My parents arranged for us to join them this fall in Leavenworth since we missed their first visit there. However, we visited Leavenworth in July for Jenni’s birthday, so it became our second voyage to the Bavarian town in Washington.
Unfortunately, a weather storm came through and shortened our trip. The rain prevented us from admiring the scenery we enjoyed on our drive there, and it made for wet walks into town. Then the temperature dropped and we almost got snowed in.
We only stayed one night but we managed to visit the reindeer farm. Jenni thought it would be an unique experience and it definitely was something my parents wouldn’t normally do. The reindeers happily ate snacks from our hands but we had to be wary of their grown antlers.
Before we drove home, we stopped by their Christmas shop and it was four floors stocked with all manners of ornaments, decorations, and gifts.
Despite a trip that was disappointingly short, we were thankful to revisit the town of Leavenworth, share memories with my parents, and got a glimpse of what Christmas would be like there.
This fall has been unusually warm, so the leaves at Costco didn’t change as early as we’re used to. Then the wildfire smoke smothered the day we would’ve tried and the leaves were cleaned up the next day.
So we moved our tradition to the leaves in front of Beaver Acres Elementary. There’s an extended sidewalk along the main street that provided us the colorful leaves for our tradition.
Despite being in the middle of June, we’re getting a substantial amount of rain. We’ve had at least two humming birds come to our backyard for a respite from the rain.
They move so fast, but I was able to snap a few shots when they’d perch to rest.
Jenni and the kids have been a part of On Pointe School of Ballet for several years now. They have an annual performance each year and it has been a blessing to showcase the art and gain performance skills.
Prior to the main story, the lyrical classes perform their dances.
This year’s show was the story of Hansel and Gretel and Bruce got a lead part. Jenni plays a candy cane and the girls are angels.
I borrowed my company’s new camera to take it for a spin and I was highly impressed by the silent shooting mode and incredible resolution. I easily filled up two 64GB SD cards because the camera shoots at 60 megapixels! In hindsight, I would’ve preferred the ability to shoot at a lower pixel count so I wouldn’t run out of space so quickly when I’m firing at 10 frames per second. I had over two thousand photos over three days to review and the final album had about six hundred photos.
Thanks to all the family and friends who came to support On Pointe and their performers!
We had a low-key Mother’s Day holiday as Violet and I have runny noses and my dad is quarantined with COVID-19. We spent the weekend relaxing to our respective hobbies but managed to take a few family portraits to celebrate Jenni.
Jenni is an amazing mom, following in the footsteps of her mother and her grandmother, by infusing so much love and fun into their children. Every day is a miracle watching her creatively take care of needs, fulfilling wants, and inspiring dreams.
Ever since I saw the Milky Way on a camping trip in 2015, I’ve been hooked on photographing our galaxy center each summer.
I found a blog post that included a download with a chart when the Milky Way would be visible in my area and started planning when I could see it again.
Cannon Beach was my first choice, but as the day arrived, the weather forecast showed clouds. So I used a combination of Dark Sky Finder, Google Earth, and Google Maps to find a new location. The chart showed that the Milky Way would be south and I also wanted to find an interesting foreground.
L.L. Stub Stewart State Park has been a good location in the past, but the campgrounds are closed to the public after dusk. I explored further north and found Vernonia Lake, which didn’t appear to have a gate in their parking lot.
It turned out to be a great spot and I managed to snap several shots before a patrol officer parked nearby to suggest that my time was up.
On Pointe’s performance for Sleeping Beauty was delayed, like many events last year, due to the coronavirus. Thankfully, the pandemic is getting closer to a new normal, and they were able to showcase their hard work this weekend.
Jenni and the kids all attend On Pointe School of Ballet and performed in Sleeping Beauty.
- Jenni played a Lady in Waiting
- Kadie and Violet played the Flowers
- Bruce played the Wolf
See the photos below for brief recap of the story.
And here’s a brief video highlight of the sections Jenni and the kids performed in.
Something I look forward to every summer is the chance to see our galaxy center. It’s a humble reminder that I’m not the center of the universe and there is something bigger beyond.