Sunday, July 30, 2006

Visiting Saint Laurent Winery

This morning we took Connie & Bill for a drive up to the Saint Laurent winery on Hamlin Road, about a mile above the Three Lakes Golf Course.

We went specifically to walk through the gardens, not to partake in the wine tasting. It's absolutely worth a special trip just to stroll through the gardens and gawk at the view of the entire Valley and the Columbia River below. Click on the winery link and you can see more pictures, learn more about their history and keep current with the various events they host up there. It's a pretty cool place.

As with our trip to England, I was fascinated by the (no mortor) rock walls that were everywhere. I'd love to know who constructed them. It's very labor intensive and definitely an art form! Click to enlarge photo.

On the return trip, we continued up over Stemilt Hill, where there are still some unpicked bing cherries hanging on the trees. Then we came down the Stemilt Creek Road to the Malaga/Alcoa Highway and on home.

Believe it or not, this picture at the lower left is the restroom building!

Be sure to click the smaller images to enlarge, so you can get the quality in the details.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Strolling Through Leavenworth

Click on photos to enlarge:

This afternoon Max & I and Connie & Bill went to Leavenworth for an early dinner. We left about 3:00 to beat the Friday night crowds. It's been so hot in Wenatchee, we thought it would be a little cooler up there. It was a little cooler, with a slight breeze and quite pleasant in the shade. We had dinner at a very small place called PAVZ on Front Street.

PAVZ had a fairly diverse menu, with crepes being their apparent specialty. Max had their seafood crepe, which was a generous serving and very very tasty. I know this because I snictched a couple of bites. I had the clam chowder, a salad and some fresh bread. Connie had the spinach and chicken crepe and Bill had the Caesar salad with blackened salmon. Prices were reasonable.

Leavenworth is always a fun short trip, which we often take when company is in town. It's fun to stroll the streets and select a place to eat. Also, they have scads of hanging baskets and barrels full of (mostly) petunias. You can even take a leisurely stroll about town in the horse drawn carriage.

After dinner we strolled around Leavenworth for a bit then stopped at a couple of fruit stands on our way back home. We were specifically looking for fresh cherries. Prey's fruit stand cherries looked a little dehydrated, so we drove onto Smallwood's Fruit Stand near Peshastin, where their catch phrase is "Farm Fun In The Country Sun"... and we found some excellent Bing cherries.

Also, this big fat turkey was wandering around the fruit stand at Smallwoods. I had never seen a real (live) turkey up this close. Smallwood's also has a full fledged petting zoo for the kids and this little train decorated like cows that a tractor pulls around the area. They go all out to decorate the area for the various seasons. If you're traveling and have kids with you, it's a great place to stop for a little entertainment... and a good selection of quality fruits, too!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

View From The Old Homestead Farm

Here is a view from the gate of the old farm where Max grew up. The road stretching into the distance is the road Max (woefully) recalls walking two miles to school as a child. Of course, sometimes they rode their old horse Nap (nickname for Napoleon). I don't suppose Max appreciated the fabulous view as a child.

The picture to the right is Max and his sister Connie, with the old farm in the background. Of course, the modern buildings, equipment and grain silos weren't there in the early days.

The farm is now owned and operated by a nephew, Reece Bevans. Reece is one of the sons of Max's oldest sister (Wilda who is now deceased). To the lower left are some big hay bails that Reece had ready to unload from the tractor. They bail hay in huge circular bails these days instead of those smaller rectangular bails. Guess they can't be manhandled like the olden days. I have no idea how much these bails would weigh. Reece wasn't around to ask.

An hour in Waterton, Alberta

Through the trees you can see the tour boat on the lake at the town of Waterton in southern Alberta about 25 miles from the town of Cardston where Max grew up. Click on that blue Waterton icon above and it will take you to a photo gallery of the area.

We didn't spend a lot of time in Waterton because we really only had one free day before heading back home. We bought an ice cream cone, toured around the town a bit then headed back to Cardston.

Wild Animals In Canada

Here are some of the wild animals we saw on the trip. They were all right along the roadway. The first photo is taken somewhere on the road between Cranbrook, BC and up to Crowsnest Pass on Saturday, July 15th. The second photo (on the right) was taken in Glacier national Park on Monday, July 17th. They were, literally, right along the side of the road and not at all afraid of the tourists. You can click on either image to enlarge.

Max in Glacier National Park

Here is a picture of Max in Glacier National Park, on our way through Logan Pass. This is such a beautiful park, but pictures just cannot do justice. I am fascinated by the narrow, windy, road they have going through the park. It must be a full time job maintaining the road to keep the mass of traffic moving through. Big rigs such as RV's and trucks cannot use this road. The lanes are just too narrow, with rock outcroppings coming right to the edge of the lane in some places. The road is, literally, built into the rock cliffs in places.

A Trip To Cardston, Alberta

Pictured (left to right): Connie, Max, Elinor
Taken at Waterton Park on Sunday afternoon. What does everyone have in their hands? An ice cream cone. Yum!

Last Friday (14th) we took off for Cardston, Alberta to attend the 80th birthday party for Max's sister, Elinor. It was a hectic work week for me getting ready because I had a golf event Thursday (in Chelan) and Friday (in Leavenworth). So I had to get over a week's worth of work done in 3 days.

After golfing in the July team event in Leavenworth, I scurried home... threw the suitcases in the car (already packed) and we headed to Sandpoint, Idaho. I knew we needed to get to Sandpoint Friday night so we would have time to get to Cardston, Alberta by 4:00 in the afternoon Saturday for the birthday party. As it turned out, we arrived in Cardston about 3:30, checked in to our motel and scooted down to the campground where the birthday gathering was.
Max's sister, Connie, and her husband, Bill, have had their 40 foot motorhome parked at Lee's Creek campground in Cardston for the last month. This is where the birthday party was held. The weather was perfect and the mosquitos stayed away, which was one of my greatest concerns. Sad to say, I fear mosquitos more than all those crazy drivers on the road getting to our destinations! I'm sure if there were a million people in a crowd and one mosquito it would find me and only me. Anyway... that wasn't a problem this trip. I think the town has sprayed to keep the mosquito population down.

At the birthday gathering, we saw many nieces and nephews that we have not seen in many years. You know time is marching on when the nieces and nephews have grandkids! These gatherings are a good way to see a lot of people in a short period of time, so we enjoyed it.

We drove up through Cranbrook, BC and over Crowsnest Pass... then home through Glacier National Park and over Logan Pass. It's the short cut... but oh so slow. Such a narrow and winding road but the beauty is spectacular. I took a few pictures but they never do the reality justice! I'll post a few more pictures in another blog entry.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

The New Courtyard

Jeff is proud of his work... and Max is enjoying the results! (Click on any image to enlarge).

Jeff did most of the prep work when he was here last week, but he laid ALL of the pavers in one day. He started about 8:00 this morning and finished about 5:00. He only stopped for a couple of short breaks.

Jeff is a one of those guys who can do just about anything having to do with home construction or remodeling. He had never actually done a paver job before, but has seen it done enough that he figured it all out. We came out nearly perfect with our pavers... having to go back to Lowes to get only 4 more stones. We didn't want a bunch left over to return, so calculated pretty close. Can't get much closer than that.

We're looking forward to some nice summer and Fall evening in the courtyard!


The Courtyard Project

I'm so pleased, we're finally getting our courtyard paving stones layed. This has been a project I've wanted to do (I mean have done) since moving here... but always got put on the back burner. We never got around to picking out stones or finding someone who would bid on and actually do the job. All the local sub-contractors are so busy these days with all the new construction going on they don't want to mess with such a tiny project. This worked out great for Jeff to do it for us.

Jeff came back and will spend the next couple of days getting the job done. The pavers were delivered this morning on a pallet from Lowes. The forklift driver did a masterful job of getting the pallet into our carport within a few feet of the courtyard... very convenient for the job.

Above, Max was "pretending" to help Jeff AND here's Jeff actually doing ALL of the work! Max & I have both discovered our calling is in Management. We are great supervisors, but not much for the physical labor!

Will post more pictures when the project is complete.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Max & The Reading Coyote

Following breakfast this morning, Max & I took a drive around town to take some pictures of a few of the cool buildings and some of the Art-on-the-Avenues statues.

Here is Max and our local reading Coyote. This statue, entitled "Coyote reading a candy wrapper", sits on the steps of the Museum Annex building. Personally, I like to think he's reading the fine print on a Purchase & Sale Agreement for the cute little brick bungalow we just looked at.

For more about the Art-on-the-Avenues project check out my other blog.

If you go to the other blog, scroll down and you will see some more of the statues... and I will be posting more as time goes by. Because many of my prospective real estate clients are from out of the area, I'm trying to post information and pictures that would be of interest to people that do not live in Wenatchee. So, although it is a real estate blog, I post general news, info and pictures of the area


Saturday, July 08, 2006

The Surprise(s)

O.K... here's the "surprise" I mentioned in the last post. Jeff built a really nice fence / handrail for around my office door. This is not a kit. He built it. You can't really see it from this picture, but this isn't just one section. There is another section running from the right end of this piece to the house. It's very attractive and a lot safer for people coming and going from my office. Eventually, when the courtyard is finished, the table and chairs will be moved making an easier entrance and exit.

Also, here's a picture of the birdhouses. Aren't they just the cutest thing you've ever seen? -Carol

Gig Harbor

I went to Gig Harbor, Washington for two days of special training (Thursday and Friday) with Liberty First Services. I'll tell you more about that later.

After our session on Thursday Bill Lange, the President of the company, bought us appetizers and drinks at "Anthony's" at the harbor. During the two days, I didn't have much time for picture taking, but here is one of the harbor pictures I was able to take on Thursday evening.

While I was away Max's son, Jeff, came over from Renton and stayed with him. Jeff is always nice to have around because he is the best handyman in the world. He's a finish carpenter by trade, but he can actually do just about anything. I had a big list of things for him to do while I was gone, which he gladly accepted. But, when I was talking to him on the phone Thursday night he said he had a surprise for me, in addition to the regular stuff.

He mowed the lawn and put up three substantial handrail bars in our bedroom, bathroom, and shower for Max. He also prepared the area by the front door in preparation to lay some paving stones to create a small courtyard area. He also installed three birdhouses on some tree posts I had Max cut higher than usual.

The "surprise" to follow. :-)

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Second Wave of Roses

I've been doing a diligent job of keeping the roses trimmed properly and we're moving into a second wave of buds that we will be enjoying soon.

The hot weather we've been having will bring them on fast! Couldn't resist posting this trio I took a couple days ago.