Getting Ready

August 31, 2017 by Adam in Family

It feels like a bunch of things are about to happen.  Emma gets her retainer off today.  4J schools start next week, including Emma starting high school.  Sam got his driver's permit yesterday.  This weekend he's planning on riding down to campus and finding all his classes.  I started my new Slate project and apparently I'm the lead developer, whatever that means.

I'm trying to get Emma into Biology next term, something I didn't quite do with Sam.  I met with the head of the science department and got a likely okay if she's up for taking an online geometry class.  I think that might work out okay - I'm happy to help her and she's strangely enjoyed other online classes in the past (such as learning German).

Poor Joanna looked pretty worn out last night.  Duncan and Berry continue to get bigger and more capable, though they still require quite a bit of work.  I think we're going to go babysitter-free this upcoming date night, especially as Sam and Emma will be around.

Guillaume, the french intern staying with my mom, is coming over for dinner tonight.  We chatted over pizza when Joanna was away earlier this week.  Apparently he's really into video games and philosophy, so he and Sam should have much to talk about.

Life feels busy at the moment, but hopefully we'll settle into the new routine in a month or so.

Solo Monday

August 28, 2017 by Adam in Family

With Joanna off fetching the little kids, it was just Sam, Emma, and I this weekend.  Emma got her classes mostly sorted out on Friday, other than a Biology class she wants to take.  I just need to convince the teacher it's a good fit for her.  Sam's classes are similarly ready - philosophy and history for the most part.

Saturday we ran errands, going to the hardware store, bank, school supply shopping, and grocery shopping.  We returned home to collapse for a couple hours, then broke out Overcooked for some crazy cooking co-op gaming.  I snuck in some painting - the stuff I got generally seemed to match the walls.  The day ended in pizza and Rick and Morty episodes.

Sunday morning we headed to Shotgun Creek.  It was pretty empty, but we puttered around and hiked through the woods.  Emma was having issues with her jaw, not able to open her mouth wide, and was pretty unhappy about it.  Eventually it cleared up, but it's something I'd like to get looked at.  We returned home, ate lunch, and Jamie picked up the kids to take to the coast for a couple days.

I was briefly productive, doing laundry, dishes, and tidying up.  Eventually I wore myself out and just watched Netflix until bed.  I heard from Joanna that she'd made it to Niagra Falls with Duncan and Berry.  I think they're generally having a good time and I'll fetch them from the airport tomorrow night.

Mocha Friday

August 25, 2017 by Adam in Family

It's been a relatively quiet week, likely the last of the summer.  Joanna left for Rochester yesterday to fetch Berry and Duncan.  Her trip was long, with an iffy hotel stay, but she reports that there's a gluten free crepe place nearby for breakfast.

Sam's been working away at mom's house, converting an old trunk to a planter box.  He's been returning with scrapes and smelling of metal, though strangely happy with his construct.  He and Isa broke up a few weeks ago, so I'm working on getting a box of miscellaneous stuff back to her.  Sam's been okay, I think, and is looking forward to the start of school.

Emma's classes were posted this week, generally looking good other than Freshman science instead of biology.  She's nervous about the start of school, wanting to get ready and try another bus trip before the first day.  I think she'll be okay after she settles in.

I spent this week on a different project - Leading Wisely instead of Mabel.  It took a frustrating day to figure out all the differences, and I made a bunch of structural updates nearly the first thing.  I kinda felt like I was invited over to dinner and immediately started rearranging furniture, but my coworkers are kind and understanding and I'm starting to make good progress.

Sam, Emma, and I made one of those Blue Apron-like meals last night: Jamacian Jerk chili.  We doubled the recipe and it turned it pretty well.  The most fun was getting everyone chopping and mixing along side me.  I think everyone had fun.

Eclipse Weekend

August 22, 2017 by Adam in Family

It was a quiet weekend, one of the last of the summer.  Friday night Joanna and I went out on a date night downtown.  They had an Art Without Walls event in an open city block.  Between the painters and sculpters they had some poeple bricking up big cubes of plexiglass and steel that were fascinating.  I'm not sure what it meant exactly, but I kept wanting to watch.

Saturday I picked up Emma and she, Sam, and I finished up our video game we've slowly been playing.  The best part was a glitch where spiders would burst from eggs and instead of attacking us would just follow us around until we fought back.  Emma declared them our "spider babies" and yelled at us if we tried to squish them.  The day wound down with pizza and watching Wil Wheaton play a Star Trek game on Tabletop.

Sunday I took the kids out for a hike.  Sam talked about his classes and possibly joining some clubs, scooping up a stick and whacking things like he was two.  Emma was a little reluctant about the hike, but thanked me for making her go after we returned.  She spent the afternoon cleaning her room.  Eventually I took both of them to their mom's house for an overnight eclipse party.

Joanna and I enjoyed our evening alone, continuing our Poldark binge and getting up early Monday morning.  We picked up mom and took back roads to Bellfountain Park, this little county park just within the totality.  The roads were clear and the drive through the country was lovely.  Mom made us stop for coffee and scones, which ended up working out quite well.  Eventually we made it to the park, which only hand a handful of other eclipse watchers.

The eclipse itself was pretty cool.  The temperature dropped as the sun vanished, and crescents appeared on the ground.  The holes in the tree cover acts like pinhole cameras, so it was a neat effect.  Totality was very brief where we were, but Venus appeared in the sky and we had a brilliant moment of seeing the corona around the black disk.  Joanna in particular was amazed at how cool it was.

We wound our way back home, with occasional bad spots in traffic.  I dropped off mom, got Sam from his mom's house, and went to work.  I've started helping another team, and I'm still getting up to speed.  Hopefully today I can actually do something useful.


August 21, 2017 by Sue in Wielesek

At the eclipse with Adam and Joanna and Bellfountain Park.

Mocha Friday

August 18, 2017 by Adam in Family

I'm back from Salt Lake City.  It was a good trip, though I'm glad to be back home.  My lingering cough slowly improved, but I think I got a touch of high altitude sickness along with some of the other travelers from lower altitudes.  It also looks like I'll be shifting my work to another project, potentially a pretty critical one.  I guess that's the price of being useful.

Sam and Joanna managed without me, cooking dinners together.  Sam worked away at my mom's and Joanna pampered herself and hung out with friends.  Thursday had Emma come over and she and Sam made dinner by themselves, much to Joanna's excitement.

Eclipse madness is upon us.  I've got a bunch of viewing glasses ready and I think we're going to try to sneak up north to the full eclipse zone Monday morning.  I've already warned my coworkers that I may not be very available.  Hopefully the traffic isn't too crazy - we plan on sticking to back roads and not going into the full path of the eclipse.

Summer feels like it's winding down.  Joanna leaves next Thursday to Rochester.  I've got some last minute things to get kids ready for school.  The insanely hot weather is finally getting normal again.  All is well.

Cool Weekend

August 14, 2017 by Adam in Family

It was the first weekend in awhile that wasn't insanely hot.  My annoying cough continued, but I still managed to enjoy it as much as I could.  Saturday I played a little more Eon Altar with Sam and Emma.  That afternoon Sam and I went on a bike ride, meeting up with Joanna at Alton Baker Park.  It was Pride weekend, so Sam and I read books while surrounded by hundreds of fabulous people.  The evening wrapped up with pizza and a documentary about the cuban missle crisis.

Sunday morning the kids and I did art projects while watching Rick and Morty.  The extent of my talent is cutting out funny pictures from comics I saved from Free Comic Book Day, then gluing it to Emma's art containers.  Hopefully she cherishes them forever.

While Joanna worked away, I took the kids up to this funny back street behind Moon Mountain, then walked up towards the top.  The unused path was covered in mint and surrounded by unpicked blackberries, ripe and delicious.  It was strangely magical and I told the kids about doing this in the 80's.  Pete Nosler and I made this system of challenges, one of which was to take a pebble from the base to the top of Moon Mountain.  When we got to the top, the kids and I dutifully placed our pebbles at the top.

Mid-Week Update

August 11, 2017 by Adam in Family

I got a funny alert from Microsoft about trouble with PeaceHealth accounts.  I guess I'll never fully escape from my old job.  I'm only tangentially involved with security these days - mostly building security systems rather than monitoring networks.  I had fun making a little application that runs in the cloud yesterday - we'll see if it ends up being officially part of the product I'm working on.

Sam's been working for my mom all week, returning tired and sweaty.  Today I dropped Emma off this afternoon and she got put to work as well.  Joanna continues to work on her books, asking various writers in the industry for endorsements and working on her book proposals.  Lots to do.

The big news yesterday was our ductless heat pump installation.  It took all day but the upper two floors of the house are now nicely cooled and heated in a hopefully more efficient way.  It certainly is cooler and quieter than the air conditioning.

I'm off to Salt Lake City next week.  I'm also debating if I want to try to go further north to see the eclipse.  My latest plan is to try and take back roads to get a little north of Junction City.  Hopefully I can miss most of the insanity and still see the total eclipse.

Quiet Weekend

August 06, 2017 by Adam in Family

It's been a generally quiet weekend.  Emma is crashed out on the couch, feeling a little under the weather.  Sam is downstairs reading his book for the U of O.  I'm puttering with Unity, pondering making a new game.  I seem to constantly get distracted, though I sometimes miss my development days.

Friday night was just Sam and I.  Sam made stir fry for us while I cleaned the kitchen.  Afterward I watched him play Isaac while eating cereal, one of my favorite activities.  With Emma at her mom's, the little kids at their dad's, and Joanna in Portland for her writer's conference, it made for a quiet evening.

Saturday morning I started staining the balcony before Sam awoke and we made breakfast.  Then we stained the railings while discussing veganism, capitalism, and philosophy.  He expressed an interest in becoming vegan, as long as he didn't cause too much trouble.  Later we went food shopping and picked up assorted vegan food for him to try.

Emma arrived and the three of us played Eon Altar a little more.  Isa arrived and we wrapped up the day with pizza and Adventure Time.

Today has been equally quiet.  I listened to NPR and finished staining the bulk of the deck.  Sam and I made vegan pancakes and tofu scramble, which seemed generally acceptable.  Emma's stomach has been bothering her, so she didn't each much.

Isa left, Sam climbed a ladder to finish staining some weird parts, and the three of us went to Hendrick's park to play frisbee and walk around.  Now we're having a somewhat lazy afternoon.  Joanna should arrive momentarily - it'll be nice to see her and settle back into the routine.

Back from Portland

August 04, 2017 by Adam in Family

Sam, Emma, and I just got back from our whirlwind Portland family reunion.  It was great seeing everyone.  We stayed in this place on trendy Alberta street that Sam described as "the most Portland place I've ever stayed."  Perhaps it was the tricycle chandelier or the hipster artwork.  Half of us were in one house and half in the other - it was a little far apart, but we generally managed okay.  Emma told me upon our return that it was the best family vacation yet, so at least someone had a good time.

Other than having way too much fun playing with Simon, we went to Powell's bookstore, visited the Portland Art Museum, and got ice cream at Salt and Straw.  Mostly we chatted, played games, and ate our way through the week.  It was pretty hot, with temperatures over 100 degrees.

Joanna's off to a writer's conference this weekend.  Sam and I have a deck to stain.  Emma's off to her mom's house tomorrow, leaving us two boys to hold down the fort.  I'm back to work tomorrow, back to writing code from my backyard shed.

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