Another Joyce Adventure!

A few weeks ago Joyce and mom took a drive up Del Puerto Canyon to see the damage from the August fire and, well, just for something to do! They came across a spring water site where you could fill your water jugs for free with healthy drinkable water.

Tuesday Mom, Joyce and I took the same drive, but this time they had their water jugs with them.

“It’s just before you get to Frank Raines Park.”

Well we arrived at Frank Raines Park.

“How the hell did we miss it?”

We all admitted we were looking at the scenery on the right side of the canyon instead of looking for the spring water site on the left. So we turned around to backtrack. There was no cell service so we couldn’t Google map it.

“It’s gotta be just around the corner.” (Heard that at least 20 times!) “I am POSITIVE it was before Frank Raines Park.” (Said by both mom and Joyce.)

We drove and drove and drove until finally… nope, we didn’t come across it… we were all the way back to the freeway!

We decided to drive a little further towards Patterson until we had cell service. When we could finally look it up guess what?? Adobe Springs was PAST Frank Raines Park! (I don’t know what mom and Joyce were smoking the day they took their drive!!)

“Do we turn around and go back up the canyon again?“I’m not going home without water!” “We have nothing else to do!”

So back up the hill we went… 20 miles of narrow, rough, curvy road. And guess what? Just two miles PAST Frank Raines Park we finally found Adobe Springs.

Going anywhere with Joyce is always a fun adventure!

The entire drive we were surrounded by the devastation from the fire. Beautiful Del Puerto Canyon. (How many Patterson High alumni used to drive up there to “park”???)

Making A List

One of the first things we do when I have the boys is to have a meeting and plan what we want to accomplish for the day. They take turns telling me what they want to do, I write them down then we cross them off as the day progresses.

Snack time“, “lunch time” and “play time” are always on the top of their list. Yesterday they added “ride scooters to Gigi’s“, “art“, “yard work” (actually, I added that!), “quiet time” (I added that too!!), and “sit in the spa“.

Brenden takes this list very seriously!

We didn’t accomplish everything on the list… we never do. Sit in the spa was a high priority. Thankfully it was a beautiful day to pull up a chair and enjoy this time outside watching them.

Kari NEVER leaves their side!
It always starts out so calm and loving…
but I raised two boys, so I am well aware that “calmness” NEVER lasts!

Let’s just say I had to add water to the spa after they got out!

Pizza… It’s What’s For Lunch

Yesterday I had the boys. Their usual go-to lunch when I have them is either fish sticks or peanut butter and jelly (or honey) sandwich with fruit. But since I had all the ingredients to make pizza, which I know they love, we did that. Or rather I should say Brenden did that. He made the whole thing with a little guidance from me.

We had leftover dough, so while the pizza was baking Brenden practiced flattening and tossing the pizza dough like the pros do.

We had lots of laughs… especially when the dough ended up on the range… on the floor… and almost on his head!

Brenden made part of the pizza without the pepperoni because Logan just likes cheese. It turned out to be delicious, but let me tell you… next week we’re back to fish sticks or peanut butter and jelly sandwiches!

Favorite Quiet Time

Yesterday I said I love some quiet time, but did I tell you my favorite time for it? I know you guessed it… early in the morning. Really early. I usually very quietly get up somewhere between 4:00-5:00 a.m. I don’t wake Dave or Kari, I tiptoe out… turn on the heat and start my coffee pot. I usually get one to one and a half hours all to myself.

It is my favorite part of my day.

Quiet Time

Maybe one of these days, hopefully soon, I will go somewhere that will inspire my photography creativity, but in the meantime I will continue to play with pictures from the past.

These cold, foggy mornings and dreary days have instilled a certain quietness in me. I’ve pretty much abandoned Facebook and the news and have noticed more of a calmness within. I don’t know if that’s good or bad.

The early morning at Eagle Lake. All is calm..

Cheating or Lucky?

Saturday when we were at the bird wildlife refuge watching… well… birds, we kept hearing gunshots. The other guy that was there pointed out that right across the narrow road hunters were shooting the birds. It was private property, so I’m sure no laws were broken, but it seemed like too easy prey to be hunting right across from the refuge.

This is a picture of real birds… all the white are birds.
This is a picture of bird decoys… all are fake. (There are some hunters camouflaged in there too.) I just turned from where I was standing on the viewing platform to take this picture. It fooled even me…

I watched for a while, and when birds flew over you could hear guns popping and see the birds dropping. We have many hunters in our family, and I am not against it, but I have to admit it bothered me. Maybe because of their location I thought it was cheating.

This guy on the refuge side of the road seemed to be flushing out the birds for the hunters across the street. They would all fly when he got close to them. Not sure he was allowed to be there, but again I could be wrong.
I zoomed in on this picture. After they shot the birds you could see the guys get up to collect them.

What do you think? Cheating or lucky to have private property right across from the refuge?

Oh Birds!

“Looking Up”

Saturday we took a little trip to the San Joaquin River National Wildlife Refuge on Beckwith Road here in Modesto. There is a wildlife viewing platform for viewing the Aleutian cackling geese along with other waterbirds from October through March.

This guy said he’d been there over an hour. Really? Just watching birds? I like birds and all, but (1) it was freezing, and (2) what are you watching them do?

While I could never stay and watch for an hour like this guy, it was really interesting and a pretty view. I’m thinking Brenden and Logan would enjoy going when I have them tomorrow.

Remember the Alfred Hitchcock movie The Birds???? I couldn’t help but think of that when so many birds flew over!