Tuesday, June 27

Proud and Relieved

After 13 years of talking and praying about it, three years of actually doing it, and one day of celebrating it (we will momentarily forget the years ahead of paying for it), Ed has his bachelor's degree! Several weeks ago he got his last six credits by passing a CLEP exam, and we were so relieved that we were fairly giddy for hours because it was all over and done with.

Don't you just love those people who are more important
than the rest of us, who just ignore requests to remain
seated in order that everyone can see their graduate walk?

Sunday we had the joy of watching him walk and finish this chapter of our lives. I am especially proud of him. He balanced an incredibly hectic schedule of work, school, and family with only a mere nine weeks off from school in 2 1/2 years and unbelievably still managed to graduate With Honors...all A's!

It was a rare sweltering day in Portland, over 100 degrees. But the kids were incredibly well-behaved, and we had some precious friends join us which really made it special. We stood in the heat (thankfully in the shade) for 20 minutes to get into the auditorium, then sat for an hour before the ceremony began, then the ceremony itself was two hours long. Afterwards, we went to Ed's work to give our friends a tour, only to find Ed had to resolve a crisis, of course. After another 30 minutes, we went to dinner at the Macaroni Grill. During most of this, both Abby and Ryan were on their best behavior!

Though they weren't the only ones who helped, Joel and Cathy graciously watched our children numerous times so we could have some time alone together. More than once Cathy came to our house and allowed us a late night out together, and we are so grateful for that! Not only that, but they have been models for us in their roles as spouses, parents and Christians.

Cathy, Eddie, and Joel

Congratulations, Eddie! I'm so proud of you...and I'm so relieved it's over.

Up and Running Again

I have been falling behind on the things I've wanted to post on this blog and my kids' blogs too. Last month I got a computer virus which put me out of commission for a while. Even though it was removed it seemed to bog down my already slow system, so hubby rebuilt my laptop this weekend. I am hoping to be able to post more regularly now that I have an optimized machine!

Friday, June 16

More Blooms

I just couldn't resist posting another picture of my African Violet (actually, hubby suggested it too!). It is just beautiful and blooming like crazy! I think it must be really happy in this little nook in our dining room.

Monday, June 12

June in Oregon

I just love living in Oregon. It is so green and beautiful, and now that we're living out "in the country," life is quiet and pretty slow-paced for the kids and me. I stepped outside this evening to look at our hillside, and it was shrouded in these low-lying clouds. It reminded me of the time Ed and I spent in The Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee. It was a cool 68 degrees, and the low clouds gave our little neighborhood a cozy and peaceful feeling.

Friday, June 9

Camping with a View

After an almost four-year break from camping, we decided to give it a try this year. We went when Ryan was six months old, but we haven't been brave enough to try it again until this year. It was a success in the end, though we had a few rough times, especially getting the kids to sleep. We enjoyed it enough that we're planning another trip at the end of the summer, so the good outweighed the bad.

Some of the good was seeing so much of God's incredible creation! Before we even got to the campground, we saw a couple of deer. They were just about 15 feet away! It was exciting to see them so close. Then our campground was on Timothy Lake, which is gorgeous and has breathtaking views of Mt. Hood. We hiked part way around the lake, and the view just kept getting better. I think if we go back to Lake Timothy to camp again, we'll stay at one of the other campgrounds.

We stopped hiking so we could eat lunch and let the kids play in the lake for a while. We watched large osprey fishing in the lake and Daddy found a frog for the kids to see. The osprey weren't having much luck catching fish, and that made Ed feel a little bit better since he didn't have much success fishing.

Though it's hard to see, there is a fish on the end of that line!

Back at our camp we had a visiting duck who had a perfect sense of timing, showing up at 6:30 every evening just in time for dinner. We saw dozens of adorable, though pesky, ground squirrels. They were everywhere and were so brave that I actually had trouble shooing one of them off the table. He didn't seem the least bit afraid of me!

As we were packing to leave, we were visted by a skittish Stellar Jay. He moved so quickly, I had trouble getting a picture of him that wasn't blurry. He was pretty afraid of me, but he had no fear of the ground squirrels. He chased them away more than once from the bread we had thrown on the ground. I just couldn't believe how incredibly blue he was!


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