Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Mud Hens watching Mud Hens

I mentioned before that our boys took Minor League baseball team names this year. Catlin was represented by three teams at the rookie level: the Bats, the Grasshoppers, and our team: the Mud Hens.

We were fortunate to take a wonderful little family/team trip over to Indianapolis at the end of June to watch the real Toledo Mud Hens play, and we had an absolute blast!  

We all got dressed up in our Mud Hens gear and headed to the stadium after dinner at TGIFriday's.
Daddy and the boys

The fam! 
{Minus Lolee girl, who stayed home with Grandma Jane :)}

Our friends (and Colin's head coach) Nate and Kara, and Colin's best friend Colden/sister Addie

More friends/another coach! Ryan and Laine, and their son/Colin's friend Bennett

Same story! Our friends (and assistant coach) TJ and Amy, and their son/Col's friend Reef

Cameron checking out the giant field!

The boys were in heaven. They thought this was just the coolest!

Now, we were at the Indianapolis Stadium--so all of us in our Mud Hens' gear really stood out! We were able to get the boys down near the dugout, and the real Mud Hens took notice of all of our little Mud Hens and signed some autographs!
{L to R: Blake, Colden, Bennett, Colin, Cameron}

Getting, as Col put it, "real life autographs"

The boys loved it!
L to R, back row: Cameron, Colden, Reef, Colin, Blake, Bennett
Front: Brayden and Ethan

The boys (and siblings) stood at the front and watched for a long time.

It was an exciting night and even though the Mud Hens lost, the boys had a great time!
L to R: Reef, Isaac, Bennett, Sebastian, Hayden, Ethan, Blake, Jackson, 
Brayden M., Colden, Colin, Cameron, Addie, Brayden N.

Such a wonderful group of kids and parents--so thankful we got to be a part of this special night with all of them! Great, great memories!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The end of T-ball season

T-ball seemed to come and go in a flash.

The little ones do not have as many games as the Rookie boys do, and it seemed as though they were here and done in no time! I was so excited to capture a few really great moments from the Catlin Cardinals' very last game of the 2012 season.

Ethan, watching the other batters before getting ready to bat himself!

Here is a quick video of Ethan's last time at bat. He had a great hitting season, only hitting off of the tee one or two times all year. You have to watch to the end to see the HUGE grin on his face, once he is safe on first base and everyone is yelling that he did a great job!

Ethan scoring for the last time--Coach Bobby knew to move that tee because Ethan would slide at home every single time, whether he "needed to" or not! *giggle*
{Note the Merritt signature 'thumbs up' at the end!}

And then, there is the big slugger. 
Warming up with two bats, no less!

Cameron loved getting to be the last batter, because it meant he was the only player that didn't have to stop at first base when he got his hit. If he hit it hard enough, he would be able to do this:

(I was always so worried he was going to run poor Rylee over!!)

The very last time he was at bat, I caught a still of him sliding into home. This last hit 
was a lot closer than the video above, and he actually had the presence of mind to slide under the tag! 
The kid just amazes his Momma. :)

Lolee girl always offers comic relief on the sidelines!

Since this was the last game, the boys and their teammates were awarded their trophies.

They were awfully proud. :)

Coach Wright handing them their trophies

{Ethan, I do believe, is still sleeping with his. lol}

2012 Catlin Cardinals!

The crew

It was a wonderful season, filled with lots of special memories....

....and, as usual, I couldn't be prouder of the boys and their accomplishments!!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Holiday World!!

Right at the close of school, our family packed up and decided to do a little two day trip to a place we had never been: Holiday World!

Tom and Jen had been before, as well as several other people we know, and raved about the place. We've always wanted to go, and thought now was as good of a time as any! We decided to head down together and let the kids experience the fun!

Checking out the lazy river!

Our kiddos! What a cute little bunch :)
Aiden, Cameron, Ethan, Colin, Brooklyn, and Lola.

The fam--ready for a water adventure!
(possibly one of my new favorite family shots)

I should have known to trust this girl. Holiday World was as great as she said it would be!

I don't have a ton of pictures from day one, because we were in the water all day. The kids were exhausted by the time the park was about to close, so we grabbed something quick to eat, headed back to the hotel, and everyone was asleep in no time. Good thing--we needed good rest to get up and do it all over again the next day!

Holiday World is in a town called Santa Claus, Indiana. 
So, you can guess what the theme of the one hotel in town was, I'm sure!

The kids in Santa's sleigh

Cameron and Ethan were so excited--today we were going to ride some "land" rides--their favorite!

Love this family picture at the entrance of the park!

Colin did a very big boy ride (after muuuuuch convincing)--the Raven.

Then Daddy took the boys on the Scrambler.
I almost throw up just watching that ride. *shudder*
But they loved it!

The big (BIG) boys went on another coaster....

....and then did this one! I like to call it the Super Soaker.

Yeah....this geyser got them GOOD!

We did a few more "baby" rides for Lo and Ethan..... 
(Poor guy--he was just shy of the mark to ride the bigger boy rides. Like by 1/4 inch!)

{My amazing helper....Colin just adores his sister and would do absolutely anything for her!}

Even though they were meant for the littles, the bigs even had a good time riding them!

The canoe

Lolee girl loved this one!

I braved the one ride I can handle with the boys....

....the swings!
I was only sick for a few minutes afterward. LOL

The kiddie coaster

They loved this one, too. Could have ridden it 10 times.....oh, that's right. They DID!

While Daddy took the big boys on a few other rides, I took Ethan and Lola on the train.
The space was as cramped as it looked. I don't know how regular sized grownups fit in here....
seriously you don't want to know how long it took me to get back out.

But the effort of getting in the train was worth it for the smiles on these two's faces!

Holiday World was awesome, and I would highly recommend it to anyone. We will definitely try to make this a Summer tradition with our two families!