I will start by apologizing that the updates are not as frequent as we intend. Between my work schedule and the spotty internet, I have slacked on posting.
Now, on to our new hobby. Thanks to the inspiration and jumpstart on equipment and information by Stephanie’s brother and sister-in-law, we have begun geocaching. For anyone unfamiliar with this activity, it consists of using a GPS device to locate treasure boxes hidden by others using some clues and a set of coordinates. More information can be found at the official website here. There is even an app for the iPhone, which comes in a free but limited version, or the full version for $10 (direct links for the free version and paid version). We quickly purchased the full version, realizing that we are hooked on geocaching.
We have ventured out a few times in search of some caches. The kids have been able to find a few, but several have taken some help from mom and dad to locate and retrieve. We have tried to keep it to easy/beginner level ones, but I know that I am looking forward to advancing to the intermediate level caches. A benefit to geocaching is discovering locations along the way. On our first outing, while searching for a cache we came across a community garden in Carbondale. We happened upon it at the same time that one of the caretakers had shown up to harvest some food. It quickly turned into an educational moment as they talked about what food they were growing and had the kids help harvest some fava beans.
|Harvesting the pods, then sorting the beans.|
Stephanie’s mom was able to come visit us this past weekend. It was fun to get to use our ‘guest suite’, which is really our sofa that converts to an air bed. Stephanie and the kids were able to have some fun adventures with grandma, heading into Basalt and Snowmass, and we all were able to take a day to explore Aspen. We were able to find some fun parks to play at, some interesting stores to shop in, and we discovered a few geocaches along the way.
|Some bricks from a walk in Aspen. I loved seeing the older architecture in town.|
|We had to stop here. They had some fun and interesting items (and I have nothing to show).|
One of the perks that the kids have been thoroughly enjoying is having a library close by in Basalt. The library graciously issues short term lending cards, which Stephanie quickly picked one up. They have enjoyed multiple visits each week, with each child being able to check out a book of their choice. Stephanie also checks out some read aloud books and a movie or two as a treat for the kids.
I know that every parent will brag on their kids and say that they are so smart or bright, and I am no different. What has surprised me is the reading skills of my oldest two. They both have started to check out chapter books from the library, which has not been too much of a surprise. What has caught me off guard is how quickly that they are plowing through the books and their reading comprehension. They are reading through their books in 1-2 days, making it harder for Stephanie to keep up with them. I will admit that it is fun for me to walk in after work and see 2-4 kids sitting and reading intently. I can’t argue with a passion to learn.
The summer has been beautiful, and we are looking forward to fall coming around the corner. We anticipate only being in the area for a few more weeks, but do not have anything firmed up yet. Right now, we are taking things one day at a time and enjoying our time in Colorado.