Happy Family Friday, Y’all!
Nothing like a quiet Saturday morning at home for some Family Breakfast time.
Lots of jelly making going on last week. We picked a gallon or so of raspberries at Dude’s house on Sunday.
Ellie is really good at picking raspberries. She even puts some of them in the bucket!
Evie and Ellie love hanging out with Dude and Susie.
Then we went to Deedee and Papa’s house, where we picked more berries
And ate some delicious berry pie.
Of course then we had to turn the berries into something, jelly, or jam, or pie filling or something. You would think you could just freeze them and put them in the freezer until you needed them, but that is actually more work than canning them. They have to be carefully laid out in pans and then frozen (which means clearing out a space in the freezer, the real bottleneck of the process) and frozen, then have the frost knocked off before they are bagged. Otherwise they freezer burn.
Fortunately, the squeezo is so easy to use that a couple of two little girls can reduce a gallon of raspberries to juice in about ten minutes. Raspberry lemonade concentrate anyone?
Daddy found two ripe blackberries on one of his ruckmarches….
They will be coming in hard in a couple weeks.
Our garden is coming along somewhat fitfully these days. It is an unusually cold and wet July around here. One of our San Marzano tomatoes has blossom rot, but the other one is doing nicely.
The rest of the tomatoes are only blossoming so far.
Something has been eating our pepper plants alive, something we haven’t been able to find yet, but we suspect it is aphids. Fortunately, some ladybugs have moved in and have set up housekeeping on the beans…
And on the chamomile.
We will see if they are able to get the aphids in check once they all hatch.
Then comes the weekend and packing for our camping trip!
Think two pounds of butter will be enough for three days, two nights?
Especially when we are bringing all kinds of other food? You bet! Butter makes Mommy’s world go round!
Meanwhile, Daddy does not understand Evie and Ellie’s fascination with Mommy’s fancy shoes.
So there we were, Friday afternoon after Mommy got home from work, we all piled into the old rattlebang and drove out to Scenic Beach State Park. We arrived a little after 7:00 PM, well past the girls’ supper time (actually past their bedtime too) so they we were super rambunctious and over-excited.
While Daddy set up the tent with the girls’ help, Mommy got the Dutch oven going and heated up some of her home-made coconut shrimp. Ronny and Amanda and RJ joined us while we were getting this set up, and we had a lovely meal together.
Of course it was a late night, almost 10:30 when we went to bed, and the girls were super tired. Ellie was almost beside herself. She did not want to lay down anywhere out of arms reach of Mommy and Daddy.
But sleep conquers even the tiredest of babies eventually, and all the kids passed out before midnight.
Which was perfect, since they all woke up again at 5:30 on Saturday morning. Yay! Camping!
Mommy got the breakfast started in style with a raspberry cream cheese breakfast bake.
The cast iron certainly got a workout over the weekend.
Saturday after breakfast we hiked along the trail down to the beach. Turns out Ellie is a great hiker. She handled half a mile hike along a very rough trail full of roots and rocks,
not to mention running around on the rocky beach and climbing up the barnacle encrusted logs.
Yes, the beaches in Washington are rocky. Yes the water is cold and dirty. Still a great time for a family with young kids. Daddy even made a sling and threw some zingers 100+ meters out into the Hood Canal.
As might be expected, the small people were all over-tired cranky butts by lunchtime, so we put them down for a nap. They were out in about half a decade of the Rosary or less. While they were sleeping Uncle Adam and Aunt Maryanne came with Edmund and Annarose, so after naps all the kids went down to the playground to shake their sillies out, and wiggle their waggles away. Except RJ, who was still resisting a rest and consequently could not be happy.
Uncle Adam brought his backpack weighted with 60+ Lbs of peat gravel to carry around for exercise, since he hadn’t gotten a run in that morning. Not content with that, we decided to up the ante with a little Dad-ruck action.
Saturday was an even later night. The kids had all gotten enough of a nap (even RJ) that excitement was stronger than sleepiness, so we were up past 11. Oh well.
Ryan was up at 5:30 tending the fire all by himself until first Ronny and then Ellie joined him.
Eventually, everyone meandered out for breakfast and packing up the campsite, before heading in to Gig Harbor for 11:00 Mass.
Good weekend. Ryan and Ronny cracked this open Friday night, and with Adam’s help managed to finish it before bed on Saturday.
Consequently we didn’t touch any of the beer we had brought but this was so smooth and fiery that no one missed it.
Now here we are, on the home again, doing our regular home thing. Ryan is job searching, so far unsuccessfully. Everyone keeps saying, “We’d love to hire you for this job… after you have a couple years of experience doing the job.” No, experience in the military as a medic doesn’t seem to carry any weight on a resume. Oh well, we’ll keep searching and praying.
We had a minor setback in the garden, with the unusually blustery summer weather. It blew the lid on the planter box shut and shattered one of the windows.
But mostly it’s just the usual work, school and family stuff, aka:
Drinking bubble tea
And growing up way too fast (and also reading more books).
And that’s all for this week, folks. God Bless, have a great weekend, and God Bless.