Brace yourself…this post is going to be like being invited over to a friend’s house and forced to watch a slideshow of all the fun they had. But, on the bright side, you can just click off here and not have to see it! For those of you who are curious, though (I’m looking at you, grandparents!), here’s a quick recap of our summer o’fun. I’ll be back blogging regularly in a week or so…after the chaos of school starting abates somewhat.
We began summer vacation with Father’s Day gifts…lots of homemade art for the Big Daddy-O!
Then, the very next day, we sent our favorite GI Joe off to work for his last day in uniform after 25 years.
Followed later that week with the official retirement ceremony. Good thing it was near Independence Day, so I could find patriotic gear for the hooligans to wear!
We had a great small-town Fourth of July, watching a parade with friends in the morning, fireworks at home in the evening, then the big show on post to end the night. No one puts on a better fireworks show than the military!
In mid-July, I delivered the oldest kid to his grandma in Oklahoma, and the hubs and I escaped on an Alaska cruise for a week. The two little hooligans stayed home with a babysitter and had fun at a day camp all week.
Some great friends picked us up from the ship, and we all went to a Sounders soccer game…which was all about the food for Princess Thundercloud!
For the second half of the summer, we went on an adventure every Friday. Mt. St. Helens was the first stop, where we almost wore out the seismograph pad, seeing who could create the biggest tremor!
We love the beach and lighthouse at Ft. Worden, just outside Port Townsend on the Olympia Peninsula. Of course, the gymnasts did handstands and cartwheels everywhere we went all summer! (Can you see the two ferries in the background of the handstand photo? Cool, huh?)
In case you think we don’t expose our kids to culture, we did visit the Naval Undersea Museum in Keyport and the Museum of Glass in Tacoma. Okay. so it’s not a lot of culture, but they’re little kids. That cone is supposed to represent a volcano. Maybe Mt. St. Helens, since a lot of glass has been made with that volcanic ash?
We also drank Cotton Candy Limeades at the Spaghetti Factory, repaired the freezer after defrosting it with a hair dryer and hot water in water guns, and practiced handstand pushups.
At the Nisqually Nature Preserve, we were rewarded for a long, hot hike with lots of bird and seal sightings…and wild blackberries for a snack!
The waterfalls and drive along the Columbia River Gorge never disappoint. We’ve even been there in heavy fog when you couldn’t see the long views, but it was still gorgeous hiking the falls trails. This was a perfect day for scrambling over rocks and logs at Oneonta Gorge.
The Bonneville Dam and Fish Hatchery were a perfect way to end the day in the Gorge. The two smaller hooligans and I entertained ourselves while the hubs and eldest went on the dam tour. Mostly by telling lots of bad dam jokes and playing chess. But what a view for a chess game!
The kids went to Splish Splash Camp at the Y this week, so I got some studying done and they became a little bit used to a routine again. They don’t start school until Wednesday, but it’s a rainy weekend here in Washington, so we’re just playing board games, watching movies, and doing some relaxing this weekend. Hope yours is just as rejuvenating!