cocktails & mocktails party

the winners- mama and dad, matt, ben, heidi

look at the disaster that is my kitchen- haha!

dad's so proud of his "best presentation" prize :)

Saturday night we had one of my favorite parties of the summer in our backyard! In order to spread the love of the Ludwig Family Drink Competition to more people, we had a party called Cocktails and Mocktails. Fourteen drinks ranging from a Blueberry Ginger Mojito to a Cosmo Tart to a Panty Dropper (yep, you read right!) were pitted against each other... Brandy Slush (Ben and Heid's contribution) won the grand prize, mama and dad's Summer in a Glass took home the prize for Best Presentation and Matt Meyer's Dirty Monkey won Best Classic Cocktail. What fun!

Here's the winning recipe for those of you who are wanting to make some Brandy Slush goodness for yourself:

9 cups water
2 cups sugar
12 oz can limeade
12 oz can orange juice
3 cups brandy

Directions: Boil water and sugar to dissolve. Stir in oj, limeade and brandy. Cool. Freeze overnight. Serve a scoop of brandy slush in a glass of sprite/sprite zero.


dirt and sticks

Burke loves to 'help' in the garden... which mostly involves finding sticks, eating dirt, and sometimes pounding the dirt with the stick. It's a good life... :)


extreme community makeover

I have told y'all before that my mama is one amazing woman... She loves the Lord and loves people, plus she's an organizational genius. All of this combined means that she spends a decent chunk of her time helping people- making meals, volunteering at the church, getting to know each and every neighbor within a four block radius of their house...

One of the things she's been working on lately is coordinating a volunteer day for our church with an organization called "Extreme Community Makeover." It's really neat, actually... they partner with organizations or churches and homeowners to try to tackle home improvement projects. The focus is not necessarily just the project itself, though... it's more of a grassroots effort to inspire people to be a part of their community and improve their own homes and neighborhoods.

Anyhow, last Saturday was our work day... 80+ people armed with paintbrushes and ladders and saws and rakes from fellowship denver landscaped and painted and tore down a shed and all sorts of other goodness in an effort to be good neighbors to our fellow denver-ites. I'm so proud of my mom for coordinating this and so thankful for all of our friends who spent their Saturday working on other people's house projects... I can't wait till round 2!


happy birthday dad!

Even though Jordi contends that I am a "40% Ludwig, 40% Ingram, 20% Adam-Gentry-Influence Mutt" that doesn't truly take after mom nor dad, growing up, mom used to say to me all the time, "You and your dad are fighting because you're too much alike!" Here are some of the things I hope I got from him:
-his affection for kids and babies- he is a baby whisperer through and through
-his propensity toward laughter and silliness- it was hard to find a picture where he wasn't laughing
-his streak of mischief
-his talent for making things grow
-his open affection for us- he is so proud of us and loves us so much and tells us that all. the. time.
-his generosity
-his 'there's always room for one more' approach to family... pretty much, if you want to be a part of our fam, you can be :)
-his engineer side, always rigging up some crazy device
-the way he treats life like one big adventure

Happy birthday daddy! I am so thankful for you!


just like his mama

Burke mostly takes after Adam- in his looks, his temprement, his mannerisms... But lately there are things cropping up that he and I share. Our shared love for cleaning and cleaning supplies for example (wouldn't it be great if that stuck?), his PASSION for popcorn (a riot to watch), his love for berries (we haven't tried pomegranates yet) and his can-sense-it-from-a-mile-away affection for cookie dough. What a funny kid!


back to school and a new season

tomato plants gone wild

I love back to school y'all... I love school supplies and school clothes shopping (can't wait till Burke's old enough!) and settling back into a routine. When I was a teacher, back to school meant a chance to do things differently and better than the year before, a fresh start. And now back to school brings the added bonus of the beginning of garden goodness- a kitchen full of tomato stewing and pesto making and jalapeno canning. New orange planner in hand (from the school supply section at target- haha!) I am ready for this new season!


home sweet home

After our family vacations, staying with Evette and Mark, a belated anniversary celebration, and some time in the mountains, we are back in town and ready for things to settle down again! Here are some pictures of our last couple weeks... normal life here we come!


family pics and my ubertalented sister

Ok, so Jordi is coming to Denver for a photo shoot in September. And while she was here last week, she wanted to try out a bunch of different backgrounds as possibilities for said photo shoot. Guess who got to be her guinea pigs? Of course, they are my favorite family pictures we have yet... I love the way she captured Burke's personality and our little family so well in these shots. Get ready- seriously, they turned out so well.

Oh, and if you're needing amazing family pictures like these done and you live in the Denver area, she'll be up mid-September... :)


the spoils

While us girls were living it up in BV, the boys were trekking through the mountains with the llamas and the dogs in pursuit of the Promised Land of High Mountain Fishing. My grandpa, dad and a crew of guys used to make this trip annually and my dad is trying to bring the tradition back.

From what I hear, boyweek was lighter on the chatting, heavier on the physical exertion and survival skills (6 miles up and freezing rain- no thank you!) and full of such things as cigar smoking and 100 gigantic fish (the 35 pounds of cutthroat that they packed down to share speak for themselves) and glowsticks (packed in by my cousin Sean, but enjoyed by the whole crew) and boy bonding. They were all so proud of their fishing prowess and ready to jump on board dad's efforts to make this a yearly affair... I'm thrilled that they had such a great time!