Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Zoo Trip - September 11, 2009

So with all the big kids in school, Mandie and I went to the zoo for the member preview of their Predators of the Serengeti. A million other people had the same idea. We had to park in "outer limits" and the place was a "zoo"!!!

We went early but it got hot very quickly. Here
Hayden checks out a turtle.

These are the statues at the opening of their new exhibit. The lions haven't been around for awhile. Hayden feels the teeth on the male while....

...Lorien takes a ride on the female, then sits with the baby lion.

Some of the exhibit wasn't finished and a few animals hadn't arrived yet. Of course, the whole thing was supposed to open in July so they are way behind schedule. The cheetah and the wild dogs were very visible.

Hayden gets a hug from the only lion we saw. The real ones were hiding in the shade, no where to be seen. We'll have to go again when it's cooler - and don't have to park so far away.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Labor Day Weekend 2009

Okay, so I'm a little slow. But it took me forever to sort through all the camping pictures deciding which to include here. These are just a FEW of them (as if I had to tell you!).We went to Lower Falls for Labor Day weekend. It's always interesting comparing pictures of these falls at different times of the year. In July it was MUCH fuller which is unusual even then except for the heavy snowpack we had this year.

Did I mention there was rain in the forecast? We come prepared and have a good time anyway. In this picture is Jeff, Jon's parents, Mandie & Jon, Aubrey. Phil with his back to us and a little snack thief, Mitchell!

This is a place called Tire Junction. The first time we found this place, we had been driving all over gravel logging roads and suddenly came out onto asphalt. This is a place where 3 "main" roads converge, one leading to Trout Lake. The "planting" in the middle is quite pretty with wildflowers in the spring. Many logging roads lead off these roads and I try to mark on the map all the ones we've taken.

This is Langfield Falls. It's not too far from Tire Junction. It too has varying amounts of water flowing depending on the time of year. Feel free to ask me about my ghost story from this place!This is Dave Senske, Tyson & Jen Candland, Lynn Senske and Lorien. (Jon's parents, sister & her husband.) They came up from Utah to go camping with us and have Hayden's birthday. We taught the desert people how to camp in the great NW - complete with rain. In return they did my dishes in their trailer!Aw, breakfast with grandpa! Looks like Lorien is hungry.Hayden got to celebrate his 5th birthday while we were camping. Mandie forgot candles so we used matches instead. I believe I had to do that for one of our daughters birthdays!!!By our second evening Becky's & Jeff's families had joined us. Becky's tent became the "All Girls, All The Time" place. Cousins Kaylee, Grace & Larissa slept together in Becky's tent. What a hoot when they discovered they all had bought the very same sleeping bags - pink, of course. The next evening Becky went home but her tent became a place to play in the rain and the mattress became - bet you can guess - a trampoline. Boy did the kids love that.

Okay, so you get a sunbreak and take off for a hike. If you're prepared, no big deal. Here grandpa shows Kaylee & Jesse how to count rings on a freshly cut tree. Lots of them had to be cut this year from across the trail.Ooops! They missed one. Jen & Tyson first, then Kaylee, Becky & Aubrey go over, while Jesse goes under.This is Mitchell at Taitnapum Falls. (Don't ask me how to pronounce that!) This is Upper Falls. All these falls are on the Lewis River.Did I mention the rain? Did it bother the kids? Not one bit. While the grownups pack up to go home (a day early) Larissa roasts a marshmallow while Jesse & Hayden play in the fire.
Jon has made a tradition of making a totem out of a stick and whatever else he can find. This was the one from this trip - complete with roasted apple head on top. Suppose to keep the evil spirits away. Too bad it didn't keep the rain away. But we all had a good time anyway.