Tuesday, August 30, 2011

summer work projects

Every summer I like to include one blog post that chronicles my summer work activities. It was great to have Calvin's help this summer as we painted the exterior of the rental including the deck railings. It needed it very badly. We pressure washed, scraped, primed and hand painted the entire exterior. I even hit some spots that were never covered when it was built. In addition, I tore out aluminum windows and installed vinyl windows in a neighbor's house. I did a small deck repair for another neighbor. One of my final projects was one of our own bedroom windows right above our bed. Ever since our first night in the house with a howling November north wind, I have wanted to replace that sliding window. I finally did it and am ready for this winter's storms. Now that school is starting, I get to hang up my tool belt for another year.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Saying good bye again

This morning we said good bye to Calvin again. He is off to Japan for another year of study at International Christian University. It was great having him home for July and August. He was a great help in getting the rental house painted and we were able to share lots of family time. Calvin will quickly adjust to life back in Japan. This year he will be starting with a working knowledge of the language. It is a little easier saying good bye this year, though not a lot. Markus eased our emotions by spending the day with us. He joined us on a 30 mile bike ride on the Foothills Trail near Orting. What great weather for a bike ride! The trail has so much variety: farmland, suburbia, small town, glacial river, and mountain prairie. The enjoyment of the time with Markus helped the loneliness of missing Calvin.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Seabrook family vacation No. 2

This year's summer family vacation saw us back at Seabrook resort on the Washington coast. We added a new Bulthuis to the ranks with Ruby , and Markus' girlfriend Stephanie Rubesh joined us for the four day adventure. Unfortunately, a nasty bug was passed around as one after the other fell victim to its debilitating effects. Only Markus, Stephanie and I were spared. (so far :) We stayed at a nice rental house with a strong beach feel. The weather was better than forecasted and we had no rain or fog and a fair amount of sun. There was lots of reading, biking, beaching, gaming and eating (for those not sick) We do treasure the time together that we can share as a family.

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Bria's Fremont Birthday Party

My niece Bria wanted to have a birthday party in Fremont with the family before going off to Hawaii again. So the gang converged from around the Sound to the streets of Fremont. The first venue was the Fremont Coffee Company after realizing ETG was may too small to accommodate the gang. Then a scavenger hunt took us up to the troll and down along the ship canal. Next, we loaded up and went to Gasworks Park for a picnic on the steps overlooking Lake Union and the Seattle skyline. The overcast sky came in handy for the night as it trapped the heat and gave us mild temperatures to enjoy the surroundings until late in the evening.

Thursday, August 04, 2011

sailing overnighter

overnight mooring by Southworth Sailor
overnight mooring, a photo by Southworth Sailor on Flickr.

Esther and I spent our first night in the Montgomery 17. The weather this week was too inviting to pass up a short sailing cruise. The overnight mooring selection was pretty close to home. For twenty-five years we have watched boaters flock to the westside buoys on Blake Island. They are filled every weekend of the summer and many weekdays as well. We decided that we needed to experience the excitement ourselves. It was a little odd seeing our house from our mooring, but it felt like a whole different world. We headed over at noon on Wednesday, and even at that got the last buoy for the evening. After a hike around the island, we settled in for a relaxing evening of reading and soaking in the sunset and stars. The night went great and we got lots of sleep. On Thursday morning we set sail across the sound on a light breeze. After entering Elliot Bay we decided to go across the sound again and find something to eat in Winslow. I had never sailed into Eagle Harbor but watched the ferry wind its way through the channel. With no charts with me, I figured that I would just stay well out of the ferry's track. Bad idea! We were feeling pretty smug, sailing into the harbor when we suddenly ran aground. I quickly doused the sails, started the motor, pulled up the rudder and center board, and motored out of a potentially embarrassing situation. We found a mexican restaurant in Winslow and bought some much needed sunscreen. Then it was back to the boat for a leisurely downwind evening sail to Southworth. Needless to say, I motored through the entrance to Eagle Harbor. The trip was a great success, and I am pleased with how both the sailboat and dinghy handled, not to mention the crew.

Monday, August 01, 2011

Birthdays and Babysitting

The end of July is birthday time for Calvin and Esther. It was also our chance to play grandparents for three days while Bjorn and Jenny took an anniversary getaway to Victoria. I was worried that we might have a statistical oddity with bad weather on Esther and Calvin's birthday, but at the last hour the warm weather came through. Esther and I had a great time with Ada and Ruby, exploring the Southworth neighborhood with the beach and 'candy store', swimming in the front yard pool and visiting SK park. Calvin was working at Miracle Ranch until the afternoon of his birthday, so Alicia, Megan and Tyler spent the previous night putting post it notes over every inch of Calvin's room (except the floor and ceiling) They finally finished the 6000 post its as dawn broke the next morning. If that wasn't enough, Alicia made a kitty litter birthday cake complete with tootsie roll poop. We hope that Ada doesn't get any ideas for future 'yummies.' Markus helped celebrate the birthdays and Bjorn and Jenny came back from the getaway to help celebrate Esther's birthday. Papa and Farmor are back to just themselves in Southworth as summer weather seems to finally be setting in.