Fry Lodge Mixed Media 

It’s been a summer of creativity so far at Fry Lodge. Screens have been *mostly* pushed aside to make room for sketch books. Henry and Ruby have discovered Manga. Now, instead of fighting over who gets the computer, they fight over who gets the Manga how-to manual. This morning, Ruby woke up at 6AM and immediately started drawing in her sketch book. She’s such a perfectionist when it comes to art. Henry’s work, just as creative, has been on the more practical end of the spectrum. The other day he drew a yellow chalk center line all the way up the access road behind our house. It confused the hell out of the construction crew building the house next door. 

The summer’s art hasn’t been limited to drawing. Today, Ruby turned to science experiments in the kitchen. I’m a little nervous about the road ahead. 

New center line, courtesy Henry 

Posted in Art, Family, Fry Lodge Bellingham, Hobbies, Mundane Memories | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Seattle Field Trip 

The Fry Family Quartet spent the day as tourists in our former hometown today. While I biked between business meetings, Kristine, Henry and Ruby visited some of our favorite Emerald City places. Daily Dozen Donuts and the comic store in the Pike Place Market, Ballard, and PCC in Fremont. We ended the day with a picnic at Gasworks Park near the old Fry Lodge in Wallingford, while we waited for traffic to subside to an acceptable level before our drive north back to Bellingham. Seattle: a great place to visit. 

Posted in City Life, Family, Mundane Memories, Travel | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fry Lodge Trip Tic

A week from now, Fry Lodge goes mobile again as we take the family truckster to Nebraska for the annual Watson family reunion. Today,  Henry and I worked out the whole trip on the computer so we can get the maximum amount of fun time at Eugene T. Mahoney State Park without missing any of the good stuff along the way.

After dinner, we presented the 1st leg of the journey to Kristine and Ruby. We donned the cowboy hats for the Calgary Stampede part of the presentation. 

We’re all gonna have so much fun we’re gonna need plastic surgery to remove our smiles! 

Posted in Family | 4 Comments

Hello Summer 

Another year, another school for the Fry kids. The 2016-17 academic year is a wrap, and Henry and Ruby are one summer away from 5th and 3rd grade. It seems like they both grew at an accelerated rate this year – on every level. Comparing their first and last day of school photos, it looks like each is a head taller. 

Emotionally, socially and academically, both Henry and Ruby made big strides this year in Bellingham. Henry joined the chess club and made it to the state tournament. Ruby discovered her artist self and blew all of us away with her unique perspective on the world. Both took up ice skating and soccer and made so many friends in the process. 

The week before school let out, Kristine and I had the opportunity to review the kids’ portfolios that document their units of inquiry and work over the course of the year. Among Henry’s projects was a how-to chess book, which he sweetly dedicated to me. Ruby’s art section was stunning. Both of their teachers were amazing, which is a huge reason why they both excelled as much as they did. 

The Fry kids have hit their stride in Bellingham. This weekend we start a well deserved summer vacation. In preparation for our cross country RV trip in July, we’re doing a shake down cruise with the RV this weekend. Next week Ruby begins swimming lessons. Then Henry goes to LARP camp. The adventure continues. 

Posted in Art, Education, Family, Fry Lodge Bellingham, Milestones | Tagged , | Leave a comment

The Cedar Chest 

When my dad was 19, he bought my mom a cedar chest. I never knew how the cedar chest made its way into our family. I just remember it always being around – the place where we stored old family photos, birth certificates, baptismal gowns, and other family heirlooms. When I was a young boy, sitting on the floor of our rec room, I would occasionally open it up to sift through its contents. I loved the smell of cedar that would waft out as I opened the lid. I could keep myself busy for hours looking at black and white photos and my parents’ wedding album. I’m pretty sure I was the only person to regularly look through it, so the cedar chest became my hiding place for my own secret treasures. That’s where I kept my baseball cards.

This Memorial Day weekend, Kristine, the kids and I traveled to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho to help my parents move out of their house on Lake Coeur d’Alene, where they have lived for 20 years. That chest has sat untouched in a closet under my parents’ stairs for those two decades. My mom and dad have known for a while that I’ve had my eye on the cedar chest, so they are now ready to part ways with it. As she cleaned it out in preparation for our visit, my mom said she found my old baseball cards. She also found old photos of my dad and her from the dances they attended at Gonzaga Prep and Gonzaga University in the late 1950s and early ’60s. Henry and Ruby got a kick out of those.

Today, we all visited my parents’ house on the lake for the last time. My dad helped me load that cedar chest in the minivan. When we get back to Bellingham, that cedar chest is where I’m going to keep the memorabilia of Fry Lodge. I wonder if Henry or Ruby will develop their own relationship with that piece of furniture. Either way, I’m sure I’ll occasionally find myself sitting in front of it with the lid open, as the smell of cedar washes memories over me.

Goodbye, Fry Lodge Rockford Bay 

Posted in Family, Milestones, Mundane Memories, NFI, Traditions, Travel | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

Henry Takes Tacoma

Six months of tournaments culminated this weekend with Henry’s participation in the 2017 Washington State Chess Championship Tournament at the Tacoma Convention Center. To qualify, Henry had to win at least 3 games in at least one qualifying tournament this year. He managed to do that in all six tournaments in which he played. He had to turn it up a notch for Tacoma, though, as every kid there had won at least as many games as he had; and most had been playing for several years. H-man took it all in stride, winning two out of his five games in the state tournament. We’re so proud of you, Henry!

Posted in Family, Games, Hobbies, Life Lessons, Milestones, Travel, Video Entry | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

One Picture. 1000 Words. 

2017 Fry Lodge Easter Photo Shoot 

Posted in Family, Fry Lodge Bellingham, Random, Traditions | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment