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A Quiet Christmas

Randy had unexpected retina surgery on the Monday before Christmas, resulting in a quiet Christmas here at the Bryant house. Jennie, Adam, Anna, Austin and Bill stopped by on Christmas Eve to wish him well and deliver a few Christmas goodies. Today Nickie will join them along with Bill’s children and David and Bob at Jennie’s home for a Christmas celebration. Randy will rest and recouperate at home. Before having surgery, we did sing a wonderful cantata at church.

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Our blog site has been moved to this new one by our hotmail account.  We’re not sure if we will keep it going here or will start to communicate through facebook only.   We will keep you posted.  Unfortunately, all of our pictures from previous entries were not able to be transfered. 

In Search of Fall Colors

We managed to clear a few days on our calendar for a get-away in search of autumn colors. Our journey took us to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, where we were rewarded with some spectacular views. Great Sand Bay on Lake Superior near Eagle Harbor is always fantastic – with or without color. The Seney wildlife reserve offered us geese and trumpeter swans to look at, among other things. Some areas were pretty despite being past peak, but Munising and Marquette provided peak color. Brockway Mountain in Keewenaw County is always breath taking, and there is a particularly lovely tree right in front of our house in Milwaukee we thought we’d show you.

We strolled the cemetery in Eagle Harbor, which tells some of the Bryant family history. Randy’s great grandfather, Edward, was killed in a mine accident at Central Mine in 1833, and is buried there. Other Bryants are laid to rest there as well. In the mining ghost town of Central, the original church (kept in wonderful shape) has a reunion the last Sunday of July that is attended by miners’ descendents from all over. We hope to be going there next summer. Included are photos of the 1907 reunion, as well as Edward and Jane’s home. The Keewenaw County Historic Society is restoring some of the old homes that are still standing in this community, including one that is dedicated to Jane Ivey Bryant, the widow of Edward.

A Trip to Silasville

We journeyed once again to the great Northwest to visit with Amber, Drew, and Silas in western Washington state.  We only get out there twice a year, so we spent every minute possible with Si and his parents.  In the photos below, Seattle and Mt. Ranier are seen from the ferry, and Silas is looking for crabs at a tide pool on Puget Sound.  Also on the sound is Bloedel Nature Reserve, where we spent a beautiful afternoon.  It includes a meditation garden, shown in one of the pictures.  That’s Si on the slide at the school’s playground, and picking "Jack-in-the-Beanstalk beans" in their yard to use in a bean dish.  They are growing pumpkins in the garden, too.  Silas,3, now sleeps in his own room, which is a great playroom as well. 

Mid-summer flowers

We thought, perhaps, you’d enjoy seeing some of the flowers that are in bloom in our garden right now.  We’ve had several flooding rains this summer so far, including 5 inches of it in our backyard overnight last night.  The flowers have come back nicely.  Warm weather and high humidity have produced some of the nicest blooms we’ve had in a long time. 

Overnight and Zoo

When Adam and Anna spent Friday night at our house, Anna drew a big chalk grandfather’s clock on the sidewalk in the back yard, Adam and Papa played catch (the ball is in mid-air), Anna blew bubbles, and we all walked around our neighborhood rummage sales.  On Saturday, we met Jen and Austin at the zoo, and saw pretty much of it, including the penguins, moose, and the giraffe using his tongue to pull the branch closer to him.  Then there was the dinosaur exhibit where we saw some REALLY old animals.
Jennie, Adam, Anna, and Austin came up to the lake cottage on Sunday, and stayed over into Memorial Day Monday, and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.  Adam found a toy helicopter that Uncle David had given him a while back, and had a lot of fun with that.  The rocking chair pictures were taken at a new ice cream parlor about 15 minutes from the cottage.

Out West, Part 2

While on our recent journey west, Papa and Silas made some music with water glasses filled to various levels, and Grandma helped Amber sew the drapes you see in one of the pictures below.  They hang in the dining room and living room.  One of Amber’s friends, Katya, whom we’ve gotten to know well over the years, poses with a Solomon’s Seal bush in her yard.  We also took a couple of days to re-visit the beautiful Columbia River Gorge, which separates Oregon and Washington.  Along the drive on the Oregon side were several waterfalls.  The one you see here is Multnomah Falls, a really neat place to be.  A walk up to the bridge is delightful.  
We visited Amber, Drew, and Silas at their new home in western Washington, where we could actually stay WITH them at their place for the first time.  Among other things, we enjoyed our playtime with Silas (he has his own playroom), seeing the spectacular rhodies and other spring flowers in bloom, and the great meals that Drew made for us.  The elementary school is a short distance away, and has a nice play area, including that long slide you see Silas on below.  The hat with the beaver on it used to be Amber’s when she was a little girl.  When we get a chance, we’ll post some more pictures of our trip.

Take Me Out to the Ballgame

We took Adam to his first Brewers game on Tuesday night.  Mary, Greg, Jason, and Jeanna Fischer went with us.  Jeanna had gotten the tickets from work.  Thanks, Jeanna!  In the pictures below, there are two of Randy Wolf (newly acquired from the Dodgers) – one of him batting (#43), and one of him pitching.  The other batting picture is of Ricky Weeks.  On the very next pitch after the photo was taken, he hit a homerun.  They shoot off fireworks after every Brewer homerun, and at the end of the game when they win.  Another shot shows the sausages getting ready for the nightly sausage race.
 
The Brewers won, and Adam really enjoyed it.  In fact, he was so much into it that we had to play some Wii baseball the next day.