Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Ya Know How You are Always Hearing that People in North Idaho are Crazy Rednecks?...

Ok, so that everyone truly knows what rednecks we are up here in North Idaho, I will share some photos of our outhouse. When we bought our home 10 years ago, we found out that there was a RV septic cleanout in our backyard. So Mark - his idea; he is the N. Idaho native, after all - thought it would be really cool to have an outhouse in our backyard. An outhouse with a flushing toilet.
But I do have to fess up - shortly after we built it, we received a copy of an autobiography that my uncle wrote. In it there is an entire chapter 'devoted' to different kinds of outhouses... The missionaries especially enjoy having their picture taken by it for some reason which I have yet to understand. Must be a guy thing ... I think it's pretty famous throughout the mission . . .
...right up there with the story about the missionary that Mark talked in to preg testing a steer. . . but that's a whole 'nuther story. :)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Mark's Workin' Out

Since this spring, Mark has made it a priority to get some exercise. It all started when he began walking while Rachel was in seminary. Then after seminary just about every day, even in the snow and rain, they walked together for 30-60 minutes to get Rachel ready for the stake Pioneer Trek that she participated in this June. After that he started riding his bike. He is now up to 25-27 miles several days a week, and has lost 20-25 pounds. He looks Great!

Here he is yesterday morning with Missy and Jeff.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Noelle's 11th Birthday

Yesterday we had an early birthday party for Noelle. We decided to celebrate early since her birthday is on Aug 30, and it gets crazy right about then, trying to get ready to go back to school. Our wonderful neighbor Dana & several of Noelle's friends & their families came over to celebrate.
It's hard to believe she's going to be in the sixth grade already!
Blowing out the candles.... this cake was made out of 54 ice cream bars, whipped cream, chocolate syrup, and tripleberry fruit topping. Now that's an ice cream cake!Tearing into her gifts...
She loves to read the cards...
Evalie loves birthday parties - everyone's birthday party..."Is this one mine??"
Group shot... (why is Tanner always shirtless??) Tot shots... Tommy
Hannah & Dillon

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Last-Minute Camping Trip

Late in the day last Tuesday, Mark and I looked at the weather forecast and saw temps in the 100's starting Thursday through the weekend (That's hot for us when we are used to 80-85 degrees in August). So by early afternoon Thursday we were packed up and headed up north, 1/4 mile from the Canadian border, to go camping.

We were headed for Copper Creek campground, on the Moyie river. It was a favorite spot for Mark to go when he was a kid. I even let him talk me in to going there on our honeymoon... Friday morning I got up early and went for a jog. Of course I got pretty stinky, going up and down and around the winding trails. When I got back, the family was out of bed and they started to complain about how bad I smelled. I told them that my plan was to run down to the river and wash up. Everyone said that wouldn't be enough. So we all jumped in the 'burb and went to Sinclaire Lake, which is a 5 minute drive away.
So we all took an early morning swim. Well, it was 8 am by then. I just feel sorry for the people who were trying to fish off the dock there.
Me & the kids and Noelle's best friend, Madi.
Later that morning we decided it was time to go huckleberry picking. If you have never seen or tasted a huckleberry, they are exactly like a blueberry, except smaller, tarter, and more flavorful. Along the way, we saw some good firewood logs laying on the ground - perfect for cooking s'mores - and we decided to throw them into the suburban. So much for my clean vehicle!

Huckleberries only grow wild, and they are usually found up in the mountains. So we are literally climbing up the side of the mountain as we pick. We ended up with about 2 gallons.
View from the huckleberry patch
We had also invited some friends of ours to come up with us. We all had dinner that night and played games till late. I'm surprised the other people in the campground didn't have us thrown out. Saturday morning we had huckleberry pancakes and went for a hike up to Copper Creek Falls. The kids also had a great time fishing.
Copper Creek Falls

Our group at the waterfallIsaac's Fish
Noelle's Fish
Back at the lake to cool off
Dad and the girls
Muddy Buddies - Caleb, Tommy, & Tanner
Tanner, Isaac, Madi, and Noelle Sinclaire Lake

So our trip was a great success. We all had a lot of fun, and we are talking about going back the first week of August every year. We may even go again this summer! We'll keep you "posted" :)

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Our Missionary

Chad recently took part in his first baptism. It was a really great spiritual experience for him, as you can imagine. This lady's name is Luz. She was very open and accepting of the truths of the Gospel from the first lesson on. She has a family that she hopes will also join the Church. A couple from the mission office and Chad's ward emailed me this wonderful letter. It is a great compliment to how well he is doing there, serving the Lord.
"Dear Brother and Sister Carey,
My husband and I have been called to serve a mission in the Chile Rancagua Mission. We will be serving as the office couple. We have also been assigned to attend church in the Manzanal Ward with your son, Elder Carey. This afternoon he was one "radiant" young missionary as he performed his first baptism here in Chile. He did a great job. He looked pretty handsome all dressed in white. His cheeks were rosy and his smile beaming as he stepped down into the baptismal font. You should be proud of him. He's working hard and making great progress in espaƱol.
Love, Hermana Mason"

Another family that he and Elder Jenson taught
Local cuisine Chad's companion, Elder Jenson. You can't quite see the name tag, but he is wearing Chad's. Looks like they really like to give each other a bad time! They got to go to the zoo one P-day.Chad found his soulmate...
That kid has always been accident prone...
Lazy LionHis poor, nasty feet, destroyed by the expensive shoes he bought

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Gardening 2008

We have been trying to raise a garden for quite a few years, and didn't have a whole lot of success until last year. I thought since I spend a couple hours almost every day working in it, that I would share some pictures.
We were a little late getting started - this picture was taken the 13th of April, when almost all the snow had melted. Then we had a little bit more snow on April 30 and May 1. It was a very very looong and depressing winter.

There are my beans on the far left- we bought the pole variety, but after getting all the post and string supports up, discovered they were actually bush beans. In front of the thornless blackberries, we also have brand-new asparagus plants which are the fern looking bushes that you can barely see. We won't harvest anything off them until next spring or summer. They are one of the few periennial vegtables that you can grow.

My tomato, brocolli, and pumpkin plants. Nothing to eat yet, just a lot of green 'fruit', leaves, and vines so far.

No, wait. We now have little red cherry tomatoes to eat. Yummy! I can't wait until the bigger ones are ripe, so I can have fresh tomato-and-onion sandwiches like my dad probably still eats. When I was a kid, I always thought he was crazy, the way he'd go out with his bread and pocket knife and make a fresh sandwich right out in the garden...but now I know exactly what he loves so much about it. Good memories :)

Raspberries, corn, and fruit trees. So far we have harvested a lot of strawberries, beans, peas, raspberries. We are looking forward to eating (and freezing) the rest of itWe bought a couple turkeys to raise for Thanksgiving. This one is Stick. Good thing we had bought two, since Drum died. One minute he was running around, and the next minute he just keeled over :( Mark had been told just the day before that they tend to do that. We are hoping that Stick will grow quickly!We also thought it would be a good idea to raise chickens, too. We have some layers- we get 6-8 eggs a day, which is enough for us and a few for Isaac to sell for his mission fund. He does a great job taking care of them!