Charlie at the Coast

15 07 2011

The car was packed, so I knew something good was happening, but I didn’t know what until after a loooooong car ride.  We were camping!  At the beach!  I was really excited, but waited patiently while my people set up camp.  Then…

… we finally went to the beach, and I ran and ran and ran and ran.  It was great!

I got to meet lots of people who were also on the beach.

These were my favorite people:

They fed me lots and lots of cheese and crackers even though my mom said just a little cheese was okay.  I liked them!

All that running and eating got me tired so I was okay when we stopped for a little nap.

But after a nap, I was ready for more action.

And those stupid seagulls were just perfect for some inspiration to exercise.

I would have stayed forever and even found a good place to hide.

But my people said it was time to go home.

As much as I like the beach, I guess I like home, too.

Maybe we’ll go again tomorrow…





15 07 2011

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Before and After

17 08 2010

Three weeks before my wedding, which was to be held at our home, Jason and I toured the three acres and decided where to have our ceremony.

Three weeks of yard work in the high desert is hardly enough to make a space presentable.  Especially on a “we need need to finish rebuilding our house after accidentally gutting it and put in new windows and a new roof” budget.

But it was my wedding.

So with the help of my soon-to-be sister-in-law and soon-to-be aunt-in-law, I got to work.

I didn’t work any miracles, but I did make a dent in the dry, weedy chaos of the front yard.  I didn’t take nearly as many “before” pictures, but here are a few comparison shots:

So that covers the yard work.  I guess the wedding comes next…

This and That

5 08 2010

In 8 days, I’m getting married.  At my house.  Which is under construction.

If that doesn’t excuse me from frequent blog posts, I don’t know what will.

I spent the first month of summer vacation pretty much refusing to do anything remotely productive, and I really don’t regret that time.  But when I got back from Costa Rica, I entered blind-panic-frantic-help-me-one-hundred-people-are-descending-on-my-house-in-a-month mode.  What a rush.

I’ve been attempting to bring my yard back from the brink of death.  The results?  My back is peeling from a blistered sunburn, my arms are scratched, my feet are black from gardening in Crocs, my hands are blistered, my nails are torn and cracked, and my back is so sore I can’t stand up.  Oh, yeah, and my yard has reached a mediocre, could-be-worse state that is simply going to have to do.

And then I got a speeding ticket.

Jason told my mom over the phone.  “Jill got a speeding ticket,” he said.  “Jill did?” my mom asked, stunned.  The thing is, I never really go over the speed limit.  But I was trying to pass some guy before the end of the passing lane, he kept speeding up – and over the crest of the hill we were reaching came an entire convoy of police returning from a conference.

Okay, so tough break.

The fact is, it’s still summer vacation.

So let’s just…

My soon-to-be aunt and I enjoy the boat after a long day of chores and hard work.

Sometimes, you just have to let it go.

Commencement of Camping Season

23 06 2010

Camping Kick-Off, Trip #1 to Davis Lake for the summer, was fabulous.  I missed my boys, though; this was my first camping trip without Carbon by my side since I’ve known him, and Jason is off with his crew this week.

Charlie, however, got right to business, terrorizing the little ground squirrel things twice as fiercely as usual in Carbon’s absence.  Here he is, trying to track one down that escaped into the rocks around our fire pit:

No worries, the rodent was perfectly safe, and laughing at Charlie from across the clearing.

We were mostly left to ourselves, with the exception of the ranger, to whom I was polite; and some yahoo geezer who drove into my camp, parked, and strode right past me to take in the view with hardly a word to me, to whom I was as rude as his silence allowed me to be.  No serial killers on this trip, which is good in the overall scheme of things, but my near-demise probably would have made a better post than benign pictures of a great sunset:

We got our favorite spot, the sun was out (except for a brief thunder shower), the mosquitoes… well, they were biting.  But not enough to chase us away.

All in all, the trip was short, but oh-so-sweet.  And the shower when I got home was almost as good.

Summer Vacation, Days 2 and 3

18 06 2010

When I met up with the crew, Jason was busy dealing with this little incident.

No harm done, just a little wetter than anybody realized. Two feet of mud is pretty deep.

Charlie and I headed off to enjoy the valley's greenery.

And we looked good doing it, too. Meanwhile, the crew had to work. Gotta love being a teacher, at least in late June.

We saw a little bit of wildlife. Not much sun, so this snake was moving very slowly.

On our second day, we did some more hiking while Jason worked. Here, Charlie is refreshing himself with some spring water. Just wait for the giardia post.

Here is us, not lost, which is good because I left my Christmas GPS from my mom at home.

On our second hike of the day, 13-year-old Charlie put up quite a bit of resistance. It made me nostalgic for those days when he could hike 14 miles in a day, take a nap, and wake up and do it again.

Charlie was DONE at this point. No posing for the camera, no time for a second shot or readjusted camera positioning. See how lovingly I tried to force his head into the shot? He was determined to head down the trail back to the car.

SO, I didn’t get my sleeping all day, my couch-and-book time, my chore time.  But I did get slightly better photos than I would have if Jason hadn’t convinced me to drive over here.  Although I do look good in bunny slippers.

From the Road

18 06 2010

Day 1 of my summer vacation ended with the commencement of my first trip of the summer.  Jason’s crew is training in the college town in which he lived until last September.  His parents live nearby.  While I had big plans to sleep late, lay on the couch and read, and finish up a variety of domestic maintenance tasks, Jason lured me west with talk of a river float.  The river didn’t cooperate, but I headed over the mountain anyway.  Because I do like floating rivers, but I’m rather fond of Jason, too.

The drive from high desert to mountain pass to valley wasn’t nearly as dramatic as usual, since this year’s record-breaking rainfall has damaged the desert’s arid reputation.  And the rain continued all along my drive.  It didn’t make for great driving conditions, but you have to just drink up all that green.

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