A Birthday Surprise

We had a little get together to celebrate my brother's birthday and he had NO idea. Which really is not much of a surprise because he never has any idea what the plan is for anything. It usually surprises him when we are at his house when he gets home from dinner, which usually happens three times a week.
The party consisted of just a few friends getting together for some hamburgers, corn hole, and a fire pit. It was the perfect get-together.

 Line was reading to Charlie and it was so sweet.
 Ben needed to make sure that all his boards matched.


Play Dates and Popsicles

You can never have too many playdates. They are the best excuse to get out of the house with your baby and sit and chat with other moms. What's not to love? For this particular playdate we sat in my sister-in-laws back yard and ate cucumbers and pizza, great combination. We watched the older two kids run around the pool trying to play with the soccer ball and volley ball while not having to share. It was very entertaining. I hope to have many more playdates in the near future.

I just love those cheeks!

Daniel was having a bit of a hard time eating his popsicle without it getting all over his hands.


Garlad Street Fair

I went to the Garland Street Fair and had a little one-on-one time with Charlie while Andy waited in the car shop for them to figure out what was wrong with our car (major bummer). The city shuts off the Garland District and they fill it with music, games, food, and booths of all kinds. We have gone before but this year they really stepped it up. They had two venues for music and TONS of booths everywhere. It ended up being a great day of just wandering the streets and eating french fries and chocolate malts. I can't wait for next year when Charlie can participate in some of the fun!

The fair has a Wizard of Oz theme and they had costume contests and painted this awesome yellow brick road.

This band was very entertaining to watch, they were all playing xylophones!

It was about 90 degrees that day so we had some nice breaks of sitting in A/C. One visit was in Ferguson's Diner and a lady ended up treating me to my lunch because I nursed Charlie in the restaurant! Score!


Farmer's Market

Farmers markets are intimidating. Maybe its just that I never go with a plan of what I need, but I'm overwhelmed the second I step into the middle of the tents. I wander around and look at what everyone has to offer, but I never want to commit. I think part of me wants to make sure I get the best deal, and when they are all so close it makes it seem like it would be easy, but its not. I think that maybe if I start going on a regular basis then I will get the hang of it. This time we got some delicious blueberries, cherries, and nectarines! Next time I think I'll grab some kale and try to make kale chips.

Liz was on call for the hospital which is only a few blocks away so she got to come down and chat for a bit. 

He sure does love his toes.


Blackberry Picking

 On our way  back from California we stopped in Hillsboro, OR to stay with Andy and Becca's grandparents (who really are the sweetest people you will ever meet). They have an amazing backyard that is their very own forrest and has blackberries! The boys had cut out a trail and found some good blackberry bushes so we decided to go pick some. Most of them weren't ripe yet, but we did end up getting a few. They are the best in some vanilla ice cream, THE BEST.

Line had her own container and was very excited anytime you added to her stash.

The neighbors might be missing some blackberries from their bushes in the front :\

I can't wait to go huckleberry picking sometime this summer!


(Burnt) Dehydrated Strawberries

Last year I got a (new to me) dehydrator from Andy's family farm. I used it for apples and they worked pretty good. So, when my dad picked me about 5 pounds of strawberries I thought it would be the perfect time to experiment with it! I simply rinsed and sliced them and then stuck them on the dehydrator racks. I ended up dehydrating them a bit too long and then ended up tasting a little burnt :( I had tried them when they were eight hours in, but I thought they needed more time so I left them in there for another four or five hours and they were crispy, but had a hint of burnt flavor. What a bummer. Oh well, it was worth a shot. I'll have to try it with just a few strawberries next time.

In unrelated news, Charlie is doing so good at sitting up!


California Part 4: Sparklers

Nothing like sparklers to celebrate the last day together. The kids LOVE them. I LOVED them. Sparklers are just so much fun. You can spell your name, swirl it around, and feel like a fairy; so pretty much the greatest thing ever invented. The younger girls were so much fun to watch as this was their first experience with them, at first they were unsure but after that first spark they were sold.
I am so very glad to have had this time with my whole family and finally have everyone meet Charlie. Until next time.


California Part 3: Yosemite

Andy has this thing where he can never open his eyes for pictures :)

Yosemite! We decided to have a little day trip to Yosemite. It just ended up being one car load and a long curvy road. It was fun! For being such a short trip we seemed to see quite a bit, including a car flipped over! I'm not exactly sure how it could have happened as the speed limit is seriously 20 mph, but anythings possible. Just driving through made me want to go camping so bad! Good thing we are planning on going in a few weeks. Oh, summer, how I love the activities you bring.

Ben waded to the other side and I so wish I could have joined him.

Poor baby had a fever for a few days, but it was fun to snuggle with him :)