Monday, July 31, 2017

Summer Happenings

Hello!  Long time, no see.

I think my lack of posting attests to how busy I have been.

Here are some things we are up to:

We're into summer break, but that means I'm planning out next year. I'm actually behind and starting to fret about it. My kids will be in 7th and 5th grade this next school year. We're planning on using some of the same curriculum as last year and changing a few things up. We're going to be trying NOEO Science this year. We'll be doing Chemistry.

Summer Vacation
The kids and I took one trip to visit the newest cousin. That was fantastic!  And I got to take photographs of the baby! We also just got back from our biggest family vacation ever. The kids are at a great age to take a long road trip and Biker Boy had some vacation to use. We took a 17 day road trip to Oregon and camped in our Aliner! It's amazing how short 2 weeks can be when you want to cram a bunch of things in. We rode an old train in Chama, went to Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, and stopped near Park City, UT to bike. We stayed near Hood River, OR and went rafting on the White Salmon River with River Drifters, visited Lost Lake, and did lots of hiking. We went to Silver Falls State Park and hiked the Trail of Ten Falls. We spent a day at the coast and went to the Oregon Coast Aquarium. We went to Crater Lake National Park and made a stop at the Redwoods before driving through the California desert to get home. Oh, another bonus was that we can still use the free pass for fourth graders to get into National Parks and Federal land! Even after 2 weeks in our smaller camper together, we could have kept going. We had a great time together and didn't annoy each other too bad. I think we could be professional vacationers.  The trip was full of epic memories that the kids will hopefully remember always. Oh, we bought an inflatable kayak that we brought with us. It was cheaper than renting one for a day! And we can take us with it to other places.

Summer Project 1
I wanted the kids to have a project to keep them busy this summer. I'm starting to think we may have bit off more than we can chew. We're tearing down our nearly decade old swing-set and we are designing and building a new fort/swing-set. The kids have been dismantling the old one. Now they are trying to learn Sketchup to design a new one. And the fact that it's hot out, means we can only work in the morning and evenings. Maybe if we get it done I'll post the plans. We actually started building the skeleton of it yesterday. The nearby Grandpa was kind enough to donate used lumber from his old deck and windows from when his house was remodeled, so we're utilizing those. We're also reusing some hardware and swingset parts from the old set. It's going to be a 6x8 fort and the ceiling will be 8 foot tall at the high end and 7 foot at the short, so the kids should be able to use it for awhile. The last playset lasted a decade, so hopefully the new one will too. If the kids don't use it, I'll make it my she shed!

Summer Project 2
I bought a Blue Snowball for a good deal and the kids have been having fun playing with the microphone and the free software Audacity. They especially love to put effects on their voices. The boy plays the guitar, so he wants to record some of his own original music.  We may even try to make a music video. I think I may be a wee bit over ambitious.

Summer Project 3
The kids have soccer camp this week. I had lofty goals to repaint the bathroom and laundry room and do a little landscaping. Scratch all that. I'll be lucky if I finish planning the school year.

Car Problems
It seems like they always come at once. We have a 2011 Mazda CX9. It was great up until 100,000 miles. Then it fell apart. It seems all the warranties that were extended to 90,000 miles for safety issues, hit us after the car got to 100,000. We had the transfer case replaced (it had to go in twice for that!) and my husband has replaced the rear wheel bearings. All that was done before our road trip. Biker Boy and Scooter replaced the transfer case fluid and oil when we got back from our trip. On our road trip the brake booster went out, so my car is in the shop for that right now. Luckily, I had read the safety bulletin online before we left, so it wasn't too surprising when the brakes didn't work correctly. Luckily my husband was driving and was strong enough to manually push the brakes. We feel blessed that we were able to get home safely. Now we have to replace the front struts, replace the transmission fluid, and get new tires. Looks like we'll be having some car repair classes for the kids in addition to structural engineering (building a play fort).

Now I should go plan some school for next year! Happy week everyone!

1 comment:

Thank you for taking the time to comment, I appreciate it. Comments will be moderated eventually. Computer use only occurs when kiddos are asleep or otherwise occupied. Thanks for your patience.


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