Tuesday, April 10, 2007

A little get-away

When I see school vacations looming on the calendar, I tend to panic: what am I going to do with Ross? But then I start scheduling activities, and the vacation becomes very full, very fast! He had school friends over Tuesday and Wednesday. On Thursday, we went to the MAC (the local art and history museum), where I was staffing a booth for their spring break kids' fair. And on Friday, we headed out of town on a little adventure.

We headed west to Grand Coulee Dam, which is about 90 miles from Spokane. We drove through lots of wheat farms along US 2. When we got to the dam, we checked out the visitors' center, where they had some fairly sophisticated, interactive exhibits. Here's Ross in front of the dam (with Flat Cris):



Then we drove around the area, looking for a hotel. We found a nice one in Electric City (yup, that really is the name of the town), right on Banks Lake -- guests were fishing out of the backyard! We relaxed and enjoyed the view for a while (and Chris checked out the Masters) before heading out to dinner.

In the evening, Chris and Ross played Battleship (Ross's new favorite game). I took the opportunity to sketch the scene from our balcony. I certainly don't draw much, but I've been thinking that I ought to try more often. I just read a book by Danny Gregory (Everyday Matters: A Memoir), who discovered that drawing helps him be more present in the moment, and to really see what is in front of him. He does these lovely, quirky ink drawings of anything -- his kid's fire truck, his medicine cabinet, street scenes. I am inspired by his work. What do I have to lose? It doesn't matter if my drawing is "good" -- it just matters that I want to draw and that I do it.

The next day, we headed south along Banks Lake, looking for a hiking trail. There are a couple of state parks and national forest in the area. We found a fun, quiet trail along the bottom of a canyon, where a fruit orchard used to be. The weather was nice and there were hardly any people around -- perfect! The highlight for Ross was scrambling up a fairly steep rock section off the trail. He found out that it's easier to get up than to come down, but he did just fine. Here are Ross and Chris resting at the halfway point of the hike:



After the long hike, we were all beat, and happily headed back to Spokane.

Easter was nice. Ross and I went to church, then Chris hid the eggs that his folks had sent for Ross, and Ross found them.



Then we went to a brunch that one of Chris's co-workers has every year -- a yummy potluck affair. It was nice to head home and relax with a full stomach, after a busy week!

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