Saturday, October 19, 2013

Our week ~ October 14

Hmmm...lots of weeks have passed since the last week we recorded...but we'll just jump right back in and overlook that.

We are trucking away at school and have completed well over 1/4 of our school year!  We are currently working on fractions and decimals, parts of speech, ancient Egyptian history, spelling words that have the Latin roots "mit" and "medi", and cell theory (our current favorite), just to name a few.  This week in school, Felix learned how to tell time...or at least, he discovered that the noisy clock has a little black thing that moves every second and is great entertainment for a prowling kitten.
Both of the kittens are getting so big!  They enjoy sitting in their window seat next to the school table, where they nap, take baths, and watch birds and falling leaves.
The kids played soccer in the rain this week...but I forgot to take my camera. :(  They were soaked by the end and happy to get into dry, warm clothes, although they had lots of fun trying slip-and-slide soccer!  This orb spider's web was stunning on that rainy day; with all of the tiny raindrops clinging to it, it looked like something from a fairy-world.  This picture doesn't do it justice, but if you zoom in, it gives a little glimpse, anyway.
David has been busy creating a fleet of vehicles with his Legos.  Here is one of his (many, many) vehicles.
Last night we took our annual trip to Burt's Farm.  The weather was just right for an autumn outing; we enjoyed our hayride, seeing all of the pretty pumpkins, and a cup of fresh apple cider.  Best of all was just being together!
And just for the record, when the kids were toddler/preschool age, I used to imagine how easy it would be to get their pictures when they were older.  Wrong!  It was much easier when they were little enough that a silly face from their dad produced giant smiles every time!  Here are our outtakes...which, in truth, might be a better representation of the real 'us' anyway! :)

Our weeks ~ September 23 & 30 and October 7

During these weeks, we made a trip north to visit family and attend a family wedding.  My picture-taking wasn't so great, but the trip itself was wonderful!  We shared lots of laughs and adventures and have lots of happy memories of our time together.

On our way to NY, we stopped in NC to visit Bruce's parents and his aunt, who was visiting (and I forgot to take a picture), then we stopped in Maryland to visit Bruce's sister and her family.  The cousins love each other to pieces and they did a great job squeezing as much togetherness into our day as they could!
On our way from MD to NY, we did a quick stop in Gettysburg to introduce the kids to that history-rich area.  We did a speed-tour of some of the battlefields and stopped for a quick look in the cemetery to see where President Lincoln gave his Gettysburg Address.  We plan to visit again for a longer tour.
Next stop, NY!  In between playing games with my grandma :), we went on some adventures.  Here are some highlights of our trip...
Salmon River Fish Hatchery
The salmon are running in NY at this time of the year, so we got to watch them fighting their way up the stream and then making their way up the fish ladder to the holding tanks.
This picture doesn't do justice to the size of the fish...most of them were around three feet long.

After a picnic lunch, we headed to Salmon River Falls.  It was gorgeous!
(This is the only picture from the whole trip with us and my grandparents smiling for the camera. Grrr!)
Next we headed to Pulaski, NY to watch the fishermen hauling in salmon from the Salmon River.
Last stop of the day was Oswego, NY, where we ate incredible, every-bit-as-good-as-I-remembered haddock sandwiches for dinner at Rudy's, on Lake Ontario.  The kids (and Bruce!) enjoyed skipping rocks on the lake.
Later in the week, we went to Abbott's Farm, where we watched cider being made, fed animals, and played in the corn maze.
We enjoyed time with extended family...
...ate local favorites...
...and watched out the window until we saw a big barge headed up the Oswego River, then raced into Phoenix to watch the drawbridge go up and the barge go through the locks (with only about six inches of clearance on each side -- very impressive!).
We ended the week with a Minota family wedding...
...and then headed home, through the beautiful fall colors of southern New York.  It was a wonderful week; it was even worth the painful goodbyes!
It helped a little that we came home to our cats (who were VERY happy to see us after two weeks...this is the kittens watching the kids, who were playing outside)...
...our church family (this was set up for a ladies' fellowship lunch)...
...and our friends (Karen and I did our annual applesaucing and ended up with enough sauce to keep us going for a long time!  I got to use NY apples this year, from my grandparents' tree. :)  Adel took her first whole apple very seriously and impressed us all!).
It was a wonderful trip, and it was terribly hard to leave our northern family,
but there's no place like home...
and that is the dichotomy of having loved ones far away!