Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The ever beautiful Swallow Falls State Park. I was there again on Sunday. It was miserable and cold and wet. By the time we were done with lunch, I had almost lost my inspiration to take off with my camera. I wanted a book and a blanket and fuzzy socks. But Steve said I should take my 'stuff' and go. If it was to rainy, I could stop somewhere for coffee and dessert. (since this terrible mom hardly ever makes dessert, even for Sunday lunch) So I went. When I got there and stepped out into the mist and smelled that wonderful, wet, earthy, pine-y smell- I forgot about coffee and dessert. I wanted to roll in the pine needles instead. The rain meant there was a lot less people... :) I love to go off by myself......
Can't you tell I'm in love with all the different trails? I think I walked further than I ever did before. I really didn't remember the smaller falls, anyway.

The sun peeked out a few times.
 Top of the big falls.....
This is one of the spots I don't remember- on top of one of the falls.
By the time I left, it was much later than I realized. I dashed home and made the required Sunday evening popcorn. And warm brownies...... and watched The Waltons with Steve and the kids. Great way to top off a great day!


Friday, September 25, 2009

I love playing with/editing other people's pictures. On iheartfaces.com, I can do it every week if I want! That's where this one comes from..... I love dad's hand in the shot.
 This is the original picture....

and this is with my edit....

To see what others did with the same picture, check out iheartfaces.com

Thursday, September 24, 2009

This year was the 60th Annual Harvest Sale of Swan Meadow School. It's quite a different story than it was when I first started school. We used to have it in the basement there at school. It got to crowded to do it there, so now we have it at the community center. Now it's so crowded at the center, that I know some people don't come cause it's hard to find a place to sit. Two things that we made at school, big things that we looked forward to making and then buying and eating, were patties and flavor chips. Lots of grease and sugar on the patties.... I don't know if I'd still like them now. But they were so much fun to make. To dip the patty iron into the batter and then hold in in the hot oil and watch it fry and slip off the iron in a perfect flower or butterfly. Then we had to wrap them very carefully so they wouldn't break.
And the flavor chips... does anyone remember those? I don't think they're around anymore, but I can wish can't I? Little hard pieces of.....something.... that when dropped into hot oil, they expanded and grew. There was red, green, yellow, and brown. The brown was bacon flavored and I really don't remember what the other colors flavors were. If I remember right, it was the fifth graders who did those and it was something everyone seemed to look forward to.
Mom was usually in charge of the taffy pulling. She had (and still does) a special touch with taffy and it very rarely 'flopped' for her. The eighth graders would come to our house one day that week after school and help pull and wrap and bag the taffy.
The cider....the older kids still help make that. Gallons and gallons of cider. And I had not one sip this year... Which is not nearly as tragic as almost missing out on the donuts. They make oodles of them and they sell out in no time flat. I waited in the long line for a long time and when I got about half way up, they announced that the boxed dozens were sold out. Lucky for me, later in the evening I was at the craft table with Kalei and Antoine doing sand art when one of the teachers came out with four more boxes of donuts that they found. I don't know where they were hiding, but I was thrilled!

Another tradition is that the 6-8 graders usually sing a song or two before the auction starts. This year, they asked some students from thirty years ago to sing with the kids. Thirty years ago?! There's two of my sisters in that group! I wonder how old we must seem....

Always lots of things to sell. For quite a few years, there was always a black walnut cake there. I don't remember the exact amount the year it brought the most, but I do know that it was over four hundred dollars. I can't say that I would give five dollars for that, but it became a bit of a competition I guess! Good for the fund-raiser, anyway! Or how about two moon-pies for fifty dollars? If you don't know what moon-pies are, I feel sorry for you...

Beautiful flowers, brought by my sister Clara from her garden.

The school's new cook book. The first cook book with my name in it. :) And my kid's names, too. It's their best looking cook book yet.

Several people made things from the book to display on the table with the cook books, then the food item and cook book were sold together over the auction.

Shoo-Fly pie anyone? They also sold a 400+lb pumpkin. I kid you not...but I can't prove it, cause I didn't take a picture. All in all, it was another successful Harvest Sale.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Kalei's first day of school....

That first day has come and gone. Kalei has been waiting so long to finally be able to go to school. If it were even remotely possible for me to but the brakes on life, I would. It gets harder for each one....letting them go off to school. I thought it should get easier?! I wanted shake my fist at the disappearing bus and tell it to come back.

Waiting and watching....
I think these pictures pretty much show how Cameron felt about going back to school. Or how he wanted me to think he felt. It was a change for Cameron and Victoria to this year. Different classrooms and different teachers to get used to. Cameron is in sixth grade and one of the 'big' kids now. I remember how intimidating those big kids were when I was in first and second grade. I mean, they were big, and they had been in school for years. They knew pretty much everything you need to know. Well, it looks a little different now- being the mom of one of those big kids. :)

   Grampas were gone so Gramma didn't get to watch them get on the bus. She likes to watch from the window down there. And I like it, just knowing that someone else is keeping their eye on them too.

Here she comes....
And there she goes....not feeling the tearing as her new independence starts to pull her away from me. It's like the first step to being her own person away from mom and dad. And I feel the need more than ever to get on my knees for all my children.