Friday, August 29, 2014

Ballet Beautiful

Well, while we have been waiting for kindergarten to begin, we've had to be creative.  Maddie wanted to do ballet with my exercise video.  It was really cute to watch.
Sometimes I like to buy a new exercise video to change things up.  I decided to try something new, and use Amazon Instant Video so I can just play it on the iPad.  It's been nice.  I could exercise while the kids were watching a movie this summer.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

1st Day of 4th Grade

Elizabeth is all alone at her elementary school this year.  Emma has moved on to middle school, and the twins will be attending the kindergarten school.  But in spite of this disconcerting fact, she was happy to go to start school this morning.

 Annie and Maddie don't start until next week, so Elizabeth let them join her in one of her pictures.

Middle School

Somewhere along the way, this little girl grew up.  Now Miss Emma has started middle school.  That's 6th grade.  That means changing classes, and starting band and STEM, and no one watching to see if she gets on the right bus.

She was nervous about changing schools, especially since she doesn't have any classes with her two best friends, but on the whole, I think she really liked her first day.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Onions, anyone?

Ryan dug up all of our onions today.  These aren't even storing onions, so I am slowly trying to make my way through dehydrating all these.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Summer Time Fun

Today, we didn't even both getting out the slip and slide, or anything.  The kids just wanted to play in the automatic sprinklers.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Waiting for Breakfast

Every morning our cat Merlin comes to the side French style doors and meows at us to feed her.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Master Ryan

We were so excited to see Ryan's diploma arrive in the mail today.  
I have to say, Concordia University was impressively quick about sending out the official transcript (like 2 weeks after he finished- hello pay raise) and the diploma (three weeks after finishing).

Can we just shout for joy?  His masters is DONE DONE DONE.  YAY!

This a good thing, because next week Ryan has his first meeting at Gonzaga for this year's project- the Administrative Internship.

Friday, August 15, 2014


This time of the summer gets busy with trying to preserve everything that is coming out of our garden.  Luckily I enlisted some help for peeling our tomatoes for salsa.
 Ryan and I also made pickles.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Sheep Shearing

You know, when I married Ryan, I knew he had done quite a lot of sheep shearing.  I just didn't realize this particular skill would be used as often as it is.  Grandpa drove cousin Megan's two sheep all the way down here for Ryan to shear.
 Megan and Amy came too.  Some of my girls tried to sneak into Grandpa's truck before they left.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Pantry Organization

Our pantry was out of control.  So this morning I thought it would be a good idea to organize it.  When it was done, I realized a couple of things.  1. I should not let the kids put away groceries unsupervised.  2. We are set on chocolate chips for a while.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Grandma's Birthday

We weren't able to make it to Grandma's birthday party, due to Ryan being at the fair all day yesterday, so we drove up to spend the afternoon and evening at Grandma and Grandpa's.  We tried this new (to us) dessert called cupcake waffles.  You make up cake batter and cook it in the waffle maker.  
 The girls loved decorating their own.

Happy Belated Birthday Grandma!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Fair Time

While we were out town and enjoying ourselves, the clock was ticking ever so much closer to the beginning of the fair.  I helped quite a bit, and we kept the display pretty simple.
 I made these without any patterns.  Well, I found some ideas on Pinterest, and made my own.
 I suggested Ryan use spray paint this year.  It sped up the painting process.
Ta da!

Since the kids weren't showing animals this year, we had them bring some of our garden produce to enter so all of them could bring home ribbons.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Random Kid Pictures

Sometimes I look at our camera, or my phone, and I find I have pictures I don't remember taking.  Like these.

Sunday, August 3, 2014


We made the most of our 1 week with Daddy.  After coming home Tuesday night from Oregon, we left again Wednesday afternoon for Spokane and spent the night at a hotel.  Thursday morning we left bright and early for the breakfast of champions (donuts) and then off to Silverwood!
 We arrived a bit early, so we walked into the park and waited for them to let us in for the rides.  We made a bee line to the roller coasters.  First we did the Timber Terror with all the girls.
 This is the I've Never Been On A Roller Coaster But Getting Ready For My First Ride photo.  That picture pretty much sums up how these girls felt about roller coasters.  Elizabeth LOVED them, and Emma, not so much.  Annie and Maddie were somewhere in the middle of those emotions.  We took all the girls on Tremors too.

Next we got soaked on Thunder Canyon.
 We had all of the kids drive their own vintage car.  Elizabeth was cool about roller coasters, but driving the car totally freaked her out.
 Emma loved it.
 Annie and Maddie thought they were big stuff.
 After a peanut butter sandwich lunch, we changed into our swimsuits in the van, and played at Boulder Beach.
 Had yet another peanut butter sandwich meal, and went back for more rides.  (After this trip, no one wants another peanut butter sandwich.  Possibly ever again.)  Elizabeth convinced her dad to take her on the Panic Plunge.  We did the Corkscrew together, and she got her dad to go with her again on that one, but she couldn't convince me to do the Panic Plunge with her.  What can I say?  The idea of a free fall does not appeal to me.
We didn't leave until after 9 pm.  It was a long day, and a long drive home, but the kids had a great time. (Ok, who am I kidding?  We all did.)  The girls are asking when we can go back.


After we packed up all of our camping gear, we started the journey home.  We went the slightly scenic way, and stopped by the Tillamook Cheese Factory.

 They make a heck of a lot of cheese.  It was sure cool to watch.
 Then we drove a little more out of the way to visit one more lighthouse at Cape Mears.  It wasn't a long walk from the parking lot to the lighthouse, BUT the walk was a wet one.  It was a bit foggy in the parking area, and again at the lighthouse, but the forest of trees in the middle must cause all the water in the air to condense and rain on you the entire time.

Then it was time to go home.

Oregon Coast

After one very long and uncomfortable night in which Ryan and I decided our "old bones" aren't as young as they used to be and we need a heck of a lot more cushion under us while we sleep, we went adventuring.  We drove down to Yaquina Head to see the historic lighthouse.  We made a reservation for a tour of the lighthouse, and checked out the visitor's center and then drove down to one of the beaches while we waited.
After a picnic lunch, we headed to the lighthouse to await our tour guide.  It was really foggy, so we didn't have a good view of the ocean.  It was also cold and windy, so we felt a lot of sympathy for the people who used to live and work at the lighthouse year 'round.  Yaquina Head lighthouse is a mile out to sea, and boy, do you know it.
Last time we were here, Emma was three and not old enough to take the tour.  But 5, 9, and 11-year-olds are big and strong enough to walk all the stairs, so we got the tour.  This wrought iron staircase is all original.  I loved it.
We discovered Elizabeth was not keen on the height when you can see all the way to the bottom.

Next, we drove to Yaquina Bay lighthouse for a self-guided tour of the lighthouse that was used for all of 3 years.
We had to drive over the Newport bridge.  We all thought it looked cool.
Then we drove north to find the Drift Creek covered bridge.  It's been moved from it's original location to someone's property.  But it's still available for public viewing.
Afterwards, we had dinner at a '60s style diner.  It had just about the slowest service ever, so it was really good that there were model airplanes hanging from the ceiling and tons of memorabilia plastered to the walls to look at.  And, while I was waiting for Annie to do her "business" in the restroom, the power went out.  It was just for a few seconds, but startling nonetheless.  During all my time waiting for kids to use the potty, I saw this in the restroom.  I felt "mirror bombed" by Elvis.  
After dinner, it was back to the ocean.