Thursday, April 25, 2013

Spring Babies

The view in my backyard.

Yes, I agree.  I am one lucky person.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Something in the Water?

In light of my previous post, I think you will enjoy this little project I found my kids engaged in.  With no prompting.  Really.  But I did run and get my camera. 
"Hi Girls.  What are you up to?" 

"And what is that beeping buzzing noise?"

"Oh, I see.  You are completing an electrical circuit with a buzzer to send Morse Code signals.  What a good idea!"

Friday, April 19, 2013

The Project

I had a problem.  The radio in my car was dying a slow, agonizing death.  Sometimes I could turn it on, but couldn't change the channel.  Sometimes, the screen just showed garbled bits of lines and dots instead of stations.  And sometimes, I couldn't even turn it off, so I had to turn down the volume instead.
But when the CD died, that was the last straw.
So, I had myself a new project.  I ordered a new car stereo, which came with instructions for the removal and replacement.  Here's what that looked like.
I went to hook up the wiring harness, only to find I was missing a part.  So I drove around with a big hole in my dash for a week or so.  Then, I got the part and went back to work.
This part was pretty fun and easy, after I figured out the process.
New one, ready to go!  Old one, off to the side.  So sad and lonely.
Ahhhhh.  It's IN!  I have tunes! 
But...What's this?  There's no....How do I....
There's no ON button!  So after ALL THAT, I just push buttons until it accidentally comes on.
So with a heavy sigh, I'm off to look for the manual, so I can see what the little buttons mean, and which one is the code for "ON".  So much for my technical wizardry.
I do have one more thing to add.  Throughout this whole project (including the time while I was driving around with my carjacked-looking dash, Mark never said a word.  Never offered to help, never chuckled at my mishaps.  Just carried on with his own jobs and projects.
And I choose to think it is because he knows I'm fully capable of doing these things.  And THAT is love and honor, to me.  Not for everyone, I know.  But for me, it was a treasured affirmation.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Yosemite Adventure

Another one of our Spring Break mini-adventures was a car-camping trip to Yosemite.  We did several things we had never done before.  First, we went to the Mariposa Grove to see the giant sequoias there. 
Here are my giant children in front of a small sequoia.

No, wait.  Here is my tiny family in front of the same tree.  Just one of those little life lessons--your perspective can really change things, eh?
Interestingly, the Mariposa Grove was a little less impressive to me than the McKinley Grove, which is a little closer to home, by Shaver Lake and Dinkey Creek (You may remember my highly controversial post about Big A*^ Trees).

The Merced River ran close to our campground.  It was a gorgeous spot to spend the late afternoon.

My Abigail, in a rare, quiet moment

Lower Yosemite Falls.  Mark had hopes of achieving Upper Yosemite Falls.  He overestimated his team.  And wisely recognized that before we were committed.

My Mae, the animal whisperer, trying her skills on some ducks.

And my Abigail, the rabid squirrel whisperer.  Don't mess with the squirrels!  They're cute, but they carry rabies!  Where are her parents????

Oh yes, they are far below, taking pictures of the cute little girl, peering after the rabid squirrel.  Because isn't it a pretty picture???

OK, just a really cool picture.  With Mark.

And without!

Here we are at Vernal Falls Bridge.  Awesome hike, very easy.

Now we're going up the Mist Trail.  Up many, many, slippery, wet, granite steps.  In fact, kind of scary for me, because the trail fell off steeply at times, with what my mommy eyes judged as inadequate protection for my babies from slipping and falling over the edge.   Not my favorite. 

However, the top of the Falls was pretty spectacular!  BUT remember that incident last year where three people who climbed past the warning signs, over the fence to take a picture on the rocks next to the river, slipped, and were swept over the falls?  Yep, people were still doing it.

Kind of a "we were here" shot, but I couldn't NOT put it in here!

Love my little Warriors!
Rather than going down the slippery 700 Steps on the Mist Trail, we followed The "Winter Route" up the John Muir trail.  We gained some additional elevation and some amazing views.  Here is Vernal Falls in the background below.  Highly recommend!

My Mark, the fire builder.  He was pretty intent on showing the girls how to build fires, which I loved.

Mae, practicing her new skills.

The view from our campsite.  Despite all the people, the generators, the barking dogs, still a wonderful place to be.

Mark, totally in his element, drinking his morning camping tea.  He is so happy in this environment.  And handsome too!

In the midst of all Yosemite's beauty, the girls still are irresistibly drawn to playing in the sand.  And that's OK.
Because I can think of a few thousand worse things to do!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

I Want a Pony!

Little girls and ponies.  They just go together.  Ladies, wasn't there some time in your early girlhood when you really, really, really wanted a pony?  Yeah, me too.
When we recently returned to riding lessons (because basketball season was over and we decided not to do track), we got a chance to ride Scoobie the Pony.

Here is Mae with Scoobie...
And here is Abigail.  As you can see, Scoobie is a fairly small pony. 

The girls also got a chance to use the lunge line.  Even with all the horsie things I did in my youth, I never did this!  It was really cool.  This is Jane...a beautiful horse.  Jane got a terrible rattlesnake bite last year, but she is much better now.

Scoobie got into the action, too!

 Look at the little guy go!

Cool down time.   

Thanks, Scoobie.  That was a lot of fun!

Now I'm really starting to think...where can we put a pony pen at our house?

I guess I never really grew out of the pony phase!