We have been crazy busy since May! Before summer even started, before school was even out, we took advantage of a sunny Monday (we took Mondays off all year and worked on a 4 day school week. It helped big time with my sanity since I tend to work on the weekends) and drove up to Skokomish Park on Lake Cushman to scope out a potential camping area for the summer. It was stunningly beautiful and the lake was so cold! But the kids swam, of course.
See how cold?
Easton got buried in the volleyball pit. (Dr. Dirt. Ever heard of "earthing"? I think Easton's body knows how to do it naturally) :)
After this day trip, we reserved 2 RV sites (one for Rachel's RV and one for my Dad's) and 1 tent site (for everyone else) for the end of the time Rachel was supposed to be with us visiting for the summer.
And then we just counted down the days until we moved, and had our summertime guests!
Rachel and the kiddos arrived with their RV on the last day of June (I think), just 2 weeks after we moved all of our possessions from the little house in the woods in Olympia, to a much bigger house in Shelton. Totally hadn't even finished unpacking before they arrived!
This is the only picture I took of the move, but it was the very last time I pulled out of that driveway.
I can barely remember the order of events of the next 3 weeks, but looking back through the pics I realized we really did a lot of fun things.
Right away we had about 3 parties in a row. 3rd of July we had a get together and watched fireworks out at my Mom's house at Alderbrook. And best part was getting to meet my cousins new baby, Ava.
If you know my cousin, Travis, at all, you know what a big deal this picture is. And that if he knew I posted it here, he may come and try and kill me. In fact, I'm sure I would have never been able to snap it if he hadn't been holding a baby. But I think he will probably never see it. :) Right, Nancy?? Well I think this picture is the cutest!! red+red=red :)
And this.... normal 4th of July attire if you ask me.
There are NO other pictures (or possibly videos) that will EVER be posted publically
Whew. Moving on.
We acquired a pool. A little bigger than the tiny baby pool the kids dipped in last year. It was almost free and required just a few patches here and there from some winter happenings, but it's holding water. And bestly, it's keeping kids entertained and cool. Both Easton and Annabel have gone from terrified to little fishies in just a matter of weeks.
Summer's here are pretty unbeatable and we have had fantastic weather this summer. It's bordered on almost too hot, but when you've lived in Phoenix, you really can't say that about Western Washington. Ever.
So maybe the next day or maybe a couple days later, who knows, we took the kids to Twanoh State Park for an evening swim at high tide. Evening high tides are the best because the water comes in over hot rocks and warms up significantly. It helped that it was virtually windless. We took Rachel's kayaks and had another nearly perfect summer day.
Easton (4) and Willow (5) Best Buddies
On our way to the woods!
And THEN.....Kansas people can't come all this way and not go to the beach, so off to the beach we went. Us Wagners take a BUNCH of crap with us to the beach. Body boards, wood for a fire, chairs, kites, swim suits AND warm clothes, buckets and shovels, the dog, etc. So we tend to go to the beach where we can drive the car right onto the beach. Rather than park a mile away and have to trudge all the gear across deep sand. We got there and set up everything (including our clothes line) and realized it looked like our cars threw up and we were staying for a week!
For the last 5 days Rachel got to be with us, we went camping up at Skokomish Park. She has a big RV which was basically like our portable pantry and kitchen. We cooked and ate at her spot and then hung out and had the campfires at our little tent city just a few spots down. It was awesome. My dad camped, my mom camped, Joanna and Jon camped. Even Uncle Jordan camped for part of the time. The weather was decent, but definitely could have been better. But because we were there long enough we had weather for everything. There was swimming, kayaking, LOTS of fishing, riding bikes, watching movies (in Rachel's trailer). So on our last night all the other tent campers decided to go home. Joanna and Jon had to work and my mom did too. So tent city that night was a little more quiet, but nice. At 4:30am it started to downpour. I got up and gathered a few things and got back in the tent hoping it was just a fast moving cloud and it would be sunny when I had to get up. Rand left for work around 7:00am and I got up at 8:00 ish. And it was still down-pouring. I am talking mud on EVERYTHING. Inside the tent, warm and cozy. Outside the tent, disaster zone. I look out the tent door and see my dad and sister tromping down the river, er, I mean road, with their rubber boots and rain hats on. Hilarious. I have no pictures because it was nuts trying to pack everything up in the those conditions, but I managed! Rachel took all my kids up to her trailer for food and movies while we gathered everything in the muck. Again, it took me days to recover. Hosing down chairs and tents and tarps and hanging them to dry in the yard and then repacking everything.
It was awesome. I would totally do it again. Things are so much easier without a baby in the house! :)
From the campground Rachel hooked up and pulled her trailer down to her in-laws in Kelso where they met up with Royal and stayed for a couple weeks there. Now they are heading back to Kansas and another summer has flown by. I couldn't move on with summer and a birthday and the rest without getting the post done and documenting one of the things we look forward to most every year. These summers with Rachel and the kids are just the absolute best. If only we didn't have to say goodbye. :(