A Real Weekend

I've been in need of a real weekend for...ages, it seems. My hard working man has been just about killing himself to do his usual excellent work at TWO jobs...I've missed him. We've all missed him. We missed good old fashioned family time.

But this weekend was like a breath of fresh air. We each took a day to sleep in. The kids played outside for hours. We took a long hike in the the foothills (or "up a big mountain" if you ask Sammy). We visited my sister and her family - ate a yummy meal, fed the bull, got attacked by chickens, and played a little ball. We even watched a movie after the kids fell into bed with sheer exhaustion. And there was a little work - I finished a project that I've been struggling through for months (I'll share more later when I won't ruin the surprise), and Luke made another sale! Yahoo!

Who knew such ordinary life could be bliss?

I've fallen behind in blogging - there's so much I want to share! I have some recipes to get down, some Easter pictures to post, a little weight loss news, even some amazing lessons that God has been good enough to whisper in this little ear of mine. Where to start?

Instead of starting at the beginning, I'll start with pictures from yesterday's hike. I was happily sitting in my favorite chair reading and sipping coffee, when Luke whispered in my ear "Let's take a hike in the foothills today, okay?" And then the announcement to the kids: "Who wants to go on an adventure?!" Much screaming and chaos ensued :-)

I remember our last hike in the foothills with little ones. It was literally about 3 years ago - Sammy was in the backpack carrier and Thomas wasn't even around. I also remember a child of mine (who will remain nameless to avoid future embarrassment) who had to pee with no bathroom in sight. I helped said child squat in the brush, and when toilet paper was requested, I had to resort to, "sorry sweetie, you're just gonna have to...shake." I know.

(I suppose I could have tried a leaf, but I don't know leaves well enough. I'd hate for my precious babe to end up with poison ivy where no human should have poison ivy. It was safer to resort to a good "shake"...and a new pair of undies when we got home.)

So this weekend, when I heard the words "hike in the foothills", I immediately got busy packing my camera bag. I took out my favorite (heavy and expensive) camera, and packed the Pentax instead. I also packed a box of band-aids, baby wipes, a diaper...and a roll of tp.

Of course, none of this was needed (except the camera)...but you can bet it would have been if I hadn't packed it. Darn Murphy and his laws ;-)

On our way to the hills, we drove through a rather rough section of down town. It happens to be the same section of town I drive through 4 times each week to shuttle Sammy to and from her downtown preschool. And each time I sit at this corner, I think "I sure wish I had a camera!" Well, this time, I had my camera. See club "Sin"? I don't know what this establishment is these days, but in my high school days it was a dance club. I loved the place. And "Sin" would have been a great name for it even then. Finally, someone is just cutting to the chase and calling it what it is ;-)

We made our way into the foothills, and found a place to park. The fun started in the parking lot, where the kids promptly began running and squealing and poking sticks in the dirt. You'd think we never leave the house!

Thomas could hardly believe the glory of the great outdoors. I don't think he stopped sprinting for a full 2 hours.

My goofy big boy.

It does my heart good to see my strong, healthy, happy kiddos running like crazy people through the dirt trails.

I lined the kids up along the fence for one good shot of all of them together. This one cracks me up...looks like Sammy's going in for the kill!

It was a grey day, and the trees are still mostly bare, but it was still a beautiful view from the top:

Signs of spring.

Literally shooting from my hip as I helped Sammy up a steep section:

Another hip shot - love that little lip:

Over the shoulder shot (this is fun!):

The big kids were determined to slide down this very steep section. Luke took the little ones down an easier path, and I got to go back the way we came to get the car and drive it around. It was so fun to have a little time to myself.

Of course, I took plenty of pictures along the way. I'll spare you the flower and tree pictures - don't have them processed anyway. I took this picture of myself with the help of a fence post. I'm a little embarrassed to share a picture of myself with no shower, no makeup, and a ratty sweatshirt...but hey, this was me yesterday. And someday, I think it will be nice to actually have proof that I was here. And SOMEDAY, my kids will see this picture and say "oh, there's Mom...she looks so young!"


The birdsongs were amazing. These red-winged black birds chatted with me my entire trek back down the hill. One of them even sat pretty for me:

What a great weekend, eh?

Today is a low-key day. I'm going to get a little exercise, get the little ones cleaned up, and then meet Luke at a bank to sign papers. The big kids have their final AWANA ceremony tonight, and I'll figure out something for dinner. Can I just say...being out of grocery money by the 11th of the month is not a good thing. It causes stress and tears and nightmares (I'm sure thankful for the grocery fairies who visited earlier in the month...you know who you are...forgive me for calling you a fairy).

By the way - if a bank brags that they have a "simple, easy, quick, sign at home mortgage refinancing package" to offer you, don't believe a word they say. It will take months. And then, when it's time to "sign at home", they'll just mail you the pile of papers to sign....with the note that you need to have your signatures notarized.

Then, off to the bank you'll go to sign the "at home" papers in the presence of a notary. Pretty dumb.

Have a great day - I hope to be back to share some recipes soon :-)

Craig and Bethany  – (4/12/2010 01:24:00 PM)  

Oh, I'm just drinking in the refreshment. Thanks!

LOVE the sibling pics. Especially, Sammy! :) Reminds me of my number three.

Sharon  – (4/12/2010 07:01:00 PM)  

looks like a PERFECT day!

Hilty Sprouts  – (4/12/2010 10:42:00 PM)  

Now that sounds like a weekend! Glad you had a good one!

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