Saturday, November 1, 2014

Photo Fridays: Week 56

Happy Halloween (to those of you in the U.S. where it is celebrated, that is). 
 Here is a look at our week:


 We carved Jack-O-Lanterns.  Caleb was in a lousy mood that night after missing his afternoon nap, so we gave his a sad face.  (He was actually pretty happy that it was sad, if that makes sense!)


Greg actually remembers Halloween (a holiday that isn't celebrated in Papua New Guinea), and so he is very much looking forward to trick-or-treating tonight.


As you can see, our little raccoon is not as thrilled about his costume as big brother fireman is.  I bet he'll warm up once he starts getting some candy though.



In other news, we started digging up the dahlias this week. 

Brian driving the tractor with the digger behind.


After the tubers are dug, they need to be washed - a wet, often very cold job.  Here's the dahlia lady herself, hard at work.


There is a tent set up with stations for up to six people to be washing at the same time.  I have always managed to be very pregnant or to have a newborn when we've visited at digging time, and so I've always gotten out of this job...


...but I'm not off the hook entirely.  I've been working at the much drier and easier job of sorting the washed tubers into their respective boxes (over 200 varieties!) in the barn where they will spend the winter.

And what do the boys do while we are working?  They put on their boots and get muddy of course!  Greg had a blast following behind the tractor and gathering up all of the worms that we turned up.  Caleb dutifully followed Greg around and copied whatever he did.


For the last week or two Greg has been collecting "raskol bugs" in this jar.  His favorite pastime has been to go down to where the dahlias are planted and to search for these little beetles.  He's caught well over a hundred.  I stopped counting.  I made him empty out his jar one day because it was so full I couldn't put any new bugs in without five escaping.  He took his empty jar out to the flowers and promptly caught 25 more.


A "raskol bug" in it's native environment.



Brian has been spending almost every spare hour out in the shop trying to fix up his parents' flatbed truck.  It has been a frustrating project and has taken much longer than he suspected.  He says he'll finish today.  Hopefully!


Daddy invited the boys and I to come with him on an early-morning run to the parts store in town.  Surprise! - it happens to be next to the local doughnut shop.  The boys were very happy with their breakfast treat.


We had one of those "oh yeah, we have third-culture kids" moments when we realized that neither of our boys had any clue what the  little cardboard milk carton contained or how to go about opening and drinking it.


 Still waiting on baby Frey.  Here's a pic of me this morning at 39 weeks.  I feel tired and very, well, stretched out, but otherwise fine.   Maybe some news for you all next week?  We shall shall see!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Photo Fridays: Week 55

It's been a fairly quiet and wet week here in Oregon.  Here are a few photos for you:

Rainy days keep us inside more, but at least Grandma had these fun hats for the boys to play with.  Caleb loves taking them off and on.


He makes us wear them too.  There is one hat that looks like the Cat in the Hat's hat, but orange.  Someone always has to wear that one when we read the book.


Sunday was actually lovely weather, and we enjoyed a cider-pressing party with the church.


 A nice seat Greg and I discovered one day while exploring a park in Salem.


 Sometimes you just can't let the rain stop you from playing outside!


 This book was one of Greg's favorites last time we visited Oregon - now Caleb loves it too.  (Thanks Great-grandma Simmons!)


 I miss seeing this in Papua New Guinea.

Until next week...

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Photo Fridays: Week 54

A lot of photos for you this week - it's been a busy one.  No photos of the practical things we've been doing, such as doctors appointments, touring the hospital birth center, and sorting out paperwork and things that have been piling up.  No - we just took photos of the fun stuff. 


 
Another birthday party for these guys?  The Oregon family wanted to have a party for Caleb and Brian as well.  It was a good time with some family we haven't seen in quite a while.  Caleb is now so used to having leftover cake in the house (from birthdays and weddings) that he will request "just cake" for lunch.


Greg loves being a help around the farm.  Here he is moving irrigation pipe with Grandma.  He has also been very "helpful" in the dahlia field and in the garden.


We spent a lot of time at the coast this week.  On Saturday we went crabbing at Netarts.  we had heard rumor that the crabbing was awesome...


...it wasn't.  At first our pots were pretty full, but unfortunately none of the them were big enough to be keepers.  Our daily total: Zero crabs.


We had uncle Tim along to help us.


Greg still enjoyed riding around in the boat.  His official job was to measure any crabs we thought might be big enough.  (He wasn't very busy).



Caleb was a little less impressed with the whole process.  (He was more concerned with picking all the M&M's and pretzels out of the bowl of trail mix you see behind him there.)


As you can see, it didn't take Brian long to find some engines to work on.  He helped his brother with his truck, and has a few more projects in mind.


Caleb was happy to find that his legs are long enough to ride grandpa's old tricycle, unlike the bigger one we have in PNG.


Brian and I were able to take a trip to the northern Oregon coast without the kids for two nights.  I had never been north of Tillamook, and Brian has always been talking about places up near Astoria that he wanted to show me.  We got a hotel on the beach in Seaside, and spent time exploring the surrounding area.


Lunch at Camp 18, a restaurant dedicated to the history of the logging industry in the Pacific Northwest.  Lots of antique logging equipment and old photos to look at.  (No wonder Brian has been talking about this place ever since I met him...) 


 Pretty fall color.


Canon Beach.  The weather was amazingly good for the typically rainy northern coast.


A replica of Fort Clatsop - the camp where the Lewis and Clark expedition spent a miserable, wet winter after finally reaching the Pacific.  Growing up in Colorado, we learned about Lewis and Clark, but it was never a huge deal (because they skipped Colorado on their journey!!!).  After marrying an Oregonian, I learned that  Lewis and Clark is a BIG deal up here  (and the whole Oregon Trail thing too... go figure!).


We did get caught out in the rain while walking through the National Park, but Oregon sure is pretty, even when it's all wet.


 The Astoria Column - again, surprisingly great weather!  Sorry the photo of me is so small - but it should still be obvious that we're about ready to welcome baby Frey.  Three weeks to go!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Photo Fridays: Week 53

We started out our week trying to fit in a bit more Colorado fall fun before we had to leave.

We took the boys to The Farm at Lee Martinez Park this week.  They had a blast.


 
Caleb gets acquainted with the goats.


They wanted to get a pumpkin, but we said they would have to wait until we got to Oregon.


We drove up to Estes Park Sunday afternoon.  We were a little late to see the most spectacular fall color, as many of the aspens had already dropped their leaves.  Still, it was a good outing, and I had really wanted to go for a drive in the mountains before winter hit Colorado.

We didn't realize that last weekend was Elk Fest, and the town was packed with people coming up to hear the elk bugling.  Sighting elk in Estes Park is kind of like shooting fish in a barrel.  As you can see, this herd was right in the middle of town, and was surrounded by a camera-toting crowd.  We just did a quick drive-by:
 


We then drove up Trail Ridge Road.  Greg was super excited about "going to the snow mountains" and the whole way he talked and talked about playing in the snow.


 
When we got there, Caleb was the one who actually enjoyed playing with snow.  It was too cold for Greg.

We asked the boys if they wanted to climb the trail to the lookout, and they were both eager.   By the time we made it to the top, both had changed their tune.  It was very windy and COLD!  A stranger offered to take a photo of us, so here is Brian and I attempting to face into the wind, while the boys turned their heads and cried.  They were very happy to get back to the warmth of the car!


Back at a more hospitable altitude, we stopped at this meadow at sunset as the elk were starting to bugle.  Gorgeous!  (And the guys are pretty good lookin' too...)

Wednesday we flew from Colorado to Oregon.  We are now getting settled in for a two-month stay with Brian's parents. 


 Grandma and Grandpa had some fun toys waiting for the boys.


How cool is this?!!


We missed out on berry season in Oregon this year, but at least we made it here while the dahlia field was still in bloom.  Talk about fall color!


Only a short time left to stop by and walk through the field or pick yourself a bouquet.  Soon we'll be helping to cut these beauties down and dig up the tubers for winter.  Does this make you want to order some for your garden next year?  Visit www.freysdahlias.com

 
 Grandma named a dahlia variety after Greg.  He is thrilled, and told me that he plans to go out to the field and pick one for me every day. :-)

Until next week!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Photo Fridays: Week 52

Week 52... that means I've been doing Photo Fridays for a whole year now!

This was another week of re-connecting with my (Susan's family):

The big event, of course, was my brother's wedding.  We've considered Meggin part of the family for quite a while now, but it's nice to officially have her as my new sister-in-law.  It was a lovely wedding and a fun evening.  (Thanks for throwing such a great party guys!)


I realized it's hard to take an arms-length selfie with a 50mm lens and when you've assigned auto-focus to another button than the shutter button...


The boys have a nice, big room to stay in, with plenty of room for building large Lego train tracks.



The city of Fort Collins has this 90-year-old trolley that runs on weekends in the summer.  Brian realized that last Sunday was the last day of the season that it was running, so we took the boys for a trolley ride after church.




Caleb fell asleep, as would be expected on a warm day, riding in a vehicle at nap time.  Greg stayed wide awake though and enjoyed the whole ride thoroughly.



Playing cars with Grandpa Dale.


 Yesterday we took the boys to the Silver Grill Cafe for a cinnamon roll - a must-do activity when in Fort Collins.  (I used to work there, way back in the day when I was still in college.)



 And yesterday we also got to spend some time with my older brother, his wife, and our nephews and nieces.  Three out of four in one picture isn't bad...


 And then there is this guy... always too busy to be pinned down for a photo with his siblings.

Until next week!