Summer 08 plans!

Summer 08 plans! - Woodard Family The Woodard family has a big summer of camping planned, armed with a new (to us) teardrop trailer and meager but totally sufficient camping supplies! That doesn't mean we don't want to socialize, we change plans at the drop of a hat so let us know if you'd like to get together and share in the fun!! We aren't traveling past the Northwest this year so are finally exploring our own neck of the woods...

Aven Discovers a CrabMay 9-11 Beach House Weekend, Tulalip, WA.
The Woodard clan rented a beautiful beach house on the Puget Sound coast, there were 18 of us there! Dick and Cassie Hare joined us too for a great mother's day weekend. Highlights included the foosball tournament, exploring walks on the beach, and the salmon and mimosa mother's day brunch! Aven found many cool beach treasures and especially enjoyed his first s'more roasting - in the living room fireplace!

May 17-18 Camping at Flowing Lake
Aven, Aniya & Mommy at Flowing LakeAniya's first camping trip! Just 7 miles from us, it was also the first run with our new trailer. We snagged a beautiful spot at the last second friday evening and enjoyed not putting up a tent! It was also the first run with our new dutch oven, inspired by Dick and Cassie! We tried beef stew with sweet potatoes and baby corn (notoriously took forever but was tasty). The few mosquitos that swarmed us when we got there (nice trick) disappeared for the night and rejoined us a little in the morning. The weather was great! We enjoyed the lake on Saturday, especially the dogs, and Aven really enjoyed the playground. We finished up our short trip with a mile hike in the sunshine. It was the perfect start to a summer of camping. Forgot: can opener, corkscrew, paper towels, lantern and flashlights!!!

May 23-26 (memorial day wknd) Camping at Icicle CreekSummer 08 plans! - Woodard Family
We planned a huge holiday weekend (4 days!!) of camping near Leavenworth, and raced over Steven's Pass on Thursday morning to miss traffic and get a good spot. Heather wedged herself between Aven and Aniya's car seats and helped us explore 5 campgrounds to get an amazing spot at the Ida Creek campground (only 6 spots there!), the last one along Icicle River road that wasn't closed. We were right along the river, the view was breathtaking. There were four trees that beavers had downed right on the bank! The wind nearly swept us away (and Heather's tent decided to fly into the river but wasIcicle Creek Camping Downpour caught!) but the sunshine was great on Thursday.

It got so cold that evening that our wine and cheese was hard to enjoy. We tried out our sourdough bread with the dutch oven, and then enjoyed stuffed flank steak in it, then had s'mores...mmm. Heather had a two-dog night in her tent since it was so cold -- dipped to 38! The real turn of events came when the rain started Friday morning- and didn't stop- and got worse and worse. Drenched and freezing, we escaped to Starbucks (I know, against camping rules) in Leavenworth to dry out and warm up.
Aven CroquetThe forecast changed to rain the rest of the weekend, so we ended up calling off the rest of the trip. Cassie, Dick, Susie and Larry were going to meet us up there, but understood. The lake in Heather's tent, the holy tarp Dustin and Heather hung over the table (it was a work of beauty), and Aniya never leaving Katie's coat helped our decision. Of course we had to introduce Aniya to the wood shop before we left town - the best toy store in the world!

We still enjoyed the rest of our holiday weekend by bbq'ing at our house with the Woodards, frisbee golfing, playing croquet, hiking on the centennial trail, and making our apple crisp in the dutch oven on the patio! Forgot: cast iron pan, tarp without holes.

May 30-31 Camping at Wenburg State Park (Lake Goodwin)/Seattle-
Wendberg CampingWe arrived at our reserved spot, then checked out the lake and playground before heading back to our site to start dinner. The lake was beautiful and the beach was sandy not rocky! For dinner we grilled salmon and baby potatoes-mmmmm. No mosquitos! The only downside of the park was that the spots are a little crammed together and not too private, but we picked nearly the best site. After endless glow-stick silliness and some marshmallow roasting we turned in for a restless night. For some reason Niya-pie and Sunny decided we shouldn't sleep much this time. After a quick yummy breakfast in the morning we whisked ourselves away to make the train to be Seattle tourists for the day...Aniya's first trip to Seattle amazingly! And we made it count! From coffee at Zietgeist, to the shrunken heads at the famous Ye Curiousity shop at the waterfront, to an old-school toy shop in Pioneer Square, we had a great time. The drizzle didn't bother us one bit. We even almost went to the brazil vs. canada exhibition soccer match! for camping, we Forgot: chairs, butter, step-stool for trailer.

June 7-8 Tri-Cities trip-
We enjoyed a weekend with Katie's family again! We celebrated (late) Jill's b-day and Papa Jon's 60th!! Highlights included the windy kite-flying with Gramma Cassie, eating Gramma Cassie's gourmet feasts, bbqing at Paul and Nichole's, meeting Papa Jon's and Gramma Susie's new baby dachshund Dieter, and all 6 cousins seeing Kung Fu Panda together! It was yet another short but sweet trip over there (except the 10+ hours driving total). Aniya showed us she is growing to hate that car-seat more every day.

June 14-15 Aven's first SOCCER, Father's Day BBQ-
On Friday night we were planning on camping along Lake McMurray near Granite Falls, but after driving around for 2.5 hours looking for it, we decided to scrap it and go home. It was late and we were getting up early Saturday morning anyway for soccer, so it wasn't worth it this time. We may try that area again next weekend, if we can get better directions. Forgot: good directions.

Aven played his first organized soccer in Mukilteo with Li'l Kickers. His group was the 2.5 to 3.5 year olds, and he had a blast learning new games and practicing soccer skills. He was by far the cutest, fastest, most talented one of course. We hope to let him play every week, and he may be ready for the 3-4 year old group already.

We hosted Father's Day BBQ on Sunday for Dustin's family, 14 people showed! It was a beautiful sunny day and we thoroughly enjoyed it outside! Aven showed off his soccer skills and scrimaged with Scott, Heather, Grampa Larry, and Great-Grampa Ray. We grilled steak and stuffed ourselves well before a suspenseful croquet tournament (congrats Amanda!) and finished off the party with frisbee golf. If only every day could be so fun!

June 20-21 -Camping at Gold Basin-
Heather and Amanda grabbed a beautiful spot on Friday afternoon and got to enjoy the river in the sun before we arrived. We pulled in at dinnertime and enjoyed bratwurst, hotdogs and steak with our wine and cheese- mmmm. Aniya was all smiles and Aven played Darth Vader with his red glowstick. The sites were our favorite so far! They were very private and far apart with really unique forest everywhere - lots of hanging moss and huge old tree stumps, we felt like gnomes. The rest of us checked out the river on Saturday, very pretty with great river rock everywhere. Started to rain so we skipped the hike and went back to town for a movie! Forgot: plates, salt and pepper, lighter fluid

June 26-29 Carroll visit, camping at Camano Island
Jill, Stephen, Sophia and Bella Carroll visited us from Thursday to Saturday! We had a blast seeing them again and having the 'twins' Aniya and Bella together again! Highlights included the amazingly treacherous frisbee golf adventure, seeing naked Aniya and Bella together (it was hot), chalk-drawing and swinging with Aven and Sophia, and hearing both babies laugh for the first time on the same day! Can't wait to see them again.

Heather, Joe and Amanda got a great spot in the Camano Island campground and we met them on the beach Saturday. It was a great lazy afternoon of drinks, snacks, and pirate-ship building (good job Dustin, Joe and Aven). Sunny especially enjoyed the water. As it got later we realized we (the adults) were getting a little too sun-fried and we headed back to the site for some grillin' and chowin'. The mosquitos were full bore regardless of time of day but we still enjoyed our wine and cheese, bratwurst and beef stew. We didn't forget s'more roasting before bed and slept alright despite the heat. We passed up the 3-mile hike for a movie in town- Wall-E! Forgot: butter, salt and pepper

July 3-6 - 4th of July trip to Icicle River-
We had our longest camping trip yet! Susie, Larry, Heather, Joe, Crystal and Scott joined us at Icicle River. We tried to snag a spot on Thursday around lunchtime but ended up racing around several campgrounds trying to find available sites!! We ended up grabbing two adjoining sites at upper Johnny Creek (one "upstairs" and one "downstairs" Aven said) that worked out perfectly. Our new canopy provided some shade as we watched the amazing dirt-burrowing bees and cooked yummy food. We all ventured up the mountain for a rocky, steep 3 mile hike, and some were greeted by a rattle-snake! The little beach on Icicle River the next day was fun but - of course - icy cold. It was pretty hot - we ended up drinking more than 6 gallons of water as a group and had to buy more in Leavenworth the last night (course the dogs were drinking our bottled water too). It was a great adventure but it was great to get home to our own bed after 3 days! And now it's time for some of our own fireworks. Forgot: nothing!

July 11-13 - Tri-City trip-
Katie packed the two kiddos in the car and skipped town to give Dustin a chance to finish his movie once and for all! As the first trip without Daddy, it proved to be a bit stressful. Everything worked out OK despite Aniya's hatred of the carseat. Aven is a dream to travel with and had a wonderful weekend. We all did! We bbq'd at the Carroll's on Friday and spent Saturday hunting for and finally enjoying a wading pool. Bella and Aniya swam for the first time in it! Then on Sunday we bbq'd sausages and enjoyed Mom and Dick's amazing food from their garden and amazing cooking, mmmm, and more swimming! Aven got his first sunburn (not too bad) on his shoulders but we got home exhausted and smiling. Dustin got a lot done on his movie and it is submitted to it's first film festival!

July 18-20 Leavenworth-
A cousin extravaganza took place this weekend at Gramma Lindberg's house and beach! All 6 cousins - Katelyn, Sophia, Aven, Eli, Aniya, and Bella - most of their folks, Chloe the lab and Gramma Lindberg all got together for some great fun in the sun. We did it all! The beach and water were great, seems like just yesterday us folks were playing there as children. Then came a walk to downtown Leavenworth of course, complete with the old metal stroller in its third generation, originally used to cart around Papa Jon as a baby! We found traditional "big bob" bratwurst and saurkraut, then had waffle-cone ice-cream for dessert! The slumber party in the hot loft was memorable as was the Sunday breakfast on the deck. Can't wait to go back!

July 25-27 Aquafest Festivities, Lake Stevens-
Aven and Aniya had a great time at this year's Aquafest celebration in our home town. They were in the kid's parade with Katie on Friday, and Aven went bezerk at the kiddie carnival!! On Sunday we got to celebrate Great Aunt Linda's 60th birthday as well. It was the first Aquafest weekend in a long time that was actually a bit rainy, so we didn't do as many activities as we would have liked. But we did enjoy the ice-cream, live music, and street soccer a bit!

Aug. 1-3 Anniversary weekend at Ocean Shores!
We celebrated our 9th anniversary with 3 days in Ocean Shores, Wa. Katie, Aven and Aniya had never been there before. You can drive on the beach! And have fires! So we did both! We had a blast looking for sand dollars and flying a kite (with straws as a support- good job Dustin!) on the windy beach, enjoying the hotel pool, and two rounds of mini golf at the famous mini golf place. As for food....mmm we ate well. We grilled sausage and big fresh shrimp ON the beach, then later enjoyed Irish fare at the local pub with live music. We never forget to sample the local pizza and ice cream before leaving also! We also made a tractor city and movie with Aven in the sand...great trip! It was Aniya's first look at the Pacific too. We will be finding sand in many places for weeks to come...

August 10 Tri-cities trip take 4-
Paul's b-day weekend celebration and fun in the sun...

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