Saturday morning we had the kids with us again, while Jill taught mountaineering up in the Cascade Mountains. We went on a field trip, scouting out a place new to us where we were planning to take our garden club in a few weeks.
Lake Wilderness Park and Arboretum is a public recreation site very popular in summer, but fairly quiet on this cool Saturday morning.
The kids really wanted to spot a frog or two on the shore.
After hanging out by the lake and enjoying the view of Mt Rainier in the distance, we moved on to check out the arboretum.
The Tribal life Trail had good signage pointing out native plants and how they were used by the Native Americans.
Like this camas, the bulb of which was an important food crop.
The Maple Grove was lovely with its new foliage.
Isaac was our navigator, studying the map to determine where we were and where we wanted to go next.
Tom was checking out the plant identification labels.
'President Roosevelt' is an old but still wonderful rhodie with variegated leaves and flowers.
The park is divided by the Cedar River Trail, an old railway bed that is now a lengthy walking, running, biking trail. We left the cultivated arboretum behind and crossed over to the wild side, to hike some forest trails.
This ant hill was interesting and creepy, and by the time we had stopped to check it out, the ants were already crawling up our pant legs. Eeeek!. Move on!
Back across the Cedar River Trail, we followed a trail along the lake shore.
And ended up right where we had started. Because of the white sky it's hard to see Mt Rainier across the lake, but look right over Irene's head in the photo above.
Isaac found a snake and wanted to use the camera. I just had my little canon point and shoot, so no problem. And it has a great zoom feature. the rest of these photos are Isaac's, having some camera fun.
I did not go visit the snake.
That's my phone there in the corner. Tom and I had a great bench seat.
Back at home Saturday afternoon, we had lunch and then the kids helped me decorate the dining room for Irene's birthday celebration scheduled for Sunday at our house.
We dropped the kids off at their house about 4:30 and headed for the light rail station. We were on our way to a Sounders game.
In the city, we sat in Occidental Park and enjoyed some freshly grilled sausage dogs while we waited for the March to the Match.
It was a beautiful evening in the city, as you can see from the sunset we viewed from the third deck concourse at halftime.
To make it an even better evening, the Sounders won 2-1!
As I mentioned, we were selected to host Irene's family birthday party on Sunday, her real birthday. She had already had a friends party at her house on Friday. I also was scheduled to go to the legislative district Democratic Caucus, which, when I committed myself, was scheduled for 10:00 to 12:00. But then it was changed to 1:00 to 3:30. That was not convenient, but I try to honor my commitments, so I did food prep work and table set up in the morning.
While Tom went with Jill and the kids to Irene's soccer game, I went off to play politics. To make a long and aggravating story short, disorganization was rampant, we didn't start until over an hour late, and at 3:20 and they were still waiting for the credentials report before we could elect delegates to the state convention, I walked out the door. I honor my obligations so long as others do what they are supposed to do too.
So next up was the birthday party. The theme - there is always a theme- was the colors Black and White.
Irene ordered pesto pasta with chicken, zucchini, broccoli and peas, and tropical fruit salad. Aunt Jan joined us, of course.
While we were opening gifts, Irene got a call from her Aunt and cousin in Colorado, and both kids talked to their dad in South Carolina.
And there was cake - animal print cake!
Happy Birthday to you, Irene! Eleven already!