Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Making Sugared Flowers with Big Sister

This is a tedious project, but fun to have as an
edible decoration for parties or special desserts.

First Helena got the job of picking and then 
washing all the nice viola flowers.
(Washing is a must since ours are under the bird 
bath and ahem…)

After a thorough drying, you paint them with egg white.

This is a tedious process so it's nice to have a big 
sister along to help--Emily made herself available 
for this project.

After painting, you carefully dust them with
sugar and let dry thoroughly.

The finished products--these can be stored in an 
air-tight container for months.
They are quite pretty and tasty too!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Mackinac Island Visit

Emily and Kristin had the opportunity to visit
Mackinac Island with a good friend. 
 Emily and our friend were playing in an evening concert, but
they had the day to explore the island.

They rode over to the island on Shepler's Ferry "Felicity".
(always a photo bomber)

Look out from Arch Rock
This was really beautiful as the fog rolled in.

At the look out from Arch Rock

Sugar Loaf--this was as far as Emily went.
No climbing gear made it a little difficult.

Sugar Loaf from afar

Hiking near one of the caves.

These are photos from British Landing.  You'll have to study up on your Mackinac Island history to understand the name and the cannon.

Brown's Brook was a nice shady spot.

Devil's Kitchen--creepy name, but interesting cave

Pontiac Lookout was a great spot for a group photo
before the concert.  They had a splendid day!

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Young Robin Casualty

Sunday morning brought us another bird casualty.
This one became stuck between our family room 
casement window and the screen.  

It's claw was stuck in the screen and it had knocked its head
on the glass.   Benjamin and I managed to get it dislodged
and he got to hold it.

It still has prominent spots so it couldn't be too old.

Feeling better and almost time to fly away.
After this, it began to hop away with Benjamin following.
It was a funny sight, but that encouraged birdie to head for
a nearby tree.

Thankfully, Benjamin managed to stay clean and didn't 
have to change again before church :)

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Flute with Big Sister

Flute lessons are more fun when your teacher is your
big sister.

Helena is about to graduate to a big flute.
This is very exciting for her.  She will still
need the curved head joint for a while, but she
will have the standard key spacing and length.
She can hardly wait!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Hay-bale fun

A local farmer baled hay in the adjacent field which
gave us ample opportunities for fun. 

These become great obstacles for climbing, back-stops
for baseball, and targets for archery.

Most of all they're great for photo ops. :)

Thursday, July 23, 2015


We celebrated our fun day at the falls with our 
traditional lime cheesecake.  Yummy!!!

It was also our 26th wedding anniversary so there was 
much to celebrate!  It was great to be able to share it 
with friends too :)

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Fun at the Falls

After our picnic, we headed to the upper falls area 
where James met a new friend.

This is as close as we'll probably ever come to a 
bull moose.

We started out at an observation area and then headed to the 90+ step deck to view the falls as close as you can get.

The "young" ones on the deck

The "not as young" ones on the deck

These are the lower falls in the background.
We (all but James and Bob) hiked the 4 mile
river trail there from the upper falls.  I had always wanted
to do this, and was glad for the opportunity.  I was
even more glad that Bob could meet us at the lower falls with the car!!!

The lower falls are really pretty, though not quite as impressive. 

Amazingly, these two still managed a good smile
after the hike despite having been the "leaders of the pack".

Things to remember for future hikes:
1)  Take water
2)  Take BUG SPRAY!!!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Big Pines Picnic Area

Every picnic needs the "eating" pose.  
You know the one where you're just taking
a big bite of food...

…and the photographer takes a picture right then :)
Okay this one is missing the food and was a bit posed,
but it's still good.

More fun on the beach

Kristin was a bit chilly so she found an 
obliging picnic blanket.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Iroquois Point Lighthouse

We visited Iroquois Point Lighthouse for the first time this year.
It is on a beautiful part of Whitefish Bay on the shores of
Lake Superior.

We always enjoy the lighthouse though I don't
attempt the climb to the top.  It took me days to
recover the last time I tried that--ugh!

Everyone else enjoyed the climb to the top and got to
see the beautiful view.

We enjoyed investigating the shoreline and most
people stayed dry…ahem.

The group shot          

 As it was time for lunch, we reluctantly headed out for the picnic area a few miles down the road.
I was amazed how much time we spent at the beach area and how much everyone enjoyed it.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

First Tuesday Night Concert of the Year

We spent the first concert night this year with some 
new friends.  

We looked like a pretty small group once the band
members left for rehearsal.

The dads got our chairs all set up.
It was a colorful line-up.

Helena and James had a new friend to entertain
them while we waited.

It was a relatively mild night so no one was too cold.  It was a good start for the 33rd season, and the fudge snack afterward wasn't too bad either :)

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Labeling Fruit Pies

If you make fruit pies with a top crust, it's
pretty difficult to tell them apart without cutting so...

Emily made their initials out of some extra crust.  Of
course Benjamin and Christopher thought they were their
own personal pies :)

Friday, July 17, 2015

Railing Project

Recently, James got to help put a railing on the play equipment in the backyard.  Any time the cordless drill and other tools are being used, James is quite eager to be involved. 

It's always more difficult to use tools when you have to reach over your head, but James is getting the hang of it.

He got to learn how to level the bottom post, and 
learned the answer to the question: "What's the bubble for?"

Time to attach the post... 

Helena got to help too.
She found out that those screws are
 really long, and you have to push
 really hard.


Sometimes you need a little extra power
from Dad to get the job done.

…he said he wanted to carry it :)

Time to put the rails on.  James got to do a lot of holding and clamping before they were ready for the final assembly. 

Oooo…such concentration!

All done!
There's much satisfaction when you've done a job well.