Tuesday, December 25, 2007

It's Christmas

Twas the day before Christmas and all through the house. The table was set, the tree was decorated.

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care.
Marlene had the dinner preparation well in hand.

The families arrived and we were ready to enjoy the meal and the celebration.

Everyone had a place at the table. The engineer had the train on track and the gifts were waiting. Everyone got "just what I always wanted."

Kids are always kids.

Now all that was left was to clean up the mess and take out the recyling. Christmas morning we woke up to snow coming down. It doesn't happen very often here in the Willamette valley of Oregon, but for a couple of hours we had a white Christmas. There won't be any flying today. This is good day to sit back and reflect on all we have been given and to wish Merry Christmas to all of you out there.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Boy's Day

Yesterday was "Boy's Day". Once a week, usually on Monday, Diana gives her boys to us for the day. Of course, Casey is not quite ready to give up Mama's milk just yet, so he stays home while Ryder and Phelan come to visit us.

For the last couple of weeks Marlene has been sewing on Halloween costumes. Ryder wanted to be Captain Hook and he thought Phelan should be Peter Pan. Phelan however had other ideas. He wanted to be a penguin. So Omy, Marlene, went to work and with her magic here are the results.

I forgot to mention, Casey was set up for the role of Tinker Bell. So, with a star on his hat and a little green vest, he makes a pretty good looking fairy. Phelan's penguin looks very real although it's not really scary. He doesn't like scarry. The penguin suits him just fine.
The thing we really appreciate about this family of boys is that they all really like each other. The older ones are constantly checking on and kissing their little brother and Casey is always alert for the other two voices in the room. His smile really comes alive when he spots them. Our day with the boys starts with the ride back to Canby. Yesterday we had an errand on the west side of the Willamette, so on the way home we took a little extra time to ride the Canby Ferry and to buy a couple of pumpkins from a roadside stand. We sure do enjoy those boys.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Hazy Fall For Flying

I've been flying a lot this week trying to take advantage of the smooth air and pretty colors. I found the time to go up Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday for a total of about 3 hours.

It's been foggy in the mornings, but it burns off around 1 or 2 pm. Yesterday there were hazy conditions late in the afternoon. As I was flying along the Willamette River at 80 miles per hour and about 500 feet above the ground and spotted this baloon sharing the sky. I circled him a couple of times and then continued on my way.
I was trying to find some really bright fall colors, but nothing really jumped out at me. So I headed back home and took these shots of our house and garden before I landed. Our trees are just beginning to turn and the yard is starting to green up again after being brown all summer long.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Gathering of Gardeners

Today was the fifth annual "Gathering of Gardeners" in Cottage Grove, Oregon. This is a small garden fair of food and plant venders along with crafts people selling their wares. It's held on the grounds of the Village Green Resort and Gardens. A couple of years ago we drove past this in our motor home and I remember looking down on the area from the freeway thinking it must be some kind of a re-enactment of a medival country fair. Marlene did some shopping in the craft area, but our main objective was to pick up some plants that we need to supplement our landscapping.

We found what we were looking for, sampled the Indian food and then loaded up the plane and headed for home. It was a gloomy day in the Willamette Valley. We flew through some rain showers and lots of smoke from the field burning, but landed safely just before the heavier rain started.

Ryder's Camp Opah and Omy

Boy, how time can fly. This could have been posted a week ago, but it's been so busy around here that I didn't get it done. Ryder came without his brothers to spend a week with us. He knew ahead of time that this wasn't going to be a week of play, but rather that he would be involved with our regular activities. So, he helped in the garden.

He also went flying with me.

His biggest accomplishment I think was that he began and finished a quilt under Marlene's guidance. This wasn't easy. He started with small squares and did all the piece work. Then he pinned it to the backing and did diagonal quilting by machine. Marlene helped, by getting him started and also holding the material from time to time when it got too heavy for him to move through the machine. The finished product was a gift for his new brother, Casey.

It wasn't all work and no play however. During the week we managed a hike along the Molalla River near Canby. He also found some time to make use of the local skate board park.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

A busy week in Canby

It was a pretty busy week in Canby. The weather was a little wetter than normal so the garden and lawn got a good soaking for a couple of days.

The boys came out for "Opah Omy" day on Wednesday. Last week Marlene asked Ryder whether he would rather have Wednesday or Thursday for "Opah Omy" day. He asked, "Which one comes sooner"? So, we had Wednesday as the day they spent with us.

Ryder spent part of the day using the sewing machine to make his Papa a birthday present. He also learned how to sew on buttons. Omy is preparing him for college.

Later in the week Marlene made a batch of crackers. She's using her desem starter, kind of like a sour dough, just rolled flat with salt and seeds sprinkled on top and baked.

While Marlene was baking, I was installing the antique wall phone on the wall in our kitchen area. Both Marlene and I had this kind of phone on the wall of our farm house when we were growing up in Wisconsin. So, when we were back there a couple of weeks ago, we bought an original Kellog wall phone from Phoneco Inc. It's a company in Galesville, Wisconsin, that buys and sells old phones.

Later in the day we met our friends at the Canby Cruise in. Hundreds of cars gathered around the park and adjoining streets which were blocked off for the event. It's a free show held annually and it's fun to go down, walk around and remember the cars we used to drive. These happen to be modified, but about half the cars are stock, restored cars from the 50's.

The weather was perfect for flying so late in the afternoon I launched the Aeronca and flew up the Willamette River. I wanted to take some pictures of friend's houses so I could give them as gifts. Before I landed, I took a shot of our own house and property.
That evening, we gathered for dinner and a game of Sequence with Paul and Debbie and Richard and Patricia.

We finished the week with a visit to the antique street fair in Oregon City. Marlene found a couple of things we could use.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Returning to Oregon living

It didn't take long to get back to doing the things we do on a regular basis. About 2 miles from our house is a peach orchard which allows "you pick". Every year we get our 30 pounds or so. It takes about 15 minutes of picking. We allow the peaches to ripen in our hanger and each morning we take a couple of the ripest ones and have them with our cereal or toast.

Laurie and Odel who had been watching our house and tending our garden moved their motor home back a little so I could pull the plane from the hanger and go out for a half an hour and knock the rust off my landings.

On Saturday Odel and I flew to McMinnville to check out the annual antique airplane gathering.

We had a special evening reuniting with Steve and Diana to celebrate their 9th anniversary. Of course this gave us a chance to see our grandsons, Ryder,


and Casey, who is now 8 weeks old.