Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Gold Finches

We had a visitor - or visitors - first it's Emma and Rylee and the other visitor is a chick that isn't afraid of us when we approach! He eats and then sleeps in the bird feeder. It doesn't fly away when we're watering our plants or walking by or even splashing in the hot tub. Emma and Rylee wanted their picture with it - hehe

We were supposed to be working on a talk Rylee is giving in Primary on August 10th, but the hot tub won over as the activity for the afternoon ;)

Other Gold Finches below, I think we've counted 8 or so on this bird feeder at one time! They do not let us approach - LoL
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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Baby Raccoons

We woke up to this commotion on our deck this morning:

A mother raccoon and her 2 babies!

They were very curious about everything they could get their paws on.

They reminded me of kittens (or kids!) wrestling.

Should have videotaped them!
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Sunday, July 27, 2008

Kamp Kitchen

Our Menus were done with the theme Willy Wonka:

All signs that were posted on the bulletin board:

Appreciation notes to the Camp Cooks from the girls & leaders:

Some of the more funny things written:
1. your food rocks, like seriously
2. amazing cookage
3. you've made the best food EVER at Girl's Camp
4. your food is like restaurant food
5. you let us cut to the front of the line if we help in the kitchen
6. you wear the coolest things on your head (which were pink bandannas & orange/pink striped top hats)
7. I'm worried I've gained weight
8. you keep going like AAA batteries (maybe like the Energizer Bunny?)
9. if you weren't cooking, we would have starved!
10. you are all gorgeous (hmmmm, what does that have to do with being grateful for the food? =) )

Totally made the long hours worth it (sort of) to know it was much appreciated! hehe
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Saturday, July 26, 2008

Aprons for the Camp Cooks

The YCL's (5th years) made these aprons for the Cooks at Girl's Camp! Unfortunately, we didn't take 1 photo of our kitchen setup or us while we were cooking, no pics of the food =( There was literally no time to even think about getting the camera out - how crazy is that?!?
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Sunday, July 20, 2008

Girl's Camp

I'm cooking for 150 people from July 21st - July 25th in this facility:
Yeah, that's craziness!! No oven, stovetop or running hot water....
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

How to catch a Blue Jay . . . .

. . . . set a rat trap with peanut butter on it! So, it was supposed to kill the rat we saw eating out of the bird feeder yesterday. I do remember that Blue Jay's love peanuts - they steal them away from the squirrels! We used cheese and did catch the rat =)

Still has the evidence on its beak:

The Blue Jay must have been stunned, it let Jonathan hold it for a few minutes. Then it flew to our neighbors roof and squawked at us. The trap only had its beak and it didn't seem to damage it - must be sore though! We were going to take it to the animal shelter, but it flew away.
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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Flood in our house!

We came home from camping to a flood =( No fun! This forces us to get the remodel done QUICKER - yea!!! It started upstairs and went into 2 rooms downstairs. A big, big mess.
We won't be starting on fixing the house until we get back from Girl's Camp July 26th.
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Monday, July 14, 2008

Fishing & Hiking

The fishing was disappointing, but we did a lot of it anyway =) Fishing licenses for kids are cheap! $13 for the entire year includes salt water and crabbing.
They caught bass and trout - but they were all too small to keep =(

We only had 2 poles, so when we went to the river, Jonathan used his fly pole and everyone was happy.

And what was Cheri doing while the boy's were fishing up a storm? Taking photos of dragonflies of course ;) There were thousands! This one is my favorite:
It was hot where we camped. Supposedly there were caves at Lake Lenore, but do not be fooled! We brought our flashlights, but there were only cavities of rocks that went in a few feet to 10 feet being the deepest, so we didn't even use them. So sad!
Jonathan (blends in with his color of clothes) is at the bottom and Brady is at the top:
The view was beautiful:
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Thursday, July 10, 2008


We're camping July 10th - 12th at Sun Lakes. Check back for photos and stories =)

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Wednesday, July 9, 2008

We built a 16x12 Studio!

We aren't done yet, but it's taking a long, long time to finish with every-day-living putting this project on the back burner! Built it from the ground up - not from a kit ;) It's about 190 SF with 2 closets - it will house my crafts and hobbies. We'll also put the treadmill and weight bench out here with a TV and loveseat. Brady's guitar and Keaton's keyboard will go out here too.

Can lights on the ceiling, still have to drywall it - pain!

Tiled the floor:(will take new photos once it's free from tools and the work is done)

We will be painting our house to match the color of the studio:

A sample of our new windows we'll be installing in the house too - got 23 brand new windows for $500 on Craigslist =)
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Tuesday, July 8, 2008


It's a woodpecker in our backyard. Brady walked right up to it to get a close picture! It was really sweet of it to stay put ;) We usually see the woodpeckers with red on their heads and chest - but those ones are more flighty when we approach. We see lots of birds in our yard, hummingbirds to doves and all wild birds in between. It is fun to see so many aspects of wildlife every day!
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Monday, July 7, 2008

Rustic Star

Saw the cutest idea at Ben Franklin in Monroe and made myself a rustic star out of Stampin Up! paper. I used rub-on words to accent it. You can add photos or whole sheets of paper - I liked part of the star showing through. Kinda looks 'quilted'.
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Sunday, July 6, 2008

Sharing Time

This was for Sharing Time in June, theme was 'I will do family history work so my ancestors can receive temple blessings'. Jonathan's CTR 7 & 8 year old class presented it. We made a family tree and had photos of people on them. The kids got to choose one at a time and on the back it had a way of what they could be doing now to help do genealogy. We had them play Pictionary: example, one was to write in their journals - so the word Journal was printed in blue and the kids had to draw it so the other kids could guess what it was. They emphasized 'My Family is Safe Forever'. On the backs of some of the photos were songs to do with ordinances.

Then the class handed out Pedigree charts for the kids to fill out - if they bring it back all filled out, they could show us and get a small magnet designed by us.

learn stories about your grandparents and other ancestors
write in your journal
talking to, phoning, writing to, or sending e-mails to family members
live the commandments and be worthy to go to the temple
choose the right each day
pedigree chart and family group record
scrapbooks or photo albums
Baptism for the dead - song When Jesus Christ Was Baptized
Confirmation - song I Like My Birthdays
Endowment - song I Love to See the Temple
Marriage and Sealing - song Families Can Be Together Forever
song - I have a family tree
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Saturday, July 5, 2008

Tight Quarters!

We did our best to provide for our cat and even bought her, her very own cat bed. I guess she preferred an 8x8 wicker basket (btw, her bed was plush and this basket doesn't even have a foam bottom)!

Doesn't look comfy at all, but if you can fall asleep in tight quarters, either your limbs are already asleep or you're passed out from exhaustion ;) Some people (animals) will try anything once!
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Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy 4th of July!

What we brought to our 4th of July party, steak:

Red (homemade) Salsa, Blue tortilla chips, White Sour Cream

Big Cookie with Red & Blue M&M's in the dough. Blue Frosting, Red Strawberries with White Coconut - yum!

Whole wheat pretzels dipped in Almond Bark with Blue and Red Sprinkles. I took a photo before they were set and they were gone before I got another pic =(

We watched fireworks in Kirkland - not impressed,
other than being able to see 3 other shows at the same time over Lake Washington. Next year, we're thinking Lake Union!
Last year we watched fireworks in Netarts - Oceanside, OR. It was the best show ever - right on the ocean and directly above our heads.
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Thursday, July 3, 2008

Collage Photo Frame of the boys

Yesterday, I was busy sorting through favorite pictures of the boys when they were little. I scanned the photos, changed the color to sepia on most, then cropped and fitted them, printed out on photo paper and cut to size to fit this collage picture frame I just bought at Michaels with my 50% off coupon. It was an ALL DAY project!

It is both sad and good that they are teenagers now (and over 6 feet)! Lots of cute & funny memories =)
Brady is holding a frog on his thumb - it's so tiny, you can barely notice it.
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Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Who's Living in our Chimney?

Look closely - can you see the raccoon popping its face out of the chimney? Before we grabbed the camera, we couldn't see its face, only its arms and hands. It stretched its hands and was opening and closing one of its paws like it was waving. It waved 4 to 5 times in a row, so cute!

Peeking at us to see if we're still watching it:
We don't use our fireplace, it was boarded up after our power was out for 7 days during the windstorm in 2006 and it didn't provide any heat! We'll replace the wood burning fireplace with a gas one once the remodel is done. I tell my husband we need to call someone and have the raccoons (we shined a flashlight down the chimney and saw 2 more after this one left) removed. He says that the raccoons will now look for a new home because they don't like it when their hideout has been discovered. Hmmmmmm, is that too good to be true? I laughed, but perhaps he is right =)
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Tuesday, July 1, 2008

2 year olds

My friend Christina had her twins yesterday, so Ethan stayed the night at my house. Ethan climbed out of his playpen and upstairs to greet us this morning. I was thinking he wouldn't climb out because he didn't climb out of his crib at home, so I didn't check on him before 7:30 am. I thought for sure I would hear him babbling or crying a bit because he was in an unfamiliar place. What I find in his playpen is Ethan had found something to amuse himself before he got out of bed this morning:
Giant Gumballs! I thought, they look like they're all there, he must have thought they were just toy balls =) Yeah, right - then I found the evidence - a chewed piece of gum sitting in the middle of my hallway (for sure I imagine some was swallowed - sorry Christina!):

This stash is on the table next to the playpen - silly me for not thinking it might not be safe there ;) I am the camp cook and doing all the food (and candy because the theme is Willy Wonka) for Girl's Camp this year.

So, while I'm busy taking photos of the 'cute' gumball incidence, Ethan tells me that the 'medicine' is yucky:

Okay, so honestly, one must keep an eye on a 2 year old AT ALL TIMES! Picture taking of other funny moments must not require turning your back to a child =) As you can imagine, any thoughts of showering before I dropped him off at another friend's house diminished! I would have had to strap him into his carseat inside the house and put on a movie for showering purposes ;) But I decided showering could wait! Good thing the worst drug we have in our house is Pepto-Bismol (but I learned that the main ingredient is aspirin and is dangerous to a child under six if more than 2 tablets {of 262 mg each of Bismuth Subsalicylate} are swallowed)! And even better that it doesn't taste good. I hope Christina forgives me!! On the phone, Ethan tells his mommy that he ate dirt (which he must have at one point in his life to have compared that taste to Pepto-Bismol - LoL) - so while I was laughing (only because I knew I was sorta safe from being a horrible friend because he hadn't ingested even one pill), I didn't want to alarm Christina who's in the hospital less than 24 hours after giving birth to twins and tell her what it was he really tried until after she gets home. I feel bad because now this episode has been logged with Poison Control Center - his name and phone number - SORRY! The one pill he did get a hold of is mostly smeared on his face, shirt and arm. A really good lesson in not trusting those child-resistant lids too! So swallowing gum was obviously the better (tastier) choice ;) Smart kid!
You're calling me right now to watch your kids, aren't you?

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Front Yard Makeover

I am showing one corner of the front yard, not the bundled Christmas lights that were made into flowers, but they did turn out pretty cute!

It is the best before photo we have - too bad, the space was pretty desolate and ugly.
We redid all the landscaping ourselves, moved a lot of stuff from the backyard and bought new things at the local nurseries., &

It was fun and now that it's done, it feels awesome.

Sneak peek of the out-building (studio) we built from ground up too =)

Again, I am not showing anything but the front yard - is the tree on the house a distraction? ;) The tree fell in the wind storm of December 2006 - was craziness! Back to the get an idea of the before:

Yard all dug up (and all those rocks outta there!):

Plant and tree removal:

Finished product:

Side yard that was all trees and dirt before:
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