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During the vacation trip, we made notes when the kids (usually Brock) said funny things.  So to (maybe) close out the vacation posts, here are some of the ‘Brockisms’ from the trip (along with some Brock pictures)…

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King Brock

Heard a while after Lori reviewed cabins and rewarded the kids with a   dollar each . . . “give me a piece of gum, I have a dollar”

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Playground Brock

Heard at the campfire, “I want to burn a marshmallow”

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Jail Brock

At the OMSI Omnimax show, while waiting through the previews, “is there a remote?”

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Gargoyle Brock

In the yurt one morning, Davison and Brock were playing hide & seek with some stuffed animals.  Davison: ‘Hide, Mom is coming’
Brock: ‘Are Moms bad?’
Davison: ‘No, Moms are good; they work for us.’

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Motorcycle Brock

And that is it.  Thanks for letting us share our experiences and family memories.

Just this side of the border (south of Cranbrook) runs the Moyie river. We don’t always stop there (there’s a nice provincial park), but did on this trip.  It turned out that the park was closing for the winter less than a day later.

I have video footage from years ago of Layne and Rett at this spot on the river throwing rocks, which is what we did on this stop also.

Some pictures from the stop:

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We ended up getting home from vacation on Saturday night at 10:30 pm, a pretty tired crew.

A few months ago, Brock was terrified of hot air hand dryers.  If one turned on in the near viciniity (as in, somewhere in the same bathroom) he freaked out.

At the start of this recent vacation we stayed at a campground with hot air dryers on the bathroom.  Brock wasn’t nearly so frightened, but he did make a beeline out the door when I started drying my hands.

By our second campground stint, something had changed (probably that something called ‘growing up’) and Brock now fully endorsed hot air hand drying, particularly when he could make funny faces in the reflective parts of that dryer.

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Brock dries his hands

A minor step taken in the grand adventure of life.

On Friday we worked hard packing up to get on the road home. Once all was packed and everyone hopped in, the van wouldn’t start, which led to…

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…a tow into Newberg.  Diagnosis: failed fuel pump.

5:30 pm update: the van is fixed and ready to go. This was very good news indeed as the repair place closed at 6:00 pm and didn’t re-open until Monday, so we faced the prospect of a couple of days delay. On the other hand, this will mean a really late night tonight getting to Spokane, but it looks like we are off and running.

2:30 am update: arriving at the hotel in Spokane Valley. Live wire little boys (having slept for a few hours) are about to jump into the big jacuzzi tub.

In retrospect…
Kudos to the family for getting us ready to go by a little after 11:00 am. A checkout close to the 1:00 deadline would not have allowed enough time for repairs. The park Ranger commended the family on working together – and for using little kids as pack mules.

Major kudos to Keith and the mechanics at Tyler’s Auto Repair, who turned the van around in less than 4 hours.

Looking back on the day, I believe that our Father in Heaven was taking very good care of us. His timing was perfect.

As part of our Salem trip on Thursday, we wanted to visit the Riverfront Carousel.  I checked the website and it was still on summer hours so was open until 7:00 pm.  When the discovery village (see prior post) closed at 5:00 pm, we headed to the carousel, about a quarter of a mile away.

When we got there, alas, it had closed at 5:00 pm for a private function.  I expressed (politely, I hope – sadly I don’t always handle these setback things well) my frustration to the worker telling us it was closed, indicating that the website had said it would be open until 7:00.  He asked if we would be able to come back the next day.  Unfortunately, no as we were heading home to Canada on Friday morning.  So he told us to go in and tell the worker running the carousel that ‘Joe said we could have a short ride for free’.

Vic, the volunteer running the carousel, asked us to wait for a couple of minutes – and then included us with the paid event – as they were not counting how many rides were taken or anything.  At the end of the ride, he asked if the kids wanted to stay on for another free ride, so we happily took him up on it, the kids all changed horses and we went around again for a while longer.

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So, a wonderful time was had by all – and many thanks to Joe and Vic for allowing us to experience the Salem Carousel.

Thursday, our last full vacation day (prior to hitting the road homeward), we went to the A.C. Gilbert Childrens Discovery Village in Salem.  We got in free with our science center memberships.  It was geared to younger kids, so Danaya and Daelynn spent the day with Grandma Dana instead.  Here are some pictures of our time there.

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Mikaela in the Inventors Workshop
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Davison at the outdoor chess set
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Heidi recepts at the vet clinic
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Brock scans in groceries
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Brock at the playground
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Doctor Brock examines a fox

On Wednesday, we teamed up with Grandpa Ron for another activity day at OMSI (the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry). 

This time we packed a lunch, which was good because the cafeteria was closed for renovations.  There were a couple of exhibits closed and being switched out, but there was still plenty to do in all sorts of areas including the chemistry lab and the science playground.  Here are a bunch more pictures…

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Davison and the harbor crane
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Dad builds a caffeine molecule
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Davidson and Mikaela do an experiment
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Heidi makes a mega molecule
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The girls in the chemistry lab
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Davison and Grandpa Ron at a water table
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Daelynn in the turbine hall

On Monday, at Champoeg park, it was really hot and the yurt area was deserted except for us.  It was mid-afternoon water fight time.  Each person changed into water fight clothes (we want to do this in an orderly way, after all) and was allocated a standard size plastic cup.  There was a water tap at each of the yurts, so water was in plentiful supply.

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Dad gets really wet
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Congestion at the water tap
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Lookout, it's Davison
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Lori with Daelynn in hot pursuit

Given the heat, it was a wonderful way to cool down.  It being a pretty much windless day, we also had fun with the foxtail ball and the speedminton set as well.

We’re on the last major stage of vacation 2012, and we are back at Champoeg state park.  This time we are staying in two yurts which are a little more primitive than the cabins we stayed in here a couple of weeks back.  They don’t have an outside light, so we ended up cooking the tail end of supper on the dark.  Each yurt also only has one plugin.  Good thing we have two power bars in the van of plenty.

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The pair of yurts

The four girls are in one yurt and Lori and I are sharing the other with Brock and Davison.

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The move-in cart

Behind the yurts is a solid wall of blackberry bushes, with quite a lot of accessible, ripe berries.  I had a bunch of freshly picked berries on my muesli this morning.

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And here is a picture of Brock playing with his cars by the yurt.

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Brock, cars

One of the trip hi-lights for Davison was being able to spend a couple of says with his cousin Ian.  Ian is the son of Lori’s sister Aimee. Aimee’s family and friends are still grieving her loss last year to cancer.

Here are some pictures from Friday, Saturday, and Sunday

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At the beach at Devils Lake
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Heidi on the balance beam
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Saturday breakfast
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The play structure at the vacation house
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The sandbox at the vacation home
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Wobbly train at the playground
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Regatta Park playground

And a final picture from Regatta Park (where the really fun playground and the Devils Lake beach were located), the very unique sculpture at the entrance of a whimsical dragon, made out of metal and rubber.

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The dragon statue