Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Lochlan is Two!

Hard to believe but MicroMan is now two years old. How the hell did that happen?!? We had a super fun backyard party for the birthday boy. He requested "trains" when we asked him what he would like to have at his birthday, so Amy made a fantastic train cake, I picked up some used refrigerator and washing machine boxes from the warehouse down the street to make into a kid-sized train/fort, and Amy found a train pinata and bought engineer's caps and red bandannas for all the partygoers. Add in some amazing May weather, a ton of kids, lots of sugar, and bam--an awesome party.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Camp Orkila!

Last weekend we made the trek (car-->ferry-->bus-->foot) to Camp Orkila on Orcas Island. It was awesome! The camp was organized by KapKa, a private K-2 school with close ties to Liam's preschool. The preschool families were invited to attend as well, and about a third of us went. It was really fun--there is a bunch of stuff to do at the camp, which is apparently one of the YMCA's largest in the nation. We rowed boats to the Y's teeny private island (that Liam named Goose Island because of the nesting geese we saw there) where we explored the tide pools and found crabs, limpets, sea stars, and various other creatures. We shot arrows, roasted marshmallows, sang songs, and even had a raccoon in our cabin. The whole experience makes me want to be 10 again so I can go to camp for a whole week.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

North Cascades

We just returned from an excellent Land Trust Alliance Northwest Regional conference in Winthrop, in the Methow Valley of eastern Washington. We were very fortunate to be able to travel the North Cascades Highway, saving about two hours travel time each way. The highway crosses Washington Pass (5,477') and receives quite a lot of snow every winter, so the State DOT closes it every year. It opened on May 1, which is the day we traveled to Winthrop. We had fantastic weather, particularly on the way back to Seattle, and stopped a couple of times to take photos. We also happened upon a full-blown Civil War re-enactment (!) taking place smack in the middle of Highway 20 in Marblemount. The cannon was deafening, but the boys thought it was pretty exciting, so we ate lunch while we watched the Union and the Confederacy take pot shots at each other, ride their horses around, and in general act as if it was the 19th century again.

In any event, we are very much looking forward to more trips into the mountains over the summer months.