Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Summer So Far

We are 9 weeks into summer break and I have yet to post anything.  So here is a summary of our summer so far.

This is the first summer since I returned to work back in 2014 that we have not had any kind of nanny or childcare and it has been going really well.  Paul has most Mondays off, I work from home 2 days a week and the other 2 days the girls are home alone all day, except I go home for lunch and check on things.  The only negative is that with no one there to take them places or force them to do otherwise, they end up spending WAY too much time on their phones/computer.  Even when I’m home I’m working so it’s still hard to steer them in another direction but I try.  They do occasionally go to the park, ride their hover boards or skate boards, bake, paint, organize something, build a fort, etc., but not enough.

At the end of June we had a family reunion with my Dad’s side of the family at the family farm up in Mount Vernon (my brother and sister-in-law live there now but it started out as my great-grandparents and then my grandparents.  It's my dad's childhood home, pretty cool!).  We drove up on a Saturday morning, visited my mom first (she’s in an Alzheimer’s care facility) and then went to the reunion Saturday afternoon into the evening, spent the night at my Dad’s and then went back to the farm Sunday morning for breakfast before heading home.

Kids riding the tractor train

My and my brothers and some cousins

Everyone (who has one) brings their RV and parks in a field

Kids on a bouncy house

Olivia and Kayley on a tractor

Vintage gas pump on the farm

On the 4th of July we did our typical get-together with some friends at their house down the street.  The kids are all old enough now to light their own fireworks so the adults just sit back and drink and watch (and supervise).  Then we all go to the neighborhood fireworks show at a local park.

The next day we left for Crescent Bar and stayed until Monday (we have learned never to come home on a Sunday—traffic is a nightmare).

A little fork in the Columbia River that goes behind our condo

The condos with the basalt cliffs behind

Kona playing with a stick in the water

Later in July Paul and our friend John took the girls and John’s daughter Lindsay to Crescent Bar for a Dad/daughter weekend.  I had most of that Saturday and Sunday morning to myself to work on some projects but it wasn’t even close to enough time.  Then on that Sunday my best friend Kristen that I’ve known since Kindergarten and her son stopped by on their way back from visiting another friend and we all hung out and visited with our friend Jen (the same friend we (Paul and I and the girls) spend the 4th with.  I introduced them on the cruise we all went on back in 2017 and now they are friends so whenever Kristen visits me we visit her too.

At the end of July we had another family reunion, this time with my mom's side of the family (except my mom wasn't there as mentioned above she is in a Alzheimer's care facility).  And this one was just an afternoon, not a whole weekend.  But I got to see a bunch of cousins that I hadn't seen in years, in some cases since I was too young to remember.  And we also met some of their kids and grandkids.  I didn't get a whole lot of pictures that time, just a few of a few aunts and uncles.

On August 3rd we went to my niece's wedding reception (she got married last September in a very private backyard ceremony).  She is the last of all my niece's and nephews to get married.  It's so weird that they are all married.  They shouldn't all be old enough yet!  But alas, the youngest is 28.

Grandpa Don (my dad), Kayley, Cousin Taylor, Olivia.  Grandma BJ (my stepmom) in red in the background and my head hidden with a floral arrangement above Olivia.

Olivia and Taylor

We went to Crescent Bar again last weekend.  Paul's parents have gifted us their condo and we had to sign some paper work and it officially became ours yesterday!  The dues are astronomical, so we will be renting in out to cover that but with any luck we will actually make a little money but probably not much.  But we have a vacation condo that didn't cost us anything, so yay!

Those black specs in the middle are the girls and Kona

Bubble gum ice cream from the local shop

I am on PTO this whole week.  I've been wanting to take a whole week of PTO in the summer ever since I started working again 5 years ago but I always have to save it for family trips and when the girls are sick and what-not.  I finally have enough saved up that I was finally able to take a week off and just STAY HOME!  Except yesterday we were still at Crescent Bar but that's it.  Today I had 2 appointments so we didn't do much, tomorrow Olivia has a cooking class from 10-3 (not all of that will be cooking), Thursday I plan to take them school shopping and Friday is wide open so we'll see.

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