Tuesday, June 30, 2009

More Photos

I know, I know... I've posted a lot of photos lately. I just can't help myself. I really have been doing a few other things around here. We took the boys to see Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian. We visited my favorite spot again. We've been reading. We've been playing in the sprinkler. We've been spending time with my grandparents, visiting from California. I went to book club. Leif had the stomach flu. I got my hair cut. Levi has gone to piano lessons. We're getting ready to go on vacation. We rode on the beautiful carousel in Salem and visited the State Capital. You know, LIFE.

Today, we had a wonderful visit with friends. Lori is up from California with her little guy. I photographed him back in December. Boy howdy, has he grown! And, oh my, is he a doll. I took one look at him when they arrived and told Lori, 'You are going to let me take pictures of him today, right? Right?!' What do you think?

Jameson Collage (3)

Jameson Collage (2)

Jameson Collage

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Rouse Family

R Family (15)

Golly, my camera has been getting a workout lately! And I've been in girl heaven. Grin. This time around, I had the pleasure of meeting Jen and Eric and their three little girls. I've often read Jen's blog, The Short Years, so it was fun to spend some time with her in person! Her girls are gorgeous, but you can see for yourself...

These are three little girls you wouldn't mind meeting in an dark alley (wait, I did meet them in an alley!):

R Family (4)


R Family (2)

R Family (14)

R Family (3)


R Family (10)

R Family (11)

R Family (5)


R Family (12)

R Family (13)

R Family (9)

And don't forget Mom and Dad!

R Family (8)

I'll have a few more photos to show you tomorrow, and then we'll get back to our regularly scheduled programming. (Do I have regularly scheduled programming?)

Friday, June 26, 2009

The Berry Family

B Family

Photographing the Berry family was a wonderful pleasure.
The girls are positively angels, and they braved the cold breeze with cheerful smiles.
I've only just begun to edit all the lovely images we managed to capture.
It will be impossible not to share more with you in a couple days.



The Girls (3)

B Family (2)

The Girls

The Girls (2)

Annie and Molly

Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Tour Continues...

Indian Caves

The Mining/Frontier Town is quite nice. Unfortunately, I spent my time looking for Luke rather than posing with Abraham Lincoln (a living, breathing 'Abe', no less), sliding down the fort slide, and checking out the other entertainment. We did manage to spend a bit of time in the Indian caves. I don't know how I missed getting a photo of the large teepee, but the center photo above shows the tunnel entrance inside the teepee. It heads underground and meets up with the Indian caves. I remember spending an afternoon running through the cave maze when I was in grade school!

The Haunted House is a scary one. Beware!!

Haunted House

A frontier town isn't complete without a log ride through the mill.

Log Ride

If you are a ride kind-of-person (like Luke and myself), don't miss the bobsled ride. I particularly love the true forest atmosphere...

Bobsled Ride

(We didn't see the play in the amphitheater this time around, and I'll post photos of the little kid rides later...)

The Old World Village is quite picturesque. Lots of little things of interest. This was my first time on the new ride, Challenge of Mondor. (Similar to the Buzz Lightyear ride at Disney).

Medieval Town

We never miss the water and light show in the old tavern. I loved it as a kid, and my boys were mesmerized. Leif watched it four times with Daddy...

Water Fountain Show

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

In an Enchanted Forest...

...Not So Far Away.

Welcome to Enchanted Forest

Welcome to the Enchanted Forest, where fairy tales come to life!

The 3 Bears

Visit the cabin of the three bears (you might find Goldilocks in bed!) and Sleeping Beauty's castle.

Meet Mary, Jack & Jill, Little Miss Muffet, Peter Peter Pumpkin Eater, and many more friends.

Jack, Jill, & Mary

Find Hansel and Gretel in a cottage made out of sweets, and try not to fall walking in the Crooked Old Man's crooked house!

Hansel & Gretel, Crooked House

Don't get stuck following Alice into the rabbit hole!

Alice in Wonderland

Where else can you climb into the Wicked Witch's mouth and slide out again?

The Wicked Witch

Or, my personal favorite, wander through the Seven Dwarfs' Mine. It is dark in there, but you can hear them singing and see the sparkling gems.

The Seven Dwarfs

This lovely enchanted place is found on a heavily wooded hill. The trees are real. The moss is real. The birds are real. The inclined paths, are, well, at an incline.

The tour will continue tomorrow....

At the End of the Road

The Strawberry Stand

Every June of my childhood (well, every year I can remember), my sisters and I walked (or rode bikes) to the end of our country road to visit the strawberry stand. We would taste-test, help with customers, and occasionally buy strawberries. Later on, we worked in the strawberry fields, sometimes bumming a ride on the truck loaded with flats of berries, at the end of a hot day....back to the end of our road.

I remember the ancient salt-of-the-earth guy who manned the stand. He rolled his own cigarettes. It was fascinating to watch. I remember walking the road in bare feet, popping the hot tar bubbles with our toes.

Luke took the walk with Bambi a couple days ago, to buy two little boxes of strawberries. They feasted on the way home, popping tar bubbles (well, at least Luke did). We have dropped by the stand several times this season, purchasing each time a flat of strawberries to freeze for smoothies all winter long. I hope my boys will treasure the memories of innocent childhood pleasures.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Fairy Princess

Fairy Princess Birthday Girl

What better reason to visit an Enchanted Forest, than to celebrate the birthday of a fairy princess?

Enchanted Forest

Why do I love Enchanted Forest?
Well, it is like being at two of my favorite places at the same time: Disneyland and camping in the mountains. With a little Renaissance Faire and Storybook Land thrown in.
Lots of photos coming up....

Enchanted Forest

Monday, June 22, 2009

Validating My Book Addiction

Alternate Titles:

Why I Love Book Lists
How I Keep Levi Out of Trouble (or His Mouth Quiet and His Body Still)
Pre-reading Books: It's an Impossibility
I Need Twenty More Book Shelves

The truth is, if I get an hour or two on my own (which hubby kindly grants me when he is able), my favorite places to head are the bookshelves at Goodwill (where youth fiction paperbacks are generally $.99 each) and then to the library. This is my book stack from this week's trip to Goodwill:

Book Stack

Why so many books, you might ask. (Well, many of you don't need to ask, as you have the same, ahem, issue.) I'll tell you whether you wanted to know, or not.

Levi read many books last year, but he often had 20 going at the same time, and I was never sure what he read or finished. He isn't much of a list guy (like Luke), so writing down the books he completed wasn't much of an incentive in his world. This year (technically, the day after Christmas last year), I made up my mind to keep his free-reading list for him. (Most of the books he reads for history, literature, and science are on a separate list.)

I'm sure I've missed a book here or there, but who's counting? Grin.

One thing this list has done for me is that I've stopped worrying that Levi might not get around to all the excellent books I desire for him to read.....

Levi's Free-Reading Book List: January - June, 2009

*Atwater, Richard and Florence. Mr. Popper’s Penguins

*Avi. The Barn

*Babbitt, Natalie. Kneeknock Rise

*Barrie, J. M. Peter Pan

*Barry, Dave & Pearson, Ridley. Peter and the Starcatchers
Peter and the Shadow Thieves
Peter and the Secret of Rundoon
Escape from the Carnivale
Cave of the Dark Wind

*Birdsall, Jeanne. The Penderwicks

*Bishop, Claire Huchet and Pene du Bois, William. Twenty and Ten

*Blyton, Enid. The Famous Five On a Treasure Island
Five on Kirrin Island Again
Five Are Together Again
Five Go to Demon’s Rocks

Five Get Into a Fix
Five Have a Wonderful Time
Five Go to Billycock Hill
Five Go to Smuggler’s Top

*Bond, Michael. A Bear Called Paddington
Paddington Helps Out

*Bruchac. The Girl Who Helped Thunder & Other Native American Folktales

*Bulla, Robert Clyde. Squanto Friend of the Pilgrims

*Carlson, Natalie Savage. The Family Under the Bridge

*Carroll, Lewis. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
Through the Looking-Glass

*Cleary, Beverly. Mitch and Amy
The Mouse & the Motorcycle
Ralph S. Mouse
Runaway Ralph

*Clements, Andrew. Frindle

*Cole, Joanna. The Magic School Bus Chapter Book: Electric Storm
Amazing Magnetism
The Wild Whale Watch
The Giant Germ

*Cowles, Julia Darrow. The Robinson Crusoe Reader

*Dahl, Roald. George’s Marvelous Medicine
The Witches

*Davies, Jaqueline. The Lemonade War

*Dillon, Eilis. The Island of Horses

*Eager, Edward. Half Magic
The Time Garden
Seven-Day Magic
Magic by the Lake
Knight’s Castle
Magic or Not?

*Enright, Elizabeth. The Four-Story Mistake
Then There Were Five
Spiderweb for Two
Thimble Summer
Gone-Away Lake

*Erickson, John R. The Further Adventures of Hank the Cowdog

*Estes, Eleanor. Ginger Pye
The Moffat Museum
Rufus M.

*Funke, Cornelia. The Thief Lord (has read twice)

*Gannett, Ruth Stiles. Elmer and the Dragon
The Dragons of Blueland

*Harris, Joel Chandler. The Adventures of Brer Rabbit

*Haywood, Carolyn. Betsy and the Boys
Betsy and the Circus

*Hope, Laura Lee. The Bobbsey Twins
The Bobbsey Twins Adventure in the Country

*Lawrence, Caroline. The Pirates of Pompeii

*Morris, Gerald. Sir Givret the Short

*King-Smith, Dick. The School Mouse

*Kipling, Rudyard. Just So Stories

*Konigsburg, E. L. From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler

*Lawson, Robert. Ben and Me

*Lewis, C. S. The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

*Lindgren, Astrid. Pippi Longstocking
Pippi Goes on Board
Pippi on the Run

*MacDonald, Betty. The Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle Treasury

*McAllister, Angela. Digory the Dragon Slayer
Digory and the Lost King

*McCaughrean, Geraldine. One Thousand and One Arabian Nights

*McMullan, Kate. Dragon Slayers’ Academy: 97 Ways to Train a Dragon
Knight for a Day

*Morey, Walt. Runaway Stallion

*Mowat, Farley. Owls in the Family

*Nesbit, Edith. The Book of Dragons
Five Children and It
The Magic City

*Osborne, Mary Pope. Magic Tree House (countless)

*Paterson, Katherine. Bridge to Terabithia

*Pene du Bois, William. The Twenty-One Balloons

*Ransome, Arthur. Swallowdale

*Robinson, Barbara. The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

*Rupp, Rebecca. The Dragon of Lonely Island
The Return of the Dragon
The Waterstone

*Scieszka, Jon. The Time-Warp Trio: Gladiator
Tut Tut
Knights of the Kitchen Table

*Sobol, Donald. Secret Agents Four
Encyclopedia Brown
Encyclopedia Brown Finds the Clues

*Sorensen, Virginia. Miracles on Maple Hill

*Smith, Alexander McCall. Akimbo and the Crocodile Man
Akimbo and the Lions
Akimbo and the Elephants

*Warner, Gertrude Chandler. The Boxcar Children
(#1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 15, 18, & Winter Special #1)

*Watson, Jean. The Family Pilgrim’s Progress

I've added an 'On Levi's Book Shelf' list over on my side bar, so that I can start listing books he is reading. Hopefully I'll be able to keep up with it....

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Let's Hear it for the Boys!

My Guys

Well, I knew I'd better be able to come up with something for the i heart faces' theme this week. It is boys and only boys. And I happen to know a thing or two about boys. I couldn't leave any of them out, so I picked my favorite photo of all three of my little guys for the child category and one of my hubby for the adult category. I think that about covers it. Grin. (But what on earth I am going to do when they decide to have a girls-only theme?!)