AURORA—Mom, Dad and Jonas are definitely more in tune with winter, preferring the sensation of being really cold to the sensation of being really hot. But when summer rolls around, we still know how to have a good time. So despite a blazing hot summer afternoon last weekend, we decided to head east a bit to the Arapahoe County Fair to take in some rides, see some animals and enjoy the outdoors. Jonas had a blast, riding just about everything there was to ride. We even got to check out some raptors and feed some baby goats. Throw in an icy drink here and there and it made for a fun and exhilarating afternoon at the county fair.
CENTENNIAL—Jonas has long had a thing for ’80s music (and we, of course, have no idea where this might come from…). There was the time when he was 3 and started belting out “Rosanna” from his crib. Then there was the time not all that long after that it was “Our House” that seemed to catch his ear. And who could forget his liking, to our slight concern, of “Centerfold,” enough that he’s gone to our basement drums to perform it with instrumentation? Well, we’re happy to report there’s a new obsession in town. The other day on the radio, Jonas heard “Eye of the Tiger” and it is safe to say he’s hooked. The other day, he came home from school with a lovely drawing of an animal. “What’s this?” Mom asked. “It’s the eye of the tiger…” began the reply and you can imagine where it went from there…
But the best part of Jonas’ interest in the song is his curious interpretation of the lyrics. Instead of the main character “rising up, back on the street,” somehow in Jonas’ version the man is “rising up, straight from the south,” an artistic liberty that puts the song in an entirely new context. In any case, it must be heard to be believed, and luckily, Daily Gewirtz had a videographer on scene the other day to capture his version in all its glory.
EVERGREEN—After our hike the other day, we stopped off in the lovely town of Evergreen to grab some ice cream. But when we saw there was a Beau Jo’s Pizza there, we called an audible and decided to have an early dinner instead. Jonas has been to their iconic location in the nearby mountain town of Idaho Springs, but he has never before shown interest in the best part of the “mountain pie,” which is the thick crust that is best eaten with honey drizzled on top. This time around, he was all about the honey and enjoyed every sticky bite. It was another significant culinary milestone.
EVERGREEN—Somehow the summer is getting away from us it seems. It’s already late July and we realized this weekend we hadn’t even been up to the mountains yet to enjoy the best of what Colorado has to offer. So on Sunday, despite some cloudy skies, we trekked up to Evergreen and hiked around the fantastic Three Sisters area, including a trail called “Hidden Fawn,” which lived up to its name when we came across an amazing creature grazing on some of the beautiful wildflowers and vegetation in the area. It drizzled on us a bit here and there but the weather was cool and the smells of the pine trees were refreshing. It was a fun afternoon and one we will hopefully get to repeat a few more times before the summer is officially over.
CENTENNIAL—A few weeks back, we shared with you our efforts to grow a garden this year. Well, with weeks of rain since then, it’s safe to say that garden is doing quite well. Too well, perhaps. Our pumpkins are on their way to taking over a good swath of the cul de sac (and it’s only July!). The watermelons we planted are also doing quite nicely. But the cucumbers. Oh, the cucumbers. Our plans to grow some pickling cucumbers have also come to fruition as we have lots and lots of them. So many that this weekend we decided to break down and get pickling. And the results were fantastic. Some vinegar, some sugar, some fennel and mustard seeds, a bit of garlic and a whole bunch of dill later, and we had ourselves some lovely jars of real-life pickles. Here’s a look at our finished result. And if you’re in the neighborhood and need some cucumbers of your own, don’t hesitate to stop by.
CENTENNIAL—When Jonas received a bug catcher recently as a gift from his Uncle Eric and Aunt Debi, we weren’t exactly sure how he’d react to it. The gift itself was pretty cool, complete with a temporary cage to examine whatever he found, plus neat tools like a magnify glass to get a closer look. And for a few weeks, not much happened until the other day when he and Mom went on the lookout for bugs but disappointingly found nothing. But last night, while Jonas was riding his block around the cul de sac, he stopped for quite a while, prompting Dad to walk down the street to see what was up. And what was up was not a problem with the bike. Rather, Jonas was handling a roly poly he had caught and demanding we return at once to the house to study it. So off we went to get the bug catching tools. That was followed by about 30 minutes of serious inspection, during which Dad (who had never seen Jonas previously touch a bug) was surprised by exactly how much hands-on interaction Jonas wanted with his new friend. This may have had something to do with Jonas’ school visit yesterday by a person from a local reptile sanctuary (or something like that) who brought in snakes and lizards and frogs and such for the kids to touch. Empowered by touching a python earlier in the day, Jonas seemed anxious to start studying anything he found. Jonas eventually released his roly poly friend, but not after studying everything there was to see about him. We have the feeling it won’t be the last of his encounters this summer.