Tag Archives: activities with kids

Camping at Honeyman State Park + House Hunting


This past week, we camped at a place we had never gone before–Honeyman State Park.  We had fun, but ended up driving all the way back to Salem one day.  I think it was worth it, as we were having an inspection done on a house that I THINK we may actually get!!!

Of course, this is the campground the farthest from “home” we have been at all summer.  So, we drove and drove.  We had just remarked before we left that this would be the first time all summer that we got to go camping and stay there, since Ft. Stevens at the beginning of the summer.

We are heading off to volunteer for the next week at a camp where there is no cell reception, unless you climb to the top corner of the property, we have been told, and certainly no internet.  So, expect that I am saving money by staying in one place for more than a day and I’ll post again once I return home.  So, I think once we get there today, we will be set to stay put until Friday.  We will be cooking, so will be busy, but it won’t involve driving!!!  Famous last words:)

Once we get back, we will have an electrician and plumber both look at a couple areas of concern on the house we hope to buy, and anticipate that the issues revealed by the inspection will be easily resolved.  If so, we can proceed with the process and buy the house!!!  So, hopefully, good news to come soon!

Oregon Trail–Blue Mountains


We have had a wonderful trip over to Eastern Oregon visiting our friends.  On our way, we stopped at a place we had not stopped before–the Blue Mountain Crossing of the Oregon Trail.  We got off of I-84 and followed the signs to the “Oregon Trail Park.”

There was a nice paved trail and it led to these ruts.  It absolutely blows me away that these are the remains of the actual Oregon Trail.  So many years later, the gouges in the soil remain. At some places, trees have grown up into the ruts, but this was one of the most clear spots I’ve seen.


There were informative signs, giving details and diary entries from people who had crossed this place.  It amazes me to see the terrain they had to cross.  It amazes me when I think of the stamina and sheer grit it took to travel 2,000 miles toward an unknown destination.  They got to see marvelous views, such as this one, but I felt spoiled at the ease with which I was able to arrive at this spot on the hike.

After taking the kids on the short, 1/2 mile trail, we returned to our road trip.  Hopefully, they have caught a bit of the wonder of that epic journey and  share at least a little of my amazement when I ponder the achievements of those brave pioneers.

I can’t help comparing my camper life to the journey of these pioneers.  It makes my journey seem less daunting, when I compare it to theirs.  In fact, it makes a lot of things seem downright easy.  I’ll try to remember this the next time I have a grumpy moment over a missing jar of tomatoes, or have to live without my crock pot:)  I’ll just have to look back and remember this arduous mountain pass, and remind myself, “Relax.  You have air conditioning, a soft bed, a car engine that works and plenty of food.”  A better life is worth a struggle.  It was then, and it is now.  It’s all in the attitude.

Dance Recital


The girls had their dance recital on Saturday.  It was lovely.  Grandma and Aunt Janet were able to come and watch, too.

I took some pictures ahead of time.  They will have photographs taken at the studio next Thursday.

They were in one dance together.  It was called “Rotten To The Core.”  They had fun with it, and I’ve had fun teasing them about the title.


Ja’Ana was in one dance with a bunch of her friends.  It was called “Dear Mr. President.”  J has been out of dance for a few years, and of course, Patsy has had very limited experience with it, so I’m super glad they had this opportunity for the past year.  We like this studio, and  will be sad that we are not able to continue next year, but we will live too far away.

Even though our lives are a bit complicated right now, we were able to fully enjoy their recital, and I think they did, too.

Under the Umbrellas–Spring Break 2016


Spring vacation here in Oregon was very rainy!   Lovana was working quite a bit, so hung around with us for one night, then went to stay with Grandma in town.  Ja’Ana was with us for the first part of our camping trip.  Then, she went on her long-anticipated mission trip with her youth group.  Patsy was stuck with us for quite a bit of the remaining time.  She was not sorry to be an only child for a few days:)  We wanted to give her some special attention no matter what the weather.  So, we did quite a few things under our umbrellas!

The first place we went was Detroit Lake State Park.  We went camping and had a couple of nice days during the first part of our trip.  We came down the mountain a couple of times for a 4H event and Sunday for church.  When we went camping again for a couple of days, the weather turned to rain, rain, and more rain.  IMG_2286

Patsy wasn’t convinced that  a hike in the rain would be fun.  In fact, she was pretty resistant to the idea.  She was enjoying her crafts and books inside the cozy camper.  But we wanted to get out and get some exercise!  When we were done, she told me it was a LOT more fun than she thought it would be.  I’m glad she enjoyed herself.  It was a nice hike, in my opinion.IMG_2281

The lake and forest have a beauty during the rain that is different, but still lovely to me.


When zoo day came, there were no more protests about going out on a rainy day.  The zoo is a place Patsy has not been to for several years and she has been wishing to go.  So, we went, and had a wonderful time.IMG_2327

The rain came and went.  We didn’t see all of the zoo, but did make it to most of the animal exhibits.  We had to leave, as it was closing, but will go back another day.

We didn’t use our umbrellas every day.  Patsy and I went to the mall on Thursday.  After trying on a LOT of clothes, she was able to choose the perfect dress.  We are anticipating that we will get a call from a lawyer or the state within the next month or two, giving us a date to appear before the judge and finalize her adoption.  For all of the other girls, I have sewn dresses for their adoptions.  This time, with so many things packed up in the basement in anticipation of moving and the extra work involved with moving, I can’t be sure I will get any sewing done.  So, we bought one, and put it in my closet, so there will be no pressure on the big day, no matter what the circumstances.

So, that was the first time I had ever taken her to mall by herself, and we enjoyed ourselves.  In fact, we so rarely go, that I think it’s only the 4th or 5th time I’ve ever taken her.  We got her some jeans and a couple of clearance items she could use along with “THE DRESS”, some tops for me, our piece of See’s candy, and ate lunch there.  Finally, she asked to go home.  It was overwhelming for her, as it’s very rare, and she was tired.  So, we went home, tired and happy.

Now, she has the yucky cold that I’ve had all week, so she’s just watching movies that we got at the library this morning.  The other girls will all be home by tonight, so her special time is over.  Hopefully, she will have some good memories to treasure.  I know I do.