Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Our Visit to the Old West Mining Town of Sumpter, Oregon

Good morning! Welcome to the Homemaking Party. 
Last Friday, we were having a great afternoon. The kids were all doing school nicely and I was puttering, when it occurred to me... I wanted to go to the mountains! So, we did. Two hours one way to our favorite old mining town of Sumpter, Oregon. Sumpter is about 30 minutes up the mountain from Baker City, the town Jamie and I grew up in. Three times a year, they offer the Sumpter Flea Market, featuring vendors from all over the northwest and Memorial Day weekend is the kickoff. I knew Friday afternoon was the calm before the storm of visitors so I figured it would be the best time to take nine children all by myself. Ha! 

On the way through Baker City, I was reminded of the short time I worked at the restored 19th century Geiser Grand Hotel shortly before we were married. It's gorgeous inside, too.

On the way up the mountain, I stopped to get a photo of Phillips Lake, a favorite hang out spot when Jamie and I were in high school and after we were newly married.

Directly across from the last scene is this one: the Elkhorn Mountains.

Once we got to Sumpter, we parked near the site of the Old Sumpter Bank. It was destroyed in a fire in the early 1900s so all that's left is the vault.

This is one of the oldest buildings in Sumpter, thought to have been built when the town was incorporated in 1866. I'm sure it's got a lot of memories bottled up inside---like an Old West T.A.R.D.I.S.!!!

We took a pretty wooded path down to the Dredge site. Last time I toured the Dredge was high school---about 1995. They've done a lot of restoration work on it since and it's a pretty fun educational site now.

Elisha spent some time explaining the mechanics of this giant mining machine. It was pretty cool. 

On the way back to the van, the girls found a couple pretty rocks.

...then, everyone found gold!!
{"Mom! We found gold! Is this REAL GOLD???"}
Of course me, being the homeschool mom, had to tell them they're painted rocks. They know all about Santa, the Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy, too. I'm such a party pooper. If it were my mom telling the story, they'd have glorious leprechauns and beautiful mining fairies dancing in their dreams instead... Ahh well...

Jamie and I have always wanted to take the kids to buy something yummy from the food trucks---but it's always so expensive. This day I splurged and spent $40 on corndogs. I'm not even kidding. That was one corndog per person. But they were yummy! We bought a bag of cotton candy too and the lady thought the kids were so sweet that she gave them a second bag for free!

Oh yeah, and we grabbed a bag of kettle corn too, which these two sillies are so proudly displaying.

On the way back down the mountain, we stopped at this bridge to get one more group photo. Cainan (blue t-shirt) once caught a fish here with Daddy when he was about two years old. 

It was a fun day full of special memories. I'm trying to get the kids out of town once a week while we're here. We're actually going back up to this area on Saturday---this time taking Grandma with us. I'll keep you posted!

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Hanging Out on the Oregon Trail

Good morning! Welcome to the Homemaking Party! The kids and I have had a few adventures here in Oregon this past week. Last Wednesday I took the six oldest and visited Heppner, the town I was born in. We had fun checking out places that are special to me. On the way home, we followed a sign to discover some Oregon Trail wagon ruts!

It was a gorgeous day for a long walk---slightly warm and breezy. {This picture is funny because, of all my boys, Elisha's the least "cowboy". Ha!}

The prairie grasses were taller than Avalon!

There were a couple signs set up to talk about the Oregon Trail in this area.

We're on the trail! Do you see the wagon ruts? 

It's funny how the way back seemed so much hotter than the way there. Ha! Water! I need water!

It was a special day. I'm glad we stopped!

Thanks for linking up with the Homemaking Party! I'm excited to see what you've got to share!

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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The Victorian Letter Writers Guild

Good morning! Welcome to the Homemaking Party!
Today I'm sharing my newest site with you, The Victorian Letter Writers Guild.  I know many of my readers, like me, are fascinated by the Victorian era. Their senses of modesty, decency, and order required them to live in a way many of us desire to emulate today. If you enjoy handwritten correspondence with like-minded people, The Victorian Letter Writers Guild may be for you!

Some of the subjects I feature on the blog include, 
  • Creative ideas for designing extra-special correspondence
  • Mail art techniques
  • Historical information regarding letter writing, Victorians, etiquette, and more
  • Quarterly pen friend exchanges
  • Writing-related swaps and giveaways

I'm currently hosting a Summer Pen Friend Exchange. If you'd like to be matched up with a pen pal handpicked for you, submit an application and I'll find a Guild member just right for you to correspond with. 

Also, be sure to check out my article on 5 Things I Didn't Know About Wax Seals.

Thanks for stopping by The Homemaking Party! I hope you're having a great week!

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