Weekend report

We had an enjoyable weekend off together.  Friday night we spent celebrating my neighbors birthday amongst other neighbors and dogs…was a great time.  Royce had his very first whole lobster and was successful in cracking all the pieces in the right places to get to the tasty meat.  The wine and beer was flowing a bit too easily and before we knew it Saturday was upon us.  

Due to the late night, Saturday was a bit more lazy than I had anticipated but we did manage to run some errands in the morning and rest in the afternoon before heading to Karen and Dan’s place for their “renovation unveiling”  party.    They recently had their attic refinished into a master suite complete with a spa bathroom worthy of feature in Architectural Digest.  Envy would be a nice way to describe our reaction…everything from the windows to the floor was beautifully constructed and someday I hope we have the sanity and $$ to afford to do something half as beautiful as what they did.  Later that evening we dined on their patio on Grilled Guacho Steak with Chimichurri Sauce, succulent grilled farm fresh sweat corn and my favorite summer coleslaw salad.  

Today was our Introduction to GPS Navigation course through our local REI Outdoor SchoolWednesday’s class introduced us to map and compass reading and today’s basically built on that and taught us how to use GPS for navigating.  All and all the class in the morning was a bit dull and was focused too much on the bells and whistles of the device they lent us.  Once I figured out how to do what I needed to do with my own Garmin Forerunner 205 I was ready to hit the trails and leave the other students in the dust.  I was pleasantly surprised to find that my little wrist GPS I bought for running could keep up with the $500 gadget they lent us.  I’m sure it will come in handy when we are in Yellowstone.  We are excited to test our map and compass skills though when we are there and do stuff the ‘old fashioned way’.

In the afternoon we were introduced to Geocaching and are now addicted.  Geocaching is basically nothing short of a world-wide treasure hunt.  You find online the latitude/longitude of the treasures near your location…enter the coordinates into your GPS and using the clues and tools you find little caches.  Today we found Krusty Krab and Tigger’s Treehouse.  It’s a fun addictive game and if you have a GPS unit (or exceptional map skills) it is a way to make hiking a bit more exciting and with kids I’m sure the ‘treasure hunt’ would never get old.

All and all I’m happy with the knowledge we gathered from the two courses.  They were taught by some amazing people with great stories and a genuine love for teaching, nature, and exploration. We are lucky to live in a geographic area that has such a novelty, as the outdoor schools are in only seven major cities.   I’m convinced I need to take the Outdoor Photography class before I leave for Yellowstone.  It’s taught by a guy that photographs for Outdoor Magazine and came highly recommended by our teacher today who also teaches the class and is a professor of photography at Georgetown.  Next weekend is my camera purchasing weekend…I’m so excited I can’t wait!!! 

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