Friday, August 29, 2014

Grandma Camp

We are very fortunate to have our grandchildren living near us, and they are equally fortunate to have us near, even though there may be times that they don't think so.

This week Jill went back to work, attending meetings and training sessions, in preparation for the new school year to start next Wednesday.  We picked up the kids each morning and and had the pleasure of their company each day.

They had recently spent several weekends with us, and decided that the old toys we had here were not sufficient any more, so on Monday they brought some of their own and set them up in the bedrooms.  

As long as I allowed them some screen time each day they were happy and we spent Monday at home.

Tuesday we went on a field trip to Olympia, the state capitol.  "Why do we have to go there?  How long will it take?".  Yes, we are now in the pre-teen years, at least with 11 year old Isaac.  Irene, at 9, is rushing it, but don't tell her that.  Anyway, I "made" them go.  Irene really liked the capitol building and Isaac asked good questions. 
 World War II Memorial ↑

 The Great Seal of the State of Washington ↑

 Tour Director Tom pointing out important stuff ↑

 Learning about the legislature and roles of government ↑

 Our state namesake has a shiny nose because for some reason it is traditional to touch it when visiting.

 Irene took a few photos too.↓
 The kids found acorns on the ground under that big tree in the background and were as intrigued with them as anything else.
 We moved on to the Temple of Justice
 and the kids played with their acorn "tops" in the lobby of the state supreme court.

 We had lunch at a Subway in Olympia and then drove over to Tumwater Falls on the Deschutes River, site of the first American settlement on Puget Sound, where there was water power to run mills. 
 The kids were ready to mutiny "Not more walking!", so we let everyone play in the park for a while.

 The large building on the right is the Olympia Brewery, now out of business and for sale.
 The Upper Falls and the grating covering the rushing water of the fish ladders.

 The lower falls - there were middle falls too.
 These rubber duckies were apparently left over from a run called the Duck Dash.

 Irene found another tree to climb.  She analyzes trees based on how good they would be for tree houses.  
 Isaac was now, as usual, doing everything possible to avoid my camera. 
It was a very warm day and when we returned home, we all sought our quiet time, which for all of us involved some kind of screen.

Wednesday morning we loaded up the kids bikes and went to Fort Dent to walk and ride along the Green River trail.  Isaac declared he was tired and wasn't having any of it, and refused to budge, so we left him sitting on the curb with his bike and the three of us set off.  After about a mile and a half we turned around, and he came riding down the trail to join us.  

 When we got back to the parking lot the Sounders were coming out of the training facility and heading to the practice field.  
 Tom and I were wondering a few weeks ago whatever had happened to the old Hat and Boots that were a relic of an old 1950's gas station along Route 99.  Then we found an article in a AAA magazine, so we went to find them.

 "No more photos!" ↓

We had a snack and then the kids played.

 Back home there was more screen time, and in the afternoon the kids played "rugby" in the shade on the lawn and we played a game of Skipbo on the patio.

Thursday morning the kids were happy to hear we wouldn't be going anywhere, but I went out walking and Tom dropped the kids off with their bikes after picking them up, so they rode around the neighborhood park while I walked. Then they spent the rest of the morning here. 
In the afternoon we went to Jill's school to help set up her classroom and then we all went out for ice cream. 
This morning Jill went to school to spend a few hours doing some lesson planning and we picked the kids up and took them to Friday morning breakfast with us.  
Isaac loved his bacon ↓
 Jan and Lela were the only two other regulars with us this morning.

We took them home after breakfast and Jill returned home shortly thereafter.  When Tom took the bikes back over a bit ago Jill reported that she had suggested they go check out a new park. She was met with "Why do we have to go there?  We've been going places all week!"  So I guess they went to the mall.

Grandma Camp is done.  Of course we will see them tomorrow when they go to the Sounders match with us, and Sunday when we are all at the family picnic on Whidbey Island.  But I won't be in charge. 


  1. I had to laugh at this post, Linda. I know those kids almost as well as any I've been around in person, and I'm constantly amazed at how quickly they are growing and changing. And I smiled when I saw Tom with his nose once again in his smartphone, and smiled again at the last picture where he was actually looking at the camera! :-)

  2. I enjoyed this post! Isaac and Irene are so lucky to have such great grandparents but then Isaac and Irene are really special. Both of them are beautiful children.

  3. What a great way to spend time, Grandpa and Grandma, even if you did have to force them to go. I'm sure they won't soon forget the trip.

  4. Ha, my son would understand how your GKs felt about all that going places. Last summer when he visited we went to the Olympic Peninsula, where nothing is near anything else, and it involved a lot of driving and then getting out of the car and walking. He said next time he comes he wants to stay home. And he's 32.

  5. I'd say that was a first class Grandma Camp. The picture of the Capital reminds me when i took classes on a field trip to the capital. I'm sure you've done the same thing. They all tend to be ornate and beautiful buildings.

  6. It wore me out just reading about Grandma Camp. How do you maintain your energy level?

  7. Right now my summer visits with the grands are grand...but they will grow and I know it will be different and not as cool.

  8. Seven year old is still thrilled with visits to grandma's house, but 13 year old is on to other interests. This week end she asked if she could bring a friend, but was polite enough not to point out that it would be the only way of preventing a numbing boredom. They just plain grow up too darn fast!

  9. What fun Grandma Camp! Where can I sign up? Isaac and Irene will treasure these pictures of their times with you when they're older! I always thought that Washington's nose was shiny because of the proximity of the capitol to the brewery. Isaac illustrates how presidents are picked! Great pictures all and thanks for showing what happened to the boots and hat, I always wondered.

  10. What's with the long, wavy hair, Isaac? Give me some! Lol.

    Those kids are better than me. I can't walk that much.

  11. Boy, Grandma camp is a tough one but in years to come, those kids will remember those times sharper and way more fondly than those mall times which will just be a blur.
    Seeing the Sounders up close and personal like that would have made my day. Good job.

  12. What no dusting or cleaning or learning how to bake or cook? One day should have been kids day filled with activities that they chose from a list! That Capital Building is beautiful! :)

  13. vous m'avez inspiré à ajouter mon agitation de tous les jours
    obat prostat tanpa operasi

  14. My grandchildren went home three weeks ago and I do miss having them around. Although they just turned 7 and 9, they have the same attitude as yours. They love their technology and always complain about going on field trips, but seem to enjoy them once we get there.

  15. I'll say it again, you guys are the best grandparents. I love how you're giving your grandkids so many varied experiences and truly enhancing their life experiences. They are very, very lucky!


I would love to read your comments. Since I link most posts to Facebook, you may comment there if you do not have an account. I have eliminated Anonymous comments due to spammers.