Friday, June 9, 2017

Our Grand Adventure

At the beginning of the week just before Memorial Day weekend, I was looking at the calendar and realizing that our summer festivities didn't leave us much free time over the next few months. Between the upcoming Zambia trip, Summer Stock, Ragnar, family visiting, our church Rock the Block, a vacation to Yosemite, work, and Sarah's trip to the Christian athlete leadership conference....well...I just didn't know when we would do anything "just the six of us." So I got out my "bucket list" to see if there were any feasible local adventures we could have as a family for just one day.

The weather was looking to be quite warm, so it had to be mountains or water. We came up with a plan...leave early in the morning and catch the 8:45 ferry from Coupeville to Port Townsend. Due to tides (really low tides mean fewer ferry runs and we wanted to be at the beach during low tide), cost, and the fact that it was Memorial Day weekend, we decided to park and leave our car at the ferry terminal and walk on the ferry. There's basically no limit to the number of walk-on passengers allowed on the ferry.

The maps said it was just under a 2 mile walk to Fort Warden State Park, which I wanted to see, and a little farther walk to North Beach & Glass Beach, which was on my bucket list. I figured we walk a while, spend a little time on the beach, get lunch, and take the ferry back. Well...the plan turned out FABULOUS except for one little detail I failed to notice...the elevation. Almost the entire 2 mile walk to Fort Warden State Park was uphill. And then there was more uphill to get to the other side of the park to the beach. And then some downhill and then some more uphill. And then finally beach walking. Suffice it to say, we were QUITE sore the few days following this adventure - we walked almost 11 miles either uphill, downhill, or on the beach! - but I wouldn't trade it for ANYTHING! We had such a great day and absolutely perfect weather. It was SO beautiful out and we just enjoyed God's creation and each other.

The first set of pictures are from my iPhone and the second set are unedited pictures that Sarah took on the good camera.

^^Hiking up Artillery Hill at Fort Warden...looking through the trees to the lighthouse, the water, and Mt. Baker

^^Memory Monument - a place on the trails at Fort Warden with poems and sculptures and things in memory of the soldiers who were stationed there, commissioned with keeping Washington safe.

North Beach & Glass Beach - supposedly you can find lots of beach glass here, which is why I wanted to go. It once was the site of a city dump, but was eventually released into the ocean, which is why there is lots of sea glass. Problem's VERY tiny, which I didn't know before we went.

^^A few of the treasures I found at Glass Beach. Later, walking along Fort Warden State Park beach, south of the light house, north of Port Townsend, I actually found MORE sea glass than I did at Glass Beach!

And now for Sarah's unedited (because I don't have time to edit) good camera pics...

Waiting at the ferry dock

In Port Townsend

We spent a fair bit of time exploring the old concrete bunkers. Such a fun place!

Walking downhill to the beach

Off to explore tide pools - we made it there right at low tide!

^^At Fort Warden State Park - a beautiful beach with a touch tank marine center and not crowded!

An item checked off the bucket list. Memories made. The end.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Most of May

I think the two pictures of Sarah are actually from April...First is when Grandpa Freeman visited her at Calvin over her birthday weekend! So great for them to see each other again!

Below is a picture a track friend took when Sarah ran at the legendary Hillsdale meet. I so miss watching her run, but at least she always texts me to tell me how it goes!

Bethany ran track also and her last meet was technically in April because she was a counselor for 6th grade outdoor education over the last regular season meet, which was in the beginning of May. 

It was teacher appreciation week at the beginning of May and the parents outdid themselves this year! All the doors were decorated (SO CUTE!) and we had tons of goodies and treats and gifts and flowers and food and coffee and notes and cards. It was great.

The end of April/beginning of May always brings GEMS Sunday. We had several girls involved in the service this year, including Becca's guitar debut on "His Love Never Fails."

I asked my dad to build me some cedar planter boxes for the sides of my garage. He's the best. And I love my new planters.

Ed's Dad came for a visit over a long weekend! It wasn't the best weather, but it turned out better than expected and we were able to see and do a lot and had a great time! Hopefully he can visit again sooner rather than later.

Visiting Canada without actually visiting Canada at the Peace Arch...

And we celebrated Mother's Day!

Becca had one last meet - the FINALS! She got to run on a relay team and they did great! Love the friends she has made through trying out school sports!

This year both our choir director & orchestra director will be leaving our school (they're married) and moving to Iowa. We will miss them a lot - especially the Mrs...Bethany has had her as a teacher since first grade! It's pretty sad to lose her right before Bethany's Senior year. Her last orchestra concert was wonderful and fun...and also emotional. Goodbyes are not easy. 

Becca & her friend were the "MC's" for the concert and they were super cute!

The orchestra director always lets them do fun things like wear pirate hats when they play the theme from "Pirates of the Caribbean"...and tie balloons to their instruments when they play the theme from "Willy Wonka." She's great like that.

Orchestra means friends!

And then Sarah came home!!!!!!

And Becca and six other youth from our church made Profession of Faith. Best days of a mama's life are when their children take the step to proclaim Jesus as their Lord.

My garden finally started blooming...everything is about 3 weeks behind schedule this year due to a cold and wet spring.

Becca had a voice recital and she was amazing! Her teacher is just a fantastic voice teacher, not to mention beautiful woman of God. We are privileged to have her pouring into our lives and Becca's life.

We had to celebrate Elise's birthday a little early since my parents went to CA and soon Sarah & Bethany & I are off to Zambia!

A very special friend was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. Her aunt made her this beautiful prayer quilt and a bunch of us got together one morning to tie knots and pray together. Please join us in praying for her healing.

We finally got some warm temperatures and we even had to water the lawn!! The girls were having fun getting wet, too.