The word stuck in my head to describe this weekend: Quintessential.

As in, we’ve had a quintessential summer weekend.

We kicked it off with the annual tractor cruise Friday night. Nearly 200 farmers and tractor enthusiasts drove their vintage machines into The ‘Ville for the night and parked them in a lot on the university campus. This year, I thought it would be fun to take Phoebe.

We walked to see the tractors, and Kates and Faye joined us later. As we walked through the lot, Phoebe, of course, wanted to climb aboard every tractor.

She also grabbed my camera from me and proceeded to snap a picture of nearly every single tractor in the lot. Row by row.

Here's a slideshow of her work. ...

Eventually, a colleague of mine, Leslie, spotted us. The proud owner of a vintage tractor herself, she led us to her Farmall. … I had seen her earlier in the day and we discussed the possibility of Phoebe taking a ride but decided it was probably a bit too soon for her.

Forget about that conversation.

Phoebe eagerly accepted Leslie’s invitation to sit in the driver’s seat.

As Phoebe got comfortable, Leslie decided to start up the tractor. We thought that might do it for Phoebe, and she’d reach for me to climb down. But when the engine started rumbling, Phoebe didn’t flinch.

Then, Leslie looked at me for approval to take her for a ride. I nodded and eventually they were backing out the tractor …

* * *

Earlier in the week, Phoebe proudly built a nest of blankets on our living room. That bout of creativity that led to her begging us to have a “family sleepover.”

So after we returned from the tractor cruise, we ordered a pizza and popped in Phoebe’s “Cars” DVD.

When the movie was over, I tucked Phoebe into her nest on the floor and set up one of my own using our couch cushions and some blankets. Kates claimed her spot on another couch.

And we had our family sleepover in the living room.

Now, Phoebe wants to make it a Friday night tradition.

* * *

Saturday morning we woke up to rain, which turned into a good old-fashioned thunderstorm as the morning continued.

That was a good thing because we desperately needed the rain. Plus, deep down I was more interested in spending the day working on some inside projects and didn’t want to feel as though I had to be outside doing yard work and taking advantage of sunny weather.

Phoebe actually slept until 9. And when she was ready to get out of her pajamas, she donned a ballet outfit that she barely fits into.

With her recent discovery of “Annie,” I realized I have the soundtrack on vinyl. I put it on the turntable, and Phoebe was delighted. So much that we played it all afternoon. Over and over and over.

* * *

We capped our weekend this afternoon by joining our friend Matt and company for a birthday party at the country club.

Most of the guys went golfing, but I don't golf. So I hung out by the pool and watched Phoebe and the other kids splash around.

Kids laughing and having a ball. The hot sun beating down on us. At the country club pool. Quintessential.

As the party was ending, we headed inside the clubhouse to say our goodbyes. Phoebe sweetly negotiated with the hosts for an extra snack and some balloons, too.

Unfortunately, it all ended with a meltdown in the middle of the parking lot when one of Phoebe's balloons popped.

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