Sunday, June 30, 2013


This past winter Benjamin's grandmother felt it was time to have another family reunion. After all the last one was just a mere over 34 years ago. Before Ben was even born. So we loaded up the family van and headed off to the mid-west. A land the kiddos or myself have ever experienced. It was a quick little 28 hour hop away.

This is the kiddos with two of Ben's second cousins playing with bubbles in the church parking lot.

Jakey spent about thirty minutes or so trying to get up in the tree in Grandma Guhl's front yard.

 Down the street from the church where the family reunion was being held was a huge playground. The kiddos all went over for an awesome game of hide and seek.

 The girlies all found a swing under one of the structures.
 Here was all are with the matriarch of the Guhl family. She is the mother of seven, five surviving. I loved listening to her stories and getting to know all of the kids. They love and respect their mother. That speaks volumes for the type of woman she is.
 This was the last picture we took just as we were getting ready to load up and head out of town. Next to Ben are his grandmother and Uncle Ralph.

This is the amazing play set the kids played on. Ben's Uncle Jeff helped build it. Can you imagine getting to go outside of recess and playing on this? Jakey swore he would never go back in when the bell rang.

We all had a lot of fun and it was really great getting to know Ben's side of the family as well as experiencing another part of our country. My kids behaved themselves.....somewhat. Nothing was blown up and no bones were broken. I consider this trip a huge success!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

observations of a mildly carsick traveler

We recently went on a very long road trip to Iowa. I will defiantly post more about the Guhl family reunion. Here are just a few observations I made about the states we drove through.

Idaho-been there seen that.
Montana- yep, big sky...yadda,yadda,yadda...
Wyoming-A new state for us. They name their creeks really weird names and post them on the side of the freeway. For example I saw these three names about 2 miles apart.

Crazy Horse Creek
Wild Horse Creek
Can lead a horse to water but can't make it drink Creek
Dead Horse Creek

about ten miles later....

Crazy Woman Creek....

I knew where this was going and could not bear to read the following creek names. Instead I started guzzling water.

South Dakota-flat and we are introduced to this weather phenomenon called "humidity" This is where you get out of the car, wring out your skin, and wonder to the nearest air conditioned facility. For us that was usually the restroom in the gas station.

Iowa made South Dakota look mountainous. Every few miles your sense of smell would be assaulted by pig excrement that has been stewing in the humidity for the past 4 weeks.

Well I am off to unpack the van. Possibly find that other child that we have be missing since our stop in Chamberlain.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Last Bit of Eagle business

So we had one last thing to do for Daniel's Eagle Scout Ceremony. That would be the awarding the father with the Eagle Scout Dad pin.

We clipped off the stem and grinded down the back smooth, took some JB weld (hope it holds up, that is what I could find on hand) an placed it on the granite portion of the headstone.

Here is the close up, it is a small token but I hope and pray that over the years we will be able to add two more as well as anything else the girls would like to add. 

I know it is a bit unconventional to glue stuff onto a headstone, but I am sorta an unconventional person.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Cultural Enrichment... Union style

And now for something completely different......

Two weeks ago we went to a Civil War re-enactment called, The Battle of Deep Creek.
Okay history buffs, your right there were no Civil War battles fought in Washington, but that does not mean you cannot make one up!
We found out about this re-enactment on line. We went slightly apprehensive after the Highland Games disappointment two years ago. But these guys have their act together and put on a dang good show. It lasts three days and takes place in a huge field on a ranch just outside of Airway Heights. The name of the ranch is ironically called Deep Creek. Weird coincidence.

They have two encampments. One for the Union troops and with in that are the different battalions. Then one for the Confederate troops with their different battalions. They even kept the encampments typical to north and south. The south was set up as a family encampment because of the many displaced families during the war went to the battle field to join their husbands/ fathers. The Union side was more orderly and military in fashion where the Confederate side had a more of a patched together farmer militia feel. The people there loved to talk about the history of their battalions as well as the history of their respective sides and their reasons for going to war. It was educational and fun! 

The kids each got to hold a 12 lb cannon ball that was actually shot from a cannon from cannon during the Civil War. 

While we were there a trader and spy for the Confederate army got put in the stocks.

 Each tent was actually lived in by the people there for the three days of the re-enactment. It was all so authentic looking and I loved seeing the women and girls dresses. Yes, there were children in period clothing running around everywhere and even playing in the creek.

 This is an actual period piece. The great-great-great grandmother to our Viewfinders. 

 And what is the point of going to a re-enactment if there are no guns there? NONE! This is a genuine Gatling gun from Civil War. This is the predecessor to our modern day machine guns.

 Yes, the Civil War did have a Navy. This gentleman ran the armory and had a very impressive collection of period sabers, pistols, swords, and rifles.

 Of of the guys was kind enough to let Jakey hold his rifle and wear his Union hat. In fact several of the people there encourage a hands on experience for the kids. It was look and TOUCH! How cool is that?

 This was Daniel's favorite tent. The field surgeon's tent. It was gruesome. Once again though, all the tools were hands on and the stories were gory and great.

 There was a "kids corner" where the kids could play games like nine pin, checkers, and roll a hoop through the grass with a stick. Jake was pretty good at this. Also as everyone was waiting for the battle to start some of the soldiers started up a game of stick ball on the battle field. The kids had a blast.

 This in just one of the five cannons they had going off during the battle. They were so loud and the ground shook. You could also hear all the car alarms going off in the parking lot in between volleys. Just like the real Civil War.

 There is a shot of one of the cannons going off during the heat of battle. When all five were going it was awesome.

 The South will rise again!

When all was said and done we headed back to the parking lot to find our car. No, this is not it. But it is a awesome one! Dan would have swooned, Ghost-busters is one of his all time favorite movies. It even had the proton packs in the back. 

All in all, Ben and I considered it a very successful outing.