Snapshots of our Week | School's Out for Summer!

School is finally out for summer!! Last week was Lila's final week and it was filled with fun activities for her class. She's had a great kindergarten year - lots of ups and some downs, but through it all her love of school and learning has stayed strong. She adored her teacher, Ms. Cohen, and I am grateful to her for nurturing Lila through her first year of elementary school.

And now, its time for some summer!

Lila's last week of school was filled with fun activities. I went to her classroom on Monday for an "Author's Tea", where the kids had prepared a few stories of their own to share with the parents. They also got up and sang a really cute song for us. On Tuesday the class had a picnic at the local park and the parents were invited to attend. It was a really good time. Thursday was a half day, and on Friday I took Lila out early so we could head down to Philadelphia for the weekend. 

Logan thoroughly enjoyed his final week of summer camp - the kids went in the sprinkler every day, enjoyed ice pops and did all sorts of art projects. He was sad to see it come to an end.

I am gearing up for our trip to California next week - I ordered a few activities to occupy the kids on the flight, including Kindles for both of them. I hope I don't regret it!  I also bought them both their own little suitcases for the trip.

I have a whole list of organizing, cleaning and purging I want to do when we get back from our trip - priorities on the list include the kitchen cabinets, and all of Lila's kindergarten drawings and papers, which I have been shoving onto a shelf in her closet all year. Time to go through all that and just save the best pieces. I ordered some plastic expandable sleeves and each school year I'll put the best artwork/papers in a sleeve labeled for that school year. 

I haven't been doing much on this front since I know we are going to be gone for a week. When we are back from our trip, I'll start working on some additional plants and flowers in the front yard. We have a few tomatoes growing on our potted plants on the front porch. I'm looking forward to the harvest!

We went to Philadelphia for the weekend to celebrate Eric's sister Dana's graduation from nursing school. We stayed in a hotel (a first for the kids) and had such a good time. The hotel had a pool, which Lila LOVED. Even Logan went in! The kids were totally enamored with the hotel experience - sleeping together in a big bed and taking the elevator up and down. We visited a couple of different parks and the waterfront, ate out at a couple of great restaurants and enjoyed walking around Olde City (the neighborhood where we stayed). I even managed to run over to Walnut Street Theater to say hi to my dear friends, Chris and Lyn, who are doing a show there right now. It was a lovely weekend.

Still inundated with editing some video projects... really hoping to have drafts finished before we head off to California.

Still totally in love with my Sony a7iii. I was so impressed with the battery life while we were in Philly. I didn't have to change the battery once and I used the camera all weekend. I also just got the Sigma 35mm 1.4 (Sony e-mount) and so far, so good! Not quite as magical as the Zeiss, but at half the price, I can't complain.

We are looking for a dog to join our family! I've been looking on Petfinder, but not really ACTIVELY pursuing anything until we get back from vacation. If you hear of any puppies or young dogs looking for a family in the NYC area, let me know :)

A look at this week last year.

Francesca Russell is a documentary-style family photographer and filmmaker located in Garden City South, NY. If you'd like to see more of her recent documentary family photography, head over to her Facebook page or follow her everyday adventures on Instagram. If you are looking for a family photographer or lifestyle videographer on Long Island or in the New York City area to document your family, small business or event, please contact her for more information.