hey to all well just wanted to say that the s...

December 31, 2005 by Jenny in Jenny

hey to all well just wanted to say that the snow day was the best ever...i hope all had fun, the people that were cold need to go to googwill and get some good snow gear. Well x-mas was great and sadie we all ready miss u. well the boys and i are home for the next 4 days so if anyone would like to hang out give a gingle. For all that we dont see happy new years to all...the boys and i are going to have a party at home with video's and hot choc..so all are inviteted.we wish happy new years to all ..and much love.

One more day until the new year

December 30, 2005 by Adam in Family

One more day until the new year. How quickly things have gone. Emma in particular has changed dramatically, going from a toddler to someone with a will of her own. She's very chatty and bright, loving to sing, dress up as a princess, and doing tea parties. Sam's new thing is reading, which he obsessively does everywhere he sees words. Graffiti in particular fascinates him, which will probably cause trouble some day.

Yesterday was the big snow expedition, which ended up being both fun and stressful. Jamie had many second thoughts about the trip, though we managed to make it to a snow park intact. The kids went crazy when they got to snow, tossing snowballs and running about. Virtually everyone was there, something nearly impossible to coordinate. Yet it happened, we had fun, and we returned home tired and cold.

Today has been fairly calm, mostly to counteract the last couple weeks of excitement. We went to Fred Meyers. Sam and I watched War of the Worlds. I think we'll spend the rest of our dreary day inside, playing with the kids. It's all good.

A quick posting this morning

December 28, 2005 by Adam in Family

A quick posting this morning. I'm actually at work at the moment, catching up with zillions of e-mails and such. I came in later than I expected as Emma was handed to me by a tired Jamie right before I left. Fortunately Emma was pretty exhausted too and just conked right out.

The last few days have been good. We've been playing with Sadie a lot, with Sam and I going to see the new Harry Potter movie with her yesterday. We've also been finishing up various house projects.

The bathroom is nearly completed. Jamie painted the medicine cabinet and I painted the walls. I think we have one more visit from the construction folks to seal the tiles and we're basically done.

One of Jamie's Christmas presents was a small LCD television for the kitchen. Yesterday the cable guy arrived to put in an outlet. The wall mount arrived via mail as well, and I quickly put it up on the wall. Now she can cook and watch old movies at the same time, plus the kids can watch their shows while eating breakfast.

I'm taking the next couple days off still. I think tomorrow we're going to try to find some snow, perhaps heading towards Willamette Pass. We'll see how it turns out.

The perfect Christmas, except that Hanni was ...

December 27, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

The perfect Christmas, except that Hanni was ill and
couldn't make it for Christmas dinner. Sadie and I started dinner in the morning, and Seraph joined us about 9:30. Sadie did the last couple of hours of cooking while Bob, Anna and I went to see
Aunt Thea and Ron in the afternoon. Then home to lots of presents and good food. God bless us all, everyone, and stand up for peace and fairness.

I'm playing at Adam's with Sam

December 26, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

I'm playing at Adam's with Sam. We're making up a pirate song which goes a little like this: It's hard to be a pirate, you never get to play/ you're always working on the ship all day/ and when you get some booty, you spend it all on grog/ when you wake up in the morning, they call you scurvy dog/ it's hard to be a pirate, a-slaving on the seas/ always working on the deck a-swabbing on your knees. I'm having a great time, obviously.

Merry Christmas, everyone

December 25, 2005 by Adam in Family

Merry Christmas, everyone. I'm up before everyone else and we will likely be heading south soon after breakfast. The final Christmas celebration awaits.

Emma has had a great Christmas so far, and it...

December 25, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Emma has had a great Christmas so far, and it's still not over yet. Our first Christmas was on Monday, with just our little family. Emma kept asking "Did Santa come last night?" and we finally got to say that he had. I spoiled both the kids, and Emma had a great time with her Playdough, Magnetix, and especially the Leap Pad.

Today we had Christmas at Jim and Judy's house. She got all sorts of frilly girl clothes, including a pink flapper dress and Cinderella dress up accessories. I think she had two or three outfit changes while presents were being opened.

She also spent some time with her cousin Jackson (Jim's grandson). He was a bit rough, used to bigger kids, but soon enough Emma was giving him hugs and they were having a good time playing together.

Tomorrow's the final Christmas, at my mom's house. I suspect the pink presents aren't at an end quite yet.

My Resident Evil obsession continues

December 24, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

My Resident Evil obsession continues. I have a few complaints, mostly around some sections being so difficult that I have to play through a few times before I can succeed. Video games are made for video game professionals. Still, the number of save points sprinkled about keeps the stress to a minimum. This is in stark contrast to Metroid Prime, where I sunk 30 minutes to make it through a tough boss fight, only to die on the way to a save point with my health critically low.

I don't think I'll ever go completely for consoles. PC games have lots of advantages, such as patches, mods, and greater capabilities.

My current PC game is Civilization 4, which Sam and I were playing hotseat together. We were cooperating extensively, sharing our technology quite a bit. Eventually the unruly Japanese offended Sam, who had recently discovered gunpowder. A couple dozen turns later, he had rolled through the last Japanese city, renaming it to Conquored City 5.

It's Christmas Eve and we're all lounging abo...

December 24, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's Christmas Eve and we're all lounging about at Jim and Judy's house. Yesterday morning we went off to OMSI and had a good time. The kids loved it, especially the first thirty minutes with nearly no one there. Two hours later we were all a bit frazzled, but the memories were worthwhile.

Later in the day, Josh, Dave, and Kirsten arrived. The kids and grandparents took the Max to downtown Portland to see the lights while the rest of us went for dinner.

All very pleasant.

Update: The guests have left and the presents put away. Today was mostly about the Christmas party, with lots of food and people hanging about the house.

I ate far too many chocolate covered espresso beans. Emma got tons of princess clothes, mostly in the pink and frilly category. Now we're all tuckered out and ready to return home.

We made it to Portland, safe and sound

December 23, 2005 by Adam in Family

We made it to Portland, safe and sound. The trip up was fairly grueling, with the kids becoming increasingly wild as we got closer to Portland. Jamie keeps giving me a hard time about setting up odd contraptions to let the kids watch movies, but I grow weary of the "I hate you"'s and back seat flailings. I think I have the equipment to set up a Gamecube in the back, which I might have to do on the way back.

I woke up at 4:30 this morning, which is early even for me. I think I'll be taking the kids to OMSI while they're still fresh. Jamie's slipping off to surprise her dad this afternoon. Jim and Judy are taking the kids downtown to see the lights, letting Dave, Kirsten, Jamie, and I to have a quiet dinner together. Should be nice.

Yesterday seemed quite pleasant, somewhat low...

December 21, 2005 by Adam in Family

Yesterday seemed quite pleasant, somewhat lower key than the rest of the vacation so far. Mostly I hung out with the kids as usual. Jamie gave me a blissful hour to myself after she took Emma off to Jerry's to pick up some paint. The worker guys returned, refinishing the bathtub and making it look brand new. The bathroom is really looking nice, with only a few things left to do.

Continuing our traditional week-long Christmas (dare I say Christmukah?), we opened up my dad and Yayoe's gifts. Emma loved her Cinderella doll and Sam spent the morning putting together his Dino Attack Lego set. Jamie poured over the book of desserts, which I promptly forbade her to cook from (a vow that will be quickly broken, I suspect).

Towards the end of the day, we sent the kids over to Dave's house to be entertained by the trio of Dave, Josh, and Kirsten. Jamie and I cooked together for the first time in ages, enjoying our yummy mushroom enchiladas while watching The Island which Angie lent us. It was wonderful.

Today we're getting ready to head out to Portland tomorrow. Sam's friend John is over. Jamie's heading out to Pat's for a Christmas party. Life's good.

Yesterday was our family Christmas

December 20, 2005 by Adam in Family

Yesterday was our family Christmas.

It started the night before as I turned on lights, put the presents under the tree, and filled the stockings. When seven o'clock rolled around the next morning, I ran out to Metropol to return with assorted pastries and muffins. I heard the kids moving about upstairs, so I cuddled in bed with everyone until the excitement was too much.

They dug into the stockings, loving some rather unexpected toys. Sam really liked his pirate MegaBlock toy, especially a plastic pirate coin which instantly turned into a game. Emma carried about her Barbie Farytopia coloring book as if it were a real Barbie. Eventually we moved into the real presents after the grown-ups got their coffee.

Sam liked his new Gamecube games and Emma liked her playdough. Jamie was excited about her new food processor. I got some new shoes, though I need to get the size adjusted. Dorothy gave us scarves which ended up being worn the entire day. All-in-all, it was a good haul and lots of fun for the kids.

Jamie went off deliver presents to friends and I played with the kids until noonish. It was a little rough, with Emma having a melt-down about wanting to wear her pink dancing dress. It took me a good five minutes to calm her down before she could even articulate what the problem was.

For the afternoon, Sadie and my dad arrived to help me make apple butter. I assigned my dad to play a new game with Sam, which he was ecstatic about, rolling dice and moving tiny figures about on a hexagonal board. Sadie and I chatted and did a lousy job at following the recipe, though I think it finally worked out.

As the day wrapped up, we tried to keep our normal routine. There was dinner, baths, and stories at bedtime. Everyone was pretty exhausted and went to bed fairly easily.

It's been a rather exciting weekend

December 19, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's been a rather exciting weekend. So much has been going on, it's hard to know where to start.

Yesterday was spent trying to get things done, making Sam a bit disappointed that I wasn't playing with him as much as he'd like. Sadie and Isa came over to play for a bit, and then we all went to see the new Narnia movie. It was good, though perhaps not great, a little longer than I expected. The actress who played Lucy was very good, as was Mister Tumnus and the beaver family.

I stayed up late working on my Christmas presents, going to bed sometime before midnight.

Today seemed even more jammed back. This morning Jamie went shopping with her friend Pat. The kids and I played non-stop while I continued my Christmas projects. At noon we went to my mom's to make gingerbread houses with my mom, Sadie, and Isa. Sam and Isabel had a good time playing together. The kids had a great time making the little houses while I chatted with Sadie as much as I was able. Afterwards, Dave and Josh came over. The kids loved playing with Josh, who seems even taller than before. Around three, we sent Sam home with them while I snuck by the store for stocking stuffers and ingredients for tomorrow's project with Sadie.

And now, towards the end of a long day, I'm at Dave's house with the kids. Pretty soon Jamie will pick us up after visiting with Angie. Tomorrow is our family's Christmas, so I've got to get everything ready for tomorrow. Hopefully I can make it a semi-magical experience for the kids, especially Emma who's so excited for Christmas.

Every night at seven o'clock, the kids get du...

December 16, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Every night at seven o'clock, the kids get dumped into the bath. Emma in particular likes bath time. She'll happily fill up old shampoo bottles, draw in the mist on the shower doors, or see how much she can bother her brother. Last night I took a few pictures of her aqua-play session, mostly so I don't forget what it's like.

Emma's been really getting into the spirit of Christmas this year. We were driving around town and hearing Emma say, "Look! Look! Look! Look! Christmas lights!" Yesterday she had her hands clasped together, an intense look on her face, whispering, "I wish . . . I wish . . . I wish for Christmas."

It's Mocha Friday here at work

December 16, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday here at work. It's also the last day before my semi-two-week vacation. I've got a long list of things to do, but I'm trying hard not to put anything into live or make any serious changes before I leave.

Sadie was supposed to come into town last night, but she ended up stuck in Portland. I guess Seraph will be hauling her down, hopefully this weekend sometime. I can't wait to see her.

The picture for today is a typical scene in the Miller-Mellor household. After I feed Emma her bowl of cereal, I bring her upstairs where the kids get read a story by Jamie and tucked into bed. Emma and Sam have different reading preferences, so it's a bit of a challenge at times. Jamie's been reading Little House on the Prarie to Sam, having long discussions about European colonialism and the relations with the native Americans. Jamie reports that he's brilliant and insightful, which is a good sign.

Tomorrow begins a couple weeks of hanging out with family and hopefully a bit of relaxation. I'm hoping for some time playing in the snow, watching some movies, playing some games, and visiting with folks. Plus cocoa. There's something special about cocoa on a cold winter day.

The grand bathroom remodel is in full swing

December 15, 2005 by Adam in Family

The grand bathroom remodel is in full swing. The contractor working on the house is a really nice guy and Jamie is quite happy with him. The walls and floor have been ripped out. Yesterday he put down new flooring and today the tile will be going down. When I asked Jamie what the next project is, she just grinned and wouldn't say anything.

Jamie and the kids slept in until eight o'clock yesterday, so Sam didn't make it to school. My mom even went out to watch Sam sing in his holiday musical, but he sadly wasn't there. I think Jamie's been feeling guilty about it.

I have another work day of meetings lined up, making it the third one in a row. The first day was actually pretty productive since it was just focused on a small group of us and we had actual things we wanted to accomplish. Yesterday was far more fluffy, mostly about team vision and such. I don't have particularly high hopes about today. Ah, well. At least tomorrow is Friday and I'm taking a bunch of time off work.

Last night I took the family to a team dinner. The kids were in pretty good behavior while there, but they were incredibly wacky afterwards. Jamie's frustration level was quite high towards the end of the night. I ended up putting the kids to bed, which is a rarity for me.

Tonight my mom comes to babysit the kids while Jamie and I go for a walk to look at Christmas lights. Sadie also arrives late tonight, which excites me to no end.

I'm also trying to arrange for some high scho...

December 14, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

I'm also trying to arrange for some high school friend time this break. This is the crazy run-down of what my old pals are doing:

Conor Reidy is getting his JD from UVA.
Kyle Lamb renounced consulting, moved home and is taking pre-med classes at the U.
Meghan McMorrow is also back in the Lane County working with Pier One.
Sarah Wheeler is still selling the best vegan lube in the nation.
Alan Bergland is getting a doctorate at Brown studying mosquitos.
Morgan Munro is dating a very special South Eugene High School alum who saved me from failing pre-calc my junior year.
Katie Freund is using all her debate team skills with Earthjustice in DC.
Sara Spettel has yet another dog and is still happily married to a pastry chef (and who wouldn't be?).
Marshall Clement is living it up in Brooklyn and doing justice reinvestment.
Jenny Minnity Shippey's name still has that musical internal rhyme, which she is using to her advantage getting a masters in creative writing.
Jim Bergland is engaged to be married.
Luke fired himself and took a trip to Baja Mexico.
Ashley Harris-D is researching allergies and asthma in children at National Jewish Medical and Research center in Denver, CO.

And I thought my life was exciting!

Sue I'll gladly come along!!!! Basketball, Sc...

December 13, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Sue I'll gladly come along!!!! Basketball, Science Factory, roller skating, gingerbread houses, WOW! sounds right up my alley. Sounds like a wonderful time!

On a more serious note, all blessings to everyone for a loving Christmas and many good tidings for the New Year.

Hi, from mom, with some highly flexible sched...

December 13, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi, from mom, with some highly flexible scheduling
Thursday at 4:30, Bob and I will babysit Sam and Emma
for a couple hours, if he's in town. He is taking Anna and Arik to Seattle to visit his sister for a few days, and that's not yet scheduled.
Thursday at 10 pm, I'll pick up Sadie in Eugene.
Friday, Sadie can call - sleep catch up, breakfast at New Day, whatever suits her
Friday night - the Public Defender's party.
Saturday - The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. I think
this is Seraph's last day of work.
Sunday - Kids Day at my house, Gingerbread houses to decorate, and I hope for help putting up my tree and lights.
Everyone is welcome, kid or not
Sometime during vacation I'd like to take Dez and Sam (if he'd like to give it a go) to an Oregon basketball game, and
take kids to the Science Factory or maybe roller skating.
12/25 Christmas at my house. We'll open presents around 4 and eat around 5. Let me know what you would like to make,
or if the times are terrible.
As you know, all the times and plans are totally negotiable.
Many hugs, the mom

Anna and I are getting ready to go on our res...

December 13, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Anna and I are getting ready to go on our respective holidays, madly brainstorming the re-use of those last crusty Thanksgiving leftovers. Work is slowing down, and I'm spending my waning days at work looking over grant funding for a community project that a few community members and I are dreaming up. Nothing special, but a nice change of pace.

I also finished making my secret snow monster gifts for my secret people. As a childless aunt, I have more freedom to take that "personal touch" to whatever creative place I want to without robbing a child of their dream Moon Boots or Ultimate Princess Pack. That's what parents are for.

And as for Emma's urge to say thanks, I too have been satisfying a similar urge at home. Anna lets me hold hands with her and wish all the migrant workers who picked our vegetables the best of luck. I think it makes us more mindful eaters.

Poor Emma's been sick these last couple days

December 13, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Poor Emma's been sick these last couple days. When I came home from work yesterday, all she wanted to do was either be held or watch cartoons. Towards the end of the evening she perked up, though. She really wanted to eat a gingerbread man and after dinner, she finally got her wish. Instantly she was happy Emma again, exclaiming such joyous phrases as "His head popped off!"

After dinner, the kids and I piled into the bathtub for a cramped but amusing good time. The highlights involved putting on soap bubble beards and doing Santa impressions. Sam was also interested in the various styles of facial hair, from goatees to soul patches.

Hopefully Emma feels better soon. She missed out on school yesterday, which she really loves. Hopefully she can be back this Friday. The one thing we've noticed is that there's a new ritual she wants to do before each meal. She wants everyone to hold hands and say "Thanks!" Ah, the joys of church-based preschools, even of the subdued variety.

In response to Seraph, a funny little thing I...

December 12, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

In response to Seraph, a funny little thing I found about the 40-hour work week. This is from the people who read what the people and McSweeny's bring you (http://www.mcsweeneys.net/links/openletters/12workday.html):


June 13, 2005

Dear Eight-Hour Workday,

Before I was hired at a 9-to-5 job, I had no idea how long you were. I skipped along blissfully through life, never questioning the sanctity of each moment. The phrase "9 to 5" was merely a metaphor for "people who have real jobs." Now that I have arrived in this world of suits and scheduling, I know the truth. Eight hours is an eternity.

I have decided that, with the amount of people in this country working eight hours a day, this society should be much farther ahead that it is. We should have flying cars that are fueled by used cooking oil from McDonald's. We should have a creative and well-funded education system. We should have universal health care.

What if you devoted eight hours a day to something like origami? To working out? To learning? You'd be the smartest, buffest paper folder this world has ever seen.

Granted, when we say "eight hours of work," we don't really mean eight hours. There's the time it takes to take off your coat and say hello to co-workers. There's walking from the desk to the water cooler. There are at least seven or eight bathroom breaks a day. And we mustn't forget sustenance. Shoot, when you think about it, an eight-hour day really comes down to a good four hours and 54 and a half minutes, give or take.

I guess I'm ignoring part of the equation here, and that is that, as human beings, we are not capable of concentrating on anything longer than The Legend of Bagger Vance, let alone eight hours. If a writer sat at a computer and worked on a novel for eight hours nonstop, she would have a whole lot of crazy in the end (not that I would know). There are limitations on the human mind and body that must be addressed. If a person needs a Minesweeper break every hour on the hour, then, by God, it's about time for the next game.

I've strayed. The crux of everything I've said here today is that eight hours is a freaking long time. In my day so far, I've e-mailed several people, applied for a credit card, done a few things for work, and written this letter. I still have four and a half hours to go. I guess that means I still have several bathroom breaks to cash in.

Olivia Roth

I've finished the first of my finals, and now...

December 12, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

I've finished the first of my finals, and now there are only four more to go! At this point I'm desperately looking forward to them all being over Wednesday afternoon, then three days of back-breaking work at the supply store, then I'M FREE (well, for a few weeks at least).
How I crave the boredom of a 60 hour a week desk job. One where I never get to express a creative or original thought, and only have a dozen or so people telling me how to do my work. Well, if this apparel thing doesn't work out, Pres. Bush's job will be open in a few years!
We're all really excited to head to Eugene over the break, and especially to see Sadie. We'll be going back and forth a few times so the poor cat doesn't starve, but all in all we should be there for a considerable chunck of time.

Sigh, another Monday

December 12, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sigh, another Monday. Soon enough I'll be braving the freezing weather to get to work. This is going to be an odd week for me, with lots of team meetings and hardly any time to get real work done. To top it off, I'm going to be taking time off for most of the end of the year, so I can already envision work piling up. Ah, well.

Sunday was both productive and relaxing. Sam and I managed to get all the bathroom things done. Sam in particular was extremely useful, unscrewing bolts and helping me drain out the water from the toilet. Somehow it's less disgusting when there's two of you cheerfully making jokes about it. We hauled the toilet into the bedroom and then took the sink downstairs. There was some minor spackling and then it was declared finished by Jamie.

We bundled up and drove down to the river path. Everything was still frosty, so we tried hard to keep the kids warm. We made our way to the odd concrete sculptures, which they enjoyed playing in considerably. After our adventure, we headed to Barry's for soup and muffins, then back home.

The rest of the day was deliberately spent relaxing. The kids and I played a fair amount. Jamie gave me some time to myself, mostly spent playing Resident Evil 4 and creeping myself out. All-in-all, it was a very pleasant end to a very pleasant weekend.

Yesterday was a mini-Christmas for me, with R...

December 11, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

Yesterday was a mini-Christmas for me, with Resident Evil 4 for the Gamecube and Civilization 4 showing up in the mail. Playing RE4 was a bit of a challenge, but I managed to hook up head phones so I could play while the kids were asleep. I only played for a few minutes, but the tone is distinctly creepy. I ended up having scary dreams about a haunted village. My only complaint so far is that I completely suck at aiming with the Gamecube controller. I keep missing at point blank range.

I've been having better luck with Metroid Prime. There's something simple and special about getting power-ups and doing boss fights. It's occasionally frustrating in a "can't save everywhere" sort of way, but I've managed to work around it so far.

Finally, I played Civilization 4 last night. It's very similar to the previous ones, yet polished to a shiny finish. I'm also falling into my normal bad habits, ignoring the military until a nearby civilization decides I'm easy picking. Right now I'm fighting off the primitive Romans, who actually built up a significant army.

It's a chilly Sunday morning here at the Mill...

December 11, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's a chilly Sunday morning here at the Miller Estate. Sam's playing with Legos, Emma's watching a show, and Jamie's taking a shower. Soon I'll get Sam dressed and we'll start working on the bathroom, taking out the toilet and sink, as tomorrow the worker guy comes to completely remodel it.

Yesterday was fairly low-key. I mostly hung out with the kids, managing to steal some R&R time along the way. John came over in the morning and he and Sam played for a good long while. Jamie went to Victoria's party last night, returning at a quite reasonable hour.

Maybe we can hit the library today, or perhaps continue hanging out with the kids. There's about three movies out that I'd love to see in the theater, but that might be somewhat difficult to manage.

Most of the time I find myself cheerfully hea...

December 09, 2005 by Adam in Adam

Most of the time I find myself cheerfully heading off to work. I like what I do, enjoy the people I work with, and I grudgingly admit that watching the kids for long stretches of time can be a little exhausting.

But something's happened lately.

The last few weeks, the kids have been more interesting to hang out with. Emma doesn't require quite as much constant vigilance to prevent bodily injury. Sam's usually cheerful and polite. Work has been a bit crazier than usual. To top it off, there's that lure of holiday spirit and promise of hot beverages after spending time outside in the cold weather.

I'm going to try really hard to take a lot of time off, starting the week before Christmas and going through most of the week after. Maybe we can gather all my siblings and their kids together and head off to play in the snow. I'd love to make jam with Sadie one day. And hopefully I can spend some fairly quiet days with my family, doing nothing of great importance.

It's Mocha Friday, though I'm trying to wait ...

December 09, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, though I'm trying to wait to get one until my friend Jim arrives at work. His wife just had twin babies, who are staying at the hospital for a bit longer. His job is to deliver milk each day, so he's promised to swing by for our normal Friday coffee run.

Work has been surprisingly busy as of late. I spent yesterday trying to debug a coworker's code, which is always interesting. I have another import process that doesn't work properly for some odd reason. I'm very much looking forward to taking some time off.

Yesterday evening was a little different. Sam was at a friend's house and Jamie took Emma off to put her to sleep in the car. With an empty house and a work-frazzled brain, I decided to spend some quality time with our new Gamecube and played a little Metroid Prime. Soon enough Sam was next to me while Emma slept away in the car and we were exploring a strange alien world from the comfort of our couch.

Jamie went off to have dinner with my mom and I spent the evening distracting Emma from the fact that she was gone. I did fairly well, using a variety of silly faces and games to keep her occupied.

The weekend looks busy already, with assorted events filling the days. Hopefully I can sneak in a little rest and relaxation too.

As the Christmas season crushes us, I thought...

December 08, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

As the Christmas season crushes us, I thought you might be interested in this website, which chronicles quite a few companies' labor and environmental practices: http://www.responsibleshopper.org/

I'm plowing through the week, waiting for students to give in to finals and then disappear for winter break. Until then, they keep me on my toes. And I love them for it. But as I was hauling 96 bottles of "wellness" odwallas to a refrigerated space for tutor thank-you brain-food bags, I wanted (just a little) for a more consistently paced job.

I got through it by singing really loud to an Artichoke song that goes like this:

do you know Mary Anning? born on a southern shore/her father Richard was a cabinetmaker
and Richard died too early and left the Annings poor/but lucky Mary Anning found an icthyosaur

by circa 1820 she ran a fossil store/she put the bones together for the collectors
and science was the province of men of noble birth/but I'd take Mary Anning over those stuffed white shirts
ancient life that sleeps as fossil

she was walking the cliffs on her own by the sea/she was wondering if there were shapes underneath
there were men with their cash but that's not what it took/she could read every line on the ground like a book
she assembled the bones of the past in cement/and she sold them in town for a couple of pence
and she showed all the men how the bones could connect/though at first some would scoff they would grow to respect

(repeat first verse)

The pile of files on my desk is finally dwind...

December 07, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

The pile of files on my desk is finally dwindling slightly,
and I hope the things left will be minimal when Sadie arrives. I'm just about ready to go to my babysitting gig at
Adam and Jamie's. The weekend was fun; I watched Dez march in the Springfield Christmas parade (and a CHRISTMAS parade it was. Nary a "Happy Holiday" to be seen or heard, except for a large Happy Holiday sign on the gun turret of a military vehicle. It's the new diversity!) Adam and Jamie fed us dinner Sunday night, and we went to see Good Night and Good Luck at the movies.

Emma crawled off the bed last night, burrowin...

December 06, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Emma crawled off the bed last night, burrowing under the covers until she ran out of bed. Soon enough she was on the floor, crying, with a bruise on her forehead.

Fortunately she's quite rugged and was smiling and laughing a few minutes later. Today she came to visit me at work, charming my coworkers and having a chocolate muffin with me at Starbucks. I'm looking forward to taking some time off from work these holidays and spending some time with her.

I admit it

December 05, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

I admit it. I'm a console boy. For many years, I've stuck with computers, passing by the PS2s, the XBoxes, and the like. My last console was an Atari 2600, which played Pong.

Now I have a Gamecube in our house and I'm trying to figure out what to do with it. It's was primarily for Sam, who seems to somewhat enjoy it. He's still adjusting to the controls and the twitch-based requirements and lack of ability to save anywhere.

Still, it's interesting. I've been playing Metroid Prime a bit, which is a different experience than on a PC. The controller is different, especially how it vibrates when you're hit or fall. It's also strange sitting on the soft couch, staring at the big screen.

I treated myself to Resident Evil 4, which is supposedly the best game of last year. I'm not sure how I'll play it. Most of my game playing happens after the kids are tucked into bed. It wouldn't do to have them trying to fall asleep while the screams of monsters lull them into dreamland.

The weekend is coming to a close

December 05, 2005 by Adam in Family

The weekend is coming to a close. Jamie's making dinner for my mom and Bob. The kids are watching Little Bear on tv.

Saturday was fairly typical. We all went to library in the morning. The afternoon is a bit of a mystery, as no one can remember what we did. I do recall putting Emma to sleep while driving around in the car. After dinner, we all watched the Polar Express.

Today the big event was getting a Christmas tree. Jamie went out with Angie while the kids and I went to the park this morning. I don't think anyone was used to the cold, as Emma refused to wear her hat and gloves, and quickly became painfully chilly. Sam complained that his jeans with holes in the knees were too cold as well. Soon enough, though, we were back home and drinking hot chocolate.

The tree trip took a good hour or so, with Sam helping out with cutting and hauling. Emma had fun watching the chickens that lived on the farm (along with the people who rent it from my mom). On the ride back, Emma fell asleep, leaving Sam and I to play together. When she awoke, we decorated part of it.

I had a minor fit of exhaustion and begged Jamie for some time to myself. I took a bath and read, and have since mostly joined the ranks of the living. Fortunately tomorrow I return to work and can hopefully get a little rest.

PAtrick is standing here playing with some we...

December 05, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

PAtrick is standing here playing with some weird plastic thing that you can put on your heas and it looks like a spiked do. How can I get him to do his homework? Any suggestions? We are beyond rewards, threats, etc....

Well, I finally finished up Fable

December 04, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

Well, I finally finished up Fable. The overall concept was neat, the idea that you start as a boy and you change your look dramatically depending on your outlook and profession. It was fun changing hair styles and getting tattoos. Unfortunately the main plotline was merely okay. I get a little tired of the standard save the world and avenge my parents sort of quests. I've lost count of the number of worlds I've saved and parents I've avenged.

Once the game is over, you can still wander around. I decided to get married and settle down. Since I had Legendary renown and was as attractive as possible, I grabbed a woman at random, pumped my arm a few times, handed over a few choice gifts, and got married. Here's a picture of the loving couple outside my newly purchased home. If you're curious, yes that is a pimp hat I'm wearing. I'll let you do the Google search on your own to find out how I got it.

Oh the joys of snow

December 04, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Oh the joys of snow. While Anna and I had planned on making a cuboidal snow robot, this little bundle of joy is what appeared.

As promised, here are the most beautiful sh...

December 04, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

As promised, here are the most beautiful shrunken apple heads that Williamstown has ever seen. They were a big hit between Anna and me on Halloween, although a passing trick-or-treater's mom did ask if they were actually apples. I like to interpret that as an expression of delight and awe at some fine-looking heads.

I have in fact found a nice situation for Emm...

December 03, 2005 by Jamie in Emma

I have in fact found a nice situation for Emma at St. Mary's Episcopal church downtown. There are 2 nice ladies who take care of kids on Mondays and Fridays from 9:30-1:00 so their beleaguered mommies (or daddies) can escape to the dentists office or the grocery store unmolested. There is a big gym with lots of riding toys and playhouses, so Emma loved it. There are only 4 or 5 kids currently using the service, so I loved it. The first day she decorated a Christmas tree and painted a picture in lovely shades of pink and lavender and was fed a healthy lunch homecooked by one of the grandmothers who attend the church. She didn't cry while I was gone....and was heartbroken when we had to leave. What could be more wonderful?

Well, Jamie dropped Emma off at this new day ...

December 02, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Well, Jamie dropped Emma off at this new day care for the morning. After sticking around for a bit, she told Emma "I'm going for a walk." Jamie returned a few minutes later to find that Emma was doing just fine, so she wandered over to my office and chatted with me for a bit.

So, it looks like we have a winner. That means that most mornings Jamie will be able to have at least some time to herself.

This morning, Anna heard that her granmother ...

December 02, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

This morning, Anna heard that her granmother passed away. We had expected it, but had a little quiet morning because of it noetheless. Hopefully, all of Anna's mom's family will still gather in Phoenix every Christmas, even withiout its matriarch. It snowed all day today.

In other Anna news, she's playing fiddle for a Celtic dance group in our fancy new theatre this evening. Should be fun.

This is the beautiful wreath that mom sent. She's the best.

December already

December 02, 2005 by Adam in Family

December already. Hard to believe. I'm still at home, visualizing my morning mocha.

It's been a busy week, with things happening nearly every evening and my days seeming more frantic than usual. I'll go in to work, planning on working on some project or another, only to find myself working on something completely different as the calls poured in.

Jamie and I had a nice Wednesday night, going out to Onsen's for some relaxing hot tub time. Last night I had the kids to myself. For awhile I was trying to play pretend some zombie game with Sam and Go, Diego, Go with Emma. I think tonight will be a repeat as Jamie's going off with Angie somewhere.

Hopefully this weekend will be somewhat more quiet. We need to start getting the bathroom ready for the contractor coming next week. I'm sure there's some Christmas-related activity that needs to be done, hanging up lights, for example. Ah, well, time for the shower and heading into work.

Happy Birthday Robbie! Isa promised him an e...

December 01, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Happy Birthday Robbie! Isa promised him an extra 10 days before she considered him "old", which is rather generous for her!
Hanni is coming up for the night, and we are all planning on going out to dinner after I finish work.
We had a threat of snow last night, and some places in the foothills got a dusting, but no major storm like the news networks were craving. While I wouldn't mind a little of the white stuff, I hope it holds off until my finals are complete. There's nothing worse then slugging loads of stuff through sleet and slush!

Hi, here I am back in Eugene after a very qui...

November 30, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi, here I am back in Eugene after a very quick Monday-after
noon-to-Bend, Wednesday-morning-return with Bob. An old buddy of his called and asked if he were interested in working for the same home builder, in Redmond, his friend worked for, so we drove over to talk with him. His interview was three and a half hours long, and the job does have components that Bob would enjoy. It would also be fun for me to go over and spend a few days at a time, but I wouldn't move there, especially when I finally am getting time to play with mi nietos y nietas.

For those of you who are following Sam's dent...

November 30, 2005 by Adam in Sam

For those of you who are following Sam's dental development, he's started getting his molars in. I haven't tried to take a picture yet, though it might be fun to attempt to stuff my camera in his mouth.

Anna's mother's favorite dessert to make, apa...

November 30, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Anna's mother's favorite dessert to make, apart from tart Oregon cherry pie, is caramel apples. Anna found the particular mother-approved caramel apple wrap brand a few months ago in our local supermarket, and we've been hording them ever since. On special occasions or when I'm not in the lady's favor, caramel apples are made. And since nothing else worth mentioning has happened in Williamstown, MA, let it be known, that we had apples last night, and I am again in the lady's good favor.

This isn't really my project, but Jamie's

November 30, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Projects

This isn't really my project, but Jamie's. Plus I'm not really doing much of the work. Still, I guess it falls under the category of "projects", so I might as well stick it here.

Jamie seems to start up some house remodel every few months. The last big one was repainting the house yellow. The next one is a bathroom remodel. Already she's picked out the tiles, sink, and bought an antique chandler. It sounds like the workers will descend upon the house in a few days, filling our home once again with tarps and dust.

Emma keeps growing up

November 30, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Emma keeps growing up. I'll pick her up and ask "why are you so heavy?" "I growed up!" she'll exclaim.

We moved Emma's bed into Sam's room a couple days ago. The first night was a little rough, with Jamie having to go in a few times during the night. Last night, though, both kids slept through the night without any trouble. Jamie had to go in at seven in the morning to wake them up and get them ready for school.

Jamie's also looking into a daycare style place where Emma could go from time to time. It's fairly short, about four hours long, and she can go any time during the week. We'll see how it goes.

Sam and Emma have been sharing a bedroom for ...

November 29, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sam and Emma have been sharing a bedroom for a couple nights now. It seems to be going generally pretty well. Sam's especially excited about it for some reason. Emma's doing okay with it, never excited to actually go to bed, but adjusting to the change.

Yesterday Sam was balking and doing the dishes and Emma told him that he better be good or she wouldn't sleep next to him. Sure enough, that motivated him to get the dishes done.

Last night was pretty quiet. Jamie went off to get her hair done and I played with the kids. Sam worked on his Neverwinter Nights game, Emma played on the Nick Junior site, and I acted as tech support. We took a break to make pizza, complete with cookie cutter animals to chew on. They ended up a little over done, unfortunately, and neither kid ate more than a few.

This morning while rummaging through the radi...

November 28, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

This morning while rummaging through the radio station's huge vinyl selection, I came across The Point soundtrack. The Point was a short animated film that Adam, one of his college girlfriends, and I watched in mom's basement when I was in grade school. Released in 1971, The Point is an animated feature about a boy with a round head who is banished from the land of Point, subsequently to go on a journey and sing a series of catchy and sad tunes about tolerance. As you can imagine, I was delighted and highlighted the record's narration and song on my show this morning. I am now whistling "Think about your troubles," which is so lovely that I've posted the lyrics below.

Sit beside the breakfast table/ Think about your troubles
Pour yourself a cup of tea/ Then think about the bubbles
You can take your teardrops/ And drop 'em in a teacup
Take them down to the riverside

And throw them over the side/ To be swept up by a current
Then taken to the ocean/ To be eaten by some fishes
Who were eaten by some fishes/ And swallowed by a whale
Who grew so old/ He decomposed, doo, doo, doo

He died and left his body/ To the bottom of the ocean
Now everybody knows/ That when a body decomposes
The basic elements/ Are given back to the ocean
And the sea does what it oughta

And soon there's salty water/ Not too good for drinking
'Cause it tastes just like a teardrop/ So they run it through a filter
And it comes out from a faucet/ And it pours into a teapot
Which is just about to bubble/ Now think about your troubles, now

The great Thanksgiving weekend has finally co...

November 28, 2005 by Adam in Family

The great Thanksgiving weekend has finally come to a close. It was pretty eventful, with all manner of family and other activities going on.

Friday was probably the most quiet of days. Jamie's dad and uncle came over in the morning and we hiked about Hendrick's park in the rain. In the afternoon, Jamie went for a walk with a friend while I played with the kids.

I took the kids swimming Saturday morning while Jamie made wreaths at my mom's house. Jim and Judy arrived around lunch time to give gifts and play with the kids. Dave and Kirsten arrived in the evening to do much of the same.

Sunday morning, we took another hike on Ridgeline trail. I'd been wanting to do it for quite some time, so I really had a good time. Sam seemed ecstatic, tromping through the mud and finding all sorts of crazy paths. Afterwards we did a quick change and headed to my mom's for a birthday party for Robbie. In the afternoon, a couple of Sam's friends came over for two hours of wild play time. Sam was pretty exhausted by the end.

Probably the biggest event of all was saved for bedtime. Emma has now moved her bed next to Sam's and our bedroom is once again quiet. It seems like another stage in life quietly passed by. I only heard Emma get up once, and settle herself back to sleep, though I suspect Jamie might have checked on her another time. It's funny how big these small things can be.

And a happy birthday to Sam! Love, Team...

November 25, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

And a happy birthday to Sam!

Team Superbad.

It continues to sprinkle this morning

November 25, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

It continues to sprinkle this morning. Here is me in front of the house this morning with the Miller family remedy and cure-all. Mmm... Coffee.

Like Adam, we made Challah for Thanksgiving! ...

November 25, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Like Adam, we made Challah for Thanksgiving! Here is our Challah and its suckling babe. Anna was at Thanksgiving, too.

Happy Thanksgiving! Anna, Noah, Leon, Katie a...

November 25, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Happy Thanksgiving! Anna, Noah, Leon, Katie and I had a great feast yesterday, and it even snowed for us.

Leon and Katie are staying at a local bed and breakfast all weekend, and Noah is staying in our guest room. It's a real treat to share Williamstown with them.

I hope you all are having a great rest! I miss you terriby and am so excited to have two weeks with you for Christmas

We had a grand Thanksgiving and Sam's birthda...

November 25, 2005 by Adam in Family

We had a grand Thanksgiving and Sam's birthday combination yesterday. It was quite busy, starting with bread making as soon as the kids woke up. Sam was especially fond of the challa bread, which involved a volcano-like yeast cauldara bubbling over the flour crater rim. That plus the cranberry bread gave everyone their carb load for the year.

Jamie's family began arriving around noon. Emma started getting pretty cranky in the early afternoon, so I drove her a few blocks until she fell asleep and then sat in the car for an hour or so. After she awoke, we rushed off to Yayoe's house, all the time Sam explaining how it was impossible for him to be late for his own birthday party.

It was great seeing everyone and the kids had a good time running around the house. There was birthday cake and presents, which made Sam quite happy. We returned home for Thanksgiving dinner and more presents. Sam opened up his Gamecube, which took awhile to figure out. I think one of the games is going to be too hard for him, though another should work out okay.

As for the next few days, I'm going to avoid shopping and just hang out with family. Maybe I can arrange for a hike to burn off a few of those Thanksgiving calories.

hi,wcweyonw, i'm hwew R SWB;S, WAITING TO GET...

November 25, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

hi,wcweyonw, i'm hwew R SWB;S, WAITING TO GET SOME GREAT PIE. AND I DON'T HAVE MY READING GLASSES ON. HAPPY THANKSGIVING~Friday Post-script This should have said, "I'm here at Deb's". After Thanksgiving at Lohring's and Yayoe's, we went over to have pie(s)-pumpkin and apple, at Bob's former wife's house, with her boyfriend Jeff and their friend, Ming, and of course, the kids. Everyone was in good spirits, and a good time was had by all. Love to all, and a thousand hugs to Massachusetts.

One more thing, not much of a holiday traditi...

November 23, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

One more thing, not much of a holiday tradition, and never
to be repeated..I'm bringing the software from my office and
asking you guys and Adam to sort it through. At some point Seraph, there was something you wanted. I think I have lots of Dick's, too. A thousand hugs, and Yayoe, I'll bring extra wine to make up for this.

And a Thanksgiving wish for those folks out in radioland -
for at least a moment over this holiday, find peace and love
with your family and friends. And try to ignore those $!**!!#% ninnies running our country these days. (Ohhh, whoops. Peace and love...peace and love...say it with me, People of Love.)

Happy Thanksgiving to one and all

November 23, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Happy Thanksgiving to one and all. Sounds like you guys are going to have a busy get together. Love, Bets and the boys

It's my sort-of Friday, the Wednesday before ...

November 23, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's my sort-of Friday, the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. I decided it was close enough and treated myself to a mocha. I'm looking forward to today being relatively quiet here at work. Many people are taking the day off, so hopefully the odd requests will be minimized.

Seraph brought up a question about the Christmas name draw. I think I'll be bringing the mystical box of names over to the Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow, with strict instructions from Jamie as to its proper use. So far I've picked Robbie and am busy assembling the entire collection of Britney Spears CDs and memorabilia for his gift. Fortunately he never reads this site, so I think the secret is safe.

Emma and I had a hysterical bubble bath last night. I need to upload the picture for it, but I'll describe it in the meantime. Emma was getting bored while bathing, so I hopped in and she suggested bubbles. Soon enough, she was applying globs of bubbles to my nose and declaring me a monster. She also gave herself a beard and exclaimed, "I'm Santa! Ho, ho, ho!" We called up Jamie who started laughing and took a few pictures.

See everyone tomorrow at Thanskgiving.

We head down to Eugene this afternoon/evening

November 23, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

We head down to Eugene this afternoon/evening. It will be nice to wee everyone, even if I have have an eye on homework throughout.
I heard word that the grand Christmas name drawing is going on, or has hppened. If so, we'd love to know who we picked.
I'm also getting excited about the winter break. It looks like I'll be able to take a full two weeks off. Even though I have some Senior collection planning to do, it will be nice to keep my own hours for a bit.
Love to all, see you soon.

Hi, I had a nice phone chat with Emma this mo...

November 22, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi, I had a nice phone chat with Emma this morning, describing to
her why Mischa is a bad kitty these days. I switched him from dry cat food to canned food, which he now likes way too much...so much that he comes up in the middle of the night and rubs those ticklish little whiskers across my nose and mouth so I'll get up and feed him. Or maybe he just wants me to stop snoring...

How about a Christmas tree trip to the farm on Friday morning? Also, I'm going to make up wreaths in advance, and thought a wreath decorating soiree on Saturday morning for an hour might be fun, around tenish. Tenish, anyone? All and sundry are welcome. Yayoe and Hanni, this definitely includes you.

Sadie, thank you for your sweet message, glad the greens arrived. Have a good Thanksgiving with the Levitts, and hugs for Anna.

We got a new computer game that Sam really enjoys

November 22, 2005 by Adam in Sam

We got a new computer game that Sam really enjoys. The name is Fable, and one of the central ideas is that you can be either evil or good and your character changes depending on your actions. Initially he started good, but he's since gone back and is been somewhat more shady. He announced his morality as "evil in the sense of stealing things, not killing people", though that hasn't been always reflected in the game either. So far he's a little bad, but he still does good things from time to time as well.

He wanted to play so much, that he came up and asked for work so that he could earn thirty minutes of computer time. It's part of our new reward system, something like the third version that we've tried. I had him putting away dishes, cleaning the playroom, washing the bathroom, and vacuuming the floor. After all of that, he got his thirty minues of time.

"You've been really good, and now you can go be bad," I told him, referring to his approach to the game's morality. He thought it was pretty funny.

Robert Greenwald, the maker of Wal-Mart: The ...

November 22, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Robert Greenwald, the maker of Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Prices spoke in Eugene to a crowd of over 700 at Lane community college! I showed the movie with the Williams Greens at Images Cinema, and it had a great reception. If you haven't seen it yet, it's a great film!

The day is winding down

November 21, 2005 by Adam in Family

The day is winding down. We just returned from an afternoon at the wave pool, so everyone's pretty beat. Emma in particular has been quite wacky, not wanting to give in to her afternoon nap. They had a great time at the pool, though, celebrating the dual birthdays of John and Natalie.

Yesterday was relatively uneventful as well. We took a long walk to the store. The kids and I played while Jamie picked up some groceries. Jamie's family briefly descended upon the house before the Civil War game.

Gotta run. Emma's on the loose again.

Mom - did you see that Maron Alsop was one of...

November 19, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Mom - did you see that Maron Alsop was one of the featured women in Newsweek at the end of October? So who really cares what Baltimore thinks, we'll always welcome her back!

I've been having some annoying problems with ...

November 18, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

I've been having some annoying problems with my computer lately. Fortunately I figured out the problem was due to bad memory. A few days later, I'm up to 1.5 GB of memory and all is good.

I also picked up Fable: The Lost Chapters and Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault. I loaded up Fable last night and Sam played for a bit. It's interesting how you start as a boy and are forced to make moral decisions as you go through the world. Sam's being completely good, though we'll see how long that lasts.

I'm not sure if it's revolutionary, but it's entertaining so far. I like being able to crank up the resolution and anti-aliasing with my new video card, watching it on my new big LCD. It puts consoles to shame.

Nice going, Seraph, now all Adam's gamers kno...

November 18, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Nice going, Seraph, now all Adam's gamers know he has a mother who can't add, subtract, or keep track of her kids!
Looking forward to seeing Robbie and Isa this weekend; we
are going to the Hult for Dora the Explorer with Jenny and the boys, and possibly Hanni.
Bob and I went to the symphony last night; just lovely. Did you all read that the Baltimore Symphony was poopy to Maron
Alsop? Sexist pigs. I introduced Sam to theexplodingwhale.com. Men with dynamite! Ya' gotta love them.
Sadie, I sent the holly a couple of days ago, and I sent the wreath this morning. Much love from the old folks at home.

It was another productive day at work

November 18, 2005 by Adam in Family

It was another productive day at work. I'm getting close to releasing a new version of a wildly popular tool I made. Hopefully people will ooh and aah appropriately.

My mom came over to watch the kids last night while Jamie and I went out to Ambrosia. It was a treat to get away for an hour or so, though I was strangely eager to get back to the kids. Fortunately my mom did a wonderful job with them. Emma was smiling and eager upon our return.

It looks like I'll be off to work in a few minutes. We've got a few things happening this weekend. We're all going swimming on Sunday for one of Sam's friend's birthday parties. I've got to pick up a new swimming suit as my last one vanished. I think we get to see Jamie's family briefly, before they head out to the football game. Same ol', same ol'.

Sadie-in regards to the Weight Watchers Cards...

November 17, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Sadie-in regards to the Weight Watchers Cards, I bought a collection of McCall's recipiet card at the church's holiday baazar for $0.50. there were puplished in 1973 and are great fun to look through. I was actually thinking about having a tacky 1970's dinner party were I actually made things like a ham ring and jello molds!

Yesterday was a bit more cheery, though not w...

November 17, 2005 by Adam in Family

Yesterday was a bit more cheery, though not without the occasional missteps. Work continued to be fun, wrapping up a neat little program that should make some doctors happy (and patients as well). The kids and I had a great time after work. Emma put her fists on her hips and declaired that she was "super girl!" The started off a game where I was a monster and they were super heroes. It's always a treat to be able to throw the kids around the room with abandon.

Unfortunately the first casualty was myself. Sam's knee landed on my big toe, bending the nail in odd directions. Emma then became greatly concerned, wanting to dab at the blood with some toilet paper. A couple band-aids later, I was fine and we settled into some quiet computer games.

The rest of the evening was fairly uneventful. Emma nearly fell asleep at the table due to no nap, and we all pitched in trying to keep her up until her normal bed time. Sam and I worked on his homework, coloring pictures based on math equations and coming up with silly sentences for him to write for his spelling homework. Good times.

Yesterday had its ups and downs

November 16, 2005 by Adam in Family

Yesterday had its ups and downs.

I started feeling a cold coming on, so I was feeling a bit achy by the end of the day. Jamie and I got into a tiff, seeming to involve getting Sam to eat a well-balanced meal for dinner. Emma was having a hard day as well, complaining of her legs hurting, probably due to growing pains.

There were some highlights as well. Emma came to visit me in the morning at work, and was very fun to take around. Sam continues to do well at school and is a bright and thoughtful boy. I talked to Sadie for nearly an hour, which was a rare and wonderful treat. I worked on a fun project at work, getting a chance to ooh and aah over something I made. At the end of the day, Jamie wandered down the stairs and we had a nice long talk.

So, life continues to be interesting, if tricky at times. I woke up with a headache this morning, but after some Advil and tea, I'm feeling much perkier. So it goes.

I finally bought my ticket home for the holidays

November 16, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

I finally bought my ticket home for the holidays. I'm arriving in Eugene on Thursday, Dec 15 at 9:58 pm and leaving on Friday, Dec 30 at 8:17 am. Hoorah! Let the orch battles and snuggle fest begin!

Like most grand romantic gestures, mine began...

November 14, 2005 by Adam in Adam

Like most grand romantic gestures, mine began with a mix-up, followed by hardship, and eventual doomed failure.

I forgot to bring my workout gear this morning, so when lunch rolled around, I realized this and headed out for a walk. After a few minutes of aimless wandering, I decided I'd head home to greet Jamie with a kiss and silently return to work. Well, it took quite awhile to get there, and it turns out she was gone. I ended up sadly leaving a note, which hopefully mystified her.

I got back to my desk with five minutes to spare before my meeting. I never did completely finish my lunch. Ah, well, it was worth it.

Happy Happy belated birthday, Seraph! I ha...

November 14, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Happy Happy belated birthday, Seraph!

I had a great time at Highlander this weekend, although the Smoky Mountains look quite a bit like the Berkshires. It made me feel very very lucky.

I'm heading back to work shortly after a rath...

November 14, 2005 by Adam in Family

I'm heading back to work shortly after a rather nice three-day weekend. After three days, it makes returning to the daily grind a bit difficult. The kids were generally in good moods and we all had a good time.

Friday was my "all day with the kids" day. Well, not exactly, but it felt like it. We walked to the movie store to pick up some videos. Emma was in the back pack and Sam trudged along. It's a few miles there and back, but we amazingly made it in a pretty good mood.

Saturday we walked to the library, returning with even more videos and books. Sunday we went to the playground by Oakway, the kids getting pretty soggy bug enjoying themselves.

All-in-all, it was a family-filled weekend. We didn't do anything terribly exciting. There were movies, art projects, playing in the basement, running around outside, and the like. It was generally relaxing and often pleasant.

Seraph, Happy Birthday, shame on you! Look a...

November 11, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Seraph, Happy Birthday, shame on you! Look at that sweet little (according to her Grandmother) scampy girl and loving husband, I would say that your life has been exciting since 18!!!!
Sue may have shredded curtains but I lifted my dress and scratched my butt in front of the Normalville United Methodist Church during the Christmas paegent. Gotta love the Steane/Jones genes.

Actually I turned 18 in Rome, not much exciti...

November 11, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Actually I turned 18 in Rome, not much exciting since.

Happy birthday, dear Seraph, happy birthday t...

November 11, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Happy birthday, dear Seraph, happy birthday to you. 29! I can't believe it! Do you remember celebrating your 21st birthday in Rome? What a fine young woman you turned into!
All the way home Sunday evening, I thought about how much
I'd like to have a coat like your design. How about doing a line specifically becoming to older women - not fat clothes necessarily, but for the 63 year old, had a buncha kids kind of figure. Where is it written that my size 12 figure is the same shape as some young miss's size 12 figure? Well, it may be the same weight, but mine is rearranged, and lower.
Tell Isa I almost sat on her baby pig, because it had crawled down to the bottom of my bed, but fortunately it oinked in time.
I was sitting on the edge of the desk watching Sam and Emma
draw. She's not supposed to use the smaller magic markers if she pokes with their end because it ruins the points. I scolded her a couple times. Finally she looked up at me and said, with her best Bambi eyes, in an endearing voice, "Go
away." I couldn't help laughing, and asked her if she wanted
me to go away so she could do something naughty. Without skipping a beat, she looked up at me with a look of sheer scampiness, and nodded her head.
Love to everyone from someone who shredded the curtains because my mom made me take a nap! Glad my DNA hasn't disappeared completely from the gene pool. Heh, heh.

The kid's illnesses continue

November 10, 2005 by Adam in Family

The kid's illnesses continue. Sam hasn't been in school all week and if last night's coughing continues, he may not be in today either. Emma seems better, though she seems to be having problems sleeping. I've noticed a sniffle this morning, so I'm expecting the worst.

I'm taking tomorrow off by request from Jamie, so I'll likely be puttering around the house and taking care of kids. I'd like to take them to a playground or for a hike, but I'm not sure they're up for it.

Work's been busy in an odd way this last week. The interruptions and meetings continue non-stop. Rarely do I actually do what I had planned to do when I arrive in the morning. Fortunately I actually got some work done yesterday. Just talking about how we're going to do things can get a bit wearying.

Best to head to the shower and start getting ready for the day . . .

It was a glorious fall morning, the kind wher...

November 10, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

It was a glorious fall morning, the kind where it's so sunny you don't know whether or not to hide or bask! Unfortunately I was home with Isa this morning, who decided to come down with some flu-like bug last night (rather messy one too). Poor girl is doing her best.
I headed off to a mid-term exam when Robbie finished work, and need to turn in a project from a class I missed this morning. While home I did manage to make a good dent in cleaning my desk, which has become a black hole of doom lately. I was also able to review some babyhood video for a friend of mine who is doing his senior movie about the family dog when the new baby is born. I'm trying to find any bits a pieces that might help.
Robbie and I enjoyed a quiet, and not very productive last weekend, actually getting to go to the theater to see War of the Worlds with some friends. Thank you to everyone who helped watch Isa. She really enjoyed herself.

Oh, my, God, Sadie

November 09, 2005 by Jamie in Sadie & Greg

Oh, my, God, Sadie...you just made my day! Thanks for the great laugh therapy ;-)

Sam got a new fish for his tank last week

November 09, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam got a new fish for his tank last week. It's an alge eating fish, promptly named "Croco" by Sam. It's been doing a great job eating the slime from the fish tank, with even Jamie mesmerized by the cleaning power of the little critter. I think she's secretly hoping to train an army of the little guys with special water helmets and turn them loose on our house, cleaning every surface as they go.

Sam's doing really well in school these days. He's gotten 100% on every spelling test and quickly picks up math as well. His reading still needs work, though he's so much better than he was at the start of the year. If he sets his mind to it, he can figure out most words. At this point, he just needs practice.

Please, dear family, stop me from advancing m...

November 09, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Please, dear family, stop me from advancing my career in telemarketing.

The Office of Community Service is running a winterization project of local homes, which involves me cold calling fifty families a day to try to convince them that I'm giving them something, not selling them something. Sigh.

Nevertheless, it's going well enough so that talking about it on TV tonight. We've had local paper articles and such, which is nice. When I say "TV", I mean public access. I'm becoming one of THOSE people on public access, droning on about legalizing ganja and giving out guns. CNN 2, here I come!

The funniest thing I've ever seen: Weight Watchers cards from 1972 on www.candyboots.com

It's been a bumpy week

November 09, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's been a bumpy week. Sam was out of school for the last couple days, not horribly sick, but not well either. Now Emma's starting to get the cough and sniffles. She was up a lot last night and I ended up coming to work late so that Jamie could get a little sleep this morning.

Despite all of this, the kids and I have been relatively cheerful. We've had some great times playing in the basement, coming up with all sorts of silly games. We replaced the batteries of Sam's little remote control car. Emma loved driving it all over the place, at one point "giving me a haircut" by driving it on my head.

Sam and I had a little time to play on the co...

November 08, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

Sam and I had a little time to play on the computer together last night. More often than not, we've been gravitating towards Garry's Mod on Half-Life 2. Basically it lends itself towards very open-ended gameplay. You can spawn in enemies, objects, and you have a variety of tools for manipulating them. We dropped ourselves into an empty map and proceeded to play.

Initially I spawned a bunch of zombies for Sam to dispatch, just to warm up. He was getting a little frantic towards the end as I had made a huge mob. Fortunately I also dropped in a ton of explosive barrels for him to cause havok with.

After that, we decided to go after each other in interesting ways. Sam's preferred method was to drop down a bunch of barrels and then say "come over here, dad". Other time's he'd simply spawn in a massive shipping crate and drop it on my head.

I was going for the more elegant methods. I spawned in a car and attached thrusters that I could use to control its movement. It was a little tricky to use, basically a mini-rocket that bounced about on the ground. A later version was airborne with dozens of balloons attached to it, though it was basically impossible to get through doorways.

Good times.

I'm beat

November 07, 2005 by Adam in Family

I'm beat. It's Sunday evening and everyone has gone to bed. The guests went home. I'm ready to hit the sack myself.

Saturday I took the kids swimming, and then Sam and I watched Batman Begins. Ray and Dave came over to visit for a bit, with Ray passing out all sorts of Huskers-related clothes. Sunday was all about getting ready for the party. Dave and I fixed the light, Jamie cookied, I made biscotti. The party itself was lots of fun, with the kids going over to Dave's house while the grown-ups remained to eat, drink, and chat.

Poor Sam had a bad fever today, throwing up in the morning and not eaching much the rest of the day. He was feeling better by the time he went to Dave's, but he's still pretty worn out. We'll see if he's in good enough shape to go to school tomorrow.

Another full day of meetings with meadville c...

November 04, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Another full day of meetings with meadville community leaders. Amazing. I'd love to set up Community Development Corporations when I grow up.

Friday morning, and a great weekend coming up

November 04, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Friday morning, and a great weekend coming up. I'm having lunch with Hanni and Isa, and then Isa and I are adventuring. We are going to AdamandJamie's for afterschool work with Sam on the spy play, and for dinner. Tomorrow Isa will play with Jordan and Dez during the game, and Sunday afternoon is the great Wallace and Grommit movie adventure. I will take Isa up to Portland Sunday evening; it just occurred to me that I should trade vehicles with Bob and take up the shelves. Love to all, om

It's been a rather busy morning here at work

November 04, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's been a rather busy morning here at work. It was a Mocha Friday, fortunately, which helped alleviate the frantic nature of some of the issues that popped up. The problems were typical computer ones, things not working as expected, new weirdnesses popping up, and patchings causing problems. I suppose it's all job security.

The weekend is mere hours away, something I'm looking forward to quite a bit. I think the kids and I will do some swimming, and the Batman Begins movie is wating for us. On Sunday night we have a "grown-ups only" dinner party. It's been a long while since dinner hasn't involved squabbling over how much food has to be eaten before dessert can be handed out.

Emma had a bad cough last night, which kept waking me up. It seems like she basically slept through it all, though. I think everyone else has recovered from the sniffles, and Emma seems fine other than the occasional cough or sniffle.

Meadville is a much more complex and rich cit...

November 03, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Meadville is a much more complex and rich city than I remember it as a ten year-old. I'm sitting in an old bank now wireless cafe and gallery after siting in on a city planning meeting, community leader meeting, and interesting talk by Jody Ktezman, whose simple message can be summed up by "find what makes your community's glass half full instead of half empty." A profound shift for many communitites, Meadville included.

Seeing Danica, Dorothy, and Amara has been such a blessing. I feel so lucky to be able to put this family roots trip on the college's bill.

We made it through Halloween

November 02, 2005 by Adam in Family

We made it through Halloween. It was fun to watch Emma figure out the whole "trick or treat" thing. She kept saying "let's try that house" after each one. Of course, we now have massive amounts of candy in our house and Emma knows it. She'll claim to be hungry during dinner and then ask for candy.

Everyone's been a bit blah these last few days. I think they're sick or tired or some combination of the two. I think I need to get the kids out of the house for awhile, perhaps swimming or something.

Thanks all for the Birthday greetings

November 02, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Thanks all for the Birthday greetings. Don't feel a day over 100! Hope you all are well. HAPPY HALLOWEEN! This year was the first in 17 years that I didn't go in some capacity. Bummer!!!

This pretty much says it all

November 02, 2005 by Adam in Adam

This pretty much says it all . . .

For the curious, this is the Penny Arcade folks being on their best behavior, writing a comic for Forbes.

Happy belated birthday, Betsy! I finally got ...

November 02, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Happy belated birthday, Betsy! I finally got a birthday card into the mail. Inspired by the Egyptian sections of the
British Museum, I made a couple of quick stops last night as Queen of the Night, one to see Emma and Adam. Emma was a little leery of me in a fright wig, black make up, and that long cape your dad made for me during the 60's, which has seen duty as a hallowe'en costume about as often as his old tuxedo. I went up to Bob's - his street is flat, and he gets quite a lot of Trick or Treaters. To our amazement and delight, Judy, Caleb and his wife, their little boy, and Jacob all stopped in. Judy and Lon knew Bob and his wife
from when the latter lived on Riverview. Good to see Judy,
and of course, to see the kids.

I finished F

October 31, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

I finished F.E.A.R. the night before last. I wasn't able to stop playing after I reached a certain point in the game, when the story begun to steamroll ahead and the scares kept coming. The ending was perfect in an homage to The Ring sort of way. Excellent use of creepy revelations.

The gameplay itself was primarily a great big gunfight with scary parts in between. The slow-motion was fun to play with. Hearing the enemies swear in slow motion as you ran in, guns blazing, was viscerally exciting.

Now it's back to working on my endless Neverwinter Nights campaign. At least we're starting to get some pretty screenshots and more information.

Happy birthday to Betsy, and Happy Halloween ...

October 31, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Happy birthday to Betsy, and Happy Halloween to everyone!
I finished up Isa's Unicorn costume last night, but the amount of rain coming down today might make it a short holiday. Though, after seeing the number of people dressed up at school, I may actually dress up a bit myself for my class tonight.
Life here is, as always, busy yet fulfilling. I am heading into mid-terms next week, and from there it snowballs until finals. We picked up our registration information today, and I can't believe how few classes I have left to take. Only the hard ones now.
Robbie has been getting into the holiday mood, so we have been cleaning and organizing in preperation for decorating and baking.
Isa continues to excell at school, and is very excited about taking a few days off this week to go to Eugene and hang with her grandparents.
I've been informed that I have a birthday coming up. But, considering that I will be in class, as well as working on projects, I think any celebrations will have to wait until next years big 30.

Well, Jamie returned empty-handed

October 31, 2005 by Adam in Family

Well, Jamie returned empty-handed. I think the pricing of the things she was interested in was a bit too rich for her blood. We were happy to have her back today, especially as she fixed up some tasty dutch babies for breakfast this morning.

It was our typical madhouse Sunday. We went of to Costco to load up on way too much cereal. I swear, I could fill the cart with cereal and be done with it in a month. Afterwards we headed home to try and get Emma down for a nap. Many hours later she finally did, though it took awhile. Sam and I played on the computer for a bit too long, and played pretend in the basement. Jamie and I got to actually exchange a few complete sentences over lunch.

The big excitement of the day came at four o'clock. We had some new neighbors move in a couple houses up the street. They invited a ton of kids and their parents and threw an amazing party. There were gunny-sack races, bobbing for apples, a treasure hunt, and a really scary haunted house. I met a bunch of people, including running into an old friend from high school. The kids both had a great time, even Sam who was mesmerized by the haunted house.

Jamie went off to Portland with Pat and his a...

October 29, 2005 by Adam in Family

Jamie went off to Portland with Pat and his aunt, looking for antiques. She left before the kids were fully up, so I've gotten a taste of her life these last few hours. Emma's still a bit sick and I've been battling a headache off and on. Fortunately my mom agreed to share our morning adventures.

We first went to Humble Bagel to stock up on goodies for the day. Then it was off to the farm to wander around a muddy pumpkin patch, returning home with a couple pumpkins to carve up this evening. After dropping off my mom, we took a quick library trip and returned home to enjoy our ill-gotten booty.

The kids are watching DVDs and I'm enjoying a few minutes of downtime. I suspect that soon enough we'll start in on the pumpkins and get dinner ready. Hopefully Jamie will be home before nightfall.

Sadie, you make my life much more cool than i...

October 29, 2005 by Jamie in Sadie & Greg

Sadie, you make my life much more cool than it really is. You go girl! Thinking of you, Jamie

A chilly but dry Halloween weekend is upon us...

October 28, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

A chilly but dry Halloween weekend is upon us, and our shrunken heads and jack-o-lanterns are ready for mobs of trick-or-treaters. Our neighborhood, originally the working-class area of Williamstown, is full of sidewalks and duplexes- ideal for greedy little goblins. We have a few friends coming in for Anna's Berkshire Symphony concert and some harvest festivities. There may be a burlesque show involved. Should be a good time.

I'm driving to Meadville, PA on Wednesday to go to a community asset mapping conference. Dorothy is putting me up, but I'll get to spend plenty of time with Jed, Amara, and Satchi as well. It will be so exciting to see Meadville from the eyes of a community organizer! I'll report back on my findings.

And if you're dying to hear my radio show on Monday and Friday mornings from 9-10 EST (6-7 PST), we have online streaming at wcfm.williams.edu! I take requests!

Hogs and quiches!

Mocha Friday already

October 28, 2005 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday already. Yesterday was a little rough. Poor Jamie was clearly pretty sick and the kids were both a bit grumpy. We'll see if I stay at home the whole day or if I'm called home to assist. Sam doesn't have school today, making things even more challenging for my poor wife.

It's strange thinking we have a weekend right around the corner. I suspect we'll try to take it easy as much as possible. We have one Halloween party Sunday night, but that's about it. I still have no idea what I want to dress up as. I'd love to be a pirate, but just don't have the clothes for it.

Sam continues to do well with school. His handwriting is better than mine and his speed is slowly improving. He's gotten 100% on all his spelling tests and does quite well in math. I think the only thing that's "average" is his reading, so we're trying to spend a little more time having him read to us.

Emma continues to grow up. She can now get into nearly everything below five feet off the floor, using stools and ingenuity. Leaving her alone for long periods of time usually results in items being carefully taken apart or moved to strange locations.

Ah, life.

Everyone seems to have come down with a cold,...

October 27, 2005 by Adam in Family

Everyone seems to have come down with a cold, though Emma and Jamie were hit the hardest. Jamie's been wanting to simply curl up in front of the fireplace with tea. Emma is cranky and telling people "I have a sick nose."

We're getting ready for Halloween, already invited to several parties. I have no idea what I'm going to dress up as. I may just print out some Star Wars masks and make Sam happy.

Hi, the shelves are spoken for! Lohring, bewa...

October 27, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi, the shelves are spoken for! Lohring, beware; like the rest of the family, I will be trying to foist off anything I can't get rid of into your storage shed. You don't really think any of us are ever going to move anything out of there, do you?

Hi, sweeties, as promised, I am taking steps ...

October 26, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi, sweeties, as promised, I am taking steps toward retirement. I will need to get rid of two metal shelves, 3
shelves high, about 4 and a half feet tall, and 3 feet long.
Also, Seraph, you asked about bookshelves. I can immediately part with two of the individual units, which are in pretty good shape. many hugs, the ever retiring mom

Everyone arrived safe and sound last night

October 25, 2005 by Adam in Family

Everyone arrived safe and sound last night. Emma's got a cold, so she's been sleeping strangely. I had her for a couple hours this morning, starting at 4:30, so I'm still a little groggy.

Our car is finally getting repaired. We have a new shiny Camry with only 800 miles on it, which is a little weird. Jamie's trying hard to keep the kids from getting it dirty, which seems a futile task.

I also had three blissful hours to myself yesterday morning while Sam was at work. It was mostly in front of my computer playing games, but it was odd to have such a quiet house. It's nice to have everyone back, though.

Anna found this very interesting article

October 24, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Anna found this very interesting article. The author is a big advocate of energy conservation over energy efficiency, and has some interesting ways of explaining his thoughts in this article:


He emphasizes that the best things in life aren't necessarily the most efficient. An excerpt:

The products and processes that are the most valuable to us are, by necessity, inefficient. Examples are democracy, raising children, learning, loving, art, manners, and even nature itself, which H.T. Odum estimated was only 2% efficient. Respectively, we can make each of these more efficient through dictatorship, child labor, cheating, pornography, mass production, selfishness and genetic engineering – all with repercussions. Increased efficiency destroys the things we value most and yet adds value to the more quantifiable products and processes that harm our environment.

He also suggests a "Reverse Peace Corps" that brings ideas from less efficient but more sustainable societies back to our crazy consuming country. Enjoy!

Grandpa Bill is alive and well in Tarpon Spri...

October 24, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Grandpa Bill is alive and well in Tarpon Springs, Fla. He evacuated Venice on his own yesterday afternoon before Wilma got close and drove to Tarpon Springs to be with the Gougeons there. I have yet to hear if everything is safe and sound in Venice but the storm was not as strong there although a shopping center over on the By Pass lost its roof. (Per Sarasota Paper) Love to all, Bets

I need to wake up Sam in a few minutes and ta...

October 24, 2005 by Adam in Family

I need to wake up Sam in a few minutes and take him to school. I'm off from work today, helping coordinate the endless little things that are going on.

On Sunday Sam and I went to Fred Meyers, picking up groceries and some new workout clothes for myself. Sam entertained himself by pretending certain tile colors were lava, traps, or other dangers. The entire setup was explained to the check out woman on our way out.

We made rice krispies and decided to make a mask for Sam. I had accidentally discovered some plaster bandages in Jamie's closet (I'm not sure if I want to ask). Soon enough, I had greased up his face with Vaseline and was applying bandages. Getting it off was a bit uncomfortable, but he thinks it's pretty cool.

It was off to his soccer game after that. He managed to score a goal, though I'm not sure his technique was something he learned at practice. I think it involved holding hands with an opponent and practically sitting on the ball, somehow popping it over the goal lines. It was admittedly hard to follow. Afterwards was the traditional pizza party and handing out of medals. As you might expect, it was over the top, six year olds raising the noise level to that of jack hammers and jet planes.

We headed home where I was pretty beat. There was mask painting and the normal bedtime ritual. Towards the end I think Sam and I were both pretty exhausted.

Ah, well. Jamie arrives home today. Can't wait.

The first day of boy's weekend has come to a ...

October 23, 2005 by Adam in Family

The first day of boy's weekend has come to a close. The day was full, sending Jamie and Emma off to Eagle Crest. It sounds like they made it over just fine and are having a good time. Sam and I fiddled with the computer a bit, ate some lunch, and headed off to Spencer's Butte.

The hike up was great, with beautiful weather and friendly hikers. The view was great, far above the haze of the valley. We returned, tired, and settled down for a little old school Invisible Man in black and white. We worked in some play time, some cooperative computer gaming, and a little hamburger for dinner. Good times.

It took him a little while to get to sleep. I think he was missing Jamie and Emma, but then again so do I.

Anna and I are in the local coffee shop, eves...

October 21, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Anna and I are in the local coffee shop, evesdropping on a really loud conversation about a management ladder. I'm pretending that it's an inside peek at the bureaucracy of a regional prostitution ring, which makes it much more exciting.

This is the weekend of tourist leaf-peepers, and the coffee shop is full of foreign voices using the restroom. They're much quieter than our American neighbors, who are now nearly yelling about making money. Even the women from the Women's House of Peace executive committee, had a crescendo of passion about meditation space in their conversation. I myself love to know that other people can hear my intimate witticisms- a bizarre American egotism, I suppose. Anna, having spent a year of her childhood in France, is somehow exempt from this boisterous public volume. How that woman keeps me in line.

However, she couldn't keep me from painting the living room red yesterday. It looks amazing, and I'll send pictures soon.

The weather and the leaves have responded beautifully to the tourists' attention and are in full flame. Williams called Mountain Day today, so all the students are picking apples and frolicking in the woods. It's a lovely day for a mocha, advil (the Miller remedy for all ills, mine from yesterday's paint fumes), and a little walk in Williamstown.

Mocha Friday, and a busy one at that

October 21, 2005 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday, and a busy one at that. I'm returning to work after two days of training, which means that various crises have piled up while I was unavailable. Now I'm trying to figure out where to even start. Ah, well, I'm sure I'll survive.

This weekend should be an odd one with Jamie and Emma gone. Hopefully Sam and I can spend some solid time together as it seems that Emma takes most of my attention when I'm watching both of them.

We had our last soccer practice last night. The adults played against the kids and everyone had a great time. Emma spent much of the time at the school's playground where some older girls became enamored of her. They kept wanting to pick her up and help her move around the play structure. Emma was joyous if a little overwhelmed. I made sure they didn't treat her too much like a doll.

I woke up late this morning, with Jamie asking if I was feeling okay and informing me of the time. I've started getting a throat thing, which is a little annoying. Tis the season for non-stop illnesses, I suppose.

Hi, it's the old mom, settled in home, with m...

October 19, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi, it's the old mom, settled in home, with my natural gas turned back on, the cat mollified, glad to be able to drink tap water, and very glad to see and talk to all the kids.

I returned very determined to support the separation of church and state. I nearly always wear the orthodox cross Anita gave me, particularly when I travel. In Croatia, looking at the bullet ridden Orthodox church and
homes of Orthodox people, I felt a real fear wearing it.

Nearly everyone in other countries is polite to individual US citizens, and treat Bush like a joke, but behind that jocularity there is a clear feeling of disgust with the unprovoked invasion of Iraq.

Some bright news in the Register-Guard...with the exception of the US, Russia, and the two colonial powers, war has dropped off considerably. I guess we're just slow learners here.

Sam was cracking me up last night

October 19, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam was cracking me up last night. We were playing Legos, and I pulled him away so that he could work on his spelling homework. He professed that he was hungry, so I made him some english muffins with butter. The catch was that he could only take a bite if he correctly spelled a word.

Well, soon enough he was really getting into the Pavlovian training thing. He was spelling "from" and "this" and taking bites proportional to the quality of his work. He made me toast up a second one so the fun could continue.

Years from now, when he's trying to figure out how to spell a word, he'll probably start drooling and think of english muffins.

I loaded up Spellforce, which came with my vi...

October 17, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

I loaded up Spellforce, which came with my video cards. I wasn't expecting much, since my experience with bundled games has been generally poor. I'd tried out the racing game earlier in the day and while it was pretty, it was just like Pole Position from when I was a kid.

It turns out that Spellforce isn't too shabby. Sam quickly usurped my place at the computer and was having a good time going through the tutorial. It's very similar to all the other RTS games out there, but it was new to Sam. He fought evil orcs, created a base, harvested resources, and raised an army. Now he's finishing up the tutorial and will likely move on to the real game pretty soon.

I'm also waiting on F.E.A.R., which I think ships today or tomorrow. It's gotten pretty good reviews, other than being a bit short.

Sunday came and went

October 17, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sunday came and went. It was a fairly good day, starting off with me sneaking out to Metropol bakery to pick up some tasty pastries and bread fresh from the oven. Emma couldn't stop eating the french bread, nor could I.

Jamie went off to see my mom and do some shopping while the kids and I walked down to the library. It's always a challenge to move them from point A to point B, but they were generally in a good mood. Sam returned with a bunch of comic books and some easy readers for him to work on when he goes to bed. There's a particular style of book that has short funny stories in it that he really enjoys.

I spent a good hour or two continuing to scrape away the paint from our bathroom medicine cabinet. Stripping paint is tedious work, and my arms and back were sore the next day. I'm still not done, though. I predict more scraping and sanding in my near future.

Here's a picture from when Emma came to visit me last week. We often come up and chat briefly with my coworkers. It's funny when she says the word "cubicle".

After torrential rain and major flooding, the...

October 17, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

After torrential rain and major flooding, the sun has finally come out, and it's looking like a proper New England fall. Ah, the crunching leaves.

Love to all!

It's Sunday morning in the Miller household, ...

October 16, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's Sunday morning in the Miller household, though most everyone is still asleep. Yesterday was fairly busy, considering we didn't have much in the way of plans.

But first, my mom arrived safe and sound from her grand tour of Europe. She returned with an armload of exotic gifts, including a nice suede jacket for yours truly. It's nice having her around again.

Sam had a soccer game first thing in the morning. Emma and I mostly played on the playground, though we managed to watch Sam a bit. He's playing fairly well, and scored at least one goal while we were watching.

After returning home for lunch, we ran off to see Wallace and Gromit, Curse of the Were-Rabbit. It was the first time Emma had ever been to a movie theater and she was wide-eyed the whole time, even though she was exhausted. The movie itself was great fun, classic Wallace and Gromit, with plenty of amusing little parts for adults.

The rest of the day was a bit of a blur. I tried entertaining kids as best I could. Graham came over to play with Sam for a couple hours. Emma and I broke out kitchen chemicals and made science experiments. Somewhere in there I worked on stripping the paint from the medicine cabinet.

As for today, there's another soccer game, but not much else. We'll see how we manage to fill the hours.

Mocha Friday

October 14, 2005 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. Woke up late. More in a bit . . .

Okay, I'm at work and appropriately caffinated. Jamie drank pop yesterday evening, and so when I came to bed at ten o'clock, she was still very chatty. I must have finally fallen asleep around eleven and ended up waking up at seven in the morning. Since that's when I'm usually at work, I rushed through my routine and zipped into work.

Sam had soccer practice last night, which he still seems to enjoy. I think he likes hanging out with the other boys, especially his friends Jake and John. Emma goes along with it all. Last night she was digging in the dirt and following Natalie around, helping with the house they were building for bugs.

There's a variety of projects that await me this weekend. Jamie's been stripping paint off the bathroom medicine cabinet. I think there's about ten layers of history under there. Maybe we can buy a new mattress this weekend too, though the cost is pretty steep for what we want. Ah, rest for the weary - looking forward to that one.

Thursday already

October 13, 2005 by Adam in Family

Thursday already. My how the week has flown by.

Emma's much better, her usual chatty self. So far, no one else seems to have gotten sick, though newly superstitious Jamie would throw salt over her shoulder and give me the evil eye for saying that. I had her at work this morning and she charmed everyone at the bagel store, dancing to the rap music they were playing over the speaker system.

I'm not quite sure what's going on this weekend. I'd like to spend some time with Jamie if I can, as next weekend it'll just be Sam and I. A boy's weekend sounds fun, though hopefully we can remember to bathe and eat things more complicated than mac and cheese.

Anna and I are working collaboratively on a m...

October 13, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Anna and I are working collaboratively on a mini-energy audit and winterization program for households who receive emergency fuel assistance from the Berkshire Community Action Council. It's exciting to get to do something so concrete that links together our local community assets and needs and broader national and international energy issues.

I'm also working on a few other big and exciting projects, which keep me manic and distracted.

But despite making myself invaluable, my position at the college is seemingly more tenuous than it’s ever been. Of course, I've never been able to be found on the college web directory, but I always liked the outsider position. I never actually felt like I was kept out of the loop on the vision of the office or the institution. On the contrary, I felt closer to student action and college administration than a hired community service director would feel. But there is a subtle and illusive shift that I can't quite place, but which seems to spell change led from above.

Now, my loving and sensitive family, you know me well enough to know that I tilt at windmills half the time. I am an intuitive and romantic person that spends more time talking about the texture of fog than the 3 school district tutoring database I'm negotiating into creation.

But intuition is a hint of some material reality. So let me lay this out in shadows that my intuition, but perhaps not yet the institution, is pulling together.

First, my boss, the part time chaplain of the college and part time coordinator of community service, is getting a doctorate in some wing of divinity. These elite certificates seem to tip balances in administrations, and I suspect that they could tip him into becoming the full-time dean of religious life of Williams College. In that case, we'd need a full-time coordinator in the office of community service.

Second, the college must be getting nervous about its civic engagement ranking, and the deanery and president's office might do something about it in a way that is not very consultative or collaborative. I suspect (possibly) that they may subject the office to the administrative powers of the dean's office or the campus life office. In my mind, the possibility of being absorbed into the campus life office is immediate death. Becoming part of the dean's office sounds almost as terrible. The best possible, but possibly least probable, merger would be of experiential education, the Office of Career Counseling, and the Office of Community Service. This umbrella organization for these college offices is not uncommon. Allegheny, for example, has an umbrella office for these groups. Would all the queens of the various offices (including myself, of course) be able to work collaboratively? Certainly not. But the Office of Community Service has an endowed fund. So we don't have to.

Which leads me to the next problematic that makes my office seem like it's at the edge of some weird precipice. We have money in the form of an endowed fund, but no staff. What would happen if the chaplain became a full-time chaplain/dean of religious life? Who would administer the fund? A college would not allow some young uneducated whippersnapper to doll out money. With the current hiring freeze (yes! Even at Williams College), the best possible way to have a staff person would be to get an existing position, or existing part-time position, to take over the coordinating role.

So, we have Paula Consolini, PhD, the part-time coordinator of Experiential Education, and we have those lost souls that are shifted into dean's positions by invisible strings from above. I cannot imagine that these options are ideal. Paula should be full-time, but working soley on experiential education, which should be more robust anyway. And isn't is obvious that a dean would not come to student meetings at 9:30 pm on a Wednesday night?

But perhaps we can simply hire a new position for the coordinator of Community Service,

We had a great time in Eugene over the weeken...

October 13, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

We had a great time in Eugene over the weekend, visiting with Charles and Judy, celebrating Hanni's birthday, and seeing Dorothy. It was also nice to see Dad and Yayoe, and play at the park with Adam and Emma, while Robbie got to be a soccar dad watching Sam's game. Sigh...it was warm and sunny, but is now rather rainy out.
We've all been working hard this week, although we allowed a short break on tuesday to make and eat a nice dinner for our anniversery. I think the weekend may include a trip to the Children's Meuseam - if rainy, and the pumpkin patch - if sunny.
We got a postcard from Mom yesterday, although she gets home tonight. Hopfully travel will be smooth, and she can get settled in and reacclimated after such a long trip!

Poor Emma has had a fever for a long while now

October 11, 2005 by Adam in Family

Poor Emma has had a fever for a long while now. She doesn't seem in too much pain, which is good. Instead, she tiredly lays on the couch or asks to be held. She's also very hot and sensitive. Jamie hasn't been sleeping much and even I was up a fair amount last night, getting Tylenol or rubbing her belly. Poor girl.

Jamie and I managed to get out for a little bit last night. I'd lined up Dave and Kirsten while we went to Anatolia for Greek food. It was quite tasty and Jamie and I actually got to talk about grown-up things, such as politics and avian flu. It helped to know that Emma was in the hands of trained medical professionals, though I fretted about her still.

Sam continues to amaze and impress with his school work. He's gotten 100 percent on every spelling test and his writing is great. Smart kid.

I had a fun day trip to Portland with Victori...

October 10, 2005 by Jamie in Jamie

I had a fun day trip to Portland with Victoria on Sunday. We hit the new, ritzy Bridge Point Village at Lake Oswego, and went a little crazy at Talbots. I ended up with 4 shirts and a perfect skirt. After refreshing ourselves at Zao Noodle, we headed up to Washington Square and perused Nordies and J. Crew. I got myself a decadent pair of shoes that Vic and the salesman said would be comfortable and last me many years to come....which they'd better cause I just blew my shoe budget for the next decade ;-)
We had great chats on the drive up and back, and it didn't even feel like we had left Eugene.

It's October tenth, one day from Seraph and R...

October 10, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

It's October tenth, one day from Seraph and Robbie's anniversary. Congratulations, and many years! I'm sitting in an Internet across from Victoria Station, having come back in to town after a nice visit on the Isle of Wight. I met all the people Mary sends on my Trashyjokes list, including the organist at the Methodist Church. It was a lovely smallish church, with a dynamic, funny woman minister. Mary may come to Oregon next fall on her way to Perth, Australia. I am missing you all! Love, mom

Interesting to hear ADAM'S interpretation of ...

October 10, 2005 by Jamie in Emma

Interesting to hear ADAM'S interpretation of what happens at night while he is mostly sleeping in ignorant bliss. Actually, Emma was up and down and crying for MOM most of the night. I got maybe two hours of sleep, interrupted by her kicking me and crying for help. And her diaper leaked onto my sheets in the morning so now I'm getting Sam ready for school and taking care of Emma who doesn't want to be out of my arms AND washing sheets. But, you know, don't cry for me ;-)

Poor Emma had a hard time last night

October 10, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Poor Emma had a hard time last night. She had a fever and was tossing and turning in bed, saying odd things about the chickens. We gave her some tylenol and she seemed to settle down somewhat. Poor girl.

With Sam feeling sick yesterday as well, it may be that we'll soon be experiencing another round of illnesses. Usually they wait until Winter, but maybe they're coming early this year.

The weekend is coming to a close

October 10, 2005 by Adam in Family

The weekend is coming to a close. It was a fairly exciting day, with Jamie away in Portland for most of the day, shopping with Victoria. Fortunately the kids were pretty good and there was enough to do to keep everyone entertained.

We went to the the library this morning. Sam made friends with a four-year-old girl named Chloe. Emma played for a long while with puppets while I gathered up a bunch of kid books. They let me get a couple books for myself, and then we headed home.

After lunch, I tried putting Emma down for a nap, but she was having none of it. We headed off to Sam's soccer game where we played with Seraph, Isabell, and Robie. Sam did well, scoring two goals, and we headed home for a quiet afternoon. Emma fell asleep in the car and I carefully tucked her into bed.

Sam started feeling a little sick, mostly a headache, so he took it easy and watched some DVDs from the library. Emma helped me make pizza and Jamie arrived soon after dinner, loaded with clothes. Now it's time to start the bedtime ritual and get these kids to bed.

I should be in bed by now, but the afternoon ...

October 09, 2005 by Adam in Family

I should be in bed by now, but the afternoon tea has me still perky. It was a rather odd day and I was admittedly in a bad mood for much of it. For whatever reason I got up on the wrong side of the bed and it took until the afternoon to shake it off.

After breakfast, we went shopping at Fred Meyers and then went to Sam's soccer game. Emma was getting pretty exhausted by the end of it, actually trying to bite me as she screamed that she hated me. Fortunately she was an absolute darling after she woke up from her nap and we spend a wonderful afternoon together. We went to the park, colored, and played with playdough.

While that was going on, Jamie and Sam went to a birthday party for one of the soccer kids. Evidently it was an amazing party with a Star Wars theme. Sam returned with a Darth Vader mask, a functioning lightsaber, a hand made droid constructed from various metal parts, a padawan hair tail thingie, and assorted stickers and pencils. The parents dressed up as Chewbacca and Princess Leia. At one point, the dad dressed as Darth Vader and the kids threw shaving cream filled pies at him.

Pretty much every future birthday party we throw for Sam will, by comparison, completely suck.

It's a quiet Fall Friday, my weekly mocha per...

October 07, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's a quiet Fall Friday, my weekly mocha perking me up.

Last night Jamie went off to go shopping with Pat while the kids and I went to Sam's soccer practice. Sam had a good time as usual, getting fairly tuckered out. Emma spent a long time playing with a worm and visiting with the other kids.

Last night was a little rough, with Emma crawling into bed with us sometime in the wee hours. Sam was up early as well, with a bloody nose that kept Jamie running about. I had been kicked out to the guest bedroom by then, so I got a few sarcastic comments about my relative worth as a parent come morning time. From a place of love, of course.

Tonight it's off to dinner at my dad and Yayoe's, seeing Dorothy during her visit. Tomorrow is another soccer game and then I have the kids to myself on Sunday. I'm tempted to see the new Wallace and Gromit movie, which I hear great things about.

Anna is fine

October 07, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Anna is fine. And laughing next to me as I sketch our little place, which is, of course, as unbiased as a Texan Supreme Court nominee.

This morning's walk to work was obscured by a fog as this as pea soup. I've been consumed by work lately, returning home frazzled and ocassionally missing limbs. Now I know why every social justice-y conference has a workshop on "taking care of the caretaker." My whole office is addicted to caffiene and weary pauses.

On the homefront, the house is shaping up beautifully, and we're almost ready to accept our first non-family guest to stay this weekend. If you knew where our guest bed was from, you would not think me neurotic to have spent all day airing out bedding.

The gruesome and exciting realities of co-decorating are thick at 72 Linden.
New Carpet: 3 hours to choose
Fabric for matching (but not too matching) curtains: 1 hour to choose
Making a living room we both think is nice (but not out of a catalogue nice): priceless.
I think this newfound labor makes up for the fact that everything in the house that wasn't taken from a garbage heap was bought at a thrift store. On sale.

Much love and happy leaf peeping!

Emma's still a little sick, though hopefully ...

October 06, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Emma's still a little sick, though hopefully it's at the end of it. A couple nights ago she woke up with a fever, dreaming about monsters in the bed. "It's just dad," Jamie told her. I'm guessing it was my snoring.

Last night she was up again, though I wandered over and patted her back to sleep.

Today she came to visit me at work, which is becoming a regular Tuesday/Thursday treat. It's funny how she's becoming such a creature of habit. We always walk to the bagel store, where she sees a manikin in a store and talks about her Barbie birthday cake. She talks to the people behind the counter and dances to the music they play. Then we wander around campus for awhile, returning back to say hello to my office mates and hand her back to her mom.

We've also established a bedtime routine that involves her sitting on my lap while she eats cereal, and watches movies of her and Sam when they were little. Funny girl.

Hi, sweeties, all

October 06, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi, sweeties, all. I'm in London, where John has gone off on power sightseeing and I have had a wonderful day puttering around, buying pastries and checking out Oxfam.
I got my clothing laundered. They don't really have laundromats in any number in central europe, but I don't know why. We said good-bye to the group, regretfully, yesterday - lots of funny smart people. I had a wonderful time in the Hungarian Museum. Also, Slovenia is a gorgeous country. I am missing everyone very much.I don't think I'll ever be able to winter someplace warm and sunny unless you all come along. Love, Mom

On the way back from soccer practice, Sam ask...

October 05, 2005 by Adam in Sam

On the way back from soccer practice, Sam asked me what I'd rather be doing. After thinking about it for awhile, I told him that it would be nice to watch a show and eat a bowl of cereal. "Okay," he said. "You can do that for five minutes while I watch Emma." He then went on to explain that that was about as long as he could manage, but he wanted to be nice to me.

Sweet kid.

The week has slowly moved along

October 05, 2005 by Adam in Family

The week has slowly moved along. Emma came to visit me at work while Jamie went to the gym. We had a lovely time at the bagel store and Emma somehow charmed her way into being given a stuffed toy dog. It was soccer practice after work, so the kids and I headed to Sam's school. Emma dug in the dirt while Sam ran around like a maniac.

Work had a somewhat amusing crisis, so I dropped everything and worked on an odd project for most of the day. It was fun watching the requirements for my project change every fifteen minutes, as well as giving regular updates to my director. I'm a sucker for saving the day, so it was nice to get something that people could poke at by the time I headed home.

Well, I can't even remember the last time I p...

October 04, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Well, I can't even remember the last time I posted, so I'll try for a quick update. Classes started yesterday, and I can already see that the term will be busy, but hopfully fun. We're in the middle of our STAC book sale, and so far so good!
It continues to be fun for Robbie and Isa to go off to school together each day. Robbie is doing well as balancing the parent and teacher rolls, occasionally with careful politicing. We've been to birthday parties the last two Saterdays, as Isa is getting rather social!
We're looking forward to seeing everyone this weekend as maybe I can avoid stacks of homework on the road!

Hi, with many hugs to all

October 03, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi, with many hugs to all. Were close to the end of the tour, and Im tired and homesick. Ill be beaten and shamed if I dont get to the tour bus on time, so I hope an I love you all will do for now. om

We made an ice cream run last night

October 03, 2005 by Adam in Family

We made an ice cream run last night. Both kids did reasonable well getting the ice cream into their mouths and not their clothes. Emma in particular has turned into quite the talented ice cream eater, methodically licking drips and rotating as needed.

Yesterday's soccer game went well, though the opposing team was pretty good and Sam didn't score any goals. Emma and I spent a lot of time on the playground, climbing on the various play structures. The kids returned home soggy but happy.

It was a typical Sunday evening, full of dinner, baths, and playing in the basement. Emma was pretty worn out by the end of the day, as she decided that naps were for the weak. Sam roped me into an involved game using pen and paper, drawing little stick figures that engaged in epic combat.

The computer projects are apparently endless

October 02, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Projects

The computer projects are apparently endless. It looks like the rear speakers attached to my main computer have died. I've had this speaker setup for six or seven years now, so I suppose I got my money's worth. I've ordered a new 5.1 surround sound system that was fairly inexpensive. Hopefully I can get it set up in time for F.E.A.R. Gotta hear those creatures sneaking up on me from behind, after all.

Well, it's officially Fall

October 02, 2005 by Adam in Family

Well, it's officially Fall. It's been wet and rainy all weekend. So far, the kids seem to be enjoying it, especially Emma who's been running around with her kitty umbrella. I don't mind so much, as it means I don't have to water all our plants each night.

Saturday morning was spent finishing up some painting and entertaining the kids. In the afternoon we headed over to Sam's soccer game where he made three goals and played really well. Emma spent her time fiddling with the controls of the car and running around the playground.

Afterwards, Sam, my dad, and I all went to see Serenity, the movie continuation of the canceled Firefly show. It was lots of fun, with witty dialog, exciting action scenes, and a few poignant moments. Afterwards we all went out to dinner at the Glenwood where Emma played endlessly with Grandpa Lohring.

Today was another morning hanging out with the kids while Jamie went for a walk with Angie. They were in a pretty good mood and we wandered around outside having fun in the soggy weather. After Jamie's return, we cooked up various meals, helped Sam practice his homework, and put the cabinets back together in Jamie's bedroom.

Soon we're off to Sam's second soccer game of the day. Hopefully we can take it easy after that.

Mocha Friday

September 30, 2005 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. It was fairly dreary on the way in, sprinkling a bit on the ride into work. The bike cage was fairly empty and it seems quiet at the office. I started to get whatever Emma has last night, though so far it hasn't been too bad. Mostly I feel tired and my throat is sore.

I'm going to try to go see Serenity with Sam and my dad tomorrow. It's a little tricky with Sam's soccer game at one, but I think we can go see it afterwards.

There's also talk of a trip to Eagle Crest near Bend later in October. It may be that Jamie and Emma go, leaving Sam and I for a boy's only weekend. We'll see how that all turns out.

In general, things keep moving on. I took the kids to soccer practice last night. Emma and I played on the playground a lot. Dave and Kirsten came over and played with the kids. Life's pretty good.

We arrived in Budapest yesterday late morning...

September 29, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

We arrived in Budapest yesterday late morning, and it has definitely been a quick trip. Yesterdays walking tour was so fast, and our local guide, a university professor, was so ironic, that I was completely unclear about what was going on and where we were. However, we spent this morning
at a grand and lovely public bath, followed by coffee and dessert. I then came to the National Museum, with rooms and rooms of artifacts from about 400000 bc to Roman times. I was in hog heaven. I am now aware of the amazing number of foods, words, and customs maintained by the Stallsmith-Jones
clan for which I can see the source in these countries.

I got a call a few minutes ago from an insura...

September 29, 2005 by Adam in Family

I got a call a few minutes ago from an insurance agent, asking me about a car accident. After a bit, I realized that Jamie had been in an accident and hadn't told me about it. I passed along Jamie's cell phone number, sweating bullets and hoping that everything is fine.

After giving a suitable amount of time for the agent to talk to her, I rung her up. It sounds like she backed into a pole in the parking lot, so all is well. Freaky experience, though.

Well, I'm all caught up with my OC fix

September 29, 2005 by Adam in Adam

Well, I'm all caught up with my OC fix. I'm a little less enthusiastic about it as things started trending towards the typical dramas and less about the family comedy. Or perhaps the family comedy episodes haven't been as interesting lately.

In any case, I've been having fun watching various new shows. Lost is an obvious favorite, as is Veronica Mars. I've also been watching Hex as well, an odd British show that seems similar to Buffy.

Of course, finding the time to feed my television habit is a tricky one. I often find myself multitasking, combining it with my evening cereal snack. Unfortunately sleep tends to suffer on occasion.

Emma had her first dance lesson yesterday

September 29, 2005 by Adam in Family

Emma had her first dance lesson yesterday. Jamie said it was pretty free-form, with two-year-olds wandering about and playing with instruments. Still, she was very excited, putting on her pink Barbie ballet outfit for the occasion.

Emma also says some hysterical things at times, though not always intentional. The kids were in the bath and Emma was distracted with some odd toy. Sam decided to take Emma's hygene into his own hands, resulting in Emma replying, "Thank you for washing my bottom." Needless to say, Jamie and I started cracking up.

The kids are going to the dentist today, and perhaps get dropped off for an impromptu visit. Jamie called this morning and reported that Sam was taking extra care with brushing, flossing, and rinsing.

Some of my favorite times on the computer are...

September 28, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

Some of my favorite times on the computer are those I spend with Sam, playing cooperatively. It's pretty rare that we can arrange for the time, as I typically have Emma with me. We've been playing Counterstrike a fair bit, and to be honest we're both equally bad. I'll turn around the corner, see a few terrorists, hide for a moment, and then poke my head out again. Oops.

Still, on occasion we work really well as a team, sticking together, diffusing bombs, saving hostages, and the like. It's funny how in the modern age this seems to be the equivalent of grabbing spears and heading off to go hunt. If they ever make a mammoth hunting game, I'm sure Sam and I would do quite well.

I spent most of last night with poor sick Emma

September 28, 2005 by Adam in Family

I spent most of last night with poor sick Emma. As soon as I arrived, it was a whirlwind getting Sam ready to go get his team picture taken and then off to practice. Jamie took him and they went out to dinner as well, so I didn't see them until close to bed time.

Emma was sniffly and somewhat miserable, though trying hard to be cheerful. I took pity on her and we played all the games she liked to play. We broke out Candyland, moving the pieces along the path to sample the candies and talk to the various characters. Giraffe-shaped swizzle-sticks became our dear friends, talking and kissing each other. In the basement we made a little fort and put the kitties down for a nap.

She ate a huge dinner and then collapsed asleep on the couch. Sam and Jamie arrived a bit later. Somehow Sam and I managed to play a little Counterstrike, work on spelling homework, take a bath, and get him tucked into bed all within a 45 minute period.

Im in an internet cafe in a building which is...

September 27, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Im in an internet cafe in a building which is probably about four or five hundred years old. Hungary is a lovelyy country, butlike all the Central European Countries, steeped in the sadness of conquest. We visited a Soviet Gulag today, fortunately followed by wine tasting. Our guide explained that in Hungary, when things were good, people sang, danced, and drank, and when things were bad,
people sang, danced and drank. Wise people, they. I am missing you all so much. At least a hundred love, Mom

Poor Emma is sick today

September 27, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Poor Emma is sick today. She woke up last night, quietly sobbing and feeling lousy. Jamie sent me off to the store at seven this morning, returning with assorted kid medical supplies.

The last few winters have been pretty hard for our family as wave after wave of illnesses hit. Hopefully things will be better this season now that Emma's a bit older. We'll see how it goes.

The week has been slowly moving on

September 27, 2005 by Adam in Family

The week has been slowly moving on. Sunday evening was fairly low-key. Sam did well at his soccer game. We returned home for dinner and a family walk about the neighborhood. Emma was a little on edge, going from sobbing for Jamie to happily petting a cat in a few short seconds.

Yesterday Sam returned with another 100% on his spelling test. He's doing very well with school in general. We have homework every night, which we're getting into the routine of doing. I did have to make his math homework a bit exciting by turning it into "Battle Math". Now he wants to play board games where you move troops around.

Emma's getting increasingly strong-willed about certain things. Sam went through a similar phase, so it helps to know that it will pass. Still, having Emma wildly scream when she doesn't get what she wants is unpleasant. At other times she can be very sweet and loving, so I know there's a happy kid in there somewhere.

A few weeks back, I picked up a second copy o...

September 26, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

A few weeks back, I picked up a second copy of Half-Life 2 for $10. As expected, the CD key had already been used, so I sent it in for a new one. Well, after a lengthy delay I finally got it back and set it up on the second computer.

The whole point was so that Sam and I could play together, so this weekend we finally did. The first game was simple Deathmatch, though with the added fun of the gravity gun. We would grab toilets and launch them at each other, toss off explosive barrels, and generally amuse each other throwing debris around. Sam did surprisingly well at holding his own. He got me more than once in a completely fair fight.

Today we played Counterstrike, which is one of the more popular games on the net. We ran around as counter-terrorists, taking on a bunch of bots while working as a team. He did very well again, and both of us had a great time doing it.

There's another Half-Life 2 mod being worked on that lets two people play through the official game together cooperatively. I can't wait for that to be finished up.

Sam had his first soccer game of the season today

September 26, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam had his first soccer game of the season today. He was his typical self, goofing off when he was on the sidelines, occasionally falling to the ground at seemingly random moments when he was in the game. Still, he also managed to score four goals and generally work well with the rest of his team.

Getting to the game was fairly exciting, way out in west Eugene. I had Emma as well, so I was hauling her, our gear, and trying to lead Sam to the particular field. Fortunately we ran into a few other parents who were equally lost. We banded together as an impromptu tribe for survival.

For having nothing in particular planned, it'...

September 25, 2005 by Adam in Family

For having nothing in particular planned, it's been a fairly busy weekend. Friday night had both Yayoe and Dave and Kirsten coming over, at different times, while Jamie was off at her friend Victoria's house. My week-long illness was mostly over by that point, but the help was still welcome. Dave enjoyed himself, tossing the kids about the yard.

On Saturday, Jamie announced that she'd finally fell ill herself. I tried to give her time to rest, always a challenge with strong-willed children. She whipped up a wonderful soup with a name I can't pronounce, and then we both left the house at three to leave the kids in Dave's care again. Strangely, we ran into Seraph and Robbie at mom's house while we were watching an old 60's movie.

I've had the kids for much of today as well, trying to make Jamie rest. I've been largely unsuccessful as she ended up cleaning and doing various projects in our bedroom, mostly hanging paintings and candle holders. The kids and I did have a fun library run this morning, though, returning with about fifteen books for them and one for me.

In a few moments, I'll be leaving to take Sam to this year's first soccer game. We practiced a little today, with the main goal being not to fall down as much.

Well hello again to all

September 24, 2005 by Jenny in Jenny

Well hello again to all. I finially got time to sit down and write. My neighbors are gone for the next 6 days so i only have my kids. It is like a whole new world. They are all hear all the time so i'm enjoying the piece. I had two kid for a reason not 5 plus two parents, who parden my french ,have thier heads completely up thier bunholes. Well so we have started the new school year with a very good foot forward. Destin really likes his new teacher she doesn't let him get away with much, which is really good because he has turned into a young man.Jordan started speach therepy last week so thats a good thing. He has move to the kindergarden roon a few weeks again and in talking much better. Well my life is still kind of boring. Still talking on internet with many people but not yet meet anyone or talked on phone. I'm looking at thing as i'm living life via email, but that works as really safe sex, or maybe just harmless stimuly.Well for the most part of life things are good with me i still love my new car, i now feel complete. My people at work are tired of hearing about my car , and they think we should get married. I think thats a good idea because, its much cheaper then marrying a man, plus he will not leave for a younger model(he-He). Not with the gas prices the way they are.Well i hope u all are well sounds like adam u have been sick. Mom have a great time and dez did get postcard. Seraph hope evrythings good. Sadie we still miss u.yayoe did dad talk to u about dinner i don't have boys that night. The boys and i send our love to all.

Saturday morning with coffee, catalogs, and s...

September 24, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Saturday morning with coffee, catalogs, and stolen wireless from some nearby home- have I found shangrila? Honestly, the east coast in late September is a little bit of heaven, but only compared to the rest of the seasons. It couldn't hold a candle to the Willamette valley, of course.

Today begins the Hurricane Relief Coalition's Week of Solidarity and Action. I'm going into the office to paint big canvases with the coalition's logo this afternoon. Fortunately, the hundred and fifty Williams tutors are almost placed in the local schools, so I have more time to help out.

Then Anna and I may go to see Luke Newton, who is at a weird philanthropist's conference in upstate New York. Yeah!

Mom, I have your comment about Rick Steves as my screen saver marquee. Adam, I love the image of coffee fueling your puppet body, like the tin man squeeking for oil in The Wizard of Oz.

Mocha Friday

September 23, 2005 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. I'm feeling increasingly recovered, though still a bit achy. Hopefully by this weekend I'm be mostly myself again.

I'm not quite sure what's happening this weekend. I know Dave's watching the kids tomorrow afternoon. There's endless house projects to work on. A little relaxation would be nice, as well as spending time with Sam. Emma's been monopolizing all my free time and poor Sam gets stuck with the short straw.

Sam got these animal trading cards from a Ranger Rick subscription through my mom. He was very excited about them, and so we created a little card game out of them. It was pretty fun, especially getting to play with just Sam for awhile. I love that kid.

Hi, sweeties

September 23, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi, sweeties. We're now in Kracow, staying in a really fancy hotel with bathtubs about seven feet long. It is easy to see why Dick enjoyed Poland so much.
The tour spent yesterday in Auschwitz with the predictable
physical reaction, tears, on the part of many members in the group. The only place I had to fight back nausea was in the room with human hair and the material made from the hair. I had brought two stones from Oregon on the trip. I left one in the Old Jewish Cemetery in Prague, and one at Birkenau. It's easy to say Never Again, but we have to remember subsequent atrocities such as Rawanda.

My dad has this funny thing about teen dramas

September 22, 2005 by Adam in Adam

My dad has this funny thing about teen dramas. We always used to make fun of him when we were kids (and still do on occasion). Still, he did go to an all-boys boarding school, so I figure he had a pretty good excuse.

Of course, now I find myself obsessively watching The OC, about two episodes a day, slowly catching up to the current season. Oh, sure, I can point to the hysterical comedy or the quality of the acting. One of the main characters is basically a nerd who's into video games and comic books. I can give excuses about my high school dating scene being terribly uneventful.

In the end, it's still a teen drama and I've found yet another unexpected way that I'm just like my father.

I was feeling pretty good yesterday, up until...

September 22, 2005 by Adam in Family

I was feeling pretty good yesterday, up until the time I got home. I somehow powered through getting the kids to bed, and then started down another spiral of misery and woe. I kept waking up in the middle of the night feeling horrible, finally getting up around seven in the morning.

I managed to drag myself to work, though I'm only slowly getting things together. Hopefully the caffiene can move my puppet body about, maintaining the illusion of a productive worker.

I§m still having a terrible time with Czech k...

September 21, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

I§m still having a terrible time with Czech keyboards, and haven§t been able to open mz e=mail because I can§t tzpe in a dash. We have left Prague and hacve come to the mountains. I have never walked so far so frequentlz. I have lots to share. Jamie, I did pick up something in Paris for your birthday. Many years, and many hugs. PS Rick Steves sucks.
Love, Mom

I was sick as a dog yesterday

September 21, 2005 by Adam in Family

I was sick as a dog yesterday. I left work around 3 pm with a headache and upset stomach. Riding my bike home was fairly grueling, but I made it there. Initially I watched a show quietly, taking breaks to writhe around on the floor until my nausea passed. I took a long nap and woke up to eat crackers and keep an eye on Emma.

As the evening continued, I felt quite a bit better. Jamie brought me tea in the bathtub and generally kept the kids out of my hair. I had a long sleep and woke up nearly normal.

Well, my semi-annual computer upgrade and shu...

September 20, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Projects

Well, my semi-annual computer upgrade and shuffle is over. Jamie now has my brass and wood case, Sam has my old computer, and my new computer is hooked up and ready to go.

My new computer is certainly fast and spiffy, though it's hard to really tell unless I'm playing certain high-end computer games. I like the new LCD monitor for the most part. It has a native resolution of 1280 x 1024, which is weird. Everything is smaller but the bigger size of the monitor makes up for it.

I preordered F.E.A.R., a creepy survival/horror game that's coming out in a few weeks. It looks like it'll be the first game to really push the limits of my system. Should be fun.

I'm pretty tired today, waiting for my tea to...

September 20, 2005 by Adam in Family

I'm pretty tired today, waiting for my tea to kick in.

Jamie went off to Angie's last night after I got home, so the kids and I played all evening. For the hour before dinner, we pretended we were monsters, being chased by evil hunters. Then it was "Breakfast for Dinner", complete with waffles and sausages. Both kids were pretty hungry, wanting seconds. Emma was poking at her bagel with a fork, when all of a sudden she laid her head down and fell asleep.

Sam patiently watched a show with me until she woke up a half an hour later, and we transitioned to bath time and getting ready for bed. I brought them outside to watch the sunset and see a couple bats flying around, catching bugs in the twilight. Eventually I got a hold of Jamie and she said she'd come home. We waited by the window for a long while, being silly and watching cars. As nine o'clock approached, I tucked the kids into bed and Jamie finally came home.

I snuck downstairs for my typical evening routine, cereal and a show. Now it's back to work for me and the cycle of life continues.

Few people know this, but our bathtub is a ti...

September 20, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Few people know this, but our bathtub is a time machine.

Many months ago, Sam made up a game where he'd dunk his head under the water, hold his breath as long as possible, and he'd show up in some other time. It's grown to the point where any time I say it's bath time, there's always the question "Can we play the time travel game?"

Initially it was the typical stuff, going to meet your parents as a kid, talking to your future self, and seeing what the computer games of 2050 were like. Since then, the bathtub has acquired new capabilities, such as the ability to travel through space, into people's imaginations, movies, and games, as well as sporting an assortment of weapons to deal with any possible threat. Emma is often the unwitting side-kick, going along on their sudsy ride.

Last night we went to the Farm at the End of the World, where he met farmer Bob and his cows, right before the Earth blew up.

Happy birthday wishes to Jamie! It was so mu...

September 19, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Happy birthday wishes to Jamie! It was so much fun to see Adam, Jamie and the kidos this weekend. Isa had a great time running around with her cousins, but I think she has now gone to the zoo often enough that her interest in sitting and watching the animals is waining. It was alson nice just to chat with Adam and Jamie with out a large crowd around.
On Sadie's note about this being Talk Like A Pirate Day...We have been discussing this at home the last few nights, and Isa has taken to saying "Aye, aye, Captian!", I fear there has been to much Peter Pan in her life.
I've been on a made cleaning spree the last two days. First making a mess by gutting closets and shelves, and then neatly putting things back. In two days I've only managed three rooms. Sigh...
(Note to Mom: In your e-mail you had made some referance to a hotel reservation I was making. I'm not sure I know about this, or if you just referenced the wrong kid. Let me know, as I'd hate for you to get some place and not have a room.)

Happy Intaaaaaarnational Talk Like a Pirate D...

September 19, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Happy Intaaaaaarnational Talk Like a Pirate Day!

I can tell that Summer is ending and Fall is ...

September 19, 2005 by Adam in Family

I can tell that Summer is ending and Fall is around the corner. This morning ride to work was quite crisp and I ended up wearing a long-sleeve shirt for the first time in ages.

The drive back from Portland was relatively uneventful, with everyone puttering around for the rest of the day. I managed to shuffle all the computers around, giving my second computer to Jamie, turning my primary computer into my secondary one, and finally getting my new computer hooked up.

Emma and I played a lot, filling a wading pool with warm water, playing in the basement, and generally having fun. Sam rediscovered an old bridge-building game on the computer, making his bridges and testing it with a train that often tumbled into the river. Jamie took it easy after she unpacked, making us dinner and relaxing a bit.

We've had a pleasant weekend so far, enjoying...

September 18, 2005 by Adam in Family

We've had a pleasant weekend so far, enjoying the wonders of Portland. The drive up was a little grueling, being stuck in traffic for an hour due to a wreck around Salem. Once we got here, we all collapsed and took it easy for the rest of the evening. The next morning we were all up bright and early, going to the zoo with Seraph, Robbie, and Isabell. The naked mole rats were a little boring, but the baby monkey was hysterically funny.

Afterwards Jim and I headed to Fry's. I picked up a new LCD monitor, which I think I've grown to appreciate. It's big, has a fast refresh rate, and is easy on the eyes.

Come evening, Jamie and I went out for a birthday dinner. We went to the up-scale mall with fancy restaurants, waiting a half an hour to get in for dinner. It was nice to get out with her for awhile, a rarity to have it be without children.

It's Sunday morning now and we're taking it easy before we return home. I'll probably take the kids down to the part and help finish setting up Jim and Judy's new computer.

Last year, in Germay, Megan Wells-Jamieson me...

September 17, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Last year, in Germay, Megan Wells-Jamieson met a South Eugene grad, fell in love, and is going to visit him in his hometown in a week (before he goes off to Cambridge for his PhD... of course). As Adam remembers, the last time she saw Sam, he was two and she wasn't wearing any clothes. Please ply her with sweet Eugene breads if she knocks on your door in a week or two. She's as lovely as ever.

Travel is so broadening

September 17, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Travel is so broadening. But Adam, computer keyboards need to be internationalized. This internet cafe has its local
keyboard section and its English section. And as you can tell from yesterday's contribution, the A and W are reversed on French keyboards, and God only knows that the M has floated off. The format of typewriter keyboards was originally to make typing hard. Muy dummo idea. How about a phoenetic keyboard, like a court reporter's machine.
Anyhow, I'm now a Paris fan. The city must have, like London, taken a huge leap in population at about the same time that builders figured out how to make non-wood apartment buildings several stories high and there was a particularly graceful building style in vogue. I took the
train from Paris to Frankfort, just south of the area where
the Stallsmith family stomping grounds were. Great farm land! At Frankfort, I switched to a night train, envisioning a romantic Greta Garbo experience; the romance
must come with first class reservations, because I shared a
sleeping car with five college kids, including two American boys who played cards until 1:00 am. The Japanese
girl in the bunk above them dropped (literally) a note explaining that she and her two buddies were really tired
and asking the boys to stop playing cards. A good lesson about ethical tourism.
Prague is lovely, but cold, and I'm glad I brought my coat.
I love you all, and miss you.

Three weeks into a cripsly perfect September ...

September 16, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Three weeks into a cripsly perfect September (weather that that craves tweed and turtlenecks), we're barreled back into crumpled linen by humidity. I am frizzy. But it's Friday, so Anna and I have big plans. They'll probably involve leftover curry, a rented movie, and the shrunken apple heads we made last night.

Ah, the domestic life.

It's a Mocha Friday, though I'm still waiting...

September 16, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's a Mocha Friday, though I'm still waiting for my coffee buddy to show up so that I can taste that heavenly beverage. It's also a half day for me as we're heading up to Portland as soon as Sam gets out of school. My morning at work is packed, with upgrades and meetings galore.

Sam was in a foul mood when I arrived at home last night, and Emma was taking a late nap. Fortunately as soon as we got to soccer practice, he perked right up and seemed his normal self. This was the first time I assisted with the coaching as I wasn't watching Emma. The six-year-old boys were driving me crazy. They couldn't stop wrestling and touching each other. I was sorely tempted to break out the duct tape and take care of the situation in a more direct fashion. Sam seemed angelic by comparison.

Generic Heading

September 16, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

In paris and alls well

The kids wore me out last night

September 15, 2005 by Adam in Family

The kids wore me out last night. As soon as I got home, we went outside to play and walk around the block. Jamie left to go with Angie and her friends to the Art Museum, returning shortly before eight. Fortunately she'd left us with a tasty polenta dinner, which of course Sam refused to eat. As the evening wound down, Emma was screaming how she hated me for taking away her toy kitties when it was bath time. Sam got a bloody nose and kept asking where mom was. By the time Jamie returned, I was happy to turn over the reigns.

I'm starting to get excited about our Portland trip we're taking tomorrow. It always seems fairly relaxing up there, I'm eager to see Seraph, Robbie, and Isabell, and I've got a gift certificate for Fry's that's been calling to me for nearly a year.

Well, I made it though my first two exams, an...

September 15, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Well, I made it though my first two exams, and am taking a short break from writing the longer of my two papers due tomorrow. I will avoid mentioning what wee-hour of the morning it is right now! One way or another this term will be over tomorrow afternoon.
My schedule for next term had been shaping up nicly, with the offer of being done with the school/work week by Thursday. Unfortunately one of my classes was canceled, and I am now taking a Friday afternoon class. Sigh...
Robbie and Isa are setteling into the school year routine quickly. Isa is having loads of fun at school, and is so far enjoying her Tuesday/Thursday mornings with her friend Bella.
Robbie's kids sound fun, and he got a pet rat "Scabbers" for his class room. We will have him at the house on the weekends and we've already started reminding each other that that means the doors will need to stay closed to prevent a tasty snack for the cats.
Yes, that is cats in the plural. Mom's cat Mischa is trying to settle in, actually venturing out a little this evening. He tries to hide during the day, but ventures out from under the bed at night or when Ripply (who is not so nice to him) is outside. Right now he finally dicided he would be ok sharing a food dish with another feline, and is quietly munching away in the kitchen.
Sigh, the life and times of our family...

Well, I'm about to head into the first of sev...

September 14, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Well, I'm about to head into the first of several exams. Only two papers to write tonight, nothing like feeling like I've shot myself in the foot!
Haven't had much time to post lately. But, huge hugs to all, and thank you thank you for all of the help over Labor Day weekend. You're all quiet saints.

sitting hre in dallas-fort orth

September 14, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

sitting hre
in dallas-fort orth. The flight ws unremarkable exceptfor a thunderstorm. eeing the cluds lit from undernath by the lightening was amazing.Only we and the gods have seen this sight.
Seraaph, I forgoy yhr gray skirt, stupidly, but thank you, thank you. Love to all, mom

I'm a stud

September 14, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Projects

I'm a stud. The cable arrived yesterday. I plugged it in and pushed the on button. Everything turned on. I don't know if I've ever got all the various connections working the first time around. Well, it wasn't absolutely perfect. The memory wasn't in the optimal slots and I'd reversed the leads for the power and hard drive LEDs. Two minutes of switching things around fixed those problems.

Now is the tedious work of installing various software on the device. As the years roll on, strange things get installed on computers. Now I need to track down the CDs or web sites and get it working properly. I'm hoping everything is ready by this weekend so I can take it to Portland and polish it up.

Oof! The flurry of September's activities (re...

September 14, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Oof! The flurry of September's activities (replacing the fourth of our thirty group heads who graduated last spring, organizing the hurricane releif coalition, placing three hundred tutors in the local public schools, recruiting for our Scholarships for Service positions, etc.) is a little overwhelming at the moment. It is nice to feel needed, of course. Just makes me a little punchy.

Bob is driving me to the airport, and I am re...

September 14, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Bob is driving me to the airport, and I am relatively organized, thanks to a kindly staff of secretaries, helpful teenagers, sweet kids, etc.
So, as the poem goes,
Here I am, off to Europe,
Home of the "Du" and the "Oui"
I am ready for Europe,
But is Europe ready for me?
Love to all, Mom

The week continues along, occasionally bumpy ...

September 13, 2005 by Adam in Family

The week continues along, occasionally bumpy but still moving forward. Jamie was dead tired yesterday. I think I spent all of fifteen minutes with her. She apologized to me this morning, which was nice. In some ways, not having Sam around as a helper is hitting her hard.

Sam's adjusting fairly well to school. He did have some problems on Monday when they dropped him off. Sam had teary eyes and said, "But Emma will miss me, mom, she wants to stay and sit on my lap." Jamie called to chat about finding time when Sam can do homework in between soccer practice, dinner, bath time, and so on.

Emma continues to be two. I had her while Jamie went to the gym this morning. She happily chatted with the people in the bagel store, munching down her entire bagel. Later on we explored the buildings on campus, still empty before the term starts. She also woke us both up at four this morning, sending me downstairs to return with a bowl of cereal to feed her always-hungry tiny body.

Well, the magic cable is on the truck waiting...

September 13, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Projects

Well, the magic cable is on the truck waiting for delivery. Hopefully by the time I get home I can plug things in and turn them on.

I also ran into a weird issue with my ancient monitor. Everything was blue. It's a 19 inch CRT monitor from the days when they were expensive and impressive. I swapped it with the kid's matching 19 inch monitor. I think what I'll do this weekend is pick up a new 19 inch LCD monitor from Fry's this weekend. Jamie's parents got me a gift certificate for Fry's and I'm finally getting to go to Portland to spend money on something.

Sam's been playing Dungeon Siege 2 after doin...

September 12, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

Sam's been playing Dungeon Siege 2 after doing work around the house for "DS2 points". He's gotten into it quite a bit, getting past the place where the demo ends. I've been playing along side him for the most part, keeping an eye on his party's health and clicking the "Drink Health Potion" button at appropriate times. On occasion it gets rather tough, though it's often easier than other games in the genre if you're somewhat paying attention. It's about the right challenge for a six-year-old, I think.

Once my new computer gets installed and ready, I'll be eagerly awaiting getting some of the newer games to try it out. F.E.A.R. will likely be the first one. After that, Oblivion, which will probably keep me busy for a couple months.

I found some time over the weekend and assemb...

September 12, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Projects

I found some time over the weekend and assembled everything, though I'm still waiting for that one cable adapter before I can turn anything on. At the moment, it's just an expensive piece of art.

Fortunately, FedEx is telling me that the magic cable has crossed the country since I ordered it Friday. It may make it into town tonight or tomorrow and then I'll be able to turn it on and start installing things. Installing software on a new computer reminds me of the smell of fresh mowed grass. Everything is new and full of possibilities.

I was admittedly a bit grumpy this morning

September 12, 2005 by Adam in Family

I was admittedly a bit grumpy this morning. Too much coffee, I suspect, as well as having the kids be a little grumpy as well. I watched the kids for awhile and then broke free for a short trip to the mall where I picked up a present for Jamie. We hung out at the house, with the kids and I puttering about. Towards the end of the day, we all decided to go to Amazon park.

The day was beautiful and both Sam and Emma made friends very quickly. Sam played pretend with a four-year-old named Emmet, while Emma was followed by another girl her age named Chloe. Jamie and I kept an eye on them and otherwise enjoyed the scenery.

Towards the end of the day, we went out for pizza and ice cream. I picked up Lady and the Tramp, which the kids are watching now. Soon enough we'll be getting ready for bed and the work week ahead.

Everything was red and white at our house yes...

September 11, 2005 by Adam in Family

Everything was red and white at our house yesterday, with large posters proclaiming "Go Big Red" in our window. Jamie had her brother and dad over for the afternoon to watch the Nebraska football game. She spent much of the morning cooking food out of a family recipe book. Probably the most quirky food item was Husker's Popcorn, which was normal popcorn with red candy melted on them.

The kids and I spent a bunch of time hanging out, usually one at a time. Emma and I took a walk down to the playground, fiddled with playdough, and did some coloring. Sam and I worked around the house, including washing Jamie's car, sweeping the porch, and taking down our porch cover. This wasn't necessarily out of the goodness of his heart, though. He's been saving up "DS2 points" so that he can start playing a new computer game I got for him. Yesterday was the big day and he finally enjoyed the fruits of his labor.

I have no idea what's in store for today. I'd like to go shopping for Jamie's birthday. Jamie's dad is still about, and rumor has it that Brant is in town. We'll see how it goes.

All my parts arrived yesterday, so the grand ...

September 09, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Projects

All my parts arrived yesterday, so the grand computer shuffle has begun. I started by emptying the case of Jamie's current computer. It's one of my oldest and dearest case mods. I remember working on it with my dad about five years ago. Holes were cut to make windows in the side. I spray painted everything black, as you could only get beige components back then.

I then transferred everything to a new case just so Jamie wouldn't be inconvenienced by my fiddlings for the next few days. I'd also have a fully functioning computer in case I needed it for something.

I did run into a few snags. The first was realizing that I didn't know how to connect important wires like the power switch to the motherboard after I'd disconnected it. I'd purged my old manuals long ago but eventually got the website in Taiwan to cough up an electronic manual. The computer turns on now, though I haven't dared hook it up as it's still early in the morning.

The other snag is around my new computer. I guess I've been snoozing away these last couple years. It turns out that the new and fancy motherboards take a 24-pin power supply attachment, rather than the usual 20-pin ones. I bought a 20-pin power supply, of course. Fortunately you can buy adapters. Mostly it just slows down the install process.

Since I'm not in a giant rush, I'll probably order online instead of searching around tech stores this weekend. It'll still be built in plenty of time for the latest round of games.

After work yesterday, Sam, Emma, and I went o...

September 09, 2005 by Adam in Family

After work yesterday, Sam, Emma, and I went out to Sam's soccer practice. Most of the time I spent trying to manage Emma and her wild ways. I was trying to take a picture of Sam playing, turning my back on Emma for about 30 seconds. The first time, I caught her taking her shoes off. I scolded her and told her it was important to protect her feet. The second time, she'd removed her diaper and was letting it all hang out. We spent the rest of the time in the car.

John is coming over tonight to spend the night with Sam. Sam continues to settle into school, making friends and meeting teachers. It's always hard to pry information from him about how things are going, but I think it's generally okay.

I got to go along to take Sam to his first da...

September 08, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

I got to go along to take Sam to his first day of school.
Emma sat right down and started chatting with the other first graders at her table. I called Dez, who said that he
liked his teacher but he and his friends are in different rooms .
I leave next Tuesday - thanks to everyone for help, advice, etc.

Emma has been growing up in so many ways

September 08, 2005 by Jamie in Emma

Emma has been growing up in so many ways. Each day as we drop off Sam she gets this pained look on her face..."But I'll MISS Sammy!" Her sleeping issues I believe are growing pains, as she complains of legs hurting and needs me to rub them in the middle of the night and is constantly hungry. Fortunately these episodes are usually followed by a few days of great sleep. We'll keep our fingers crossed.

Sam's first day of first grade was yesterday

September 08, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sam's first day of first grade was yesterday. I think he generally liked it. He says his teacher is nice and that school lunch was pretty good. He also has a new group of friends that he's gathered up, as well as a new club based on a pirate computer game. Today's the first full day, as yesterday was only a few hours. Hopefully he'll survive the experience.

Emma's been a bit wacky these last few days. She's not unpleasant or unkind, necessarily. It's just ever clear to us that she's two years old. I spend my afternoons following her about and making sure Hurricane Emma doesn't cause too much distruction. Last night she didn't get to bed until quite late and she crawled into our bed sometime in the middle of the night. Ah, the joys of waking up to the impacts of tiny little feet on one's belly.

We all went up to Sam's school yesterday evening

September 07, 2005 by Adam in Sam

We all went up to Sam's school yesterday evening. We met his teacher and found out which class he was going to be in. It looks like he'll be with his friends Gavin and Maddy, so hopefully today won't be a completely new experience. He also had soccer practice afterwards, which he picked up quite easily. This year we're going to work on having him kick the ball and then remain standing.

Sam's a little nervous about school starting today. Wednesdays only go until 1:30, so hopefully he'll be eased into the situation. Still, going for a full day is going to be a major change. I think we're going for school lunches on most days, for example. We've also told Emma about how Sam will start going to school soon. "I will miss him," she said sadly.

It is eerie to begin doing the things that I ...

September 06, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

It is eerie to begin doing the things that I did last year over again, coordinating the same programs, and seeing my old students in this new, little-bit-more-experienced context. It's equally wonderful to feel myself changing at least as quickly as they are. Despite the madness and failures and complications, my students are rock stars, and I am greatful for this new year.

It's the start of the work week, and I'm dela...

September 06, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's the start of the work week, and I'm delaying getting out of the house. The last couple days of the weekend were quite pleasant. On Saturday we mostly puttered around, taking the kids to a park, dropping them off with Dave for awhile, and then heading out to fifth street market for a snack in the afternoon.

The main excitement there was finding a car that had caught on fire. Within a few minutes the fire department showed up, but it was still rather exciting. People were leaping into their cars next to this one, trying to get them out of the way before the flames spread. Crazy.

Sunday morning was fairly odd. I was handed Emma a bit after four in the morning and she didn't go to sleep until ten. By the time Jamie woke up, I was pretty exhausted and took a long nap around the same time my family was having a brunch for Seraph and Robbie. Sorry, guys.

Yesterday afternoon we took the kids out to Alton Baker Park to run about. They were both in a somewhat grumpy mood, though it was generally improved once they got to a new and interesting place. Sam enjoyed picking blackberries for me, which were incredibly sweet. They both had a good time climbing a big pile of rocks as well.

The day ended with a BBQ at Jeff and Sharon's house. All of Sam's soccer kids and parents were invited, so it was a mad collection of boys running about in the yard. All injuries were minor and Sam had a good time.

Sam has a fairly important evening tonight

September 06, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam has a fairly important evening tonight. At around four in the afternoon, we're heading up to his school for an ice cream social. Even more importantly, he finds out who his teacher is and which students will be in his class. They're having three combined first and second grade classes, so there's a one-in-three chance he'll be with his friend John.

After that is his first soccer practice. We had a BBQ at the Musgroves last night where a bunch of the soccer parents and kids were invited. Sam had a great time running around like a maniac for most of the time. Odds are he'll sleep very well at night from here on out.

I'm in the eye of the storm of the Where Am I...

September 05, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

I'm in the eye of the storm of the Where Am I?! orientation, and other than a few blips, things couldn't be going more smoothly. Hurrah! The new house is shaping up beautifully, and we almost have everything on the walls and in the closets.

It was an exciting start to a three-day weekend

September 04, 2005 by Adam in Family

It was an exciting start to a three-day weekend. After breakfast, Sam and I headed over to Seraph and Robbie's Eugene home. We spent a couple hours there, pruning and hauling away yard debris. I ate far too many of the bagels Yayoe brought. Sam and Isabell played some sort of alien puppy game. Good times.

By the time the afternoon had rolled around, everyone was getting a little stir crazy again. We loaded up the stroller and took a long walk down to the library. It was a beautiful day, and everyone's moods improved. Later that night, Jamie whipped up a tasty batch of home-made soup and Dave and Kirsten came over for dinner.

I have the kids to myself this morning as Jamie goes off with Angie, and then Jamie and I get some time to ourselves after we ship the kids off with Dave for an hour. I think Jamie has painting and shelf hanging projects lined up for me this afternoon.

I know, a big shock, Jamie has a life, too! ...

September 03, 2005 by Jamie in Jamie

I know, a big shock, Jamie has a life, too! I had a wonderful weekend at the beach with JUST my mom which gave me hope for the detachment of these last pesky apron strings. Emma is fully weaned, and exuberantly vocal. Fortunately it is usually words exerting her independence and not screams and fits (although we have our share of those around this house as well). My schedule will be changing next week when Sam goes to first grade, Emma and I will have to explore Eugene unencumbered by the homebody who never wants to do anything. I've been having time in the eves to read again, and just finished Tess of the D'Urbervilles (again) which makes this girl happy to live in the time of possibility and enlightenment. We've come a long way, babes!

Well once again hello to all

September 03, 2005 by Jenny in Jenny

Well once again hello to all. Let me know what time we ae getting together tomorrow. I can come help. I've meet a guy online and he may be coming down this weekend from portland so ia time frame would be good. well my boys went of camping with darren. So this weekend i'm home alone but going to try to make it a fun one. Destin took a kick but camp all week learning tyqwando, { insert i know the speling is wrong} which he has had a great time at. Seraph you will be proud. Well to all i send my love. Let me know about tomorrow. And once again to adam hats off you are the most caring, kind, loving, giving to others, awsom, happy , you are going to heaven for this computer which me and my kids both love. I know you had a spot in heaven but now you just moved up to first place. I thank you again and so do my kids. Jordan can now play dino defender and dez can get online. I don't know how to repay you, maybe saying i love you and thanks everyday. The boys and i are going to do something really nice for you when they get back.

Random thoughts for this week

September 02, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Random thoughts for this week...when I came home, the cat food Aric and Anna left for Mischa was gone, the water in the cat bowl was filthy,and my kitchen floor was really dirty. I couldn't figure out why. I was sitting on the deck patting Mischa, with the kitchen door open. I heard a funny noise in the kitchen, and discovered a momma raccoon and three fat little babies scarfing down Mischa's food. She looked at me disdainfully, until I finally jumped up and down and hollered.

It's been almost exactly two years since I up...

September 02, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Projects

It's been almost exactly two years since I upgraded my main computer. I've moved away from buying the absolute best, like I did when I plunked down $3,000 for a Dell about ten years ago. Now I'm spending $1,000 for a vastly more powerful system, but such is the way of the tech industry. As a general rule of thumb, my new computer is about twice as fast as the old one.

Anyway, my new computer should be quite spiffy. The parts have yet to ship, but it should be able to play all the latest games perfectly, and keep me going into the future as well.

There's other things I'm hoping are speeded up. Burning DVDs is currently painfully slow, as are certain video editing projects. With luck I can get all my video tapes onto a hard drive, just in case the tape disintegrates.

It's been a rather pleasant last couple of days

September 02, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's been a rather pleasant last couple of days. Jamie went off with Victoria last night, so the kids and I made pizza and played in the yard. Later on, Jamie and I stayed up way too late watching the Pamela Anderson roast on Comedy Central, trying not to laugh too hard and wake up Emma.

This weekend is hopefully going to be fairly low-key, after two fairly exciting weekends. Seraph sent out a plea to help with gardening at her house, and Sam's already agreed to be my assistant. Other than that, some downtime would be nice.

Sam lost another tooth a couple days ago. He's getting to be a pro at these sort of things. It's strange to think that in a few short days he'll be going into first grade. Already he's started reading random things as he moves through the world. I have to be careful keeping him away from certain graffiti.

Emma's a jewel, though very strong-minded. Last night she spent a long while with her tea set, pouring water from one container to another. She also had a lot of fun helping me make pizza. I threatened to cook her after she'd covered herself with dough and flour. Mmm . . . tasty pizza babies.

Hello to all! STAC (the student committee I ...

September 01, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Hello to all! STAC (the student committee I am on) will be hosting a book sale during the first week of out next term (early October), to raise money for the huricane relief. We are hoping to use the money to create back-to-school bags for the kids and/or classroom school supply boxes for teachers from the areas hit. If you have any books you'd like to donate I can pick them up this weekend.
We'll be heading down either Friday or Saterday (early), depending on schedules. Love to all.

This site, adamandjamie

September 01, 2005 by Adam in Adam

This site, adamandjamie.com, has it's DNS hosted at a company called DirectNIC.com. Well, it turns out their headquarters is in the middle of New Orleans, where there's currently massive flooding and looting. Fortunately the building is being secured by a guy who's also blogging. It's pretty crazy stuff, as they work around the clock to keep things locked up and the power running. With luck, they'll keep doing their job and everything on this site will keep running smoothly. Pretty crazy to think how fragile all this technology is.

It's been a pretty exhausing day of continual...

August 31, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's been a pretty exhausing day of continual meetings, following yesterday's all day meetings. Plus the mild cold that Jamie and the kids had has finally caught up to me. Fortunately it's pretty easy to manage.

Sam's on his last couple days of Summer. We were out in the backyard last night, letting Emma chase us around with the hose. Still, there's a crispness in the air that suggests that Fall is on its way. Already I've started wearing a windbreaker to work in the morning.

The server problems have driven me crazy the ...

August 30, 2005 by Adam in Adam

The server problems have driven me crazy the last couple days. I get pretty frantic, unable to sleep well or think about much else. Fortunately I think everything's on the mend. A few more days of fiddling and things should be back to normal.

My mom picked up a flintlock rifle for me and is currently taking it around to a gun store to have it cleaned. He's also taking it to a gun show to see if anyone can figure out it's history. Supposedly it was made in Germany, but I don't know much else.

Summer is coming to a close. It actually rained yesterday, much to the kid's delight. They broke out the umbrellas and wanted to stay out as long as they could.

Emma loved the beach

August 30, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Emma loved the beach. I spent a tremendous amount of time following her around as she played in her giant sandbox. I think her favorite thing to do was discovering little critters and parts of critters, handing them to me to carry around. I didn't let her wade around in the water too much, as she ended up getting pretty cold, though she would have happily splashed away all day.

When we were inside, she spent a lot of time with Natalie. The two of them crawled about and didn't get in too much trouble. The only hard part about the beach was that she had a hard time sleeping. I frequently got kicked out. And the last fifteen minutes of the drive back home was pretty bad too.

We're back! I just recovered my main server ...

August 30, 2005 by Adam in Family

We're back! I just recovered my main server from a catastrophic failure due to trojans slipping through a security hole in the browser. Needless to say, it sucked. I stayed up until one in the morning, woke up at five in the morning, went to work, came home after lunch, and only just now got things somewhat working. I even talked to Microsoft for awhile, an experience I relate to a preview of Hell.

Other than that, the weekend was pretty good. I did get a bad sunburn, but had a great time playing in the pool getting it. The kids all played together and we had many long visits to the beach. The weather was great, except for the last day which was a bit cloudy. All-in-all, it was quite nice.

I'm going to see if I can get the last of the server things working, have dinner with some visiting coworkers, and then hopefully get to bed early.

Adam Adam Adam many thanks for your help with...

August 26, 2005 by Yayoe in Yayoe

Adam Adam Adam many thanks for your help with Jenny's computer. She is so happy! Wow...Now she will be able to keep up with all the family goings on! Meanwhile, here's a mold update. "THEY" are digging up the front of my house and putting in a French drain. The yard looks like a war zone trench. It's a big fat mess that I'm trying to ignore. Once the source of the mold (seeping water against the house) has been "remediated" then they seal the wall in the basement and clean it up with a hepa filter vaccum. The mold count in that room is over 10,000 which explains why my allergies never got better even with 5 years of shots. Lohring actually cleaned and straighted up the basement! A miracle I would say!

Adam, the muzzle loading rifle that your Mom ...

August 26, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Adam, the muzzle loading rifle that your Mom brought back was your great great grandfathers then your great grandfathers. It was used by the family and saw action during the Civil War. The gun was then passed down to Grandma Eddies father, Myron Jones, hence the M carved into the stock. The date is the date of manufacture and there is a serial number on the brass plate of the stock. The manufacture is unknown and it was probably custom made at an individual gun shop as there were not "gun companies" back then. Usually the gun smith would stamp his name into the stock plate or tool it into the leather strap. The strap obviously is long gone. The story is that Grandpa Jones shot his first rabbit with that gun although there couldn't have been much left of the rabbit. Grandma Eddie, who was a good hunter in her own right, had fired the gun and I had fired it once during a Civil War re-enactment. It was stolen from Normalville several years ago and retrieved by the State Police and is probably worth several thousand dollars. Although the sentimental and historic value can't be measured. I know that Uncle Phil always pestered Mom about giving it up but Grandpa Jones had given it to her and she hung on to it. It used to hang above the fireplace in Normalville until I removed it to Columbus, sorry I hadn't had much time to keep it oiled. It needs a good cleaning also. Enjoy!

Hello to all

August 26, 2005 by Jenny in Jenny

Hello to all. We all have to give Adam a big thankyou for now I can get online. He just got me a new computer, and I love it. I'm typing on an all black computer that works and I'm on cloud nine. To Adam hats off, you are the worlds best brother and I truly thank you, you can't understand how much happiness this has brought to my kids and I.You now have a one way ticket to Heaven in my eyes. To everyone else please say thankyou to Adam everyday, because now we are all together again on an Internet level.Praise to the internet god! I hope everyone is doing well. I miss you all and will now be online everyday .Adam I can't say thankyou enough for the computer and love to you all.Back in touch with all!

It was the last of the kid's swimming lessons...

August 26, 2005 by Adam in Family

It was the last of the kid's swimming lessons today. Both graduated with honors. Sam's big news was that he jumped off the HIGH diving board into the water, a pretty big leap. I'm proud of that kid. Attached is a picture of the kids with their instructor.

My mom came over for dinner and I handed over her laptop to her. She's been watching the kids and letting us take care of things before we leave tomorrow. I gave the garden a good long drink as the weather's so warm.

She also brought along an old flintlock rifle, which Sam and I oohed and aahed over. Jamie wasn't too keen about us mounting it over the fireplace, so I'm not quite sure where it'll end up. It has "1835" stamped on it, though I'm not sure if it was the year it was made or some sort of batch number. It also has the letter M carved into the wood, presumably for Milton.

Jenny called to let me know that her new computer was working quite well. She even got online and things seem to be working much more smoothly.

Now I'm off to pack and prepare some more. Great fun.

A short p

August 25, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

A short p.s. to the gun story: Bob came over for dinner, and
entertained me no end with his four minute trick of removing the padlocks (they were combination locks, and I couldn't hang around at the TSA center long enough to get the combinations) from the guncase. Guess the airport isn't safe from the invasion of the Civil War re-enactment hordes after all. It was fun to take a closer look at the gun; it has a date of 1835 engraved on the metal part of the stock.

It looks like we're heading off to the coast ...

August 25, 2005 by Adam in Family

It looks like we're heading off to the coast tomorrow with the Musgroves. Hopefully it'll be fun and relaxing, though I'm also preparing for the reality of four small kids running about.

Sam and Emma's last day of swimming lessons are today. It's been really fun for both of them, I think. Sam in particular has become very confident in his skills. Emma has become the darling of the kid's pool, saying things like "Class, look at me!" whenever she does something.

Kirsten and Dave watched the kids while Jamie and I went out to dinner. It seems like we spent the hour reminiscing about simpler times, along with figuring out what Jamie's going to do when the kids are older. The dinner itself was pretty amazing. I love fresh greens in my salad.

Had a delightful time visiting friends and th...

August 24, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Had a delightful time visiting friends and then going on to Ohio to visit Betsy and her gang. The house at Normalville looked a little forlorn all boarded up, but the crickets
lulled me to sleep and the stars were bright and clear. Bob and Betsy's farm is lovely, with almost all the remodeling work finished in the house. I was fortunate to be there the evening of Patrick's birthday party, so I got to meet Bob's
daughter, grandaughter, and youngest son, as well as get good Ohio tomatoes and corn!
God forbid that I make any criticism of the way the government operates in a part of the country where American flags proliferate, and red,white,and blue bunting adorns many homes and all used car lots, but.... The only hang-up on the trip was missing a flight as a result of the TSA (that has to stand for Transportation Security Administration)men deciding that the 150 year old muzzle loader I was bringing home for Adam, and which can't be fired because its parts are too corroded to move, presented a terrorist threat. (I suspect it will take many hours to clean it and put it into firing condition, and even then, the terrorists will have to deal with buying black powder and firing caps, and even then, they will have to load it on one knee by putting in the black powder and fixing the firing cap correctly, then stomping down the powder with this long rod.) Well, the four different
TSA officials who fussed around with this perhaps could have used their time and my tax dollars more effectively, but at least we can rest easier knowing that the Pittsburgh International Airport is safe from Civil War re-enactment buffs.

Summer is finally feeling over

August 24, 2005 by Adam in Adam

Summer is finally feeling over. It's been cool and crisp riding my bike into work. Blueberry season is nearly over. Sam starts school in a couple weeks.

All-in-all, it's been a pretty good summer. It feels nice to get the patio garden going and the house painted. I think Jamie's felt a little weary from watching two kids all day long. Hopefully the fall will ease the load a bit as Sam goes to school.

I've been trying to get back into some things that seem to have been left behind. I used to play with just Sam a lot, which hasn't happened much with Emma around. Last night we played Legos for a long while, with me talking in a funny voice for nearly an hour. I also read a superhero comic book to him at bedtime, something I used to do every night.

Sam lost another tooth yesterday

August 23, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sam lost another tooth yesterday. He tried to explain it to me, but mostly it seemed to involve sitting on the couch and hitting his mouth with a blanket. The kids had swimming lessons again, as they will for the rest of the week. What's strange is that there's only two more weeks until Sam goes back to school.

The kids were a little wacky last night. Emma was really trying to have me stay next to her as she went to sleep. She was so sweet, telling me things like "you my best friend." Jamie's recommendation was to cut the cord, and so I glumly left her crying and went downstairs. Jamie reported that as soon as I reached the last step, she fell fast asleep.

Sue, hope you got home safe and sound

August 22, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Sue, hope you got home safe and sound. As I predicted there was a letter of resignation on my desk when I came in this morning. Last day is September 2nd, two days after I have 178 apartments go vacant. Anyone care to show up and help answer phones and hold off the screaming hordes?

I survived the weekend alone with the kids

August 22, 2005 by Adam in Family

I survived the weekend alone with the kids. Sunday was a bit more difficult than the day before, though it still wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.

Saturday night was lots of fun. Dave and Kirsten came over and we had a movie watching night, watching National Treasure and eating pizza. Kirsten was a trooper, watching Emma the whole time. Sam got really into the movie, so much so that we had a treasure hunt first thing in the morning.

I took the kids to Old Navy Sunday morning, picking up some shirts for myself and Jamie. The kids were a bit wild, so I had them run around in the courtyard until it was time to head to my dad and Yayoe's for lunch. They had a good time there, but Emma was pushing her nap time. Unfortunately when I got home, she decided a nap wasn't such a good idea and she merely grumped her way into the afternoon.

Finally I gave up on being productive and threw the kids in the back yard with the sprinklers on. That was good for a long while, and combined with the Barbie Farytopia movie (which Sam liked), that kept them going until Jamie returned.

Jamie seemed much refreshed, regaling us with tales of a pod of blue whales playing just outside their window. I dropped off the movies, picked up Steam Boy to watch that evening, and Emma collapsed from exhaustion on Jamie's lap.

Jamie's off to the coast

August 20, 2005 by Adam in Family

Jamie's off to the coast. She called when she got there just to make sure I wouldn't be worried. I can tell she's been looking forward to this for a very long time.

I've been managing the kids fairly well by myself. I took them to get some food supplies for our wild weekend, and then got them ready for the fair.

They both really enjoyed the fair, though they occasionally got a little rambunctious. Emma in particular was very strong-willed about going on certain rides. I managed to drop $28 on just kid rides for the two of them. Emma really liked the canoe ride and the merry-go-round. Sam was more daring and did a few more exciting ones, happily giving each a nausea rating.

Emma fell asleep on the ride home and I tucked her into bed. Soon I'll be feeding corn to the boy and preparing for the evening festivities. We'll probably start making pizza around 4 o'clock and expecting Dave and Kirsten for a visit and a movie.

It's Mocha Friday and I'm feeling fairly relaxed

August 19, 2005 by Adam in Adam

It's Mocha Friday and I'm feeling fairly relaxed. Work is somewhat busy, but with my boss and other team members away, it's actually almost relaxing.

I got my mom's new laptop all ready and configured. My sister's new computer should be coming in a few days too. Hopefully I can get everyone's tech support needs met by the end of next week.

The bathrooms are now in REMODEL mode

August 19, 2005 by Judy in Hanes

The bathrooms are now in REMODEL mode. So after Labor Day (minus the Sopers who are going down for a few days), the beach house is closed for "reservations" until December when the Jeff Hanes' celebrate their anniversary.
So here is what we hope to accomplish:
1. bathroom toilets replaced
2. bathroom flooring and baseboards replaced
3. bathroom counter tops replaced, plus mirrors, sinks, and lighting
4. kitchen counter tops replaced
5. new stove/oven and dishwasher
6. take out the garbage disposal since Jim doesn't want us to use it because of the septic system.
7. Pellet stoves replaced by propane gas inserts and propane stove in the lower level. (Thank JIM for thinking of doing this and Dorothy for providing the financing)
8. And LATER: carpet replacement upstairs and downstairs where old

I'm slowly getting my weekend scheduled so th...

August 18, 2005 by Adam in Family

I'm slowly getting my weekend scheduled so that I keep the kids busy around the clock when Jamie's out. It looks like Saturday we're going to the fair when it opens at 11 o'clock, and then having Dave over for a pizza and movie evening. Sunday morning I think I'll try to go shopping and have lunch with my dad and Yayoe. Then we'll pine away at the window waiting for Jamie to return.

We had a pleasant evening last night. We all hung out in our front yard playing with the kids. Jamie and Sam played a little catch. Emma's favorite game was when I'd stick her on my head and pretend that I lost her. Every time I found her, she'd giggle and say "again?"

Funny story: I'm setting up the Flying Garban...

August 18, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Funny story: I'm setting up the Flying Garbanzos for the Where Am I?! orientation on the first evening of the program. Having prepared for a few concerts in my time, I asked what equipement they would need, expecting a long list of mics and amps and such. They responsped with "We'll need three armless chairs (folding chairs are fine). I think that's it." These are my kind of people. So it looks like out first event will be a very homey acoustic outdoor contra band concert with a bonfire and s'mores. I wish you could all be there.

Sam's been taking swimming lessons at Amazon park

August 18, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam's been taking swimming lessons at Amazon park. This time he's in the Flipper's class, which takes place in the big pool. Yesterday he went off the diving board all by himself, swimming to the side when he was done. At this point, he can basically swim from place to place, though his repertoire of techniques is fairly small. We're all very proud of him.

He's also got another loose tooth that's almost ready to go. Last night we estimated the value of his mouth at $18 for the going rate for teeth these days. Gotta milk the Tooth Fairy for as much as you can.

Sam's also been playing Sims 2 quite a bit lately. Before he was mostly into building and making people, but since his reading skills have improved, he can actually play the game a bit. Sure his Sims are miserable on occasion as Sam forgets to have them eat, sleep, or shower, but on the whole they're doing fairly good.

The funniest part was when he asked me "Dad, where's the button to make them have babies?" I didn't realize the birds and the bees talk would happen quite this way.

Hi guys, I leave from PDX at noon tomorrow, a...

August 17, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi guys, I leave from PDX at noon tomorrow, and return on
Tuesday afternoon. I am expecting Normalville to be hot, muggy, and lush. Ginny Hochmuth, old friend, will pick me up
tomorrow evening at the airport. What a sweetheart! I really liked the people I went to high school with, and am
looking forward to seeing everyone. However, I will miss you all.

Yesterday was crazy busy

August 17, 2005 by Adam in Family

Yesterday was crazy busy. It's assessment time at work, so I had non-stop calls from VPs and other executives who were running into problems using my assessment tool. I did manage some time with my coworker Jonathan, working on a new template for our development projects. It was fun to try something new and "prepare for the future" as it were.

Home wasn't much better. Jamie left as soon as I arrived and didn't return home until bedtime. Emma didn't take a nap yesterday, so she was pretty wacky. Still, we managed to make pizza and keep the house relatively clean. As a bonus, we got to listen to Van Halen blaring from the fairgrounds. Emma danced a little jig.

It was another very full day yesterday

August 15, 2005 by Adam in Family

It was another very full day yesterday. Breakfast was a drawn out affair of tea, sausages, bagels, and cinnamon rolls. Not leisurely, but instead a series of small nibbles in between chasing children. After breakfast I donned my painting shorts and painted the garden wall and columns. Before they were looking pretty lousy compared to our shiny new house paint job. Now they're equally cheery.

After lunch we went over to celebrate Jordan's birthday party. Sam spent the entire time in the pool with the other rambunctious kids. Emma shyly moved from toy to toy. We left early when it became clear that Emma's nap-time was long past and she crashed when we got home.

Sam and Jamie went to the baseball game, where they ate terrible food and got way too hot. Fortunately the Emeralds scored multiple home runs in the first inning, so they felt it was okay to head home. Emma and I instead went to the library, spending a long while playing with the library stuffed animals.

After the kids and gone to sleep and Jamie had finished the new Harry Potter book, we rendezvoused out on the patio porch to look at the stars and have a nice little chat. Life is good.

Happy birthday to Jordan! I had a little v...

August 15, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Happy birthday to Jordan!

I had a little vacation in my own home this weekend, as my friend Kelly visited from Boston, dragging me to a series of farms and museums that I would never go to without feeling like a tourist. But it was great for me to enjoy the Williamstown Theatre Festival celebrities with new eyes, see all those famous paintings crammed in the Clark, and take a long drive to Pittsfield, just for corn and a few farm tomatoes. I think it was nice for her to leave the bustle of the city for a place where one can spend all day reading a novel without feeling like life is passing one by. She finished The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, and I finished The Little Women- a rich little gem that mirrors Little Women by L.M.A. enough to make it thrilling, but unique enough to make you happily outraged when something new happens.

It has finally cooled down. My boss is finally back from his vacation, and I feel myself constantly singing his praises and amazed that I get to have him for another year. That I were as much a pleasure to work with as he... I hope I'll learn to have patience and a longer view once I really dedicate myself to the long haul. But I had a great meeting with state rep Dan Bosely, who is so supportive of my work that I feel doubly impatient to get the college on board. Sigh.

Sam has discovered a new game

August 14, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam has discovered a new game. Yesterday he drew a simple maze and I made car engine noises as I moved my finger through it. Soon enough the mazes became elaborate, with jumps, flames, and ice patches, and I was to drive my finger-based "car" through it successfully. He enjoys it immensely, though it does admittedly produce a ton of paper with his various scribbles.

Today he took another approach, turning it into a video game based around a warrior vampire, fighting for good. The puzzles and fights became more complex and he spent nearly an hour just drawing the guy's armor.

Strangely enough, he walked outside, blood dripping from his face, and announced that he'd gotten a nose bleed. We're used to them by now, so we promptly lept into clean-up action. I did have to point out the irony about the blood and the vampire thing. He only thought it was mildly amusing.

I have become tech support to my entire family

August 14, 2005 by Adam in Adam

I have become tech support to my entire family. I spent a frustrating hour or two trying to get
jenny's old computer functioning properly. Eventually I gave up and ordered a new one through Dell. The prices are so darn cheap that it's not worth my time fiddling around with things.

I also spent some time getting Jamie's dad's computer properly configured. We should be sending it to him the next time he visits. It's his first, so I tried to make things pretty simple.

My mom's laptop arrives next week as well. It's the lightest one in a reasonable price right. Hopefully she likes it.

The day is winding down, though it's admitted...

August 14, 2005 by Adam in Family

The day is winding down, though it's admittedly been a bit exciting. I spent two hours painting this morning. There were some doors in our bedroom that went untouched when we painted the walls purple. Of course, now they don't match the doors at all, so they're turning white. I might be able to manage a second coat tomorrow and finish everything up.

The kids and I went to Humble Bagel for lunch, where Sam praised the tastiness of their bagels. Emma got sugared up with a cookie and juice.

After returning home, there was a frustrating couple hours where Jamie tried to put Emma to bed. Eventually she crashed for fifteen minutes on top of me while watching a movie. I snoozed off myself, though it was hard with her jumping up and down on my stomach. Eventually we retired to the wading pool outside.

As the afternoon wound down, I took the kids to the park to play in the fountains and wander around. It was beautiful and fairly quiet. Emma chased and was chased by a butterfly. We returned home for dinner, some gardening time, and finally to bed.

While I absolutely hate all forwards, this on...

August 12, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

While I absolutely hate all forwards, this one actually seemed useful:

On August 15th, cell phone numbers are being released to telemarketing companies and you'll probably start to receive sales calls from them. YOU WILL BE CHARGED FOR THESE CALLS! To block telemarketers from calling you, you have to call 888.382.1222 directly from your cell phone. It is the National DO NOT CALL list.

It only takes a minute and your number is blocked for five 5 years. Please pass on this public service message to your friends.

You may also register online at

Adam's comments:
While there's some truth in this (the phone number listed above really is for the do not call list), there's no plan for anyone to start doing what's suggested in the e-mail. For more details, you can visit this site. It probably won't hurt to put your phone number in the do not call list, but I don't think it's that big a deal.

Poor Betsy! I'm going back for my high school...

August 12, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Poor Betsy! I'm going back for my high school class reunion,
leaving on the 18th and returning on the 23rd. I called her to ask if I could stay at the house in Normalville. She said yes, but that I would have to unscrew the boards from the front door. Apparently, someone vandalized the house, breaking all the windows, all the mirrors in the house, and
generally wrecking havoc, and Bets had to board the place up. While I'm in Pa., I'm going to make a quick trip to the Farm, in Ohio, which I haven't ever been to, to visit her and the boys, and pick up Grandpa Jones' muzzle loader mom gave to Adam long ago. I'm going to check with Delta first.

It's another Mocha Friday

August 12, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's another Mocha Friday. I'm happily caffinated and going through the messages of the day.

I had the kids last night as Jamie went over to visit with her brother in his new house. Evidently they sat around watching The Mummy with Jamie saying how stupid it was the whole time. The kids and I played non-stop. Impromptu capes were made, race tracks were drawn, and I somehow managed to make dinner in the middle of it all. They were loads of fun and we continued playing even after Jamie returned.

Both Sam and Emma had a hard time going to sleep, though. Emma started crying and called out for me, so I took her downstairs for cereal and a show. Later on, Sam woke up after having a bad dream so we went down to the kitchen to talk and have some warm milk. Finally I escaped to the guest bed and was blissfully undisturbed for the rest of the night.

Our weekend plans include Jordan's birthday party on Sunday and continuing some painting around the house. I've turned into the tech support for our family again. I've got Ray's new computer to configure, I bought my mom a laptop yesterday, and Jenny's dropping her computer off today for me to repair. I suppose if I were a neurosurgeon they'd have me poking around in their brains or something.

We've been having dinner on the patio for the...

August 11, 2005 by Adam in Adam

We've been having dinner on the patio for the last couple nights, which has been really nice. Finally the house is painted and the garden has grown in. The kids can do their typical finishing early thing and run around in the back yard, leaving Jamie and I to finish a leisurely dinner.

I watched D.E.B.S. last weekend, which was a fun and silly movie. Right now I'm hooked on one of the songs from the movie. It has that teen angst feel that I pretty much missed while rolling twenty sided dice and writing text adventures during high school. Ah, well, at least I had my wild college years.

Well, I survived the play, which ran to such ...

August 10, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Well, I survived the play, which ran to such sucess that we added an extra show! I am now rushing to catch up with homework, and one of my classes that finishes up on Friday.
I've also been busy raising hell over some faculty and class changes that the administration seems determined to push through without anyone noticing. Nothing like using any clout I can think of to invoke revolutions. Sigh...so much for floating through school quietly.
Isa had fun in Eugene last week with Hanni, and then during the three days Mom was up here in Portland. She only has a few weeks left before changing to Robbie's school, and although she will miss her current teacher, I know she's looking forward to the new adventure.
We'll be heading down Sat. morning for a weekend of birthdays - both Jordan's and Tony Rosta's! How on earth did Jordan get to be 4 so quickly?! It's getting harder for Isa to treat him like her "little" cousin when he now towers over her!

The kids and I have been playing hard these l...

August 10, 2005 by Adam in Family

The kids and I have been playing hard these last few days. It seems like most evenings we're either in the basement running around or in the backyard fleeing from Emma with the hose. The other day the kids dressed up as super heroes and wanted to be flown about. I suppose it's good exercise for everyone involved.

Work has been busy but strangely rewarding. Occasionally I'll come up with an elegant solution to a complex problem that impresses even me. I've been drinking a fair bit of tea throughout the day, so perhaps it's really just the caffiene doing the thinking.

It's strange to think that Summer is coming to an end. The kids start swimming lessons next week and after that it's time to return to school.

Fun days -Friday morning Adam, Jenny, Hanni, ...

August 08, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Fun days -Friday morning Adam, Jenny, Hanni, all five grandchildren and I went to see "Alexander's Horrible,
Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day" at the University's Ugly Duckling theater (the kids' outdoor summer theater)Very fun for everyone, except Emma, who kept expecting a dragon, apparently a fearsome character in a play she had seen in the past, to appear, and chose to watch from the safety
of the hedge. On Friday night I picked up Chinese food for Anna, Bob and me, but unfortunately, I couldn't visualize what I was ordering on the phone, and wound up getting almost $60 worth of take out, a huge shopping bag full, to the awe and amazement of Bob and Anna, both of whom obviously thought I knew what I was doing. On Saturday, Bob and I ran errands -he picked up clothing for Aric to go to school, and some fruit at Costco, where I got the car gassed. Finally we picked up Isa at Hanni's and headed to see Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. All went well, except that during a lull in the sound track, Isa announced that she was going to the bathroom, that she didn't want me to come with her, and if she saw a stranger she would hit him. I don't know what I'm going to do when she wants to drive next year.
Love to the gang, momo

I'm spent

August 08, 2005 by Adam in Family

I'm spent.

Today was a day of discharging various obligations, though not entirely unpleasant. Darryl and I took the kids to the park in the morning while Jamie went to the store. It was funny watching Darryl with the kids as he normally is somewhat reserved. I caught him cheating in a race with Sam, as he pulled him back by the seat of his pants.

Around ten Darryl and I went over to help Dave move. It was hard work, with seemingly endless pieces of solid oak furniture. Fortunately moving a guy's stuff is pretty easy, as he just wants the number of pieces stuffed into it to roughly equal the number of pieces coming out at the end. Bumps and scratches weren't really an issue.

I left after the main load, walking back home from his new house. I watched the kids while Jamie went off to a play with Sharon. We played in the basement until she returned several hours later. Then it was off to the park to watch the storytelling pre-show for Shakespeare in the Park, though most of the time was spent on the play structure. We returned home and I dropped everyone off then ran out to Seraph and Robbie's house to take pictures for potential renters.

Now, at the end of the day, I find it hard to summon the energy to do much of anything. I'll likely stagger up to bed and collapse relatively soon.

I wore myself out playing with the kids yesterday

August 07, 2005 by Adam in Family

I wore myself out playing with the kids yesterday. We left the house after breakfast, our intentions to go to the park and play around. We never got there, and instead started preparing one of the garden beds in the front yard. We weeded, hauled away yard debris, and broke up soil. The kids really got into helping, even Emma.

We drove over to Gray's to pick up soil and some lavender, with the kids having a great time playing in their fountains. Eventually we made it back home where we spread the soil, put in the plants, and watered away.

Emma was having a hard time napping, so Jamie took off to clean Dave's new place and the kids and I watched Kiki's Delivery Service. Emma fell asleep on my chest and I snoozed as well, waking when Jamie returned.

In the afternoon, Jamie's family arrived for dinner. I spent a couple hours playing hard with the kids in the basement, running about listening to AC/DC and the like. I've been staying up until 11 pm or so, but last night I collapsed right after 9.

Today it looks like I'll be helping Dave move and watching the kids in the afternoon while Jamie goes to a play with a friend. Hopefully I can pace myself.

Sue, it could be worse

August 05, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Sue, it could be worse. I have 6 dogs, a cat and a horse, they will probably all out live me at this rate. Will I need a King Tut size tomb for the burial????

Sweet, sweet Mocha Friday

August 05, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sweet, sweet Mocha Friday. I'm still at home, so I'll have to wait for awhile longer.

The kids and I had a bunch of fun last night. It's been really hot so we played outside with the hose. True, I started by watering plants, but soon enough Emma was wanting to help and things went downhill from there. I even made a little movie about it.

I have the kids today for awhile while Jamie signs papers to sell Brant's house (he gave her power of attorney, the fool). There's a play on campus that looks fun, so I might to take them there.

I'm very much looking forward to the weekend, though it's looking busy already.

Wow, everyone read Anna's blog about building...

August 04, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Wow, everyone read Anna's blog about building the school in
Uganda. I can't help but be really proud of Anna - she sounds like such a thoughtful young woman. Sadie, the check is in the mail, and do they need more? How about, if I actually close up shop at the end of 2K5, sending left over paper, paper clips, etc.? Otherwise, I will still have these damn office supplies when I die, and you will have to bury them with me, like grave goods. Love from the elderly!

Thank you Adam for posting the pictures! Wel...

August 04, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Thank you Adam for posting the pictures!
Well, tonight is the opening of the production I've been slaving away on! Everything is pretty much in order, except for my school work, which has suffered this week due to the late nights at the theater. I had forgotten how addictive all of this can be! Robbie and Isa have been saints as I have barely been home to sleep before slogging off for more punishment. I'm also taking a five week intensive sewing course which finishes up next Friday. After that, not only will the play be done, but I'll be back to four classes for the remainder of the summer. Ahhh... it almost sounds relaxing!

Robbie continues to wow us all with his teaching skills, actually getting a raise, even though he's only classified as a temp. employee! Only a few more weeks of summer camps before starting up his fall classes!

Along with Sadie and Emma, I too could use a beer right about now. The weather up here is getting unbearable! O- and Sadie, tell Anna she should absolutely keep the female brick layer. Besides, who needs another over paid engineer ;)

Oh, Adam, you should cut Emma some slack

August 04, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Oh, Adam, you should cut Emma some slack. Sometimes I NEED a beer too. It is miserably hot and humid here, but I get to go to Amherst (near Northampton) to have dinner with a friend. She just started her VISTA job at UMass Amherst. Ah, nothing like driving an hour and a half for a burrito. Tonight is an Irish session (jam) at a Noho bar called The Basement, which I might go to, for Anna's sake. She used to drive down just to play on Thursday nights.

I got a really nasty splinter last night when...

August 04, 2005 by Adam in Adam

I got a really nasty splinter last night when I went outside to dump a wheelbarrow full of yard debris. I have no idea how I got it, but it was quite painful. It took me nearly an hour to get it out, with Sam watching intently. The hardest part was that it was on the back of my calf and I had to go into contortions just to reach the spot. It finally came out and feels much better now.

I suppose the moral of the story is to fear the outdoors.

For everyone who wants to see cute pictures o...

August 03, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

For everyone who wants to see cute pictures of Isa in the fashion show, go to jasminephotography.com (there are 3 photos of her towards the end of the show).

Adam's comment: You can find the pictures here, here, and here.

I had the kids at work yesterday and we went ...

August 03, 2005 by Adam in Emma

I had the kids at work yesterday and we went over to campus for our usual exploration and bagel eating. We passed by Renee's Landing and she said "I want to go in there." "You want a beer?" I asked.

She then put on her whiny face and said, "I want a beer!" After I informed her that wasn't possible, she turned it up a notch. "I NEED a beer!"

Fortunately these temper tantrums are pretty amusing so we merely laugh at her. I suspect she'll learn soon enough to try a different approach.

Our house is yellow

August 03, 2005 by Adam in Family

Our house is yellow. The last of the painting finished yesterday and everything is bright and cheery. Of course, now it means that Jamie's all excited to start work on remodeling the main floor bathroom. When will the madness stop?

We bid farewell to Josh yesterday. He's heading up to Portland today and then off to Tennesee after that. Hopefully we'll see him around Christmas time, but if not then, he should be back next Summer. The kids both adore him, and I'll certainly miss him too.

Dave is moving into his new place, just a few blocks away. It'll be nice to have him so close, though we promised not to hand him the kids whenever they got unruly.

Life is full and fun, and the best thing is t...

August 01, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Life is full and fun, and the best thing is that my case load has dwindled to 24 clients, thanks to my tough staff,
who are so much better at saying no. I'm down to a half time secretary, Stephanie, but Bob's daughter, Anna, has been coming in to do some office closing data entry work, and Reta tries to help out. About half my domestic relations cases are Legal Aid pro bono cases, and have been pretty time consuming.
Bob and I went to Steve's service on Saturday afternoon; both he and Ron gave brief but very nice eulogies. After the three of us had dinner with the family, we went to Bob's and the guys played their guitars and told stories until 2.
Sunday evening Bob and I went to Jo Federico's to hear Mark Allen, Adam and Jamie's old favorite.

August already

August 01, 2005 by Adam in Family

August already. How time flies.

Sunday was a very good day. Jamie was all ready to take the kids out, leaving me to have some time to do my own thing. I had the wheelbarrow and shovel ready to dig out a flower bed, when I realized I'd much rather spend time with my family.

We went to a park far away in the middle of this new housing development. It was really cool, packed with all sorts of modern park technology and design. My favorite was a high water spigot that poured water into various troughs that could be played in or simply emptied onto the sand below. We also took along a frisbee to play with Jamie and the kids. Even Emma gives it her best shot, spinning her entire body to propel it six feet, upside down.

I had the kids for the afternoon while Jamie went to have tea with her English friend Gillian and then later hung out at Angie's. The kids were both in good moods. Sam played with his new Gameboy game (and a new time limit was introduced). Emma and I watched My Neighbor Totoro, both of us eventually falling asleep. We spent lots of play time in the basement, played with water balloons, looked at pond water under a microscope, made pizza, and generally had a very good day.

If you're interested in hearing more about An...

August 01, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

If you're interested in hearing more about Anna's journey, she's actually blogging for Education for Development at http://annaefd.blog.com/. This is a photo of the road to Namirama.

Upstairs, the Jewish chaplain and cantor is singing an open-mouthed, deep, minor prayer that carries through the house. It sounds like the Orthodox prayers sung behind the doors before communion.

Saturday has come and gone

July 31, 2005 by Adam in Family

Saturday has come and gone. Sam's running around without his two front teeth now, adapting fairly well to the gap. He even ate corn last night.

I took Emma out to the library, where she had a great time. She has this uncanny ability to charm everyone around her. A total stranger ended up giving her a pair of sunglasses simply because she looked cute.

We had the neighbor kids over briefly, which Sam thought was great. Emma managed to give Sam a nasty poke under the eye with a toy. Needless to say, there was a long talk afterwards. Jamie and I managed to finish watching Ocean's Twelve by staying up far too late after the kids went to bed.

It looks like the loose tooth saga is over, f...

July 30, 2005 by Adam in Sam

It looks like the loose tooth saga is over, for now at least. Sam's second tooth has been dangling by a thread for a couple weeks now. Last night Jamie spent an hour with Sam as he fiddled with his tooth. Finally he just grabbed the thing and yanked. Now he's free of his tiny front teeth and the new ones are coming in, looking much bigger.

He also finished up with Wizard camp yesterday, playing a Quidditch match and getting his diploma. He very much liked the entire experience.

In this picture, you can see the lightning bolt tattoo on his forehead from the class, along with ice cream on his chin from our morning's trip to Lonepine Farms.

Mocha Friday

July 29, 2005 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. I'm suitably caffeinated and ready to go. It's been incredibly hot this last week, and every night seems to be a complex arrangement of fans, open windows, and air conditioners. Afternoons are spent outside in the pool or in the basement. Fortunately it seems to be cooling down.

Sam lost his tooth yesterday, knocking it out while playing at camp. Since he couldn't find it, we wrote him a letter saying "Dear Sam, I spent an hour looking for your tooth in the grass. Next time just leave it under your pillow. - The Tooth Fairy." He sounds pretty strange and is very sensitive to having his other loose tooth touched. Hopefully that second one will come out and he'll look weird but otherwise act fairly normal.

The weekend is strangely empty. We have various house projects to do, but otherwise we might actually get some time to relax. I'm sure Jamie will want me to take the kids for long stretches of time, giving her a well deserved break.

Sam's tooth finally came out

July 28, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam's tooth finally came out. Unfortunately it wasn't the loosest one. He was playing in the hose at camp today when he ran into the back of another kid. One of his front teeth popped out and was lost in the grass. Evidently it was fairly bloody, though it didn't hurt at all.

Now he's talking very strangely, which makes it easy to make fun of him. He doesn't want to touch his empty spot with his tongue or lips, so he's making a funny face all the time. Hopefully he'll get used to it in a day or two. I'd also bet that other tooth was out by the weekend.

Work is busy, busy, busy

July 28, 2005 by Adam in Adam

Work is busy, busy, busy. I've decided that my latest approach is to simply ignore work in hopes that it will be forgotten by the requestor. I worked through lunch so I'm feeling a bit stiff now that I've reached the end of the day.

I had Emma this morning, who was wonderful. I was carrying her to our normal bagel visit when she spontaneously hugged and kissed me. Very sweet.

Clearly, no guilt or pressure

July 28, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Clearly, no guilt or pressure...

Seraph might busy with work and school, but t...

July 27, 2005 by Robbie in Cortez

Seraph might busy with work and school, but that doesn't mean I'm not having any fun. Yesterday, Isabell went to a friends house. A very well to do family who live in Southwest Portland. I went to pick up Isabell at five, and end up staying, drinking champagne, eating fancy cheeses, and enjoying the high life. Someday, we'll enjoy life like that.

HOLY MOLD!! HOUSE FOR SALE! We just discoverd...

July 27, 2005 by Yayoe in Yayoe

HOLY MOLD!! HOUSE FOR SALE! We just discoverd MOLD in our attic. A general contractor came by to check it out for me and found it. There is no ventilation to speak of and he said it was 140 degrees up there. When he crawled out of the attic he was driping wet. This Friday a mold inspector/remediator is coming to tell us how bad it actually is. A friend, who is a physician said, "sell the house right now!" He said a physician friend and his family have multiple health problems from mold and the house was relatively new. SO if you know anything about the subject or friends who have had to deal with it please call or write. This explains why my allergies have never resolved or as my allergist said to me, "you gotten worse since I've know you." I've been on shots 5+ years and so many drugs that I feel like a junkie with no relief. Meanwhile, I've put the house up for sale but don't tell Lohring. Look on e-Bay for the listing under MOULDY HOUSE FOR QUICK SALE. MUST BUY SIGHT UNSEEN. NO QUESTIONS ASKED EXCEPT FOR THE PRICE!

I think I've found the edge of the earth (yes...

July 27, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

I think I've found the edge of the earth (yes, it is flat), and realized it's a very far drop! Well, ok, life is not yet that bad, but it does seem like I'm hanging on by my toe nails on some days.
Summer classes are in full swing, and I'm already feeling behind. But, as my friend Binny says that just puts me on par with everyone else. Darn those high standards!
The play I've been working on runs next Thur, Fri and Sat, and I'm about 1/3 of the way done with the costumes. This means that I have bid farewell to my family for awhile.
It was great seeing everyone last weekend. Maybe I'll make it down again before the summer ends!

I think Jamie and I have come down with a tou...

July 27, 2005 by Adam in Family

I think Jamie and I have come down with a touch of something, as we're both feeling a bit under the weather. Of course, all those winters of being constantly ill have toughened us up and these minor ills are shrugged off easily.

Sam's great tooth saga continues. I'd expect that today is the day his first baby tooth pops out. I keep suggesting that we collect them in a dusty bottle, starting a collection of Voodoo paraphernalia.

Emma is fun as always. I had her at work yesterday, taking her out to a bagel store where she charmed all the patrons. She's so chatty that it's hard to get a word in edgewise.

Sam's first tooth is about to pop out

July 27, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam's first tooth is about to pop out. He's been wiggling it back and forth endlessly for the last couple days. Yesterday at Wizard's Camp he spent his swimming time with a friend who was giving pointers as to how to get it out.

Speaking of Wizard's Camp, Sam loves it. It's got a Harry Potter theme and the main teacher is a magician and actor in his own right. He's been doing tricks and getting everyone playing various Wizard themed games. Yesterday he got his broom and they were running it through an obstacle course. On Friday is a Quidditch match.

More news from Anna: she is very well, enjoyi...

July 25, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

More news from Anna: she is very well, enjoying the rural life with lots of family and friends in Bukhaweka and Namirama, and says this about the school project's status:

"Workers have dug the foundation for the school (even though I have not yet paid them), and the transport man tried to bring "hard core" (big rocks) to the site on Saturday. Everyone is very eager! Unfortunately, one of the bridges that he must cross to get to Namirama is not yet finished, so workers are hurrying today to complete it. Apparently, someone contacted the government to say that we needed the bridge fixed so that we could get building materials to Namirama, so this is why they are working on it now. Otherwise it would have remained broken, because it was not in the budget for this year. Although communication is very slow here (not many telephones, very few cars), people seem to manage. The concept of messengers is still very real here."

Wonderful news, in my humble opinion.

Williamstown is beautiful, and I'm furiously redecorating the entire house before Anna comes home and puts here two cents in. I'm aiming for a country pirate look.

Emma is a joy to be around

July 25, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Emma is a joy to be around. She's polite, funny, and extremely smart. She'll hurt herself and I'll give her a kiss and she'll say "Oh, thank you." Admittedly, she can be a handful as well. She's very curious about the world and how it works. Making pizza together is more of a messy art project than a cuisine-related activity.

This particular photo is showing off her trademark grin, a funny little thing that no one taught her to do. She does it when she's being a little coy or shy about something. It might vanish as she gets older, something I'd dearly miss.

Yet another Sam tooth update

July 25, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Yet another Sam tooth update. The last posting's picture was taken a week or so ago (despite the posting date). This one was really taken yesterday, so you can start seeing the difference. If you look closely at the second front tooth, you can see a new one starting to poke out there too. As a side note, someone let me know that the previous picture of Sam's tooth grossed them out. Sam was duly impressed.

Sam starts wizard camp today. It's got Harry Potter themes and hopefully will be lots of fun for him. It'll be strange for Jamie to just have the one kid for most of the week. A preview for Fall when Sam goes to first grade, I suppose.

The weekend has come to an end

July 25, 2005 by Adam in Family

The weekend has come to an end. It was pretty good, as weekends go, full of family and kids.

Saturday morning the kids and I went shopping while Jamie visited with friends, heading to the mall and Toys-R-Us to buy frivolous things for people. I'm not sure it was related, but Sam was in an exceptionally sweet and helpful mood that morning. He ended up picking up a new Lego set and Emma got some squirt guns which were put to good use later that day. Sam immediately assembled his new toy during lunch and we played with it during Emma's nap.

The afternoon was spent hanging out at my mom's house, the whole family assembled for food and conversation. Sam and Isabel played the whole time while I followed Emma from place to place. My mom and I shared blowing out a birthday cake and good time was had by all.

Yesterday seemed to be more of the same, though with Jamie's family. Her dad and Josh came by early in the day. We went to Costco where I ended up getting a cart full of cereal. Sam and Josh played togegether for the rest of the day. Later that night Dave and Kirsten came by for spaghetti and watermelon. Emma loved the watermelon.

I wanted to do a quick post of Sam's teeth, s...

July 22, 2005 by Adam in Sam

I wanted to do a quick post of Sam's teeth, slowly popping in. It's been strangely fun to watch his two front teeth gradually sticking forward while the new ones pop in. I suspect it'll still be a few more weeks until anything comes out as they're not particularly loose.

Sam also got a postcard via "owl post" yesterday (that's what the stamp said anyway). He's going to Wizardry camp next week and they gave him a list of things to prepare for. One of them was to pick a wizard name, though I'm not sure we were particularly helpful. "Samuel Picklebottom" didn't get quite the reaction I'd have hoped for.

It's another Mocha Friday this morning

July 22, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's another Mocha Friday this morning. It feels like cheating since I was only back at work yesterday, but I'll take any excuse I can get.

I watched The Ring last night, a Japanese horror film that freaked me out. I rarely watch scary movies, but I felt a strange compulsion to get it along with the others I checked out at the library. After freaking myself out, it took awhile to get to sleep. In the middle of the night we had a huge thunderstorm which woke both me and Emma up. After Jamie put Emma back to sleep, I made her pat my head and whisper reassurances to me too.

The only big exciting plans for this weekend is Saturday for my mom's birthday. We were talking at dinner about Seraph coming down and immediately Emma started talking about playing with Isabel.

The house continues to be painted. Hopefully everything will be finished by next week. It's been amazing watching the trim going down as the white is so much whiter than it was before.

I just talked to Anna for about five minutes,...

July 21, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

I just talked to Anna for about five minutes, and she's alive and well in Mbale, Uganda! She'll be moving to Bukhaweka soon, so will be without electricity while she works with the even smaller and more rural Namirama village community. I suppose our plan to send Williams computers to the new school isn't quite as practical as I had thought. Life is dreadfully dull and hot without her, but I'm trying to do exciting stuff at work to keep me (and the administration) on my (and its) toes. As far as I'm concerned, if I don't get one tentative East Coast warning that I may be pushing the private school town gown barrier a little too far, I haven't done my job.

My friends Alexis and Kelly are probably coming west from Boston for a little vacation and art extravaganza in early August. Hooray!

It was a nice day back before the onslaught o...

July 21, 2005 by Adam in Family

It was a nice day back before the onslaught of work this morning. The kids and I went hiking in the morning at Hendrick's park, stopping by Humble Bagel on the way back home. After lunch the three of us played with playdough for literally an hour and a half, which was completely amazing. The day was wrapped up with a water fight in the back yard.

I'm taking a short break from wading through ...

July 21, 2005 by Adam in Adam

I'm taking a short break from wading through piles of e-mails now that I'm back at work. It's amazing how much has happened since I left. One of my coworkers had her baby, along with some stressful complications. Since their family is web savvy, they've started a blog about it. Best wishes to her.

26 e-mail messages to go, along with three voice mail messages to deal with. Sigh.

May you live a hundred years, may you drink a...

July 20, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

May you live a hundred years, may you drink a hundred beers, don't get plastered you baaaad boy, happy birthday to you!

We're back from the beach, safe and sound

July 19, 2005 by Adam in Family

We're back from the beach, safe and sound. It's my 36th birthday today as well. I don't think anyone remembered until lunchtime at the Newport aquarium. Quick update: we had a great time, our house has been painted yellow, and there's lots to still unpack (but at least my computer is plugged in). More later . . .

It was a good few days at the beach. Dave, Kirsten, and Josh kept us company and helped entertain the kids. We made sand castles, went swimming at the nearby pool, and generally had a relaxing time.

We returned home to a cheery yellow home. The painters aren't quite finished, but they're well on their way. The kids ran about, trying to keep cool on this very hot day. My favorite part of the day was picking up fresh blueberries at the store and making smoothies. Very tasty.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ADAM!!!! (How old are you anyw...

July 19, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ADAM!!!! (How old are you anyway?)

Is there anything wrong with tortillias and p...

July 19, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Is there anything wrong with tortillias and peanut butter? Personal favorite among students as well!

I'm sorry to hear about your friend, mom

July 19, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

I'm sorry to hear about your friend, mom. He sounded like an important part of your life, even if he was only a short-term gift to you.

Anna is safe and sound in Kampala, overstuffed by the glorious international airplane staff and her kind and attentive host, Michael. I will keep you updated on her progress with the school. I can't believe the amount on her plate with this project- who is expected to build a school in five weeks? Of course, there is no real expectation for the school to be finished when she leaves, but she is expected to establish the process, far more complex than the actual building of the school, in my mind. Such an exciting, difficult, and worthwhile project.

I finished the new Harry Potter yesterday, the only nice thing about living as a bachelor again. My ability to fend for myself in the kitchen has, of course, fallen short of Anna's recent creative cooking endevors. I haven't had popcorn for dinner yet, but I don't think it will be too long until I'm chewing on dry tortillas covered in peanut butter.

A short Sunday night entry

July 18, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

A short Sunday night entry...I stayed overnight on Thursday at the nursing home; the staff was wonderful, and helped me push the extra bed in the room over so I could reach Steve's
hand.His mom Pat is having hip surgery in three weeks, so she couldn't really stay, even though she would have liked to. By Friday morning his breathing was very labored, and he died shortly after I got up.
Bob took off work at noon, and he and Ron, Bob's cousin,(and the third musketeer of the group), took Pat to the funeral home. The boys apparently complained loudly and at some length about the shortcomings of the funeral home (to the funeral home lady, who I had dealt with earlier, and who did in fact seemed quite put out - nay, more like Pissed Off - that so many people had the nerve to die at the same time).However, Pat got through the business part in fine shape, and I think the guys performed their support group roles with great panache.
And joy of joys, Seraph and Robbie came down for the weekend - Seraph to make curtains for me, and Robbie to take his former Sunday School class to Barnes and Nobel for the Potter party, then back to the church to camp out. They were the perfect support group for me. So love to all, and happy almost birthday to Adam.

We're heading off to the coast in a bit

July 16, 2005 by Adam in Family

We're heading off to the coast in a bit. Hopefully we'll return home to a nicely painted house as the painters are supposed to finish it up this weekend.

It was fairly quiet yesterday. We went swimming and generally hung around the house preparing for our trip. I'm not quite packed yet, but hopefully will be soon.

I'm sitting in a fancy hotel in St

July 16, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

I'm sitting in a fancy hotel in St. Ignace, Michigan on the tailend of our vacation. It has been an eventful trip. Last Friday as I was heading to the office at the end of the day a young man backed into my truck. When I got out it wasn't really bad but when the 20 something said "Oh. It's O.K. even though it was your fault for failure to control your vehicle." I couldn't deal with it so I called the cops and they gave him a ticket and got his insurance info. That set the tone for the rest of the trip, Wills braces broke, Patrick lost his glasses and the truck broke down in the middle of nowhere. We spent several days in Paradise, Michigan waiting for parts but everyone was wonderful and we had a beautiful campsite. Paradise is on Whitefish Bay where the Edmund Fitzgerald was headed for when she sank. Beautiful place. Headed back to civilazation tmmorrow. Love to all

I'm sitting in a fancy hotel in St

July 16, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

I'm sitting in a fancy hotel in St. Ignace, Michigan on the tailend of our vacation. It has been an eventful trip. Last Friday as I was heading to the office at the end of the day a young man backed into my truck. When I got out it wasn't really bad but when the 20 something said "Oh. It's O.K. even though it was your fault for failure to control your vehicle." I couldn't deal with it so I called the cops and they gave him a ticket and got his insurance info. That set the tone for the rest of the trip, Wills braces broke, Patrick lost his glasses and the truck broke down in the middle of nowhere. We spent several days in Paradise, Michigan waiting for parts but everyone was wonderful and we had a beautiful campsite. Paradise is on Whitefish Bay where the Edmund Fitzgerald was headed for when she sank. Beautiful place. Headed back to civilazation tmmorrow. Love to all

This last two weeks have been strange, moving...

July 14, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

This last two weeks have been strange, moving from the land of the living to the nursing home, a shadow land of the dying and those people who have ceased to exist because they have no memory. It also seems beyond the Oregon Statutes - when Steve was first there, he wanted marijuana for pain, rather than medicine. We asked the staff, who
told us to close his door and open the windows. It surely seems to me that docs should be able to prescribe marijuana in end-of-life situations, rather than having us elderly
leading a life of crime. Steve is in the stage when all I do
is hold his hand - although I sang Blanket Bay to him this morning,with its amazingly effective calming effect. Glad everyone is well, and prayers for any readers who aren't.

It's Mocha Thursday for me today, since I'll ...

July 14, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Thursday for me today, since I'll be out tomorrow. It's looking like we're not actually going to head to the coast Friday as we need to open the garage for the painters Saturday morning. Of course, that means I can pick up a new hard drive that should be arriving that day, along with watching the new season of Battlestar Galactica that's on late Friday night.

It's been a quiet week - no camps, t-ball, or other activities. Mostly the kids and I just play together each night. I think Jamie's going to bring the kids in a bit so we can go to a kid's play that's being shown on campus. Fun, fun.

I've had a lull in games as of late

July 12, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

I've had a lull in games as of late. Mostly I work away on my game campaign and fiddle with the occasional older game. Sam's been replaying Half-Life 2, which he enjoys greatly. Josh was also excited to play it for awhile.

The next batch of games I'm looking forward to are F.E.A.R., a survival-horror game with lots of guns and a creepy little girl, as well as Oblivion, which is a fantasy game. Oblivion will likely cause me to get a new computer as there's lots of new graphical goodies and more. They've incorporated the Havok physics engine as well, which is something I enjoy immensely. For some reason, it's extremely entertaining to push boulders down upon your enemy or shoot an arrow into a hanging bucket and watch it tilt realistically.

Last night Emma was watching videos of Sam as...

July 12, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Last night Emma was watching videos of Sam as a kid as she'll often do. She saw the one where he was riding his bike around and she decided that was exactly what she wanted to do. We put on her knee pads, elbow pads, and helmet, then rode down to the park.

Once there, she lost all interest in actual riding, instead wanting to show off her bike and equipment to the oblivious teenagers playing in the sand. After awhile we returned home, with me pushing her back up the hill as she enjoyed the ride.

Sam's new teeth are slowly coming in

July 12, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam's new teeth are slowly coming in. Last night we were giving him a bath and I got to see one of his new teeth poking in behind his old ones. It looked quite odd.

This has been a summer of camps for Sam. He had his swimming lessons and his cartoon camp. He really liked both of them and probably kept him from being completely bored. Pretty soon he'll have Wizard's camp and then likely another round of swimming lessons. T-ball is over as well, so we're in a lull between the various activities.

He's also turning into an actual reader. Most of the early reader books are overly cute or silly, but I managed to find some ones that were actually funny. I left them by his bed after I got them at the library. The next day he reported that he read them both, all by himself.

Another weekend draws to a close

July 11, 2005 by Adam in Family

Another weekend draws to a close. Saturday was wonderful, a series of surprises one after the other. Jamie arranged for her folks to come down, so they arrived right before Sam's last T-ball game and took them away until the end of the day. We headed out to the countryside, eventually coming to King Estate Winery. We tasted wine, admired the view, and headed back home. We picked out recipes, went to the farmer's market, and watched Life Aquatic. Soon enough, Jamie's friends started arriving bringing dinner goodies. Eventually the kids returned and things returned to normal.

We all had a big breakfast, though the kids were done in a couple minutes. Jamie put Jim to work hanging up a couple mirrors. After they headed up to Portland we had a fairly typical rest of the day. I took the kids to the playground. Jamie took Sam to see the Emeralds play baseball. Emma and I got groceries and played about the house.

I'm off to work tomorrow, counting the days until the grand beach trip next Friday.

The most bizarre thing happened last night

July 09, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

The most bizarre thing happened last night. It was dusk and there had been a storm brewing all afternoon. It's very common to get pop up thunderstorms here, normally late afternoon from the heat. It had been 88 degrees and very sticky so I battened down the hatches and was at home working on getting ready to take Patrick to camp. I was in the living room when I heard what I thought were big rain drops hitting the skylights in the kitchen. I went out to look and there was hail coming down as big as quarters. Of then the storm hit with hail and rain in sheets so heavy I couldn't see past the edge of the patio. The hail lasted about 15 minutes and when it was done I went out and it was piled someplaces 3-4 inches deep! The temperature had dropped significantly and places where the hail was in puddles and on the ground it lasted about 1/2 an hour. Everything was O.K. but it made me wonder.
The boys are with Mike this weekend and we leave for our annual trip to Michigan on Monday. Hope all are well and enjoying the summer! Love, Bets and the boys

Today is Jamie and I's tenth year anniversary

July 08, 2005 by Adam in Family

Today is Jamie and I's tenth year anniversary. It's her turn this year, so I'm really curious if she has anything exciting planned. Now that we have kids, it's pretty hard for us to drop everything and go someplace exotic. It may just be a quiet at-home anniversary.

The week has been fairly uneventful, other than the London bombings. I talked to my mom last night and it sounds like all our extended English relatives are okay.

Sam has one more T-ball game before the season is over. I'm not quite sure what we'll do with the boy after that as I don't think there's any sport activity until soccer begins in the fall. Sam also continues Cartoon Camp, with today being the big art show. I'm going to see if I can sneak out of work a little early so I can attend.

Goodmorning all! I called Mom this morning a...

July 07, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Goodmorning all! I called Mom this morning about contacting Sandie, Cousin Mary and the other UK family to see if any of them were affected by todays bombings. Please keep them in your thoughts.

Greetings this lovely July! Here's newz from ...

July 07, 2005 by Yayoe in Yayoe

Greetings this lovely July! Here's newz from the old folks home. Lohring is off to the wild blue yonder tomorrow (New Hampshire) for another 11 day NAMBA race. He's also planning to visit with Sadie in Massachusetts. Those little New England states are so close together that it's easy to just drive here and there and meet up with folks. Hard to believe I use to live in Cambridge, Mass. schlepping back and forth to graduate school and wondering if it was worth the effort to study study study and slave. Here it is 35 years later and the answer to the question is YES!

Lohring will be doing his first sealant clinic at LCC when he returns from New Hampsire on the 18th. He's excited about this public health approach to saving children's teeth.

I'm still plugging away at my ukulele and found 3 wonderful women in my neighborhood to play with during the month. I'm still doing my volunteer activities and enjoying the summer.

Dorothy will be returning to Eugene in September. She's going to Washington to help her sister Caroline, who is scheduled for cardiac surgery. I'll be in touch with you folks about dates for getting together.
S0 enough for now!

Hi, love to all, and you should know that Sad...

July 06, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Hi, love to all, and you should know that Sadie has been
"referenced". Remember when she worked on a book that one of
the professors(call her Pollywog, as I can't remember her name) at Smith was writing? Anyhow, the book was
published, and Sadie was named as one of the authors. An article on the same subject was published recently. It referred to "the work of Pollywog and Miller". Ah, what amazing people you all are.
On a sad note, Bob and I have been spending a lot of time at a nursing home, where his old budd Steve has been dying of brain cancer.

Sign Oxfam's ONE campaign petition

July 06, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Sign Oxfam's ONE campaign petition.

We believe that, in the best American tradition of helping others help themselves, now is the time to join with other countries in an historic pact for compassion and justice to help the poorest people of the world overcome AIDS and extreme poverty.

We recognize that a pact including such measures as fair trade, debt relief, fighting corruption and targeting an additional one percent of the US budget towards providing basic needs -- education, health, clean water, food, and care for orphans -- would transform the futures and hopes of an entire generation in the poorest countries.

We commit ourselves -- ONE person, ONE voice, ONE vote at a time -- to make a better, safer world for all.

The Fourth is over and I'm back to work again

July 05, 2005 by Adam in Family

The Fourth is over and I'm back to work again. I had Emma for an hour this morning as Jamie worked out. We wandered around work and then had our morning bagel. She was very cute and chatty with people who wandered by.

Sam went to his first day of comics camp. I'm dying to know how it's working out for him. Jamie reported that there were lots of nice kids, so hopefully he'll make some friends. He also gets to go swimming today as well, then Jamie will pick him up around four.

Monday was pleasant and laid back. We worked hard on finishing the upstairs. Sam managed to give himself a very mild shock changing out the outlets. His job was to test each first and then remove two screws, but he forgot to properly test one. He said it felt like the screw was vibrating a little. Fortunately we managed to turn off that breaker and switch it all out. As a bonus, a light switch that had done nothing before now works. All the purple paint is on the walls too. Very pretty.

Happy Independence Day! We got back from an ...

July 05, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Happy Independence Day! We got back from an overnight camping trip at Champoeg State Park, after which I took a long nap. We're now making a nice dinner to eat out in the sun. There has not been a decision about wheather or not to head out to watch fireworks tonight. Isa's not yet at that age where it is required, and the traffic up here tends to be considerable.
We hope everyone else is enjoying their time off!

Happy Fourth of July to all of you

July 04, 2005 by Adam in Family

Happy Fourth of July to all of you. It's been a fun-filled last couple days, a pleasant weekend made even better by the fact that I don't return to work until tomorrow.

On Saturday I took the kids to Amazon park in the morning where we played on the play structure and hiked around. Sam had an especially fun time leaping over Amazon creek and later returning back over a thin raised bridge. In the afternoon we went to Jerry's to get supplies. I spent most of the afternoon with a paintbrush or roller in my hand, working away at painting our bedroom purple.

I also stopped by a new game store that opened up and picked up a board game called Captain Clever. We played over lunch and I managed to barely win with Samuel right behind me.

Sunday was quite similar in some ways. I took the kids to Hendrick's park, Emma in a back pack. We rediscovered a secret trail that Sam and I took when he was four. He kept saying "Dad, you're a genius!" as evidently the discovery ranks up there with lost Mayan cities. We stopped by Humble Bagel on the way home for tasty treats.

Upon our return and after lunch, Jamie started in on painting while the kids and I broke out the slip-and-slide for some afternoon water action. We finally wound down with a tasty dinner and some after supper sparklers.

Mocha Friday, with a three day weekend ahead ...

July 01, 2005 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday, with a three day weekend ahead of me. I'm hoping it's fairly quiet. Jamie's picked up some paint for the bedroom, so I'll likely do a fair bit of painting. Sam already has his "alone with dad time" planned out. Emma's happy enough with whatever time she can get.

Last night we went down to Sam's T-ball game while Jamie went to Pat's to watch a movie. My mom showed up, as did our neighbors as Sam was playing against Edison. Sam also ran into his old preschool friend Jake, who Sam reported as having a different face and voice. It's strange how half the parents of Eugene look familiar to me now. My mom arrived as well and helped entertain Emma and cheer on Sam.

The weekend continues to sneak up on us

June 30, 2005 by Adam in Family

The weekend continues to sneak up on us. It's the kid's last day of swimming lessons. I think next week is cartoon camp for Sam. I think t-ball ends fairly soon as well.

Emma, Sam, and I walked down to cheese park last night where Sam played his t-ball game. Emma leads me all over the place at these things and last night was no exception. We found various little girls that Emma immediately started referring to as her friend. Unfortunately at this age everyone's attention span is pretty short. Sam was pretty tired after the game and I almost had to carry him back home.

The only other exciting news is that Dave and Josh are moving into a house that Victoria rents, just a few blocks away from us. We'll probably have to promise not to go over and bug him every day. Brant's still hoping to sell his current house to finance his great Bend real estate adventure. Ah, the joys of change.

Wednesday already

June 29, 2005 by Adam in Family

Wednesday already. Jamie was off at Sharon's house last night while I entertained the kids. Sam, Emma, and I somehow survived, playing outside, drawing, and taking baths. Jamie returned at bedtime with painted nails and dessert for the kids.

Alex continues to work away on the outside of the house in preparation for painting. Jamie's getting the paint for our bedroom tomorrow and we'll probably finish painting this weekend.

Did everyone know our Anna got a job with an ...

June 29, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Did everyone know our Anna got a job with an engineering firm about 35 minutes drive from Williamstown? She will have time to go to Uganda first. I'm going to send her a small check to use to help the local people in Uganda as she
sees the need.

June had so much good stuff in it! It was so ...

June 29, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

June had so much good stuff in it! It was so much fun to have Sadie and Anna, and to spend time with everyone who was spending time with them. The family Potluck was good, and I especially appreciate Yayoe's organizational skill and Hanni's fried chicken. Sara and Alina's wedding last Saturday was also very fun. Alina's family is Indian, and the women wore lovely sara (okay, if that were Latin, sarum would be the singular noun and sara the plural, but I'm way over my head with correct grammar here). At first, people were a little awkward about a wedding of two women, but a wedding always makes people happy, and a good time was had by all. Bob's daughter Anna told me that he looked like the
two too cool guys on SNL when he danced, but it wasn't that
bad at all. We also learned the rudiments of tango at Dagua's wedding. Sadie left a message last night saying they got in safe and sound.

Emma's vocabulary is amazing

June 28, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Emma's vocabulary is amazing. Not only does she understand all sorts of big and complicated words, but she's surprisingly in touch with her emotions and how the things around her impact her feelings.

Lately she's been carrying around a toy notebook from Blue's Clues. Jamie took it away as it was bed time. "Why you take it away from me?" Emma said tearfully. After some back and forth, she got it back and said "Now I'm happy."

Sam loves his sister

June 28, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam loves his sister. Jamie was telling me a story about how Sam took Emma into the living room and sat down with her. "Emma, I'm going to tell you a story about Princess Emma." He then went on to tell an elaborate tale about Princess Emma and her grand adventures.

Emma loves him as well. Whenever Sam gets upset, Emma becomes equally distraught and tries to give him hugs.

Sunday was filled with family

June 27, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sunday was filled with family. I took the kids to the library, both of whom were fairly grumpy throughout. Sam's new phrase is "I'm bored", which is driving Jamie and I nuts. Jamie went off to help get Brant's house sold. I think there's a plan afoot to get Dave moved into the house Victoria rents, which is only a few blocks away.

We all went over to Jenny's house for the afternoon where I kept an eye on the kids. I gave Jenny and Sadie my odd little gifts from the Haunted paper toys site, along with some safer soaps and lotions. My dad was given some chocolate covered espresso beans, one of which he gave to Emma and the rest he ate himself.

Later in the evening Anna and Sadie came over, which almost made up for the day I was sick and missed them. They brought a guitar, fiddle, and banjo, and proceeded to entertain us and the kids with music and stories. It was wonderful and I spent most of the time smiling at Emma "helping" play the banjo.

There's some more mundane excitement going on as well. In theory our house is getting painted this week, though the weather is horrible. I think we settled on a bright yellow, which should keep things cheery. Jamie's also painting our bedroom "Awesome Violet", which I never tire of saying. Busy, busy.

It was quite a whirlwind day today

June 26, 2005 by Adam in Family

It was quite a whirlwind day today. It started with Emma waking up early and Jamie and I sharing a cup of tea for awhile. After breakfast I mowed the lawn and tore down parts of a massive clematis that was growing beside our house. Since we're having someone come on Monday to start the prep work for painting, we've got lots of things to get ready, not to mention picking a color.

Sam and I played on the computer while Emma napped, then Jamie went off until dinnertime. The kids and I walked all the way to Saturday market where neither had been before. We met with Seraph, Robbie, and Isabell and enjoyed the food, music, and people. Emma was very quiet at the beginning, in awe of all the strange people wandering about. After Isabell shared her hat and magic wand, she felt better and they played together for a long while.

Afterwards we walked all the way back with a short stop at the library to cool down. Once we got home, we dug out the slip-and-slide and layed it down on the hill (movie). The kids went nuts, Sam especially, and had an extremely good time. Soon enough it was dinnertime and I had them watch the end of Beauty and the Beast while I made pizza. The kids got cookie-cutter pizzas, I got pesto, and Jamie had traditional cheese and pepperoni.

The evening's wrapping up. Jamie's reading to Emma. Sam's watching the House of Flying Daggers which I previewed last night. I'm looking forward to some time to myself.

It's Mocha Friday and I dragged myself to work

June 24, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday and I dragged myself to work. I actually feel reasonably okay at the moment, other than having my stomach feel a bit wobbly. I probably managed to sleep around 12 hours yesterday and last night combined. It's beautiful outside and I wandered outside to get a haircut. Hopefully the weekend will stay like this.

Swimming lessons continue for the kids. Emma thinks it's great and keeps talking about it at dinner. She was evidently quite good at jumping off the side.

I got to visit with Emma briefly this morning, who was very cute. She was eating her bananna yogurt and chatting away. The plan is that Jamie head out with Sadie tonight until past the kids' bedtime. We'll see how that all works out.

I was sick as a dog today

June 24, 2005 by Adam in Family

I was sick as a dog today. The worst part is that it was the same day Sadie and Anna were slotted to play with me and see the town. I took the day off of work, Jamie made an elaborate breakfast, and I was very excited.

I had my usual cough again last night, taking cough syrup before I went to bed. I slept fairly well, waking up at my usual time. Unfortunately I started getting a headache in the morning and it quickly went downhill from there. I hardly touched my breakfast when Sadie and Anna arrived. I took a nap, went with everyone to 5th Street Market for lunch, and then came home for another nap. I got up, took a bath, napped, threw up, and finally felt a little better.

It's the end of the day. Jamie was wonderful with the kids, taking them off to T-Ball while I slept like the dead. Sam had an odd little pain this evening tonight, but hopefully it'll be better in the morning. We'll see if I can manage to go to work. It doesn't appeal to me much at the moment.

Isa and I head down to Eugene on the train th...

June 22, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Isa and I head down to Eugene on the train this evening. I'm looking forward to hanging out with Sadie and Anna, and everyone else! Robbie will be down Friday afternoon.
Right now I'm working at the store doing inventory. Robbie has been adjusting to his summer classes, but still misses his old group of kids. This week they've been doing "messy art" and Robbie is coming home with tempra paint on everything!

My annoying cold continues

June 22, 2005 by Adam in Family

My annoying cold continues. I was up late coughing, so I downed some cough medicine and am my typical spacey self this morning. I predict lots of caffiene in my future.

We had Gavin and his mom Louise over for dinner last night. The two boys spent the entire time climbing on anything climbable in our yard, along with causing great distress and distruction to any snail they could find. Emma mostly follwed them around, with lots of trips to the kitchen sink to wash off odd sticky bits.

I'm taking tomorrow off to hang out with Sadie. I'm quite excited.

Well, Sam and I wrapped up Psychonauts

June 21, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

Well, Sam and I wrapped up Psychonauts. It was generally a fun, enjoyable game. Rarely do I see that sort of creativity and humor in games these days. Mostly they seem the polished big-budget types that aren't terribly creative or daring.

There really isn't that much out these days. The Summer months tend to be pretty dry gaming-wise. Fortunately there's some great stuff coming out towards the end of the year and there's always my own little project to work on.

My cough continues, though I'm hoping these a...

June 21, 2005 by Adam in Family

My cough continues, though I'm hoping these are the last few days of it. It's been so many months since I was last sick that I've forgotten what it was like.

Swimming lessons started in earnest yesterday. Sam's been doing it by himself, something he's quite proud of. He's also pretty good at it and is wanting to move to the next level after his current lessons (I think he's currently in the Angelfish group).

Emma's in the Starfish group, with Jamie helping out. The instructor ended up using her as an example, showing everyone how to float on your back and go underwater. Jamie had a good time along with everyone else. The weather's been gorgeous which helps too.

It looks like the next great house project will be to paint it. Jamie mentioned the desire to eventually paint our house to her dad, who found a nice young man to send down and get things organized. Odds are it'll happen fairly quickly. We picked out a few promising colors yesterday and will probably do some painting over the next couple days. Busy, busy.

The weekend is coming to a close

June 20, 2005 by Adam in Family

The weekend is coming to a close. Happy father's day to all you dads out there. I got a present from Sam that had a crayon picture of me along with his favorite things about me. Evidently I'm good with computers and tell Sam I love him a lot. Made me tear up.

Yesterday was fairly uneventful. Dave, Kirsten, and Josh came over for awhile, much to the kid's amusement. Today we took a trip over to Hendrick's Park to hike around, then stopped by Humble Bagel for lunch. The afternoon was play time with kids. Sam and I played with his new pirate toy. Emma is non-stop singing and dancing and playing.

Now it's off to work again tomorrow. Hopefully tonight I can catch up with sleep. I got the cold that everyone has been getting and it's keeping me up at night.

From Typhoid Mary - I have a terrible cough, ...

June 17, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

From Typhoid Mary - I have a terrible cough, and I hope I
haven't infected anyone. We're going to Dagua's wedding on
Saturday in Yachats, and staying at the beach house. Bob has an old friend who is in the hospice stage of cancer, so
we may come back early on Sunday. On the other hand, we both
caught the same cold/whooping cough/who knows? so if the weather is sunny we might bundle up in big blankets and try to get some Vitamin D. I'll have my cell phone. It would help if I could learn to use it.

I've attached a picture of me, Anna, and Maur...

June 17, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

I've attached a picture of me, Anna, and Mauricio, my close friend here from Urugay. He flew home last week, with a masters in development economics in hand, is getting married on July 9th, and then flying with his new bride to Italy to start a PhD program in political economy. Sigh. He was such a great part of my time here, and I wanted him to be on adamandjamie.com....

Yet another Mocha Friday

June 17, 2005 by Adam in Family

Yet another Mocha Friday. Sam's out of school now, so it's a bit of a challenge for Jamie to figure out what to do with both kids all day long. I think they're going to get a fish for Sam's new fish tank this morning, and perhaps come to visit me this afternoon.

Emma's got a bit of a cold and has been feeling lousy. I watched her as Sam and Jamie went off to a T-ball game at cheese park (a.k.a. Washington Park). Emma and I watched movies of her as a baby, made some Spaghetti, then walked down to watch the final moments of the game. A quick bath and then everyone was off to bed.

Hopefully this weekend will be a bit slow. I'm excited about Sadie's arrival next week.

Today was Sam's last day of school

June 16, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Today was Sam's last day of school. He brought home all his journals and yearbooks, said goodbye to his teary-eyed teacher Mrs. Staysack, and started his Summer vacation. Hopefully the transition will go smoothly. I'm very proud of Sam and think his kindergarten year went extremely well. He's confident, made many friends, and did very well scholastically.

It was a treat reading through his journals. They'd say things like "I like to do my star chart so I can play with my dad". Though he sometimes wears me out, I love spending time with him and I'm glad he feels the same.

Jamie also got Sam a new fish tank, though it's currently without fish. They went with a pirate theme, complete with a skull at the bottom and a Jolly Roger as a backdrop. Quite cool.

Very quick note

June 15, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Very quick note. It's beautiful weather, and nothing fell over in the earthquake. I had a long telephone visit with Sadie. She and Anna are sounding very content, a reassurance to any mom. Much love, Sue

It's good to see that Emma continues to explo...

June 15, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

It's good to see that Emma continues to explode the gender binary, and she's only two! What a sophisticated feminist. Anna and I are also excited to hang out with the ladies and lady-identified family members (that means you, Dad), and hopefully everyone else will kid-watch while us "girls" go for cocktails on Friday night. We're having a bunch of the Williamstown young Turks to play music and drink beer tonight. Much bawdy sailor fun is bound to happen. Anna goes in for a job interview tomorrow in New Lebanon, NY, at a small woman-owned firm that may be right up her alley. I'm very excited to be a kept woman, and she has promised me a mink for every day of the month. Hopefully the summer will be a cool one. Much love from the other (east coast) Northwest.

I'm posting from the middle of my exam - wait...

June 15, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

I'm posting from the middle of my exam - waiting for my turn to go study fabric swatches. After this I only have one more project to complete for tomorrow morning!
Robbie and Isa headed down to Eugene for a few days of R&R before summer camps begin, and we're gearing up at work for inventory, kit building and distrabution, and a surprise visit from the corporate auditors!
I'm hoping to get a few days off while Sadie and Anna are here to play and relax. It will be nice to be around family for a bit.

Emma was up early this morning and I was hang...

June 15, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Emma was up early this morning and I was hanging around the kitchen table with her and Jamie. For some reason, I was pointing out that she and Jamie were girls and I was a boy. I'd point to her and say "Emma's a girl", point to Jamie and say "mom's a girl", and point to myself and say "I'm a boy."

Emma smiled and pointed to Jamie. "Mom's a kitty." She pointed to herself and said "I'm a man." She then pointed to me and said "You're a milkman."

I had to stifle my giggles so that I didn't wake up Sam. It's amazing that she's only two and still has a great sense of humor.

It was a fairly busy Monday

June 14, 2005 by Adam in Family

It was a fairly busy Monday. Jamie and Emma stopped in to bring me flowers from our garden. I think Jamie was a bit frustrated that Emma decided not to nap and wanted a little backup. We wandered around campus for awhile and we showed Jamie all the cool places we hang out when Jamie works out in the gym.

Later that night we went to one of Sam's T-ball games. I was woefully unprepared, trying to entertain Emma for an hour and a half. On Thursday when we do the next one, I'll be sure to bring a bag of toys and snacks.

After the kids went to bed, Jamie and I sat on the couch and watched the sun set. It was a nice end to the day.

Generic Heading

June 14, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

One more week!

The weekend has come and gone

June 13, 2005 by Adam in Family

The weekend has come and gone. Sunday was a very nice day. In the morning we headed off to the library and played around. Jamie was very nice and let me find some books for myself. Sam got a couple that he was excited about, sitting down and reading them during lunch all by himself. It's cool that he started this school year barely able to read and now he can read most simple things by himself.

We played with the kids during the afternoon, most of it outside. Sam's allergies are acting up a bit, even with Claritin. Eventually we headed inside and my mom came over to watch the kids for a couple hours.

Jamie and I took a leisurely walk down to a restaurant near Humble Bagel. It was excellent food and very nice to spend some quiet time with Jamie.

Oh! I just checked and got all your wonderful...

June 12, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Oh! I just checked and got all your wonderful Happy Birthday messages! Thank you! I feel especially old because I chose to spend my birhtday in a suit at a conference. All is well in Mass, and counting the days until I'm with ya'all.

The other day, Emma destroyed one of Sam's sa...

June 12, 2005 by Adam in Emma

The other day, Emma destroyed one of Sam's sandcastles he was working on. Sam was mad, and told her so. For the entire afternoon, Emma and Sam discussed the issue. She kept telling me "Sam mad at me." Emma turned on the charm, apologizing, giving him hugs, and saying she was sorry. After a very long while, Sam decided he wasn't mad any more and they went back to being best of friends.

Yesterday was packed, from morning to night

June 12, 2005 by Adam in Family

Yesterday was packed, from morning to night. I played with the kids as Jamie made breakfast, then we all went off to Sam's back-to-back T-ball games. He had a good time and their team played reasonably well. Sam got to play on the pitcher's mound, so he was fielding all the balls for one game. I took Jamie and Emma home in the middle of the second, and my mom joined me in the middle of the last one.

After T-ball, Sam and I stopped off at home briefly then went to South Eugene to watch Treasure Island. We got there a bit early, so we wandered the halls of my old Alma Mater. Some of the murals were exactly the same as when I went to school there nearly twenty years ago. It was very nostalgic, even the smell was the same.

The play was fun and Sam enjoyed it immensely. We got a "pieces of eight" song stuck in our heads afterwards. Then it was home where we wound down and headed for sleep.


June 10, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Arg... The reason I started posting yesterday was to wish Sadie a Happy Birthday and Dad and Yayoe a happy anniversey - and low and behold it was the one thing I forgot to do.
We love you, you are a continuing source of inspiration.
From Isa: "I love you. I miss you."

Sweet, sweet Mocha Friday

June 10, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sweet, sweet Mocha Friday. I've got a bunch of "to do" e-mails sitting in queue today, but I've decided to take a short breather before I dive in. Work has been extremely productive over the last few days, especially since I've been avoiding meetings like the plague.

Last night we went to the carnival at Sam's school. It was lots of fun, with endless games, activities, prizes, and auctions. Sam drove cars, threw balls, had a squirt gun fight, and returned with assorted plastic treasures. Jamie won an auction for a basket of tea goodies. The entire production is to raise money for the school's art program, so it's for a good cause.

The weekend is shaping up to be quite busy. It's a good thing we didn't end up going up to Portland. Tomorrow we have three baseball games and then I'm taking Sam to see the Treasure Island musical at South Eugene. Should be a fun though exhausting day.

Perhaps we can rest Sunday and have some quiet family time together.

I would like to add my personal birthday mess...

June 10, 2005 by Jamie in Jamie

I would like to add my personal birthday message to Sadie today. Thanks for including me as a "Sister" in your life! We are all thinking of you.

Happy birthday, Sweet Sadie! Let's add a coup...

June 09, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Happy birthday, Sweet Sadie! Let's add a couple more celebrations to our belated Father's Day, namely Sadie's birthday and Anna's graduation. I am feeling fortunate today to be associated with such wonderful kids. It was Aric's track and field awards banquet last night. He got a bunch of awards for "winning" but I was most proud because he was one of only a handful of students who had a 3.5 grade average, and because the other members of the team and the coaches voted him "most inspirational" male member of the team. I think about you all and what fine people and good parents you all are; none of you can really understand until you yourselves are old how satisfying that is to a parent. I know you are a little bored by this speech, but it is heartfelt. I also have complete faith that the wall between life and death is pretty transparent, and Dick is always aware of each of you and is travelling quietly along on with you on the paths of your lives. Love, om

My week is slowly wrapping itself up

June 09, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

My week is slowly wrapping itself up. I now have only two major projects and three exams left! The load is starting to lighten, though I'm working hard on keeping focus.
Robbie and Isa are off to the zoo this morning with Isa's school. Robbie has gotten his room moved and set up for the summer, and the two of them are hoping to head down south for a few days next week.
Isa will be making her debut modeling appearance on the 18th in the Ai spring fashion show. Maybe I'll try to get some pic's that can be posted. Nothing like child exploitation to liven up the family website!

It's not quite Friday, so I'm only having tea...

June 09, 2005 by Adam in Adam

It's not quite Friday, so I'm only having tea this morning. Sadie sent me a CD in the mail which I'm listening to, my only lifeline to the world of hip music. Left to my own devices, I'd probably be listening to weird things that drift my way across the wide Internet.

Work is good, if busy again. I have endless tasks of moving data about and modifying web pages. Hopefully the tunes will get me through the day.

Emma had her two year checkup at the doctor's...

June 08, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Emma had her two year checkup at the doctor's this morning. I went along with everyone to provide moral support.

Emma was happy and cheerful the whole time, giving Doctor Jimmy a spontaneous hug. She requested that they take her "temperature" in particular and dutifully submitted to various measurement and prodding. Even the shot at the end didn't make her cry. Her cheeks flushed and she seemed a little scared, then she was fine again.

She's tall and thin for her age, but we already knew that. Since she's in the 25th percentile for weight, we got quizzed on eating habits. Sam was the same way, as I recall, so we're not particularly worried. The doctor was amazed with her verbal skills, just like he was with Sam.

We had Emma well trained to identify one's philtrum, as that was the one body part Sam couldn't identify at that age. Sadly he never asked. Gotta start impressing those authority figures early on, I say.

The easiest way is to just e-mail them to me

June 08, 2005 by Adam in Betsy

The easiest way is to just e-mail them to me.

Adam?????? How can I add pictures to my posti...

June 08, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Adam?????? How can I add pictures to my postings? Patrick has some terrific shots I thought I'd share!

Sue, the best bets to reach me are: Office 6...

June 08, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Sue, the best bets to reach me are:
Office 614-291-8000
Company Cell 614-206-2110
My cell 614-578-5890
Patrick's Cell 614-561-4267
Home phone 740-246-4461
Today is the boys last day of school. Patrick has a little graduation ceremony to go to the high school from the middle school. Should be nice. I'm going as his parental unit.
It has turned beastly hot here. After a cold damp spring we have now had 4 days of 90+ degrees. Its not so bad at the farm, I finally got central A/C and the breeze moves there but working in the city has been ghastly. It's amazing how normally pleasant people turn into aliens when it gets this hot. Hugs to all. Bets

Betsy, would you send me your phone numbers? ...

June 07, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Betsy, would you send me your phone numbers? I have gotten
completely messed up on which number I have (if any) is work, cell, and home.

The last month or so has been full of fun and...

June 07, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

The last month or so has been full of fun and kid stuff.
Last night was a baby shower for Kai and Baby Olivia, who is now two months old. Lots of old friends - Seraph, Amber was down from Seattle, and sent her best to you.
I got to babysit for Jordan and Dez on Saturday, and Sunday was a really nice bar-b-que, courtesy of Jenny, for her birthday. How could this be her 35th birthday when she
was only ten last year? Got to see Sam's year end kindergarten program in his role as the Eggman, and also his last soccer game. In Bob's family, his sweet daughter Anna is ploughing through finals at the U of O. His son Aric did well in the district track meet, and took second in State, losing to a guy who now has the second fastest time in that event in the United States.
Erin and Margie should be around for the belated Father's Day party; Margie and Duffy want to buy a house here for Erin as an investment. Thanks to Yayoe for her
organizational skill, and Sadie and Anna, we are so glad you are coming.

Work was pretty busy yesterday

June 07, 2005 by Adam in Family

Work was pretty busy yesterday. I have an all-day meeting today as well, though I'm sneaking out a bit early. Jamie's planning on going to a four o'clock step aerobics class, so we'll do a kid hand-off and I'll entertain them until she's done.

Sam had more T-ball practice last night. Though I mostly watch Emma, I'll occasionally glance up to see him make a particularly good hit or catch. He also seems to be having a good time hanging out with the other boys and running around, which is the main point of these things.

We were planning on going up to Portland this upcoming weekend, but that fell through. It sounds like we'll be seeing Treasure Island, the musical, which one of the neighbor boys is in. We're a pirate-loving family, so it should be the height of entertainment.

Another weekend has wrapped itself up

June 06, 2005 by Adam in Family

Another weekend has wrapped itself up. Sunday Josh and Ray came over to entertain us. Most of the time I was in the basement with the kids while Jamie and her dad talked and watched a movie.

Josh was great with the kids, as always. It also sounds like he'll be around for awhile this summer before heading off to Tennessee to live and go to school.

In the evening, the kids, Jamie, and I went to the rose garden to pass the time. It was beautiful out and the overcast weather kept most people away. The kids chased each other through the rows of roses. Jamie and I held hands. It was a nice ending to the weekend.

Today was launch day

June 05, 2005 by Adam in Family

Today was launch day. Yesterday after work the kids and I went to Eugene Toy and Hobby to pick up a rocket. Sam and I worked on it last night and again this morning, gluing all the little pieces together so that we'd have something to launch with my dad today.

The maiden voyage didn't go very well. After the engine burns, it blows out a short burst from the other end to shoot off the top and extend the parachute. Unfortunately the parachute wasn't glued in tightly enough and it flew out, causing the rocket to land hard and emerge slightly bent.

Fortunately we had a second one handy and launched that five or six more times. Getting excited, we picked up a two-stage rocket and returned home for lunch. My dad managed to super glue all his fingers and inappropriately glue the rocket several times, but an hour or so later we returned to the field by Roosevelt school and had an incredible launch. We thought we'd lost it as it was completely gone for about ten seconds, then we spotted the upper stage slowly returning.

Unfortunately the second launch ended up with the top stage not separating out. Instead it burned in place, causing a fairly large hole. We decided to call it a day and vowed to continue our experiments at a later date. The kids were both ecstatic about the whole thing.

I had the kids in the evening while Jamie went off to her friend Gillian. She's a nice English woman who's a grandparent of a classmate of Sam. The kids and I made pizza with cookie cutters, much to their amusement.

It was a fairly quiet day yesterday

June 03, 2005 by Adam in Family

It was a fairly quiet day yesterday. Jamie and the kids played with John, Natalie, and Sharon at the park. Sam had gym during kindergarden today. Emma ran around being excited and cute.

Work is somewhat exciting today. I've got my mocha and rebooted a server, all before 8 a.m. There's some mysterious problems I'm trying to solve, as well as a fair amount of project work on my list. At least it's rarely boring around here.

The week is winding down already

June 02, 2005 by Adam in Family

The week is winding down already. I took Sam to T-ball practice last night, mostly following Emma around as she explored the playground and visited with assorted people.

She's incredibly friendly, going up to people and asking their name. Everyone's amazed at her verbal abilities at such a young age, easily charming them with her witty reparte.

I'm hoping it clears up this weekend as I'd like to shoot off rockets with my dad and assorted children and nephews. We'll see if we can arrange it. Jamie's dad is also coming to town to spend some time with us. The other day Emma said "Grandpa Ray's my favorite guy." It was very cute.

Sam's T-ball continues

June 02, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam's T-ball continues. He seems to enjoy it, though for some reason he doesn't really talk about it much. We drive over to Adam's school, he plays, then we drive back with nary a word.

Summer break is sneaking right up on us too. We've got a variety of things lined up for Sam - a camp on cartooning and another called "Wizard's camp". Jamie's also working on various babysitting help to keep her going. This is the first of many Summer breaks and hopefully we can figure out how to do it well.

Over the weekend Sam and I picked up a new co...

May 31, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

Over the weekend Sam and I picked up a new computer game called Psychonauts. It's quite funny, very creative in both art direction and story. Basically you're at a summer camp for psychic kids, all of which look like weird clowns with big teeth and funny hair. Your tasks are vaguely comical and typically involve delving into people's brains. At the moment I'm going into the mind of a mutant fish. It looks like a giant city populated by lungfish and you're an incredibly huge monster. Very amusing.

My favorite quote after learning to set things on fire: "Remember, use your abilities only when it's useful . . . or entertaining. And when trying to impress girls, make sure they don't have on lots of hair spray."

Sam had a nightmare Sunday night and crawled ...

May 31, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sam had a nightmare Sunday night and crawled into bed with me. He dreamed that Emma was on his bed saying "Eat you Sammo" and tried to eat him up. For the rest of the dream she chased him around while he used hand gestures to tell Jamie as he couldn't talk.

In the morning, Sam and I played on the computer and went to the park to practice baseball. As I was getting sand off him, I spotted a small black thing stuck behind his ear. I ended up taking out a contact to get a better look at it. It turns out it was a tick, probably picked up while hiking. I'd never seen one before, so I read up about it, then removed it with tweezers. It's now sitting in a sample container and I've got Jamie watching for the outbreak of Lyme's disease just in case.

Emma and Jamie arrived safe and sound around noon. The rest of the day was spent entertaining kids until we parents collapsed towards the end of the day. I'm almost looking forward to the relative relaxation of work.

Ta Da! I'm alive! I can't say the training we...

May 30, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Ta Da! I'm alive! I can't say the training went without a hitch, but I think all the hitches were teachable moments for myself and the WAI leaders. I've read through all the assessments, written all the thank-you notes and apologies, returned most college vehicles to their rightful places, and am very much ready to move on.

It's heartbreaking to say goodbye to all the students who accidentally became my confidantes along the way this year. I sent them all off last week, nearly dry-eyed and almost professional. Under the circumstances of the mythologized but delicate young teacher/student relationship, I can't know if they know how much they've taught me.

Emma had a fine birthday yesterday, often wis...

May 29, 2005 by Adam in Family

Emma had a fine birthday yesterday, often wishing herself a happy birthday along the way. The party was princess themed and many of the guests showed up in fancy dresses and were promptly handed a tiara. We were very lucky with the weather as it poured all morning, became briefly sunny for the party, and then thunderstorms rolled in during the evening.

This morning Judy, Jamie, and Emma headed off to the coast until tomorrow. Sam and I went hiking to the top of Spencer's Butte this morning. I was amazed at his energy. I could hardly keep up with him for the last stretch. A little squirrel begged for food from him, then we turned around and headed back to the car.

We hit the mall, picking up a bat and ball for practice, along with a new computer game. Sam's playing with Legos and he wants me to join him soon. After a little snack, I suppose I will.

Happy Birthday's to Jenny and Emma! I wish t...

May 28, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

Happy Birthday's to Jenny and Emma! I wish that I could be there this weekend to wish you both many more, but alas I am up to my neck in school. Isa and Robbie headed down this afternoon, and still no word that they've made it in. I imagin that traffic is crazy!

Ooooh, fun times with grandkids

May 28, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

Ooooh, fun times with grandkids. I watched Isa for a few days, and got to go see Sam as the Eggman at his school program yesterday evening. Can't wait to see everyone at
Emma's birthday. I am planning to wear a princess dress.
Miguel and I worked at the office, cleaning gutters, etc
this afternoon. My house is a fright... it is very warm - right now the most attractive thing about Bob is his AC.
Love you all, and I'm looking forward to tomorrow.

Happy birthday Emma

May 27, 2005 by Adam in Emma

Happy birthday Emma. You're two.

First off, it's Emma's birthday today

May 27, 2005 by Adam in Family

First off, it's Emma's birthday today. She turns two and has been very excited about it all week. The big party is tomorrow, which she's very much looking forward to.

Yesterday was completely filled with kids and activities. I had a naive belief that I could put in a few hours of work, though that was quickly dashed.

It was very sweet sneaking upstairs and seeing the kids in the morning. It was pretty clear that they missed me as they just wanted to play the whole time. Emma's first words were "My birthday is Friday". We got up and I drank some much needed coffee after only getting six or so hours of sleep. Then we played non-stop, spending a lot of time outside as the day has been so warm. I took Sam to school and watched Emma until she fell asleep on my lap. Later I picked up Sam and went to see the new Star Wars movie, which we both enjoyed. Finally it was pizza and off to Sam's kindergarden play.

It was a fairly elaborate production, with the kids singing, dancing, using sign language, and putting on skits. Sam was Humpty Dumpty, so he got to bend in half and stick out his tongue. It was fun watching everyone and Sam seemed very energetic about the whole thing. It's hard to think that school will be ending soon. (movie)

I'm off to work in a bit, trying to catch up after being gone for most of a week. Hopefully my Friday mocha will help get me through the day.

I made it safe and sound back at home

May 26, 2005 by Adam in Family

I made it safe and sound back at home. Coming into the Eugene airport at midnight last night, there was a beautiful harvest moon on the horizion.

The second day of meetings was long, though it was nice to get a chance to talk to some of my coworkers individually afterwards. Dave and I eventually wandered over to the airport to return the car and head to Seattle.

We spent a lot of time in the Seattle airport, nearly three hours. Fortunately it's a beautiful place, full of interesting art and archetecture. There was one piece in particular that we both thought was cool, a duck landing on water that was made out of individually hung little figurines. Later on, I found a plug and did some laptop stuff for awhile, then we wandered around the shops and looked at things.

Now I'm home, though I didn't get much sleep last night. I'm restraining myself from going upstairs and waking everyone up. I sure missed everyone.

The meetings are done and my trip is wrapping up

May 25, 2005 by Adam in Adam

The meetings are done and my trip is wrapping up. It's just Dave Mehl and I left, sitting in an empty conference room until it's time to go to the airport. We'll probably go to the main hospital to take a look, get some dinner, and then wait for the plane to arrive. Then it's a two and a half hour wait in Seattle and we pull into Eugene at midnight.

Hopefully my car will start.

I'm still up in Bellingham, Washington on my ...

May 25, 2005 by Adam in Family

I'm still up in Bellingham, Washington on my business trip. I've yet to talk to Jamie on the phone these last couple nights. The closest I've got is talking to Emma who was being babysat at the time. The plan is that I'm coming back to Eugene in the wee hours of the morning tonight/tomorrow. Hopefully all will go well.

Yesterday was endless meetings, a short break at the hotel, and then out to dinner with my team. It was somewhat fun, though I was feeling pretty exhausted at the end. I crawled back into my hotel room around nine, read a little, and conked right out.

Now we're off to yet more meetings in just a few minutes, wrapping up around 2 pm. I'm not quite sure how I'll entertain myself until my plane leaves at 7 pm tonight. Hopefully I can find a quiet conference room and catch up on work for a bit. Since I was the one who rented the van, I may also play taxi driver and shuttle people back and forth from the airport.

Note: If you look closely at the newspaper, you'll see my coworker doctored it up a bit.

It's been so long since I've posted, that I r...

May 24, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

It's been so long since I've posted, that I really don't know where to start!
Isa was sick with an ear infection, landing us in urgent care a week ago. As neither Robbie or I could take a week off (parental guilt, guilt...) we sent her down to Eugene to spend the week with grandma's.
She is now feeling much better and somehow seems more grown up every day!
Robbie is starting to feel the drag of the end of the school year. Abandoning his monthly newsletter, and relaxing the number of projects he plans.
I've been working away on school, though never quite catching up! Several of my friends have just returned from E3, and I've been hearing nonstop about the gaming world and computers this week.
Love to all!

The plane touched down in Bellingham less tha...

May 24, 2005 by Adam in Adam

The plane touched down in Bellingham less than an hour ago. I'm sitting in a Best Western, having figured out how to hook up the wireless network adapter and connect to the Internet. It's very weird as I'm not a regular business traveler. I can hear the cars on the interstate driving by. The room itself is decorated in the faux fancy style.

The trip went fairly well, especially as four of my coworkers went with me. We joked with each other and admired the sights. In a few moments I'll be off to a nearby Mexican place.

I still miss my family. I got to talk to Emma on the phone, who's being watched by Dave and Kirsten while Jamie takes Sam to his T-Ball game. It's going to be a big and lonely king sized bed for me tonight.

In one hour, I'll be beginning the four day W...

May 23, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

In one hour, I'll be beginning the four day Where Am I leader training, with Rick in Bolivia. I'll have some help from a student and my colleague Matt, but I'm supposed to be the lecturer/preacher/inspirational speaker for the training. I'm terrified beyond belief, as my leadership style leans toward desperate enthusiasm, not calming visualizations. But the Outing Club's director came in this morning and reminded me that the only thing I have to do is get the leaders to just be here now. I'm still working on being Here Now myself.

I played a little Knights of the Old Republic...

May 23, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

I played a little Knights of the Old Republic 2 over the weekend. Now I just have the urge to finish the game and be done with it. Fortunately I think I'm getting pretty close.

E3 has come and gone, the big gaming convention of the year. Nothing too excited appeared. I was really hoping for some NWN2 screenshots, but nothing showed up. There were some interesting games that look interesting: Alan Wake and Spore seemed very different.

And so another weekend is behind me

May 23, 2005 by Adam in Family

And so another weekend is behind me. The entire time seemed a blur. Saturday we got some plants for garden containers. Dave and Josh came by in the afternoon.

Sunday I mowed the lawn in the morning. In the afternoon I went on a grand expedition with the kids, starting at the duck pond next to campus and traveling across the bridge to a quiet area by the river. Both Sam and Emma liked exploring, throwing rocks and sticks, and looking for ants. We fed the ducks, stood under a bridge as a train ran past, and got a little soggy from a brief rain shower.

Afterwards we had a bagel snack and picked up Jamie from Angie's house, where she had been playing croquet for three hours.

Now it's time for me to get ready to go on my business trip. I'm not showered, packed, or remotely ready. Jamie just handed Emma to me and I'm feeling a bit frantic. Fortunately I have until noon before I need to be at the airport. Hopefully the flight goes well.

Sweet, sweet Mocha Friday

May 20, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sweet, sweet Mocha Friday.

Jamie spilled some of the beans last night. She's had part of the garden finished as phase one of a combined birthday and tenth anniversary gift. It's really nice to be able to look out and see some greenery next to our patio. I've been itching to replant for some time now. Hopefully this weekend we can visit a garden store and get some plants for various planters. Even cooler would be some water plants for our porch pond.

Sam's first T-Ball practice was last night. I took Emma with me. She spent the entire time with Sharon, John and Natalie's mom. Sharon's purse was filled with all sorts of interesting treasures, far more fascinating than her brother. Sam seemed to have a good time and thought practice went really fast.

Today is quiet so far. Sam woke up with a bloody nose, as he sometimes does. Jamie will be bringing the kids over briefly so she can work out. I'm looking forward to the weekend.

We had a brief break from evening sports afte...

May 20, 2005 by Adam in Sam

We had a brief break from evening sports after soccer ended. Now T-Ball begins.

Last night's practice went well. There seemed to be less running around than soccer, so Sam was much less exhausted. The focus seemed to be on following rules and getting the kids to line up and wait their turn to bat. Mostly I tried to protect Emma from the flying balls the kids were pitching.

Sam's doing pretty well these days. He's excited about the upcoming weekend with just me. Already he's been pouring through his pirate activity book, looking for eyepatches and hook hands to make.

I took Emma to see Sam's practice last night

May 20, 2005 by Adam in Emma

I took Emma to see Sam's practice last night. John, Natalie, and their mom Sharon were there as well. Natalie had a monster suit that Emma climbed into and wore the entire time.

Emma's doing really well these days, chatting and being pleasant most of the time. She's extremely verbal and funny, which makes parenting easier. Towards the end of the day she does get a bit grumpy, though.

Jamie's working on having Emma go to sleep by herself. Instead of laying next to her, Jamie sits by the bed until Emma goes to sleep. She'll sit up in her bed, eyes flickering closed, until she conks over and finally goes to bed.

Sam's first T-Ball practice is tonight

May 19, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sam's first T-Ball practice is tonight. Hopefully the springtime drizzle holds off for an hour or so. I remember the first day of soccer had Sam completely drenched.

The flower bed excitement continues. Two men mysteriously left yesterday after taking out all the hard clay from the beds and putting in fresh dirt. I have a funny feeling that the plants from yesterday may actually be in the ground. Fun stuff!

Anna's stuff has officially moved into my apa...

May 18, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

Anna's stuff has officially moved into my apartment! While she is still deciding between a plethora of summer options, she has decided to grace me with her presence for a few more days... then off to Michigan. She'll return to Williamstown in a shiny Honda Civic where that old maroon Windstar used to be. She has a semi-job working on the curriculum of a senior engineering course, and then she might go to Uganda to help build a school for a month or find a job. Is she feeling the pressure? Maybe a little.

Work is all planning and coordinating for the Where Am I? leader training next week. It's a little crazy, but there is the cutest chipmunk outside my window right at this moment. Summer in Williamstown brings many gifts.

For months now, Jamie's been very coy wheneve...

May 18, 2005 by Adam in Family

For months now, Jamie's been very coy whenever I ask her when we can start working on our garden. Last year the neighbor built a new fence and we had to rip out the plant bed next to the patio. After I pried a bit, she flat out told me not to, so I could sense the surprise coming on. Well, last night our gardener guys appeared and there was a variety of pretty plants laying around on our patio this morning. Exciting stuff.

Emma had a really hard time sleeping last night. Jamie was up with her at around three in the morning and I joined them on the couch for an early morning snack a bit after that. Eventually they got back to sleep and I caught a bit more sleep as well.

Boy my last posting was Doomsday material, or...

May 18, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Boy my last posting was Doomsday material, or a bad Hollywood movie. We are still quite chilly here in the Midwest with nighttime temperatures in the 30's and 40's although warming to the 0's and 70's during the day. If the trend continues through the summer the AC repairs guys will be twiddling their thumbs.
One sad note on our end, for those of you who know little Red Dog, he has reinjured his back and the Vet school can't do much for him. They have sent him home on pain killers and we are hoping that time, patience and love will heal him. I'm collecting loose change to buy him a cart as his progress with standing and walking has stopped completely. Patrick loves him so that as long as he isn't suffering we will continue the fight. Love to all, P. and the boys (and little Red Dog)

Since I posted a picture of Kai with her newb...

May 17, 2005 by Adam in Family

Since I posted a picture of Kai with her newborn baby a couple months ago, it's only fair that I do the same with her sister Kate. Kate is an old family friend and is also on my same team at work. She had the baby a couple days ago and everyone seems to be doing well.

The kids came to work for a visit while Jamie worked out. Emma charmed everyone she met, getting the woman behind the bagel counter to do all sorts of odd things for her entertainment. Sam watched in amusement for awhile, then we wandered around campus some more and headed home.

I'm getting all ready for my work trip next week. It also sounds like Sam and I will have a boys-only weekend after Emma's birthday. She and Jamie are going to Portland for a couple days while us boys hang out at home. I think the new Star Wars movie will be out by then. Hmm . . .

Sunday started early with Emma up at 5:30 in ...

May 16, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sunday started early with Emma up at 5:30 in the morning. I was a little frazzled by the time breakfast rolled around. Afterwards I painted the new window frames and Emma went to bed early. Jamie and I finished watching The Big Sleep, which was a great movie. After lunch, we split up and Jamie went to Angie's while the kids and I went to Hendrick's park.

We had a great time, despite the rain. There were inch worms hanging off the trees from silk by the dozens, much to Emma's amusement. They also spent a long while playing in a fountain, constructing dams and generally getting messy. Finally we went for bagels and cream cheese, then headed home to watch a Harry Potter movie.

Jamie was home late, so I ended up making pizza with cookie cutters. Emma especially liked eating the olive eyeballs off the bunny-shaped pizza.

Sam's done with soccer and T-Ball starts next...

May 15, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Sam's done with soccer and T-Ball starts next week. He's pretty much the same boy as ever, into Legos, computer games, and finding bugs in the garden.

He's been doing well making friends at school, which is promising. He had Gavin over last week and plays with a few more buddies from time to time.

It was a fairly quiet Saturday

May 15, 2005 by Adam in Family

It was a fairly quiet Saturday. Jamie went shopping while I entertained kids in the morning. On Friday we got our new upstairs windows put in, so we sanded them and hopefully can paint them today. While Emma napped we watched The Big Sleep, an old Humpry Bogart movie that was quite entertaining. The afternoon was spent at Oakway mall, playing in the grass and buying clothes for me.

It's Sunday now, with Emma up at 5:30 and handed to me by a tired Jamie. Emma's now watching Pooh and eating cereal. And the day goes on.

Sweet, sweet Mocha Friday

May 13, 2005 by Adam in Family

Sweet, sweet Mocha Friday. The weather has been wonderful for the last couple days, though I did notice my allergies starting too. I'll soon get into the habit of popping Claritin like candy, I suspect.

My mom came over last night and entertained Emma for a long while. Emma was friendly and chatty, enjoying having someone to make little pictures for her and draw smiley faces on her toes.

Sam had a friend over after school. He and Gavin went around searching for snails and slugs. Sam was busy executing them, while Gavin saved a bunch of snails and took them home.

The weekend is likely going to be a quiet one. I'm hoping Jamie and I can spend some time together as the last few weekends have seemed overly busy, along with the sickness that we're now finally over. Everyone seems in a cheerful mood, which is nice.

For some reason, it took me about 12,000 year...

May 12, 2005 by Sue in Wielesek

For some reason, it took me about 12,000 years to clean up after Easter. I have finally got the floor mopped, everything put away, returned Robbie and Seraph's computer
cord, but not yet ironed the tablecloths. Everyone was sweet to me on Mothers Day. I got to see or talk to all the kids. Alma's daughter Erica called to wish me happy mothers day, as did my wonderful worker guy Miguel. Boyfriend Bob is
fine, and all the high schools are doing District track and
field. We went to the Preliminaries yesterday, and it was so
cold that Debbie (Bob's ex-wife) and I huddled under a car blanket, trying hard not to move much. Hmmm, we need a contest to find a good name for the relation I have with Yayoe and Deb. Co-consorts? That sounds quite regal. Love to all, mom

Wednesday already

May 11, 2005 by Adam in Family

Wednesday already. Soccer season is over for now and I'm not sure when T-Ball starts up. Mostly the kids and I have been hanging out in the evening, playing with playdough and drawing. Sam's been having me read Goosebumps stories to him, this one about an evil dummy. He's going through a phase where he likes to be a little scared, but not too much.

I have a work trip planned in a couple weeks. I dread traveling to meetings, thinking it fairly pointless in this electronic age. It'll be weird to be away from Jamie and the kids for a few days too. I can't really remember what it's like to have hours of time to myself.

Mother's day was fairly quiet

May 09, 2005 by Adam in Family

Mother's day was fairly quiet. Sam and I delivered flowers over the hill to my mom. The rest of the day was spent entertaining kids and giving Jamie a chance to relax for awhile. We didn't go anywhere or do anything terribly important. Just lots of drawing, kitchen science experiments, running around in the basement, and a show or two.

The only bad thing that happened was that Jamie managed to cut her hand fairly badly on the recycling. Hopefully she can manage two-kids one handed today.

We went to Cannon Beach yesterday afternoon t...

May 08, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

We went to Cannon Beach yesterday afternoon to celebrate a surprise birthday dinner for Cheikh. It was nice walking on the beach in the evening with friends, and Isa took full advantage of the situation to charm a great many of the adults into acting like children and playing in the surf. Luckily I packed extra clothes!
For Mother's Day Robbie and Isa snuck off this morning to get some flowers, and then wisked me off to a beautiful resturaunt for breakfast before church. I don't know what Robbie had to promise Isa to behave so well, but it worked!
I am now down at the school, trying to plow through some work before play rehersal tonight. When I left, Isa was happily playing with the neighbor kids and Robbie was catching up on televised sports. Ahhh...the lazy days of spring/summer are apon us!

Happy Mother's Day to all

May 08, 2005 by Adam in Family

Happy Mother's Day to all. Sam had planned all week for a tea party to surprise Jamie. I made crepes and tea with the help of the kids. Emma dropped pats of butter on the skillet while Sam set the table and helped beat the whip cream. Jamie was very happy, as she loved breakfast, her presents, and being able to sleep in and take a shower.

Yesterday was fun. Sam had his last soccer game and got a trophy given to him by coach Mike. The whole family showed up, including my mom, Jamie's dad, Dave, Kirsten, and even Josh. They all stopped by for dinner as well, with Dave showing off his Hawaii trip movies. Josh and the kids played endlessly, much to their amusement.

I haven't had much time to play any new games...

May 08, 2005 by Adam in Adam's Games

I haven't had much time to play any new games lately. Splinter Cell and Knights of the Old Republic 2 continue to sit unused on my hard drive.

Sam's been playing old games again, mostly Black and White, but also Garry's Mod for Half-Life 2. It's the one where you can play around with physics, spawning creatures, attaching wheels and thrusters to things, and launching weird junk in odd directions.

He spawned a creature to attack, and configured his rocket launcher to fire televisions. He started launching them at the creature and exclaimed, "Too much TV can be bad for you!" It had me cracking up and soon enough the beast had died under a pile of televisions.

I am currently listening to Johnny Clegg and ...

May 07, 2005 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

I am currently listening to Johnny Clegg and Savuka's Cruel Crazy, Beautiful World, which I found in the radio station's impressive library. It reminds me of my siblings' musical influences, which I am still putty to. Work is crazy and has encrouched on ocassional stillness of the weekend, but I'm taking most of next week off for Anna's graduation, so I can't complain.

Hope all is well.

I finally got some sleep last night

May 07, 2005 by Adam in Adam

I finally got some sleep last night. I started zoning out around nine, finally collapsing a bit later. I had made up a bed in the basement as Jamie's dad is in the bed room and I didn't want to wake Jamie up with my coughing.

Sure enough, I did cough a fair amount for the first half of the night. I also woke up when my inflatable mattress mostly deflated, switching my bedding over to pillows from the couch.

I awoke nearly ten hours later, something I almost never do. I don't think I've coughed once so far today.

It's a rather dreary Mocha Friday

May 06, 2005 by Adam in Family

It's a rather dreary Mocha Friday. The ride to work was wet but not unpleasant. I slept poorly again last night, up repeatedly coughing even though I took a bunch of cough medicine. On the plus side, I finished Wonderfalls in the middle of the night. It's a weird quirky show that involves toy animals that talk to a young woman. Hitting the last show right around the witching hour was a cathartic experience.

Sam's last soccer practice was last night. Emma and I went out and tried to cheer him on. Mostly Emma wanted to sit in the car and play with the controls. Sam had a good time, though, and his last game is this Saturday.

The weekend is shaping up to be rather busy. Jamie's entire family seems to be arriving. Brant and Wendy are fixing up their house in hopes of selling it and buying property in Bend. This means that Dave will be out on the streets, so he's looking around for a new place to live.

Jamie's planning Emma's second birthday party for the 28th of this month. It has a princess theme, which Emma seems to really like. Already they've bought endless pink plates, streamers, and tiaras. Ah, the joys of having a girl.

I'm beat

May 05, 2005 by Adam in Adam

I'm beat. I spent most of last night coughing. I'd try to go to sleep, cough myself awake, then go downstairs to watch an episode of Wonderfalls. It's a funny, quirky show, especially when taking cough syrup and exhausted from lack of sleep. Around 1:30 am I collapsed and mostly stayed asleep until 5:30 am or so.

Somehow I'm keeping it together today.

I'm tuckered out today as I was coughing off ...

May 03, 2005 by Adam in Family

I'm tuckered out today as I was coughing off and on during the night. Whatever the kids had this last week has finally come around to me. Jamie got some cough supressant for me tonight, though I think the stuff is incredibly vile.

Jamie worked out and gave the kids to me this morning. We had our usual bagel and wandered around campus enjoying the sun. The kids both seemed in good spirits. Sam is very much looking forward to Mother's Day and Emma's birthday, full of secret plans.

And so another weekend comes and goes

May 02, 2005 by Adam in Family

And so another weekend comes and goes. As predicted it was very busy, as well as being generally pretty fun. Jamie and I caught whatever the kids have, though so far I've only had a sore throat. Saturday we had soccer team photos, a soccer game, and then having Jeff, Sharon, and their kids over for dinner. Sunday we hiked Mount Pisgah, went to my mom's for Easter dinner, and had another soccer game.

Sam was very much the rough and tough young man this weekend. He was feeling lousy and it took some coaxing before he'd play on Saturday. Fortunately he had a great time and scored his first goal. Sunday morning we hiked around and turned over rocks looking for lizards. Sam had a great time, though he complained that I wasn't as strong as Gavin's dad who showed this trick to him last week. Evidently I need to practice my rock tipping in the gym.

Easter dinner at my mom's was it's usual chaotic fun event. The big surprise was that Seraph and Jenny both got tattoos over the last few weeks, unbeknownst to the other. The cousins all played together, running around and getting into trouble. My dad and I chatted long about space ships, movies, and the Internet. Sam had another soccer game in the middle of dinner. After the second quarter it started to pour and we returned soaked. (movie)

Now it's Monday and soon I'll be returning to work, where it'll hopefully be peaceful and calm.

It was really hard getting Sam motivated to g...

April 30, 2005 by Adam in Sam

It was really hard getting Sam motivated to go to his soccer game today. He's had a cough for the last week and keeps having to blow his nose. I gave him a snack right before he left and he just wanted to stay at home.

Still, we showed up and he went out to play. It turned out it was his best game yet. He managed to get his first goal and did a few good blocks as well. Towards the end he perked right up and was very excited about soccer again.

Ah! It's the new ice age, what happened to g...

April 30, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Ah! It's the new ice age, what happened to global warming??? It hasn't broken 58 degrees yet and the salmon aren't spawning in Oregon. The fault of sea lions on ladders according to The Oregonian. I think humans have total screwed the environment and its coming back to haunt us; tsunamis, floods, hurricanes, record cold, ice storms, yikes. I just keep trying to salvage my little peices of ecosystem. Hugs to all, P.

I just got an invitation to E3 by some market...

April 29, 2005 by Adam in Adam

I just got an invitation to E3 by some marketing group, asking to show off some new computer game to me. Out of curiosity I wandered over to their web site and ran across this little ditty:

With our proprietary database of Superconductors, our term for highly influential trendsetters and opinion leaders, we have access to all levels of your audience. Plugging into the Superconductors, TAP can stimulate grass roots buzz and word of mouth, molding the perceptions and attitudes of NetSetters everywhere.

I guess I'm a highly influential trendsetter, presumably from my Neverwinter Nights stuff. Wacky.


April 29, 2005 by Adam in Family

Mmm . . . mocha Friday comes again.

Both kids seem on the mend, though Sam skipped soccer practice last night. Jamie is getting more sleep and she seemed quite cheery last night. That might have been in part to her visit with Victoria and being able to get away for a couple hours.

I had this naive belief that this weekend was going to be quiet. Jamie reminded me that we had two soccer games, guests for dinner, Easter dinner, Jamie helping my mom cook, and assorted house chores. Ah well, hopefully we'll have fun scurrying about.

Both kids have been borderline sick the last ...

April 28, 2005 by Adam in Family

Both kids have been borderline sick the last day or so. Jamie kept Sam out of school. Emma's seemed warm to me and was crankier than usual last nigh. Will it ever end?

The massive machines are out of the basement, so it seems much more quiet and peaceful. The one door that had warped a little has warped back into place. Hopefully we can put this little flooding issue behind us.

It was business as usual at our house yesterday

April 27, 2005 by Adam in Family

It was business as usual at our house yesterday. I returned home to find Jamie exhausted and the kids running around. Sam's got a bad cough that's been lingering for awhile. The carpets are back in place, though we still have one dehumidifier running.

My mom came over, bringing a tasty dinner from the Glenwood. It was great having her around to entertain the kids a bit. After she left I gave everyone a bath. Sam's pretty obviously wiped out as he decided to just go to bed early. Poor kid.

I'm hoping the equipment gets out of our basement today. It's incredibly hot down there and the heat rises up to the top floor. It feels like Summer and I've been sleeping without blankets. Emma was up for a long time last night. She just wouldn't stop talking, rattling on about having a "temperature" and asking Jamie to get the ear thermometer we use. I think she's fine, but also not used to warm nights.

Jamie you were extremely smart! When Will an...

April 27, 2005 by Betsy in Betsy

Jamie you were extremely smart! When Will and Patrick were little, Patrick turned on the bath faucet and flooded the bathroom at Eastcleft. The drawers all buckeled and some had to be replaced. Fortunately I knew the distructive power of water and brought in the fans, dehumidifiers, etc and only had a little mold and buckling of the floors. Accidents happen, don't worry be happy!

We're heading off to Eugene this weekend for ...

April 26, 2005 by Seraph in Cortez

We're heading off to Eugene this weekend for Easter, and I'm getting excited to get out of town! We can't wait to see you all!

Virtually every night for the last couple wee...

April 26, 2005 by Adam in Sam

Virtually every night for the last couple weeks, Sam's been working on "his game". One of my hobbies is to create computer games, primarily using Neverwinter Nights. You can make dungeons, populate it with creatures, and test things out. Sam caught the bug and has been having a good time creating hordes of creatures to do battle with. I've had to help him with the tricky parts, but for the most part it's been his own thing. For someone who claims he can't read, he's done a pretty good job figuring out the fairly complicated toolset.

That's my boy.

I came home last night to large industrial ma...

April 26, 2005 by Adam in Family

I came home last night to large indus