Monday, December 26, 2011

The Boats

Another activity we enjoyed this year was seeing the lights on the boats on the river.  It's a tradition here in Portland for some of the local boat owners to decorate their boats with lights and go up and down the river.  This year we bundled up and headed down to the river.   We were very close to the action.  We went out onto one of the docks and watched as they came out of their small harbor and onto the river.  The boys thought this was so much fun.  We had a great time and hope to make this another one of our Christmas Time traditions.

The Family With Boats
We had a Whale of a Good Time!
On Dasher, On Dancer...
Simon & I Staying Warm
The Spruce Goose Has Landed

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Zoo Train

Last weekend we took the family and went to see the zoo lights and ride the zoo train.  We tried to do this last year, but it was raining at each possible time for us to go, so this was our first time.  We knew it was going to be cold, so we bundled up as best we could.  The boys were troopers, and although they were cold, the 2 older boys held it together for the sake of the train ride.  Simon fussed a bit, but he soon felt better after we warmed up his shoes and warmed his feet.

When we got there, the line was really long to ride the train.  I think that people must view this as some kind of tradition, and so many people stand in the over hour long line.  It reminded me much of the lines at Disneyland because the train ride itself only lasts about 10 minutes.  So the grandparents stood in line and we took the boys and walked around a bit.  We got some hot chocolate and tried to keep ourselves warm.  Then we stood in line for that last half hour to ride the train.  After the train ride, we headed home.  It was a fun family tradition, and if we can brave the cold, we might return again next year.
Waiting for Tickets

Joelle Keeps Simon Busy

Simon & Jeff

Daniel Tries to be Brave

Sam Waits for the Train

Some Lights

A Few More Lights

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas Time

I've really always enjoyed the holiday season, or even just any holiday for that matter.  Recently we enjoyed going out and getting our tree and bringing it home to decorate.  I think we may have gotten our biggest tree yet this year.  Perhaps next year we'll select one a little smaller.  We also enjoyed making some holiday cookies.  I love to bake if I have the time, and what better excuse than the holidays.  Happy Holidays!
The guys and the tree

Simon helps in the selection process

Placing Ornaments

Putting up the star

Finished Tree

Cookie Making

Monday, November 28, 2011

Thansgiving 2011

This year for Thanksgiving we went to Coeur d'Alene, Idaho to see my parents.  It's about a 6 hour drive with a couple of stops along the way.  The boys do okay with this trip, although they are always happy when it's over and we arrive.  We left after Daniel was out of school on Wednesday and drove over.  We were met with happy grandparents and a warm dinner before heading to bed.  Thanksgiving morning it was nice to wake up and even sleep in a little.  I always enjoy watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.  Jeff says his favorite part is seeing Santa, knowing the end of the parade is near.  But he's gracious enough to let me watch it.  It's also great to have my mom making dinner and I get to relax a bit.  Jeff and I took a walk before dinner to prep for the eating.  Thanksgiving dinner was yummy.  We had a Fri-Chick Stuffing, potatoes, cranberry sauce, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes, bread, and of course pumpkin and apple pie.  Friday morning my mom and I headed out to do some Christmas shopping.  We were not one of those who got up in the middle of the night to catch the deals.  I love my sleep too much to give that up.  But we did head out and caught a couple of deals.  Friday my sister and the cousins came over to play.  The boys love seeing their cousins, and that's fun for them.  Saturday we spent with my family again.  And in the evening Jeff and I went out and did a little Christmas shopping of our own.  Sunday we headed back home.  It was a wonderful Thanksgiving!  I hope yours was too!
The Family

Daniel & I

Grandma & Sam

Sam, Grandpa & Daniel

Emma & Simon

Daniel & Sam

Monday, November 21, 2011

A Day in Eugene

One might not think a day in Eugene, OR is very exciting, but think again!  Recently we found ourselves there.  Jeff was giving a presentation for ACP on a Thursday evening, so after I picked up Daniel from school, the boys and I drove down there to join him.  Friday we had the day to ourselves.  For Duck fans, like ourselves, we knew right away that we wanted to go visit the Duck Store and the Oregon Campus.  It was a beautiful sunny day.  We enjoyed walking around.  We took a few pics to commemorate the occasion.
In Front of the "O"

In Front of a Statue: The Pioneer

The Boys & Their Giant Leaves

Monday, November 14, 2011

A Past Look

About a month ago, I attended my 20 year high school reunion from Upper Columbia Academy.  It's hard for me to believe that I've been out of high school for 20 years.  20 sounds like such a big number, and yet I really don't feel as old as it sounds.  I remember when I was in high school and saw people coming back for their 10, 20, or 30 year reunions.  I thought they were so old.  Now, I guess it's my turn to be considered old, although I certainly don't feel it.

I went a couple of days early to spend some extra time with some friends.  It was so neat to see people that I hadn't seen in a long time.   I found it very comfortable to start conversations with my former classmates, although I haven't talked to some of them in years.  It was interesting to hear about what life has been like for them over the years.  I also really enjoyed seeing the children of my classmates.  When I stop and think about it, it seems so weird that now we are raising kids and preparing them for life in high school and beyond.

Here's a look at our reunion.

Our Class at the Reunion

Me, Hannah, Tiffany & Kristin

Hannah & I

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Enough Said

I feel like there is so much going on right now.  I have so much I want to say yet not enough time to sit down and write it all down.  So I will backtrack a bit and talk about a few weekends ago when I met up with my sisters in Northern California.

The three of us haven't gotten together for a few years, so it was so much fun to be able to spend this time together.  We thought we would go to San Francisco for the weekend, but we never actually made it there.  My sister Cheryl and I flew into Sacramento on Friday morning.  We agreed that we would spend the first night with my sister Laura, who lives in Shingle Springs, CA.  We thought this would be a good way to save a few dollars rather then getting a hotel.  So on Friday we started out in Old Town Sac.  We walked around and had lunch.  It was a beautiful sunny day, and we enjoyed being outside and talking with one another.  That night, we took a marital arts class, and I got to see my nephews, Richard and Michael.  It was also fun to see my brother-in-law Gary, whom I hadn't seen for about 3 years.  The four of us had dinner and then stayed up late talking.

Gary & I
On Saturday, our goal was to get up and head over to SF for the next 2 days.  We got a late start after sleeping in and having breakfast.  By the time we got just outside of Sacramento, we thought we might like to eat lunch.  So we stopped in Davis.  We found a yummy Thai food restaurant to eat at.  Then, we also thought it would be fun to walk around the town of Davis.  I had never spent time there, and it looked entertaining with its cute shops and fun places to wander.  By the time we thought about leaving Davis, it was around 4:30.  We talked about going on to SF or just heading back up the hill to my sister's house again.  We decided to once again save money rather then spending it on a hotel.  We drove back toward my sister's house and met Gary for dinner.  Then we went back to their house and watched a movie before heading to bed.
Sisters in Davis, CA

On Sunday morning we slept in again.  Then we headed to one of my all-time favorite places to eat for breakfast...Sweetie Pies, in Placerville.  We had a wonderful breakfast.  I also ran into a couple of people I knew from EAS (the school where I used to teach).  We took a drive by our old house.  After breakfast, we went for a 6-mile jog/walk on a trail in the Placerville area.  We went back home in time for me to shower and for my sisters to take me to the airport.

Waiting for Breakfast

Our Old Home
I had such a wonderful time seeing my sisters.  I would like to add that if any of my friends from the N. Cal area are reading this, I want to say how sorry I am that I wasn't able to see you.  I will have to make another trip to spend time with all of you.

Monday, October 17, 2011


I love this time of year!  I love seeing the trees turning beautiful colors.  I love the smell of pumpkins, apples, smokey fires.  I love baking yummy pumpkin pies or breads, apple pies and other yummy treats.  I love snuggling up on the sofa with a warm blanket and a cup of hot chocolate.  I love the crisp, cool mornings.  I even love the rain.

This past weekend we celebrated this wonderful season by going to a pumpkin patch.  I used to take the boys when we lived in Loma Linda.  But we missed last year, probably because I was still learning how to deal with having 3 kids.  So I was excited to go again this year.  The first thing we did was go through the corn maze.  I was very impressed with Daniel's sense of direction.  He led us all the way through and then back out again.  After that, it was a little lunch mixed in with pony rides for the older boys.  Then, it was on to a hay ride which took us out to the far reaches of the farm and a very big patch of pumpkins.  They even had white pumpkins which caught our attention.  Finally, we rode back to purchase our pumpkins along with a piece of pumpkin pie and ears of corn.  I would say it was a successful trip, and we all had lots of fun!

In Front of the Corn Maze

Daniel Picking out a White Pumpkin

Sam Enjoying the Pony Ride

Monday, October 10, 2011

A Busy 3 Weeks

I can't believe how busy the past 3 weeks/weekends have been for us.  First, it was Debbie and Todd's wedding.  Then I met with my sisters for our annual sister's weekend.   Then, last weekend I went to my 20 year high school reunion.  I hope to spend more time blogging again.  Here's a view of where we've been.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Hood to Coast

I recently was able to be a part of an amazing experience called Hood to Coast.  It's a 200 mile running relay race from Mt. Hood, Oregon to Seaside, Oregon and takes place over 2 days.  There are 12 people on a team that run 36 legs.  Everyone runs 3 legs.  The miles range from 3 to 8 miles.  There are 2 vans with 6 people in each van.  I was part of a team from Jeff's work at the hospital.  It was a resident team, but they had openings to fill, and when Jeff asked if I would be interested, I jumped at the chance to be a part of it.  They only allow a certain number of teams.  This year was the first year they had 1,200 teams whereas in previous years they only allowed 1,000 teams.  And there is a waiting list for teams, so you have to get accepted to even have a team to do HTC. 
So happy having finished my first leg.
I was in Van 1.  Our van started at 7:45 Friday morning.  We got up the mountain early, but our team started 10 minutes late.  We didn't know that we had to prove we had reflective vests and lights for the night runs.  After showing our gear, the officials let our first runner begin the race.  After dropping off our first runner, we drove to our first exchange spot.  Runner 2 got out and got ready for the exchange.  And that's how the race went.  We dropped off a runner, picked up a runner, and drove to the next exchange point.  I ran legs 4, 16 & 28.  My first leg was a little over 7 miles.  I ran around 9:30 am.  Fortunately it was early enough in the day that I didn't get too hot.  But it was one of the hotter days in Portland, so the afternoon runners had to deal with heat exhaustion.  Jeff had a tough leg.  It was the last leg in our van.  He had to run uphill, and it was getting warm.  He did it and recuperated enough to be able to run his other 2 legs. 
Jeff, making his tough leg look easy.
While Van 2 was running, our van had a short break.  It's only about 5 hours.  We got something to eat and also went to someone's house (one of our team members) to take showers and rest.  But then we had to quickly get back in our van and drive to our next major exchange point, fighting traffic, etc.  My next run was in the dark.  I ran around 8:45 that night.  It was 4.2 miles.  I had to run with a headlight, a reflective vest and a light attached to my vest.  It's all rather complicated, but I guess we have to do it for our safety.  That night our van finished around midnight.  We drove to the next major exchange point where they have designated sleeping areas.  Our van slept for a couple of hours before we had to meet Van 2 and run our last legs. 
7 of our 12 team members
I ran my last leg around 7:00 the next morning.  It was 4.1 miles.  I was so glad to be done.  I was tired, but it felt good to have accomplished something that I had spent so much time training and preparing for.  If given the chance to do it again, I would be thrilled to!
Van 1 at Seaside

Friday, August 19, 2011

Birthday Baby

Tomorrow is August 20, 2011.  It was on that day in 2010 that I gave birth to my third son, Simon Lee.  I can't believe his first year of life has already passed me by.  I knew it would go by fast.  I tried to savor all of those first days, first weeks, first few months.  But to be honest, he was by far my most difficult baby, and so a small part of me wanted him to grow up just to get through it.  And as I look at him, I'm so proud of how far he's come.  Yes, he was demanding as a baby, what baby isn't?  And with two other children to look after, there were some days when I wondered if I would make it through the day or night.  Now, I can't imagine my life without him.  He has added so much to my life.  Happy First Birthday Simon!  I love you so much!
A Few Hours Old

1 Day Old

1 Month Old

2 Months Old

3 Months Old

4 Months Old

5 Months Old

6 Months Old

7 Months Old

8 Months Old

9 Months Old

10 Months Old

11 Months Old