Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Vacation and Reentry

I feel like I have spent a lot of the summer going away and coming back again. This time it was harder than usual to get back into my routines, because I spent a whole week mostly relaxing. No cooking, no cleaning, only one load of laundry (!!!) and lots of sitting in the sun, chatting and knitting. I even got a few hours each day to myself to think, read, write, and enjoy nature. You see, the kids and I were fortunate to go with hubby's extended family for a reunion at a most unique place. Holden Village is an old mining community that was acquired in the 60s by the Lutheran Church and turned into a retreat center. It's very remote, and takes most of a day to travel to and from.

First you take a boat up the long Lake Chelan. No roads go into the area.

Then, you get on a bus for the ride 11 miles up into the mountains to the Village

There is no cell phone service, no land phone line, no internet (except for that required by the Village for registration and business purposes.) They prepare all the food, guests sleep in the lodges that were the old dormitories for the miners. There is programming you can attend, or not. There is a kids' program each weekday morning, built-in babysitting. And it was sunny all except for one day! The kids played hard all day, I went for a long hike without them (thanks Grandma for watching them), and spent a lot of time sitting around.

Deer roam through the village daily. They are used to people.

Railroad Creek runs next to the Village. You can just see the mine ruins on the hillside in the distance.

I took a hike to Hart Lake. Of course, it was the only day of the week that it rained. But the waterfalls and flowers were spectacular.

The color of Hart Lake is deep teal green. Lovely!

The views from the vicinity of the village are breathtaking. You just have to ignore the tailings piles.

Indian Paintbrush were in full bloom - red, yellow, orange, pink.

Lovely penstemon all over - big and small varieties.

Gabriel enjoyed a new journal he bought with his own money. He spent a lot of time writing and drawing.

I found it tough for a few days to get back into all the work that comes with being home and raising children. I wanted to rest from all that resting (the travel day home was tiring). But now I think I'm back in the swing of things, cooking and cleaning, catching up on laundry, decluttering. I need to plan the kids' school for the next semester, which starts after Labor Day here. I'll have two officially in school now, so I need to figure out how to fit Annika into our day. I have a sneaking suspicion it will involve being more structured, but we'll see. Hopefully I can figure out how to work Kindergarten and Fourth Grade together as much as possible.

It's finally sunny here in Puget Sound, and I am enjoying the warmth. I've picked several pints of raspberries to put into the freezer for the winter.

That's about all I have in the garden this year, except for some chives and rhubarb. Maybe next year I'll get my raised beds built and planted and have more crops, but you know, summers are so busy it seems tough to add gardening into the mix. Oh well, I enjoy what I did do, and the raspberries are fabulous!

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