Friday, January 22, 2016

Marika and Corbin's Wedding

Last weekend we had the opportunity to join in the wedding festivities in Lynden.  Niece Marika married Corbin Hill.  The two have been friends for years and make a great couple.  The Narnia theme was exquisitely portrayed with a wardrobe entrance, winter setting and a snow machine.  Marti and Marika put an incredible amount of thought and planning into the special event.  Our family did a first in that we rented a house in Lynden for the weekend.  With all of the out of town company and activity at the Eide compound, it worked out best.  It was a very comfortable house near Berthusens Park.  Despite the Seahawks loss to the Panthers, it was a great weekend.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Holiday Post

This holiday season saw a lot of visitors in Southworth.  It began with an Eide Thanksgiving celebration that lasted three days.  The Cle Elem and Lynden contingents were happy to rendezvous in Southworth.  As many as sixteen people spent the night in the house.  It felt good to fill all of the rooms for once.  We cured our cabin fever one day and walked the Chambers Creek trail.  The Christmas season saw Bjorn, Jenny and the girls up for a week, and Markus and Steph on the weekends.  We went to a Seahawks game and a Nutcracker performance.  The extended Bulthuis family came for the night on the 22nd.  Christmas was spent with our immediate family in Southworth, followed by a night in Cle Elem with the Eides.  Then Ellen spent a couple of days with us before returning to Sacramento.  The last few days of break were spent recouping from all of the activity.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Anniversary Weekend

Yet another Central Washington anniversary weekend.  As usual we held off on deciding where to go, depending on the weather.  We were hoping for a Victoria trip but the Pacific low pressure system would have none of that.  So it was back to our tried and true Leavenworth, Chelan, Pateros, Wenatchee destination.  We left early Saturday morning and spent a few hours in Leavenworth before heading for Chelan to check out the fire damage.  We stumbled upon a trail that meandered through the burned riverside acreage.  We were amazed at how close the fire came to large residential areas.  We spent the night at our familiar Pateros Lakeshore Inn.  The morning sun on the lake and pouring in the room is one of our favorite parts about it.  We spent a couple of hours enjoying the warmth of the 80 degree wind, knowing we would shortly go back to the low sixties.  On our way home we stopped in Wenatchee to walk four miles on the loop trail.  We came home in time to watch most of the Seahawks/Packers game:(

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

A visit from the granddaughters

A summer is not complete without Ada and Ruby spending a few days with Papa and Farmor.  Since school starts late this year, I had a few weeks before responsibilities started.  Esther has been slaving away for most of August.  I drove down to Portland to rendezvous with Jenny Tuesday morning and brought them back on Friday morning.  Esther tried to make the most of the evenings with the girls.  Wednesday I spent most of the day in Southworth, at the beach and in the yard, enjoying one of the last beautiful days of summer.  On Thursday I took the girls to the Point Defiance Zoo.  The girls really enjoyed it and we spent the whole day there.  My favorite was the polar bear feeding inches from our heads (separated by glass of course).  Ada's favorite was the snow leopard cubs and Ruby's was the elephant.  The girls spent the nights in their 'new bedroom'.  I set up bunk beds in one of the basement rooms.  They were tickled to take ownership of the room and help do some decorating.  We enjoyed their company and were missing them as soon as they left.  Ada stated that it needs to be a summer tradition to spend time in Southworth.  I think it already is.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Let the Light Shine in

Ever since we moved to our current house we have been trying to get more natural light into our main living space.  Our view is to the north, so most windows in these spaces face that direction.  In attempt to utilize southern exposure, I have installed an additional window and two skylights.  Esther has wanted to get a glass front door for several years, but it was difficult justifying the disposal of the existing unique door.  This summer we decided to go for it.  We ordered a door June that has glass and a contemporary design.  It was delivered shortly before leaving for Japan, but we decided to wait until we got back.  Yesterday I installed it, and so far we love it.  It does compromise our privacy some, but only our entry area is exposed.  It takes a little getting used to but so far so good.

Friday, August 07, 2015


This being the last full day in Japan we were determined to get the most of it.  Hiroshima and Miyajima were on the definite bucket list for Ellen and Jenny.  Calvin and Sassa took the girls for the day because the marathon day would be too much.  The newlyweds took the girls to the Osaka aquarium.  Calvin and Sassa had not been there yet, so it was something new to them as well.  The highlight for the girls was the penguins and sea otters. Meanwhile, the five of us ventured out without our faithful tour guides.  Sassa gave us a detailed itinerary and Calvin let Bjorn borrow his Japanese iPhone-We were in business.  The hour and a half bullet train ride brought us to our southern destinations.  Miyajima is a postcard island with the iconic Torii Gate standing in the water next to a Shinto shrine stilted in the tidelands.  We took a ferry to the island and were  immediately struck by the abundance of 'foreign' tourists.  Esther was delighted with several oysters snacks, and we waded into the cool water avoiding jellyfish.  After lunch we returned to Hiroshima and Peace Memorial Park.  Ellen and Jenny said that it was well worth the effort and one of their highlights.  Being at the Memorial one day after the seventieth anniversary of the bombing made the experience seem very fresh with residual crowds and the dismantling of the ceremonial pavilion. Putting faces and names to the 140,000 victims of the bombing was very sobering. The Children's Memorial with the millions of cranes choked us all up. We worked up an appetite walking in the afternoon heat to enjoy some much anticipated Okonamiyaki at three floors of mini restaurants that all serve the famous Hiroshima dish.  Chefs grill the dish in front of customers.  We sped walked on full stomachs to the train station and caught an evening bullet train back to Kyoto.  It was a bittersweet evening spending our last night with Calvin and Sassa.

Thursday, August 06, 2015


An early rise got all of us on the train for a morning trip to Nara before Markus and Steph needed to leave for Tokyo.  Nara is the ancient capital city of Japan.  The city preserves the historic hillside and has the peculiar presence of deer in the park areas.  I mean hundreds, maybe thousands of them, roaming the streets and sidewalks.  Needless to say, Ada and Ruby were delighted by the deer. They are extremely tame and will allow people to pet them.  If you dare to feed them, they attack you.  Needless to say there is a distinct odor that permeates the upper city.  There is also a magnificent temple that boasts itself as the largest wooded building in the world.  There is a gigantic iron Buddha incased in the temple.  We quickly made our way back to Kyoto to say goodbye to Markus and Steph.  We decided that we needed to get some shopping done before it was time time to leave Japan, so we spent the rest of the evening shopping and hanging out in our rented house.