Relaxed to the Max

We've both been working pretty hard this summer. Mike has been working hard because he's newly retired, and he's been putting stuff off in anticipation of his new free time for approximately six years. As for me...well, I just need more hours in my day. Period. And so we're enjoying this day of forced inactivity with several more days on the horizon.

Before I go on, I need to tell you the most important news. There was just enough time before completing my packing yesterday to finish the hand-quilting on Mumm's the Word. Excuse me for just a moment while a jump for joy.

It was fast on its way to becoming "The Thing that Wouldn't Leave" in my sewing room. Now, all that's left is the binding. I can hardly wait to get home and finish this one off once and for all.

We had an uneventful trip up to Lake Mayfield...always a good thing. It's about an hour from our house to the Oregon-Washington border where one crosses the drawbridge known as the "Interstate Bridge" (that's I-5) over the Columbia River.

About three-fourths of the way across the bridge, you see the sign telling you you're entering the State of Washington.

Another 66 miles up the road, we turn east on US Hwy 12 and head for Lake Mayfield. I took this next picture to tell you that Spiffy's restaurant has kind of a special place in our hearts. Because we've been coming to this lake for decades, we remember when Spiffy's was nothing more than a road-side stand. They are also a bakery and they have the most amazing cinnamon rolls. They've been a large Denny's-style restaurant for a long time, but we always get a yen for their delicious cinnamon rolls every time we pass by. And this time...we did pass by.

Of course, I took pictures of barns all along the way. If you're new to this blog, you should know that when you travel with me, you see a lot of barns.

Also, at various spots along the way, one can get a glimpse of Mt. Rainier. Mt. Rainier is a huge mountain and it's also designated a national park. It is, however, surprisingly difficult to see it practically until one drives right up to the gates of the national park. Nevertheless, I caught this image of it. It's so big, we can see it from our house, approximately 200 miles away.

When we arrived, we let the kitties out of their kennels right away. They were fine, but they were in full-on escape mode. Smitty actually escaped out the door once, but when he got outside, he looked completely confused realizing he wasn't at home. Then, he turned tail and ran for the door of the camper. I doubt he'll be running out again.

Little Sadie has poorer judgment, however, and so we're watching her like hawks, getting a good grip on her whenever we open the door. As extra insurance, we have a squirt bottle stationed outside so we can squirt her back if we're trying to get inside and she's there trying to get out. Think of it as a mini-fire-hose treatment. We haven't had to use it yet, but we will. Oh yes. We will. 

As an aside, I have an appointment to have her microchipped when we get home. Smitty already has a chip, and I've re-registered him and paid for a year-long maintenance contract with 24PetWatch.com. Unfortunately, Sadie will be with a different company, but it will work just the same. We'll also be putting collars on them with tags indicating their microchip numbers and a telephone number to call the associated companies. It seems extra insurance for when we make our multi-state trip this fall.

Eventually, the kitties settled into nap mode, and now all is mostly well. They'd still like to escape, I think, but they are more relaxed. They've eaten, had a drink, used their potty box, scratched at their scratching pad, and explored all the nooks and crannies, and generally given the place a once over. I know they have some things they want to tell you, and so I'll give them a chance to write a blog post a little later.

We had a little trouble with the screen on the catio window. In the fifth wheel, the window and screen slide to the side, and so it works just fine. With this new window in the camper sliding up, however, the screen doesn't want to stay in place. The Resident Engineer is going to fashion a hook for it from a wire coat hanger when we get home. For now, a rubber spatula is working well to prop it up. This solution brought to you by the Kitchen Engineer.

Here's a satellite image of the area where we are. We're in the little town of Harmony, Washington. You can see Lake Mayfield right in the middle of the image.

We're in a beautiful lakeside spot. This is the view through the window from our table this morning.

There is a steep embankment and a fence. Just on the other side of the fence, there are wild currants growing. These actually grow all over this area, and so even though these are out of reach, there are plenty all around the campground.

Overhead...tall trees. Being a military brat, we traveled back and forth across the country many times in a little tiny camper trailer. I never feel more at home than when I look up and see this sight.

Only now, I'm with my sweety of many years. He was 18 and I was 16 when we met, which means we've known one another for 47 years. He wasted no time planting his butt in his lawn chair, cool beverage in hand.

This is his view.

Smitty was none too happy about being excluded from cocktail hour, a time he generally spends with us when we're at home.

A little later on, we walked to where our boat trailer is parked. Mike needed to get a quick-release hook off the trailer, which I'll explain in a minute. Along the way, we noticed the lovely gardens in this park, including this hibiscus. I wouldn't think these would grow in our cool climate, but there you go.

Also, this blooming yucca plant putting on its most spectacular show of the season.

Upon check-in, we were told that the man who lived her and tended these gardens for 35 years passed away recently. Now there is a new gardener who's only been here a couple of months. Apparently the gardens aren't as pretty as they usually are, but they seemed beautiful to us.

Our 21-foot boat (the one in the middle on the left) has only a 14-foot slip where it's docked. Mike did a little bit of rope engineering to protect it from banging against the dock. Now, we can just throw off the ropes and drive away, but he wanted a quick-release hook from the trailer for the bow. He was attaching it when I took this next picture.

Looking left, this is what you see from where I'm standing.

Looking right, this is what you see.

On the way back to the camper, we saw this little cottontail.

We slept well last night, even though the kitties were a little restless. Someone's car alarm went off in the middle of the night, and it took them a minute to get it shut off. How embarrassing. Glad it wasn't us. Smitty got under the covers and slept right beside me, just like at home.

Today's agenda is thus:

1. Have Breakfast.

2. Take an after-breakfast nap. (Mike only.)

3. Write blog post (Me only.)

4. Kitties take morning naps.

5. Be lazy.

6. Go boating.

7. Have lunch.

8. Take after-lunch nap.

9. Go boating.

10. Have dinner.

11. Be lazy.

12. Go to bed.

As you can see, there is still much left on today's to-do list. Time to get going if we're to fit it all in.

18 comments from clever and witty friends:

Dorothy Finley said...

What a beautiful lake. I live in WA and have never heard of it before. Thanks for taking me along on your trip :-)

Lyndsey said...

The lake looks beautiful and I love the shape of that second barn. Well done on finishing the quilting on Mumms the word. Your itinerary for the day looks perfect for a relaxing time.Thanks for taking me along on your trip and I'm joining in with the relaxation as well.

Julierose said...

Sounds like such a relaxing and great time you are having.
I love your "Mum's the Word" finish--such a great quilt...hugs, Julierose

Shari said...

Sounds like a perfect vacation. I thought about you last week when I was driving across Wisconsin. There are so many scenic farms in that state. Have a great time! Hope the kitties settle in.

Debbie said...

Long agenda sounds good to me! Mike looks quite settled into his retirement. Beautiful views and don't get sun burned on the lake.

gpc said...

How lovely. I am glad to see that Mike is taking to retirement, it is such a struggle to truly become a slacker but I mastered it and it looks like he is well on his way. A spatula to secure the patio -- fancy, quite artsy. Smitty will expect that splash of color now wherever he goes, I imagine.

carol l mckenna said...

That quilt is amazing so creative and what an 'away' place you have ~ lovely ~ even if the cats aren't fond of it ~ love the photos ~ especially the bunny rabbit ~ ^_^

WoolenSails said...

You really picked the perfect spot, love the views and the campsite.


Ioleen said...

Thanks for sharing your beautiful pictures. You found a perfect place to park the camper. Mumm's quilt is gorgeous. Love your agenda ❤️❤️❤️

Vroomans' Quilts said...

Congrats on the finish of the quilting of Mumms! I love your daily to-do list while vacationing from retirement.

claudia said...

I love that bridge crossing the Columbia! I was excited crossing it the first time December 2014, then the second time January 2015 and the last time September 2015. Apparently, I'm not crossing it again for a while. It's just beautiful!
Congratulations on the finishing of the hand quilting on Mumm's the Word. It is a very cute quilt AND I LOVE ALL THE COLORS. You are a good quilt mom sticking with it to the end!
I really like barns too! In fact I live in one...a converted barn. It looks like the barn in your second picture except much smaller and red, yes, barn red. Well, it's also been added to, but you can still see the barn shape.
I would be so paranoid having my boys camping with me! I'm so afraid I'm going to lose them! I guess when I do get to do some traveling I will take all the precautions you are taking. (You haven't steered me wrong on anything yet!!!)
I will have to put Mayfield Lake on my bucket list of places tp visit in Washington. It looks like a beautiful place!

piecefulwendy said...

I like your to-do list, enjoy every minute! The views are beautiful. Glad the kitties are settling in as well. Have fun. Take lots of pics. I'll be waiting to see them!

Dana Gaffney said...

This looks like the perfect place to just relax, those views are gorgeous. Why did you reregister Smitty? I thought once they were registered it was good forever, especially if you register with your Vet too.
I like your list of things to do, make sure you do them all :)

Quilting Babcia said...

Sounds like a perfect retirement day! Enjoy.

Lana Ku said...

Great "schedule" for the day lol. What a beautiful, picturesque, relaxing place. I love the water and boating. And so glad to hear Smitty is microchipped and Sadie will be soon. With their travels, you want to be able to track those kids if they decide to go rogue! Haha

QuiltGranma said...

for some reason I thought you said Eastern WA, and could not remember where that lake was in EW. Then you said how you got there, and I knew! We are often on Hwy 12 on our way to at from bro-in-law's. Love those huckleberries! One summer before we moved to eastern WA from Western WA we picked 47 pounds of them! AH! Delicious!

Brown Family said...

that is a ridged schedule! Are you sure you included enough down time?

quiltzyx said...

Wow, what gorgeous views from your camping spot! (Much different from my view down here in the basement of Campus Safety) I am always happy to tag along on your trips. :)

Love that pic of Smitty behind the screen!