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The Fire by Bennett

(See entry here for what this is)

We went camping at Timothy Lake Campground near Mount Hood in Oregon in 2013.  It was our family (Mom, Dad, Carter, and me) and the Mace family (Eric, Frannie, Nina, and Nate)  (Laura had to go home early).  Carter thought of making a big fire on the last day of camping.

We made the structure for the fire during the day.  It was about a foot and a half tall and in the shape of a teepee.  Dad was chopping wood and me and the other kids stacking wood in the middle of the fire ring.  We put a mini cereal box filled with moss and paper in the middle for an extra treat.  We knew the moss and paper would burn really well and make the fire really big for a few seconds. It was hard work that was going to pay off.

We are just about to light the big fire.  We are all excited.  We light it.  The fire goes out.  We light it in a few places and wait.  It slowly started and then got really big.  At its peak the fire was about two feet tall.  When the mini cereal box caught fire, it turned the fire green because of the chemicals.

The fire was great for s’mores.  It had hot fire to soften the marshmallow, some hot parts to get the marshmallow brown, and some warm parts to get it puffy.  After we ate our s’mores, we sang camp songs around the fire.  My favorite song was Little Spaceship.

I loved the gigantic s’mores fire because it made delicious s’mores and because we were with some really nice friends.

 

New Orleans City Day (Part 3 of ?)

Now, I get to describe an easier day.  Just fun in The Big Easy.

We tried to take the ferry from Algiers Point across to Canal Street – thinking it would be a fun way to transport ourselves across the Mississippi.  Well, ignore what that website says about a dollar for the car – you can’t take cars on this ferry anymore.  No cars allowed.

Undeterred, we drove over to the 9th Ward to see the houses being built under the Make It Right Foundation.  A very small personal connection to Hurricane Katrina exists for our family, Bennett was born when all the newspapers and televisions were covering the flood and the aftermath.  (I told him that’s the only reason his birth didn’t make the front page.  He rolled his eyes.)   I remember being in labor and watching the news coverage.  Afterward, I made the typical donation to American Red Cross, but when I heard my first Hollywood Crush, Brad Pitt, was the poster boy for this group that wanted to build smart, eco-friendly houses in the 9th Ward, I sent another donation to that.  So we went to see the houses.  They are super colorful, wild, wacky, inspiring, a greenies heaven.  They bill themselves as the largest eco LEED certified houses in the US.  There is also lots of criticism about spending so much money here in an area that is still below sea level and may never recover because the 14,000 people who used to live there have moved on.  Only 2000 live there now.  This was an interesting urban planning article on why putting houses here is a bad idea. 

By the way, 8 years later there are still abandoned houses in this area that have the international search and rescue X on the front showing if any living or dead were found in the house.  It is sobering.

Then we drove off to the French Quarter for some beignets, muffulettas, some street musicians, a lame-ish Junior Ranger badge from the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park outpost in the French Quarter,  a two hour walking tour that you only paid what you that it was worth, and finally alcoholic smoothies.  We did the tourist part of the city up in grand style.  The kids REALLY liked the tumblers in front of Jackson Square.  The funny thing is David and I are pretty sure we saw this exact group 12 years ago.

So no innocence lost on our second day in New Orleans.

These really aren't the wacky Make It Right Houses.  Check out the link for some better ones.
These really aren’t the wacky Make It Right Houses. Check out the link for some better ones.
Just music everywhere in New Orleans.  Some of it is even good!
Just music everywhere in New Orleans. Some of it is even good!

 

I challenge someone to show me how you eat these with out getting sugar all over yourself.
I challenge someone to show me how you eat these with out getting sugar all over yourself.

Compare those prices!

Compare those prices!
Boys like to give love to dogs stretched out in parks!
Boys like to give love to dogs stretched out in parks!
Note the eager participants in the front on the Walking Tour.
Note the eager participants in the front on the Walking Tour.