Monday, October 6, 2008

labor day weekend + baker city

For Labor Day weekend, it is our new tradition to go to Baker City Oregon to visit Rustin and Suzi, and to have Jenny and Dana come out from Bend to meet us (by new tradition I mean this is the second year in a row that we've done it).

We always like visiting Baker City. It's an awesome little town with a beautiful historic Main Street. The farmers market is small and nice, and there's a huge park in the center of town. Rustin and Suzi live out by the golf course but also have ranch property with an old farmhouse they're in the middle of restoring.

Saturday we spent the day at the ranch, but poor Amy got sick early that morning. It was a nasty 24-hour flu-ish illness (or bad salsa fresca from TacoTime), and she was incapacitated for the whole day. She kept saying, "We have to go home," but I would just say, "Really?" and see how things went. So she stayed at the house when the rest of us went to the ranch. We hoped she would rest and let her body heal.

We saw all their animals: pygmy goats, sheep, chickens and cats. They had this rooster which was violent and territorial, and had attacked everyone in the family. So they chose to do away with him. I'm a baby and didn't want to watch. Rustin took him out with a .22, and then butchered him right there on the property. The kids watched it all. Though possibly disturbing, I thought it was a good lesson for the kids to learn--essentially where meat (chicken) comes from.


saddle up

sheep bottoms--if this doesn't scream wild wild west i don't know what does

the atv is always a ride

oey loves animals

deere john

poor rocky the rooster

the aftermath

playing cat and dog

That night the boys went to see Tropic Thunder while Amy was passed out and the other girls babysat. They ordered a monstrous pizza that fed everyone.

Amy finally felt better the next morning, and so our long-planned plan of going to Walla Walla still happened. We left in the late morning and took a beautiful backroads drive through the mountains to get there. We walked the little town (though it was shut down on Sunday) and all around Whitman College. What a beautiful campus. You should consider going there. We found fresh pears on the ground and walked part of a historic house tour. Seriously a gorgeous town and area.


part of a cool mural on a wall

playing at a park in downtown Walla Walla

enjoying at fountain at Whitman College

islander pose

delectable pear

one of the amazing southern-looking homes

We stayed at the historic Marcus-Whitman hotel. This was Suzi's idea and we love her for it. It was quite grand. The huge breakfast the next morning was also part of the deal (we overate). That night it was the guys' turn to babysit while the girls went out to eat. You guessed it--we ordered pizza and watched the Disney Channel. It was fairly hellish trying to squeeze three men and seven kids in one hotel room, so it didn't last long. We all split soon after the pizza was gone and put our own younguns to bed. Then Jarom and Bella saw Mikie on the Disney Channel. A surprise treat that left their mouths hinged, hanging open.

our grand hotel

On Labor Day we got up, said some goodbyes, drove the entire historic house tour (some amazing homes in that little town), then were on our way on I-84 back to Baker City. We stopped off at the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center there before leaving. We stayed a good hour. They had a small wagon train out front, with huge oxen and a fiddler and heavy winds blowing everything all over. We loved the displays, and it always makes you appreciate the pioneer life to think of the hardships they had to deal with. Kind of like our 8 hour drive home from Baker.

We can't wait to come back!

our only breakfast picture, but it was tasty

bidding farewell

wagon camp and leftover pizza


the ox family

so happy to be there

sibling love

watching one of the mini-documentaries

Our late night dinner (by late I mean about 10 pm) at IHOP in Twin Falls. The kids got funny face pancakes that they got to decorate.


Glory Watts said...

What a great family tradition! I've always wanted to see where Rustin and Suzi live. So sorry you were sick Amy,to have the stomach flu while on vacation is the worst.

My favorite picture is the one of you holding Oey. He is looking at you with the cutest expression, it made me laugh.
love ya!

Heidi Daniels said...

you guys were o close, yet so far away from us! Walla Walla is like 4passes over, about a 6 hour drive or so. That side of WA has alot of universitys and all of them are very old and well maintained.

And for some reason, I'm not too shocked that the little rooster got taken out by Rustin. Some of those little critters are so mean!

Momma said...

What a glorious tradition, you guys rock my mind every time I read about one of your adventures. I love seeing all the pictures and keeping up with my precious little family by the internet. I feel closer to you that way and a part of your lives! You always are on the go and doing wonderful, fabulous trips, outing, hikes, climbs, etc. You are the bestest parents and family in the world, I love you all so much, Nana

Adie B said...

Amy, Matt. Looking at these pictures made me want to cry. I think I have PMS. One of the reasons I felt so emotional is the fact that I am intricately connected to the Smith family for the rest of my life! I thank you for that, Mister Matt B. Well, and Amy. Glad you kids liked each other so much. I'll never forget Matt in the kitchen at Roosevelt Street with me, I must have been about 25-26, and going over EVERY single detail about knowing Amy since the first time you saw her. I remember telling you something like if you want anything enough, you can have it. And yet I was scared, hoping Amy liked you back too. But the things you told me seemed like uncanny destiny. Like her spotting you in Seminary, maybe sending a note or something? Anyhoo, it's totally out of a novel, the way the spotlight just fell on Amy for you all your teenagehood, Matty. And now, i get to see Rowan grow up, and know Dana and Jenny and see Rustin's kids, and obviously, have the joy of seeing my own nephews and nieces look like Smith-Beattys. Both such strong traits.
I love it. And now I get to be Aunt Addie (I hope) to hundreds of other I hope to someday attend some Smith events too. I just hope we get to live near you in the future, and Jenny, and Rustin.

I loved going to the Smith house when I was a teenager. So many beauties, all in one household. And I loved tricking Rustin and friends on a 4th of July camping trip once.....the memories.

I am so lucky to be a part.

heather said...

this looks so fun and i am absolutely in love with pygmy goats! jarom riding one makes my world complete. i can't believe the kids watched a rooster get killed...wonder how he did it? anyway i love the ranch and all the adventures you guys had all weekend...sorry you were sick amy but i'm glad you at least got to enjoy half the trip. what a great bunch of people, addie is so right, how lucky we beattys are to get to be joined with the smiths forever!

Debbie said...

What a fun family you are. So many great traditions!