We are still here but I have been trying to avoid typing for the last few months so I have not been posting anything. Today I am experimenting with a new WordPress plugin that lets me speak a blog post so I can still put things here without having to actually type.
Two weekends ago we went down to the lava tubes near Fillmore and ran around there for an afternoon. The kids were enjoying the time that we had to explore. They went up and down the cliff to get into the lava tubes many times, and they did it safely. The only person who got hurt was me. I was not hurt badly — I just slipped on a rock as we were going into one of the tubes that go off to the side of the main lava tube and we decided it would be better to come back another day would we have life with us and maybe explore the darker parts of the tubes when we were little better prepared. But we did run around for a couple hours and I think all the kids had fun. Loretta was able to come with us and hang out while we explored.
We made up a small fire and a hung around the fire as the sun went down. As it started to get dark we let the fire burn down, laid out some blankets on the ground, and watched the stars come out. We have not seen the Milky Way in a few years because we are getting more light pollution near our house. But we were able to see the stars come out the, and Milky Way was visible early in the night. So we sat there talking and looking at the Milky Way for about an hour until we decided to go back home. The kids had such a good time we are going to go back in a couple weeks and give them an entire day to explore the lava tubes maybe even more than one day.
And on a tech note, the text-to-speech plugin I just tested to write this is OK, not awesome. I may keep looking for one that handles capitalization and punctuation better.