June 29, 2007

Update since Monday, June 25...

Since I haven’t written since we first arrived back in RC, I’ll be filling in some gaps from then until now. (just the highlights, or the things I’m remembering now, a week (almost two) later; there’ll be many details I’ve forgotten, I’m sure) Oh, and the last time I wrote, was June 18, the day we arrived in RC. I kinda forgot to mention in that post, but on that special day, June 18th, John and I celebrated our 13th anniversary! xxx ooo We still really like each other...

My mom needed some clothes to wear to the Kilber family reunion, so she invited me along last Tuesday night. We had a great time, she chose some really cute, flattering things and then we went for a quick dinner at Red Lobster. It was pretty cool having my mom all to myself!

Stone, Sage and I did some crawdad fishing and turtle searching down at the little pond near our house. Saylor spent the day with Robert at Janice’s house (Robert’s Gma) which he always loves to do. Janice is one of those story book Grandma’s, whipping out the homemade play dough and all! John was busy all week doing his UA test and getting his haz-mat endorsement on his CDL, but we still had lots of time together. He brought a picnic down to the pond for us and we all sat under the shade of a big tree and ate lunch together.

We got together with some friends to celebrate the Summer Solstice on Thursday. We went up into the hills to a little roadside park that has a wide, shallow stream running through it. We picnicked and (of course) got very, very wet looking for minnows, crawdads and tad-poles. Boys…they never tire of it!

We headed to Pierre on Friday for the Kilber Family Reunion which was to be held Saturday. It was nice to see and catch up with some family members, and meet plenty of new ones. Stone thought it was pretty awesome that he was related to *every single person* in the room! The boys each bid on an item at the silent auction, and were highest bidders, so went home with something special to mark the occasion.

We left Pierre Sunday, traveling to Kennebec, SD to park at a friends farm for a couple of days. John set up the big Bonzai waterslide in some shade, and the boys spent lots of time on it. Mom and Dad even went down it a time or two. The boys did a bit of wood chopping and air-soft gun shooting, too. John M. (our friend) pulled out a little BB gun pistol thing and helped the kids shoot it.

On Tuesday, John got a call from someone wanting to rent some dirt bikes, so Wednesday morning, he dropped us off in Murdo to hang out with some friends and family there for the day, while he made a quick trip back to RC to get the bikes in order. While we were in Murdo, we got to see Wyatt and Chase again! Yay! Saylor caught a little tiny ‘pocket gopher’ while we were playing at the park. We all got to investigate it from a close up point of view, it’s tiny little teeth, and little hands. He was so cute, and so freaked out, so we put him back under the merry-go-round where he came from. I drove the boys past where John and I were married, past the high-school, the grade-school, the Drive-In (ice cream joint), and swimming pool where I used to work. We were even lucky enough to catch Wyatt’s baseball game Wed. evening.

We spent Wednesday night with Judy and Roy and their boys. They hadn’t seen John in a looong time, so they all enjoyed catching up with each other Thursday morning over a delicious, home-grown, free-range, succulent steak breakfast. Judy really felt the need to fatten John up; she thinks he looks quite skinny.

We headed out of Murdo Thursday morning for Sioux Falls to spent a day with Diana and Hayden. The boys set up a lemon-ade stand yesterday, and have been having fun hanging out with each other (well, mostly having fun, anyway) I got to see a good friend from SF briefly yesterday who I hadn’t seen since we moved from here, so that was wonderful!

And that brings us to Today. We will have our cup of coffee, something for breakfast, prepare the bus for take-off, and head to Minnesota. Shirley (john’s mom) flies in to Minneapolis tomorrow morning for 8 days, and we are all so excited to see her. It’s been great making our way slowly across the state, visiting people along the way, and always going to sleep in our own bed at the end of the day. Pretty cool to have your home parked just outside at the curb!

June 18, 2007

Road-tripping is FUN!

We're in RC right now. The trip north-east went well. Only a minor mechanical problem on the bus, and John, being the super-cool-extremely-talented-can-figure-anything-out- kind of Guy, pin-pointed and solved the problem: a dirty air filter! We left Sacramento WAAAAY early Friday morning, like around 4:00 am. YIKES! It took us most of the day to get to Utah, to be with family there. It was a hot drive, and the air filter thing took a few stops and babying of the bus to get resolved. We were thankful to arrive and have the chance to hang out with George & Rita for the weekend. We went to a lake (which lake, Rita? I don't remember...she reads, I know she'll answer!) on Saturday and had lots and lots of fun there. Rita had the brilliant idea to whip up some "hobo stew". What is hobo stew, you ask? Why, it's chopped up potatoes, carrots, onions and the meat of your choice (or none at all!) all thrown into handy little tin-foil packets to be grilled when the time is right. We frolicked in the water for awhile, then dug a hole, threw in some charcoal, and had ourselves a feast on the beach. Sage was becoming quite friendly with the water, and walking out, up to his neck, and then turning around and walking back to the shore, over and over and over. You could just see him figuring out how his body moves differently in the water and how to compensate for that. I was right beside him the whole time, and he did tip a couple of times, but always came up grinning, and wiping the water off of his face, and then back to his high-stepping through the water routine.

On Sunday, we made a big breakfast of pancakes, eggs and sausage for the Dad's on their special day, then headed to a little local fishing hole. No fish were caught, but George, Saylor and Stone did a great job of building a little dam to divert the flow of water in a flowing spot. As tummies began to growl, we headed back to the house and created a whole mess of kabobs for lunch/dinner, and followed them with some delicious strawberry shortcake! (it's all about the food, with me, isn't it? :)

The boys had the best time playing with their Uncle, who is so kid-friendly! He KNOWS how to play, and our boys adore him! And, we have it doubly good, because Rita also gives the boys lots of respect and kindness. On our journey away from their home, John and I talked about how easy it was to be there. The boys were accepted and cherished for who they are, which can sometimes mean really silly little boys who have to urp all kinds of goofy body function words! Thanks, guys, for a really wonderful weekend! We'll have to do it again, soon!

I'll get some pictures up when I can...stay tuned! :)

June 14, 2007

And Back...

Well, if this just isn't the way things work in our little world, sometimes! John's company here wasn't able to give him the hours that he needed, and Wednesday morning, he was offered a job with a company in Minnesota, so... we're coming back to the mid-west. John hasn't worked at all this week, and he had to make a decision *now* about which way to go. Wait it out here, and hope like hell that he worked his butt off the rest of the summer, or go back and work in the mid-west, where he always gets in lots of hours in the busy season. So, today we're packing everything up and leaving here Friday morning. We'll stop in Ogden, UT to visit George and Rita for a day or two, and then continue on to Rapid City. He starts his new job a week from Monday. (on a brand new machine, which he is very happy about. He's sick of operating junk and spending more time working on them than *operating* them)

He'll go to Minnesota, around the twin cities area, and scope things out. He might take the bus there at some point, if he ends up doing a lot of work right there in the metro area. And if the bus is there, we can be, too. But for now, he'll be home on the weekends (we hope!) and we'll hunker down in RC for a bit until it's clear which direction to go next.

June 8, 2007

Why didn't I think of this before?

The boys and I have done our Target & Trader Joe's run, to grab a few essentials. It's a close drive to both, about 2.8 miles or so, so that's good. As we were nearing Trader Joe's, I was beginning to feel myself tense up about taking 3 healthy, active boys grocery shopping. It's just not fun for them, so they find ways to make it fun, and they usually include things that make me crazy! So, brainstorm! I asked them each to grab a basket, and go shopping! I told them to browse around at all the aisles (including the produce aisle!) and choose the things that looked good to them. So...they did! They went off together, shopping away! I don't know if this would work in a big store, but TJ's is a small, cozy little place and I felt completely ok with them being out of my sight. Interestingly enough, they stayed with *each other* the entire time, and no fighting, bickering, arguing, etc. Just lots of excitement, helping each other find things, and comparing baskets. It was SOOOO COOOOL! This, we will most certainly do again! It was a splendid shop, FUN, even! We got everything we ALL needed/wanted and walked out of there with no raised blood pressure!

Here's what they chose, collectively:
granny smith apples
a pineapple
2 bags of jerky
1 bag of organic avocados
2 6-packs of Hansen's natural soda (root beer and cherry vanilla creme)
salt & pepper potato chips
miso soup
udon soup
terriyaki noodle bowl
organic tomato bisque
bag of confetti candy
frozen potstickers
cinnammon rolls

Oh, and Sage chose a watermelon!

Good times...

The Trip

our traveling flockThe Great Salt Lake Desert

An interesting sculpture out in the middle of NO WHERE! Throughout the Salt Lake Desert, there really is nothing, so people go and put interesting things to look at, for us weary travelers, I guess! There's a christmas tree, lots of rocks that spell things, stacks of balancing rocks. It's fun to look at what people have added.
3 boys
2 birds
1 dog
1300 miles
5 states
2 days
1 hotel (and night swimming)
2 movies
2 too many fast-food stops, blech!
lots of good music

0 major meltdowns

We did well! :)

June 7, 2007

Wednesday in Sacramento

Here I sit. 10:00 pm, Wednesday night. John and Sage just hopped into bed together. (well, technically, I slid Sage out of my arms and into bed, but John kind of hopped, gently! :) Saylor and Stone are off playing flashlight tag, and walking in the shallow trench that's weaving around near our bus with their new friend, Logan. I'm enjoying a few moments of quiet solitude under our gazebo, which John had so beautifully set up, complete with hanging flower baskets and pretty lights strung in the center, that give off that just right glow. Sounds peachy, eh? Y'know, a friend a I were just talking about our blog, here. She noted that I only share the good, positive happy stuff. Yep, that's what I share! Just so you know, however, we do have our share of crap, bumps and detours, just like everybody else. I just choose to focus on the good in our lives, knowing that old Secret...what you give your Attention to increases. So, I give as much attention to all the good stuff, because how fun would it be to have the bad stuff multiply? Nah, not much fun at all!

So, yes, it is a lovely, peachy, picture perfect night here! All my boys are around me, healthy and sharing their endless gifts. How much better can it be?

Hoping your night is all you wish for, too!