August 16 – September 17, 2017

Our house has become a yoga studio, pants optional. But check out their technique! Who can do downward dog with their head all the way on the floor?!

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This is what two proud kids look like when they refuse to sit down for dinner.

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Linus is really into reading by himself lately. Which is helpful because Mina wants to hear the same horse book over and over and over and over.

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Lots of hiking lately. The kids enjoy looking for things along the way, though I always get nervous when they actually pick up mushrooms.

Last time we were out, I pointed out the blazes to Linus. I explained that they mark the trail even when leaves have covered it, and you can always see the next blaze up ahead. We made a game of looking for them. Later we took a little side trail because I knew it would lead us back to the car. After we walked maybe 20 yards, Linus said, “We need to go back – I can’t see a blaze.” I was so proud of him!

Audubon Rocky Hill wildlife sanctuary

Audubon Rocky Hill wildlife sanctuary

Great Brook Farm state park

We’ve been going to Great Brook Farm a lot – for the hiking and the ice cream!

Great Brook Farm state park

Great Brook Farm state park

The kids are so sun-conscious. When Mina sees me without a hat, she points to her own head and yells, “Hat! Hat!”

Great Brook Farm state park

Trying to take more family shots…

Esplanade & Harvard bridge

With mixed results.

Esplanade & Harvard bridge

One evening we walked across the bridge between Cambridge and Boston. The kids loved it.

Esplanade & Harvard bridge

Esplanade & Harvard bridge

Esplanade & Harvard bridge

We were excited to find a park on the other side! The things you don’t notice when there aren’t little kids in your life…

Esplanade & Harvard bridge

Esplanade & Harvard bridge

Esplanade & Harvard bridge

Huh. Now I see where Linus gets that funny face he makes.

Esplanade & Harvard bridge

Mina really struts around now. She owned the bridge.

Esplanade & Harvard bridge

The kids are totally trained now to run behind and peek through when they see a cut-out like this.

Great Brook Farm state park

Great Brook Farm state park

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Stone Zoo

Great Brook Farm state park

More ice cream, please!

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We discovered a walkway in Lowell along the river recently.

Lowell river walk

Lowell river walk

Lowell river walk

Yen’s got a new lens that I absolutely love. He’s able to focus in really close and create a beautiful mood.

Lowell river walk

Not pictured: the kids are watching a squirrel in a strawberry tree. He kept nibbling a bit and then tossing the fruit down onto them. They thought it was hilarious.

Lowell river walk

Favorite exhibit at the favorite museum!

Museum of Science

Museum of Science

Little Mina is growing like a weed. This was less than a month ago: Yen had to turn her pants up twice to keep her from tripping. Now they fit perfectly!

Museum of Science

Linus’s new bike came in a giant box, which has been repurposed – first as a cave and now as a little house. I can’t believe how alike these kids are. The only reason I’m confident this is Mina is because she’s got those naturally sculpted eyebrows.

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Here is a rare shot indeed: Yen watching TV with the kids. He’s been taking care of the kids all day by himself for a couple of weeks now while Ba Noi is at home in Vegas. I’m so proud of him! He finds all kinds of activities and hasn’t even once resorted to just setting them down in front of the TV.

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Here’s that horse book I mentioned. Mina is convinced that the little girl is me. She always points and says, “Mimi!” (that’s me)

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One Sunday we headed out to Castle Island. I wish it were closer because it’s the perfect outing! It’s got a big playground, beach for chucking rocks, planes flying low overhead, and a long walk over a bridge.

Castle Island, Boston

Castle Island, Boston

Castle Island, Boston

Castle Island, Boston

Linus is finally getting used to his new bike. We took off the pedals so he can still use it as a balance bike. It’s a little heavier than the old one, so he’s building muscles! And it has a sweet bell.

Narrow-gauge rail trail, Bedford

Another attempt at a nice photo for a Christmas card, maybe.

Narrow-gauge rail trail, Bedford

And… maybe one that won’t be so good for a Christmas card.

Narrow-gauge rail trail, Bedford

Teeny tongue roll!

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The next weekend, an outing at the Public Garden in Boston. Both kids were in strange moods. Mina was just… skeptical as you can see here. And Linus was what he calls “a naughty puppy.”

Public Garden, Boston

Public Garden, Boston

Public Garden, Boston

Our driveway as constantly covered in drawings. When we go outside, Mina immediately grabs a piece of chalk. Even if we go for a walk, she brings it along and tags the neighborhood.

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Here’s that new lens again. I love it!

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Linus tends his garden. He’s going to be heartbroken when it’s done for the season. Maybe this weekend…

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Yen’s such a good photographer he can make even silly dinner photos look beautiful.

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This is the face Linus makes when he’s doing his Mommy impersonation. I suppose he’s right!

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I love this photo because you can finally get a good look at the sticker wall the kids have made. They’ve been really careful to avoid overlapping anything.

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Now here’s Yen really playing with that new lens. Of course I’ll have these printed for the wall!

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Yen took the kids to the national park in Lowell. Look at all those gears!

Lowell National Historical Park

Waiting for the trolley to go to the mill museum.

Lowell National Historical Park

Lowell National Historical Park

Always cautious in the elevator!

Lowell National Historical Park

I can’t believe they even had to look at the menu. It’s pho all around!

Viet-Thai restaurant, Lowell

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Mina was a little nervous about Grandpa at first. He’s got a beard, after all! By the end of the visit, though, they were buddies. Can’t wait until our vacation with them in December!

Battle Road (Miriam's Corner), Lexington

Battle Road (Miriam's Corner), Lexington

This is the closest we got to remembering to take a photo of all of us. We’ll do better when we’re in Portugal, I promise!

Battle Road (Miriam's Corner), Lexington

This runner was pretty amused to see Linus and Mina running the other way.

Battle Road (Miriam's Corner), Lexington

Battle Road (Miriam's Corner), Lexington

Battle Road (Miriam's Corner), Lexington

Action shot of my little runner!

Battle Road (Miriam's Corner), Lexington

Battle Road (Miriam's Corner), Lexington

Battle Road (Miriam's Corner), Lexington

Back at the museum in Lowell, Mina is drving a trolley!

Lowell National Historical Park boat tour

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I don’t think Mina knows about school yet, but she’s certainly ready to go! She put all of this on, by the way – all her idea.

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Hanging out, drinking milk. And between them, they have a whole outfit!

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Mina is really into wearing her sunglasses. One Sunday she refused to take them off all day!

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Burlington truck day

Burlington truck day