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Friday, July 20, 2012

Trail's End Ranch 2012

Horses and Ziplines and Ducks, Oh My!

My Indian Princess and I went to camp this week.  Trail's End Ranch is a bible camp in the mountains of Montana that has a few other activities.

The camp is unique in that although it is designed for 3rd grade and up, younger campers can go as long as they bring their moms (or dads).  This is a spectacular arrangement for a 6 year old who loves all the fun, but is too young to be without Mom overnight.

Her counselor kept her group busy from 9-12, and from 1-5.  I got to eat every meal with her, then take her back to the cabin in the evening and have a slumber party with her and some friends.  I have to tell you, the counselors up there are golden.  Amazing young men and women who love the Lord and love the kids.

The camp is located on a working ranch, so along with the camp counselors and staff, we got to meet the ranch hands and their families.  Once again.  I love ranchers.  They seem to have the important stuff figured out.  They fix things that are broken instead of buying new.  They teach their kids how to work and play hard.  They respect the animals they work with but don't get too worked up over a dead frog.

As I was getting to know the people a little better, my Indian Princess was doing boring things like swimming, crafts, horse back riding, ziplining, big swinging, rock climbing, squirt gunning stuff.  She had hour long meetings where she learned more about Christ. She was also learning how to make decisions on her own.  Primarily, what snacks should she buy at the Snak Shak.  First time she's gotten to do that without Mom's help.  Let's just say the last day she was on a sugar high so long she was buzzing for a solid two hours.

I know she had a good time, because today I asked her if she was glad to be back at home.  With Daddy and The Littlest Girl.  She said, "Not really."  And walked around bored all day.  Asking me to go outside and take a walk with her.  In the 100 degree heat.  Which now feels normal.

Watching her at camp was definitely bittersweet.  It is a good introduction for me on how school will go this fall when she's gone all day for the first time.  I loved to watch her successfully navigate camp on her own.  I gained confidence in letting her go, even for a little while.  And I clung to her when she came back to me, hungry for a big hug and some time to hear about her experiences.  But she didn't miss me as much as I missed her.  And I think that is going to be the norm from now on.  And I think I'm going to be a little more sad from now on as I watch her start the natural process of growing up.

All in all, camp was a great experience.  And one she'll probably never have again, as I am going upstairs to lock her in her room for the next 20 years.  Maybe by then, I'll be ready to let her go.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Where In The World Is...?

This is where we spent our anniversary.  
Can anyone guess where we are?

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


A few pics of my husband and me.  In honor of our 20th anniversary.
I could write a bunch of sentimental stuff.
But it's late.  I'm tired.
And I don't want to embarrass myself.
But make sure you check out the moose we saw in Canada. 
Second picture down.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Where I Live

OK.  It's not exactly where I live.  But this is the area in which I live.  
And yes.  That's Dekker.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Ha Ha! I Win!

We were blessed to have friends visit us this weekend.  And I get to post it to my blog first.  Only because my friends have a two day drive and she has multiple loads of laundry to do before she can get to her computer.  

Anyway, we spent a little time picking up before they got here.  We were to see them at church, have them over for lunch afterwards, and I had been doing some last minute preparations.  I went to the basement to find the girls, only to see pink and yellow polka dots on the carpet.  After much threatening and gnashing of teeth, I found out my Littlest Girl had decided to color the carpet.  With marker.  To make it look pretty.  Needless to say, we were late for church.  Which always goes over well for the pastor's family.

We met our friends at church.  And it was SO GOOD to see them!  They eventually made it through the throngs of church members wanting to catch up.  And headed to our house.  

Lunch was going to be awhile.  
So we let the kids get started on the afternoon activities.

Yes.  There are SIX little bodies in that pool.  
No one complained.  No one asked for the sprinkler.  
It was simply fantastic.

When lunch was finally ready.  The big girls took their spots under a shady tree.  
My Littlest Girl was doing her best Steve impression.  
(Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs Steve.)  
She is scarily accurate.

The rest of us decided to eat inside.  
It was cooler.  Less flies.  And more places to put food.

The grilled corn on the cob seemed to go over well.

I think she had been cut off from the cherries.  It was very sad.

At the last minute, we realized we would really like to have a picture of all of us together.  Because really.  How often does that happen?

I took this one.  On the off chance that I wouldn't get another chance to take a picture of my friends.  And I wanted to have a picture of Ade, so that everyone knew she had been there.  Because as you know, most moms do NOT make the vacation pics.

We got a great formal-ish pic.  My Indian Princess was obsessing about the scratch on her elbow she received when she wiped out on her scooter.

This is the photographer.  
She takes after her mom and dad.  

Sadly, they had to leave.  Immediately after they had pulled out of the driveway, my daughters asked when they were going to see their new friends again.  
And my heart swelled.  
Because it's always good when you can't wait to see your friends again.  
New, or otherwise.

We came inside.  Sighed a contented sigh. 
Plopped down on the couch.  Rested a few minutes.  
And then I taught my Littlest Girl how to take pink and yellow polka dots out of a carpet.

All in all, it was a very good day.