Tuesday, July 27, 2010

maiden voyage

The kids had fun pretending to be captain's of their own boat in the creek right at our campsite.

string to leigh

We went camping last weekend at the base of the Teton Mountains. We put our canoes in on String Lake and paddled over (with a small poratge in between) to Leigh lake and our campsite, 14A. We were joined by our friends Lauryn, Jordy, and Baby Whit (you should definitly check their site for lots more Schell photos). We had an amazing time. I cannot believe what a difference a year makes as far as the ease of camping. Charlotte fell asleep in the canoe both on the way to the site and on the way home. And she and Timothy were so content and played so well that I should have brought a book to read.
Our campsite was perfect for kiddos; a small stream running through it for play, a sandy beach along the shore for more play, warm mornings and very few bugs. There was a big waterfall not 5 minutes from our site, and pretty big trout in the lake too. This will definitely be a trip we do again.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

just fine

As you can see, the kids were just fine while we were gone. I heard a rumor that mid-week, Charlotte stated she did not want Mama and Papa to return she wanted Granny, Grandpa, and Brook to stay forever. Hmmmmmm, I wonder why???
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our pack trip

We had a blissful, quiet time with each other and four beautiful horses. The fishing was easy and we had 2 dinners of trout. At one point, I got tired of pulling the fish off of my hooks and I just stopped fishing! Pretty unbelievable. There were moments where we lacked anything to do but sit and be quiet.
It was fun to see Reid use skills that I have never see him use (horse-packing), and it was fun to learn from him, and fall in love with him all over again. I loved plodding along on the trail, it was a bit meditative to ride and get lost in the view and the clip-clop of the horses feet. But that moment only lasted a short bit as there were things to do-check to see if the horses still have their shoes, rein Bob in as he is trying to pack and eat again, check the paniers to see if they are riding okay on the pack horses, keep my horse, Rojo (roha) in line as she likes to let her mind wander.
It was just the vacation I needed. Reid's father, Frank. asked when we returned if I was homesick---uuuumm, no. I love those little buggers, but I knew they were just fine.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

we're off

Reid and I are headed out for 5 days on horseback into the Wind's, need I say more :)

segment #11

The last of our vacation pictures. There were so many good beach pictures, and I am sure I will find more to post later-but for now I chose to post some of my favorites. They just feel so pure, and free. Which is the way the beach felt when we arrived each morning at 6 am -the best time to be there!

segment #10..and only one more to go

We finally made it to Charleston on our vacation-first stop, the aquarium. The kids had a blast touching things, and seeing all kinds of creatures. You can see here Timothy's thoughts on the snake (in general he is a bit more hesitant than his sister around animals). And Charlotte found one huge turtle!!
See below for our current goings on :)
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..and now birding

Although fishing was unsuccessful yesterday, we did manage to catch a bird at home--or maybe it caught us??
The neighbors have been feeding this blackbird and it has become very friendly. About 10 or so days ago Reid and I noticed a small black bird (with feathers barely erupting) under our big evergreens. I saw the little guy for several days, and am not one to interrupt natural processes so I left him. I finally lost track of him under the trees and figured he did not make it.
Well earlier this week, Reid noticed our neighbors feeding this little guy (presumably the same one, but who is to say).
Then on Friday, right after putting both kids down for nap/quiet time. I heard this squawking out the back door. I thought it must be an adult bird yelling at my cats for being to close to their nest, and I went out to investigate. Before I even opened the screen door, I saw this bird sitting on the patio, right under (and I mean short pouncing distance!) my sleeping cat-who could have cared less.
I walked out the door and instead of the bird flying away as I assumed it would, it flew right towards me-so I put my arm out and it landed. Well I was shocked, and then realized it must be the bird Reid saw the neighbors feeding.
Boy was it hungry. It downed 3 huge earthworms (that I unfortunately had to cut into pieces) and wanted more. I was pretty sure this guy was going to get gobbled up by one of the cats or the dog, who were all 3 now very interested. But the little one refused to fly off, so I walked him over to the neighbors house and gave them a few quick bird pointers and left. I admit it was a fun experience having it be so tame, but I felt sorry for it and was sure it was a goner as it was spending so much time on the ground and so reliant on humans for food.
Sure enough, it came around yesterday again, asking for food. But this time it was spending more time on low branches in the trees and on our roof. And it again flew right at us, hovered as best it could until Granny (Melody) put her hand out and it landed. Now with the kids awake, and family visiting-it was a fun experience. The little one was hungry again, and we fed it a combo of moistened chicken food and moistened cat food. After about 30 minutes of squawking, eating and hopping from person to person, it decided it was full and flew off. I am am bit more hopeful today that it will survive.
And what an amazing experience for the kids, they both held it, pet it and fed it-I cannot believe how tolerant the little one is. I am sure it will be back today :)
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We got a new boat, and there have been a couple fishing trips made on it already this week.
Reid and I snuck out for a half-day of fishing just the two of us, Thursday morning. The kids were in childcare and I only felt mildly guilty for fishing instead of working. Mostly I felt super fortunate to live in such a beautiful place and have the opportunity to do have fun with my husband mid-week.

On the way up to fishing that morning we passed a truck carrying lamas, I assumed for a pack trip, and I felt for a moment that I was in far away Patagonia. The lake, Worthen, was so quiet mid-week, we were the only boat out there. After many patient hours, I caught 3 trout. The kids had fun checking them out, poking, and giggling. Timothy even asked if he could kiss them--I replied if you want. He ended up deciding otherwise. We cooked them whole in the pan and gobbled them up for dinner.

Charlotte, Reid, Frank (Reid's father), and Brook went fishing again yesterday morning. They had fun and worked very hard, but were unsuccessful. Those trout are wiley, as Charlotte would say. And while they were busy fishing (almost all day), I was at home with Timothy and Melody (Frank's wife) getting ready for my pack trip with Reid. I could not believe how much I am capable of getting done and crossed off my list in one day with one kiddo and an extra set of hands. I am used to working at a snails pace (with 2 kiddos). I felt so prepared by day's end. And I cannot wait to tell you all more about our upcoming trip.

To see more great pictures from their fishing trip, go to my facebook page and look under the photos tab--Melody has tagged some and they should be here to see.
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Saturday, July 10, 2010

segment #9

Dinner on the porch, with friends at Granny and Grandpa's house. Although our friends Beau and Suzanna are cute, their son Deke is adorable!!
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segment #8

A visit to Hendersonville is complete without a visit to the Carl Sandburg home. After a short hike up the hill (or mountain to the folks that live there), we visited the barn with all the new baby goats, had a snack picnic, and headed back down. I was proud of the kids for hiking the whole way up by themselves. We took lots of breaks to check out cool nature stuff-waterfall, tree roots, spiders, and a super neat inch worm.

segment #7

Nothing beats strawberries fresh from the farmer's market.
I forgot what it was like to eat a warm, ripe, fresh strawberry.
One of my favorite treats -I think Timothy agrees.
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Friday, July 9, 2010

segment #6

This is the never-ending vacation blog :) Here is one on the way to Hendersonville.--thrilled.
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Friday, July 2, 2010

segment #5

ahhhhhh, the lake. I think the pictures say it all.

segment #4

Dress-up, dress-up. My mom (aka CG) has been waiting for as long as I can remember to # 1 have an excuse to compile a dress-up box and then # 2 have kids around to enjoy it. Wish granted :)

question to my computer savvy friends

I just got a new computer and am now having trouble viewing some of the pictures and slideshows on the blog. Suggestions???? Grant????? Pat?????

segment # 3

This post could have easily been called, friends and family -or- feeding lots -or- the buffet line -or- summer camp -or- more fun than I have had in a long time.
This vacation was a blast. And being on the lake with 10 adults and 6 kids with more activities than time for was a great way to start it out.
Can you see all 6 kids playing with Grandpa George on the piano? In this shot they all just finished playing --there were 12 hands and 60 fingers on the piano and it actually sounded beautiful.