Summer Time, Finally.

Summer has officially started here at Washington Family Ranch. This past Saturday was day one of week one.  There are only about 560 campers here this week , which is a big number but small for this camp. Pretty soon we will have camps of around 700! I have started working in the Summer Office which consists of answering phones and making buttons for guests to wear… not the most thrilling position but it definitely beats the alternative of watching  movies all day long and hopelessly searching for something, anything to do.  Jordan is hard at work in the kitchen working mainly AM shifts with some PM. I think he is having fun getting to know the summer staff and workcrew in there with him. 

We recently ventured more into town and something really exciting  happened.  WE GOT A COSTCO MEMBERSHIP! Ok, Ok, maybe you don’t think its really noteworthy, but we are so excited to buy in bulk, as a way to save money on groceries and trips into town. Costco is about two and a half hours away in Bend, along with stores like Target, Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, etc.  There are other grocery stores closer to us, but sometimes its fun to mix it up a little.  We were really excited to visit Bend and hope to go there a lot more.  It’s nice to be around a real town with cool shops and restaraunts to go to, that is definitely something we are missing from Asheville.

We are starting to know our neighbors better and better and enjoying learning the area in which we live. It’s definitely been an adjustment but we are enjoying the adventure of it

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Wild Canyon Games

As I described, camp is huge! I was reading a history of the camp this week at work and Washington Family Ranch as a whole consists of nearly 100,000 acres, that’s larger than Seattle or Portland, crazy!

This weekend there are almost 1200 people staying at both camps, Canyon and Creekside, for an event called Wild Canyon Games (WCG).  WCG is an annual event which raises money for several organizations in Oregon, including Young Life. The events include a triathlon, geocaching, and a relay race which utilizes the features of camp like the zip line, ropes course, and blob.  Teams of 7 participate in each event. (http://wildcanyongames.org/)

This morning at 7am the triathlon and geocaching began.  If you don’t know what geocaching is it is basically a treasure hunt using gps locators.  Some of the geocachers covered 17 miles this morning running all over property, luckily it was not blazing hot today.  Because we have so many competitors running around , there are at least two life flight helicopters and a few search and rescue planes here in case of emergency.  While the geocaching competition was going on there was a plane flying around monitoring if anyone needed urgent help.

The WCGs are not affiliated with YL other than the part where they are held at camp and YL benefits.  Tons of big name sponsors like Wells Fargo, TomTom, Clif bars, and the US army support it and even have competing teams.  All in all, it is an awesome event unlike anything we’ve seen at a YL camp before!

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Other than watching the games, today I did a little baking.  I tired some gluten free recipes.  I made some baked oatmeal cups , which were ok, and some gluten free oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, which were great!  Here is the recipe for them:)

1/3 cup salted butter
1 1/2 cups gluten free oats
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1/8 tsp sea salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg
2/3 cup coarsely chopped chocolate

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Melt  the butter and let sit so it will cool

Mix dry ingredients so there are no lumps

Whisk cooled butter, egg, and vanilla

Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir well

Add chocolate

Chill the “dough” mixture for about 30 minutes

Place dough in one inch balls on a parchment paper covered cookie sheet about two inches apart

Bake 10-15 minutes until edges are slightly browned and top is golden.

These turn out crisp and thin, I was happy with them, especially to be gluten free.

Hope y’all enjoy!

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We’ve Moved!

It’s true! In the past five weeks, Jordan and I have moved ourselves from Asheville, NC to Antelope, OR. That’s right, Oregon. Jordan was offered a (seasonal) job at Young Life’s Washington Family Ranch (WFR). He will be working in the kitchen this summer through October with the possibility of this opportunity turning into a full time, permanent position.

Things out here are much different than what we are used to.  One of the first questions most of our friends and family back home asked us before our move was, “What is Antelope,  Oregon near?”  Well, the answer to that is… nothing.  We live an hour away from the nearest grocery store if that gives you any clue.  The town of Antelope has a population of no more than 50 and consists of a post office.  We are lucky enough to live on camp.  In fact every WFR staff member and family lives on the property.  There are about 60 full time staff members plus all of their families here.

If you are familiar with Windy Gap or any other Young Life Camp property really, WFR is pretty different.  The property is huge and consists of two camps, Canyon and Creekside.  (Canyon is a high school camp and the older of the two and Creekside is the middle school camp and brand spanking new. You cannot see one camp from the other and each camp can host upwards of 700 people! Again, the property is huge.

Creekside                                        Canyon

To be continued…..

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