05 August 2011

Pioneer Picnic

Pioneer Day is celebrated in Utah on July 24, to commemorate the day that the pioneers first settled in the Salt Lake Valley. Of course, here in Oregon we don't have that official holiday, but there is definitely a history of pioneers. I almost feel like I have some share in that history by playing the old school mac version of Oregon Trails at Verstovia Elementary... No... Probably not.

The Lebanon Oregon Stake of my church celebrated the pioneer treks by holding a picnic at the stake center in Albany. Note to all LDS out-of-staters: Lebanon used to be the center of the stake, which is why Lebanon still has place in the stake name and our local ward chapel has a rather large basketball court and baptismal font. However, the stake center is located in Albany on Grand Prarie road. Don't try going to "the old stake center" off 28th, like I did. Look for this gogeous building above with massive field and pavillion area.

Even though Scott wasn't home yet for the event, I decided I should probably attend. I was even more motivated to go because they said they would be holding a bake off and I was determined to win a prize. Little did I know that the "prizes" were nominal awards... like The Best Carrot Cake award, that was rewarded to... the ONLY carrot cake entered into the contest.

Here's my entry into the bake off:
It didn't turn out as purty as I wanted it to, but I submitted nonetheless and won "The Gooiest" award. I also felt some pride in the fact that the cake was completely devoured by the time I gathered my cake dome to drive home! I used this recipe, that we first tasted at my friend Jandee's home!

A few youth from the stake played country music to entertain us, including the oldest Phillip's boy who helped us move into Lebanon when we arrived in May. They also had relay races scheduled for the kids, croquet, a water pump play area, and snow cones and cotton candy.

Have I mentioned that I have an unhealthy obsession with cotton candy? I think it's the fact that it is fair food, which always brings back positive summer memories. You could enjoy summer all year round, it seems, just by grabbing dollar section cotton candy at Target. I mean, look how radiant that fluff of sugar looks in the sun! How could you possibly say no to that?

We really love our ward! They have been so welcoming to all the med school families moving in, but I felt especially for us. Being without Scott the first seven weeks, I had more spontaneous visits and phone calls than I've had from church members maybe in my lifetime. Everyone was always asking me if I needed anything and making sure I was taken care of and safe. Not to mention the fun activities planned. What a great start to building our home in Lebanon!