July was a normal summer month. I was quite excited that the kids took more interest in the motorcycle. Previously they wanted nothing to do with it. This month, the both sat on it and fought over who got to be in front. They still wanted nothing to do with it running and the noise, but that’s cool!
Jenny from next door came over and did up Danelle’s hair. After Jenny was done, I felt like I got my own night with Jennifer Aniston! I liked that hair.
Danelle and I went to the annual Stream Team picnic held at Meramec State Park. Its always held on the last Saturday in July. This year, the temperature was quite warm. Danelle’s parents were worried about the kids with the excessive heat, so they kept the kids at their house. Danelle and I were just a couple heading to a party. We were looking forward to hanging out in the heat. Danelle was slightly worried that I was going to be bored in the morning. The party part didn’t really get started until around lunch time, but she was to be there around 9:30am for some training. I told her not to worry as I packed our canoe on top of the van. I had a plan to be paddling all morning while she was in class.
I went a couple miles upstream during the morning. Since I was by myself, I used my kayak paddle and sat in the middle of the boat. This made it easy to control and balance the boat. I had the perfect amount of water for a hard upstream paddle and a potentially casual paddle back downstream. I passed many people two times that morning, once going upstream, and once coming back down!
When I got back to where I started, the Stream Team people had a tent set up with bugs in it. They were demonstrating to anybody interested different bugs in the stream. I spent a few minutes at the tent before I moved all my equipment up to the parking lot to pack it all away.
At the celebration, there were tons of door prizes to help raise money for Stream Teams.
Lots of fun things happen at this event every year. There are several canoe races of which, Danelle and I brought home 2 first place trophies and one second place. The food and company were great.
Eli is a contractor that works with me. He lives near Vancouver Canada and flew in for the week to catch up on his project. This was the first time since his interview that he was in the office and it was a very fruitful time. We focused on what our software does and how it does it. His job is to translate that to the Mac world and create a similar product for that platform. Of course, I’m more interested in what we did for fun. So Jason and I took him on a whirlwind tour of St. Louis. I don’t think he’s ready to move his family here, but he had a good time!
Danelle works hard each year planting and managing our home garden. One of the more successful plants this year were cucumbers. They grew on a trellis made from Hogan’s bamboo. The harvest was so plentiful, that she was having trouble figuring out what to do with all of the cucumbers. After a bit of thought, she decided to try her hand at pickling.
The process started out with her cutting and slicing up each of the cucumbers, followed by a nice soak in a brine solution.
Then they were boiled in a vinegar solution and placed in sterile jars and sealed with heat. She placed them in different size jars to fit different occasions.
Of all the canning/jarring that Danelle did this year, this was the most successful and easy process to complete. Compared to the effort that went into making the salsa, this was a very quick and rewarding process.
Each year, the city of Webster Groves hosts a very nice family friendly parade to help celebrate our nation’s independence. Last year, we made our own float for the River Des Peres Watershead Coalition. But over the winter, we sold the boat that had the trailer we used for the float. This year we decided not to create our own float. But that didn’t stop Corvin and I from participating in the parade. The Cub Scouts have their own walking float. They are supposed to ride bikes and help promote the pack. Of course I’m not one to do something easy, so we decided to participate. Corvin rode his bike for a little over half the route while I rode my unicycle.
Looking at the photos now, I look like a total sweaty disgusting dork, but it was fun for me. I need to practice if I do it again as I was very exhausted at the end of the route. Near the last turn of the parade, on of the pedals broke off my unicycle from the abuse I was giving it. Overall it was a good time.