Sofia's World

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Summer 2008

End of School Picnic, June

On June 13th, my Montessori hosted an all-school 25th anniversary party. It was a potluck picnic at Cottage Lake Park, and the theme was students from around the world. There were music bands from different cultures, balloons, special activity booths with crafts to make representing different countries, a "passport" to stamp, face painting, and lots and lots of good food [left]!  

To represent the Netherlands, Papa and I made a batch of boterkoek the night before. It was a hit because we brought home an empty container!

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Father's Day, June

Father’s Day was sunny and warm this year, so we went to Waverly Beach Park in Kirkland to celebrate. We brought a picnic basket with food for an early dinner, but mostly I liked playing on the beach in the sand and on all the playground equipment. Papa joined me on the beach, but he also took a nap on the grass. I think Mommy and I gave him a nice day.

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Daycare Picnic, June

 

On June 22nd  Miss Stephanie had a picnic at Anderson Park in Redmond for all her daycare “kiddos” and their families. 

We had hamburgers and hot dogs with salads, fruit, and desserts that everyone brought. Miss Stephanie hired a professional photographer to take our pictures, so we did lots of posing, too [left], but mostly I liked playing with all my friends. The park had a big sand pit for digging, we tried hitting balls from a baseball T (I was pretty good!), we played lots of tag and running games, and we drew on the sidewalks with chalk the photographer gave us.

With the Montessori closed during the summer, I went to Miss Stephanie's three days a week for the full day. I had a great time playing. These are my Carefully Kept daycare friends (from left): Nicholas, Teddy, Shea, me, Ava, Zoe, Madison, and Tom. 

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Strawberry Festival, June

This summer we didn’t have any big travel plans, so Mommy decided to try and do something special each weekend. The first weekend after school ended we went to the Strawberry Festival in Bellevue.  It was lots of fun. 

I had my face painted [right], and we bought little tickets so that I could go on lots of rides—pedal cars, slippery slides, inflatable jumping rooms, and more. Mommy and Papa also allowed me to eat ice cream and cotton candy, and they shared a big bowl of strawberry shortcake.  

If this is summer, then I’m in!

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July Fourth

The morning of July Fourth Mommy, Papa, Cameron, his friend Emily, his brother Brennan, and I set up chairs along Main Street in Bothell to watch the parades [left]. First we watched the kiddie parade, with lots of children riding their decorated bikes, dogs in costumes, babies pulled in wagons, and candy flying everywhere. (This year Mommy brought bags for Brennan and me so we could easily collect the candy.) 

Then we watched the regular parade, starting with the Redcoats and Rebels marching by, then stopping occasionally to “shoot” at each other. There were also music bands, classic cars, clowns, gymnastic teams, army vehicles, and a big pirate ship with a canon. This year it didn’t scare me like it did last year.

 

After the parade we went to Mr. Scott’s (Cameron’s dad’s) house for a party. There was an inflatable bounce room in his front yard, and I spent a lot of time flying around in it with the other kids. There was lots of food, too, and games to play in the backyard.  

Early in the evening Cameron, Brennan, and some of the others lit off daylight fireworks: snakes, fountains, whistling Petes, and smoke bombs.  I covered my ears [right], but just like the parade pirates, they didn’t scare me like they did last year.  

I just wish I were old enough to stay up for the nighttime display!

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Pony Ride, July

 

In July my friend Elora had a birthday party, and it was special because they hired a pony for all the kids to ride. His name was Peppermint. 

I’d never been on a pony before, but I wasn’t afraid.  Peppermint's trainer said that I was a very good rider. 

Peppermint was very gentle.  When he was done carrying all of us, I helped brush him, and I fed him lots of carrots from a flat hand.

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Vacation to Columbia Gorge, August

Our one real vacation this summer was in the Chateau op Wielen to the Columbia Gorge in Oregon. The first night we spent with the Williamsons in Portland. This visit Jeanne gave us a tour all around her beautiful garden and let us pick raspberries, marionberries, strawberries, and blueberries to take with us. For the next two nights we had fresh berries on ice cream for dessert. 

The next two nights we stayed at Deschutes  River State Park, near The Dalles. It was sunny and warm, and I spent parts of each day on a little beach on the river, playing in the mud [right]. We also visited the Columbia  Gorge Discovery Center and Museum. I made crafts, put on costumes of settlers and British Redcoats, stood under a full-size mammoth, and dug for small artifacts in a sand pit. Another day we took a short drive across the Columbia River Bridge to Washington to see the Native American pictographs and petroglyphs at Horsethief Lake State Park.  They looked like pictures I could draw!

 

 

The next two nights we spent farther west at a KOA in Cascade Locks. We visited the Marine Park and I played in the playground while Mommy and Cameron rode a sternwheeler on the river. I had the most fun in the resort's swimming pool; Mommy had brought lots of pool toys. From Cascade Locks we also went to the Bonneville  Lock and Dam visitor center. We saw fish swimming up the fish ladder. Inside, the dam was really, really, really big!

The very best part of the trip was eating marshmallows and s'mores at the campfire. One night I spied Mommy, Papa, and Cameron through the window when they thought I was asleep inside. They had to let me come out and try some toasted marshmallows [left]. I'd never had them before; they were yummy!

Our last night we stayed in Washington at the Silver Lake Motel and Resort. In the morning I fed bread crumbs to the ducks Then we rented a pontoon boat and Cameron steered us around the lake. 

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Swimming

I took swimming lessons all summer long at Northwest Aerials. When I started in June, I had two floaties attached to my back. Pretty quickly, my teacher reduced that to one, and soon I was swimming without any!  By the end of the summer, I was able to swim the length of the pool (with a few stops).  

I’m pretty proud of myself.  And I love the water!

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Zoos and More Zoos

 

I like animals and bugs a lot, so this was a great summer: The Summer of Zoos.  

In June, Mommy took me to Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle; some of my favorite places there are the butterfly house and the reptile house. I like snakes! Another day we went to Kelsey Creek Farm in Bellevue, where we saw a giant muddy pig, horses, cows, sheep, and lots of chickens.

Later in the summer Mommy also took me to the Cougar Mountain Zoo in Issaquah.  There I saw lots of reindeer up close, and I got to feed llamas out of my hand. 

In July the whole family went to Northwest Trek for the day. We walked around to see big cats, wolves, and bears, as well as smaller animals like beavers, otters, skunks, and badgers. Then we took an hour-long tram ride [left] and saw lots of deer, elk, bison, and mountain goats.  It was a really fun day. 

Finally, on Labor Day, the last day of summer, Mommy, Papa, and I went to Point Defiance Zoo in Tacoma. Some of my favorite animals there were the beluga whales (they performed skills and jumped out of the water), sharks, and river otters. I got to touch different sea animals in the tide pool encounter (some people were afraid, but not me!), and when we saw the warm water fish being fed, I raised my hand and asked the zookeeper, “What makes a puffer fish puff?” Mommy said that was a really good question.

I don't think there are any more zoos left here to see!

 

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