February 25, 2011

Family Day 2/24/11 Dodson Pass/ Middle of Nowhere

Today, the five of us (bear adventured with us) climbed into the jeep and headed north/east/south. Today for our lunch I grabbed an unopened box of kix cereal, goldfish crackers and water. Let me just tell you, there ain't no McDonalds on every corner out here. We first headed out to Willow Creek than on to Big Flat Road, up over Dodson Pass, down to 3rd Fork road, through the town of Ola, through the town of Sweet and then Home again home again. Sounds simple huh? This little trip took around 4 hours (I think). Bear needed to stop a couple of times for a potty break and to stretch his legs. J This was his first adventure and he did very well!
And now for the pictures!

Ready to go... Carson, Kenzie and Bear.

Willow Creek

Willow Creek

A cool barn- somewhere in the middle of nowhere.

A potty break/exercise time for Bear

A fancy pantsy home on Big Flat Ranch-also in the
middle of nowhere.

Going over Dodson Pass.


Never know when you might need a good fire truck...  middle
of nowhere... Third Fork Road.

February 24, 2011

Family Day 2/17/11 Owyhee Mtns, Murphy, Melba, Silver City-attempt.

Today we headed south, to the Owyhee Mountains. We explored the towns of Melba, Murphy, and Dan's Ferry. We attempted to reach Silver City- but alas we must wait until the snow melts and the roads are re-opened. We also briefly explored Givens Springs- a hot springs with history. They have turned it into a swimming pool, so there wasn't really much to see besides the historical sign.
We got lunch at Dan's Ferry, a glorified gas station… lunch consisted of fig newton's, peach rings (sugar-coated candy) and m&m's. Nutritious!
Murphy was our next town 2 visit. According to Wikipedia "Murphy is an unincorporated community in Owyhee County, Idaho, United States. The county seat of Owyhee County, it is one of the smallest county seats nationwide." Estimated zip code population of the Murphy area in 2009 was 623 (according to http://www.city-data.com/zips/83650.html) Murphy does have a very nice, paved landing strip. So next time you are flying over you could just land there and check it out for yourself.
With great excitement we headed up toward Silver City, I had previously read online that the road was usually closed during the winter due to poor roads and lots of snow and whatever other reasons they might have in closing the road. We passed and videoed a mule deer family reunion… very cool!! I think we got about 12 miles on our 20 mile journey, passed a "road closed ahead" sign, and then we were faced by a sign that said: "If you travel beyond this point you will be responsible for cost of search and rescue." We turned around, with a promise to return in warmer weather.
We drove through Melba on our return home. Population 439 in the 2000 census (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melba,_Idaho) Interesting sight in this fine town was the residents parking jobs….just leave your car sticking out into the street… no big deal! Funny stuff!! We backed up just so I could get a picture of this spectacle.

Welcoming sign
The beautiful Owyhee Mountains
The Owyhee mountains from a little distance.

If it sounds to good to be true...
A back roads best friend!
Alrighty then... we turned around!
Evidently parking isn't a high priority to the fine folks
of Melba, Idaho.   

Bear- newest member of the family

Monday, February 7, 2011, our lives changed forever…. sounds dramatic huh…. actually we got a puppy. A free, pure-blood, black lab puppy- almost 8 weeks of age, joined our family. At first the kids were very apprehensive, but now they run and play with him. Carson named him Bear, a rather fitting name I think.
Our first few nights with him took me back to the newborn stage, awake every few hours, crying. Thankfully by night 3 he was sleeping through the night. (if only it were that quick with the baby humans) Now we are in the middle of potty training… Andy is working hard to get him to do his business in a specific part of the yard.
We were given a ginormous dog crate for him- Andy is a regular customer at The Coffee Shop and asked the owner if she knew of anyone wanting to sell a dog crate… she just happened to have one and give it to us. I guess all those $ 1.25 trips to The Coffee shop has paid off. J Actually, I think of it as our doggy miracle!
Bear received his first set of shots on the 16th and did just fine. Andy held him still in the kitchen sink while I administered the medication. There is quite a difference between human skin and dog skin… the thickness was a little shocking.
Now for pictures of our cute little guy.


Getting his shot.  This quite possibly was harder on me than him.

Tucanos Brazilian Grill

 Yum-O!      Not a place to visit every weekend, but definitely nice for a special occasion!
Andy and I went the weekend before Valentine's Day. We had called ahead for reservations which was wise! It seemed like everyone else in the Boise area was also there for supper.
Tucanos had a V-day special so for a few extra dollars we chose to upgrade…. which basically meant: white table cloth, a couple of extra meats, chocolate covered strawberries, and you received a rose as you left. Nice!
You start with the Festival Salad Bar it is "all you care to eat" and has 60+ cold and hot items. Everything you could possibly imagine to put on your salad… even some things such as quail eggs, which I cannot imagine putting on my salad! Then when you're ready to be bombarded with cooked veggies, grilled pineapple, and multiple types of meat cooked in various fashions, you flip your little cue to green and the fun begins. When you need a break to catch your breath, you flip your cue to red. We were served 8-10 different types of meat: grilled shrimp, whitefish, filet mignon, chicken hearts (could not eat) and I just can't remember the others.
We also ordered Brazilian Lemonades… I had mango and Andy had guava. Delicious! I failed to get a picture of our chocolate covered strawberries, but they were also very tasty! And it was very cool to walk away with a yellow rose. J

Brazilian lemonaid
The "Cue"- red = we were DONE!

Carson's Photography- we did get a better picture- I just thought
this was funny  :)

February 14, 2011

Valentine Video

Well, after several attempts to upload a video to my blog, I have failed.  Probably due to the length of this epic film.  So, if you care to follow this link, you will find a video rivaled by none other.


Disclaimer:  This video was taken before lunch and after leaving the house at 7:45 am, sitting through first service, fellowship/connection time, sunday school, and then second service.  
Despite what I say on the video, I do know all the names of our N.C. family. 
This is raw footage, unrehearsed, and undiscussed, although there was a scribbled script for the narrator.

February 6, 2011

Winter Retreat and Good friends!

January 28th -30th was our teen winter retreat. This year the camp was held in Donnelly, Idaho. We were also joined by youth groups from Boise and Lewiston. Fun and interesting! For this blog, we will stick to the fun. Steve and Mandy Buckland came to do the speaking and music. It was awesome to pick them up at the airport Thursday and spend some quality time with them. After their arrival we hit the ground running… well, actually driving. Touring downtown Boise, driving around the 'blue turf' of BSU, eating lunch at the Boise Fry Company (super yummy), visiting Mr. Trouten in Kuna, Idaho, Birds of Prey Scenic Overlook (a ginormous canyon with the snake river running through), the old mine in Pearl, Idaho and last but certainly not least our wonderful town. Yep, that was all of Thursday. Friday, we loaded the church van, bus, rented u- haul trailer and our Yukon with lots of people and all their treasures and headed for the mountains… destination Donnelly, Idaho- for winter retreat. The facilities were very nice. The weather was cold with a couple, few feet of snow on the ground. Steve did a great job preaching, his sermons fit right in to where our teens are living. Jesus was there in our services and that was so awesome! Sunday afternoon we packed up camp and headed back to our valley. Our teens did well, not major drama, no broken bones, no out-of-control pranks, good times!
The musicians on the bus.
The girls on the bus.

Andy, Carson & Kenny in the snow.
Jessie and his duck tape helmet.

Steve and Mandy were scheduled to fly out early Monday morning, they had checked into changing their tickets to a Tuesday departure, and were first told that yes for a small fee they could change their flight date, and then when they called back to change the date to Tuesday they were told that it would be $500.00 or $600.00 to extend their visit. Well, when Steve checked their flight status late Sunday night, there was a message that he could, for no extra charge, change their flight to a later date due to bad weather. So he re-booked for Tuesday morning. Long story short, they stayed with us until early Friday morning due to crazy weather back East. We loved having them get to stay longer- a gift from God! So, since God extended their visit we kept up our whirlwind touring of our fair state and also branched out into the state of Oregon.
Monday: Oregon Trail Museum in Bakers City, Oregon. (This place is totally awesome, we have been there at least 7 times, and someday I will post a blog on this museum.) We drove on to visit the small town of Sumpter, Oregon. Home to the Sumpter Valley Dredge. (This place is also very cool and I have enough pictures from previous visits to do a blog post.)
Tuesday: We drove up the Butte as far as we could until we got into the snow line. Andy and Steve decided they would do some hiking from there. So, Mandy and I and the kiddies drove home and then after z-girls bible study was over, we went back and picked them up from their great hike.
Wednesday: Andy and Steve went calling with some of the men from church. Mandy did some school work. Then we all went to Life4ce in the evening and Steve spoke to the teens.
Thursday: Our biggest "adventure" day! We left around 9:30ish and drove to McCall, Idaho-for breakfast at the Pancake House. The trip to McCall takes around 2 hours, and you might be thinking that it sounds a little crazy to drive 2 hours for breakfast…. Well, just listen to this, their pancakes are the size of dinner plates and their cinnamon rolls, are so humongous and delicious! Someday I will do a blog post on the Pancake house! It is well worth the drive! The ice festival was also going on in McCall so we walked around to get a close up view of some of the sculptures. Very cool! After saying good bye to McCall we cruised on to the town of Crouch, Idaho (population 154) and then Garden Valley, Idaho. This part of our adventure was totally about the native animals. I have never seen so many mule deer and elk in all my life. They owned the area!
Friday: Mandy and Steve flew back to their concrete jungle. We had so much fun spending time together, laughing, talking, remembering "when", eating ice cream, drinking coffee, and solving the world's problems. Good times!!
Steve reading to the kiddies.

McCall Festival snow sculpture

The sculpture sponsered by the hospital.

When in McCall- you can use the flag
when crossing the street.
We are serious about our flag waving!

Steve getting in on the flag waving.



Mule deer and Elk

Yes, its an outhouse sculpture!


 Ok, I have worked forever to organize the pictures in order, but alas I am defeated, I shall give up this battle.  I'm sure that you can read the caption and figure it all out.