Monday, August 19, 2013

Summer Photo Dump series... #6

The Hot Air Balloons

One fine evening after dinner, I glanced out the back window, and I saw this beautiful spectacle!  Hot air balloons gliding toward us... the silence of their flight occasionally punctuated by noisy blasts from the burners and bawling from the agitated cattle below, who were scrambling wildly to escape the shadows of these mysterious airborne beasts!

So pretty as they drift towards our house!

Several families in boats pulled up to watch.

 This one just kept coming closer...

...and closer!

The pilot yelled out, "Is it okay to land here?"  It was.

 His Re/Max buddy joined him a few minutes later.

 The kids got there on their bikes and our 4x4 just in time for landing number two.

It was pretty awesome.  :)

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Summer Photo Dump series... #5

Camping at Mahoney State Park

Our home away from home... the tent.

While Tom and I were putting up the tent, the littles confidently
 proclaimed they would make a fire with sticks.

They were successful.  (No, those cigarette butts aren't ours.)

They enjoyed cooking on their (enhanced) fire later.

We hiked up to the observation tower.
  You can just see Ashland on the horizon.

This nearby tree just cried out to be climbed on.

 We hiked through the woods and pretended we were using our survival skills.

Later, our travels took us through a beautiful botanical garden.

The prairie areas had beautiful wildflowers like these coneflowers...

... and all of these other colorful beauties!

Can it really be camping without miniature golf?

That was fun... on to the next activity!

Trail riding!

Excited first time riders!

 Finally, here come the horses...

 ...and away we go!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Summer Photo Dump series... #4

The Puppy

So, we got this really cute little Boston Terrier puppy named Belinda.  She is joining our other two Bostons and three cats.  And that's all I have to say about that.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Summer Photo Dump series... #3

Ashland Stir-Up Days

Every July, our town has a festival called "Stir-Up Days".  There are lots of activities surrounding the event throughout the weekend.  There are numerous "feeds" for lunch, breakfast and dinner; a street dance for grown-ups, a pool party for teens, a car show, an art show, carnival games, eating contests etc., etc.... our favorite event is the Stir-Up Days parade.

Thomas waiting downtown for the parade to appear.

Right after the opening color guards come the fire trucks!

Sarah was one of the many little girls performing their cheer/dance camp routine at the parade along with the
 Ashland-Greenwood High School Spirit Squad.

Candace and Sarah after their parade performance.

Here come the antique tractors!

Nicely groomed alpacas... why the heck not?


Crop sprayer... it's a rural area.

Heavy construction equipment...
 Anna's friend's dad owns this business.  :)

No parade is complete without Shriners in antique cars...

or Shriners in tiny cars...

 or Shriners in go-karts...

 or Shriners on tandem bicycles.

For a nice quiet activity, we enjoyed the art show at Saint Stephen's... Nebraska's oldest church building.  Alas, it no longer has a congregation and is maintained by the Historical Society.

The kids created sidewalk art at St. Stephen's.

 Candace creating her masterpiece.

 Technically not a part of Stir-Up Days, but Thomas did take swimming lessons all week.  He's a natural.