Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Helping Hands

Last night Hayley and her friends Savannah and Maddy volunteered to help the Kiwanas with a back to school backpack program.  We helped them set up an assembly line of donated school supplies prior to the actual event and then we helped pass out the items (paper, notebooks, erasers, pencils, markers, etc.) to all of the other volunteers who went down the line and filled the actual bags up.  It was quite the production and it was so nice to see so many people (including a lot of teenagers) volunteering their time for such a worthy cause.  I was very proud of the girls...
The finished product:  400 backpacks stuffed with everything an elementary school and middler schooler needs to start their school year!

Monday, August 23, 2010

What I've Learned So Far

1.  There's nothing more gorgeous and delicious than a tomato that you've grown yourself.
2.  Stake your peas and beans shortly after you plant the seeds because once they start to come up they are searching for something to wrap their amazingly strong tendrils onto.  If there's no stake available, they will cling to each other and it's difficult to unwrap those sticky tendrils and redirect them.
3.  Pea and Bean tendrils are incredibly strong!
4.  Too much rain is not necessarily a good thing.  More than 2/3 of what I originally planted was drowned out by all of the spring rain.
5.  More is not always better.  When Luke and I were planting, if the package said to plant 4 seeds in a hole we thought that maybe 6 or 7 would really insure that something would grow.  Well, because of this over-planting we learned about thinning which we apparently didn't do quite good enough because our radishes didn't mature proprerly.
6.  Patience is a virtue.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Local Goods

Lovely morning spent at the Kent Farmer's Market...

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Sun, Water, & Friends...

Today was an awesome day!  There's no better way to spend a sweltering summer day than on the boat with good friends.  Even though Lake Sammamish was very rough it still felt wonderful on this 95 degree day.  We did a little swimming and a lot of tubing... a good time was had by all.
McKenna and Scott.
Payton and Hayley.
Luke just lettin' it all hang out!
Staci and Payton.
My little monkey-dog, Poppy.
The Deti's and the Berkeley's.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Belated Birthday Celebration

Luke turned nine while we were on vacation in LA last month.  He had an awesome birthday celebration (inflatable waterslide included!) at my sister's house and a couple of days after that we went to Legoland for the day.  Even with that Luke was pretty insistent that he be able to get together with two of his best buddies when we returned home, so today was that day!  Luke's description of his perfect celebration was having lunch at Blue C Sushi and then going to the Lego Store with Noah and Skyler.

The boys had a blast at Blue C Sushi.  They loved pulling their plates off of the conveyor belt and watching hilarious anime cartoons on the wall.  I was very impressed with their adventurous palates!  Can you say raw tuna?  :)
On to the Lego Store at Bellevue Square.  The boys had fun loading up their containers with a wide assortment of lego pieces.  The challenge was trying to cram as many pieces into the container while still being able to have the lid connect in some way to the base!  I kept adding the tiniest pieces to their containers and they kept saying they had enough and I kept saying that there was more room to squeeze some in at the bottom.  I wish I would've taken a picture of the containers when we were done with them because they were so full that the lid was merely balancing on the top of a mound of legos.  The salesperson had to tape the lids on... gotta get our money's worth!  :)  
Decisions, decisions...
We ended the day with some Red Mango yogurt and with the boys playing cowboys and injuns outside in our beautiful backyard/forest! 

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

I'm Baaaaaaaack... along with 25 pounds of blueberries!

I haven't blogged in two months!  I can't believe how time flies... I have really missed documenting our family life through my blog.  We've had a fantastic (and incredibly busy) summer so far, but I could just not get it together enough to stay up to date on my blog.  Every few days or so I would think that this was the day that I would catch up on our story, but it just never happened!  I think it was difficult because our days were so unstructured and each day was different...  Anywaaaaaay, I'm going to try to get back in the groove here. 

Thanks to my friend, Dawn, I was reminded about Canter-Berry Farms in Auburn.  Luke and I went on Monday evening to pick some blueberries and we just had a lovely time picking about 9 pounds of gorgeous, delicious berries!  We enjoyed it so much that we went back the following evening with Hayley and Wes.  The berries were only two dollars per pound and they allow you to eat as many of them as you want while you're picking!  I think we got our money's worth! 

Each bush was crazy loaded with berries!  It made picking them fast and easy.
Our technique for thorough collecting:  Wes got the top of the bush and Luke gathered down low.
I forgot to ask the owner exactly how many bushes they had, but just to give you an idea... we were in row number 34 and each row probably had 30 bushes each.  If I had to guess, I would say that there were probably over 100 rows!  The bushes are around 60 years old!
Because they don't use chemicals of any kind, once we got home we hand picked through each and every berry to make sure that there weren't any worms or bugaboos.  Then we laid them out flat on cookie sheets and froze them.  The whole process took us a few hours!