Summer Nights on the Dock

We had a lazy afternoon after Church today, but after Carter woke up from a nap we decided to take the kids fishing for a little bit.  Last summer Trav and Ava spent a lot of time after dinner together, fishing at some lakes near us.  Carter was young enough to not really know what he was missing out on, but this summer has been a different story.  He has wanted to fish with Daddy all summer and we just haven't been able to make it happen.  My parents did take the kids a few weeks ago when they had them for a week and Carter caught a fish on his first try! Fishing with the kids is not my favorite way to spend an afternoon but I knew they wanted to do it and I knew Travis would need my help to keep everyone on the dock and out of the water, so I agreed to go along!  
 We have this great campground just a few miles from our house and they have a nice dock that is usually very quiet.  We took the kids there on an overcast afternoon and within minutes Daddy had them ready to go!
Ava "caught" one right out of the gate on her lucky princess pole!  She LOVES to fish and has no fear of the fish or the worms, she gets such a kick out of the whole experience and it tickles Travis and I to watch her excitement.  I insisted she and Carter put their life jackets on and I'm so glad I did.  They were little busy bodies with no shoes on, running all over the place and being so loud it's a complete miracle that all the fish in the lake didn't pack up and leave!  
This was Carter's personal lane to run in for his big "race" that he kept insisting he needed to run! 
Up and down that dock he ran, back and forth, back and forth... not quite the fishing experience I was imagining! 
All smiles and hair blowing in the wind today!
Occasionally he stood still long enough to watch the bobber in the water, but mostly he was like a little bumblebee buzzing from one thing to the next.
This sweet girl just keeps looking older and older no matter how hard I try to keep her little!  
I love this picture of her, it makes me wonder if this isn't a glimpse of her at 15? 
And the same goes for this one.  So big, I swear he grows by the hour.  Those basketball shorts kill me!  Gone are the days of onesies and little cotton rompers  :) 
It's all so interesting when you are 4 and 2.  Touching a worm or touching a fish, there isn't anything quite as terrifying and exhilarating as that when you're little!
A two-for one, another fish and some "sea grass" as Ava likes to call it!
This time Carter got to reel it in and he was ever so proud of it!  He's mostly been too scared to go near the fish but with each one we caught he got more and more brave...
...until he finally was ready to reach out and touch it.  Or in his case, poke it really hard!  We had to tell him to be nice to the fish and then Ava informed us that he was ready to go back in the lake with his fishy family, ha ha! 
I have such sweet memories of fishing with my sisters and Dad.  I'm so thankful that Travis is not only willing, but excited to make these memories with our kids and when it doesn't quite go as planned (read: the kids run all over creation while he fishes and I yell at them to stay away from the edge of the dock and quit being so loud!) he is able to laugh and enjoy it for what it is.  Our kiddos think it was the best day of fishing ever because they each got a fish and we were all together.  That's really all it takes to thrill them.  Looking at these pictures makes me cherish this season for the innocence and the simple joys of childhood.  It also makes me want to gag seeing that finger of Carter's in his mouth after he reached out to touch that fish.  Poor Travis has a lot to put up with between the wild kids and his high maintenance wife who wishes she had hand sanitizer along and a hot cup of coffee...
 Everybody hum along now, can't you just hear the Andy Griffith theme song??
What a perfect way to spend the first day of September...

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