Saturday, February 17, 2018

New Changes!

God once again is moving our family in a whole new direction!
Right before Thanksgiving, we got laid off from the orchard. Such a sad change! We have been in the process of moving into a new house since then. We are mostly moved in and settled down. An amazing couple from our church is renting us an apartment that they built in the attic of their barn, and it is nearly home! So much has happened since I posted last, and there really is no way to get back on track, so I am going to go forward from here. I am excited to get back to posting!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

May 4 - Gabe's Basket Ball Tournament

With a sad, excited heart, we come to the last day of peewee basket ball for Gabe. He has improved so much over the last year, and did fantastic! Ever kid on the court played their hardest and did an amazing job, this was easily the best game any of them had played.

The climax of the day started in the 2nd half of the last game. Blue (Gabe's team) was nearly 20 points behind purple, the kids were so tied and there was lots of emotional stress on the court. Gabe asked his coach if it would be alright if they prayed over the game, his amazing coach went ahead and called a timeout so Gabe could pray over the rest of the game. His prayer wasn't for the Blues to win, but for everyone who was in the gym would go away knowing that this was the best game they had played and that this would be a memorial in the hearts of all the kids. He prayed that God would protect them and give them the drive to do better than they had done all day and for Him to do the same thing for the other team. 

Blue came out with a whole new energy to play and they very quickly made up those lost points, everyone watching was on their feet cheering for both teams! 3 more seconds to the end of the game, Blue had just made a 2 point shot, purple had to make a 3 pointer to win. This little boy who hadn't made a 3 point shot all season had the ball, he was headed back to his basket, but there was no way he could make it to the basket. Someone yelled, "SHOOT!" And he wound up and with one hand catapulted the ball from 3/4 of the court away.

He made it, nothing but net! Easily the best shot I had ever seen. Purple won! And just like Gabe prayed, it was a memorable game! What an amazing way to end peewee basketball!

Monday, July 17, 2017

April 21 - Missoula Children's Theater

If you have never watched or participated in the Missoula Children's theater, you are missing out. We watched it when it came to Spray, OR last October, and it was so much fun! Garrett especially was intrigued by it all, and when we found out it was coming to Monument, Garrett decided to join it. He tried out and was hoping for at least a medium part and got handed one of the biggest parts. The play was a very big spin off of Gulliver's Travels, only in space...and including the force...and stranded with only a computer to help...and teleporters to other planets. It was a lot of fun, Garrett got to play the role of the Computer JCN (pronounced Jason), he did an excellent job. JCN basically was a computer system that broke down at every important moment.

The whole cast did a great job and the play went off great, it was so enjoyable. The two people who put it on from Missoula, Melissa and Terri did an amazing job teaching the kids. They all had a wonderful time!!
JCN and Gulliver just crash landed.

When asked for directions, JCN is computing, computing, Com..pu.iwheerrr.

JCN trying to come up with an answer.

Garrett's Group, JCN, the amazing back stage director and Gulliver.

Thank you Terri and Melissa for all you did for Garrett, he absolutely loved it!!!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

March 31 - April 3 - Trip to Seattle

Since orchard work is about to start with a vengeance, we took a long weekend trip up to visit friends in Washington, originally we planned to go to the tulip festival, but the season is quite a bit later than it normally is so we played to tourist for several days. Now I thought that we had seen just about all there was to see locally when we went up there in August, boy was I wrong, we could fill several visits with things to do there.
The evening we arrived our host took us for a beautiful walk in the wood by their house. At the head of the trail there is a huge stump of a fallen tree that had been logged off. It had holes carved into it for the loggers to stand on. It must have been absolutely magnificent when those trees were standing, and I can't even imagine how much wood came off the tree.
Along the path there was lots of rope course obstacles hanging from the trees, Shea had lots of fun with some of them.

Our hosts very generously played tour guide and took us to go see some daffodil fields which were in full bloom, and Janessa got some amazing pictures!\

The next morning, so April Fools day, they took us up to Seattle and we spent all day playing the tourist. Just about everything you can do for free in Seattle we did. It's absolutely amazing how much you can see of one of the most historical cities in the West United Sates for practically nothing! We had an awesome time! The first stop was Seattle Center, and the Mo Pop museum, which we didn't actually go in, but we had a great time walking around the Center. The first things we saw were theses weird poles that had absolutely no rime or reason to them, but they made a great Photo prop.
 In the center is this huge rope made playground, we had just had a couple of long drives under our belt, so we all jumped in and played in and around the playground for well over an hour. For a couple of us, this was the best part of the trip and for all of us it was in the top 5 best things we did.

And of course, towering over the entire center was the Seattle Needle tower. WARNING! This made a great photo prop, so you'll see it a lot.
We rode the Monorail next, for us country hicks, we all got quite a kick out of it. Gabriel was fascinated with how it drove and asked the driver a million questions.
We had a nice, long walk down town to the library, and Janessa took lots of pictures of the ornamental work on the outside of the buildings.
We walked past a building and staring right at us, was the very odd building! This ladies and gentlemen is the Seattle Library, easily the weirdest building I have ever seen. If any of y'all end up in Seattle, you can't leave until you see the inside of this building.

Janessa took lots of picture of the inside, but I'm only going to use a couple, for two reasons. One this blog post will probably be putting you to sleep by now as long as it is, and two ya'll will just have to come see for yourselves. In one of the many rooms of the library is a map room with the cool globe. We spent quite some time looking at the geography of the history we've been studying in school. It is so neat when you get to see how the shape of the rocks can effect history and often do.
 The colors in this place are absolutely amazing, and the many escalators to get up to the top floor were painted in this poison green color.

Back down to the Center after that to see the Fountain and eat lunch. When I was told we were going to watch a fountain, I had the idea of a classic fountain in my mind, let me tell you, there was nothing classic about this fountain. It had the most random way of spraying, and everyone was trying to time it so they could touch the fountain without getting wet.

We were all running out of gas about now so we slowly started back toward the car, but we did take time to get some pictures of the group at the base of the tower.
 At the base of the tower is a museum and the 4 corner posts of the museum are the legs of the tower. Shea made a really nice effort to unscrew the 12 inch bolt of the tower, but even with all the leverage that he has, it didn't do any good, made for a funny photo though.
 On the way out, this man waylayed us with his constant banter and balloon creations. He had us all mesmerized for quite some time.

Such a fun day, filled with memories!!

Sunday, April 30, 2017

March 10 - First Real Work Day

This hard winter has really been a mixed blessing for us, we have really hit school hard, but let me tell you, we were ready to get out and about on a nice day! Today we all headed down to the orchard and worked on the south pump and multiple other projects that have needed attention (like Conrad proofing his pen :).
Daddy had hired a skid steer to do some digging today, almost all of us got to learn how to drive it.
 This is what our river screen looks like out of water. We will probably put it in the river in a month or so.

 Azure spoiled us this year, and now we have a new forklift, since both of our old ones went down last spring. We are so pleased to have it!!
 Gabe's new purchase is a Go-Cart from his cousin, Royal. It needs a little work, but he learned a bunch getting it fixed, and it will be such an amazing tool this summer for him.

Gabe's Week-long Birthday

For one reason or another, Gabe's birthdays seem like they either go on for days or they get postponed for days. This year is no exception. The reason for this year's crazy long birthday was mostly because Gabe's heart is so big that he didn't want anyone to miss out on a birthday party. Our church was having a cleaning day, to clean out the attic of our church building, which has had bat problems. Gabe wanted to postpone his birthday so that all of his friends could share his cake with him. So on his birthday day all he wanted to do was play a huge, long game of Blind Man's bluff, which was a blast!
 Janessa surprised him with a new game that he has been wanting for a long time, so we ended the day with everyone playing Bonanza, and learning his birth story again. Super fun day and 11 years went by far too fast!!
A little over a week later was the cleaning day. All the men worked so hard getting that attic cleaned out, while the women prepared the meal and the kids took over the gym for a couple hours. It really was a great day for everyone involved!

Janessa, as always, did an amazing job with his cake! 
All of the men that work in the orchard absolutely love Gabe and how much boldness he has, so they bought a Remote Control Truck for their "el nino's" birthday. So Janessa used that truck as her model for the cake.   

Since orchard season is about ready to get underway again, we took this weekend to take a good family fun day. Gabriel chose to go bowling, which we haven't done since we went with GRACE Homeschool group in Texas.

 In the bowling alley there was an arcade! So we all had to try everything.

We spent the night in an hotel, where Gabe opened his gifts, one of which was a basketball. He is playing Pee Wee Basketball this year and wanted lots of time to practice up for that.

And when we got home the evening of the next day, our mountain was covered in snow again...the last big snow of the year.