with aunt colleen



We stayed at Aunt Colleen’s in-law’s house all last week.  The best part about it was Aunt Colleen and Uncle Roger live right next door and we could visit every single day.  Colleen is my Mom’s baby sister, which is how the two of us ended up less than two years apart in age.

These days it is a lot of fun to have our families together for visits.  We can sit and talk while the children hang around us or run around playing.

I pulled in the driveway one evening and found them all sitting in front of the garage, talking and relaxing……it looked like a nice family time,  “pretty as a picture”. ^^


(Colleen, Roger, and their oldest, Molly.)  I just noticed Sarah is in the picture, on the swings in the background.  She really liked their playset.  It was the first thing she wanted to know about.

Between the two homes, there were five dogs.  My children LOVE animals and enjoyed making new friends with the dogs.  Seth had a great time throwing the tennis ball for Rusty.



Rusty could play fetch all day long and so could Seth.


When I aimed my big black camera at Maddie’s dog Jayda, she got nervous and shyly looked away.  We made jokes about how I wasn’t going to “shoot” her, oh but wait…..I guess I was, in a way.  😉


After we sat and visited for a while we got up to walk the trail.  They keep a walking path nicely mowed.  It leads down through woods to the creek that changes every year in the spring water-rise (and sometimes, flood).  The rocks were plentiful and the children promptly began throwing them.  We were glad that no one got hurt, with six children throwing stones.  Uncle Roger threw the dog’s bike tire into the water and it sunk before she could get it.  Jayda was so funny sitting in the water looking for it, not able to reach.  Roger had to get a stick to bring it back up.  She happily ran off with it when it appeared again.




(Madelynn, Molly, Seth, Megan with Sarah, Colleen, and Roger.)  A walk wouldn’t be proper without bringing something home from nature; Colleen had bark from a Sycamore tree.  I brought some back with me, too.  Apparently the Sycamore trees shed at this time of year.




Colleen and I prowled around this very old barn for antiques.  This place is right down the road from her house.  She hadn’t gone antiquing in the local places since the last time we were together (years) so we decided to keep that tradition.  I bought the yoke from Sunday’s blog post at this barn.  The barn was huge, quiet, and warm.  The wood and rafters were beautiful.


I would have never imagined there were so many old dusty books in the back room.  Books everywhere.  (dreamy)

We both found some book-treasures to take home with us.

Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Her Life  by Susan Hertog
Pilrim at Tinker Creek  by Annie Dillard
Stillmeadow Cookbook by Gladys Taber
Tomorrow Will be Better by Betty Smith  (she wrote A Tree Grows in Brooklyn)



We found fiestaware at the next shop.  I bought some one dollar vintage bread plates on a different day, but not when I was with Colleen.  I only took pictures.  It was a little pricey for my mood (on the hunt for amazing deals).



It was a great week to catch up and visit with Colleen’s family.  Love you all.

“The family is a haven in a heartless world.”  Christopher Lasch



8 thoughts on “with aunt colleen

    • Ann, thank you. My husband told me that as soon as I got my first digital camera “everyday was like a wedding day”. Speaking of weddings, pray for me tomorrow, I’m helping a friend shoot my brother’s wedding! xo

    • Do you have land around you to walk in? I sometimes take it for granted, I don’t know what I would do without some woods and fields around me! Hugs.

  1. I’m catching up around here online, and what wonderful memories of those special times with family you’ve made, Shanda! Love all your photos here, too! I would have absolutely no problem getting lost in that barn full of antiques, especially the books, either!! Antiques shops/barns can be a bit pricey around here as well, so we like to visit the ‘flea markets’ where they are much lower. Having family close by is what my heart desires, and between the two of us we have a fairly large family, but most of them are spread out and about so we don’t get together as often as we would like. We do see my sister, her husband, and children/grandchildren fairly often though. We don’t have woods or fields around us to enjoy like you do, so it’s a treat to read what you share! We live on a busy road … wasn’t busy when we moved in but they widened the road for more traffic which makes for … yep, more noise and pollution. We’ve been praying for a place where the quiet will surround us and where we can enjoy some much needed fresh air!

    I noticed you mentioned your brother’s wedding and that you were helping to take the photos. I did get a glimpse of some of the ones that were taken, over on Facebook. Love the one with the guys in their sunglasses! I’m looking forward to seeing some of the 350 that you took! It simply amazes me how many photos we can take at an event like that with a digital camera! I helped shoot my great niece’s wedding last September with our son and took lots, too, and although I was quite anxious about it, I did manage to get quite a few images that they were pleased with. I have no doubt you did a beautiful job at your brother’s wedding … and what an adorable couple they make! You have a blessed weekend, my friend! Hugs.

  2. What a lovely home! I’m partial to old white houses…and not just because I live in one. 😉
    My family is like yours in a way…my boy’s best friends are my little brothers who are the same ages. I’m sure their children will be playing together one day.
    Love that old barn! There is a flea market in our area where I can always find cheap fiesta pieces. Not that I need anymore!!! But those rare finds sometimes are fun.
    I can just imagine that lovely smell of old books too…ahhhh.

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