Pine Cove

As a mom of all boys, I often feel left out of their world. Their baseball skills have surpassed my ability to play catch in the backyard. Their imaginary play doesn't often welcome a girl. And I don't really see the point in laughing at bodily functions. When I found out about mother/son conference at Pine Cove, I jumped on the idea. Nowhere else have I seen the opportunity to spend meaningful one-on-one time with one of my boys.

Liam and I thoroughly enjoyed our time at Pine Cove a couple of weeks ago. He's my easy-going, life-is-fun, let's-try-everything-at-least-once boy. So he was the perfect child to take for our first attempt at mother/son camp.

Pine Cove keeps you busy from the moment you arrive. If we weren't eating a yummy meal, we were in a Bible lesson or playing some crazy game. And if we weren't involved in any of those activities, we were trying to catch a few hours of sleep.

We were so busy that I didn't remember to carry my camera half the time, but I did remember it for some of Saturday afternoon's free time. For about 5 hours, we could choose from archery,
BB guns,
swimming, horseback riding, wall climbing, go go ball, basketball, zip line, etc.

We went with our good friends, the Martins. Liam and Cab have been friends since they were three.When I asked Liam what his favorite activity was, he named Pitch Black Attack, which was a scavenger hunt at dark thirty. It was crazy but fun.

But what I really enjoyed was time focusing on one boy. There were many hours spent with the whole group of campers, but the schedule also gave us meaningful one-on-one time to chat and sit face to face.

I love that kid!
At the end of the weekend, Liam and Cab gave Pine Cove two thumbs up.
And neither one of them want to stay home when the moms take younger brothers in March. But every boy needs to get away with his mom for some individual attention.

Why Can't We Live There???

Buckle your seat belts and get ready for a photo dump! We've been home from our Colorado vacation for some six weeks, and I haven't done one single thing with our hundreds of photos. Consider yourself warned....

Yes, we went to Colorado for two weeks in early August. We began our trip at our family cabin near Pagosa Springs, where we stretch our legs on some acreage nearly every year.

The boys are always happy to hit the ground running, whether it be hiking, fishing, digging in the dirt, or whatever mood may strike them. Occasionally, we'll catch them in a loving mood.

Liam (8), Jackson and Garrett (6)

A new activity for us this year was shooting the boys' new BB gun. Everyone tried it out. Even moi.

Let's just say that it's a good thing we don't have to survive on what we shoot.

And let's also say that some of us look better in the safety glasses than others.
Although our "lake" was low enough to be called a pond, we did try to fish.
But this dead minnow that Garrett caught is the only fish we have to brag about.
He was so darn proud of that minnow! He carried it around until we told him we couldn't keep it. "But WHY?," he asked. "Because it's DEAD," we explained.

Marshall might have killed something for dinner.
Isn't that a great photo?! The hunting magazines will be calling me to post it in their latest and greatest; I know they will. I'm trying to decide if I should ask for big bucks or for a new home for the dog.

To clear things up: 1. No, that furry thing in Marshall's mouth was never living. It's his play raccoon. 2. The dog is not for sale at the moment. I do change my mind frequently, however. 3. He was an absolute angel on our trip, because he could run and romp all day long in the mountains. Now that we're back home where it's hotter than hades, he's anything but an angel. 4. Do you want him?

Another new activity for the boys this year was building this tepee.
They wanted a tree house or a fort of some kind, but Daddy nixed the idea and convinced them that a tepee was even better. It did turn out to be quite cool, and the boys spent hours out there.

One evening, we took a drive to look at other properties in our community. We ran across this mama deer and her THREE babies. I have never seen a deer with so many young! My heart went out to her as she frantically tried to keep them at her side while we snapped pictures from our car. It's tough work wrangling three little ones, and I speak from experience.
Of course, we hiked on a few different days. I can't remember the name of the hike that took us to the beautiful lake, but it was picturesque, to say the least.
The Archuletta County Fair took place while we were in town, so we took Jack to meet Jack.
For the record, it was Rick's idea to take a picture of his son next to a donkey. Son, I would never do such a thing.

Each of the boys took a try at the fake bull thing. (What's it called?) They all enjoyed it, but Garrett had the best belly laugh. When he lets loose and has a good laugh, it's the best medicine for me.
Liam played and won the hula hoop contest.
Yes, he did have competition, but I didn't take their pictures.

Mid-way through our vaca, we took a few days to stay in Ouray. Let me tell you something. I COULD LIVE THERE! It is so amazingly beautiful with mountains all around and every activity within walking distance.

On our way to Ouray, we stopped to get some pics. I believe this is near Georgetown, but Rick will correct me if I'm wrong. (I'm terrible with geography, people. And my memory failed me about the first day of motherhood, so trying to remember a specific geographical location 6 weeks after the fact...forget it!)

Anyway, we took various photos near Georgetown, and but this one cracks me up.
We wanted Marshall to sit nicely next to Liam, but as with all Labs, he thinks he's a lap dog and tried to climb into every one's lap.

But here's proof that he really was an angel.
He's so cuuute when he's being cute.

(No, that's not a muzzle around his snout. It's a gentle leader and works like a horse's halter. In other words, it's a life saver when I'm trying to walk him and don't want him to pull off my arms.)

Probably our favorite activity of the entire trip took place in Ouray. We paid for a driver to take us up to Imogene Pass in a four wheel drive truck.
Along the way, we were able to enjoy amazing scenery. This dilapidated mining home made us grateful for our own home.
The pictures don't do the flowers any justice at all. When Rick took this picture, we could literally see nothing but flowers all around us. I'm pretty sure this was a little slice of heaven.
A hairy and bumpy ride took us to the top, where winter greeted us. We were warm in our shorts at the beginning of the tour but teeth-chattering cold at the top with sleet falling on us.
This is where my mom will ask why we didn't wear pants and heavy coats. Ask your son-in-law.

We made it!!!
On the way down, our driver stopped and pulled the kids out. We had no idea what he was doing, but we trusted him well enough to know he wouldn't push them off the mountain. Instead, they all broke out singing "The Hills are Alive!" It was hilarious!
If you're interested in a scenic 4WD tour in Ouray, look up Keith. He was a fantastic tour guide with a lot of historical information, spot-on sense of humor, and amazing patience with kids.
No, we did not adopt a little girl. I can't remember her name (the whole memoryfailingmeproblem again), but she and her little brother became fast friends with my boys.

I gotta wrap this up and make dinner. As the song goes, back to life, back to reality. Why can't we just go back to Colorado???

By the way, aren't you glad I didn't dump hundreds of pics here?

Peace out!