Sunday, October 15, 2017


Halloween was busy and full of costumes for everyone.  My friend puts on a murder mystery costumer party every year, and this year I was supposed to be a princess and my good friend Nicki was the grim reaper.  (She looked so good in the wig it convinced her to try bangs.)

Jason was an Egyptian pharaoh and also ended up being the murder victim.

Hunter decided he's past the dress up and trick or treat stage, but he was supposed to dress up for his Halloween orchestra concert, so he borrowed the Egyptian costume.

The Davis' invited us over for our pumpkin carving and sugar cookie night.  It's been a tradition for as long as we've known them.

Halloween night was very successful.  My little soldier and storm trooper had a great time knocking on doors.

One more costume was Ashton's Thanksgiving costume.  I told him he was the wrong kind of Indian!  (It's so confusing for us real Indians.  Curse you Christopher Columbus!)

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Happy Trails in the Blues

Last summer the wildfires destroyed a lot of forest in the Blue Mountains, including Jason's deer camp.  So instead of cancelling his annual deer hunt with his Dad and brothers (which was my suggestion), they decided to go up a few weeks early to assess the damage and set up in a new area.  Since it was just a quick weekend trip, I decided to come along since Jason's been bugging me to see how gorgeous the area is and I wanted to ride my horse in the mountains.

We woke up at 3 am to catch and load the horses.  (see, this is half of why I think hunting is miserable), and drove all the way to Dayton before we stopped.  There we purchased breakfast and sandwiches for lunch before heading up in the mountains.  It was a LONG drive before we got to the trail head.  There was hitching posts and feeding troughs for the horses, so we fed them and began packing the saddle bags and barrels with everything they guys wanted to leave at camp and the few supplies we'd need for the weekend.  

That took about an hour.  (More misery)

Then we saddled up the horses and mules (that part is fun), and I got to put a small saddle bag across Aladdin's rear which he didn't seem to mind.  Plus I was able to tie my coat to it and lean back on it when I got tired, which was nice.  I was finally starting to have fun and was itching to get on the trail.  That's why I came after all. 

15 miles, here we come.

I rode behind Jason and his mule so I had a nice view of all three backsides.    
It really was gorgeous, and now I understand why they're called the Blue mountains.  

I love being on my horse, but I have to say, even I got tired an sore before we arrived.  Partially because these guys NEVER stopped to rest,  not even to eat our sandwiches.  It was really fun trying to put mayo on it.

We were ALL ready to get to camp.  The mules literally dropped to the ground the minute they were free of their loads.  

Camp was pretty destroyed, just like the guys had suspected.  We used the broken hitching post, but everything was burned and wrecked.  
We put up a tarp over our sleeping area because it was supposed to rain, but other than that we were just out in the open.  And yes, those are our food boxes right by our heads.  And YES, there are bears in the area.  As the frightened woman they put me in the middle and Jason and Craig slept on the ends with guns.  It was freezing. so I slept in about 3 layers with therma heat pads wrapped around me.
The next day we scouted out a new camping area and then the men went to work making new hitching posts and a ridgepole for their canvas tent.  They also dug a hole and put a barrel full of supplies in it so they wouldn't have to drag so much stuff next time.  

I brought a book to read during all this, so Aladdin and I rode around and explored, or I sat and read.  
It was only 2 nights, and I was glad.  I was cold the entire time and was really roughing it with no bathroom and never changed my clothes (it was too cold!)..... so that was about my limit.  And I think I'll never go again.  The trail was pretty dicey at times with sheer cliffs on both sides for too much of the trail.  I told Jason that it's just a matter of time before someone (or a horse) dies up there.  I'm not exaggerating, it was really scary in some places. 

Jason says he'd rather go up there than go to Hawaii, and now I think he's crazy.  I'll take warm Hawaii any day over this!  

I did get to bond with my horse though--- that was nice.  I love him more than ever now!

Fall Fun

At the end of preschool in May Ashton was given a sunflower seed to plant.  We planted it in a weed patch by the side of the house and then forgot about it. Fast forward several months and I noticed it as I was driving home.  Ash was so happy, it was taller than him!  It was a nice surprise on a day when we needed a nice surprise.

Ash started soccer for the first time and had his two buddies Eli and Eli on his team.  It was a fun first season of soccer.

I couldn't resist taking their photo before school on picture day.  My handsome boys and their dog who waits with them each morning before they get picked up.

I helped out at the Jog-a Thon-- actually I helped out at EVERYTHING last year since Ash was in kindergarten and there was no one left at home holding me back.  It was fun to be at the school a lot and see what the kids and neighbor kids were doing.  Ash got the most laps in his class!  He was pretty beat the rest of the day though.

Ash's kinder class:

I stuck around and helped with McKay's 4th grade class too.  McKay got the most laps in his class too.  They must get the running thing from their dad.  I am a the slowest walk/jogger in the world!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Camping in Oregon for Labor Day

A group of friends and neighbors invited us to go camping in Cascade Locks, Oregon over Labor day weekend.  I love the Oregon forests and all the gorgeous hikes!  We did a 15 miler one day, and although we were exhausted it was incredible scenery.

We were right by the famous Bridge of the Gods, so I insisted we drive across it.  It was probably worth the $2 fee-- very majestic!

Hunter was very concerned that our neighbor, Roxy, was going to wander off.  He was sweet and took it upon himself to be her guardian for the weekend.  

We enjoyed being with our friends, talking and cooking around the campfire and going in search of pretty waterfalls.  

Hunter was happy his best buddy was able to come with us.  It was an awesome time!

Saturday, October 7, 2017

New School Year 2016

Hunter started 6th grade:
All the middle school kids waiting at the bus stop:

McKay started 4th grade:

The elementary kids waiting at the bus stop:

A few days later Ashton started full-day kindergarten.

Here he is with Miss Sassy-pants Maizy.  They were in the same class so they became even better buddies!

He rode the bus to school but I followed and came for the first day ceremony.  The teacher had the parents come for the first 1/2 hour to read "The Kissing Hand" and say goodbye.  

He didn't have any trouble saying goodbye!

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Summer 2016 wrap up

Our neighborhood had a party at Columbia point by the docks, and after a picnic we set up a tight rope over the water.  Hilarity ensued!  No one could make it across the rope without falling in, though many tried.  

Just before school started we took a last minute trip to Lake Chelan with Jason's family.  The cousins won't see each other as much once school starts, so it was a fun last hurrah.

We camped and explored and then took the kids to the water park.

We had one more day with the other cousins too.  We headed to Spokane for one of Alexanders soccer games and ended up playing a little too.

After the game we went for pizza at Blaze (like Mod pizza).

We love our cousins!