Friday, October 30, 2015

Indian Creek Campground, Priest Lake

My husband Gary is a pastor, so you wouldn't think we'd get many weekends off, right? Thankfully in this district, he gets a weekend off when there are five Saturdays in a month. October is one of those months, so we headed to Priest Lake here in Northern Idaho!

Isn't Northern Idaho pretty cold in late October? What is an 8-month pregnant lady doing going camping? Don't worry, we borrowed a trailer! Heaters, lights, a real bed, a bathroom, and preparing meals indoors!

Here's our first look at the lake on Friday afternoon. We were racing to beat the sun, so we didn't linger over the views. We camped at Indian Creek Campground, and though it's only 20-30 miles from where we live as the crow flies we had to make a giant U around the mountains to get there. Still, Indian Creek is just over 2 hours away, and we will be back!

On Saturday after a questionable night's sleep despite the real bed and heaters, we ate breakfast and headed out to see what we could see. We started at Headquarters where the boys learned about different animals and their fur while Gary chatted with the rangers about hikes and kayak trips and bear safety.

Then we headed off on a hike! We walked so fast everything was blurry! Either that or my cell phone photography skills are especially lacking in low light!

There was a chance of rain, the sky was overcast, and the temperature was stuck somewhere in the 40s. We had sweatshirts and were just warm enough if we kept walking.

We chose a hike called the Viewpoint Trail and should have known it required some altitude to get a good view of the lake. I'm proud to say this winded, 40-year-old, 8-months pregnant lady did not die! I rested frequently and just kept plodding along.

It really was a beautiful view!

The boys explored the rocks and moss while we kept a lookout for bears and mountain lions. The only thing we saw was a squirrel.

Of course there was the celebratory selfie!

We hiked back down to the lake in a quarter of the time it took us to climb up. We think we walked about 2 miles total, though our apps weren't working we were so remote.

The ranger had told us about some red fish we could see from the boat dock, so we headed over to investigate.

Sure enough, there they were!

These are Kokanee salmon who come to the shallow water to spawn. They were about a foot long and swimming in groups by the shore. Very cool.

The lake looked moody and cold! This was about midday. We learned that Priest Lake has a long history of Indian settlements, Jesuit priests, and early settlers.

We took a break for lunch (and heaters!) back at the trailer, then came out to explore some more of the shore and let the boys play on the playground equipment.

Indian Creek Campground has cabins for rent, but they're just bunks and heaters, no cooking facilities or bathrooms. There are community bathrooms but all water is shut off from October-April, so you're best off in a trailer if it's cold. The campground is open year round and there are snow shoeing/cross-country skiing trails in the woods.

Gary and the boys gathered firewood and built a raging inferno that afternoon. It was cozy to sit by the fire and be warm! It would have been proper to have hot dogs roasted over the fire, but I didn't even think of that until we were there! Oh well, we enjoyed our spaghetti dinner inside the trailer, then roasted marshmallows in the fire and made s'mores. Phew--at least I remembered that!

We also got ice cream at the camp store! We MADE the boys eat it, as you can clearly see. Stinkers! This was some marshmallow-pop rock weird stuff that the lady PILED on their cones. Needless to say, Gary and I had portions that should have been shared between three people, but we did our duty and packed it away. #cleanplateclub

Our second night redeemed the first, but after a pancake breakfast we had to head home. Don't worry, Priest Lake, we'll be back!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Homemade Burp Cloths

I confess, this isn't a DIY or tutorial, just a report on something I did with a few pictures to make it post-able. There are plenty of tutorials out there, this one being very similar to what I did.

I don't have any burp cloths for our baby girl yet. There's still a month to go and two baby showers, but I also had a stack of receiving blankets I'd gotten as hand-me-downs. Personally, I prefer swaddler blankets or the thicker, softer baby blankets. That got me thinking, I should make burp cloths out of the receiving blankets!

So one evening I cut down several of the little blankets while watching an Income Property marathon. I also made a stack of washable wipes with the same blankets. (I may or may not write about those some day, we'll see.)

I chose to round the corners because that's how the receiving blankets were made. I then matched up two coordinating patterns, then sewed them together on the machine. I thought the double layers would help the burp cloths be more absorbent. And they're cute.

I actually had to take my sewing machine in for a check-up before I could complete this project. It gave me the incentive to get it fixed, finally! I asked around for a local repair shop and was given the name of a man who works out of his garage. He was so nice! He tweaked the tension and showed me a few tips, added a nut here and a screw there, and sent me on my way. I asked how much I owed and he said, "Nothing!" I've felt totally blessed all day because of his generosity. And he has a loyal customer as long as we live here!

It didn't take me long to sew the two pieces of flannel together. And now I have a nice stack of burp cloths! I think 10 is enough, but I have a few more receiving blankets if I want more!

Have you sewed anything lately? I'm thinking of making a crib skirt...

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Etsy Favorites: Her Edition

I had so much fun putting together last week's Etsy Favorites: Baby Girl Edition that I decided to do it again. This time I'm focusing on things for HER. 

I just love everything on this list. I've saved everything as a "favorite" liked all of these shops. It's just so hard to choose! I might just forward this to my husband for Christmas ideas!

Everyone loves to be pampered, so why not get this spa set with homemade scrubs, lotions, butters and lip balms? The price is very reasonable too!

I would totally wear this purple shawl. Isn't it lovely? It's staged here for a wedding, but I would wear it to church or when I'm dressing up and want something other than a coat. Isn't it beautiful?

I don't know about you, but it's hard to be warm and have cute hair at the same time when it's really cold out. Enter this crochet hat! You can wear it as a way to keep warm and not have to remove it when you get to your destination. And you don't have to do your hair. Win!

I thought this set of boot cuffs was adorable. I love the look of cozy socks sticking out of boots. You can wear these upside down if your outfit doesn't call for lace.

I've been wanting to add a plaid scarf to my collection, and I love this red one! It's festive for Christmas but not so much that you can't wear it before and after the holidays too. And it's warm!

I'd like to get into the habit of wearing an apron when I cook. This hemp apron looks like an easy addition to your outfit because you don't have to tie it. I personally don't like that part of apron wearing.

I adore this  leather tote! Isn't it beautiful! The price is pretty decent, and it looks as though it would last forever. I only own a handful of purses and like to use them for years, so I know I would get a lot of use out of this one. Now is it big enough to use as a diaper bag?

I don't wear jewelry, but this name bracelet is something I love! There are several variations available, some with dates, some with names, some with a single charm and a collection of names, or each one with a birthstone. I'd get names and birthstones, but I don't really like the colors of my kids' birthstones-ha!

Every woman needs a planner, so why not get a personalized one with trendy chevron? I would totally use this for meal planning, doctor appointments, school things, you know, life!

My first baby has a huge, complicated, detailed scrap book. My second baby has the cover but nothing was done. My third baby... has nothing. I'd like to go with digital scrap paper and create books online that are professionally printed and bound. Need to get to work on that!

What have you found on Etsy lately? Next week I'm doing a Home Edition and, wow, I had a hard time narrowing it down!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Another Basement

Our basement in this house we're renting would make a great BEFORE.

I hope you like orange and brown!

Or That 70s Show!

Yup. Orange carpet and trim, brown paneling. Straight out of the 70s.

I had fun using old things for this mantel.

We moved our old couch downstairs, I rolled out a rug to try to break up all the orange carpet, and we're using a trunk as a coffee table.

There is a crate of kid books beside the couch--forgot to take a picture of it--and I think this will be a cozy spot to curl up during the winter.

Our guest room is in the basement and grandmas are taking turns helping us out when the baby's born. Next door to this room is the boys' playroom, and Gary's office is in a section of this large living room.

There's also a gym! Gary uses this area a lot and I might use the treadmill to gently get back into walking after having a baby.

One thing missing in this basement? A bathroom! That's definitely something we'd add if this was our house. Before even changing the carpet! Painting the paneling though? That would be high on the list!

Hey, we're just thankful for the extra space! Even if it is stuck in the 70s!


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