Since we go to visit family in Oregon several times a year, we often do the same activities every time we go. This time, I really wanted to do some things that we had never done before. One day, we spent the day at Elk Lake where we brought a picnic lunch and rented paddle boards for the entire afternoon. This was one of our favorite activities that we did ALL summer! Everyone loved taking a turn exploring the lake on a paddle board. Most of these pictures were taken close to the shore in shallow water but everyone went far out into the lake. In fact, Benjamin went really far and then accidentally dropped his paddle. Andrew and Dad had to go rescue him but he never freaked out.
Andrew did several headstands on the paddle boards. Quite an accomplishment!!
Another fun thing that we had never done before, was to go rock climbing with Uncle Mark. Andrew tried it first and was very successful.
Benjamin tried it second. He made it all the way to the top with just a little help from Uncle Mark.
Spencer tried it next. He was awesome!!
Nathan tried after all the boys. He did a great job, too!!
Even Levi wanted to try!
Andrew and Nonnie talking about how life is a lot like rock climbing...after you accomplish "hard things", you're exhausted, but you feel good!!
The last fun adventure that we had never done with the kids was to go to the Lava River Cave.
We went as far as we could in the cave. At this point we are crouching or crawling on the ground.
At the end of our week, Andrew had a soccer tournament in Portland. We left all the other kids with Nonnie. Nonnie took the boys to the High Desert Museum with friends and to a couple of parks. Thank you SO much Nonnie!!
After our first game, the team met at Lake Oswego to swim.
Andrew played well in the tournament, but we forgot to get a picture of him playing. The highlight of his time in Portland was not on the soccer field, but at the Nike Employee Store. Several of Andrew's teammates had been able to go to the Nike Employee store because they have family or friends who could get them a guest pass. Andrew kept asking me if we could take him to the store. I tried several times to explain to him that we would need a guest pass to get into the store and we didn't know anyone who works at Nike. He was so persistent, that I started to think who I might know in Portland. I could think of only ONE friend from high school that lived in the Portland area, so I contacted her through Facebook. I was pleasantly surprised that she quickly answered my message saying that she would love to meet us the next day at the Nike Employee store because her husband is an employee. Andrew jumped up and down and could hardly sleep that night thinking of his good fortune!! We met Stefanie, her husband and their darling children in the parking lot. The line just to get into the store was five car rows back in the parking lot, but it was SO worth it to get to visit and catch up with Stefanie and to meet her husband and children. What a treat!! I couldn't believe how generous and kind they were to share with us one of their precious guest passes!! Andrew had been wanting a pair of flyknit shoes and was beyond thrilled to get a pair for half the price! (He got the red pair.) We spent a few hours in the store and were able to find something to bring back to all of the other kids. It really was a wonderful experience that we will treasure forever! Thank you Stefanie and Ray!!
1 year ago