Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Family! Yay!

The very last week of July was an exciting week for us. We actually have some Swecker family near us now! And by near, I mean within a couple hours. So exciting! Merle, Stacie and Morgan have been stationed at Fort Lewis just two hours north into Washington. To help with their move, Mom and Dad took the drive with them and the girls (Tess & Morgan).  Following Abi's sedation dental appointment in which she had two root canals and more than a dozen fillings (her enamal hasn't properly formed), we drove north and picked up Grandma and Grandpa from the Sweckers. Boy was that a hearty dose of Seattle/Tacoma traffic for us all! Annie had come up to watch Zach while we were at Abi's appointment so she hung around until we arrived home and we enjoyed dinner together before she headed south.

We enjoyed a great long weekend with Grandma and Grandpa. We took in Damascus days. If you know Zach, you'll be shocked to hear he actually waited in line for 20+ minutes for his turn to fish in the little fishing pool. He hooked one, but lost it before they netted it. Regardless, he talks about fishing often. Who'd have guessed his patience!
We also headed up Hood and got a few miles in on the Salmon River trail. What a gorgeous day on the river! 
Monday evening of that weekend, Sweckers came down and stayed in the camper so that Mom, Dad and Tessa could fly back to Minnesota Tuesday morning. I had a work meeting and Steven knows the route to the airport so that morning, Abi and Zach stayed home with Merle, Stacie and Morgan. When I left, Abi and Zach were sitting on Merle's lap watching Monsters, Inc. This week, I hear, "Washington Washington Washington" coming from our back seat in the car. I asked Abi, "What's Washington?"  She says, "Its where Uncle Merle, Auntie Stacie and Morgan live Mom!" Yes, we're excited to have family close. And it warms my heart beyond words that within hours of meeting, my children took to Sweckers as if they've always lived a few hours away and not a few thousand miles away.

Thursday, July 4, 2013


What a wonderful time of year! We've had two cuttings of broccoli and enough lettuce that I've given 6 heads of it away. The beans, tomatoes, parsley, cilantro, pumpkin, zucchini, basil, carrots, and peas are all growing great guns too.  The kids and I did just plant another crop of peas and lettuce to have ready when I pull these plants. I couldn't find Zach this afternoon in the yard... and there he was. Eating the broccoli right off the plant!

And we have our first egg! I heard quite the commossion coming from the coop as Abi and I were leaving to pick up Zach from our friend's house. So I later went to let the girls out and just thought I'd check the nesting boxes. And there it was! The reason Daisy was making SUCH an INSANE ruckus earlier today.
We're enjoying have the five chickens though Steven's said a few nice words having the luck of stepping in the "natural fertilizer" found around the yard when the girls have been allowed to range frequently. The two younger hens aren't quite full grown yet and likely won't start laying until mid-late August. 
Belle & Sticky
Daisy, Pocket & Rocket

Prineville Reservoir camping

Our friends Lashaunna and Sandor along with their 3 kids invited us camping at Prineville Reservoir in central Oregon last week. This is the 7th year they've gone in a row... And the first year they've had wind and rain storms every day we were there! Boy, were we grateful we had the camp trailer and were not tent camping. It was a quick learning curve for us on how to set the trailer and all the hook ups to go. I learned how fast my dishwashing habits contribute to a full gray water tank too. Despite the weather, we had an absolutely fabulous time! The kids could have camped for weeks more.  Steven and I not so much with the weather we had. We were awoken each night by down pours or wind gusts rocking the camper and the kids slept through it all! So each morning by 6:20 a.m., Zach would roll over in his bed, push our curtain aside and announce, "I awake! Chocolate milk." 
"We're mermaids!" Katy & Abi
Abi's little mime
Looking up to the camp from the lake... Abi make a "scoot" path with her tush the entire way.
Abi, Jake & Zach

Zach & Katrina

A boy and his cheetos

 Our camp was about 40 yards from the lake. We were surprised how well the kids did staying out of the water. As soon as they had permission, they were in at least up to their knees each day. The kids immensely enjoyed throwing rocks into the lake. It was amusing to watch the hard core water sporters that were there tubing, wakeboarding and skiing in the rain. One day broke into the 70s, but it sure wasn't balmy water sports weather in my mind!
Sandor & Jake

We lucked out and Shane & fam, Shaun & Michelle as well as Suzie and Larette were all able to drive over from Redmond to visit us while we were there also. There's just something great about fellowship around the campfire with a cold beer in hand!