Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Fourth of July 2016

Couldn't of asked for better weather for the Fourth of July weekend and actual holiday. Maybe a bit chilly in the morning on the Fourth but better than 90 degrees, hot and humid, imo!

Group shot. Max butt bombing. Ever year the group size is different. We were probably the smallest we have been in a while with Jake at girlfriend's Anna place, nephew Reagan gone this year on big canoe trip in Canada, Jack working all the days and friends and girlfriends not accommpanying 

Sunday morning we took all the kids to Pinehurst resort for breakfast for the first time.

Massive tray of food. The waitress did phenomenal.

 Ryan got the sail boat going again this year after a one or two year break. Pretty much perfect picture days.
 Ryan and Mollie heading out. The wind was good most of the weekend. So good it tipped when TJ and Garrett were railing it proper. Than the night of the fourth when a storm pushed through a ghost rider took it out for a spin. It was short lived as the boat capsized. Naytauwash Baywatch ran to the shore but Ryan and TJ doing the actual rescue.
 Brought the paddle board along. Fun going out across the lake. Guess some folks across the lake said I didn't know what I was doing.
 Jim frying fish.
 Camp fire roasted sautéed potatoes.
 Post meal chat.

If you looked closely in the first photo, you might of noticed Jon's hand bandaged up. Saturday night at a friends place, keep it short, boat lift accident. Very lucky not worse. Surgery today fix up some broken bones and fingernail issue.

 The time around the fourth of July has not been good for the Richards boys.  Part of Jake's finger cut off 4 years ago, Jens breaking his arm, and Jack burning his butt.
 Next day Jon keeping mobile as much as possible playing outdoor ping pong. First year brining the table. Super fun playing outside with the wind and slope adding to the challenge.
 Morning ride on the fourth in White Earth State Forest. No bugs, cool temps and sweet rolling hills. From the cabin to the high point, a 500ft elevation gain and a Category 4 rating on the cycling climbing chart.
 Fourth of July Flotilla. Serious Sioux flag waving.
 Hands down the best one. Loon calling bringing it to the top.
 More ping pong action. Fun times. No baseball this year and pretty quiet on the sports action.
 My wife.

 Potato salad, bean salad, fruit salad, vegetable salad, buns and ham. Great stuff.
New signs going up on the Rez. Ojibway conversion for many of the towns and lakes.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Mid Summer

Summer is clicking along nicely. With schools ending later and starting earlier, it seems like there is only 6 solid weeks. This holds true for us at the resort with spring wedding season running farther into June and than starting back up again in August. Concordia Language camps in between to fill the gap. Hard to believe we are on the last days of June. 

Jonell getting flowers arranged for a wedding this June. Jonell does an absolutely amazing job multi tasking and nailing it like no one else I know. 

Jack ready to head for a Euro trip. Jack at the tail end of a ten day trip with a group from school.  

Ready to take flight! Having a blast, look forward to the stories upon return. 
The summer hockey as far as hockey tourneys is the lightest it has ever been as mentioned in a previous post. Jon did the Sioux Falls Stampede main camp mid June. The Stampede is part of the USHL.
Jon had a great camp putting himself where he wants to be going into the fall for JR hockey. He is spending the rest of the summer staying at the cousins working out with the MAP program.
With the grass growing slowing down, trail work has picked up and the tweaking of mountain bike trail and what not. I didn't get around to building new trail like I wanted but hopefully this fall can resume work on a new loop on the Maplelag property east of Bullhead lake.
Overall June has been an awesome month and some beautiful nights for riding.
Last week hit up the first Enduro race in the Duluth Enduro series. Had a blast pedaling as fast as possible on a short course and kept the rubber side down. Cross country racing isn't as technical like it used to be and Enduro is a nice alternative. Finished up a nice ride with Jake and Ethan after the racing.
Stayed over that night and hooked up with Jake for a beautiful ride the next morning before heading home on the ever expanding Duluth mountain bike trails.
Overlooking Duluth port from the new Enger trail. Jake took me on some new trail that was probably the most technical I've ridden and what he called "The hardest trail in Duluth". Not so much the rocks but the crazy drops. Was all good until the end of the ride. Went down hard on a 6 foot drop, and bruised up the other side of my ribs. Just as the other side was healing up from a crash in May.  No photos on the gnarly stuff. Just keeping the wheels moving as much as possible. Overall some intense riding in a 24 hour period.
Picked up an old used fishing boat from a widow south of Perham earlier this summer. She was so happy to see the boat go to a kid that was into fishing. Jens has been getting out quite a bit with some luck.
Has just enough horse to ski. Jens getting up on one for the first time this year and getting a run in here and there when conditions and time allow.
Wood fired cooking as much as possible on warm summer nights.

Jonell had a rare 6 day stretch she didn't have to go to town. Kept plenty busy with resort happenings but enjoyed every minute of down time available.

Monday, June 06, 2016

School Ends Summer Begins

This past May has to be one of the busiest we can remember. End of school activities, two graduations and preparing for the transition season at the resort.T
The big event the end of the month was Jon's graduation from high school. To reflect on it now seems like a blur. The last two weeks were busy with track meets, tennis matches and getting ready for the grad party among other things. Nonetheless, the day came and went and of course we are very proud of his graduation and everything he accomplished. Jon will be spending the summer in the cities at the relatives, working out with a hockey training group, preparing for the upcoming JR hockey season while attending a couple junior hockey tryouts. Where he will be playing exactly might not be known until the fall. All good, enjoy the journey.
Receiving the diploma.
We had many of his jerseys from playing with various teams over the years and at the end of the party, a few of those that have been great supporters, put a jersey on for a photo.
Post ceremony with Grandpa Jim.
Grandma Judy.

 Cheezy photo time.

Heading to the grad party with the new grad present. Ready to rip some trail at Lebanon Hills with cousin Garrett....

 People always show up you don't expect. There were many people I should post photo but one photo to a testament to our relationship with our wonderful long time guests...making a 8 hour journey to celebrate. Thanks Ralph for making the trip and everyone else who came on the day.
The weekend before we celebrated our nephew Pete's graduation in International Falls. Grandma Mary with 6 of her 8 grandsons.
What are you guys doing?
Stop on the way home at Dave's pizza. Best pizza in NW MN. Always sit in the booth with the Giro D' Italia poster.
Jens and his dubs partner Critter playing in a match at Fergus Falls. It was fun watching the boys this year as they really improved along the way. With Jens starting early and a good group of classmates playing, looking forward to watching them in the future.

Jon ended his season and high school career of sports in Crookston at sections. He had bumped around between doubles and singles throughout the season but played doubles at Sections. Some great tennis on a hot day.
Jack had his final track meet in Battle Lake. In all the years I competed in high school track and watching the kids over the years, never been there for a track meet. It was a nice venue, very good track.
Local coffee shop that made a very nice espresso/machiatto. Had a lot of espresso in May.
Local newspaper recognizing efforts of Ashby school. Posting the pic as it is worthy so,  considering local there has been little to no attention to Earth Day. Bottom line, Earth Day every day.
First time really had the chance to explore the town of Battle Lake, even if it was just a short while. Have to say very impressed with all the restaurants there. Looking forward to going back for a date outing!
Jack continues to bake and cook, all from scratch. Landed a job at the pizza shack at Hotel Shoreham for the summer. Making cupcakes above. Always making something new and trying new things. Having cooked during the summers in high school and during college at the Concordia Language camps and restaurants in the Fargo/Moorhead area, this makes me proud.
The weekend of Jon's graduation we all got out for a mountain bike ride. It's one thing to have us all together for a function but to mountain bike, beyond awesome. Jonell said I had to be beaming. I was.
Heading down the driveway en route to the trail.
Sunday after graduation, I had enough energy to get up early and make way to Sandilands, MB Canada for race #3 in the Manitoba Cup. I had been there twice before in the past. Basically a race truly in the middle of nowhere. Full recap in skinnyki.com mtb report. I love the drive up there, the people and the course is sweet. Really tough though. Bumpy, constant pedaling and absolutely cooked me. Took about a week to recover from that one and having bruised ribs from a crash on greasy singletrack earlier in the week didn't help.

Photo of the two fat bikers I talked about in skinnyski report that randomly came out of the bush while I was in no mans land, no cell service and no map wondering when and where I should turn next. Angels from the mountain bike Gods.

Monday was Memorial Day and Jens, along with the Detroit Lakes middle school band, marched in the 101st annual Memorial Day parade in Detroit Lakes. The band director does a fantastic job keeping the kids in line. Really proud that the kids still do this and I don't think they realize how much an honor it is to do it.
The rest of the Monday we enjoyed a rare beautiful weather Memorial day, taking the time off to enjoy. Lake jumping, paddle boarding and refreshing swims.
Evening fish outing. Good times whether catching fish or not.
Jens hitting the lake jump for the first time. Dry hair on the first jump allowing the flow action.

Summer has begun!