July 2019 Part II

Click here or on the photo above for pictures from July 2019

We went camping again, this time at Larrabee State Park. It’s a nice place, but there’s a train track that runs really close to it with both commuter and industrial trains that go through up to sixteen times a day, and it can interrupt your sleep a bit.

This time we camped alone. After our last camping trip, I challenged KrisDi to go all in on one tool for cooking on the camp fire, so she planned our meals to be made with the pie irons. Kids of course got grilled ham and cheese (and so did we), but she also made calzones (using Pillsbury dough) and philly cheese steaks (interestingly, cooking the meat and vegetables in the pie iron before putting it inside dough).

We found evidence of a previous visitor in our site. I bought a single propane burner to use for coffee this time, and it worked just fine. Chilkat and I had reading club, but she wanted to stay inside the tent and I wanted to sit in the zero gravity chair, so we compromised. We saw more wildlife than usual (a bird, a seal, a different bird, a rabbit, another bird, a chipmunk, another different bird, a bird, and a bird).

There was a little beach a short hike from our campground, which faced west toward the ocean. I thought it might make a nice place to see the sunset, so we took the kids and the camera and a strange Texan 11 year old named Connor to go see it. It was beautiful, and I took too many similar but still slightly different pictures making it difficult for me to pick one favorite.

Connor was one of two boys Chilkat and Chilkoot made friends with. Watching this reminded me of my experiences out camping, making sudden friends for life at various campsites, and never seeing them again, not a single one of whom can I remember at this point in my life.

Anyway, their group arrived on our second day. They walked into our camp site, and said, “Hey! There’s kids here. Do you want to play with us?” I envy the charmingly straightforward social norms of children. Connor’s older brother’s name is already lost to memory, so I’ll call him AJ. AJ was 13. Both of them were friendly and outgoing.

They a “murder mystery” game that grew increasingly complex as more arbitrary rules and roles were added, until no one could follow the game at all. AJ came and sat by the fire with KrisDi and I for half an hour or so, telling us much more about himself than we really cared to know. He even cooked and ate his dinner at our fire. I’m not sure, we may have fed him something we made, too.

I’m moderately convinced that Chilkat had her first crush on AJ. She really wanted to be on AJ’s team all the time in the murder mystery game, and got awfully bashful when I asked her why.

We took Chilkat straight from camping at Larrabee to girl scout camp — a four day day camp where they did lots of activities. We don’t have any pictures of it, because we weren’t there, just Chilkat. She remembers finger knitting, playing with friends, made a play, cooking something, taking down the flag, making new friends. She enjoyed it and she want to do it again.

Our next major event was B False Alarm‘s birthday party, which was at a trampoline house in Federal Way. Weezy and crew came up for it (which was more crazy than usual, since they only stayed the one night and went straight home in the morning). I didn’t jump on any trampolines, I just took pictures.

After the party, the Oregonians stayed with us for the night. We drank beer and played games.

The next morning, we headed up to Bellingham to visit Mom, and Weezy’s family headed down to Medford. Chilkat demonstrated her newfound finger knitting skills. I went out to three breweries to try to find beer to take back to the house, while everyone else stayed at Mom’s. Mom made pancakes for dinner, if I remember correctly.

KrisDi went blueberry picking with the kids and Les and D.

Posted by snaotheus

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