Most of the summer, I’ve been taking my camera to the beach in the evening. Last week I seized the opportunity to take a few pictures in the morning. It was warm and humid with very calm, clear waters. Pictures really don’t do justice to the vast range of colors or the way the water sparkles in the sun.
I can’t believe that another summer has flown by, and we’re now moving into September. Personally, I’m so glad that I don’t have to be in back-to-school mode and can enjoy every last bit of warm weather while it’s still here.
8/3: Keith Pulvermacher Band @ Denim Park. Denim Park is a fabulous spot in Milwaukee to hear free music on Wednesday nights in the summer. In 2014, I heard I’m Not a Pilot at Denim Park, and in 2015, I heard Parallel. This year I managed to catch the Keith Pulvermacher Band, featuring among others, Peter Thomas of I’m Not a Pilot. So fabulous. There is nothing like hearing great music outdoors on a beautiful summer night. I have a few video clips from the show over on YouTube.
8/6: Bristol Renaissance Faire. Jake and I have been going to Bristol since our early dating days. We have been at least seven or eight times, and it’s always so much fun. This was our third consecutive Bristol excursion during Steampunk weekend, which offers some of the best people watching you’ll see anywhere in southeast WI. A very nice fellow hobbyist photographer with a 70D wanted to take our picture so we got our first ever shot together at Bristol.
8/7-8/13: Montana. Obviously, one of the biggest things that happened in August was our week long trip to Montana. I have a separate Montana highlights post over here.
8/18: Full moon at North Point Lighthouse. I’ve spent a lot of time this summer watching the moon, especially the days around the full moons. I found out about the full moon lighthouse climbs when I was researching for my August Milwaukee events post and decided I had to make it to the last one of the summer. They had drinks and snacks, and the entire first floor of the house was open so you could browse their exhibits and artifacts when you weren’t making the climb. The lighthouse featured this photo on their Instagram and Facebook pages, which was pretty cool.
Also, before the full moon lighthouse tour, I hadn’t been to Lake Park in months and didn’t realize it was a huge Pokemon Go gathering place. Has anyone else experienced the Pokemon Go phenomenon this summer? There were literally hundreds of people there.
8/19: Church festival. Just about every Catholic church in southeast WI holds an annual festival, typically in the summer, as one of their big fundraisers. As illustrated by this photo, they’re kind of a big deal. In addition to more than half a dozen carnival rides, there were food and drink booths, multiple entertainment stages, casino games, auction prizes, lots of kid games, and more.
8/20: Zoo a la Carte. One of the single best events at the Milwaukee County Zoo is Zoo a la Carte. There are food stations and music, and the zoo is open late. The zoo is so big and the food lines are never very long so it’s easy to grab your food and spread out somewhere. Some of you may have seen a few food snaps in my Instagram story (randomcreativeart). While we were there, we got to meet the baby giraffe who was born this spring.
8/21: Irish Fest. For the past few years, Jake and I have been going to the Irish Fest Sunday mass and then enjoying lunch, Irish dancing, and a few of the exhibits. Milwaukee is home to several Irish dance studios, and they’re all fabulous.
8/26: Game night. Jake and I host a monthly board game night for family and friends to enjoy delicious food and drink, good conversation, and of course, a few games. I am terrible about taking pictures of game night because I’m always working on food prep or doing some sort of house cleaning or prep right up until the last minute. There are certain tasks like putting drinks on ice or getting an appetizer in the oven that just can’t happen until right before the event. Then we have people arriving and I forget all about taking pictures.
I can’t believe another month of summer is over already! *sniff* It’s been a great month, though, and I’m excited to share just a few of the highlights today.
7/3: Jake’s birthday. Jake and I had a low-key birthday celebration at home with his parents. We grilled, ate delicious appetizers and drinks, sat outside and enjoyed the beautiful weather, and had a backyard bonfire.
I don’t have any pictures from the 4th of July, but we had a nice celebration in town. Jake marched in the local parade in the morning, and we went to a couple parties in the afternoon and evening, one of which included watching the local fireworks.
7/6: Neighborhood pet parade. Yep, my neighborhood has an annual pet parade. Obviously it’s mainly a dog parade, but this year there was a super chill cat, too.
7/7: Day trip to Chicago. My dad and brother’s wife have birthdays the same week as Jake. My brother’s wife’s parents were in town for her birthday. We all attended the open rehearsal for her concert that weekend and had lunch at Pizano’s, where the waiter gave us two free chocolate chip cookie sundaes.
7/8: Hood Smoke at Summerfest. My brother is in the band Hood Smoke , and they played at Summerfest this year. My parents were able to come up for it.
7/9: Ben Folds at Summerfest. Jake and I went back to Summerfest the next day for Ben Folds after my parents headed home to Chicago. We ended up sitting through two other bands to get seventh row seats, which was worth it. The show was so amazing. My life is now complete because I’ve heard Steven’s Last Night in Town live with yMusic.
7/10: Visit with Joe and Melitta. Our friends Joe and Melitta were in town from Minneapolis very briefly, primarily so Joe’s 99 year old grandma could meet their four month old son. We ended up visiting with them at Joe’s parents’ house for a few hours.
7/13: Dinner with old friends. We had some old friends in town visiting family in between their transition to a new city for the Air Force. We hadn’t seen them in three and a half years. It was so great to show them our new place and catch up. They came over with their kiddos for dinner (including this rainbow fruit spread) and to hang at the beach for a bit. It was their three year old’s first time at the beach, and he was in love. He spent almost the entire time throwing all of the biggest rocks he could find into the water.
7/15: Parallel at Bastille Days.Parallel is a fabulous local band featuring keyboards and electric cello (recurring themes in my life, I know). I was really glad to have the opportunity to hear them live for the first time this summer at Bastille Days.
7/15: Emily Giffin book signing. In case the 7th row Ben Folds concert wasn’t enough of a bucket list item to cross off this summer, I also got to attend an Emily Giffin book signing right here in Milwaukee at Boswell Books. I’ve been an Emily Giffin fan for 12 years, and she’s one of my top influences as a writer. She is so grounded and truly amazing to her fans and just generally a really awesome person.
7/18-7/20: Moon watching. The night of the full moon in July and the night right before and right after it offered perfect weather for watching the moon rise in the evening.
7/22: Game night. Jake and I host a monthly board game night in which any and all friends who are free come over to enjoy delicious food and drink (did you see my snaps? follow along: randomcreative), good conversation, and of course a few games. Hobbes decided to get in on the action toward the end of the night.
7/23: Milwaukee in the fog. Jake and I had cleared the afternoon for an event that got postponed. Instead we went downtown and happened to catch this unreal fog.
What are you up to in August?
Any fun local events I should check out?
Unofficially this has been (and continues to be) the summer of golden hour. We have been blessed with so many beautiful summer evenings with perfect temps, little wind, and lots of amazing, soft light. Of course I’m taking advantage of it and bringing my camera with me for evening walks and other excursions. These long days will be gone before we know it, and I want to keep enjoying as many of them as possible while they’re still here.
P.S. I can’t say the phrase “the summer of” without thinking of this.
In my neighborhood, there seem to be very specific blooming periods for different flowers. One day you won’t see any daffodils and then the next day, there are dozens of daffodils everywhere you look. I know that this is true in many parts of the world, but I’ve never lived in a neighborhood where it occurred so consistently with so many types of flowers. Currently lilies are in bloom. Orange lilies are especially abundant, and it makes me so happy to see the bright petals while driving or walking along the local streets.
What flowers are blooming right now in your part of the world?