Monday, September 07, 2009

Rest and play at Pend Oreille

The minute I submitted my timecard and status reports on Thursday afternoon, Tom and I got in the car, bound for Lake Pend Oreille near Sandpoint in Northern Idaho where Tom’s sister Marcy lives with her family.  (Unfortunately, both Kat and Aleks had to work and Elisabeth had plans for the weekend, so we’d only be joined by Peter, who would meet us in Idaho, along with his cousin Tina, who is beginning her Freshman year at WSU.)

The terrain and climate of Washington State change dramatically as you cross the Cascade Mountain range.  One minute, you’re surrounded by green trees and the next minute you’re surrounded by farmland and mile upon mile of wheat fields. 

Goodbye green mountains…


Hello farmland…


and chaparral…


and endless wheat fields.


For at least half of the five hour drive to Sandpoint, you could nap for an hour or more and not notice any difference in terrain when you awake. 

Occasionally you come across some interesting rock formations…


but basically the majority of the drive looks like this:

IMG_4386  The vast, wide Columbia River breaks the monotony early on…


…along with some gorgeous wild horses (in sculpture form).


But basically, the drive looks like this:


…with an occasional rest stop:


Finally we arrived at Marcy’s family’s beautiful cabin on Bottle Bay.  I love this place!


My entire being just relaxes when I wake up here!

  IMG_0501 IMG_0505 IMG_0506


The evenings are just as magical as the mornings:

IMG_4512 IMG_4523 IMG_4506

And in between, we’ve been having a wonderful time with cousins who somehow grew up!

When Marcy’s family lived within a mile of us, the cousins were more like siblings.  Aleks and Barry were inseparable:


And NOW look at Barry!



Oh, how I wish Aleks could have come!

Tina and Kat’s were inseparable too…


And NOW look at Tina!

IMG_0509 (2)


Oh, how I wish Kat could have come!

They totally grew up, just like our kids did. 


I want them back!  I wish they never moved away and that the cousins were still best friends, but I know that they’re happy in this beautiful location – and we do get the added benefit of having a great place to come play once a year or so. 

IMG_0519 (2) It’s great to see Peter and his cousins together…

IMG_0485IMG_4538  …and to have some time with just Peter.IMG_0501 (2)


Marcy has a new best friend, appropriately named Moose!  I try not to be jealous…   :-)

IMG_0495 (2)

Tomorrow we’ll all head back – Peter and Tina to WSU and Tom and I to Seattle… but not back to work for me!  On Tuesday I’ll take another vacation day and we’ll take Kat to Bellingham so she can look at Western Washington University, where she’ll be applying this year as a transfer student.

There’s no wireless at the cabin, so who knows when I’ll post this.  By the time you see it, we’ll likely be headed back through the wheat fields and chaparral toward the green of Western Washington again. 

See you on the other side! 

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Jen said...

Wow, Carol, these pictures are amazing, especially for someone like me, who's never been across the terrains you describe.

I also can't get over the family resemblance between the various cousins!

Lorrene said...

Fantastic Pictures !!!

agategal said...

What an awesome place! Cousins are the greatest of all relatives, I swear!

Anonymous said...

I don't think I would have EVER recognized Barry. How did that adorable little boy grow into this handsome young man??I can't wait to show Erin? Tina I think I would have recognized, and definitely Marcy!

Thanks for the pictures- hope your week back at work isn't too stressful.


Margaret said...

Great photos! I've been on that road so the route looks very familiar. My younger daughter is a soph at WWU and loves it (and Bellingham)! I share your dismay at how quickly kids grow up. :(

jennifer said...

Whoa, you're coming to my town tomorrow? Where are you having lunch? I'm going to DM you my contact info on Twitter - call me if you have some spare moments either around lunchtime or later afternoon!!! -- Jennifer

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