Welcome to August.
I want to begin by sharing a photo of my brother-in-law, Leon, and niece, Christina, taken in mid-July. Leon normally picks me up from the airport when I fly into Minneapolis for the quilt retreat. I spend the night at his house, and he drives me to Amanda Jean's house the next morning. It didn't work out for me to stay with him this year, but he and Christina came to my hotel with Chinese take-out. The weather was perfect--no bugs or humidity--so we sat outside and ate our dinner together. It was a lovely evening, and I forgot to post this picture with the quilt retreat post.
Continuing on with the summer, we go back in time to July. As soon as I returned home from Minnesota/Wisconsin, we had the grandkids at our house for five days, 8:30 to about 5:30, or whenever Aaron got off work, because Christa was in Kansas City doing a residency as part of her master's program.
It has continued to be hot here. From 9:30 to 1:30, Ella and Gabe were at a summer program, Young Engineers for Ella and Robotics for Gabe. Charlotte and I went to Starbucks a couple of times. We always put the order in her name just so we can see how the barista decides to spell it. We have quite a collection of variations.
Traditionally this has been the week for Wiens Art Camp, but since Ella and Gabe were gone a large part of the day, we just did a few projects as they felt like it.
Charlotte experimented with resin and made some really cute thumb tacks that look like popsicles.
She also practiced her skill as a crepe maker.
Gabe and Ella worked with clay--both polymer and the softer Model Magic.
We ended the week with dollar Slushies from 7-11.
On Saturday morning, Mark and I left for a road trip to Oregon. Our first stop was in Salem, to deliver the Tattoo quilt (which will get its own separate post) to our niece, Rose. She works at a great coffee shop called the Governor's Cup (very near the capitol building).
We spent some time catching up. And she got me hooked on a new drink to me, an iced lavender oatmilk latte. Yum.
The next day, we had a walking tour of Willamette University. Rose graduated from Willamette last year and her partner, CJ, currently attends.
Lunch at Bo and Vine was great.
Our time together was short but so good.
The next morning we left for Portland, where we stayed with like-a-granddaughter, Stacie. So I'll just admit right here that I fell in love with her house, her neighborhood, and of course I have always loved Portland, so I just didn't want to leave. She lives in what was her grandparents' house. Her grandfather now lives with her parents, and she is redoing the house bit by bit. That girl is a DIY ninja.
We stayed in this room.
On the agenda first of all was a project that she and Mark worked on together--they have worked on projects jointly before and he loves working with her.
Her idea was to build a loft in a spare bedroom closet, in anticipation of Aaron, Christa and the kids visiting the following week.
It took a couple of trips to Home Depot, but they made good progress.
We had pizza for dinner on 23rd Avenue, a popular hangout spot in Portland. And then walked down the street to Salt and Straw for ice cream.
On the way home we stopped at Pittock Mansion for a gorgeous view of the city.
On Wednesday, Stacie was working so we had the day to ourselves. We took the light rail downtown to find Caleb's memorial brick. (Caleb was our first grandchild, born in Portland, who passed away after three days.)
We had a great lunch at Jake's Famous Crawfish.
We went to Skyline Burgers and then watched the Olympics in the patio, obviously in style.
We hated saying goodbye.
And a little side note: Aaron, Christa and the kids are all at Stacie's this week, which was the reason to push to get the loft completed. Stacie finished it all after we left. Isn't it amazing?!
I'm pretty sure it's a big hit...
For our last night, we stayed at the Railroad Park Resort in Dunsmuir, California, home to 23 cabooses and railroad cars. When Mark made the reservation a few weeks back, he scored the very last available car, Caboose 26.
It was lovely inside, all knotty pine.
The next morning, the view from the bed was so pretty.
We arrived home Friday afternoon.
On Saturday, we kept the grandkids overnight. We drove to Oakhurst, a small mountain town about 45 minutes away, for an outdoor melodrama performance. The evening was beautiful--a welcome change from the heat of the valley.
This week, as I mentioned, they are all up in Oregon, so it's pretty quiet around here. As I often do after things have been so busy and I need to introvert, I spend time organizing.
My dining room is filled with things headed for the thrift store. (Bad lighting but I don't have the energy for a better picture.)
But does my sewing room ever look awesome.
Will it stay that way? Highly unlikely. I'll keep you posted.
I'm glad to be home. Hope your weekend is a good one.