|Gram's Strawberry Rhubarb, Rhubarb Cinnamon, Strawberry|
|Six Gallons in one picking|
Family and FishingRight before school let out my cousin (Auntie Flip Flop) came for a weekend stay. Really, she was the highlight of June. We just can't get enough of her sunny presence and easy going personality. We went to Soccer Boy's next-to-last soccer game, then took BBQ chicken and Reading Girl's Potato Salad (the winner of our Family Potato Salad Cook off) to our local state park (Trout Pond Recreation Area) for a picnic and a swim. Welcome summer!
The Frontier Culture Museum. The Woodsman and I were still working, so on one of our work days Pap Pap and GeeGee took the kids to Luray Caverns. This is one of their special trips. The kids had been begging to go again for a long time. In between all of that Pap Pap and Soccer Boy got in some serious fishing. We paddled the North Fork of the Shenandoah (A guardian angel must have been with us on that trip - the river was really running high. I thought for sure we would all go for an unintended swim in some very cold water.) They also spent quite a bit of time fishing from on Lake Laura (flatter, safer, calmer, not so hard for the angel).
The day my parents left, another cousin and her family arrived and spent an overnight with us on the way to the beach. The girls had a great time running around playing with the chickens and the rabbits.
Finally, a few days after my parents left our house, we headed their way and spent a day fishing the Raystown Branch of the Juniata in Western Pennsylvania. We stayed at the farm for a visit and family reunion with my Godparents, their children and grand kids.
Over July 4th we headed to PA again and visited with another set of cousins (my "Uncle" J and "Aunt" M). We spent the day with them at Hershey Park. We rode almost all of the coasters, and no one got sick. I must say though, that I enjoy amusement parks so much more now that they kids can ride almost everything without me. There were a few times when I sat out for a needed brain break. Hershey has definitely been the highlight of the summer to date. I think we all could go there once a week.
|Soccer Boy decided it was time for his summer hair cut. Despite my (and his sister's) begging and crying to please, please, keep the curls, he shaved it all off.|
|Breading the fish - flour, salt and pepper|
|A frying lesson from Pap Pap|
|Mittens make good hand protectors when working with hot bubbling oil|
|Happy 69th Daddy! Reading Girl made that cake all by herself. I didn't help a bit.|
|Monkey Berry (blueberry banana) pancakes with a favorite cousin|
|After the first meet.... ribbon showing|
|Next to the last meet - ready to swim|
|Post season pool party with the best coaches in the world. Go Ducks!|
A New CatSo, we had a cat adopt us. I know - it looks just like the other cat. But trust me, it's not. This is Toliver (so named because he was an orphan - like Oliver Twist, but with the T added because the kids thought he was so tiny). He's a real lovey. Twines around your ankles constantly, but he doesn't purr much and he's still very scared of fast movements or loud noises. I think eventually he'll relax.
Home Improvement and Household ChoresWe have...
- redone the kitchen: ripped up the old linoleum (1970s special with olive green and bright orange), scraped and sanded the floor until we thought our arms would come off, peeled off the old wallpaper (more of the 70s show), sanded the walls, spackled the holes, primed, painted, put in new tile and then cleaned, cleaned and cleaned until all of the sanding dust was gone. Finally, we moved all of the kitchen furniture back from its temporary home (in the living room and hallway) to its rightful place in the kitchen, rehung all of the pictures and sorted out all of the mess left behind from two and a half weeks of a non-functioning kitchen and home office space.
- We replaced rotten boards on the deck, then cleaned and re-stained the whole deck.
- We finished several more raised beds in the garden.
- We completed some minor repair on the chicken house.
- We tore up the floor in the master bath and prepared it for a tile job to be completed later in the summer.
- We bought school supplies and got ready for the madness that is September.
- I've deep cleaned, and de-cluttered most of the house. I've managed to take a lot to the dump and the thrift shop, and there's more to go out the door.
- The Woodman has split almost all of the wood on the property - he says he thinks he's set for four years. I told him that's great - now we can travel the next four summers! He didn't answer me - that's a yes, right?
|She did so much better with this stencil project than I would have thought - I actually let her take over after a few practices. I was very willing to get down off the ladder.|