Saturday, July 23, 2016

Fiddle Camp

It's summer.
Now what day of the week is it?

Yah, that's how it feels ;D

The time... it's flying by.

But Things have been Happening.

Things like fiddle camp.
Gunnar and I drove over to Moses Lake so he could spend a week at fiddle camp :D

Because I have zero interest in driving through Seattle when it can reasonably be avoided,
we took the long way.
The scenic way.
Highway 20.

First stop:

Gorge Creek.

Gorge Creek - home of the scary bridge.

And the incredible gorge.
And the goofy boy.

Next stop:
Washington Pass.

Gunnar, on the brink of disaster... not.


Love those stairs... and that boy!

We're lichen it ;D

Gunnar's lunch dreams came true in Winthrop, at...

Three fingers

Cruised through Brewster...

Made a quick stop at Dry Falls...

And settled into our hotel in Moses Lake to be ready first thing in the morning for...
Fiddle Camp!

Fiddle camp is our nickname.
Actually it's a fiddle "workshop",
which means classes from 9 until 3:30.

See Gunnar, right in front of the door near the back?

Gunnar was in a "Lower Intermediate" class.
Most of these students had been playing 2-4 years,
and they were all ages.
A couple kids looked about 7 or 8,
and there were gray haired grannies as well :D

Meanwhile, while Gunnar fiddled....

I spent the day at the hotel,
storing up Vitamin D for winter.

It takes a lot of energy and focus to play a violin all day long,
and Gunnar was glad to be done for the day
and just relax and goof around!

Day One is in the bag ;D

Meanwhile, Day Two,
Gunnar is back in class,
and I am suffering for the cause ;D

Evening - Gunnar is studying for his next CAP promotion...

... while I'm watching the beautiful sunset from our balcony :D

Day Three,
Gunnar is back at camp,
and I'm taking one for the team ;D

I'd interrupt my demanding schedule to go meet him for lunch :D

And we'd chill out at the pool later in the afternoon :D

The first day, especially, was quite challenging for Gunnar.
He considered moving into an easier class,
but decided he would likely be bored if he did,
and it was better to be "pushed".

By mid-week, he was settling into the rhythm and feeling more comfortable :D

Day four and five followed the same pattern.

At the end of the week, all 19 (I think) of the classes performed a piece they'd been working on,
and the instructors each performed.

Many of the instructors were amazing.
And having sat in on some of Gunnar's class time,
I can tell you they made a dramatic improvement in a week.
He has made great strides in his skill!

Though he was pretty nervous about playing in front of people -
even a friendly crowd like this one!

If I can figure out how, I'll post a video later.
They played a medley of Thanksgiving Hymns.
Not as "fiddle-y" as the other songs they learned,
but beautiful :D

Then the long drive home,
via a different route,
Highway 2.
But first we meandered through eastern Washington.

Transitioning from the drier center to orchard country, near the river.

Rock Island Dam.

Columnar basalt.

Crossing the Columbia.

We stopped in Cashmere do see some good friends of mine - the Huge family.
(Don't say "Hyoodg", say "Hyoo-gee" :D)

They very graciously invited us for dinner,
and let us kind of eat and run,
because they knew we wanted to get along home.

Good people!
And I forgot to get a single photo - doh!

We did have to make one more stop along the way,
to get a milkshake at...

Zeke's is a landmark, between Index and Gold Bar - a classic.

I'm amazed we didn't get caught in a big summer rainstorm crossing the pass,
doesn't it looks dark and foreboding back to the east?
But we didn't!

Had a wonderful trip!

It's fun to spend that kind of time with just one of my boys, for a change.
We're thankful that everything went smoothly,
in spite of being a bit frustrated the first day of class ;D

And glad to be home again, home again,

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

A Tuesday Brain Dump

1.  It's summer, even though the weather doesn't feel like it.

Last year:

Notice what's behind the boys...

Yah.  One of three fire-fighting helicopters.

This year?


Oh well, keeps it safer for fireworks!

2.  I want to do this.

But I won't
Where do you even get beach balls that big?
And what kind of paint would stick to them?

But wouldn't you love to do this?!
I mean, what if you looked out your window one morning and saw that!

It's a giant Muppet!

3.  Gunnar and I watched a little friend recently.

She wasn't entirely happy to be separated from her parents for a couple of hours.
If only she'd realized that hanging out with us is WAY more fun than
sitting in the car for a couple hours!

Oh well.

At least I got a good baby-snuggle :D
Isn't she a cutie?!

4.  Just down the alley from us...

a beautiful madrona tree.

5.  This is what I have to contend with in planning the next school year...


Of course they all have a different schedule.

But would it really be too hard to put their calendars in the same format?!

6.  This could be my boys, all day long.

7.  Kon-Mari this:

So, what's new with you?