I think summer is in full swing here. We spend our mornings at swimming lessons and afternoons in Tennis lessons. This is the first summer in I don’t know how long that we are not doing school. We have always done year round and taken our breaks when Eric has his school breaks. But now, this summer, I was feeling the need to close up our books and not look at them again until next fall. Well almost. We will still do math flash cards and reading through out the summer. Just so we don’t forget everything. But with the sun shining, not a one of us feels like being in doors. Our list of projects on the property is pretty long. Alot of it had to be post poned until the rains stopped. We have trees to plant, wood to haul, and split, fields to mow, and a small garden to plant. Mix that with all the activities and trips we have planned and I think summer will be over in the blink of an eye. So all the more reason to work and play real hard and then hunker down again this fall when it starts raining again.
We have been watching the river every day, waiting for it to get low enough to be safe to swim in. Our river water comes from glacier run offs, so the water is dangerously high in the spring to swim in. But by mid to late summer, it is much lower and safer to swim and play. The Chinook Salmon are doing their spring run up stream this week, so tens of thousands are swimming upstream to spawn. We went to the fish ladder to observe the salmon activity and were infauted with all these fish swimming and jumping up the river against the stream. We tried fishing one day, but I think we are a little to much of a novice to have much of a success.
Last weekend was the rodeo down south a ways. This was our first rodeo. Eric stayed home to study for a test he had, It felt like Dental school days all over again. We had missed the sign up for the kids to try thier hand at mutton bistin or calf riding, so we just checked about an hour before the rodeo started and they had one child not show for the mutton bustin and Maryann was convinced she could do it, so we signed her up at the last minuet.
Now I want to say a few things about Maryann. She is 4 going on 22… or 5 in a few months. Depending on who you ask. 😉 She loves anything pretty and pink. If it sparlkes then its even better. Her clothes choice is usually a floor lenght dress up dress, which she can climb trees and ride her bike in amazinglly well. She loves to sing and dance. She always has a smile for you and loves to snuggle up on your lap for a story. She is sensitive. A harsh word can bring her to tears. And goodness knows I should have bought stock in Band Aids when she was born. Any little scratch or bump is deserving of a Princess Band Aid.
I immediately began to question my sanity as they put her on the sheep. I think it was right about then that I heard the Announcer over the loud speaker making a joke about how Mutton Bustin was the only legal form of child abuse in America. And I wanted to grab her off that sheep and run far away very fast. But in that split second, the sheep she was on tore out of the shoot, and she was off! She hung on for dear life. And would not let go….even after she lost her balance and the sheep (still running) drug her though the Arena. Finally, as the sheep neared the flock of other sheep on the far side of the arena, she let go. I was already running towards her, knowing that any second she would be screaming hysterically. But she never shed a tear. She got up, brushed up and announced to me and anybody else who was listening, “I want my belt buckle!” There was an eruption of cheering and clapping as we walked towards the gate. Cowboys were hanging over the fence, giving her high-fives as she strode out of that arena. But there was no belt buckle to claim. One little boy got very lucky, and his sheep decided to just walk around in a nice slow circle. And since the judging is done solely on time on the sheep, not how well you ride, the buckle went to him.
She amazed me. My little girl who lives for sparkle and girly stuff, was covered in dirt and her shirt was tore. And she was no worse for the wear. She is convinced that she WILL win the next rodeo, so I signed her up again. Might have a little Rodeo Queen over here!
***All of the photos with the border are NOT mine. They were taken by another photographer, Laurie Quinn, at the Rodeo who was very gracious in giving them to me. Check out her webiste here. http://pbase.com/oregonlifephotos
Picture that was put in the front page of the Sports section.
(Not my photo)
Josh’s new rabbit from the rodeo.
The Rodeo Clowns