Monday, July 18, 2016

Schenks in Spokane

A couple of weeks ago the Schenks decided to bless the inland northwest with their presence and I am finally getting around to posting a few picture of all the misadventures we had with them.  It is so rare to have friends you really connect with and can start back up right where you left off.
First things first, which means getting the motorcycle out and showing off.  Yes, I realize now that I had my 3 year old out on the bike riding without a helmet and that is totally irresponsible, but man can he ride.

The weather was very mild when they were here, but we got over to Coeur d'Alene all the same and got a chance to hike Tubbs Hill.
Crazy kid picture
Normal  Kid picture
And finally, the picture you end up with when you ask a kid to take your picture.

Nothing like gathering around right before bed and listening to a old man spin a wild  yarn where all of the kids ge to add aspects to the story.  This man has a way of piling the "stories" up higher than is widely acceptable....he must be Canadian.
Thee kids were mesmerized.
Ethan and I had a chance to get dropped off at the top of a high hill and then ride all of the way down.  Nice view from the top and a pretty fast ride down.
Notice that Kevin is in proper riding attire as well.  There was only one minor fence and bike incident all weekend.
The crew exploring the Downtown of Spokane...nothing short of a fabulous visit.  We had way more fun than I can talk about here and took far too many pictures.  We are so glad they took time to visit the NW and see what our lives are like up here.
Sierra was dedicated the other week as well and here she is in her mothers baptismal outfit.  Such a cutie.
Matthew loves to type on a old computer and "do his homework".  I cant remember a time when I liked homework, but I am sure it is a phase all kids go through.  I am confident he will grow out of this love of school, but I hope not.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Snyder Cabin rental for a Birthday weekend

If a swing in a willow tree in the front yard is not the symbol of summer, I don't know what is.  We have been loving the outdoors and planted the garden and now are watching it grow.  

The boys love to hang out and see if I can push them high enough to hit the branches.
Matthew likes to ride it by himself so he can keep a good grip and not fall off.
We were on our way for a long weekend a while ago and I had the last minute thought to stop in at the Bird museum.  this is a weird out of the way museum that has alot of aviation memorabilia along with a lot of Mr. Bird inventions.  Bird invented the ventilator used in hospitals today and was also a pilot in the military.  The site is also a research portion of the property you are not allowed to visit since some of thee technology they are developing is "secret".  Kind of an interesting place and worth a visit is you are in the area.  It is free, so that is good.
The boys loved looking at the scale models of tanks, planes, and boats.

I rented the Snyder Guard station, which is a building and grounds that are on the national historic register.  It is a old forest service building and enough good things cannot be said about it or the time we had while we were there.  We were right on thee Moyie River and had the whole place to ourselves.  That means the kids could be let loose and we did not have to worry about cars running  them over while they were biking around.
The perfect white picket fence around the entire cabin.  It is a great place to visit.  Running water, electricity, and no cell service, what more could you want.
A short walk one morning brought us to this amazing waterfall.  On day 2 we went for a 6 mile hike and the boys walked the entire way. 
Sierra also had a great time.  It may not seem like she is enjoying the headlock she is in, but I assure you she is.
Jim and Jan came up with us and hung out for two nights.  I was very glad they brought ladder golf so we could have a little friendly competition.
Onsite at the cabin, there is a full time caretaker.  He was such a nice guy and cleans the place amazingly.  He also set up the fire pit so all we needed was too drop a match on it and we had a fire going.
One of the reasons we rented the cabin was because it was James birthday weekend.  We now have a five year old on our hands.  There are so many priceless moments when you kids are small.  At least a dozen times a day I hear the kids say something or have a facial expression that I try to burn into my memory and cherish it for all time.
Sierra also had a great time at the party.  She is a precious addition to any party.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

First BMX Race

We found that there is a BMX park in Coeur d'Alene where you can ride the track for free and races are held every aturday during the summer.  James was pretty brave when we found it and he even started ffrom the top with some encouragement.  The guy at the track mentioned that James should enter into the race on Saturday and that was all the encouragement that kid needed.  Every day from then on he asked when it was going to be his racce day.
He is a pretty good rider for a 4 year old.
Summertime means fun with the hose in the backyard, and this spring feels like summer so it has started early.
Two lovey ladies on mothers day.
Sierra is starting to smile and laugh alot more than she used to and it is so much fun to hold her and make her smile.
I have many many pictures of her just laughing and smiling.

I have been at work again in St, Maries and have stayed down there a couple of times this year already.  My coworker and I regularly fish after work and I caught this 27" sucker.
Not a bad way to end a day of work.

Last weekend we went to Prairie Home Companion downtown Spokane.  It was lots of fun to watch a 2 hour live radio show.

Nothing like wrestling with your brother to give you your first bloody nose.  He loved every minute of it.
I was out working the other week and dragged the kids and the wife along with me so they could ride the trail as I worked on it.
They had a ball.
Sierra also had a great time.
Nothing like a bike ride to tucker some kids out.  The silence of a car ride with kids sleeping is priceless. 

So, the weekend finally arrived where James entered into his first BMX race.  He had only rode the track about 5 times prior to the first race, but when I asked him if he was ready, I got a snarl look from him and intense eyes meaning it was go time.
Here is James doing some practice runs.
After three races James locked up second place overall.  He was quite amazing for a 4 year old.
Smiles were all around and this was one proud papa.  Good thing I had sunglasses on, so no one could see me tearing up.  It was a day for the ages.

Matthew was equally amazed at the trophy when we got home.

In all my infinite wisdom, I thought it was a great idea to go to the races that night.
As always, smiles were all around and we had a blast.
I think the boys like the headphones most of all.  They loved to see the kids division which races cars that go about 60 mph and the ages run from about 7-15 yrs old.  All in all we had a blast and we had some tired kiddos that fell asleep right away on the ride home.  That is the sign of a good fast asleep in the 

Monday, May 16, 2016

Camping in April

These kids really take up a lot off your free time.  All of this have proved to make free time and blog updates slim and lets all be real, it is always how you manage your time, and I have not been managing it very well.  I
Sierra is really starting to smile and even laugh occasionally.  She is so adorable it is hard to put into words.
It is rare when the weather is so nice in April.  With nice weather like that I thought it was time for some man time in the mountains.  Brenda was nice enough to bring the boys down to Heyburn State Park and then decided to leave the boys with me for the night.  The weather was perfect for camping and pretty good for fishing.
Matthew was amazed at the big trees around the campsite.  James was given a pocket knife a few weeks before (I dulled it up for safety reasons) and he loved to site next to the fire and whittle some sticks.  It was priceless.
The next day we went fishing with a co-worker and his kid.  The boys did great given the fact we did not catch a fish for the first 4 hours.  Matthew eventually got his first fish and was excited to catch this perch.
Back at the house and it is spring and that means we have to plant and start up the normal yard work.  Matthew and James are quite the helpers. 
These two are normal brothers.  They can be so nice to each other at times and then they can be so mean the next.  Most of the time they are pretty good though and it is priceless being around them and watching them grow up.
Nothing like another ride along helper to rototill the garden.  Both of the boys needed turns and of course had to wear their cowboy hats.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Easter 2016

The monthly going on's here seem to be about the same as last year this time.  We had about 45 people over for a Easter egg hunt on the Saturday before Easter and it ended up being cooler than we had hoped, but at least it was not raining like it was on Easter.
James and Matthew are Easter egg hunting masters.  They have been practicing on hunting for eggs for quite some time.  They generally just like to hide the empty eggs and then go find them, so the fact that these eggs had candy was a huge bonus.
Matthew and James thought that they should have their tool belts that Grandma made them for Christmas as an added Easter egg hunting tool.  James really should have used his a bit more as he was running back and forth so fast that I think he lost as many eggs out of his basket as he picked up.
Matthew was more interested in showing off his eggs than going to get more.
Brenda always tries to get the kiddos to pay attention to go through the resurrection eggs, but often the attention wavers.
Always fun running around and around.
Hey look what I have found here.  James often walked right over some eggs to get to the one he was looking at.  The hunt is just as much fun for the parents as it is for the kids.
This little girl has some of the craziest hair, so bows are a must.  She is becoming such a smiley girl.   
And, of course, she gets to wear about a 10 dresses a week and everyone of them is adorable.  Lots of bows and lots of fun.
Sunday James and I went to go scout out some good hikes for this summer with family and we went to a local area I had heard of, but never had been to.  It was a great hike and at only a mile, it is a easy family hike for all ages.
The vview from the rocks at the top is great.  You could see all the way to Steptoe Butte from up there and that is about 50 miles south of town.