second time this year that rain nearly ruined a cookout.
Dinner was served inside. The rain had since stopped, but it was better not to chance it by setting up chairs and a table outside. Next Eddy opened his gifts. Starting with a card from Michelle. The big gift from his Mother and I was next. Everyone helped him unwrap it a bit when he sat and stared at the present. It was the laptop for his college classes, which he starts August 29th. As usual the pictures can be found on the pictures page.
The rain came early and held off for the better part of the day, which allowed the cookout to be held completely outside, which is a very good thing. Everyone got exactly what they wanted to eat, which is no small task considering that meant burgers, hotdogs, chicken,
and black bean burgers. The grill went for over three hours. Grandma is not in any of the pictures. The humidity got to her and she had to go back to the air conditioning. There were quite a few people in attendance and Patty was very happy with her birthday. The pictures can be found on the pictures page.
There have been years that the holiday was not spent with family. It was spent working. This year is a very rare year indeed, because it was two whole weeks with family. Patty and Eddy were here. Michelle was working and what not. It is getting very different with the kids being older now. The gifts are smaller. More expensive. There is less to wrap and less to be opened. Maybe next year everyone will be here for Christmas.
We all had fun over the holiday. We played games. Skip-Bo was the favorite for a night. It was interrupted for a bit while we ventured out to (unsuccessfully) find eggnog. They used to sell eggnog everywhere. Then again there used to be convenience stores like Dairy Mart that were not also a gas station. We baked cookies. Chocolate chip. A whole lot of them. Patty and I watched the entire The Hobbit trilogy in a single night. There was much fun to be had. Everyone received gifts and everyone got what they wanted. Eddy asked for movies and games and Patty asked for boots. Michelle has not received her gift yet, but it is not something I can wrap and give to her it is a little more involved than that. She really wants a coat and a new cell phone. We will figure it out I’m sure.
We did not get a white Christmas this year, but that hardly ruined the festive mood. We had Christmas dinner at Becky and Andrews house. It is very busy over there. Five children creates quite the commotion. The triplets are getting so big. They are walking and crawling around now. The meal was fantastic and gifts were exchanged. All the pictures can be found on the pictures page. There are not very many pictures this year.
Eddy had a fantastic birthday cookout and plenty of gifts for his big 17. As usual the cookout included plenty to eat for all the people that showed up. The cookout ran a little late into the evening and so the cake and all the presents had to be brought inside. Eddy blowing out the candles was actually done twice – once outside and once inside. He got plenty of presents this year. He got money in some of the cards. He also got art supplies. There were some gifts from his Mom that were Dragon Ball Z themed, including a comic book. He also got two Zelda video games for his Nintendo 3DS. Only one more year till he is 18 and off to college. The pictures can be found on the pictures page.
Patty’s birthday cookout was a very busy day. There were quite a few people in attendance. Patty, Michelle, and Kristy all showed up together, because Patty is living in Cleveland with her mother now. She is working and going to be starting college there very soon. Eddy and Grandma, of course. Becky and her five children. The triplets are certainly getting bigger every time we see them. They are ten months old. Christi-Anne and her twins and Tim Smith showed up as well. There was plenty of food. It is always better to have too much food than not enough.
There were hotdogs for the little ones, because they are not exactly going to finish a whole burger. Plus they like hotdogs. There were burgers for those that wanted one. BBQ Chicken for people that did not eat red meat. Bean burgers, of some sort, for the person that has decided not to eat meat. Corn on the cob is always a hit as well. Family and friends all showed up over the course of about an hour. The grill was kept going and food was served as each person arrived.
It was a great time for everyone and now the middle child has turned 18. There is only one more 18th birthday left. It is nearing the end of a very long path that got started a very long time ago. Time really flew by. Two kids in college and my youngest is starting his senior year in high school. Next year it is possible I will have three kids in college. Here is to another good school year for everyone. As always all the pictures can be found on the pictures page.
Patty’s High School graduation was held at the Akron Civic Theater. Four years of rigorous education at Archbishop Hoban High School and the journey has come to an end. In attendance was her mother, sister, brother, her Aunt Becky and Uncle Andrew, their five children, her Grandmother, and a family friend. Patty has already been accepted to Notre Dame College and will be attending classes there starting in the fall. It was a monumental event in Patty’s life that we are all glad to have shared. The pictures can be found on the pictures page.
Eddy’s 16th birthday was a little cookout and everyone that could make it was there. He had a great time with his family and there were gifts and an ice cream cake that his Mom had to go quite a bit out of the way to get when the Dairy Queen down the street from the house did not have any on account of someone leaving the freezer door open. More pictures can be found on the pictures page.
Patty’s 17th birthday came in three parts this year. The first part was a picnic with her friends at the Munroe Falls Metro Park. Hot dogs were made, presents were given, and Patty and her friends enjoyed swimming, going on the paddle boats, and had a really nice time there. The second part of the birthday was the cookout, which is exclusively for family.
Her Grandma, both her parents and siblings attended her birthday cookout. There were presents and a cake. This was also a good time. The third part is a day with me, her Dad. We went to Summit Mall and got her gifts at the Bath and Body Works. We enjoyed some StarBucks while we walked around the mall for a bit, before deciding to go to another store. She wanted The Last of Us video game for the PS3. I introduced her to Pad Thai. She enjoyed that more than Chinese, which is what she usually requests for her birthday dinner. We finished up the day by getting the books her and Eddy need for summer reading.
Patty is going to be a high school senior this year and it is going to be a very busy year for everyone. She got to enjoy this birthday, but who knows what the next year will hold. She has to start making choices about college, taking a SAT and/or ACT, and keep up with all of her after school activities. We are hoping that she is chosen for Varsity lacrosse this year, but we will have to see how that works out in the Spring. The rest of the pictures can be found on the pictures page.
The pictures taken encompass what is really the Christmas season. They are from when the decorations were going up around the house, after Thanksgiving. The tradition handed down to me is that the tree and decorations should go up at or right after Thanksgiving. The decorations come down New Years Day. They are from right before we would depart to St. Bernard Catholic Church for midnight mass on Christmas Eve/Christmas day. Another tradition that unfortunately Michelle was not able to participate in this year. They are from my home and they are from my sister and brother-in-laws house on Christmas day. We were invited there for dinner and it ended up being a fantastic day.
Christmas was absolutely wonderful this year. Having the kids and family around made it quite special. This was definitely a Christmas to remember. All the pictures can be found on the pictures page.
This marks Eddy’s 15th birthday. Another birthday means another chance to have a cookout. This cookout was unfortunately cut a bit short by the weather. The pictures had to be taken inside and Eddy is quite soaked from having to run outside and help move the birthday party indoors. Luckily the food had already been prepared and it was not a problem having everyone come inside to eat.
Eddy got everything he asked for, which is to say that all he asked for was this collection of books. The books are very important to him, because he likes to read them and to draw. He was very pleased with this and his pair of new jeans. There is one book missing from the picture and that is because it was on back order. That has since been resolved. As usual all the pictures can be found on the pictures page.