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Wednesday, July 5, 2017

We started off the month celebrating Emily's graduation.  She graduated with honors after taking honors classes all 4 years.  She graduated with all A's for all four years except for one C her freshman year.  WOW!
She walked with her best friend, Allison.  They met in kindergarten and have been best friends ever since.
I can't believe that it is even possible that a high school in Oregon would consider an outdoor graduation in June!  And so of course it rained.  And if you were not sitting in the back row, you were not allowed to use an umbrella.  
How is it that each couple that posed for a photo with her had the man and woman on the same side?
Bonnie and I went shooting a day.  I can not believe it!  Before I even took one photo, I realized my camera battery was dead.  That has never happened to me before.  My spare one was at home on the charger.  So I spent the day taking photos with my cell phone.  I actually was pretty happy with how they turned out.  Cell phone cameras have really improved. This is the Clackamas River, just out of Estacada.
 With school out, we get to spend extra time with the 3 kids.  They are sure making good use of the little cars.
The girls love playing dress up.  They are making great use of the costumes their Mommy used to wear for her dance classes.  Sure am glad I saved them.
We strapped on their water tanks and had a water war.  Not really fair, though, Grandpa used the hose! They thought they were pretty clever hiding under his truck.   They didn't come with their swim suits, so I let them strip to underwear, so ignore that part.
Then they gave me a pedicure.
 When I was little, my very favorite toy was my Barbies.  We had a Barbie Theater and it was the best time ever playing fashion show with the theater with my cousins, Debbie, Sandy and Allen.  Well, the theater was falling apart, but I have cherished it (and all my Barbies and the clothes my Mother sewed by hand for them) and moved it from home to home through the years.  Jessi, being an only girl, just really didn't get into playing with it.  I did my best to hook Emily, but still, just one girl, it didn't catch.  I spent a day last week, taping and putting it all back together almost as good as new.  To my amazement,  I pulled it out to show Arianna and Lina.  They loved it.  Even Josiah took his turn with the boy doll on stage.  It was so fun reliving my Barbie Theater days with them.
 I am not the only one loving the flowers in the yard. If you look at the bottom right photo, you can see some red carnations on the ground.  A little bunny has decided to pick them for me.  I don't know why he just nibbles them off and leaves them laying, I thought that he would eat them.

 I decided that we needed to cover the dirt pathway at one side of the yard with rock to match the other pathways around the place.  I put in a little pad for a chair and now have a perfect view of the river.  The view for my morning latte.
 When we first moved here, I loved the colors on the walls and didn't think I would need to paint.  But little by little I have been making it my own.  I painted the family room and kitchen before Christmas. The guest rooms suddenly got to be so dark and heavy.  I did the dark brown room a nice sunny yellow.  I found a pretty ocean green that is almost a blue for the other guest room.   The gold is what was in the guest room. Even the ceiling was gold.  They rooms look so amazing now.  As soon as I got them done, then the guest bathroom looked so dark that I had to go get paint and get it done too.  There was so much paint left that I used it to paint the laundry room and I still have paint left.  
Before and afters
 Guest rooms  (we even made the headboards for the yellow room) (check out my Barbies on the wall)
 Guest bathroom
 laundry room
June 22 marks 43 years since we got married.  I heard that Cannon Beach has a rock where puffins nest.  A few people I know from Flickr have posted some amazing shots of them.  I have wanted to see them, so we went to the beach for a couple of days.

Well, I was pre-warned by one of my Flickr contacts that they are way up in the rocks and it is difficult to get a good shot.  He was so right!  They have short little wings and fly erratically, so it was like tracking a mosquito.  My shots just cracked me up!  He is a little collage of my puffin tracking skills.  some of my shots didn't even have a bird in them.
The best shot I got were these two.  Neither one is anything to show off, I am only posting them to mark the event.

It was really mesmerizing watching them fly back and forth from the rocks to bring food back for their young.  It was like watching a beehive. After realizing that the perfect shot was not going to happen, I just enjoyed the view instead.
And here is what 43 + one for the year to come look like.
And this is what they look like less than a week later because of the heat wave we had.
The day we arrived to the beach, we received a phone call from John's brother's wife that Bobby had been to the doctor for a check-up and the doctor had sent him from Lake Havasu to Las Vegas to the hospital.  The hospital in Lake Havasu was full and he needed in asap.  The next day Bobby called and said they were doing some tests and pictures.  He said things didn't look too good for him, that he probably only had months left. A year ago, he had a heart attack, the result of too much alcohol and cigarettes.  Well, by Saturday, he asked John to contact his family and let them know that he had very little time left. Instead of months, he had only days.  It was shocking to see how fast it all happened.  From the time we had the first call, it was only a week and he was gone.  He was the baby of the family. So sad to have him gone.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

May just blew by too fast!  A lot of activities, but mostly I spent time enjoying working in my yard.  I find myself a little irritated at the end of the day if I have not had a chance to get out there and do something.  It isn't like there is a ton to do, it is pretty much in shape, but no matter what, when I go out there to do one thing, it is hours later and and a full trash bin. Here are a few photos of my flowers for the month.

   As for activities, I took the kids to see the shows that I bought them tickets for at Christmas.  PINKALICIOUS was for Arianna.
 ROBIN HOOD for Josiah.  Both were so fun.  I know for sure that this is the kind of gift I want to keep giving the kids.  Making memories is way better than just another toy.
Bonnie and I took a drive up to the Hood River area in search of barns and blooming orchards. It was a little late in the blooming season, but we managed to find some pear blossoms.

 Mother's Day with Mom and Lindy and Cyndi
I took a drive to Salem to see the older two grandkids.  Emily drove us to dessert in her OWN CAR!  Now that is unreal to have my grand-daughter not only driving, but owning her own car.
 We finally had some sunny days to enjoy playing outside with the 3 local grand-kids. So happy that at least one of my kids decided to live close to me.

 I bought a little teepee and set it up in one of the flower beds.  I plan on hiding surprises in it for the kids to find.  I write a message on a note and Josiah reads it and off they go in hunt of their surprise.  Some days it is a little toy, other days a snack or lunch.
 One day, John discovered a tiny little baby chipmunk int he garage.  No idea where its mommy was, so he set it free in the yard. Later on, I found another one.  I took it outside too.  The next afternoon, the kids and I found 5 more!!!  They were too tiny to be afraid and let us hold them and play with them.  We fed them thistle seeds.  We had no idea if a mommy was around or not.  The kids were overnight that night. Sadly, the next morning when we went out to see them, the cat had put an end to 4 of them and had them proudly on display on the steps.  Not sure what happened to the 5th.  I am hoping he got out to find his other 2 siblings.  The kids helped me bury them.
 It is always fun to have the kids overnight.  Their request for breakfast was two pancakes with a sausage in the middle.  I told them it was called pig in a blanket.  They liked that.  I made them a couple of pig pancakes too.  Arianna is playing with one of the dolls that Jessi used to play with.  Baby That-a-way.  Don't you just love her morning hair?
I have a really pretty humming bird at my feeder all day every day.  I have seen them before, but never for very long, this one is constant.  He is not as greedy as the Annas hummers, who mark their feeders and guard them from any other hummers.  This guy is happy to share, even with the Annas.  He is a Rufus humming bird.
It was a pretty rainy month, so I put the rainy days to good use and recovered my patio cushions.  Also, I painted a rocker that we got for free from a neighbor who was moving.  It was brown and no varnish left on it. I had no idea it was as dry as it was.  It soaked up 9 cans of spray paint!  3 primer and 6 top coat!
I also decided that we needed to add to our little kid cars.  A few years ago, I bought a 4 wheeler from a neighbor's garage sale for $25.  It needed a battery.  Then we had to put on a new pedal.  Last summer, it gave up high speed, so I tore it apart and discovered it needed new gears.  I found them online and was so pleased with myself with my mechanical skills.  I think I may become a mechanic!  I installed the new gears and it runs perfectly now.  So wanting another vehicle for the kids, I went on Craig's List.  I found a little car for $50, battery and charger.  When I went to the home to get it, she mentioned that she had another one.  I asked to see it.  She said if I wanted it, I could just take it for free!  It was so dirty and only would go backwards.  But we brought them home and I spent a few hours cleaning it.  It was full of mud.  Once clean, it was still all faded from the weather.  I knew it would be a battle over who had to ride the old car. So I bought a can of purple glitter paint, taped it all off and sprayed it.  I again was pretty impressed with my body work skills.  Who would have thought I could be a mechanic and a car painter too?  And guess which car they all want to drive?  yep!  Pretty good deal.  Two little cars, including batteries and chargers for $50.  Plus an $8 can of paint.  Oh, and the only going backwards part?  Well, Josiah was sitting there fiddling with the shift and suddenly it went forward and has been doing great ever since!
And suddenly it was the end of the month and promotion time again. Arianna is headed for kindergarten next year.
 Josiah had a little graduation from kindergarten and heads for 1st grade in the fall!