´¯`•. August 14, 2016

Tons of Topics!

G’morning!  It’s been a week.  I’m beginning to think that I’m going to have to open a post on Monday, and add to it as we work our way to Sunday… otherwise, I’m going to miss so much.  It’s not a bad idea, actually.  I’d say it’s an age thing, but really I’ve always just been a little absentminded.  It’s okay – I’ll claim it.  ((grins!))

Thunderstorms!  Half of the week has been thunderstorms, which we’ve really needed around here.  It’s beautiful and lush and green, again- what we call ‘Shego World’.  You’d have to Google ‘Shego’… but she’s kind of my favorite super (anti) hero.  If she could move things with her mind, she’d be perfect.  Anyhow, we love the rain.

Hike of the Week.  This week, our hike was to West Olive beach.  It’s been in the 90s, and that’s just so hot… so I’ve been choosing Ottawa county hikes that end up at Lake Michigan.  We had to buy an annual pass to go to these places ($25/yr), but it’s $7 for a day pass, so might as well get the annual.  Four trips, and we’re saving money, you know?  I’ll write more about this, later (with pictures), in it’s own post.  But there are really special things about this particular place!

Into the Incubator.  I know it’s late in the season, but we’ve got eggs incubating.  *FINALLY!*  Thing is, we only have one rooster, and he’s pretty old.  I’m worried about winter putting the hurt to him.  So I’ve really wanted to breed him, for a while.  It just hasn’t happened, for one reason or another, until now.  But at present, there are EIGHT eggs in the warmer, so that’s good!  I figure I can just keep the chicks under a heat lamp a lot longer, if it’s a cold fall… but the way things have been, it probably won’t be a problem.

Planning a Trip!  My cousin (Steve) is turning 40 this year, and apparently there’s going to be a party for him… but it’s WAY up in Buckley.  Three hours north of here!  Anyhow, he invited us via Brian, who kind of shrugged off the thing, it being so far away.  But then Steve asked again, and Brian could tell he really wanted us to go… so apparently we need to go.  Brian thought just drive up, go to the party, and drive home (hitting our house about 1am)… but I suggested that we take our new camper and try a road trip.  We’ve never gone more than an hour away, camping, before.

Eyeing up Options…  Okay, so staying in a camper isn’t ‘roughing it’.  But in looking for a campground to stay at, we saw that Buckley is so small, there just aren’t options.  The closest is Interlochen (which is trendy and packed and not our style), or Mitchell State Park down in Cadillac – which is 40 minutes from the party.  We’ve camped there before (wait!  We camped in the Hi-Lo 15 years ago in Cadillac!!  That’s the furthest we’ve gone.  I just forgot about that!)… and that’s just not where we want to be.  There’s also two private campgrounds – a KOA that’s richy-rich, and a place called ‘Northern Exposure’ that’s also very pricey.  Then (me being me), I thought, “Do we need electrical hook-up?”  After all, there’s a battery and propane tanks on the camper.

Roughing It.   So I found a State Forestry place very close to the party, and it’s half the price of the cheapest electrical option.  Plus there are only 17 lots, there – very quiet.  Mostly it’s the juction where one major trail system meets another, so there’s a huge parking lot where people park and really rough it… by backpacking a 23-mile loop.  (It sounds like fun, actually… but my family would never go for it.)  There are campsites all along the big loop, so people don’t really camp at the trail-head place – which makes it a nice place for us!  There’s also apparently a river right there, and a beautiful suspension bridge… but it’s little known/used, because it’s ‘rustic’.  I’m getting excited about this whole thing!!

Rascally Racoon!!!  We’ve been trapping raccoons almost constantly in critter corner, this year.  We’re up to something like fifteen, now.  It’s been crazy – Brian’s grandpa has gotten over thirty!  It was a bumper crop of coons, apparently.  His grandpa blasts them, but we relocate them to a protected park.  Anyhow, as Brian was transporting one on Monday, the cage came open.  The thing climbed up on the ledge around the box of his truck and was doing laps, while Brian was doing 60mph!!  The guy driving behind Brian had to be busting up!  Then it burrowed under the mat and wouldn’t come out.  We’re not sure where/when he finally took off.  But sheesh!!!

BIG Expenses.  We have to register the camper.  We still haven’t bought tires for the bike trailer we built.  Brian’s truck still needs to go in to have a tune-up.  Luckily, he never deposited the quarterly bonus $$, so we can use that to do these things.  But it’s going to be a busy week, next week, getting stuff taken care of!

Lauren & Poppies.  I’ve been spending a lot of time reading thru other people’s blogs, this week.  I started with ‘My Little Poppies’, and I read three years of her writings (back to when she was repeating posts [?!?], and her children were so little that the stuff isn’t pertinent at all).  Then I found Lauren’s blog.  I like homeschooling full-time travelers/adventurers, and that’s what Lauren is.  She’s been writing as long as I have, so it’s a DAUNTING thing, reading all of her stuff.  I started at the beginning, in 1997 (!!!), and I’m up to 2010.  But I’ve a long way to go.  She’s just so kindred, though…!

Clean ‘n’ Purge.  This week I went a little crazy, organizationally.  The boys’ room was driving me CR-azy… so we found ourselves at 10:30pm in there, adding shelving, rearranging everything (which involved moving a giant copy-machine to Lydia’s room, which extended the rearranging to HER room, and then to the parlor…!!).  Things look far, far better in here, but it was a temporary fix.  We have to try to figure out a way to get rid of some stuff.  It comes in from who-knows-where, and compiles.  I do shovel it out the door as I can, but man… it really does overwhelm, sometimes!!

Non-fiction.  I was reading (on My Poppies’ site) how getting children interested in reading non-fiction was a fun, interesting, and exciting new world.  So when we went to the library this week, we decided to browse the non-fiction sections.  Isaac found books on ‘insect origami’ and ‘woodworking fun with Dad’, and the younger boys found books on animals and biomes.  I got a book on watercolor, and several on upper Michigan (I need to know more about the western tip).  Lydia got books on papercrafts, drawing and music.  Oh, and we found decade-books of sheet music for the most popular songs of the decades.  I got out the 1990’s book, and am playing Cher’s “Believe” and Sting and all sorts of crazy stuff!  They truly fell in love with the non-fiction section.  I’m so glad!

Anyhow… I really ought to go.  The tomatoes fell over in the storms.  I’m still working on cleaning the old camper – it’s rather a glorious mess, truth be told!  Lots to do, so little time…!

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