Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Got Green House?

We have a green house! Well, actually it belongs to Dusty’s dad, Tim. However, I have a feeling we will probably be “stealing” some of the space inside next spring to start plants for our garden. Therefore I am going to continue using the words “we” and “our” when referring to the green house. Regardless of ownership title I am really excited to have it around!

Monday, December 19, 2011

A blog dedicated to bragging on my wonderful Dusty!

I am so proud of how handy and industrious Dusty is with his work. What is my current example you may be wondering? Recently he took on the job of installing a new beam under my parent’s lake cabin. This may sound like an easy task but I assure you there was a great deal of skill and risk involved.

The cabin was not set on a foundation but rather it was built on top of an existing deck. The last 40 or so years have taken their toll on the three big support beams under the deck. Over the years the front two beams have been replaced but the back beam, the one getting buried by the erosion of the bank behind the cabin, has been skipped over. That is until Dusty went to work on it.

To accomplish this task Dusty dug out the beam from where the hillside had filled in around it, built supports to jack up and lift the cabin, removed the old rotten beam and replaced it with new pressure treated lumber. Amazingly, to my skeptical-worrywart nature this was all done without cracking the walls/interior structure of the cabin, dumping the cabin into the lake, or smooshing anyone underneath the beam wicked witch style. That is a pretty good report if you ask me!

While this is meant to be a show of how fantastic my husband is, it is only fair that I mention he had two great friends (Nick and Otto) accompany him in the work on this job. I think this is also a credit to how great Dusty is in picking friends too… well there I go back to boasting on him again! I suppose this is where I should stop with my big talk. Not because he doesn’t deserve more, I just don’t want to make anymore husbands feel inadequate or wives feel jealous!



Friday, December 9, 2011

Counting weeks in single digits!

Oh yes! We are on to single digits in the countdown of weeks. Of course that is supposing that this little girl takes after her dad and arrives on time or a smidge early.
Since I was given more of a due window as opposed to the singular due date, it does make calculation of her expected appearance a bit more difficult. Our original figuring of a timeline said one date; the first ultrasound said a different date and a later ultrasound went with another; all within a total span of about a week. 
In an effort to be optimistic I am counting down to the soonest date possible. That it is a little less than 9 more weeks, when it really could be closer to 10 on the long end of our due window, without even adding any days for being overdue.
Now, before all the experienced moms start explaining to me that “baby will come when she is good and ready….” and a bunch of other sage advice on the timing of labor, please just let me say I know this timeline could be far from accurate. However, I would much rather be ready (as one can be in this situation) a bit early over scrambling to gather diapers and car seats at the last minute.
Your input/opinions/guidance is, as always, still welcomed. Just don’t burst my happy little “less than 9 more weeks” bubble!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Looking Back at Halloween

In the spirit of catching up this blog with real time here are some pictures of our Halloween party this year. As always, we had a blast and we were glad those that came to join us were able to be a part of the festivities. In addition to the beef stew, copious desserts and fantastic costumes, we built a maze in the one of the barns. Between the twist and turning of hay bale stacks, a fog machine, several strobe lights and climbing up into the loft, I would say the maze was a success!


 Earlier this Fall Dusty was able to take a few days off and so we could sneak out of town for a little while. We took the opportunity to make a trip to Glacier National Park in Montana. It was a new and great experience for both of us. We love an excuse we can get to go camping in our fifth wheel! Here are some pictures from our time traveling around the park.
The first night we stayed at Apgar Campground just inside the West entrance. Our camp site was beautiful with all the trees around turning bright yellows and reds.


We drove around and explored the area near our campsite. Then before settling in for the night we went down to the see the lake. We couldn’t not have timed it any better! It was a gorgeous view of Lake McDonald. Can you believe how calm that water looks?


The next morning we explored a few more spots nearby, talked to the visitor center, found some goodies at the gift shop and then decided to move to the other side of the park. I was so happy about two adorable outfits we found for our little one to wear next summer! 
On our way to our new camping spot we found some of the park locals. This was a seriously big bear and I was very glad I noticed him from our truck, not hiking on a trail!
Here we are setting up in our new spot on the other side of the park in Many Glacier Campground. One of the perks of camping in the fall is there are no crowds like summer. It felt like we had the whole campground to ourselves.
Next we took a drive up the Going to the Sun Road. Although there wasn’t much in the way of crowds, there was still road construction. That meant we couldn’t go from one end of the road to the other like we would have liked, but we were still able to get to this visitor center at the top and look around there. It started looking like it might rain and it was already fairly late in the afternoon so we decided to come back and do our hiking in this area another time. We were able to still see some great views and take a few pictures before heading back to our site for the night. 

In the morning we took our vacation international and went to see the adjacent park in Canada. We had a lot of fun exploring north of the boarder. We enjoyed seeing more mountain views, the Prince of Wales Hotel (where it was ridiculously windy) and the shops of Waterton.


It was a perfect sunny warm fall day and we had a few places that we wanted to try to hike around while the weather was nice so began our trip back to the south to see try out the trails. First we went to a Canadian Lake. I decided this was not a place I wanted to hike. It was stunning but I had just finished reading an informational sign bragging that the meadow a little ways down the trail was regularly frequented by grizzly bears and there was hardly anyone around (there is safety in numbers) to cross paths with while walking. Dusty was supportive of my irrational fear to hike this area (aka become a juicy snack for a bear) so we drove on to our next spot. 

Maybe it was the fact we had been up to the visitor center at the top of Going to the Sun road they day before so I knew what to expect. Or it could have been there were no signs boasting of grizzlies along to wooded trail. Or… well the list could go on but whatever the case the trails leaving from the visitor center were much more appealing for hiking, despite their longer length and higher elevation. We decided to try hiking to the Hidden Lake Overlook. We took it slow and steady up what seemed like a never ending set of stairs and boardwalks. I was glad we stuck with it once we got to the top. The view was dazzling. Dusty and I concluded while hiking that this set of pictures should be called “bump hikes the continental divide!” That is a name that was definitely earned not just given away on this hike.  

We even got to see mountain goats, which were wonderfully willing to stay put and be models for pictures. On the way down the path we saw a big horn sheep which scampered off without letting us get a good shot of him. I suppose that is why we have mental pictures!
Before we made it back to our site we spotted another creature, a BIG bull moose. He was very comfortable with us watching him but was far to content with where he had bedded down for the night to stand up and let us get a full view of his size.

In the morning we looked over our maps and made sure we had visited all the places in the park on our hit list then packed up to head back home. Just to prove our amazing luck in spotting animals here is one more look at another bear we saw as we headed out. It was a bit farther away but still clearly a good sized bear.
It was a fantastic trip and I am very thankful we were able to take the time to go! But what trip would be complete without an incredible sunset? Here is the one we got as we drove back through Post Falls on our way home.