Monday, June 30, 2008

Cove Palisades.....

The past few days have found me camping with the youth group at Cove Palisades. Doing things with the youth is always a fun time for me. I love their infectious energy and I also love knowing that the things we do together is helping to shape their lives for the good.

I am super tired now and just got up from 10 hours of sleeping (I think I could use even more) but the weekend was well worth it. I believe it is so important to be actively involved in the lives of our kids. Now that our girls are ages 14 and almost 17, I keep thinking that I only have a few precious years left before they are off doing their own grown up things.

Our days were filled with romping in the swim waters and inner tubing behind the boat. As much as we tried to keep sunscreen on, the high desert conditions gave everyone a sunburn. Being crispy didn't stop them though from having all the fun humanly possible. I love everyone in our group. All of the youth and the leaders have such a fun loving outlook on things. Everyone is eager to help and though there are many differences in the people, compassion abounds. There was a constant supply of laughter, smiles, and practical jokes.

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I heard that the waters of the river were wonderfully cool but I never found out personally. I spent my time trying to keep under the shade. It was a good 100 or so degrees while we were there. Though I do believe that sunny days are beautiful, I am not a sun worshipper at all. Five minutes of standing out in the sun's rays finds my skin starting to sizzle. The heat is also hard for me to deal with. Any temperature over 85 (and that is pushing it) makes me really have to concentrate on a) not being grumpy and snappy b) thinking in a coherent manner and functioning in basic tasks.

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My tasks were to be nurse and cook for the 21 people in attendance. It was a lot of fun. Lunches and dinners were a "piece of cake" with making sandwiches and grilling burgers and hot dogs. Breakfasts is what really took planning and a bit more time. My hubby came this year and was a huge help to me. We did pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausages, and fruit one morning and Canadian bacon cheese and egg English muffins on another day. We had experimented before the trip and figured out that by taking the metal bands from wide mouth canning lids we could cook the eggs in them and have the perfect shape to fit on an English muffin.

Nursing on the other hand, I failed. One young man received a good gash on his hand as we were unpacking the first night. Though it wasn't deep, it was directly on his knuckle, making it very hard to treat. I was tired after driving 3 hours, grumpy, and feeling a bit overwhelmed because the first aid kit that I had grabbed for the trip had been pilfered through and most of my basic supplies were missing. All I could think of was driving back to town and sitting in an ER for stitches, while the other side of my mind knew that I had all these people that still needed me to make dinner for them. Yuck! Thank God for the park ranger. She found an impressive knuckle bandage in her supplies and jimmy rigged a splint out of broken plastic utensils to keep his finger immobile. I thought about being mad at myself for not thinking of that but then decided it wasn't worth the energy and I was just grateful for the help.

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Over the weekend I became even more a firm believer in knowing how much I love living west of the Cascade range. Oregon has so much diversity in climate and it is all amazing but I sure missed having green around me. I did enjoy my morning walks know before it got hot. If we camp over that way again next year I will have to keep in mind that being out walking between 5am and 8am is a great time to explore and enjoy the world without the heat and sun fogging my mental processes.

On one of my walks I stumbled across an area with a tourist plaque that said it had been re-created to resemble ancient Indian grounds. This rock with real petroglyphs had been placed in the area to accent the ancient history. I didn't see anything that talked about what the writings and pictures meant and I know it was placed there on purpose, but it still felt like a secret find for me.

I am grateful that it was a wonderful weekend. I am grateful for shade and cold water bottles. I
am grateful for happy memories.


(David at Authorblog enjoyed reading about our trip and gave a mention in his recommendations for post of the day. Thank you David.)


  1. Rest. You earned your exhaustion. I'm glad you had a good time!

    One way to keep your brain prcessing in the heat is to make certain yu are adequately hydrated with water, not tea or soda, or coffee, water.

  2. Quilly, thank you. You are right. Water is a must. I am a big water drinker and had at least 6 bottles a day.

  3. glad you ad a good time.
    water works for me, too, either to drink or to swim in :)
    i don't mind te heat so much but humidity gets the bette of me... and we often get humid heat in the summer

  4. WAY too cold for camping here, Jules!

  5. Polona...that humidity can sure make things rough. It makes the air so heavy. Thankfully, in the high desert it is a dry heat so we didn't have to deal with that.
    Here in the Portland area, there is always humidity. I am not sure but I think we are at about 80% right now.

    David...yes it is too cold for you right now to camp. I was just thinking about you grilling those pork chops in weather did you say it? Something about it being more frigid than the winds rolling off of Mt Everest. You are so funny.

  6. It sounds like an amazing camping trip, and well done for managing to feed that many people and coming out the other end sane!!

  7. mima...thank you. It was a fun time. The feeding all the people, I just kept reminding myself "they are teenagers. I don't need to do anything gourmet or special becaue they love easy stuff."
    To me the most complicated thing was making the shopping list.


I love to hear from other. Your opinions and viewpoints are always a blessing and encourage other readers as well.