Sunday, June 25, 2017

June: Graduations and Grade Reports

We wrapped up May (full of birthdays) by enjoying spring flowers and rhubarb pie, but with weather that kept some wrapped up.
With June's arrival, we now have a high schooler in the house, and a middle school mover and shaker.
When school let out, we headed south for Monterey, CA.
 The DMP and the pedal boats were on the desired list.
 We drove the 17 mile Pebble Beach Drive with intermittent stops.
While the Monterey Peninsula can be quite expensive, it doesn't have to be for the budget minded. We skipped the aquarium and counted 21 seals in the bay as well as many otters, explored the sandy spaces, little cove caves, and hung around in Carmel for an afternoon.

We stayed at the Monterey Hostel in a brand new private room with private bath (which sleeps 5 in a queen, twin, and bunk bed) and enjoyed the lovely common rooms and access to a kitchen. The hostel was only two blocks from Cannery Row.

In Carmel, we splurged for lunch at Forge in the Forest and it was pretty good, even if quite warm in the garden. If we ever go back, I think I'd try the Tuck Box.
Then we wandered Point Lobos State Park for a few hours before heading south to Cambria, CA and CalPoly (in San Louis Obispo) for a much anticipated graduation.
We are so proud of him and excited to watch what he's up to at a space propulsion company in CA.

 It was absolutely great to experience this campus, and hang out with family in Cambria.

It was a fast five days, but we hung with some super cool people!

We also had our first In-N-Out Burger experience. Love how cheaply one can feed a family and the food was tasty!

As June heats up, we are still learning and trying to stay cool. She's participating in a Learn to Row weekend with her father. She's slowly, this spring, been moving from the coxswain's seat to a rower's seat. I spend my time praying about the river, and reminding myself not to let fear dictate decisions and experiences.

Brother and I spent yesterday helping the LBCC Space Exploration Club launch one of their solar eclipse payload balloons, and then we all took in a Timbers U23 game in Salem. The ticket prices are super!

They both have camps this week. He on circuit boards and she on smart cars and robotics. I'm enrolled in an educators drone training class. Here's to keeping up with summer!


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

May: When Lilacs Bloom

We're still here. 
Had visitors this month - an unexpected charming handful!
 I am so often easy to please - in the driver's seat. 
Safe Families for Children remind me of my need to trust and let go.
Let go, and let God. 
 That Asher: he's a handful of happiness. 
 Then there's happy, delicious, which Miss C baked, and we ate!
 He's been busy on Grandpa provided projects,
 and many many hours of spring soccer. 
 For someone's 12th birthday we had red-neck sushi.
It's a deep fried tempura battered pork roll with sweet sauce.
 He acquired his ham radio license!
 Yes, that cake was dry; it was.
Can't win em' all. 
The hat - it's a birthday must. 

She spent much of her spring building a Mars Axel. The Axel is the next generation rover to go to Mars. She also wrote a 7 page paper and did an amazing slide show presentation. So proud of her hard work.

It's May and a bit of warmth embraces us. The rains still fall, but the garden is tilled and ready to go. I will plunk plants in ground this weekend. She's intent on summer blooms.

We are working to finish school and STEM work strong and keep engaging with Safe Families. Don't know where my writing has gone, but searching for it this summer. 

We also enjoyed these this winter:McFarland, USA, Hidden Figures, and The Queen of Katwe.

Here's to a summer of learning and loving!

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Spring's Arrival

Sitting smart in the Governor's chair.
In March, she was a page in the House of Representatives. 
She's pondering paging in the Senate next.
She learned a lot and had fun.
I eavesdropped on Senators and Representatives in the cafeteria. 
A few conversations were deep, engaging, and involved.
A few were...hmmm....disappointing. 
Let us get involved...
we the people.
   We got out of dodge for a few days over spring break.
Bunkering at Fort Worden

 Dosewallips State Park

The Olympics rising above Dosewallips.
Fort Worden
   He made a friend in camp, which ironically, was the son of a man who attended the MATE ROV class we attended in January. They had a blast. They both, of course, did not pack enough clothing for the amount of water, sand, and salt they dredged up, and both their mothers were chagrined.

   He too, is having a busy spring. He had a band concert, but I forgot my camera. It's amazing what a few months of band practice can do!

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Almost Spring & Still the Snow

 It's been a cold winter, and the forecast says it's not over yet.

We've been busy playing and learning.

 We boarded the NOAA Ship Rainier in Newport - that was cool!

We still have this squirrelly beast, and we added this one.
 Welcome, Asher. 
He is as sweet as pie and FFA compatible!
 Times are changing. The fire truck bunk bed got taken down.
The entire corner is now a full blown maker space.

We'll be back soon with the spring blooms!

Thursday, January 12, 2017

MATE ROV: Marine Advanced Technology Education w/ Remotely Operated Vehicles

Because even adults can learn a thing or two! 
A Saturday workshop at the Barbey Center in Astoria. 
The Pufferfish Kit from MATE ROV 
We had some buoyancy/balance issues, but for building and constructing in under 90 minutes, we felt pretty good.  
I soldered the entire circuit board. I am very proud of myself!

If underwater marine robotics is of interest to your students or you, check out:
   I like MATE ROV for a couple of reasons: one, it seems less intense than Lego (and I do like FLL Lego Robotics)!  Second, it does not start at the beginning of the school season like FLL, but starts in December which makes the start to your school year a bit less intense. Third, registration is a bit cheaper if you are in the 3 least experienced tiers. You register your team for the tier you feel they are ready for: beginner, beginner/intermediate, advanced, and expert. Fourth, students on teams must vote their team mates into positions i.e., you have to work your way into that position with intention. Fifth, the kits for underwater robotics are cheaper and teams are encouraged to do as much as possible with what they have on hand and with renewable items. Finally, the future of underwater robotics off the Oregon coast and for development is huge and interesting to many and will create great opportunities for many students. 

 Teachers: you can now sign up your class for one of these Pufferfish workshops at the Columbia Maritime Museum in Astoria.  Homeschoolers, you too, can get a group of students together and take this class.

What is required of future marine electronics in the world of energy?

1. They must generate enough energy to have their cost justifiable.
2. They must withstand extreme ocean conditions for years and years.

   Did you know that the Pacific Continental Shelf has enough wave energy to supply 1/3rd of the United State's energy needs?