Monday, July 28, 2008

What a short, but strange trip it's been

It has been a little while now since I have blogged that now I am just going to be playing catch up. The photos are backwards in order because I still haven't figured out how to move them. Saturday, early afternoon, we decided to take off and go camping. I know, spontaneous. I can't help it! We are pros though. We had the entire van packed up in around 30 minutes and were on the road. Nathan's friend Zack joined us so we were pretty jam packed, but they all made it in one piece. After the grocery store, we were on the road around 4pm. We knew it would be a busy weekend, but we had faith that we would find a spot, as we always do. We headed for Sequim, one of our favorite spots, around an hour and a half away. On the way there (and back) I had to stop by my favorite shrimp spot. The Hull family shrimp stand, on their property in the woods. It is the absolute best shrimp you will ever eat in your life. The shrimp are down deeper in Discovery Bay and so they are more muscular which gives them a king crab like texture and just as sweet. There is no place but Discovery Bay to sample these shrimp. The people that live there in their RV's are a trip as well! You've seen Forest Gump right? Enough said. After I got a free jumbo shrimp sample, the rest of the gang hopped out of the van to get theirs. You should have seen Mr. Hulls face. Each shrimp would have cost around a dollar each.......times 6 kids and two adults, you do the math! I bought plenty of the small more affordable ones though, so it all evened out. We hit a couple of camp spots and they were full, so we set out for Crescent Lake, another 45 minutes away. I said one of my good prayers and asked the kids to say one to ask Heavenly Father to bless us with a camp spot, knowing that every other site was booked. We pulled in to Crescent Lake around 7pm and the campgrounds said full. I drove around anyhow and within minutes we found a spot. The kids were wide eyed and amazed. It was the last spot!
Nathan stood outside with his hands out and said "Faith"! Luckily our fellow neighbor campers were LDS (we later found out) and totally dug the enthusiasm. Unfortunately, as it turned out, the campsite was spoken for, but the owners didn't come back until 10pm when we were all in bed and it was a first come first serve campgrounds. They hadn't left anything behind to claim their spot, so we stood our ground and offered the opportunity for them to speak to the park ranger. The guy was like a character from a scary movie. "Secret Window" to be exact. His voice was southern, monotone and commanding. Too bad for him, this mama bear had just gotten all the kids settled and the baby too. I wasn't about to pack up and leave! Saturday morning after a long long long night of listening to the restrooms RIGHT next door and the bright light keeping us awake all night, we very eagerly took off to good old faithful Fort Flagler. On our way there, we decided to stop by another one of our favorite places, which is a berry picking place and fishing hole. Nathans friend Zack had never fished so of course he was first and wouldn't you know it, he caught a 3 pounder! Brennan caught the second, see video below. It started pouring rain about 15 minutes before we arrived at Fort Flagler. Shane and I just looked at each other and laughed. Oh well! We set up camp at a great site ( everyone had left either because of the rain or because it was a Sunday) and actually had a dry spot for the tent. After a couple of hours, the rain let up and we cooked a delicious meal of fresh caught trout with lemon, fresh sweet corn, and red potatoes. Yum! The boys ran around in the barracks (spelling?) while Shane and the little ones hung out around the fire. Today, Monday, we woke up and headed down for the beach. Wouldn't you know it, today was absolutely beautiful. Ciao.

- Myron and his beautiful fort buiding. The kid has talent, what can I say?
Brennan was too cute wearing my baby wrap with Mae.
This kid is way to cute for his own good. His parents must be hot!
Zack and Nathan created a raft using some driftwood and seaweed. Way to go Maguiver!
I just love this photo. Mae is so independent, she just goes off on her own all the time. She rarely turns back to see if we are watching, which we always are.
Amazing tree that this photo just doesn't capture the essence of.
Beautiful Mae. Just look at her.
Picking raspberries, and eating them on the way.

Zack and Nathan, the "net men". Catch those fish boys!
We have been going to this place for years, but each time the owner still has to show our boys the freshly removed heart and how it still beats long after removal, and each time, they are still utterly fascinated.

Brennan's fish to the left, Zacks to the right. Size doesn't matter though, right? Our delectable dinner.

Crescent Lake

As promised, a random photo of Brennan's scout troop. The boys at Lake Crescent and some kid behind Nathan that almost looks like Brennan but more like someone else's asian kid.
The boys pickin' berries.
Mom and Mae again. If Mae gets her good photo, then I get mine!

Missy Mae pickin berries.

Brennan catching his fish!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

What's for dinner?

I thought this would be fun. If you have a blog, take a photo of what you had for dinner and the details of any special ingredients, etc. This might be a great way to get new ideas for dinner!
Here's what was on the menu for tonight.
Oven baked salmon with lemon and garlic, sauteed asparagus and shitake mushrooms with garlic and olive oil, and a nice spinich salad with feta and tomatoes with a light olive oil, cilantro, balsamic vinegar, lemon dressing. Bon apetite! On with the blog. Nothing much to report. Rylan has spent most of the day in time out. I am trying some "Super Nanny" techniques, such as putting him back on time out everytime he sneaks off. He did this for an hour today. Good times. Mae has been an awnry girl, and who can blame her. She is getting four molars at once. Myron is spending a week with his best friend, Nathan is moping around the house because he's "bored", and Brennan is off to cub camp. Do I sound a little deflated? It was a rough day, but there have been nice moments too. Brennan cleaned the entire kitchen after dinner, just because. Nathan is giving Mae a bath right now and making her laugh and Rylan is mellow and lying next to me right now with his book.
Here is happy Mae after a nice dose of acetametaphine. Ciao!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

No clever post title

I know, it's been a while since I have posted some photos. I have been having camera issues. On Monday, Leslie Lou and I took the kids to Silverdale. Well, I took two of mine and she took her three. Our "quick trip" into Silverdale (about 20 minutes from us) ended up taking 4 hours. First Rylan was car sick, Dillon decided to sneak out of his car seat and climb over the seats, Mae decided she'd had enough of the car seat and let us know by screaming, Kate was sleepy and wanted out of her seat,then of course, Rylan was sick again. Meanwhile, we did squeeze in some mommy time at Joanns and the Learning Tree. Thank you Leslie for a fun time. It's nice to go through these things together. It's a good thing that our kids are so stinkin cute! Leslie and I went to Joanns to purchase felt for our felt foods projects. We are really excited to get started to stay tuned for photos of our creations. I am hoping that by the time Mae is 3, I will have a lot of fun foods for her to play with. Last night, Chantal and I started our night walking routine. It was nice and cool outside and we got to spend time together just us. Today, Chantal and I took some of our kids to the library book sale. I found some true treasures. I look for vintage childrens books. I read these to my kids because I really feel that society dumbs down our kids. If you read books from even 20 years ago, you can see a drastic difference in the writing and use of words. Plus, it's neat to read about a different time period and hear fun slang such as "oh golly".
I also figure that one day, these books will be worth so much money to my children. It's an investment. My score for the day is an old Oxford Poem book worth 80 dollars that I purchased for 50 cents. My score last month was a Childrens song book from 1911 worth 280.00. Of course, I will never sell these. That's all for now, here are some photos. Ciao

This is Mae in an antique nightgown that I picked up at my friends store. I love to put Mae in it and she loves the softness of the cotton. It is very fragile so I had a friend reinforce the stitches, even still, we'll see how long it can stay this way.
Mae's first trip to the dentist was last week. I cannot believe that they charge the same price for her to go as the boys. All the dentist did was count her teeth and let me know that she has 4 molars coming in. Trust me......I know, she's a moody one that Mae.
Rylan playing the piano this evening. He makes up his own songs.
A cute video of crazy Mae. Brennan is in the background egging her on. He has taught her to growl which is too funny.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Catch up

I have no photos to post which is really a shame because I took several. I took my older digital camera to the last two events that I am going to write about below, and as it turns out....the cable uploader thingamabob is MIA. So I will try to be as descriptive as possible and post photos when I get the chance. My good friend Liesl (daughter of sheep family, the Boundys) is turning 40 on the 21st. For her pre birthday celebration, about 8 of us including Liesl and excluding Myron and Brennan, went on a nice walk downtown from the church. Poor Liesl had eaten some bad shrimp so she dealt with that while walking! She's another wonder woman friend of mine. Myron and Brennan had had scouts right before and so they tagged along. We went to Moras for ice cream and I gave them 5 dollars to run up to the market to buy some candy. The ice cream at Moras is ridiculously over priced so I sort of boycott them. It's nearly 5 dollars for an ice cream cone. We had great conversation and headed back to the church. It was a great walk and fun to catch up with the girls. Saturday was Pioneer Day and we attended the 27th Pioneer Day celebration at the Boundy Farm. A friend asked me how many I had been to, and I was embarrassed to admit that I hadn't been to many growing up here. I was always off with friends doing other things. It was a lot of fun. Rylan and I went horseback riding, Mae won for the best pioneer hat (pictures to come later), the older boys boated around the large pond and mom and dad got to converse with good friends. Nathan and his good friend Zach also biked 8 miles round trip to the farm and back. They had a great time. Today was a beautiful sunny sabbath day. Tonight we will be having dinner with our good friends the Hansens at the park. I will remember to bring the correct camera! Ciao.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Fun at the Boundy farm

After a full day in Silverdale yesterday, we arrived home (at 6:30) to a message on our machine from Sharon Boundy asking us to come and help catch some sheep to be sheared at 7. I had been asking/begging for her to call us when she was ready so that I could selfishly get the wool. We were so excited. Our whole family (minus Myron and plus a friend of Nathans) jumped in the van and sped to the Boundys. I was afraid that we wouldn't get there in time and that the sheep would already be corraled. Boy was I wrong! It's not as easy as one might think. Bishop, Sharon and Sol were out in the pasture with lassos trying to chase down the sheep and had been unsuccessful. They are quite fast and big jumpers! Shane and the older boys headed in and together they all tried to corner them again, this time all spreading out. Wouldn't you know it, the sheep weren't intimidated at all. They just kept running and jumping right through the blockade. Bishop fell down a couple times as well after being knocked over by the sheep and sustained a few nicks and scratches. Nasty business having to be the "lassoer". After another friend came to help, it was apparent that this might end up being an all night sort of event. Shane, exhausted and frustrated with the long chase, finally decided to get down and dirty. As soon as one of the sheep came near enough to him, he grabbed the sheeps wool and threw it down to the ground like a pro wrestler. I couldn't believe my eyes! Then he held the sheep down until we could rope it and put it into the truck. It was amazing! Barbaric.....but amazing all the same. Thats my man! After an hour and a half of chasing, that's all it took. After getting the first sheep on the truck, it was time to catch the second. Shane had the technique down, not 5 minutes later, he had tackled the second sheep. Rylan was so excited watching from the fence. He said..."Good catch dad"!. Too cute. Here is the sheep shearer. The bishop said "isn't it so amazing to see a professional at work".
It is true. It is neat to see someone that knows what they are doing and knows the ins and outs. It is a beautiful thing. This guy didn't even use gloves!

This is the wool that was just sheared. I get to wash it and dry it...long process. It will be worth it to have Mae's felt toys be 100% natural.
On to the second one. There were a couple of funny quotes last night. First was the bishop looking at the sheep and asking the sheep shearer, "So do people really call them dingleberries".

Second was when Brad (guy in the truck above holding the second sheep) was asking for us to hurry while the shearer was slowly taking his time showing off his yarns and talking about techniques for washing. Brads bottom was numb and he had been sitting in that same position for at least 45 minutes. I walked up to Sharon and the group and asked that they get started on the second sheep to relieve Brad and the shearer rather curtly replied "we'll get to you". It was hilarious. He couldn't have acted more uninterested in Brad's situation if he tried. He actually continued showing the different wools and dyes, etc for another 15minutes. Poor brad. He didn't even volunteer to hold the sheep in the first place. He just happened to be the one holding the sheep last! Too funny. Stay tuned for extra photos of the men and woman sheep wrangling.

It was a fun night and we ended up getting home around 9:20. The second sheep ran off after being sheared and as of today still hasn't come home. Where is little bo peep when you need her?


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Rylans day in Seattle

Yesterday we felt the urge to get off the Island. Shane took the day off of work and we asked the boys what they wanted to do for fun. Nathan, Myron and Brennan all wanted to play at their friends houses so...we took advantage of the fact that it would be just the little ones with us. We made it Rylans special day in Seattle. I am posting so many photos that i'll keep the blog short. Ciao.
Here is Rylan getting ready to board the monorail. He was so excited. Here is Ry at the Childrens Museum in their mini mexican restaurant. It was so much fun!
This is the mini grocery store.
He spent a lot of time shopping for just the right ingredients.
Mae was pooped by the end of it.

After rushing to get home, I ended up making it to my good friend Carlyn's birthday. From left to right, Jenny, Carlyn, Nicole and I.

Rylan eating the much desired cotton candy. Pike Place market. I had to take a photo of the new area above. I loved the flowers and tables with the umbrellas.
Beautiful market treasures. My favorite purchases are grapples, artichokes and mini cauliflower.
Tonight I made my famous chicken pot pie with rosemary. It was nice to buy fresh produce.

Mae and Ry in a mock fire truck at the childrens museum
Mae at the childrens museum. She was so excited about the balls. She would put one in each hand and then another would roll down. It was so funny to see her trying to grab each one.
This is the amazing water feature at Seattle center. Kids from all over come to play in this.
Rylan got soaked. Funny little guy. He didn't mean to. It was too funny.
At Seattle center they have carnival rides and Rylan got to drive a bumper car. He was so excited. It was his best day ever.

I don't know how to rotate this video so you all can see it normally. This was a great guy that I really wanted to capture on film. There are so many musicians at Pike Place, but this one really captured my interest. Enjoy.

I tried to do a 360 view of Pike Place but my memory was full right before my complete circle.

Here is Mae and Ry just before we entered the museum. Mae just couldn't stop laughing at how silly it was that Rylans head was on the body of a fish. Too cute.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Baseball and church

Today was another beautiful day. Hectic in the morning. Instead of arriving 15 minutes early like usual, we were late by my standards and on time. We have to get there early to save our bench. Our family is so large and we love to sit in the fourth row, right in front of my "old bitties". This is a group of 70's something women, that I just love. Anyhow, after church we had to scramble over to Tophams for their end of season baseball potluck. I know, it's been a while since the season ended, but this was the first time we could get together. It was nice. Rhonda and Matt had just returned that morning from Portland where they completed a 240 mile bike ride from Seattle just yesterday. They had missed church and had to get the house ready by 1 o'clock for the party. Rhonda, you constantly amaze me! Anyhow, it was a great party and it was fun to hang out at her new house and Elisa's old one. It's nice to keep the house in the ward. :)
Just another cute photo of Nora and Mae. Nathan and Shane. They were being smart allecks and woudn't let me get a good shot.
Mae at church today during nursery play time.

Another one of Mae's many many many expressions.
The team all together to listen to Coach Matt.

This is the video of the day. I wish I would have gotten Matt's speech about Brennan as well. As parents, we weren't sure who he was talking about until then end of his speech. Here is the tail end of what Matt said about Myron. He mentioned Myrons consistency and his pitching that saved several games. He called Brennan "lil scrapper" because Brennan goes for everything and also that when Brennan got up to bat, he always got onto base.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Everyone together again

I know, I say everyone and then I fill my blog up with photos of Mae. First things first, Nathan returned safetly home from scout camp. Seriously, I was waiting out on the deck for him to come up the driveway. It's strange, but he seems so much older now. So mature. He had so much fun and told us lots of stories of pranks and mischievious acts that were done on his part. As parents, we are so proud. Myron had been gone nearly as much as Nathan and so having the family together today was very special. We decided to make the most of it. After picking Myron up, we headed to Annies Place for lunch. They make the most unbelievable cheeseburgers and philly cheese steak sandwiches. Then we went to see WALL E at the theater. It was okay. Definitely not the best Pixar movie, but I am a tough critic. Mae spent the whole time climbing up and down the stairs. Rylan lost interest about 25 minutes into the film. The older boys liked it and that's all that matters. After the film, we headed over to Home Depot to buy some lumber for the fence and some more flowers. We have so many flowers and plants that are ready to plant but haven't been yet. I was hoping to get to it today, but the ground is just too dry. Anyhow, that is all for now. I have to get my lesson ready for tomorrow. Ciao.Many many photos of Mae because today, her eyes were just mesmerizing.
Look how blue they look! I have been trying to get more creative in how I take photos of Mae.
Love those toes!

Mae loves to eat rocks. Reminds me of my last 3 pregnancies. I had such a craving for dirt. Hey, if she doesn't mind, I don't either. I love this angle that I shot her from, but she is such a pickle to take photos of. I can hardly get her to hold still long enough.

Video of the day. Mae and Rylan.