Saturday, April 7, 2018

Spring Break -- Packing it all in!

Spring Break was LONG awaited with all the kids!!  Everyone was ready to sleep in, stay up late, read, watch movies, and hang out with friends.  We pretty much did all the stuff PLUS threw in a few other things!

Nate did Track Camp!!!
Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday mornings Nathan participated in the high school run Track Camp.  He enjoyed it for the most part.  They ran tons of hills!  The camp finished off with a mini-track meet.  This is Nate competing in the 1000 m.

Nate also did the javelin. 

And the 800 m.
Meanwhile....Cooper was supposed to do Track Camp too but ended up with a respiratory infection and did a lot of this instead.
Cooper was sad to miss out on Track Camp but there was no way he had the energy or oxygen to run.  

He did enjoy a lot of time reading!
Kid's Camp!!

Alysee ran two sessions of Kid's Camp.  We've never done two in one day.  It was a super long day for Alysee but nice to have all the mess consolidated into one day.  Alysee has learned that she enjoys having smaller groups.  Her favorite activity with the kids for this session was an outdoor obstacle course.
Part II of Spring Break...Gardiner, WA
After Grandma Howe's passing away recently there has needed to be a lot of work done up at her home and property.  My parents have been AMAZING in working so hard to clean out, organize, haul off, donate, etc...  I offered to come up with the kids to help at the house for a few days over Spring Break.  This was my first time EVER driving to Grandma's house.  Let me tell was scary!!  Snoqualmie Pass was ultra rainy and even a bit of snow.  The spray from the huge semi's is what I hate most.  But with my five cheerleaders in the back (and Tyler by my side) we did it!!  Birch had to stay and work but the kids really were great in the car.
I never actually walked down to the beach as it was so cold and rainy most of the time or we were too busy working.  The kids enjoyed a bit of beach time each day with Poppi!

One of my favorite jobs was helping to sort pictures.  I am putting together a slide show for Grandma's memorial and so I was taking a lot of pictures of pictures.  I learned so much about Grandma and Grandpa while sorting -- I sure wish I had taken the time to ask more questions and learn more about their life when I could have.  This was my favorite picture I found of Grandma.  I think she looks beautiful!!!  I think this was taken while they lived in Venezuela.

The girls spent lots of time catching salamanders and frogs.

Dan, Kate, cousin Peter (who I haven't seen in YEARS and currently lives in Berlin, Germany), Uncle Pat, Uncle Steve and Aunt Jackie were all at the home as well.  Outside of Steve and Jackie we haven't seen the others for ages.  It was fun to reminisce together. Not knowing what could be done to help some of the time I found it easy to be in charge of a few of the meals.  I was glad that I had cleaned the freezer out with some pre-made meals.  This made it easy to come up with ideas in a kitchen that was pretty barren.
Packing up Grandma's dishes that we always ate on - cousin Eleanor and Laura are splitting this set.

One of Tyler and Alysee's jobs was to photograph everything in the house and then put each item online for family members to look through.  Tyler and Alysee did an awesome job with this assignment -- it was so nostalgic to look through. 

The kids spent hours playing with the marble tree (and begging to bring it home).  It's just one of those things that totally says "Grandma Howe!"  I love that my kids share some of my memories!
 Tyler was awesome to take his camera with him to the beach and capture some cold but fun times.

Another job the kids had was to make and be in charge of a huge burn pile.  They were shocked that they could do it all without an adult watching over them.  I think their favorite part was riding the gator up and down the driveway to get and unload stuff to burn.
And of course, just as we are leaving the sun came up bright and beautiful!!    I'm really thankful we had this time to support my mom and to be of a little help.  
The drive home had it's stressful moments but overall it wasn't too bad.  We took the ferry into Edmonds on the way home.  It was blustery and cold outside.

Wish we could have felt like we were a little more helpful but so thankful we had the chance to work alongside my parents.  I'm looking forward to Grandma's memorial service over Memorial Weekend when all the family will be together to celebrate this wonderful woman!!

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