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Summer 2011

A bigger bike: Sofia grew a lot over the summer, and one of the things she no longer fit was her bicycle, the same one she'd finally shed of training wheels just last summer. Her new 20-inch bike is hot pink and has hand brakes. Watch out, 'cause she's coming! 

Get your lemonade here!: The neighborhood association hosted a garage sale at the end of July. Sofia and two of her friends put together a lemonade stand for the event. They sold cups of lemonade for $.25 and cookies and brownies (baked by the moms, of course) for $.50. The proceeds came to over $15, and the kids decided to give the money to Children's Hospital in Seattle. With the help of a parent who could match the gift through Microsoft, they donated $30! Sofia was very proud of her efforts. (See Sofia's album.)

A screamin' good time: While Jan and Sofia were still in Holland, Amy took Cameron and friend Emily to Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, for a long weekend at Silverwood Theme Park and Boulder Beach water park. We had a blast in the hot temperatures and on the screamin' rides.

At Boulder Beach with water ridesperfect on a 90-degree day!in the background.

Lots of Dutch practice: After Spain, Amy flew home, while Jan and Sofia flew north to spend three weeks visiting family in Vlissingen, the Netherlands. While they were there, the weather was not particularly summery. Nevertheless, they found many ways to keep busy and have fun. They strolled the Vlissingen street festival and also spent hours at the Vlissingen annual fair, where they went on many rides and ate delicious oliebollen. They attended a graduation party for cousin Maaike and a going-away party for cousin Jolien (heading off to help orphans in Africa). They also celebrated Jan's 57th birthday with lots of family. They visited a school acquaintance of Jan's who lived on a farm (Sofia enjoyed the chickens), and Seattle friend Peter Mark included Vlissingen in his European tour, and they drove around the Walcheren peninsula and visited Brugge. On the couple of nicest days, Sofia played on the beach. She also spent lots of time at play areas, including the Speeltuin, the Klokhuis, Mini Mundi, the Duinrell theme park with cousin Maaike and her friend Rob, Efteling theme park with cousin Jasper, and the Irrland theme park in Germany. That's a lot of playing! They also stayed a couple days with Jan's sister Lianne and visited a preview of the 2012 Floriade (a decennial flower show). Three weeks of speaking only Dutch (with a few minutes of daily Skyping with Amy) meant that Solfia had lots of Dutch practice! (See Sofia's World.)

Buenos dias!: Just days after Sofia finished school, Amy, Jan and Sofia flew to Málaga for a two-week tour of Andalucia, What a wonderful trip! We spent one week traveling, stopping in Granada, Córdoba, Sevilla, Tarifa, Medina Sidonia, Ronda, and Gibraltar, taking in the region's history, art, architecture, and past and present culture. The second week we stayed in Torremolinos, where we not only played on the beach but also visited family-friendly destinations such as Benalmádena's Tivoli World theme park, Fuengirola's Bioparc (zoo), and Aqualand and the Crocodile Park in Torremolinos. Besides enjoying the beauty and exoticness of Andalucia, we loved, after surviving Seattle's coldest, cloudiest spring on record, waking up every day for two weeks to sun and warm temperatures. Now that's vacation! (See Sofia's album.)

Our first day, in Granada, in the beautiful gardens of the Generalife, with the Alhambra in the background.

June means no school!: After a difficult week of finals (particularly for Calculus with Analytic Geometry III and the Physics of Electromagnetism and Oscillatory Motion; not so much the History of Jazz) , Cameron completed his freshman year at the UW on June 10th. He plans to spend the summer camping, playing video games, enjoying the sun, and, we all hope, working at the job he has yet to find. Sofia finished first grade on June 16th..The last day of school included an outdoor "fair" with games, popcorn, and ice cream. She has big plans for her summer. (See Sofia's World.)

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