Sunday, February 23, 2014

More Mushrooms

Compared to most weeks, it's been kind of slow around here.  It could have been more exiting, but the Portland Public School ended up not having a teacher's strike.   If that had happened Owen would have had three extra days off this week and I'm sure plenty of new adventures to report.

Anyway, it's been so slow around here the biggest news we have is the second harvest of Owen's shitake mushroom log.

We didn't get quite as many as the first harvest, but that just meant they had more room to grow.  Don't they look pretty?

 Owen is a very proud fungus farmer.  We ended up eating them in a cream sauce over homemade tagliatelle pasta.  Yum! Hopefully we can get a couple more harvest out of this log before it's finished.

Today we did manage to have a play date with Esmé and Joaquin.  We played all afternoon at their house while Dad made beer with his friends at our house.

When we got home Mom and Owen went out and did their daily jog.  After their jog, they decided it would be nice to take Scooter for a walk.  I went with them and we ended up jogging too.  In the end, I jogged my first whole mile. Owen was super great in encouraging me and promised me a sticker and to draw me a picture if I made it a whole mile!  Once I decided it was really fun and that I could do-it, he also promised that if I made it to a marathon this year he would buy me an ice-cream sundae with his own money and draw me as many pictures as I wanted!  After spending most of the weekend needling each-other Mom was so pleased to see us encouraging each-other.

Sunday, February 16, 2014


Happy Valentine's Day!  
We sure do know how to celebrate!  We wrapped up Chinese New Year with some deferred celebrations with friends.  Mom and Linda got to go to the Chinese Garden for a night-time lion and dragon dance during their lantern festival.  
 Mom was impressed by the decorations and all of the lights on both the Lion and
 on the dragon!  The performers were great, and the garden was all decked out with glowing lanterns and floating, glowing lilies.

 It was a lovely evening.

 Happy Year of the Horse!
 Grace got a new dress for Valentine's day and we both rocked some awesome new goggles.
 Can't wait for Hawaii!

I brought home my giant box of Valentines and extra super Giant love-bug... the biggest in my class.  It's a worm, which explains its lack of legs.  Mrs. D. did spend a lot of time packing up her class preparing for the potential teacher strike next week.  We hope hope hope they get their agreement sorted soon.  We had a really nice dinner made by Daddy of Scallops and celerac, some of Mom's favorites, Grace and I were a little less enthusiastic, but ate ours as well.

 I read a lot to Grace after picking up a new batch of books from the library.  We don't often have the patience to read with each-other, but did great on Valentine's day!
We tried HK cafe for a new place to enjoy Dim Sum... verdict... Winner. 
 Food was great, there was not wait (like our other go-to place Wong's King which we also love). 
 It was good to try a few new varieties of things, and the waitstaff was super nice.   
 Mom was pretty stoked to get to hold Baby Ellie for a bit of it and we loved entertaining her.

after dim-sum, Grace got to go back to ballet after a break for the snow, and was so happy to get back to-it.  For their recital in the spring, her class will be swan princesses, and she has to practice our happy flying and sad swan poses.  

After ballet, we were lucky to have our friends over and silk-screen some more year-of the horse shirts! 
 Alice and Henry did a great job!
 We had a lovely afternoon, in spite of a few issues sharing Grace was having, maybe three major activities in a day is pushing the limits a bit.
Today was much quieter, mostly hung out at home after Church.  
 We did finish up with some yummy Pizzas!  We love making our own Pizza, My favorite was pesto with mushrooms, and Grace just likes pesto and cheese.  The folks seemed pretty pleased with their fig, caramelized onions and goat-cheese topped with fresh argula.  Yum.

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Snow-pocolypse 2014

Snowpocolypse day 1 (thursday):  Schools out early.  It only happens once or twice every few years in Portland, but we got snow.  We got between 4-6 inches (depending if you are talking to the Californian or the NYer), which  is enough to shut down everything.

Owen's school let him out early on Thursday, school stayed closed on Friday and we just found out that school is closed again on Monday.  The University was closed early on Thursday as well.  The busses were so delayed and packed that they weren't even picking people up, so Mom chose to walk home!  We dug out the snow-clothes and dusted off the sleds.

Snowpocolypse day 2:  Everyone (I mean the whole city) hunkered down to play in the snow.  There was lots of sledding down our hills that are conveniently graded from slow to fast.   Pretty much the whole city gave up.  But not us, we're having fun in the snow while it is here.   We made our first attempt at a snow-man, but it was pretty dry snow, so it is more of a snow-ghost that turned into a sledding ramp in our back-yard.

With the roads empty we didn't have far to go to find a good sledding hill.  We just walked up the hill from our house and sled down the street.

Snowpocolypse day 3:  heading out for food:

The chickens are not fans of the cold and snow, they barely came out of their coop.
Ballet was cancelled, we cancelled our dim-sum and silk-screening plans.

We took a walk into town for some food and for a fun excursion.  We saw more people walking than cars on the road.

Owen pulled me most of the way to Laughing Planet and Dad pulled us both on the way back.

Snow ball fight!

Dad designed these awesome horses so even though we cancelled the dim sum and no one was able to came here to do some printing so we did it ourselves

Scooter and I spent a lot of time getting cozy near the warm air vents in between trips out in the snow.

 Owen and I worked on making a snow man a couple times over the weekend.  The first day the snow was too dry and didn't stick, but on Saturday it had warmed up just enough that we finally were able to build our snowman.

Dad helped put the parsnip nose and acorn eyes on.  The snow has been so fun!  We spent as much time as possible outside, sledding, walking, playing in the snow... such a treat!

Snopocolypse day 4:  Freezing rain. Church cancelled.   It has started to warm up a little bit, and rain ice down.  In an effort at being responsible neighbors, Dad shoveled our sidewalk just before the freezing rain started.  Now, we have the equivalent of an ice-rink in front of our house.  Luckily it started to defrost by mid-morning and we were able to shovel it off for safe passage.

It wasn't quite as fun to play outside, though beautiful to see everything with a thick layer of ice on it.  We turned our attention to more inside activities.

 like playing games.... Grace really loves the "higher or lower" number guessing game, however nobody is sure if she really get's it.... "32 (G:  Higher), 34 (G:  lower), a ha... 33! (long pause... G;  lower!))

and making cookies for Valentine's Day.
I hope everyone is staying warm and had as fantastic weekend with the weather as we had!

Sunday, February 02, 2014

Gung Hay Fat Choy!

 Chinese New Year has arrived!  Happy Year of the Horse everyone!  We wish you a prosperous new year.  We kicked ours off with a mushroom Harvest from my Shitake log that I got for Christmas this year.  We had quite a haul of really delicious shitakes that Dad braised for us with noodles!  We had a fairly quiet weekend.  Dad is recovering from a substantial cold that knocked him out for lots of the week.
 I am working on the talent show for the School event and totally have "Bear in there" by Shel Silverstein and rocked the first practice, Mom confirmed that I am easily the most audible person on stage, quite the presence.
 We did get out for a bit and headed out to play on Mt Tabor, where in addition to rocking the play-ground with Grace, I became known as the boy with the stick, that I carried all around and balanced precariously whenever I needed to run or climb.

 We did have a bit of rain this week, but got sunshine for most of the weekend and tried to spend at least a bit outside, even though it was chilly.
 After playing, Val and Ray invited us over for a yummy noodle dinner and a few hours of good hanging out time with friends.  Thanks guys!  We needed that!
Today was mellow, a little bit of time running errands, and mostly me and Grace playing forts and getting into the superbowl, though it is telling that I do not differentiate between "the hoop" and "the goal posts"  but it did make a pretty good Seahawks fan out of me, I was following the game pretty closely by the end. Mom and I are still running most days (we skip WuShu days) and made 75 miles (since Thanksgiving) this weekend, When we get to 100, we are treating ourselves with a big ol' cloud city banana split. Dad made an impressive dinner from the Pok Pok cookbook that we all enjoyed.