Sunday, February 24, 2013


It has been nearly pleasant in spite of the storm skirting our town.  I insisted that Mom and I go on a walk in the rain together so we could both use our umbrellas.We made it two blocks but the gusts made umbrellas a bit tricky.

 Owen had President's day off, so he and Dad went to Cape Meares Lake and Owen caught an awesome 17 1/2" trout.  That's bigger than any Dad has caught!  They had a great fellas's day together.

 The rest of this weekend was spent outside a lot.  The rain cleared, though the mud remains.  Owen and I had a great time playing in the back yard spending lots of time feeding the chickens and making mud-pies.
 We did get a pretty great play-date in while Mom was out creating a bird for Marquam nature park!  Esme and Joaquin came over and we had a lovely visit together.  It was great to see our pals.
 Today, church, more mud pies and a great trip to Ottos so we could get some hot-dogs for lunch.
 Followed by a visit to the play-ground.  I did awesome, some of my most impressive climbing to date.  Owen also rocked the play-structure.
 Mom challenged him to make a full circuit (this includes at least five overhead devices) and back without falling, and after two tries, he totally made it!  More than I could say for Dad, who tried pretty hard, and made it around but dragged a fair-bit.
 Champion of the playground!!!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

 Grace and I celebrated Valentines day in style... with some new glasses and disguises from the folks :).  Now, if only the Sun would stay out so we could use the glasses!  Otherwise, celebrating at school is awesome!  Big party, loads of valentines from all of my friends, and candy of course, to sweeten the day even more!
 We have been playing a lot of bananagrams with Grace... she is getting pretty darned good at her letters, she does best if she can think of a person associated with the letter... so all of her friends at school and and family have helped her learn her letters... thanks!  She loves to tell people what letter their names start with, and approaches it like it is big big news!
 Mom and Grace had a nice leisurely Friday together, playing at home in the morning and running errands in the afternoon.  They didn't have to zoom back from anywhere to pick me up because I was gung-ho to have Dad bike to school so we could ride home together.  Mom had mixed feelings 'cause she likes our afternoons together, but apparently she "always comes in the middle of fun things" at the Y, so she let it go.
Saturday morning we met up with our sweet baby friend Elsa and her folks for some dim sum.
 and stayed long enough to see the Lion Dance at the restaurant.  I LOVE the lettuce bits.  Poor Grace though remains NOT a fan of the lion dance and hid out in the car the whole time with Dad.
With the promise of even more dances (for me) and arts and crafts for Grace, we headed over to the Lan Su Chinese Garden.  They do a pretty amazing program for New Years

 and the garden is even more lovely with all of the lanterns and decorations.
 We made some impressively spinny snakes that are still amusing us.

 There were tons of coy and other fish happily schooling about which was pretty cool too.
 We also experienced the Chinese school's yo-yo club, they were pretty cool.  Tons of tricks and tosses and only two of the yo-yos into the lake.
 I even got a little lesson afterwards, and was so excited that the folks came home with a chinese yoyo for me (and dad, and Mom) to work on.
 It is a lot harder without the expert helping me out, and even though Mom is certain they are all pretty much the same, I am certain that the special black yoyo just worked a lot better than our pink version.
 I spent much of the rest of the afternoon excavating my Sharks teeth, thanks James!  I now have one fantastic necklace and one in the wings waiting to be made.
 Today, I made a bug-house.  It took quite a bit of time and a lot of sticks, but I think the bugs will love it.
 We spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying Ted's 4th birthday and playing in Mt Scott park with bears, bubbles and bikes.
 In general a pretty fun teddy bear picnic party.
The rest of the evening was spent making a huge batch of Won-tons to keep us in easy dinners for a while.  Grace and I can decimate the won-tons.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Gong Hay Fat Choy... Happy year of the Snake!

Happy New Year!  We have had a lovely weekend.  Friday, I got to head into work to have lunch with Dad, which is always a super treat, while Mom goes to a meeting, we get to have cheese pizza at hotlips!!! Saturday, Mom, Owen and I headed to the yard and garden show with Liam and Vanessa.
x In addition to pretty awesome garden displays, they also have some great stuff for kids to do as well, including a trampoline and a cool OMSI exhibit, with the floating balls, magnets and all sorts of puzzles.  
 We had a celebratory evening at with Val, Ray, Joaquin and Esme, and ... well a whole bunch of other friends!  It was a fantastic New-Years celebration full of awesome food, rampaging kids,   
 T-shirt printing, courtesy of Val and Daddy's designs.
 some vintage beer (Dan shared his Doggy Claus 2001 Barleywine from hair of the dog... v. nice),
 and all manner of noise, celebrating and fun.
 and a bit of catching-up with friends which is a treasured way to kick-off the new year!
 We finally got everyone chilled down with some muppets in space.
 a great end to a fun evening, Thanks guys!
 We did add a few new ladies to our flock.  A lovely black australop and a production layer, no names yet, ant least not any that don't change from breath to breath.
 Otherwise a lovely and quiet Sunday, we got a bit of play with our buddies Joaquin and Esme again which motivated Mom to hit the yard for some yard-work for much of the afternoon... followed up by a walk do the coffee shop for a snack.
 It was a great kick-off to the year of the snake.

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Long weekend!

We had a nice long weekend, the weather has let up a little bit, and we had plans.

Joaquin and I rocked OMSI for an epic visit on Friday.  Thank you so much to Linda and Matt for the tickets and Thanks also to Ray for showing the girls such a great afternoon (and morning... all darn day really) filled with walks to hot chocolate, play time, and twin jelly cats!
 First we saw the Arctic in IMAX, which was pretty amazing and a more than a bit worrisome.  We followed up with a trip into the Blueback submarine, which was pretty crazy.  J and I may have been a bit susceptible to the jests by the tour guide and are certain we found the 8-year old they lost in the sub.
 We finished big, by going through the exhibits, seeing all sorts of cool bugs and reptiles, and spent a good chunk of time on this machine... "earning" some strawberries.  This cool exhibit that allows you to see how many calories you can burn.  We started going for a chocolate bar, until Mom pointed out that at our pace it would take about 8 hours, so we gladly settled for a half cup of strawberries (26 calories), and it took us 29 minutes...
 Yep, we hogged the machine for a half-hour, and two very sweaty kids

and a trip to the grocery store later we got to enjoy that half cup of strawberries (well, I think we consumed considerably more than that in the end).  

Saturday, we headed to Astoria and Ft. Stevens beach.  It was a great visit and a lovely day. 
  Plus, did I mention the cool shipwreck? 
 It was totally cool to play on and watch the waves come in under your feet.
 and dreaming of days at sea...
 Mom and I had a great time walking around on the beach
 I moved loads of driftwood, to make a little fort for Grace and Dad to dig in.

and spent time myself digging holes and making sand balls with Grace.

 Who gave everyone helping her pretty specific directions... "first, you get your hands very messy like this".
 Then explained where to find the best sand for balls... like snow balls but with sand.
 See, then you pound them down with your buckets...
 She pretty much settled right in and couldn't be moved for the afternoon.
well, until the pirates showed up
 Ahoy, what's that you said?

... Arrrrrrrr....

Watching them battle, then bury their treasure and put up their flag (no pictures, we were spying from a greater distance at that point), was a pretty cool way to leave the beach... we now know where to dig for Gold next time we visit.

Today I was perusing the National Geographic and was inspired by an article on soccer balls that kids in Africa would make out of whatever they could find, and tried my hand at making my own ball too.  Turned out pretty well, and held up for some good kicking around the yard in the morning. After Mom got back from some work, we let Dad go brew beer with his pals and we headed off to the zoo!

 Baby elephant Lily was born in November and we hadn't seen her yet.  She is so cute and maybe a little tired, or silly, but kept lying down under her Mom's feet.  Her little feet were so adorable!  We had a more surgical visit to the zoo, with a specific agenda.
 Polar bears, Penguins and Elephants... though we did manage working in an elephant ear and soem fun in the sculpture garden.

 We had a blast with the penguins.  We both have been studying the arctic and antarctic so have been learning about polar bears and penguins.
 Though these awesome penguins (Humboldt Penguins) were from Peru, quite the distance from the South Pole, but pretty great swimmers none the less.
 On the way home, we had to pick some things up at the art supply store, so Mom talked us into walking down to her favorite patisserie and we all got some yummy treats.
All in all a pretty awesome way to end a great weekend!  I knew February was going to be great.