Snopocalypse Friday

February 25, 2011 by Adam in Family

There was no school yesterday, as Eugene got its biannual dusting of snow.  It was very pretty in the morning, with a white blanket of snow covering everything first thing in the morning.  After breakfast, I pushed the kids outside to run about.  Soon they were building a fort with the neighbor kids, like they've done in years past.  It was quite awesome, but had mostly melted by the end of the day.

Joanna and I both worked from home, to mixed success.  I was very productive first thing in the morning, but not so much once the kids were up and around.  Still, everyone seemed to have a good time and the exercise was welcome.  Towards the end of the day, there was much Minecraft, as usual. 

 It was fun having Emma about, and she was excited to work on homework.  Sam did a little extra math, as he needs to catch up with some missing assignments, having been sick for a couple days.  We did manage to take his clay dragon bowl into his art class, which should catch up his Not Complete quite nicely.

Joanna and I had a good time swing dancing Wednesday night, showing off all the new moves we'd learned.  It was pretty empty, though, perhaps because of the weather.  We're foregoing our date tonight to take everyone to Mardi Gras at Duncan's school.  There should be lots of food and games.

I'm guessing tomorrow will involve a library trip and a visit to the grocery store.  We're out of whipping cream.  I also need to get new tires, so hopefully Emma will keep me company at Les Schwab.  My new computer parts arrive next week, ironically right when I leave for my business trip.  Hopefully Joanna will keep them safe.

at the coffee shop

February 25, 2011 by Seraph in Cortez

Wussie snow storm

February 24, 2011 by Sue in Wielesek

Eugene was in a terrible tizzy, with schools closed in the face of impending doom.

I called Adam, and he told me they were snowed in and had been forced to eat the children. However, at one pm, the snow is pretty much melted.

Rocket Wednesday

February 23, 2011 by Adam in Family

I put together a quick video of our rocket making on Monday.  It was quite a lot of fun and it felt good to get outside in the sun.  I suspect I'll miss those sunny skies after tonight, as it's supposed to snow for the next couple days.  Sam's been out sick for the last two days, and with President's Day, he may not go to school at all this week.

Life's been generally good and pleasant the last couple days.  I picked up Sam from Jamie's, gave Emma a hug, and we watched Glee last night. Tomorrow I may end up staying at home, depending on the weather.

30 Second Update

February 23, 2011 by Adam in Family

It's Tuesday already.  I had three days with the kids this weekend, which was deliciously wonderful.  They had yesterday off, so we played with clay, built a vinegar and baking soda rocket, lifted weights, and generally had a good time.

As for the rest of the weekend, we went to the Asian celebration, much to Emma's delight.  Lots of homework was done.  Sam returned from Jamie's on Sunday.  Everyone went to the park to run around, play basketball, and get some energy out.  I made a solo library trip.

The kids are both a little sick today, with Sam staying at Jamie's.  Emma was sounding a little weepy, wanting to know when she'd see me next.  More to come once I find some time to put a video together.

Massive Mocha Friday

February 18, 2011 by Adam in Family

I used up my coffee card, and thus got to order a free mocha.  Since I had a choice, I ordered the biggest possible for maximum deliciousness.

Emma arrived last night, bringing the household excitement to a maximum.  After dinner, I sent Sam to do homework in the kitchen as usual.  He's become an inadvertent role model, as all the other kids wanted to do homework too.  Emma was working away at math in her Beavers cheerleader outfit, taking the workbook to the bath and bed too.  It's amazing that she'd rather convert feet to yards instead of reading a bedtime story.

After the younger kids got to sleep, Sam and Joanna continued to work away at homework while I cleaned up and played a little Minecraft.  They finished up just in time to watch an awesome Glee episode.  Any show that includes songs from Spinal Tap is okay in my book.

The weekend is looming and promises to be exciting.  Tomorrow is the Asian Celebration, opportunities to go to Splash! and the Science Factory, not to mention the usual routines.  I'm trying hard to get Sam to have a friend over, and it looks like my mom is taking him to a movie.  Emma's looking forward to hanging out and doing homework.  Joanna and I are heading to a cupcake place for game night.  Should be fun.

Post Valentine's Day Thaw

February 17, 2011 by Sadie in Sadie & Greg

While today was a balmy 8 degrees, it hasn't snowed for a week and our driveway is half thawed. This picture is from our last big storm on the 2nd that had us shovelling three times a day.

We got our third Moosewood cookbook for Christmas and are spending our free time cooking new soups and such. I think that I'm finally registered into all the college systems, after 6 months of borrowing usernames.  I've won over at least two of our five work study students. Having previously considered myself gregarious and easy to work with, this position has been full of new lessons. My most valued skills seem to be web management, software, and design- totally weird. Either I'm becoming a geek or digital literacy is not as commonplace as I thought. I assumed, incorrectly, that folks with a smart phone glued to their thumbs knew how to both consume AND produce digital information, and that I was the digital luddite. Considering I didn't have the internet when I met Greg, I suspect its his influence.

Midweek Update

February 16, 2011 by Adam in Family

It's been a wild and wacky week, as usual. 

I had a brief moment of panic when I arrived home to see Sam's jacket and backpack on the front bench, but the door was locked and he wasn't inside.  I ran around the house, only to look out and see the lights on in the shed.  I realized that the last time he was locked out of the house, I told him to go there.  Sure enough, the key had gone missing and he did as I asked.  I got him a backup key for his backpack, and am making spare keys soon.

Sam's slowly getting caught up in school, staying up until nearly ten o'clock to finish up his math, reading, and speech.  He's still figuring out how to be organized with the vast amount of work he's getting in middle school, and he's fortunately much improved from the start.  Sam told me that now he doesn't have band, school's pretty good.

Berry's a little under the weather as she got some required vaccinations yesterday.  I think she was achy this morning and I carefully put on her jacket.

Emma's excited about the Asian Celebration this weekend, and we'll likely go on Saturday.  For the last six months, she's kept asking when it's coming next.  I guess it really made an impression.

Valentine's Day Party

February 15, 2011 by Adam in Emma

I had fun visiting Emma's class and helping out for the Valentine's Day party.  I was stationed at the cookie making table, passing out frosting and equitably distributing sprinkles.  The kids were generally pretty excited, and Emma was quite thrilled to see me.

Valentine's Monday

February 14, 2011 by Adam in Family

It's Valentine's Day, which has started out well.  There were presents for all, the new Glee CD for Emma, Minecraft t-shirts for Sam and I, stamps for Berry, and earrings and flowers for Joanna.  Duncan's gift remains a mystery, lost in the flurry of tissue paper.  This afternoon I'm going to Emma's Valentine's Day party at school, which should be fun.

On Friday Joanna and I went out to Chapala's, returning to find Emma and Amber playing Creationary.  Saturday morning was Minecraft and art.  We broke out the Fimo, baking endless little creatures - some normal, some glow-in-the-dark, and some eraser.

Late Saturday morning I met with Jamie to go over the summer schedule and Emma's school.  The general plan seems to be that Sam and Emma would be at my house Saturday through Monday night, and alternating Tuesdays.  We also tentatively agreed to have Emma go to Adams Elementary.  It was a pleasant conversation, and I enjoyed chatting about the kids and how huge they're getting (Emma wears size 10 pants).

Saturday afternoon was play date madness.  Berry and Duncan had their friend Jimmy over.  Emma had Kate.  Due to my two mochas, I had the urge to rearrange the living room.  It turned out pretty well, but there was a point where wires were everywhere, the big TV was on a couch, and I wasn't quite sure how it was going to turn out.  Fortunately it all came together, things were discovered under couches, a tangle of cables was ripped out, and I'm happy with the end result.

Sunday morning was pleasantly lazy.  Joanna, Berry, and Duncan went to church.  Emma and I went to the library, and stopped by a florist in preparation for Valentine's Day.  We hung out and played games until everyone returned. 

Though it was drizzly, we opted to go to the playground for Adams Elementary.  Emma and I both remembered the playground from Sam's many soccer games there.  We ran about maniacally and then returned home for quiet time.  Emma watched Glee, Sam returned to play Portal, and I went off grocery shopping.

The day wrapped up with Joanna and I going to a quick swing dance class, where we learned a dip you probably couldn't do in middle school.  Dinner was pizza and Rough Science.  Sam finished his poster and Emma worked hard on her reading.  She had a hard time sleeping that night, and I eventually fell asleep next to her until woken by Joanna who had gone to put Berry to bed.

Life is happy chaos.

Happy Valentines Day!

February 14, 2011 by Sue in Wielesek

Want you all to know how much I love you. You are much appreciated!

The last couple of days have been busy, busy. Because the parents of Connor Ausland, one of the boys who drowned, live next to Adam and Joanna, when I dropped stuff off at their house last week, I left a note saying that we would be happy to have people use our guest rooms. So when we learned we would have five people last night and four tonight, we decided we'd try to find somewhere else to sleep, at least for last night. I thought that if Lohring were at the coast, we could sleep in his place, but Bob decided he'd stay in Ron's travel trailer. My back up plan was bunking in Jordan's top bunk.

However, when I mentioned this to Stan Honn, he said he thought Campbell House had donated a couple of rooms which wound up not being used. After a couple of phone calls, we had a place to stay in what's a really nice B&B. We left our house guests relaxed, havin' a Bud, and probably secretly relieved that they could just be quiet and together, no matter whether or not Bob and I were appropriately gracious.  And I'm secretly relieved that you kids and grandkids are alive and well.

Much love, Mom/Sue

Mocha Friday

February 11, 2011 by Adam in Family

My Friday mocha is all gone, a happy buzzy propelling me towards lunch.  Work has been an odd mix of crises, mostly resolved at this point.  Still, it's so nice that we finally went live with our Internet site and the time pressure is somewhat relieved.

Emma arrived last night, a joyous bundle of energy and play.  She and her friend Kate have an elaborate Minecraft abode planned out, which they'd penned and colored together.  It's funny how this indie game has reached over a million people, including 2nd grade girls at Crest drive.

The big decision with Emma that's coming up is where to put her for next year after her school closes.  The default is Adams Elementary, with the teachers and students generally going over there.  It's not as close as Edgewood to Jamie, who generally gets her to and from school, so the two of us are talking about it tomorrow.

I'm hoping Emma and I can get in some quality dad/daughter bonding, perhaps over more bike lessons at the park, or making some meals together.  I'm quite fond of that girl.

Sam continues to work away at catching up on his missed assignments.  Last night he made a stamp out of a block of rubber and an X-Acto knife for his art class.  Sam's eye appointment on Wednesday went well, and his prescription hasn't changed much.  That's a good sign, especially considering he's grown so much, and he hopefully won't be as terribly nearsighted as I am.  Sam's off at Jamie's, theoretically until Sunday.

As for me, I'm excited to go out to dinner with Joanna tonight.  This weekend I'm sure there will be the usual laundry and housework and such, but some kid hangout time sounds equally wonderful.  Should be fun.

Midweek Class Change

February 10, 2011 by Adam in Sam

Sam wasn't very interested in his band class, not feeling very capable with the trumpet.  He expressed an interest in choir, as that's something he'd done at Crest for many years.  I put out feelers to see if it were possible, and when Sam arrived Tuesday to his band class, he discovered he'd already been switched.

He seems pretty enthusiastic so far, humming tunes and asking about what certain Spanish words mean.  Evidently one of the songs is entirely in Spanish.

He's also still catching up on missing assignments.  He has four art assignments he needs to finish, and we may need to go get him a block of clay to work on this weekend.

New Vegas

February 09, 2011 by Adam in Adam's Games

Sam and I pooled our money and got Fallout: New Vegas.  It's entirely awesome, and we're having a great time going through the dusty post-apocalyptic wastelands of southwest America.  There's a real western feel to the game so far, and I've cheerfully donned my chaps and cowboy hat to take on the varmints and scoundrels of the wasteland.

Sam's played far more than I have, but I'm still having a good time with my occasional fifteen minutes of play time here and there.

Back to normal??

February 08, 2011 by Seraph in Cortez

Well Robbie & Isa are back to school today (yeah!!).  There are still a lot of places without natural gas, but they must have realized that an angry mob of parents that were going to show up at the capital if they didn't get the kids back to school.  We're still under a state of emergency - not that you'd ever hear about that in the news!

Oh, and thanks for the comments yesterday, we did manage to get groceries without eating any tourists or Texans!

(Here's a picture from Isa's mystery birthday party)

Family Updates

February 07, 2011 by Seraph in Cortez

Well, Robbie and Isa are still out of school.  Hopefully (for my sanity if nothing else) the gas will be restored tomorrow.  I did make Isa do "school work" this morning.  Some math and reading worksheets we found on-line.  Most of Taos and Espanola are closed down, as well as the smaller communities.  We've has snow the last few days, so I continue to be thankful for our big fireplace.  I suppose the nation will persivere, as Texas did find the power to keep the Super Bowl going, even if they couldn't get the electric to the pipelines.

We're heading out to look for an open grocery store, and maybe run some errands if possible.  Love to all!

Subdued Monday

February 07, 2011 by Adam in Family

I'm feeling subdued this morning.  News about the neighbor boy being swept to sea has been slowly working away at my subconscious.  There's a tractor in our sandbox that has "Conner" written on the bottom.  I almost brought myself to go over and give my condolences, but our kids came running out and I felt compelled to play with them in the backyard.  Maybe tonight.

We passed on going out Friday night, as everyone was a little sick.  Sam spent the day and night at Jamie's returning with all his assignments turned in and caught up in everything but his art class.  He may need to stick around after school to wrap things up there.  Saturday morning we went for a library run, Joanna included, and returned with loads of books.  In the afternoon I took all four kids to Autzen Baker Park, running around and throwing rocks off the bridge.

Saturday night we had my mom, Bob, Collette, and Hanni over for dinner, with soup, pizza, and three kinds of delicious desserts that we're still working through.  Afterwards, mom and Bob stuck around to watch Monsters, which ended up as a pretty good low-budget movie.

I was exhausted Sunday morning, as Emma was up the previous two nights.  I broke out the Legos and began sorting them, which everyone played with.  Crepes, sausages, and espresso perked me up adequately.  We mostly stayed at home, doing homework, taking the younger kids for haircuts, and playing about.  Sam and I sprayed and painted the front garden wall.  Joanna and I went to a new swing dance class, learning Charleston moves while my mom watched kids.  Afterward was hamburgers and Doctor Who.  We finally finished Hanni's delicious cream puffs, but only because I ate two.

When my brother died

February 07, 2011 by Sue in Wielesek

I realized that the worst thing which could happen to a parent was to lose a kid. Yesterday afternoon Bob and I were leaving for Richard's birthday fiesta when we saw Linda Honn, looking distraught. Aaron, their son, was nominated as one of the Mr. Axmen contestants. (A fundraiser for the Children's Miracle Network..) All ten contestants had gone to the coast for a weekend retreat and were playing on the rocks at the edge of the ocean. A sneaker wave caught the boys off guard, and two or more were swept into the water.She told us that Aaron was okay, but that a couple of the boys were missing. The Honns were on their way over to Yachats, and we fed the dogs and left a pot of soup. Ironically, the "makings" of the soup were their Christmas gift to us. Later that night, we learned that two of the boys drowned, but their names weren't released. It wasn't until this morning we found out that one of the boys who drowned lived with his parents next door to Adam and Joanna, and his dad is one of my former clients who I'd gotten to know fairly well. We stopped with food and an amaryllis.

A sombre day; our waitress this morning, a South student, was red eyed. Even the Superbowl shoppers at Safeway seemed subdued. Eugene is a small town.

Mocha Friday

February 04, 2011 by Adam in Family

I was needing the caffiene a bit this morning, so I'm glad it's Mocha Friday.  Emma was up quite a bit last night.  Once she said she had a bad dream and another time her stomach hurt.  Everyone is under the weather today, with Sam staying at Jamie's instead of going to school.

Speaking of school, Sam's midterm report card came home and it didn't look very pretty.  There were a lot of missing assignments, which was reminiscent of last term.  I think he has a hard time staying organized, especially when he's sick.  Jamie's going to take him to get his homework after school today, and hopefully get some of his missing assignments.  On the plus side, it looks like Sam can transfer from band to choir.  He hasn't really gotten into the trumpet since he picked it up.

Homework with Sam has been grueling lately.  We were up until ten o'clock Wednesday night and again until nine last night.  I don't remember having quite this much homework in middle school.

Emma arrived yesterday, and was a treat to have around.  She wanted me to make up math problems for her, which she did quite well.  She then wrote a story problem involving units of love and hugs, which she had Joanna work on.

I'm looking forward to a low-key weekend.  Joanna and I canceled our date night tonight, preferring to stay home with the kids and rest.  Tomorrow is our big family dinner.  Sam's at Jamie's until tomorrow morning.  I foresee a lot of Minecraft, homework, and watching movies, though if it's nice I'd love to get outside again.

What the...?

February 03, 2011 by Seraph in Cortez

Well, I guess the energy crisis has begun.  At least in NM.

Robbie & Isa headed out late this morning - 2 hour delays in their district.  Robbie just called to say that school has now been cxl'd due to a natural gas shortage.  Most of the schools in the state are heated with ng, so currently there are about 200 closures in the northern part of the state (ok, not all of these are heat related).  Apparently our state has extensive ng resourses, but no real infrastructure for it (propane and wood are still cheeper heating sources).  Sigh... makes me glad we have a fireplace and warm blankets!

(Yes, that's frost on the inside of our 3" thick front door!)

Silly things on a cold day

February 03, 2011 by Seraph in Cortez

Ok, this was a "must share" with my family:

More Lost and Found

February 02, 2011 by Sue in Wielesek

And an extra pair of men's gray Timberland brand socks.

Wednesday Already?

February 02, 2011 by Adam in Family

The week is moving along at a rapid clip.  Tonight Joanna and I are going out for dinner, maybe using up an Off the Waffle gift certificate.  I'm pondering watching Mosters with Sam, Bob, and my mom tomorrow, as Netflixs should ship it today.

Sam got sick last night, waking up to throw up at three in the morning.  Fortunately he was fine this morning and ate a big breakfast.  He's been relatively cheerful and was excited to tell me that he and his friend Jordan played Magic at lunch yesterday.  Sam's also been quite funny lately.  I can't adequately describe his Human-Dalek hybrid impersonation from Doctor Who.

Duncan got his first homework this week, choosing to forgo playing on the computer so he can do it immediately.  Both he and Berry had a good time with their ballet class.

Life moves along.


February 02, 2011 by Seraph in Cortez

Robbie and I just dug the cars out.  We had 20" of snow over the last 2 days, and it's been really cold out!!  While Robbie & Isa's schools were open yesterday, the highway in front of our house was closed, so they each got a school day.  This morning they had 2-hour delays, so they head out to school in a few minutes.  The problem from living where you work - no snow days here!


February 02, 2011 by Seraph in Cortez

Happy Birthday Destin!!!!  Robbie and I always measure the length of our relationship by your age - 15 years and counting!  Have some fun, as the next 15 will go far too fast.  Luv ya dude.


February 02, 2011 by Sue in Wielesek

Watching an interesting four program series on the space race. The first "man in space" Alan Shepard - 116 miles about the earth. Those familiar early names - remember Chris Kraft, Project Mercury, Friendship 7, and of course, John Glenn's first earth orbit.

I have an extra blue and white cooler after Sadie and Greg's engagement party. It's not Jenny's, and I don't think it's yours, Adam or Yayoe. Lohring, do you think Ana brought food in it?

Birthdays, Bikes, and Buoyancy

February 01, 2011 by Adam in Family

Sunday was wonderfully warm and pleasant.  Emma and I made a leather wrist-band and attached a watch, which she now wears proudly.  Joanna, the younger kids, and I went swimming.  Sam and I walked down to the hardware store to pick up paint, chatting about school and life and video games along the way.  In the afternoon we gardened, ripping out grass tangles.  Emma cleaned up her little garden in preparation for spring.  It was lovely.

I put together a little video of our exploits for the last week.  Joanna's birthday cake ended up getting returned due to dairy-free frosting.  Towards the end, Sam is shown fiddling with a heat-activated coffee drink.  It eventually worked, but we were both saddened that there was no steam shooting out, as promised.

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