The weekend is coming to a close, here in thi...

December 31, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend is coming to a close, here in this very quiet house. Jamie took the kids to the beach house. She wanted to check up on things at Judy's request, as well as get out of the house while she's watching the kids. I'll ring in the New Year's alone, which I don't mind terribly. It's been awhile since I've chatted up a cute girl in hopes of getting a midnight kiss, especially as Jamie goes to bed early.

I was under the weather on Friday with the cold that's been going around, finally feeling better tonight. Sam and I went for a long bike ride down the Amazon trail and through the city streets. He was nervous at first, but had a great time after he got into the swing of things.

Today Jamie and I went to the U of O Art Museum while Sierra watched the kids. It was great to get out with Jamie and do grown up things together. It's such a rarity these days, yet so important.

Tomorrow it's off to work, hopefully for a quiet, low-key day. I might take Tuesday off, if only to get paid for being on call during the day.

It's well into my Mocha Friday

December 28, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's well into my Mocha Friday. I've managed to obtain four separate Starbucks gift cards, totalling around $50 worth of coffee. I'm half tempted to slap them down on the counter and tell them to line up shots of espresso, downining them one after the other, cowboy-style. Or maybe not.

Jamie and Emma are sick today. I was really wanting to take the kids swimming after many weeks, but that may just not happen. I'd also like to go bike riding with Sam this weekend. We'll see how it goes.

Josh is with me at work today, learning about being a computer programmer. I don't think I've dissuaded him yet, even after answering various e-mails and supplying running commentary about particular vendors. The fun never stops around here.

Christmas at my mom's house was very nice

December 27, 2007 by Adam in Family

Christmas at my mom's house was very nice. At the end of the engagement, Jenny, Darin, and Robbie were sleeping in the living room among the piles of presents and wrapping paper. It was a typical event at my mother's, with food and conversation non-stop. I had a good time catching up with Seraph in the kitchen and hogging the phone with Sadie. Poor Jenny was sick, so our holiday conversation was reduced to a series of groans.

We briefly returned home before going over to Yayoe's for dinner. There was way too much great food, which was fortunate as we took some home. Yesterday for lunch Emma was eating the rice and tofu wraps with chopsticks at the table.

Yesterday involved us hanging out with our smaller family. While we love all you extended family folks, it's admittedly nice to just have some quiet time at the house. Jamie went briefly to work, and I did a library trip, but otherwise we played with the horde of presents and took it easy.

I got the "Forbidden Lego" book at the library, so Sam and I had to build one of the plans in there. It took way too long and we had to seriously improvise a few pieces, but at the end of the day, it actually worked pretty well. Since we didn't have the multiple Lego motors for the full-auto rubber band shooter, we went with the paper airplane launcher. The trigger is still a bit tricky, but you can wind up the rubber band and launch your plane, usually without putting out an eye. Pretty cool.

Emma and I drew on her aqua doodle a bunch, and she carried around the diary Jenny got her all day long. Since she's been practicing her letters at school, she wants to write whenever she's home too.

At the end of the day, Sam and I took the bike to the park where he proceeded to get way too muddy and practice the new style of brakes. I think the new bike is a hit and we'll try to do a longer trip next weekend.

As for today, I'm back at work, but strangely working at home. I figure I'll take a shower, as Josh is coming to mentor with me as part of his school homework. It seems he wants to go to the U of O and study computer science, and it's up to me to give one last ditch effort to dissuade him. Maybe I can spend the day checking e-mail and playing solitaire.

Merry Christmas, all! We had a great time in...

December 25, 2007 by Adam in Family

Merry Christmas, all! We had a great time in Portland, very low-key. Yesterday Sam and I watched a couple movies while Judy entertained Emma and Jamie went to her dad's house.

This morning the kid's opened Ray's presents that Jamie had picked up while visiting her dad. I made breakfast, pancakes for the kids and blueberries loosely stuck together with pancake batter for myself. Afterwards the kids proceeded to play some elaborate game in the basement, giving Jamie and I a rare chance to chat over coffee. It was quite nice.

Happy Christmas Eve

December 23, 2007 by Adam in Family

Happy Christmas Eve.

We're in Portland, being lazy. Emma's entertaining everyone with questions like "Have you been anywhere, like Africa?" There's a Christmas party later today, which we're leisurely moving towards.

Sam and I started a game of Risk, which he was pretty excited about. Jamie and I went out to a sushi place for dinner. We rented movies, which should fortify us against the dreary weather.

It's Mocha Friday, made even tastier by the f...

December 21, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, made even tastier by the fact that it was free. I got some card from the CEO with a Starbucks gift certificate for working on some project months ago. I've also decided that "happy" and "sad" are merely illusions, with the reality being a measure of how much caffiene is in my system. Needless to say, I'm feeling fairly perky at the moment. It's been a busy week, with lots of events happening every night. I've been a bit frazzled, expressing my frustration that Jamie and I seem to be meeting at the front door as she's going off to one place or another. Hopefully things will settle down fairly soon. The kids both did their music programs. Sam's was at school, which I missed but Jamie recorded. Emma's was in the evening, which we all went to. I was especially proud of Emma, who was nervous but went up anyway. Afterwards she had a minor meltdown, mostly because it was getting really late. I had the kids to myself last night, and they were both pretty good. We played in the basement, doing several rounds of Simon Says before moving on to I Spy. Sam played Super Mario Galaxy, his emotions going from excitement to dispair depending on the challenge level. Emma and I did projects, gluing, cutting, and making things out of pipe cleaners. Eventually Jamie got home and we all opened Dorothy's presents that had arrived that day. My favorite part of the evening was giving Emma a bath and having Sam come and show off his magic tricks. He kept getting frustrated because it didn't work well, but I kept him laughing with my silly audience antics. I gave him some useful suggestions, such as covering up a mistake by pointing away and saying "Look over there, away from my groin!" Such things are high humor among the 3rd grade crowd.

What a weekend

December 17, 2007 by Adam in Family

What a weekend. I'm exhausted just thinking about it.

Saturday I went to the library and ran errands, took Sam bowling at a friend's birthday party, and in the evening we did our Christmas cocktail party. It ended up being quite fun, with a lot of laughing adults playing Trivial Pursuit. What was amazing is that our neighbors Todd and Victoria knew the diameter of the Alaska pipeline as they were recently discussing it at breakfast.

This morning Jamie went to work and I took the kids out to pick out a Christmas tree. Emma chose one and Sam cut it down with a saw. Then we waited for Jamie to return so we could decorate. I was fairly grumpy, probably because I wasn't feeling very well. I actually took a nap this afternoon, which is pretty unusual.

I did feel more reasonable after my nap and everyone begged to open presents early. Jamie's justification was that we were going to Portland next weekend, but I think she's just impatient.

Sam got a new bike, Emma got a ton of Littlest Petshop goodies, and Jamie got cashmere. Emma seemed to enjoy her mp3 player quite a bit, and Sam and I played games with the big exercise ball in the basement. There were also a couple Wii games in the mix that Sam and I played together for a bit.

Now we have a school and work day ahead. Back to the grindstone.

It's Mocha Friday and it should hopefully be ...

December 14, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday and it should hopefully be a relatively calm day at work after a week of general nuttiness. I have some server administration and interfaces waiting for me. A little research, a little button clicking, and I'll be earning my keep.

The last of the Christmas presents have arrived, I think. I have some wrapping to do yet. I've spoiled both the kids at this point. We had several long debates about when to have our family Christmas and I think it'll be the Saturday morning before we go to Portland. Mostly I'm looking forward to the kid's faces, not to mention playing with their toys.

Sam was supposed to get his glasses yesterday, so hopefully they'll arrive today. He's been pretty excited about getting them.

Last night Jamie and I had a brief date while the kids were at Dave's house. We played cards at the kitchen table and gabbed. Afterwards we practiced swearing to make sure we remembered how to do it.

In terms of the weekend, Sam has a bowling birthday party tomorrow. There's the cocktail party tomorrow night. Hopefully we can go swimming with the kids sometime too. Life's busy, but fun, as usual.

The weekend has come and gone and we're alrea...

December 11, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend has come and gone and we're already well into the week. Not much happened over the weekend. The kids were feeling tired and maybe a little sick, so we didn't go swimming. We rode bikes on Saturday, with Sam going all the way around the park several times. Emma mostly stayed in the tennis courts until it got too cold and she wanted to go home. Jamie went to decorate Christmas trees with Pat and his wife.

Sunday it seemed we all lazed about. I didn't shave or leave the house once. Emma had a friend over for a play date. Sam and I worked on his grand Lego city. I got the kids a Lego advent calendar, which has become this exciting thing for them each morning. I think it has inspired Sam, and even Emma gets into the action on occasion.

We have Fencing tonight. Sam theoretically gets his new glasses in a day or two. We're hosting a Christmas party for assorted friends this Saturday. Fun, fun.

It's Mocha Friday and I just downed the last ...

December 07, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday and I just downed the last of the delicious elixir moments ago. I think we have a fairly low-key weekend ahead of us. Hopefully I can get the last of my Christmas preparations done, or at least take a big bite out of them.

It's been a pretty uneventful week. Tuesday was Sam's first day of fencing lessons. He was so excited that he made himself a foil out of plastic arrow shafts, duct tape, and part of a plastic pirate hook hand. What's amazing is that it makes a great practice foil, light and generally the right size. I'm somewhat excited about doing some fencing myself, so we were practicing our footwork and stances in the basement. Days later, we were still sore.

Emma's been singing this funny song that mixes Hanukkah and the 12 days of Christmas. She's also been pretty tired this week, probably due to long days at school. She gets pretty tuckered out at the end of the day.

Jamie seems in good spirits, now that everyone's on the mend and the kids are back in school. She's been fixing us great dinners and planning a cocktail party for friends.

As for tonight, I'd like to get back into the swimming routine and visit the library tomorrow. We might take a short Bend trip over the holidays. I'd also like to take time off to hang out with the family. Fun, fun.

We had a great weekend, busy but satisfying

December 03, 2007 by Adam in Family

We had a great weekend, busy but satisfying. Friday night Jamie and I went out on the town, checking out a new, hip restaraunt while Dave and company entertained the kids. On Saturday Sam and I rode bikes along the river path while Emma went to a birthday party. Saturday night we went to Barbara and Zoltan's house, who plied us with amazing food and our kids played together.

Sunday was relatively quiet. I watched the kids while Jamie went hottubbing with Angie. We played all sorts of games and started to decorate the house with Christmas goodies. The afternoon was mostly lazy quiet time, as no one wanted to venture out into the extremely soggy storm outside.

Danica sent along her pictures from Thanksgiving. They made me hungry and miss everyone.

Mocha Friday

November 30, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. I'm not quite there yet, though its lure will be getting me into the shower momentarily.

It's been a rough week, with lots of illness and running about. Yesterday I went to work and then got a call from Jamie letting me know it was my turn to watch a sick Emma for the day. I tried to keep an eye on her as well as do work remotely, which is always a bit stressful.

Emma and I headed out to 5th Street to fritter the time away. I had a mocha and Emma had steamed milk with vanilla. She drew, I read. Eventually we did a little Christmas shopping until I realized she wasn't really up for it. For the rest of the day we stayed at home, other than a brief trip to the park when the rains momentarily broke. By the time Jamie returned from the gym and showered by six that night, I was pretty wiped out.

We have some interesting things happening this weekend. Emma has a birthday tomorrow and Sam and I plan on riding our bikes by the river. We also have a dinner at Barbara and Zoltan's house, which is always entertaining. I have more Christmas project work to do, though I'm feeling pretty good about my overall progress. Most of the gifts have been purchased and now I'm working on my typical presents for everyone. Busy, busy.

My kids are awesome

November 29, 2007 by Adam in Family

My kids are awesome.

At the moment, they're playing some elaborate game with ever-changing rules. Just a moment ago, Sam ran by with Emma on his back. He was making screeching noises and Emma was zapping imaginary creatures with a blaster. They've been going at it for an hour.

I feel greatly improved from last night, when I not only was knocking on heaven's door, but ringing the doorbell and peeking through the mail slot. Yet again I was reminded just how bad throwing up sucks, along with the inability to swallow pain pills. Fortunately I got to blissful unconsciousness around seven o'clock and woke up at three the next morning feeling almost normal. I made it to work, a bit late, and felt greatly elated from the lack of blinding pain.

Other than that little speed bump, life is going fairly well. Thanks to Amazon, I think nearly all of my Christmas shopping is done. Seraph and Robbie hopefully got their birthday gift certificates (let me know if this one didn't go through). I didn't completely spoil the children, but I got pretty close. Fun, fun.

The four-day weekend extravaganza is finally ...

November 26, 2007 by Adam in Family

The four-day weekend extravaganza is finally coming to a close. It's hard to know where exactly to begin, as so much happened. Probably the most happy news is that I finally feel better, as do Jamie and Sam. After not eating for most of a week, he cheerfully munched down pizza and applesauce as normal. Sadly it looks like Emma might be getting the sniffles. Poor girl.

On Thanksgiving I went over to my mom's house in the afternoon, leaving the kids with Jamie and her family. I loved chatting with my sisters in the kitchen, though Sadie's absence was sadly noticed. There was lots of food and conversation, which I think is my version of Heaven.

Friday was Thanksgiving with Jamie's side of the family. It began with a big red N stuck in our window, and the kids dressing up in Nebraska outfits. Of course, we won't actually mention the football game itself, but the result wasn't for lack of spirit from our family members. Food followed, along with more presents for Sam. The evening wrapped up with some non-stop Transformers, along with some dirty glances from Jamie as we edged near the kids' bedtime.

Saturday was our relaxation day. Since no one was feeling good, there was a lot of movie watching. The only exercise we got was playing boxing on the Wii. Today I've got "Wii back" from frantically punching.

Today was the party, and the preparation for it. I raked leaves while Emma dug for worms and Jamie went to the store. We did a lot of playing in the basement. The party itself was a big success, renting out a swimming pool and splashing away the afternoon.

Now we're all tuckered out and getting ready for return to our normal routine tomorrow.

It's Mocha Wednesday for me, and a busy one a...

November 21, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Wednesday for me, and a busy one at that. Sam's home sick today and I'm at work, but coughing away. As a measure of recovery, I managed to sleep through the night and only woke up for a few minutes with my coughing.

The Thanksgiving festivities start tomorrow. I think I'm making bread both days. It would be also nice to take it easy for awhile, though we'll see how much R&R I can manage on this holiday and birthday weekend.

Everyone's still sick

November 20, 2007 by Adam in Family

Everyone's still sick. I've been waking up coughing the last few nights. All Sam ate yesterday was a milkshake and other fluids. Jamie's sniffling about and generally tired. Only Emma seems her usual self.

Last night the kids and I made pirate swords, pistols, and a hat with a skull and crossbones on it. Hearing Emma say "Yaar, matey" is quite inspirational.

I'm hoping that everyone is on the mend this ...

November 18, 2007 by Adam in Family

I'm hoping that everyone is on the mend this morning. Both kids got very little sleep Friday night, and so both were very tired yesterday. Emma was wacky, crying at everything, and eventually took a long nap. Sam was quiet and watched a couple movies. I dosed them with Advil and got them to bed early. Now they seem in pretty good shape.

Jamie went off to a chocolate tasting party at Sharon's house, and then later to pizza at Pat's. I'm still sick, so it was almost fortunate the kids were too. They mostly wanted to sit around and watch shows. We did have a fun half hour before bedtime, taking turns shooting Nerf darts into ceilings, windows, and whatever.

I'm trying to arrange for a breakfast outing. The thought of good coffee and tasty pancakes is greatly appealing.

Well, it's Mocha Friday

November 16, 2007 by Adam in Family

Well, it's Mocha Friday. I ended up making my own mocha as I'm home sick today. I had to break a date with my mom, which was disappointing. Theoretically some consultants were coming in to work today and I was going to train them, but I'm certainly not up for it.

I don't feel horrible as long as I'm properly medicated, just sniffling and coughing all over the place. I've been waking up in the middle of the night the last couple nights when the Advil wore off, eating cereal and watching the t.v. show Chuck. I've also been sleeping on the guest bed in the craft room so Jamie avoids my tossing and turning.

The kids were very sweet to me last night. When Emma found out I was sick, they made a little bed for me to lie down and be taken care of. Of course, that game didn't last long, but it was the thought that counted. Soon enough they were playing pretend, lost in the desert. I was narrating their adventures, which ranged from making a shelter out of couch cushions, to finding food and water, and finally fending off wild animals. Fortunately they had a bath later, in part to wash off all the claw marks which they created using red washable pens.

As for today, I'm going to try and take it easy for a change. I've got laundry going and I might head over to the library. Otherwise I hope to lounge about and do things to take my mind off being sick.

Back home

November 13, 2007 by Adam in Family

Back home. We had some brief excitement when they thought we might have our Eugene flight redirected to Portland due to winds. Fortunately all went smoothly and we're getting unpacked and ready for normalcy tomorrow morning.

I wrote down journal entries on actual paper while we were on the trip. I typed it all up and added some choice photos to each of the postings below.

I woke up early, went down to the lobby, and ...

November 11, 2007 by Adam in Family

I woke up early, went down to the lobby, and started writing down this little journal. Suddenly, loud fire alarms went off and dozens of people in their pajamas streamed out. The front desk people confirmed it was a false alarm, so I ran up to tell Jamie. They were still fast asleep, so I left them there.

Sam slept in until eight, unfortunately waking up with an itchy, puffy face. He was briefly unhappy, but the allergic reaction mostly cleared up. It's still itchy today, but not too bad. We went to Downtown Disney for breakfast. It was basic, but good. Since the restaurant was a bakery, I had the French toast. Coupled with coffee, it hit the spot.

Once we got to Disneyland, we dropped off Sam's hat to get embroidered, picked up Fast Pass tickets, and hopped on the Mark Twain riverboat. It was slow and leisurely, a perfect ride for everyone.

The boys and girls split up again, Emma had her face painted pink with swirls and glitter, and Sam and I went on Thunder Mountain and then Splash Mountain. The first was a western-themed roller-coaster and Sam thought it was the best ride in the park. The second was an odd mix of water slide and Briar Rabbit animatronic scenes, with a gut-wrenching drop at the end. Sam wasn't very happy with it.

Next was the California Adventure, with lunch first on the agenda. We ended up in a bakery, eating chili and chowder out of bread bowls. Emma had fun feeding the seagulls and ducks that hung out at the San Francisco themed wharfs.

We took Jamie to the vineyard for wine tasting and then circled around the boardwalk. I stood in line forever to buy ice cream for the kids and then Jamie and Sam went to Soaring Over California, which was my favorite ride. Emma and I played around the aviation area and posed with the characters from Cars. When we reunited, it was late in the day. We went back to our hotel for quiet time and early bet.

We used our early pass today and got to the p...

November 10, 2007 by Adam in Family

We used our early pass today and got to the park at seven in the morning. Our first ride was Finding Nemo, the revamped 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea ride. Emma, again, was scared. Poor girl.

Jamie wanted to do the Pirates of the Caribbean ride with Sam, so I watched Emma in a nearly empty New Orleans square. We reunited and the park filled up with people. We hit a few more rides, such as Indiana Jones, which was fast and bumpy. Emma and Jamie went on the Small World ride, which she enjoyed. Emma also stood in line to meet a princess, finally deciding she'd rather go to Toon Town again. We puttered around Tomorrowland and took the monorail to Downtown Disney.

Downtown Disney was completely new to me, a section of shops and restaurants. We ate at a Mexican restaurant and then hit up the Lego store. The kids were amazed by the huge Lego sculptures and they both left with assorted Lego goodies.

Afterwards Jamie took Emma back to the hotel for quiet time while the boys headed for California Adventure. That park was also new to me, taking features of California history and turning them into rides, shops, and restaurants.

We wandered about, seeing the sights, and Sam declared he wanted to go on the Grizzly River Rafting Company ride. A sign warned we might get soaked, but we scoffed at danger and had fun going down the rapids. We wondered about the sign, as we were merely sprinkled, when a geyser erupted at the last minute and were got soaked to the bone.

We spent another hour drying off and seeing the sights. I liked looking at the architecture, from the recreation of an old boardwalk to a surprisingly clean Fisherman's Wharf. Finally we did the Soaring Over California ride, which was quite amazing. They lifted our seats off the ground into a huge half-dome screen, playing movies of flying over California. Afterwards, we returned to the hotel.

I was exhausted and had a bit of a headache, so I collapsed for an hour. For dinner we went to Downtown Disney, which was very crowded, but fortunately the place we went to had great food. That night everyone went to bed early and got lots of sleep.

We woke up, ate breakfast, and headed out the...

November 09, 2007 by Adam in Family

We woke up, ate breakfast, and headed out the door. While the hotel I chose was technically across the street from Disneyland, the park entrance was a good quarter mile around the block.

Our first ride was the train, which we took halfway around the park. After that was a blur of rides, people, and sights. Emma liked Toon Town, and got Minnie's autograph. The kids ran around trying all the silly doorbells and running through the houses. Sam, dad, and I stood in line twenty minutes to get seated on the Indiana Jones ride, only to have it canceled and we were sent out. We did Star Tours, which didn't impress Sam. Both kids liked the teacups, a long time favorite. Emma was scared by the Tiki Room and the Jungle Cruise. We took Sam on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride and he thought it was pretty cool.

We did indeed eat at the Blue Bayou restaurant, which looked like a nighttime New Orleans swamp. You could also see people from the Pirates of the Caribbean ride go by and periodically scream in the distance. The food was really good, especially after eating some of the more fast food in the park.

Afterwards we did the Haunted Mansion while my dad watched Emma. It was strangely unscary, having been given a Nightmare Before Christmas makeover. We wandered around a bit more, then headed home to swim at the hotel and get to bed early.

I had carefully booked flights that minimized...

November 09, 2007 by Adam in Family

I had carefully booked flights that minimized travel time, along with keeping the travel between late morning and early afternoon. Because of this great foresight we were able to eat a leisurely breakfast and drop off some library books on the way to the airport.

Trouble began when I found it hard to get a parking space. We ended up far away in row F (which led to some lovely mnemonics to aid finding our car later). Next when we got to get our tickets, the computer immediately told us our flight was delayed, we wouldn't make our next flight, and there were no more flights that day.

Fortunately the airline people talked to us calmly, told us to ignore the machine, and got us on a flight that was merely a few hours late.

I dug out Sam's early birthday present, Phantom Hourglass, the latest Zelda game for the Nintendo DS. He was enamored and spent every free moment playing.

The flights themselves were fine. Since it was the first the kids could remember, they had a great time looking out the window. In San Francisco we peeked out at the famous hills and I talked about their historical significance in 70's cop show car chases. Emma made friends with an English girl named Jessica. We met up with them again on the bus to our hotels. They were very cute together and Emma whispered to Jamie that they spoke a different language.

We made it to our hotel, tired but happy. A quick call to my dad assured him all was well and we made plans to meet for breakfast the next day.

We're going to Disneyland today

November 08, 2007 by Adam in Family

We're going to Disneyland today. The kids seem excited, though when we ask Emma, she says that Disneyland makes her a little shy.

I think we're all packed and ready to go. With luck, the hotel will have an internet connected computer and I can give everyone updates from the happiest place on earth (according to the brochures).

The week is chugging along

November 06, 2007 by Adam in Family

The week is chugging along. Given that we're leaving on Thursday, I guess we're halfway through.

Last night I took Sam out for another bike riding practice session. He's getting pretty confident and we made some bike adjustments to make things easier for him. Now he's trying more challenging tasks, such as going up and down hills. Fun, fun.

Poor Emma had a touch of a fever yesterday, so we gave her a bath and put her in PJs. Jamie was an excellent mom, reading her stories until her throat was raw. Kiera, an older friend of Emma's, gave her a stuffed giraffe and new Barbie movie, which she completely adored.

The weekend has come and gone

November 05, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend has come and gone. It was a very full one, with dinners, brunches, and all manner of activities. Sam was horribly excited that he learned to ride his bike on Saturday. I also took the kids to a marathon swimming session on Sunday for nearly two hours.

We're coming to the realization that we're heading to Disneyland in just a few more days. Soon my life-long dream of eating at the Pirates of the Caribbean restaurant will be complete.

Happy Mocha Friday

November 02, 2007 by Adam in Family

Happy Mocha Friday. It's long gone, though I still have that delicious caffiene/chocolate glow.

Emma got a glowing bracelet during Trick or Treating, which amazingly still glowed slightly. Bath time turned into a new "Diving in Darkness" game where they'd turn off the lights, toss the glowstick under the water, and then try to find it. Sam was so excited for Emma to get out of the bath and try it himself that he gave up having Jamie read Little House on the Prarie to him.

Everyone seems to be doing well and we've got a fairly busy weekend ahead of us. Tomorrow Emma has ballet and a birthday party. Sunday we have dinner at my dad and Yayoe's house, going over our Disneyland plans next week. Fun, fun!

Halloween has come and gone

November 01, 2007 by Adam in Family

Halloween has come and gone. The kids had a great time, returning with the traditional bag of sugary goodness. In an odd way, the candy was secondary to the whole dressing up experience. Sam really liked his outfit and was happy with the positive reaction he got out of people. Emma really wanted to pass out candy to the people who came to the door.

My mom came by and took a picture of everyone. I think we need more group portraits like this one. I posted a bigger, different version here.

The week is wrapping up as well, our last before the grand Disneyland trip. After feeling under the weather earlier this week, I was frantic with activity yesterday. I got so much done at work, I surprised even myself. Weird.

Happy Halloween to all

October 31, 2007 by Adam in Family

Happy Halloween to all.

We've had a rough last couple days. On Monday, I ended up sending both kids to their room for not cleaning up. There was a funny moment in the kitchen where Jamie asked politely for a timeout too.

Last night I ended up sick and miserable. Copious amounts of Advil finally made me better, but I felt pretty horrible for awhile. Sam informed me that he didn't like it when I was sick, as it was boring. Jamie kept shooing me away, not wanting me to try and help with the kids. Emma, being the sweet girl that she is, made me a little bed in the play room and made me lie down.

I feel much improved today. I'm going to see if I can go into work a little late and help with Sam's hair. He's theoretically becoming an 80's punk rocker with pink hair and spikes. Should be fun.

It's a lazy Sunday afternoon

October 28, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's a lazy Sunday afternoon. Jamie is upstairs chatting away with her dad and Joanne. Sam's playing Portal with Josh. Dave and Emma are chatting away in the tent. It's weird having a little time to myself.

Friday night was swimming as usual. Emma was a swimming maniac, going halfway across the pool by herself. Needless to say, both kids were exhausted at the end of the evening.

I took Emma to ballet on Saturday, then visited Humble Bagel. We got way too many books at the library, headed home, and watched a show. Sam headed off to an insanely elaborate Harry Potter themed birthday. Emma and I went out again, this time to play with her friend Etta at the park.

We did a massive cleanup this morning, and now are enjoying the fruits of our labor.

Happy Mocha Friday to all

October 26, 2007 by Adam in Family

Happy Mocha Friday to all. We got our first frost of the season, making me realize that I don't have an ice scraper for my new car. The full moon was up as well. I stood in stunned awe just staring at it, until I realized that my code wouldn't write itself at work.

Sam and Emma played so well last night. Sam eschewed all video games and instead built forts and did other wacky things with his sister. I was almost bored watching them as they were clearly doing their own thing.

It's swimming tonight, as usual, along with ballet in the morning for Emma. Sam has a Harry Potter themed birthday tomorrow and on Sunday Jamie, Ray, and Sam are going to hear big band music. I haven't decided what I'll do with Emma. I should probably think of some treat or another for just the two of us.

The week continues to move along

October 25, 2007 by Adam in Family

The week continues to move along. At work, I've been chatting with consultants a fair amount. I'm also redoing some of my older web applications, cringing at how ancient they are. I'm strangely looking forward to sitting down and writing some more code today.

Jamie went off with Emma during her school to pick up pumpkins at a little farm in Springfield. Carving the bumpy gourd was the most challenging. Emma got all excited when I suggested a chain saw, but I ended up using a hack saw to take off the top. In the end, it turned out fairly well.

Dave came by last night to play with the kids for a little. Jamie and I watched the last episode of Mad Men for the season. It's brilliant and sad and epic, as usual. I continue to be amazed at how much can change in a generation.

Soccer is over

October 23, 2007 by Adam in Family

Soccer is over. Sam and I hiked Spencer's Butte and then went off to his last game Sunday afternoon. Though it wasn't raining, he managed to wallow in mud and return home without a dry stitch on. I got him showered, combed, and we celebrated with the other kids and parents at a pizza party.

The girls made it back safe and sound from Portland. Emma brought back a Princess scrap book, which she's been playing with the last couple days. Jamie felt vaguely guilty at the gifts showered upon Emma and bought some socks for Sam. Of course, they were pirate-themed socks, which unfortunately don't fit me.

The week has been chugging along. Emma's school is going to a pumpkin patch today. Sam's getting out early. Busy, busy.

It's Sunday morning and Sam is cheerfully pla...

October 21, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Sunday morning and Sam is cheerfully playing with Legos next to me. I think he's reenacting scenes from a video game.

It's been a quiet weekend without the girls. Friday we went swimming, though mostly Sam played with a friend from school. Saturday was the library and the soccer game. It was raining hard, so everyone was soaked. In the afternoon we hung out, played on the computer, did homework, and watched a movie.

Today I'm trying to go hiking, though Sam doesn't seem quite ready yet. He was also disappointed that the sun came out, as he was hoping for a rainy march through the mud.

Another Mocha Friday

October 19, 2007 by Adam in Family

Another Mocha Friday. How could I ever get tired of it?

The kids were especially goofy last night. Sam dressed up like a creature, which involved strapping a rubber chicken to his face. Emma was more subdued, scribbling away in her notebook with a pink pen.

We have a full weekend ahead of us. Jamie and Emma go to Portland. Sam and I are being bachelors, though our schedule is pretty full. Tonight is swimming, tomorrow the library. Both days we have soccer games, followed by a pizza party to celebrate the end of the season. I'd like to try and sneak in a hike or something similar, but we'll see how much time we really have.

The weekend is over already

October 15, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend is over already. I'm not quite sure what happened, but I remember laying my head on the counter Sunday night, mumbling that I needed to go back to work so I can get some rest.

Friday was swimming, which was great. I did a bunch of errands on Saturday, picking up a new power supply for my computer, taking in a bunch of recycling, and getting the kids' computers upgraded.

Jamie went to Pat's Saturday night, leaving me to manage the kids. There was sock throwing, spaghetti making, dancing around to Code Monkey, and general hijinks all around. The kids went to bed, tired but happy. Of course, now Sam and Emma will spontaneously start singing the Code Monkey song at odd moments.

Sunday was a bit more low-key. We went to Oakway mall to see Angie and Winnie, while I ran around Borders with the kids. Dave came over in the evening while Jamie and I watched Mad Men. At night there was movies, though Jamie and I mostly slunk away to hide and be quiet for a few minutes.

Another sweet Mocha Friday

October 12, 2007 by Adam in Family

Another sweet Mocha Friday. Since the caffeine hasn't hit my brain yet, I think I'll try to summarize the week through various anecdotes that struck me as amusing or interesting.

I was up at 4:30 this morning, playing newly released computer games. I've been doing that every day since Wednesday, reveling in highly-polished video goodness.

Emma and I played a game where she was a pig and I was a farmer. My favorite part was cooking and eating her, which she didn't find too amusing. Eventually Sam joined in after I declared I was a vegetarian farmer. When we were assigning roles, I told Sam he was a carrot, and promptly cooked and ate him.

Sam's been reading Hardy Boy books, reading them at a rapid rate. Wednesday he took a field trip to mount Pisgah with his class. He was most impressed by a cougar kill of a deer, remarking on how long the spinal cord was.

This week our dish washer has been on the blink, the heating element stuck permanently on. We shut it off at the fuse box, but have been doing dishes by hand. It's strangely satisfying, soaking in warm water on a cool Fall evening.

Jamie's been busy, managing a sick Sam early in the week, working Wednesday, dealing with house issues, and today Sam's off school again. Hopefully tonight I can take the kids swimming and run around outside this weekend. Good times.

The week slowly moves along

October 09, 2007 by Adam in Family

The week slowly moves along. Sam's sick, sniffling his way through yesterday and today. Jamie got virtually no sleep Sunday night, though fortunately managed to recover last night. I got my flu shot, so my joints ached for awhile.

I'll probably down a third cup of tea this morning, if only to kick my brain into high gear.

The weekend has come to a close and we're bac...

October 08, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend has come to a close and we're back to the daily grind of work and school. It seems that I spent most of the weekend cooking or taking Sam to a soccer game. On Saturday I made the lasagna, biscotti, and fruit salad. Sunday was the bread, soup, and actually cooking everything. In general, I think it was a rousing success. Probably the most fun was making the little heart lasagnas for the kids.

Jamie took Emma to her ballet class on Saturday. I think she's loving it, dancing around the kitchen from time to time. I took Emma to Sam's first soccer game, where she played with Natalie and Sidney. On Sunday, it was just me and the other parents. It'll be odd when soccer is over for good, though I'm sure we'll find other physical activity for the boy.

We did do one big project Sunday morning. I disassembled Emma's old bed and moved it into the craft room. Jamie's now turning it into a guest bed, though it's awful comfortable to just plop down on it while Sam does homework.

Now it's time for a shower and getting my work stuff together.

It's Mocha Friday, and I just finish my last ...

October 05, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, and I just finish my last drop of that oh-so-tasty elixir. I was in an unusually bad mood last night, which is rare for me. Sam was a little grumpy, my computer was having issues, and I ended up giving myself a little timeout before rejoining my family. Fortunately I resolved my computer problem, made up with Sam, and all is well in the world.

This weekend promises to be filled with maniacal cooking on my part. I'm doing a seven-course Italian dinner this Sunday, which will likely span most of the afternoon. Tomorrow is the big cooking day, getting the biscotti, fruit salad, and other things ready. With luck, all I'll have to do is pop things in the oven periodically and bring them out to everyone in an apron.

I'm trying really hard to go swimming with the kids tonight. Various things have kept us home during swimming classes and we haven't gone for a long while. Swimming is one of the things I've done with the kids since Sam was a baby. Now Emma's nearly swimming herself, but I still love to play around in a warm pool at the end of the week.

What a weekend! It seems all a blur now, but...

October 01, 2007 by Adam in Family

What a weekend! It seems all a blur now, but I'll touch on the highlights.

Sam had soccer Friday night. There was no rain, but it was very chilly. My mom joined me to keep my mind off the shivers, and we admired Sam's running about. Saturday brought Emma's first ballet class. She was so excited, dancing around like all the other little girls. There was a tear in her tights near the bottom zone, which gave her a touch of 80's Madonna.

In the afternoon, we had Barbara and Zoltan over. Our kids all played together, making the expected mess in the play room. We adults traded wedding stories and generally ate our way over several hours. We had a bit of chocolate mousse to finish it up and everyone headed home.

Saturday was much more low-key. Angie brought over Winnie for a bit of play time, and Victoria stopped by. In the afternoon we went to Tom's Apple Orchard and stopped by 5th Street Market to get pizza for the kids. Jamie and I went out for dinner while my mom watched the kids. The first two places were closed, so we ended up at the place where Humble Bagel resides during the day.

I did my usual exercise and cereal later that night, and headed upstairs to find Jamie watching the finale of Rock of Love. It's not nearly as good as Mad Men, but there's striking paralells as to how disfunctional relationships between men and women can get.

Now it's moving day for me in cubicle land. I'm stuffed into a little-used cubicle while trained cubicle technicians reconfigure my workspace. I would have done it in 15 minutes with an allen wrench, but I suppose this way is far more scientific.

It's Mocha Friday on this typical Fall day in...

September 28, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday on this typical Fall day in Eugene. Raindrops beat a steady plop on my Starbucks lid as I walked in from my car. It's also move day for me, as I relocate my cubicle this afternoon so they can reconfigure it. When I move back in, Dave and I will be able to see each other, like the way it's been for the last few years.

The week has gone fairly well and everyone is settling back into the normal routines. Emma seems to be doing much better in school. Jamie has the house in order again. Sam's pretty much the same as always, wanting to play computers, talk to me about odd subjects, and run around in our yard.

This weekend Barbara, Zoltan, and their kids are coming over for tea. Barbara is Emma's teacher from last year and their whole family is very cool. I've been wanting to go swimming, but with Sam's soccer game tonight, the tea party, and Emma starting ballet tomorrow morning, I think it'll be too busy. I'm also hoping I can sneak in a library visit. Sam's been burning through the Magic Treehouse books at the rate of one a night.

All-in-all, life seems pretty good. Everyone is healthy, happy, and doing well. The pessimist inside me wonders how long it'll last, but the rest of me just wants to enjoy the moment.

It's been very nice having Jamie back

September 27, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's been very nice having Jamie back. The house is ship-shape and I actually have free time again. Emma seems to be enjoying school more, much to our relief.

I posted a bigger picture of the witch jars at Sadie's request. Already Sam is plotting to make more.

Well, according to the Internet flight trac...

September 24, 2007 by Adam in Family

Well, according to the Internet flight tracker, Jamie's plane just touched down in Portland. I don't really know if she plans on heading home right away, or if she'll have a break before driving down. We have a tiny family birthday party planned. Emma and I made cheesecake on Friday and the kids wrapped up all sorts of odd presents over the weekend.

Of course, tonight is sort of wacky, with Sam having soccer team photos and a practice. I'm sure both the kids want to see Jamie too, so there could be a bit of tension. My guess is that Jamie wants to take it easy after so much time in the air today.

As expected, Emma cried all morning trying to get out of school. Fortunately she was greeted by Barbara, her teacher from last year, and given so much love and attention it was easy for me to slip out.

Update: Jamie called and she's driving home now. It sounds like I'll be getting Emma, picking up Sam, and reuniting as a family this afternoon. Can't wait.

Update 2: Jamie's back, had a wonderful time, and has taken the kids to soccer tonight. She's pretty exhausted, but trying to stay up a little in an attempt to get back into the normal routine.

I think we had a better day today

September 22, 2007 by Adam in Family

I think we had a better day today. Emma said, "I wish every day was a weekend" and Sam heartily agreed. We had a few bumps in the road. Sam refused to go to his first soccer game and I threatened to keep him in his room all day long if he didn't go. Once there, of course, everything was fine. Emma played with a couple other girls and Sam did relatively well in the game.

I made crepes for breakfast, which were a big hit. For some odd reason, we started to make "witch jars" in preparation for Halloween. We paused for the soccer game, but had a great time working on them in the afternoon. We had Elder God Spawn (spaghetti stuffed in snail shells), Reconstituted Pixie Dust (sand with a Barbie head poking out), and much more. The labels were particularly fun to make, crumpled and tea-stained. The kids were greatly impressed.

The afternoon is winding down. Sam's playing with Sebastian and Emma's playing a Putt-Putt game. I'm looking forward to Dave, Kirsten, and Josh coming over tonight. A bit of relief sounds blissful.

Emma had a much better day yesterday

September 22, 2007 by Adam in Family

Emma had a much better day yesterday. We made Jamie's birthday cake, went shopping for presents, and generally hung out together. She very rarely cried and was almost her normal self again. In the evening Yayoe made us a wonderful dinner and the kids enjoyed exploring her house. We returned home and the kids took turns reading the Scaredy Squirrel book. Emma in particular was very funny, remembering most of the words, though a few specific words were a little off (e.g. antibacterial soap).

We returned from Sam's soccer game moments ago. I had to threaten to keep him in his room all day before he'd go. Needless to say, this is going to be his last season. Once he got to the game, though, he was just fine.

Now we're working on a pre-Halloween project, making ingredient jars for assorted magical spells. We've done shrunken gnome heads out of lemons already. Next is fairy dust. Fun, fun!

It's Mocha Friday, though I have to admit I'v...

September 21, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, though I have to admit I've been making Mochas every day while at home. It's gone beyond a mere weekly treat and is well into the realm of blissful codependence. Mocha helps me defend against Emma's wailing sorrow and summon the courage to get through another day. I think I'll call it Father's Little Helper.

I decided not to send Emma to school today. The week of Eternal Sadness finally got to me. Now I'll debate with myself all day as to whether I'm a kind parent or merely a pushover. In any case, we have a lot of errands to run today, half revolving around putting something together for Jamie's birthday. It's also picture day for Sam, so Emma and I may have to pin him down to apply the necessary hair products and brushing. Ah, the joys of single parenthood.

Yar, ya scallywags! It be Talk Like a Pirate...

September 19, 2007 by Adam in Family

Yar, ya scallywags! It be Talk Like a Pirate Day and I be tryin' to work and manage the kids as usual. Emma pretty much cried all the way through breakfast and on the car trip to school, saying she didn't want to go to school over and over. I dropped her off feeling horribly guilty. If only I be a black-hearted scoundrel, or three sheets to the wind. Avast!

I did the food shopping and need to start in on the laundry. I'll probably pick up Emma early from school, along with an eyepatch for her to try out. Hopefully she can help me make hamburger buns and fresh bread for grandma Sue, who's coming for dinner.


I survived another day

September 19, 2007 by Adam in Family

I survived another day.

I decided to ignore the children's cries of pain and agony, stuff some painkillers in both of them, and send them off to school. I think they're both a teeny bit sick, but it's hard to tell. Emma was a little quiet and cried a little at school, but the only real symptom was an itchy nose. Sam's back was a little sore, but I think it's on the mend.

Emma has been taking Jamie's absence a little hard. Her protestations of love continue every few minutes, from me to her family to her teacher. She was also pretty tired tonight, going to bed around 7:30.

I managed a fair bit of work today, though I'm sorely tempted to take tomorrow off. I have shopping and laundry to do, plus a little time to myself sounds blissful.

It was an exciting first day with the kids

September 18, 2007 by Adam in Family

It was an exciting first day with the kids. I managed to get them fed, dressed, and off to school, then picked up later. Emma was very cute and helpful. I think she said, "I love you, Dad" nearly fifty times over the day. We also talked a lot about how long until Jamie returns.

While they were at school, I managed to work some. Working from home is okay, though I felt a little disconnected from things. Basically I sat down, slaved away, ate lunch, and picked up the kids.

Sam hurt his back during recess, so I decided not to send him to soccer. We hung at out home, with a brief visit by Dave, Josh, and Kirsten. Later on we did a park run, then dinner, and getting ready for bed. Emma was feeling pretty lousy, likely with the cold Sam and I had over the weekend. She wanted me to take her temperature and was quite distraught to find it normal.

Eventually everyone got to bed, with Emma falling asleep in less than a minute after I read her a story. She tossed and turned all night though, eventually crawling into bed with me. I suspect I might be keeping her out of school if she feels bad. So much for working again.

Busy, busy . . .

Dear Adam, Sam and Emma

September 17, 2007 by Jamie in Family

Dear Adam, Sam and Emma. A note from Mom:
Gramma Judy and I are getting ready to go on the airplane today. We will be flying over the North Pole to Europe (see world map in Sam's room) I will take lots of pictures so you can see what it is like. Take good care of Dad, remember he needs your help to learn what we do every day ;-) Have a fun week in school and I will see you in 8 days. Drink lots of water. I love you. MOM

Jamie's headed up to Portland in preparation ...

September 17, 2007 by Adam in Family

Jamie's headed up to Portland in preparation for leaving tomorrow for Italy. The kids are both taking it easy, watching shows before bath and bed. We did a lot of playing and running around, and a few moments of peace are blissful.

It's been a bit of a rough weekend. I was fairly sick, as was Sam, with headaches and sniffles. Fortunately we're both on the mend and the girls seem to have missed getting it.

I'm going to try to go to work tomorrow, from home. It could be a bit of a challenge, hustling kids to school and taking care of the ordinary things of the world. We'll see how it goes.

The kids grabbed the camera and went around t...

September 14, 2007 by Adam in Family

The kids grabbed the camera and went around taking pictures of things. I can't remember who took what, but they both independently decided to take a picture of the sun. Fortunately the camera survived their artistic flair and they came up with a few interesting and quirky pieces.

It's Mocha Friday, though I've got a bit more time before I jump in the shower and hit Starbucks on the way into work. Jamie goes to Italy on Monday, leaving me to manage the kids, house, and work all by my lonesome. I think I'll survive, though I may have to duct tape the kids to the ceiling.

Sam hasn't been holding back when it comes to expressing his displeasure as of late. He really didn't want to go to soccer last night, though with some threats and cajoling, he went and had an okay time. Yet again, I think we'll get him into swimming or fencing later this year.

I'm hoping to keep the routine pretty standard this weekend, so it's swimming tonight and probably the library in the morning. It might be nice to see if Jamie can give me some time to myself while I build up my strength for the week ahead.

It's the end of the weekend and I should prob...

September 10, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's the end of the weekend and I should probably be in bed already. Saturday we went down to see the Eugene Celebration parade. Poor Emma was afraid of the noise and people, so Jamie took her back home while Sam and I watched it. Sam though it was pretty cool and funny. Afterwards we went to the library and walked home.

Later that day we had my dad and Yayoe over for dinner. Emma and I made fresh rolls and bread. Jamie made a wonderful custard dessert. It was all so tasty.

As for today, we had Dutch babies for breakfast, along with generous helpings of espresso. The kids and I hung out and then went canoeing. It went pretty well this time. Sam's favorite part was going through the rapids after a small waterfall. We circled around and went through it four or five times before heading home.

Tomorrow it's back to work and school. It'll be the last week before Jamie goes to Italy. I'm not sure what I should do to prepare. All I know is that I haven't really done much to get ready.

Mocha Friday

September 07, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. I just finished my beverage of choice and am feeling quite perky. The first week of school finished for the kids, which I think has made everyone pretty tired. Emma collapsed in a chair last night while Sam and I were loudly playing Metroid Prime. I went to bed fairly early as well.

I think in general, school has gone fairly well for the kids. Emma's starting to speak a little French again after getting out of the habit over the Summer. Sam's enjoying hanging out with his friends again at school. He's in the same class as Zach, which could be rather exciting.

Jamie had her first day of freedom yesterday, with five whole hours to herself. I don't think the change has quite hit her yet, and she's not exactly watching television and eating bon bons all day long. The normal household business calls, and she's getting ready for her Italy trip. Of course, she did find the time to buy Emma some pink hair spray, so it's not all hard work.

We've got a busy weekend ahead. I want to go swimming tonight, which we haven't done in awhile. We have dinner with my dad and Yayoe tomorrow, and tea with Emma's ex-French teacher and her family. Fun, fun.

The kids' first day went fine

September 06, 2007 by Jamie in Family

The kids' first day went fine. Sam was disappointed that the recess time was more minimal than he had hoped, but he had pizza for lunch which seemed to make up some points. Emma said she learned names and painted a shaker but she "couldn't roll it up for a long time still" Both were very tired at pick up. I went to work and had lunch at home in peace but it seemed to be over all too soon. We'll sleep well tonight and do it all over in the morning!

It's the first day of school for the kids today

September 05, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's the first day of school for the kids today. We went to the ice cream social last night while Jamie went to the gym. Sam found his buddies and ran around with them while Emma chased after a couple older girls she knew. We discovered that Sam's teacher is Ms. Anderson, who evidently married another teacher from the school over the Summer, right on the school grounds. Hopefully Sam likes her.

We threw Sam in the bath in preparation for his big day. Emma had already taken a bath earlier, but while Jamie and I were chatting, she climbed in with the boy. I think Sam was demonstrating too much fun with the bubbles, and it proved an irresistible lure. Soon enough the two of them were splashing about, getting bubbles everywhere.

It's been surprisingly quiet at work lately, especially in comparison to the madness of our various computer upgrades last month. I'm trying to take care of things that have been languishing, ignored for more important projects. I'll probably do more of that today.

The long weekend has come and gone

September 04, 2007 by Adam in Family

The long weekend has come and gone. My mom, Dave, Kirsten, and Josh came over Friday night. We had some apple pie and a cobbler made from the blackberries Emma and I picked the night before. My mom bestowed gifts upon everyone, including a cute dress from Spain.

Saturday morning was spent with the kids, with a library trip in the afternoon while Jamie took them to 5th Street Market. Sunday was the "Sam play" day, with a visit to Zach's for swimming and a long play time with Ben and Sebastian across the street. Monday was spent going shopping and generally hanging around the house. In the evening we went to a BBQ at Bob's where I returned with an entire pie from Anna.

Now I'm back at work, getting ready to update our home page. School starts tomorrow for the kids. Jamie goes to Italy in a couple weeks. Busy, busy.

It's Mocha Friday, though my morning coffee i...

August 31, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, though my morning coffee is still over an hour away.

Soccer season started, and Sam was out running around with his friends last night. He wasn't too thrilled to actually go, but once he was there, I don't think it was too bad. I pointed out that it was good exercise, which he grudgingly agreed with.

Emma and I spent much of the time picking blackberries, along with a small cluster of kids that tagged along. I think we have enough for blackberry coffee cake for the weekend. Emma picked quite a few, though half of them ended up being eaten.

After practice wrapped up, we went off to Ben and Jerry's for Sharon's birthday party. She's a good friend of Jamie's and her kids are good friends of ours, so it works out really well. Everyone ate too much ice cream and we took some very tired kids home to bed.

As for this final weekend before school, I think we'll do the usual swimming, library, and so on. Maybe we can sneak in some outdoor events and a lot of relaxation before the fast-paced school schedule begins.

Jamie called at work, sounding a little on ed...

August 29, 2007 by Adam in Family

Jamie called at work, sounding a little on edge, and letting me know that I was welcome back at home any time. Fortunately it was pretty quiet at work. I was the only person there, everyone else off somewhere or working at home, so I snuck out a little early.

The kids seemed a bit grumpy, so I decided to get them out of the house and took them to a canoe rental place by Alton Baker Park. There's a bunch of canals that run by Autzen Stadium that I'd never gone on, and it was the first time the kids had ever been canoing.

We stayed a little longer than I should have (2 hours), and the kids got a little grumpy/tired towards the end, but in general everyone had a great time. Emma tried out paddling and she developed a love for the blackberries that were constantly on the banks. Sam's favorite part was going through the "rapids" near a short waterfall. Now I'm exhausted and ready for bed.

The beach was gorgeous, I was all set to spen...

August 28, 2007 by Jamie in Family

The beach was gorgeous, I was all set to spend several days. However, Sam missed Daddy and wanted to go home, and the kids started their annoying fighting and then Emma missed Daddy and I couldn't take it any longer by myself. We (meaning I) cleaned up and drove home. Phooey.

I just got a call from Jamie

August 27, 2007 by Adam in Family

I just got a call from Jamie. Initially, all I heard was Emma crying in the background. Then Jamie pops in and says "We're coming home." and that the kids missed me.

I think the beach trip wasn't quite the lovely visit it was envisioned to be. Ah well, the one day to myself was quite nice. It'll be good to have the kids home again.

It's Monday and I'm back to work

August 27, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Monday and I'm back to work. Jamie and the kids are over at the coast and the house seems terribly big for little ol' me. I kept myself busy by mowing the lawn, gardening, doing laundry, and generally tidying up. I think they're coming back Wednesday or so, but it's up to Jamie and her whims.

Mostly Jamie and I hung out with Emma on Friday night and Saturday. We went for a long walk to the store, visited the library, and spent the afternoon hanging out. It was quiet without Sam, who had already gone to the coast. Having just one kid around is a very different experience.

My Friday Mocha is long gone, I've gone throu...

August 24, 2007 by Adam in Family

My Friday Mocha is long gone, I've gone through the morning's e-mails, and the work week is wrapping up.

Swimming lessons are done for the week. Sam did quite well, though he doesn't think he learned much due to his class being so crowded. Emma had mixed feelings about lessons as well. I think it was colder than she wanted, even though she seemed to like her instructor quite a bit. Emma's on the verge of learning to swim. When we go tonight, I'll have to test her on the skills she's learned.

Last night Jamie went to Angie's and then a meeting at the Little French School. Sam played with the neighbor boys, getting muddy and tired. Emma played in the sprinklers. For dinner I made a huge batch of noodles, and then we retired to play a bit of Sam and Max. Good times.

It's a big weekend for Sam, who's going to the beach with Jim and Judy. I think they're going out crabbing, even. Jamie's talking about talking Emma to the coast to join them on Sunday, returning sometime early next week. It'll be weird to have some quiet days in the house.

So, it'll be just Emma, Jamie and I for tonight and tomorrow. I think we'll do swimming and then the library in the morning. Other than that, it would be nice to have some downtime to just hang out. We'll see how it goes.

The girls made it home safe and sound on Sunday

August 20, 2007 by Adam in Family

The girls made it home safe and sound on Sunday. Sam and I had a great guys-only weekend, filled with camping, computer playing, and action movies, exactly as planned. The one thing we weren't able to do was to rent a canoe and paddle about, but we'll try again some future weekend.

Towards the evening on Sunday, Sam and Ben spent an hour building up the Imperial Army out of Star Wars Legos. Emma and I played in the basement along side them, jumping around to the Mission Impossible theme song.

Afterwards I took Sam to a birthday party, where they'd rented the entire Amazon pool. It was sort of weird, not having a kid I had to watch. Sam played with John. I swam around and socialized with some of the other parents. The life guards finally kicked out the kids, who swarmed the dessert table. Sam returned with a Pirates of the Caribbean action figure and shrunken head as a party prize thingie.

Mocha Friday

August 17, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. That delicious elixir is long gone. It was almost medicinal today, along with three Advil. I woke up in the middle of the night with a bad headache, stumbling downstairs and ending up sleeping on the Foof (the blue beanbag-like thing). I slept in past the time I normally went to work, so I came in pretty late. Fortunately I almost feel okay now, as long as I don't jiggle my noggin around too much.

Jamie and Emma were getting ready to go to Portland this weekend. Sam and I will be camping tonight. He has beef jerky and marshmallows out, which I guess is all an 8 year-old boy needs to eat on a camping trip. I'll probably bring along something a little more sensible.

Since it's a boys-only weekend for me, I think we'll try to see a movie, play more Sam and Max, and generally have a good time. I'm sure by the end we'll frantically clean so as not to get in trouble by the womenfolk.

It was another swimming night last night

August 16, 2007 by Adam in Family

It was another swimming night last night. Emma has mixed feelings about the whole thing. She was getting pretty chilly towards the end since she's in the big, unheated pool now. Afterwards we played for a couple minutes in the play pool, then she decided she just wanted to go home. I think that after staying up until 10 o'clock the night before, she was pretty tuckered out.

Jamie was off at King Estates Winery with Angie, so I managed the best I could. Dinner was a quirky affair. Sam got waffles, Emma had rice, and I snuck in a bagel in between courses. Afterwards we watched a short educational video about the earth's habitable zone. Sam's been going around saying "Doctor Spitzer, Doctor Spitzer!" nonstop.

We also got a little present in the mail, the new Sam and Max game. It came with a poster that Sam put up in his room. The game itself is pretty funny. I think Sam's favorite part is that the main character (Sam) can whip out a large gun and start randomly blasting things. Ironically, that was the solution to the first puzzle we ran across (turning normal cheese into a reasonable approximation of swiss cheese). Good times.

The county fair appears to have started in ea...

August 15, 2007 by Adam in Family

The county fair appears to have started in earnest. Last night I was trying to go to bed while 70's dance music blared from the fairgrounds. Through some quirk of geography, the sound travels right up the hill through our open window. Plus Emma was up past 9 o'clock, crying and fidgeting. I ended up sleeping in the basement, which was vastly uncomfortable on an improvised bed made from couch cushions.

Sam and I are slowly getting ready for the weekend activities. We're camping Friday night while the girls go up to Portland. We have marshmallows and hot dogs, which is all one needs for such an activity. This is a pretty low-key event, just camping out near Fall Creek. Maybe next year we can do some backpacking to a camp site and really rough it.

What a great weekend! It seems like a bit ...

August 13, 2007 by Adam in Family

What a great weekend!

It seems like a bit of a rarity to say that, but this weekend went really well. Friday night we all went out to Barbara and Zoltan's house, Emma's old French teacher and her husband. They have two kids, around Sam's age, and everyone ran around and had a good time.

On Saturday Jamie went out to coffee and hiking while the kids and I did our library and Humble Bagel run. Sam's gotten into an old science fiction show, Sliders, and has been telling me all about it. He's also been playing with Sebastian, who lives across the street. Sebastian has recently become the middle child and Sam's company is probably very welcome.

On Sunday I took the kids to the ponds by Autzen stadium. They got very wet and mudding, having a great time until Emma got too cold. Later Jamie went out with Sam to get new shoes and school supplies. Emma and I seemed to play every game in the house, from Clue to Give Me the Brain. We also did a couple rounds of painting, which is always fun.

After dinner, I took Sam to collect his rock from Zach at Amazon park. They were putting on Romeo and Juliet, which ended up being somewhat boring to Sam. Since Romeo was played by a female actress and Mercutio was particularly bawdy, I found the performance quite amusing.

Now it's back to work. The big go-live this weekend is on track, but several hours behind. We'll see how our help desk calls do today.

Friday already, my mocha just a shower and sh...

August 10, 2007 by Adam in Family

Friday already, my mocha just a shower and short drive away. The week has been zipping along. At work, I'm frantically preparing for the big upgrade to our main clinical system. Lots of people in our department will be working this weekend, myself included, though I'm hoping it's only for a few hours here and there.

Last night the kids and I entertained each other while Jamie went to go power walking with her gym cohorts. We took turns being blindfolded and trying to accomplish various tasks, all while being filmed and having the robot vacuum the floor. There's a lovely movie of me bonking my head against a pillar and Sam avoiding the iRoomba in extremely dramatic ways.

We're off to dinner with at Emma's French teacher's house. Barbara is a neat woman, her husband is a scientist at the U of O, and their kids are around Sam's age. Should be fun.

For those of you who may be worried that Adam...

August 08, 2007 by Jamie in Family

For those of you who may be worried that Adam is writhing in an elaborately carved four poster surrounded by flickering candles while we keep constant vigil for the fever to break....please be assured that he is fine. He experienced a nauseous headache Friday night and Saturday morning, but some rest and a lessening of stress at the office has effected a miraculous cure. No laudanum required ;-)

I got deathly ill Saturday morning

August 06, 2007 by Adam in Family

I got deathly ill Saturday morning. I woke up in the middle of the night and rolled around in the basement floor, popping Advil like candy. I was still in amazing pain by morning, scaring away the kids with my horrific grimaces. I kept telling myself that it would pass and after a nap I felt vaguely normal. Here at the end of Sunday, I feel just fine again.

Saturday involved a library trip by myself and watching movies with the kids while Jamie went first to her brother's and then to a birthday party. Fortunately everyone was in a good mood and I was feeling better, so it went pretty smoothly.

On Sunday the big event was a family walk to Metropol where I officially had too much coffee. Dave and Ray came over, and Sam made his grandpa some Swiss steak. Jamie let me have some time to myself in the afternoon before heading over to Angie's. Tonight was quiet, hanging out with the neighbors and taking it easy. Now I'm mentally preparing for work tomorrow.

The raccoon incident came to a close, with the swimming pool getting tossed into the garbage. A strategic withdrawal seemed like the most sensible approach. Otherwise Jamie might have voted me out of the office in the Fall.

Well, I finished my Mocha

August 03, 2007 by Adam in Family

Well, I finished my Mocha. Things are going horribly wrong with our main server at work, but fortunately I don't have to deal with it (yet).

We decided to repair and refill the pool yesterday. Both kids lent a hand, getting completely soaked in the process. Emma had a great time spraying down her brother, eventually coming inside when she turned blue from the cold. Unfortunately this morning I found the pool again partially deflated. I haven't decided if I want to surrender or not just yet.

I'm looking forward to heading home tonight and going swimming with the kids. They've all been learning new techniques and I want to see them show off their stuff. Sam's learning all sorts of exotic strokes and Emma can supposedly swim for real now.

Jamie has a couple events with friends happening this weekend (fortunately I got rid of those pesky time-consuming "friends" long ago). I think we'll do a library run and maybe Dave will watch the kids a bit. Some time to just hang out sounds very nice.

I'm about to declare jihad against the raccoons

August 02, 2007 by Adam in Family

I'm about to declare jihad against the raccoons. Last night Jamie was woken by a raccoon in our backyard. It had pulled the tarp over to the edge so far that it worked as a drain. Half the pool is now empty. I may be a vegetarian, but I'm sorely tempted to hide in the bushes with a baseball bat tonight.

We went out to dinner last night. Everyone got dressed up and we went to Ambrosia. Jason Kronholm was our waiter, so we got great service (and funny too). I realized that I've known him for twenty years. I'm old.

The last day of July

August 01, 2007 by Adam in Family

The last day of July. The older I get, the faster time seems to fly.

Work has been completely insane since the move. We had a significant computer upgrade that went badly, and I continue to deal with those issues. I somehow got named the lead person to deal with this million-dollar piece of software we purchased. From there, things get even nuttier.

In any case, I'm back home, entertaining the kids as usual. When I arrived, Sam was wearing a blindfold and had spent the afternoon going around blind. Tonight we turned a laundry basket into a race car for Emma. She kept calling it her "baby" in a tough-girl voice, much to Sam and I's amusement. Life goes on.

It's Sunday already

July 29, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Sunday already. I survived without Jamie fairly well so far, though admittedly I had a little help. Friday night was our normal swimming night, though poor Emma complained the salt water hurt her hurt toe and spent the entire time out of the pool. She ended up assembling a lounge chair out of foam exercise weights, so she wasn't too bored.

Saturday was a whirlwind of activity which included a hearty breakfast, a trip to the library, and walking over to Saturday market. At the end of that, both kids were pretty cranky so we hung out at home and had some quiet time. Then we had a short trip to Fred Meyer's to get food and pool supplies. Each kid also got a little treat for themselves, Sam picking out a watch and Emma getting a pink chair. Sam spent the rest of the day announcing the time every five minutes.

In the evening, Dave, Josh, and Kirsten came over. They entertained the kids while I made a big dinner. After filling 'em up on pasta and corn, I had them move the last of the big furniture around. Sam now has an actual bed and the guest bed is in Emma's room. Both kids slept on their new beds last night.

We also had some excitement with the pool in the back yard. Saturday morning we went out to find the upper ring deflated. Evidently the raccoons had returned. We reinflated it and taped it up. Since the pool water was filthy, we turned on the filters all day, dumped in huge amounts of bleach, and scooped out all the bugs and detritus. At the end of the day, the water was actually fairly clean looking.

As for today, well, I'd love to rest. Theoretically Jamie returns sometime. We'll see how it goes.

It's Mocha Friday, though I haven't actually ...

July 27, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, though I haven't actually gotten my beverage of choice yet. I suspect I'll swing by Starbucks on the drive into work.

We've hit another milestone in the Miller-Mellor household. Sam is now mostly moved downstairs to the guest bedroom. The mattress is on the floor, but he has his dresser and books, along with his homemade ugly doll named Ogg.

The funniest part was coming home last night and being handed a blue badge with "Authority" written on it in metallic colors. Jamie's was silver, which means she could go into Sam's room during the day if she knocks first. I, of course, got a gold badge, which means I have full access. Poor Emma is badgeless, so she would knock patiently and wait for Sam to say "come in".

I'm not sure how Emma feels about the move. This is the first time she's had a room to herself. I'd ask her and she'd say it was "horrible" or something along those lines. Last night when we were putting her to bed, she was folding clothes and fixing up her room the way she wanted. I think she'll be just fine.

Jamie and I were a little tense last night. It's been a rough week at work for me and having the kids full time this Summer has been harder than she expected. Hopefully this weekend away will be relaxing for her. I suspect my kid-filled weekend will be less than quiet, but fun nonetheless.

Tonight is swimming, which I can hopefully coordinate with Jenny. Tomorrow is the library and Humble Bagel. I think we'll be hosting Dave and Josh in the evening. With luck I can get them to help me move the rest of the furniture around for the kids' bedrooms. As for Sunday, well, maybe we'll take a hike or go to the playground. We'll see how it goes.

Jamie made plans to go to the coast with her ...

July 25, 2007 by Adam in Family

Jamie made plans to go to the coast with her mom this weekend, so it looks like I'll have the kids to myself. I'll probably do the typical swimming/library/park activities. Maybe if I can think of something brilliant and interesting, we'll do that too.

Yesterday saw some progress in turning the guest bedroom into Sam's bedroom. Desks were sanded and prepped for painting. Books were moved around. Sam's getting pretty excited about it.

Work continues to be amazingly busy. My brain is tired.

The week is chugging along

July 24, 2007 by Adam in Family

The week is chugging along. Work is still insane, but not quite to the degree it was yesterday. I got paged at midnight last night, but managed to get up at a reasonable hour and head in to work, only to find a new set of crises to deal with.

Sam slept outside in a tent last night. Jamie and I chatted briefly this morning and decided it was getting to the point where he needed his own room. He and Emma love each other dearly, but they've been spending way too much time together this Summer and Sam needs a place he can call his own.

The weekend is coming to a close

July 23, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend is coming to a close. I think I've milked the maximum number of birthdays possible. Last night Jamie made a birthday dinner for Josh, my mom, and I. Today at noon my mom and I celebrated at Jenny's house. That's a lotta birthday. It was fun chatting with my family and Isabell, Destin, and Jordan played in the pool.

Friday night the kids and I swam. On Saturday, Sam, Josh, Dave and I went to the Transformers movie and enjoyed the quality of the explosions. Later Emma and I went to the library together where she happily wolfed down a bagel.

The main excitement of the weekend was finding raccoons had eaten holes in the tubes leading to the pool, presumably looking to get at the juicy dead bugs inside. Today Sam, Emma, and I went to TruValue to get new ones. We stopped by Metropol bakery to eat pastries and drink too much coffee (I did the coffee, they did the pastries).

Of course, tomorrow is the big day at work. I'm waking up at 4 am to check how the server upgrade went. I suspect I'll be fielding help desk calls until late in the afternoon. There's always weird things that pop up. "I picked the wrong week to stop sniffing glue" is a phrase often muttered after a server upgrade.

Mocha Friday

July 20, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. I cheated and stopped by Starbuck's on the way to work this morning. I'm not yet brave enough to try the cafeteria here at work.

Last night was a pretty low-key birthday celebration. I got a card from my dad and Yayoe, complete with Old Navy gift certificates. Emma made a card and gave me her coveted lucky kitty statue. Sam drew me a map of Samatopia. Jamie bought me cheesecake from Metropol. It was all good.

Jamie was pretty tired last night, so I spent a fair bit of time with the kids. They were in good spirits, so it was a pleasure. Emma played in the sand box while Sam swam in the pool. Later we played assorted odd student games from the Experimental Gameplay site. They were both enamored of Cacodaemon's Barbecue Party in Hell, which involves spinning a cute little kitty and then tossing it in the oven. Good times.

It's my birthday today

July 19, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's my birthday today. 38 years old.

I just finished having breakfast with my mom. There was some mix-up over which Glenwood to go to, but she dutifully drove across town twice in order to make it happen. I was entertained by a gaggle of teenage girls reading Harry Potter out loud, which both amused and made me feel a little old.

It's a strange feeling sneaking up on 40. I don't feel especially old. I'm probably in the best physical shape I've ever been. Just the other day I was tossing around 100+ lbs of kids in the play room. I can still pick up both kids and spin them around in circles, which is the best justification of hitting the gym I've ever heard.

As for the rest of the family, everyone's doing well. Jamie and I had our date night last night while Josh, Dave, and Kirsten took the kids to the park. We watched Coupling, our favorite BBC show, which is like Friends but lots more funny.

Now I'm at work, slowly catching up with odd requests. I'm still getting settled in my new cubicle. Writing "Cube Sweet Cube" on the whiteboard seemed to help.

We're back home

July 17, 2007 by Adam in Family

We're back home.

The birthday surprise was an "ultimate" spa treatment. It was kinda fun in a vaguely girly self-indulgent way. I think I dozed off a few times during the wrap and massage.

The only thing of note is that upon our return, we found our pool completely filled with algae. The pool cover came off and turned it a cheerful green color. Of course, Sam had to jump in and swim around. He insisted I call him Swamp Thing and he repeatedly emerged to wreck vengeance upon the surface dwellers.

The kids are now in bed, winding down for sleep. I go to my new work tomorrow. Ah, change.

I'm posting from the Bonneville Hot Springs R...

July 16, 2007 by Adam in Family

I'm posting from the Bonneville Hot Springs Resort & Spa. Jamie drove us out of Portland yesterday, where we stopped by a waterfall and then headed across the Bridge of the Gods into Washington. I finally guessed the hot springs as our destination, going off her clue that I should bring a swimming suit while packing.

The resort is nice, very new. The spa itself is essentially a swimming pool and a couple hot tubs, filled with mineral water. There's even a hot tub in our room that's filled with the water from the spring. We've been exceedingly lazy, swimming, lounging about, and generally taking it easy. It's been quite nice.

As for today, we're heading out at eleven this morning, going to some other unknown destination. Jamie's calling it my birthday present, so we'll see what that means soon enough.

It's Saturday morning and as usual, I'm up an...

July 15, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Saturday morning and as usual, I'm up and about before anyone else. We're still at Jim and Judy's house. The mysterious anniversary event starts today, I think, though Jamie has done remarkably well keeping it a secret.

On Friday Sam and I went to see the new Harry Potter movie. I though it was quite good, though Sam said it was short and left out a lot of the events from the book. Sam's moved on to the classics since finishing Harry Potter, finishing Alice in Wonderland last night.

I was going to go to Flicks and Picks to pay my final respects, but heard the news that 10,000 videos from their collection were going to be purchased by the Eugene public library. That's a perfect solution, in my opinion. Most of our movies already come from the library, and the thought that my childhood is preserved in that way fills me with hope.

Friday night was a typical swimming night. The kids had a great time as usual and we stayed a little past the point where they got tired and loopy. Towards the end they were constructing boats out of floatation devices, attacking them with sea monsters and trying to get their yellow duckies across the wide sea.

The trip up to Portland yesterday was uneventful. Everyone has a good time here, in part for the change of pace and new toys. Jim and Judy took the kids to a fountain while Jamie and I went to Fry's to wander the halls of electronica and return with a couple headphones and highlighters.

As for today, who knows? I think the mystery will be revealed after breakfast. Should be fun.

Well, we aren't going to Portland just yet

July 13, 2007 by Adam in Family

Well, we aren't going to Portland just yet. There was some miscommunication between Jamie and her mom, so we're heading up tomorrow. I thought about going in to work today, but decided to instead do fun things such as go to the library, take the kids swimming, and see the new Harry Potter movie. I might swing by Flicks and Picks to give my last respects and maybe pick up a movie or two at their sale.

Last night I was so tired, so much so that I was a little on the grumpy side. I fell asleep on the couch next to Emma as she watched some show. We also worked on "experiments", including the old standby, corn starch, water, and food coloring. Later in the evening I perked right up, but it took awhile.

Everyone helped me move into my new cubicle yesterday. The kids were great for the first half, and then got pretty wacky towards the end. I got my plants moved over and watered them heavily. My computer got plugged in and turned on, connecting to the network just fine. When Tuesday comes, I guess I'll be as ready as I'll ever be.

It's my final day working in the Support Serv...

July 12, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's my final day working in the Support Services building next to Sacred Heart. At lunch today, I'm going to be going home, grabbing my family, and moving everything off to the new place. It's in the old Sony building, clear across town. There's a gym, which is good, and free parking, which is also good. The room itself seems like a sea of gray cubicles, without much character.

I did my last bike ride coming in this morning. It was warm and gorgeous, and I wore a t-shirt with no jacket. It's days like this that I'll miss.

Last night Jamie and I went out on a date, going to Oakway mall for dinner and shopping. I picked up some boxer shorts with cephalopods, which made my day.

I had a whopping headache this morning, mostl...

July 10, 2007 by Adam in Family

I had a whopping headache this morning, mostly controlled by a combination of Cafe Mocha and Advil. Supposedly it's going to reach 100 degrees today, so the thought of sitting quietly in an air conditioned building was greatly appealing.

Jamie was getting the pool ready for the kids today. I think even Emma might enjoy a dip in the cool water once the temperature gets up there. Sam and John went swimming for a long while yesterday. I think Sam's inventing new pool games, such as running around the perimeter and creating a whirl pool effect. Great fun.

Everyone's back again and we had a wonderful ...

July 09, 2007 by Adam in Family

Everyone's back again and we had a wonderful day yesterday. I whipped up breakfast for a change while Jamie went to the gym. Sam read Harry Potter while Emma and I painted. Later we went to Hendrick's Park to fly a kite, play Frisbee, and run around. Humble Bagel followed, with Emma striking up a conversation with a fellow bagel-goer. Upon return was Night at the Museum for Sam (Care Bears for Emma). Jamie visited with Angie and I had a few moments to myself.

When I went to return the movies, I sadly discovered that Flicks and Picks was closing, the store where I'd rented videos since I was a kid. I sadly handed over a video for the last time and returned to the car to find Emma fast asleep. I carried her to the guest bedroom in her princess dress. She looked just like sleeping beauty.

The kids went to Bob's house for dinner. Emma picked a bunch of blueberries for me. Jamie and I made dinner together and watched part of some overly dramatic Johnny Depp movie. It made for a busy, funny, happy day.

Now I'm heading into work in a few hours. The days are counting down, with everyone coming to work on Thursday to help me pack and move to the new place. Very odd.

It's Mocha Friday, the last one at my current...

July 06, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, the last one at my current place of work. I'm still not sure what I'll do once I start going mobile, driving a car each day. Maybe I'll make one for myself at home before I head out.

I survived my night alone at Casa del Miller-Mellor. I admittedly played a bit of video games, which I rarely get to do when I have famiily about. There was also a tremendous amount of work to be done, from watering plants, doing laundry, doing dishes, and so on. My exciting Friday evening plans involve going food shopping and finishing laundry.

Everyone should be back tomorrow afternoon. I'll probably make myself a hearty breakfast and go to Farmer's Market. I should probably relax a bit, while I can, as I suspect Jamie will want lots of alone time when she returns.

It's been a fairly quiet week so far, except ...

July 05, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's been a fairly quiet week so far, except for yesterday where America joined together to show their patriotism by blowing things up. We celebrated over at the Musgroves' where Jeff had purchased a massive arsenal of fireworks. Emma thought they were pretty neat until they got to the loud ones. Sam stayed late and got driven home, then switching to our balcony to watch the ones around town.

It looks like Jamie and the kids are going to the coast today. It was a spur of the moment decision, trying to come up with something to stay cool and entertain the kids for a few days. Fortunately for Jamie, I usually transform that weird, jittery feeling when my family's away into compulsive house work. I'm not sure I'll have time to create a master bedroom suite or add in a hot tub, but I'm sure I'll think of something.

The weekend has come and gone

July 02, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend has come and gone. There weren't really a lot of big events or exciting stories. It was fun, pleasant, and somewhat relaxing. Friday night I went swimming with the kids. The hour flew by like it was nothing, with everyone having a great time. Now that Emma can move around so well in the water, it's a lot more fun for everyone.

Saturday was pancakes, eggs, and espresso, then a trip to the library and Humble Bagel with the kids. Sam picked up Piratology, which has lots of cool things to fiddle with inside. I think it's become Emma's favorite new book. We then had quiet time, watching movies, then playing a little in the pool and sandbox. Evening came and went without too much excitement.

Sunday's highlights were a trip to 5th Street Market and the kids playing with Sierra in the afternoon. I got some gardening in and bothered Jamie in the kitchen. She and Sam made egg noodles from scratch, which got turned into great noodle soup. Dave and Kirsten came over that night, where we drank martinis and had a delicious meal. The kids watched the old Fantasia and really enjoyed it.

Now it's Monday. I'm going to take a field trip to my new office in a half an hour. It's the first time I've seen things all set up. Next Thursday I'll move my stuff over, right before our anniversary trip to Portland. Ah, change.

I have a few more gulps remaining in my Frida...

June 29, 2007 by Adam in Family

I have a few more gulps remaining in my Friday Mocha. I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do once I move offices - pick up something on the way? Make it at home? The impending office move looms ever closer. Yesterday I pulled off all the stuff from my cubicle walls and drawers, stuffing them in four boxes. It's feeling increasingly drab and clinical, working away in these gray walls.

Sam had a great time in the pool yesterday. Emma got too chilly, like before, but Sam toughed it out and we ended up doing a little photo shoot of him jumping out of the water. His hair has gotten really long, so it sprays nicely. These are a few of the more choice shots.

I think the transition to the Summer months has been a little bumpy for Jamie. The kids were both a little wacky when I got home last night. The kids briefly pretended to surf on couch cushions while I played surf music. Eventually that broke down and we played with Magnetix, building odd, magnetically attached constructions.

As for the weekend, we'll probably do the usual swimming and library stuff. I have a hard time convincing the kids to go to the library with me these days. Even a trip to Humble Bagel doesn't cut it. Maybe after Sam finishes his Harry Potter book, he'll be up for it. At the rate he's going, he might finish in a couple weeks.

Emma's last day of baking camp is today. Yesterday she brought home cookies and two kinds of cheesecake. If she did this all the time, I'd end up the plumpest parent on the block.

I had a lot of fun last night

June 28, 2007 by Adam in Family

I had a lot of fun last night. Sierra, one of Emma's teachers from the Little French School, came by to watch the kids. They had a great time together, with even Sam talking a liking to her. Jamie says glowing things about Sierra and it sounds like she'll be a recurring babysitter over the Summer months.

Jamie and I went for a long walk, having dinner at Turtles, a local bar and grill. It was nice to just chat about odd things and hold hands, a pleasant reminder of how fond I am of my wife.

The kids tried out the swimming pool for the ...

June 27, 2007 by Adam in Family

The kids tried out the swimming pool for the first time yesterday. It was still pretty cold, though I think the outside temperature was in the 80's. Sam stayed in the longest, with Emma quickly getting too chilly. She then played with paddle boats, trying to run into Sam as he pretended to be a giant sea creature.

Sam was up late again, reading Harry Potter until 10 o'clock. He'll easily finish before the movie and last book come out later this month.

Emma returned from baking camp yesterday with pineapple upside down cake and white chocolate mousse. I restrained myself and only had a nibble.

We're now proud owners of a swimming pool, 3 ...

June 24, 2007 by Adam in Family

We're now proud owners of a swimming pool, 3 feet deep and 12 feet in diameter. Toys R Us had a sale and we picked it up for $70. Since we're both nervous parents, we laid down various rules, especially to Emma. I feel pretty good about things, as she's tall enough to stand up in the water. Nothing beats parental supervision, though.

It took all afternoon to fill and takes up a sizable portion of our back yard. The kids were pretty excited about it, with Emma trying to convince us that it wasn't freezing. We ended up breaking out the paddle boats that my dad made for the kids. Sam ended up trying hard to capsize his with massive waves.

Tomorrow we begin the Summer routine. I've got endless e-mail to catch up on once I return to work. Emma starts a week of cooking camp with her French School. Sam and Jamie will get some rare alone time, hanging out together for much of the week.

Saturday came and went, with it finally feeli...

June 24, 2007 by Adam in Family

Saturday came and went, with it finally feeling like we're settling into our old routines again. Jamie made crepes for breakfast, which I coupled with a hand-made Mocha. Afterwards I went to the library and Saturday Market, returning home with goodies for the mind and body.

At noon I took the kids swimming. After our trip to Bend, swimming every day, Emma has become extremely comfortable in the water. Her days of floaters are behind her and can swim short distances without help. My favorite thing was watching her go under water, a big smile on her bubble-covered face. Her new big thing is swimming to the bottom to touch it and go back up to the top.

The afternoon and evening was filled with cooking. I decided to make a six-course meal for her. Initially it was going to just be for Jamie, then Jamie and Sam, and then Emma decided to be part of the fun. They watched The Song of the Thin Man while food arrived. As dessert rolled around, we transitioned to Emma, the movie with Gwyneth Paltrow.

First was shrimp cocktail, the first time I've cooked with meat in ages. Afterwards came a fruit dish, served in a half-pineapple. Fresh French bread was next, hot out of the oven. The main dish was spaghetti with fresh herbs and tomatoes. Next was a salad in the continental style. Finally I brought out the cheesecake, made the night before. Wine was served throughout, with Sam pouring for Jamie.

It was a fun activity for the day, though I probably don't have the energy to repeat it any time soon. Today will likely be simpler fare, along with running errands. We might try and get a small pool for the backyard. We'll see how it goes.

We're back from our trip

June 22, 2007 by Adam in Family

We're back from our trip. There's so much to say that it's hard to know where to begin.

Sam in particular had a great time in Bend. We explored lava caves with Dave and Josh. He got to ride a horse for the first time and is pretty excited about doing it again some day. Sam went fishing with Jim, and he was the only one to catch anything - two Rainbow Trout, which he actually ate a little for dinner. Sam and I also rented a tandem bike and rode around the grounds at Eagle Crest. Hopefully that'll translate to him learning to ride a bike.

That's not to say the rest of us didn't have a good time. It was extremely relaxing and lazy, especially with other people around to entertain the kids. Nearly every day I'd take the kids swimming. Emma learned some new tricks and is more comfortable in the water than ever. Even though I lathered on the sunscreen, I've returned with a tan. Bend had gorgeous weather every day, plus the great view of the Cascades.

We also saw Brant and Wendy's new place. It's a barn with a kitchen, utility room, and bedroom tucked away to one side. They're raising some grain for a cash crop. Sam got to help move the irrigation thingies. We also had a funny moment, trying to jump the creek and failing miserably. We got very wet but had a good time.

Still, it's nice to be back. I'm planning on making a fancy meal for Jamie tomorrow. We went out to eat at Jen's Place in Sisters, which it turns out won the Bite of Bend. It was a five-course meal, crazy expensive, but also crazy good.

I did have a bit of Internet withdrawl. Plus was down for part of it. Fortunately Dave, Kirsten, and Josh came home early. Josh walked over and rebooted the poor server. It's nice having Josh in town again, though not just for his fine computer skills.

I need to unpack some more, mow the lawn, and run to the store for basic food stuff. We'll try to put together a little movie of our activities and post it here.

Well, I just rebooted our main work computer,...

June 14, 2007 by Adam in Family

Well, I just rebooted our main work computer, so I'm twiddling my thumbs for a few minutes while it comes up. Since today is my last day at work before the vacation, I've declared it Mocha Thursday. The sweet elixir is bubbling away next to me on my desk.

I had the kids to myself last night while Jamie went out to Angie's. I decided it was a movie night, so the kids and I went to Flicks and Picks, returning with Deja Vu for Sam and I, along with Polly's World for Emma. There were also a bunch of $1 used movies that I snapped up. Catwoman, even for $1, stayed on the shelf.

Tomorrow is the big day, packing, having lunch with my mom, and getting ready for the trip. I'm excited to have so much leisure time. Maybe I can actually be lazy for a change.

Well, adamandjamie

June 11, 2007 by Adam in Family

Well, is back from the dead, after a night of being off the Internet. I think my old DSL modem gets overly warm sometimes. I left it off overnight and everything seemed fine this morning. Time to buy a new modem.

The kids have only a few more days of school this week, and then we're all off to Bend. It'll be nice to be away from it all, hanging out with the kids and playing outside. Eagle Crest is a golf resort, though fortunately there's a pool and some hiking trails. Maybe we can load up Sam's bike and teach him to ride.

Rumor has it that Sam's cousin Josh is returning to Oregon with his family. Dave mentioned it in passing to Jamie, though I know little details beyond that. Josh used to walk to our house after school when he lived here, playing with Sam and generally entertaining us. We're awful fond of him.

Last night Jamie and I went to Bel Ami and sat by a fireplace, chatting away. It was nice to sneak away and just visit, something that seems a rarity these days. We discussed frivolous things, such as Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. We came to the mutual conclusion of "Well yeah, but so what?"

Sadie had her Royal Tenenbaums birthday party...

June 09, 2007 by Adam in Family

Sadie had her Royal Tenenbaums birthday party last night. It was quite the event, reenacting various scenes from the movie. Seraph in particular looked great in her role. The kids and I wore our red track suits and I'd periodically yell "Emergency! Emergency!" in my role as Chaz.

Unfortunately I had pretty horrible allergies and everyone fussed over me. I went home, took a bath, popped some Advil, and went to bed. This morning I'm much improved, though perhaps my arsenal of allergy medicine helped. And the mocha, a real one this time.

I just finished my morning coffee drink, whic...

June 08, 2007 by Adam in Family

I just finished my morning coffee drink, which was annoyingly enough not an actual mocha. The coffee lady put in some weird sugary stuff which wasn't to my liking. Curse you, coffee lady! Fortunately the caffeine was just fine.

It's been a whirlwind couple of days. On Wednesday, I spent the day with Sadie. In the morning we spent way too much time with her and my dad at breakfast. They chatted about helping the underprivileged, that common bond they both share these day. After breakfast, mom, Sadie, Janet, and I all went shopping for costumes. Sadie's having her Royal Tenenbaums themed birthday party tonight. The kids and I ended up with red track suits. Afterwards we made jam, recorded Sadie's voice for my game, and played with the kids. It was a great day.

Last night was the carnival at Sam's school. Sam held his own in the squirt gun arena. Emma got her hair colored and ate bubblegum snow cones. I sneezed at the allergies.

Today the kids are at school and I'm trying to catch up with things. I ended up volunteering myself as an administrator for a new system, so my life should be rather exciting over the next few days. Yippie.

It's Sunday afternoon

June 03, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Sunday afternoon. Sam's stalking about in a Death costume, while Emma convinces him to dance about. With Jamie in Portland, it's been a rather full and exciting weekend.

We did our usual Friday swimming routine, with Emma nearly falling asleep in the parking lot as we went in. She perked up, had a good time, then pined for Jamie as she took an hour to go to sleep.

On Saturday we had a hearty breakfast, went to the library, munched at Humble Bagel, played at the park, hosed the kids off in bathing suits, and went to my dad and Yayoe's for dinner. Today we had breakfast with my mom, watched movies, and played until Jamie returned, right in the middle of typing this.

As for the rest of the day, I'd like to sneak in some alone time. Jamie's returned with various antiques from her grandmother's house. Emma was trying on clothes that Ray got for her.

I just finished the last of my mocha

June 01, 2007 by Adam in Family

I just finished the last of my mocha. I'm chomping down on carrots and trying to fix a weird computer interface issue. After scratching my head for a long while, it turned out someone had just turned off the job that's supposed to move data around. Oopsie.

The kids and a great time in the backyard last night. Sam did his job for the day and I got them into their swimming suits. Then they chased each other with a hose, getting wet and having a great time. Eventually we moved to the front yard and discovered every neighbor kid had the same idea. I think I counted seven kids playing with hoses, squirt guns, and slip-n-slides.

Today's the big day for the kids and I. I have the weekend pretty planned out. Tonight is getting movies and going swimming. Saturday is the library, Humble Bagel, and dinner at my dad and Yayoe's house. Sunday morning is breakfast with my mom and hanging out unti Jamie returns. I'll try to schedule a little fun in there somewhere.

It's been a fine week so far, very warm and sunny

May 30, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's been a fine week so far, very warm and sunny. Last night the kids broke out the giant chalk from Emma's birthday and proceeded to make a huge, colorful mess on the patio. Jamie gave me evil eyes in the morning for permitting such an activity.

Emma's birthday party was a success, despite ...

May 28, 2007 by Adam in Family

Emma's birthday party was a success, despite the weather. Everyone in the world seemed to come, from Emma's French teacher to Seraph, Robbie, and Isabell from Portland. Emma was gleeful about the loot and spent the day announcing that she was four to everyone. She does seem so grown up.

Saturday went well, with a hearty breakfast and going to the library with Emma. I ran into Jason and Bridget, who are expecting a second daughter. It's strange running into old friends, and they seem pretty much exactly the same as always. Sam and I hiked in the afternoon, but generally took it easy.

Sunday was spent preparing for the party and generally hanging out. Jamie gave me lots of time to myself, perhaps to balance going to Portland next weekend. It was luxurious to putter around doing my own thing quite so much.

As for today, I'm hoping to continue my laziness. Somewhere in there I want to go to a movie with Sam. Good times.

It's Mocha Friday and I'm cheerfully sipping ...

May 25, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday and I'm cheerfully sipping away at that wonderful beverage. It was another gorgeous day, riding in to work with just a t-shirt.

I took Sam and Emma bike riding at the park last night. Emma lasted maybe 60 seconds. Sam's still learning, so it involved a lot of getting up, falling down, and repeating. Fortunately he's very tenacious, if not very good at balancing yet. I also ran into a woman I knew in high school who was there with her kids. It strangely made me feel old, a long ways from the kid who wandered the hallways of my old school.

I'm horribly excited about this weekend. The kids and I go swimming tonight, I plan on hitting the library tomorrow, and we've got Emma's birthday party on Sunday. I'm also thinking of taking Sam to see the new Pirates of the Caribbean movie on Monday, so if anyone wants to come along, let me know.

It was a beautiful ride into work today, all ...

May 23, 2007 by Adam in Family

It was a beautiful ride into work today, all the flowers in bloom. I hardly needed my windbreaker as it was so warm.

The week has gone along nicely, with not much excitement. On Monday, Jamie went bowling with Victoria, coming back a tad late, but having a great time. Sam's been getting ready for his presentation on Wolverines at school. I helped him make a "3D Diorama" (when I was a kid, we called it "stuff glued in a shoe box"). Emma is starting to get birthday presents, including a dress from Angie that she wants to wear all the time.

The weekend is slowly drawing to a close

May 20, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend is slowly drawing to a close. We had a great Friday, though I suspect Sam scraped his head on the bottom while swimming. No one noticed anything until the next morning, when he woke up looking like Harry Potter.

On Saturday, Jamie made a wonderful breakfast of pancakes and sausages. We drove to the library and headed off to Saturday Market. The kids liked all the odd things there, from Dreamcatchers to home-made honey. Afterwards we hung out at home, with Jamie and Sam picking up a plastic weasel for a school project.

Unfortunately, Sam tossed his weasel into the bushes upon exiting the car. We spent over a half an hour looking for the thing, finally giving up and making him get a new one with his own money this morning. A cheap lesson, as it goes.

There were other high points, like making bread with Emma. Jamie made baked beets, of all things, and it was surprisingly tasty. Good times.

Mocha Friday, yet again

May 18, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday, yet again.

It's been a good week and I'm loving the spring weather. Last night I mowed the yard, some simple manual labor to ease my brain. Afterwards, Emma threw about clumps of cut grass like a flower girl and Sam rolled about on his back. What a quirky family I have.

I think we're mostly taking it easy this weekend, a short lull between trips, birthdays, and vacations. I really want to take the kids swimming tonight and go to the library tomorrow. The older I get, the more I come to cherish these little traditions. I'm sure I'll start hiking my pants up to my waist and telling the neighbor kids to get off my lawn any day now.

Our lovely Portland trip is coming to an end

May 13, 2007 by Adam in Family

Our lovely Portland trip is coming to an end. The kids just came home from lunch with the grandparents. Jamie and I drove to downtown Portland to have dinner at Mother's and go to Powell's. It was great and I felt very cosmopolitan.

Yesterday we mostly puttered about, the kids doing fairly well on the drive up. It was leisurely, playing in the backyard or fiddling with my computer (which is a required packing item, like toiletries). Emma loved trying on all the various princess dresses in grandma's dress-up box. Sam and Judy played with toy soldiers and pirates. It's all good.

We made it up safe and sound here in Portland

May 12, 2007 by Adam in Family

We made it up safe and sound here in Portland. Emma got out the princess dresses. Sam and I played various sports in the yard. Dinner has been served, I'm tired, and hope to take it easy for a couple hours.

It's Mocha Friday, though the last of my frot...

May 11, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, though the last of my frothy drink is long gone. I was up at 4:30 this morning for some weird reason, though I wasn't truly awake until recently. I rode to work in a vague haze, fortunately arriving at the right spot.

We're heading up to Portland as soon as I get home today. I'll be leaving early so that we can drive up. I think I have a breakfast date with Seraph and her crew, which should be fun. I got to see her house on Google maps, though I suspect it looks bigger in person.

Last night was Sam's last soccer practice. His last games are this weekend, which we'll sadly miss out on. There's a tradition that the last game is parents against the kids. Like last year, I carried Emma on my shoulders the whole time. She laughed and giggled, cheerfully running her muddy hands through my hair. Some of the parents were a bit too serious, leaving a trail of tiny bodies in their wake. Though we were twice as big as the kids, their elbows are at groin height, as I found out the hard way. All-in-all, it was a fun evening.

The week is slowly moving along

May 10, 2007 by Adam in Family

The week is slowly moving along. I'm starting to get excited for our weekend Portland trip and visiting Seraph and Robbie's new house.

Jamie and I had a fairly low-key date night, basically staying home and watching the BBC show Coupling. I've decided it's the funniest television show ever.

I did have the kids for a little before my mom arrived. The kids were wild and wacky out in the backyard. I gave them a bit too much freedom and they both ended up drenched in mud. Emma in particular was completely soaked, a huge splash from Sam causing her to have her face coupletely muddy and gross. Needless to say, showers and a stern look from Jamie followed.

I'm back at work after a lovely weekend

May 07, 2007 by Adam in Family

I'm back at work after a lovely weekend. The bike ride in was nice as well, warm and sunny with all the flowers in bloom. I'll miss my bike rides after work moves across town.

We didn't do anything terribly important this weekend. Sam's on the mend and went to both his soccer games. The kids and I hung out quite a bit, going to parks and playing in the basement. Sadly I missed swimming and next weekend we're out of town. Maybe we can go out during the week some time.

Emma took a picture of me during Sam's soccer game this weekend. We were out in the sun, and very hot. I think I got a little pink, even through the sunscreen.

I've downed my Friday Mocha and am feeling so...

May 04, 2007 by Adam in Family

I've downed my Friday Mocha and am feeling somewhat caught up after my trip earlier this week. There's still things on my "to do" list, but they're not as pressing as yesterday's frantic catch-up.

Sam was sick last night with some stomach problem, though he recovered soon enough. Towards the end of the evening he and Emma were leaping from the stairs on to the Foof. I took a few in-progress pictures to preserve the moment.

This morning Jamie was up early. Evidently Sam had an ear ache, so she stuffed him full of Tylenol. He may stay out of school if he's feeling lousy.

Tonight Jamie and I are going out to dinner and tomorrow is Sam's soccer game. I'm not sure if I'll be able to take the kids swimming, which is one of my favorite activities for the week. Next weekend it looks like we're going to Portland, though I'm not sure of our plans there.

All-in-all, it's nice to be back home.

I'm back home

May 03, 2007 by Adam in Family

I'm back home. Emma and Sam gave me a huge hug upon my return. I got to tuck Emma to bed last night and chat with Sam for awhile. Sam got an Academic Excellence award at school. Jamie seemed happy to have me back, in her normal subdued way. All is good.

The weekend has come and gone

April 30, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend has come and gone. Soon I'll be headed out to the airport for a few days of business travel. Emma gave me a big kiss farewell and Jamie took the kids to school.

The weekend seemed quite busy, especially for Jamie. Her dad and Darrel came over to deliver a new bed frame to us. Then the two of them stayed glued to the television all day watching football. I seemed to spend a lot of time with the kids, starting with taking Emma swimming Friday night and going to soccer practice Sunday evening. I wasn't watching them the whole time, though it seemed that way on occasion. Fortunately they're good kids.

It's Mocha Friday, though the last of that de...

April 27, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, though the last of that delicious elixir is long gone. Work is pretty busy as usual, with lots of little things vying for my attention.

Emma was having fun with Jamie's iPod last night, rocking around the house. We spent a lot of time together last night, playing soccer in the back yard, examining our garden, and playing with Flubber. Sam was a little sick, perhaps from allergies, and didn't go to soccer. Today he's staying home from school too.

Hopefully everyone's feeling better for swimming tonight, as we haven't gone for awhile. Sam has a game Saturday, which I'll probably take the kids to. Saturday night Jamie has tons of social events, so I'll try to do something fun with the kids.

Next week I'm out of town on business. I'm not particularly happy about it, but that's the way it goes. For some reason, people at work feel it's useful to all get together a couple times a year. Group hugs or something.

It's hard to believe that it's Wednesday already

April 25, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's hard to believe that it's Wednesday already. Life seems to blur by sometimes.

Sam had soccer practice last night, and Emma was out catching tadpoles as usual. She was pretty tuckered out, falling asleep in the car on the drive back.

The kids have had a bit of a rough week. Emma had growing pains for a couple nights, coming to our bed with her legs hurting badly. Last night she slept in her bed the whole night, which is a good sign. Sam got hit by a kid on stilts at school, making his lip swell right up. It looks almost normal now, but it was pretty ugly for a day.

The weekend is slowly drawing to a close

April 23, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend is slowly drawing to a close. It was pleasant and low-key, with very little important things happening. Emma was sick on Friday and so we opted not to go swimming, instead hanging out at home and taking it easy.

She felt better Saturday and we went to the library together. It's always a treat taking Emma anywhere and everyone always smiles at her. We returned to show off our loot, then headed off to Sam's soccer game to get way too wet. Later that night Jamie went to work and to meet Pat at Steelhead. The kids watched a movie and then proceeded to try to trap me and tie me up in the basement.

Today Jamie whipped up Dutch babies in the oven, which Sam had forgotten he didn't like the last time around. Everyone loved them so much that we all had seconds (or fourths in my case). The day was leisurely, with a trip to Hendrick's Park, a bit of shopping, and a walk over to Grandma Sue's to deliver soup. It's days like this that make it all worthwhile.

Mocha Friday, and a busy morning to boot

April 20, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday, and a busy morning to boot.

Last night was Sam's soccer practice. Emma spent the entire time catching tadpoles again, bringing them home to dump in our little porch pond. Sam's coach went bonkers and kept the kids way past the end of practice. After twenty minutes, I grabbed him and we headed home.

Emma had a touch of a cold yesterday, so Jamie kept her home. Sam brought home his homework, which was nearly perfect and often quite funny. It was fun helping him do his first post on this site this week. My boy's growing up.

We have swimming tonight and a game on Saturday. Busy, busy.

Wednesday already

April 18, 2007 by Adam in Family

Wednesday already. I got myself a medicinal mocha this morning as I was feeling a little under the weather. Jamie reported that she was feeling a little feverish, and I suppose it got passed to me. In any case, I feel fine now, if a little tired.

Emma came to visit me at work on Monday, which was a rare treat. We wandered about, looking at my cubicle and finding cool places in the hospital. She was extremely polite and even sweeter than normal.

Tuesday night was Sam's soccer game. He played incredibly well, scoring one of the three goals of the evening. It was also pouring rain, making everyone quite soggy. What was really strange is that he didn't want to go, getting a little frustrated with a Wii game he was playing.

All-in-all, things are doing fairly well.

The weekend has come and gone

April 16, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend has come and gone. It was rather pleasant on the whole. Friday night the kids and I went swimming. Sam's a pretty good swimmer at this point, doing laps across the long end of the pool. Emma's okay, other than that pesky "breathing" thing. At one point she went in without catching her breath, swallowing and then throwing up some water. Poor kid.

On Saturday Sam had a soccer game, so Emma and I watched him play. He did remarkably well, as did his whole team, and ended up pretty exhausted at the end of the day. Later on we had the Musgroves over and the assorted kids played together.

Sunday I took the kids to the park, where they got exceptionally wet and sandy. Then it was Humble Bagel for lunch, home for movies, and puttering around for the rest of the day. Emma and I made some great whole wheat bread. Jamie and Emma made a little wildflower garden in front. Later in the day we went for a family walk around the block, a pleasant end to a fine weekend.

Mocha Friday

April 13, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. I just downed the delicious treat and have switched over to carrots. There's no comparison.

Well, at the risk of turning this site into an "Emma the Naturalist" blog, yet again I watched Emma catch tadpoles during Sam's soccer practice last night. She's got that Miller/Mellor obsessive behavior for sure, tromping through the mud to scoop them up and cheerfully show them off to me. She was quite a big girl, going up and down the muddy banks.

Of course, she did slip a few times and we spent the last twenty minutes of practice in the car. I stripped off her jacket and pants, wrapped her in a blanket, and we listened to the radio and watched Sam play.

The weekend is creeping right up on us, as is Sam's first soccer game. I'm hoping to go swimming too, sometime. Maybe tonight.

The week keeps on moving on

April 12, 2007 by Adam in Family

The week keeps on moving on. It's a dreary sort of day today, and Seraph's cake is starting to run out. I shall miss it.

Last night Dave and Kirsten watched the kids while Jamie and I continued watching BBC's Coupling. It's hysterically funny and I wish we had more time to watch. I remember back in the day when we'd watch a couple episodes of Twin Peaks each night when we were first going out. Ah, those were the days.

Tonight is Sam's soccer practice, and it's likely I'll spend the evening watching Emma catch tadpoles. Such is the way of fatherhood.

Easter Sunday has come and gone, my mother's ...

April 10, 2007 by Adam in Family

Easter Sunday has come and gone, my mother's house filled with the smell of cooking and dozens of people crammed into her living room. The kids had fun playing with their cousins and I had a great time chatting with my sisters.

Monday was a little weird at work, with things being so busy that I didn't eat lunch until 2:30 pm. Dinner was tasty, with Jamie making mushroom soup and rice pudding for dinner. If she ever goes back to work full time, my tummy will cry.

It's Easter Sunday and the kids are having a ...

April 08, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Easter Sunday and the kids are having a great time playing together this morning. They had fun with their Easter egg hunting. Emma in particular has been waiting a long time for the festivities to begin. Saturday was fairly low key. In the morning we went shopping and snacked at Humble Bagel. Later Emma and I went for a long walk to Flicks and Picks. It was quite the workout for me, walking for nearly an hour with Emma in a back pack. Fortunately she was great company and very chatty. As for today, we're waiting for Isa to come over and I'll take them over to the park to play. Later in the day we'll go to my mom's for a grand Easter dinner.

It's Mocha Friday, though I still have anothe...

April 06, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, though I still have another hour until that delicious elixir is mine. I had a funny situation at work where I got the final specifications for a project on Wednesday, started work yesterday, and learned they want guarantees that it'll be completed in four days. Silly customers.

Last night was yet another soccer/tadpole evening. This time we took tadpole catching gear and scooped up quite a few. Towards the end, she became quite adept at catching them with her hands. I don't particularly mind muddy little girls, and by the end of the evening Emma was certainly doing her part. We scrubbed her squeaky clean just in time for dinner.

As for this weekend, it's Easter festivities galore. Tomorrow is painting eggs and then Sunday is the huge family gathering. Fortunately it's also Russian Orthodox Easter, so there'll be vodka.

It's soccer season again

April 04, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's soccer season again. Sam was running about with his friends tonight, while Emma busied herself poking at tadpoles with a stick. The lure of a muddy ditch was quite strong, though Sam resisted unlike some of the other soccer players.

The week has been going well so far. Work has been busy, but also kind of cool. I've been redoing an old application with our new stuff, and I'm excited to wow the customer with it.

Jamie tried hard not to do anything today, her first few hours of not watching kids in nearly two weeks.

When I got home today, Sam was proudly showing off a massive jewel. Sadie has been putting him through a grand treasure hunt and I suspect this was the pinnacle. He's also been playing the latest Tomb Raider game, so he's primed for treasure seeking these days.

The family's back

April 02, 2007 by Adam in Family

The family's back. They arrived Saturday afternoon, with me eagerly running outside to the car, only to find that Sam was eagerly running inside to find me. Everyone was pretty tired from their car ride, especially Jamie. The kids and I put in a lot of play time and taking it easy.

On Sunday, I took the kids out to Amazon park to catch bugs in the swamp. After I cleaned up most of the mud, we went to Humble Bagel where Sam put away a ton of food. We spent most of the afternoon at home. Sam did a great job making treasure hunts for Emma and I. In the evening, we all went out to Ambrosia, where Emma wowed the other diners with her Barbie princess shoes.

All is well again in the Miller-Mellor household. The kids go back to school tomorrow, having a final day of rest. Soccer starts tomorrow, so I'll probably be running about outside with Emma quite a bit in the weeks to come.

Sweet, sweet mocha Friday

March 30, 2007 by Adam in Family

Sweet, sweet mocha Friday. Spring is here, there was a beautiful sunrise on the way to work, and that delicious espresso treat is sitting at my desk. Life is good.

I think Jamie and the kids are coming back today, but I'm not quite sure. I think her plan was to stay as long as they were having fun, so it could be any time over the next few days. It's been strangely busy while they're away. Last night I went over to my dad and Yayoe's for dinner, chatting for endless hours about computers, model boats, manufacturing, and financial stuff. Somewhere in there we managed to get a hug in too.

It'll be nice to have my family back. The house is far too big for just little ol' me. Plus I miss playing with the kids and Jamie's deadpan humor.

I just got of the phone with Emma and Jamie, ...

March 28, 2007 by Adam in Family

I just got of the phone with Emma and Jamie, who called to check up on me. Perhaps they were listening for party noises in the background or something. Surprisingly enough, I was at my computer, working on for Sam.

They're doing well. Emma talked about the foam toys they got at the aquarium. She also mentioned that she was a little afraid of the shark and octopus. Sounds like they're having fun.

I'm home alone, knocking about in this big, e...

March 26, 2007 by Adam in Family

I'm home alone, knocking about in this big, empty house. Jamie and the kids are still at the beach, enjoying the sun and surf while I head back to work tomorrow. It's quite odd having everything be so silent. I'm not quite sure what to do with myself. The beach was overall pretty fun, though it started a bit rough. I got deathly ill the first day, ending up groaning and stumbling about until returning to bed and sleeping for two solid hours. Later that day I felt better and by nightfall I was fine again. Strange. The weather was great today, and not too shabby the day before. I went off on several trips to the beach with the kids, exploring various driftwood structures, making sand castles, and so on. When we were at the beach house, we ended up playing a ton of different games. Before I left, I got to be Emma's monster, chasing her about the house. Finally, it was time for me to go, driving back with Dave and Kirsten. I unpacked, went shopping, fed the fish, and generally unwound. Now I'm heading to bed early in this strangely silent house.

Mocha Friday

March 23, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. I just have to hold out another hour until that delicious treat is in my hands.

Last night was a little crazy around the dinner table. The kids were tired and Emma in particular was grumpy. Jamie and I had a little tiff around when exactly I was leaving work so we could go to the coast. Sam was probably the only one who was generally cheerful.

With luck, that'll all change when we head out to the coast this weekend. I'll only be there for a couple days while Jamie and the kids stay most of the week. It'll be weird having time alone in the house. I'll keep the booze and loose women to a minimum.

I'm trying hard to get things together at work. Yesterday was strangely productive, getting several major projects to a semi-completed state. We have one person out sick and another just had a baby, so it's feeling like I'm covering a lot of bases. Still, it's a fun job and I can't imagine anything else I'd rather be doing.

It was pretty cold today

March 21, 2007 by Adam in Family

It was pretty cold today. I scraped the frost off of Jamie's car before I rode to work today. That led to a "You're my hero" phone call from her later on.

Emma's had a cold all week, nothing horrible but she sniffles and whines from time to time. Jamie's kept her out of school, which makes Jamie's life a little harder. I think she's got a touch of a cold herself.

Last night Jamie hung out with Victoria and I had the kids to myself. We ran around the basement for awhile, ate dinner, and went out to the Zenon for dessert. Sam likes the ritual of it all, I think, getting more into his Italian soda than his chocolate cake. Emma was a cake eating machine, totally focused on shoveling each morsel down her gullet.

It was a good day yesterday

March 18, 2007 by Adam in Family

It was a good day yesterday. Jamie made delicious challah French bread, coupled with my tasty mochas. Emma had her last ballet class, so she pranced about with the other pink tutu-wearing girls while Sam and I played Frisbee outside. The kids and I then went to the pool where we all had a great time. The afternoon was quiet and then we headed to Dave's house where he and Kirsten made a tasty dinner for us. I also snuck in a library trip somewhere in there, returning with video, computer game, and literary treasures.

Jamie started semi-working again, helping one of the mom's at Emma's French school with her business. She's mostly doing bookkeeping and office organization, but Jamie's remarkably perky about it. Hopefully she can balance her various responsibilities and still help out. Most likely it'll only be a few hours per week. We'll see how it goes.

I just saw one of the rarest natural phenomen...

March 16, 2007 by Adam in Family

I just saw one of the rarest natural phenomena this morning, a circumhorizontal arc. I was walking back from coffee over the sky bridge and noticed a horizontal rainbow in the sky. The sun was just rising, it was cold and hadn't rained, evidently the right conditions for a rainbow to appear in the sky. I had just read about it last week, so I knew what it was immediately. Very cool. I did a very frivilous and fun thing yesterday. I bought the domain name Sam and I made a little movie and I put together several pages that show off my cool web skills. My favorite so far is the comic, where you can arrange the words for other visitors. I may have to switch out the comic image itself with one a bit more tame. I wouldn't want Sam to get in trouble for visiting his own web site at school. It is also, of course, Mocha Friday. That sweet, sweet beverage is next to me, waiting. Hopefully it and the rainbow are signs of a good weekend ahead.

Our family was being silly tonight, as usual

March 14, 2007 by Adam in Family

Our family was being silly tonight, as usual. Jamie went to the gym and visited Angie, while I fed the kids. Afterwards she came in and sat down for dinner while I entertained with the infamous Hamster Dance video. Good times.

I had lunch with my mom this morning, which was a fun treat. She seems well and we chatted about how we both share this seemingly genetic trait to dig bomb shelters and stockpile food. We were trying to resist turning her farm into a fortress against some unknown impending disaster. I'm sure the endless cups of Glenwood coffee didn't help much.

Work has been nutty lately, spending way too much time deciding on whether or not certain words in our code should be capitalized or not. Tomorrow I need to hunker down and finish up some of the work that's piled up lately. Busy, busy.

Update: Jamie has requested that I remove the video. Evidently I'm supposed to talk to her PR rep any time I wish her image to be used. Oopsie.

It's Monday morning, feeling earlier than it ...

March 12, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Monday morning, feeling earlier than it really is with the "Spring Back" time change. It's pitch black outside and I guess I have to get used to riding to work in the dark for awhile more.

We had a good weekend, all around. Jamie made an amazing breakfast on Saturday, with scones that were to die for. I snuck away to the library, returned to take the kids swimming, and then John and Natalie arrived for a long play date. Having four kids around seems to be about as much work as two, strangely enough.

Sunday was a bit quieter. We mostly stayed outside to enjoy the weather. I did some work on my bike and rearranged the basement. Jamie and Emma walked with Victoria to the store. Later we all went over to Kirsten's house for dinner, chasing the kids around the back yard.

All-in-all, nothing terribly important happened, other than simply enjoying ourselves.

Mocha Friday

March 09, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. Work is a bustle of insane requests, pouring in faster than I can respond. I have no idea when I'm going to be able to work on my critical projects that had to be done at the beginning of the week. I'll have to summon the mighty power of the Mocha and accomplish everything in a blur of activity. Either that, or I'll just feign death until they reassign my work to someone else.

Emma's French continues to impress me. These days she's teaching me words. Last night I was giving her a bath and she started talking about a "grenouille" while playing with a toy frog. I had to ask, and so she explained how grenouille was a frog. It happens all the time now.

Thursdays are often the day when Sam brings back his homework. I love reading it, as he's so funny and quirky. His stories tend to be fairly outlandish, as if an adult comedian was doing 2nd grade homework.

The weekend looks pretty busy. We've got playdates for the kids, the Home and Garden show, swimming, a library trip, and more. Hopefully we can relax in there sometime.

The week moves on

March 08, 2007 by Adam in Family

The week moves on. Not much exciting has been happening in the Miller-Mellor household. We took the kids to my mom's house and walked over to Metropol for bread. Afterwards we ate it with some fresh beer-cheese soup that Jamie made and watched a bit of Coupling. I picked up the kids a little later, where my mom proceeded to burden me with invisible ink, a large bottle of lager, and a Chinese finger torture device. Ah, family.

Work occasionally gets nutty, but I'm starting to feel like I have a handle on the deluge of projects. I'm about to roll out some new security reports that will either make lots of people gleeful that problems are getting cleaned up, or upset at me for making them do extra work.

It was beautiful yesterday

March 06, 2007 by Adam in Family

It was beautiful yesterday. I came home to the kids playing outside in the sun, thinking how strange it was that I rode home in a blizzard last week. After cleaning up my bike, adjusting the brakes, and greasing the chain, the kids and I went over to the park to play around. I could get used to shorts, t-shirts, and running around outside.

Sunday has come and gone

March 05, 2007 by Adam in Family

Sunday has come and gone. It was a pretty good day, the first in awhile where I woke up feeling okay and ready for a hearty breakfast. Jamie kindly made my whole wheat and blueberry pancakes, while I worked on the espresso. We make for a winning team.

I got a second controller for the Wii, so Sam and I put in some quality one-on-one time in Wii Sports. It was surprisingly fun and Sam managed to beat me soundly in most of the games. I think I finally snuck in a win for bowling and baseball, but he beat me soundly in boxing and tennis.

Afterwards, in preparation for our pioneer dinner, the kids and I "worked in the fields". Mostly that meant weeding and spreading plant food about on our yard. Emma rediscovered the wonders of bugs and had fun capturing a ladybug. Eventually Jamie called in Sam to help with dinner while Emma and I went to the park and enjoyed the sun for many long hours. We wore tank tops and still ended up a little on the hot side.

Pioneer dinner was a success, with Sam's biscuits high on my list of favorite foods. Sam had a good time showing off the Wii to Arik, Bob's son. Everyone got into the spirit and wore something pioneer-like. I ended up recycling the pirate bandanna and wrapping it around my neck for the appropriate farmer flair.

I decided to join the YouTube world and uploa...

March 04, 2007 by Adam in Family

I decided to join the YouTube world and upload the short video I made from my camera of my dad's birthday. It's of everyone singing "When I'm 64", similar to my mom's birthday. I may end up putting more clips like this on the site in the future. We'll see how it goes. Yesterday morning was very productive. I replaced the sump pump, with Sam helping gather tools and perform various acts of destruction. I finished my taxes and got those mailed in. I also made bread with Emma, a delicious whole wheat variety that the kids can't get enough of. The most impressive part was that I managed it all while still being pretty sick, writhing around in pain for the first couple hours of the day. My dad's birthday party was very fun, just hanging out with everyone. Sam, Emma, and their cousins ran about getting into only minimal trouble. It seems that Emma is finally big enough to run with the bigger kids. Afterwards, we were all pretty tired, so we took it easy and the kids got a movie and popcorn. Everyone slept really well and I almost feel normal again this morning. After my morning mocha, I'm sure I'll feel like a million bucks.

I had a rough night last night

March 02, 2007 by Adam in Family

I had a rough night last night. My annoying cold turned into a pretty bad headache. On top of that, when riding home I managed to pull a muscle in my back. It was hard getting to sleep and the pain got me up again around midnight. A few Advil later and I was able to blissfully enter dreamland.

I'm still thinking about heading in to work this morning, though I'm not quite as perky about it as usual. Hopefully the magical Mocha will ease away all my pain and worries. Well, as long as I toss in a few more Advil for good measure.

The kids were pretty funny last night. Sam spent too much time watching television or playing on the computer, so he was a little loopy at dinner. I pulled him downstairs for "training", which in this case involved dodging pillows as I swung them at him. Let's just say it was cathartic for me too.

Eventually Emma came down as well and the two of them got into some sort of flying donkey game, riding stuffed animals around the room and being exceptionally silly. It was fun to watch, especially as all I had to do is sit there and pretend my back didn't hurt.

I'm feeling a bit under the weather today

March 02, 2007 by Adam in Family

I'm feeling a bit under the weather today. It didn't help that I felt like I was drinking from the fire hose all day at work. Requests kept coming in faster than I could complete them, all of them unexpected and many of them in the "do it now" category.

Now I'm home. Sam's playing Animal Crossing and Emma's eating a bit of cereal. Evident jumping repeatedly on my belly tired her out or something. Still, she's so cute that I can't resist her.

Emma's has an exciting date at the hair salon tomorrow. She says she wants it short, though I suspect only an inch at most will be taken off. She's a fickle little girl, and typically tells us she wants her hair down to the floor.

I think we're planning on having our Pioneer dinner this weekend, which involves a lot of rustic food, as far as I can gather. I think Jamie opted for the ham instead of the "Buffalo for 1,000" recipe. Fortunately there's going to be assorted bread, potatoes, and the all-important chocolate-chip cookies.

The weekend has come and gone

February 26, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend has come and gone. It was pretty good, ending with Dave doing a redneck impression that nearly made Jamie and I pee our pants.

The highlights were a solo visit to the library, returning with movie and reading treats for all. I got to take Emma swimming without Sam, which was fun. She spent some time swimming around without her floater, doing surprisingly well in the water. She liked doing flips under water and slowly walking forward until the water was over her head.

The only down side was that Jamie and I were both somewhat under the weather. I can tell that I've got a cold, but I haven't been particularly sniffly.

It's Mocha Friday, though I've yet to head in...

February 23, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, though I've yet to head into work to grab that delicious treat. This morning promises to be busy as well, with three sort of go-lives happening at once. I don't like making changes on a Friday, in case I make a horrible mistake and it gets paged out over the weekend. Hopefully these changes are pretty benign.

I took the kids swimming last night, after playing in the basement for an hour or so. Sam got a little upset that I wouldn't go along with his "airplane crash in the jungle finale", but I was getting play-pretended out.

After swimming, I whipped up pancakes and sausages for a quickie dinner, then helped get everyone to bed. Sam's started in on the fourth Harry Potter book, and will likely finish the fifth one before the movie comes out. I'm betting he'll finish the sixth before the last comes out too.

I can't remember what's going on this weekend. Dave's got a birthday. Jamie's off to do something with Emma's teacher tonight. I'm guessing there will be the usual library and swimming runs. Should be fun.

Well, Jamie couldn't get a babysitter last ni...

February 22, 2007 by Adam in Family

Well, Jamie couldn't get a babysitter last night, so it looks like we'll have to test the "Blondes have more fun" theory some other time. It's been a pretty busy week for Jamie, with gym and haircut on Tuesday, gym and helping at Emma's school tonight, and something I can't remember happening tomorrow night. Fortunately the kids have all been pretty good natured.

Seraph's possible 1st edition Harry Potter find is pretty amazing. Hopefully it'll pan out.

The week keeps moving along

February 21, 2007 by Adam in Family

The week keeps moving along. Sam's almost finished with the third Harry Potter book. After debating how much I'd supplement the book purchase, I taked about the library as a possibility. Though we've borrowed books since he was a toddler, it never occured to him that it would be an option. Perhaps tonight we'll pick up the next one.

Emma's cute as always. Last night she helped me make a salad while Jamie was getting her hair done. I think she ate half the baked tofu while dropping a few crumbs in my bowl to prove she was helping.

Jamie is now very blonde after a visit to the salon. We've got a date tonight, so I guess we'll test the "more fun" theory.

I'm back at work, while the kids get a day ou...

February 19, 2007 by Adam in Family

I'm back at work, while the kids get a day out of school. I think Emma gets a play date today with her friend that moved up to Portland. I'm guessing the kids are also wanting to devour the chocolate pudding pie they made over the weekend.

Sunday was low-key and pleasant. Jamie took the kids to the Pioneer Heritage Festival while I hung out at home. Emma returned with a clothes pin doll and beads. Sam came back with a leather pouch kit that he immediately started sewing together.

As the afternoon moved on, Jamie went to King Estate wineries with Angie, then later went to her house for dinner. Sam went with my mom and Bob to see Bridge to Tarabithia, with dinner afterwards. Emma and I hung out, making pizza together and doing our normal bedtime routine.

After my usual bedtime cereal snack I headed to our bedroom to watch Upstairs, Downstairs with Jamie and rub her feet.

We had a nice day yesterday, enjoying the inc...

February 18, 2007 by Adam in Family

We had a nice day yesterday, enjoying the incredibly warm and sunny weather. I took Emma to ballet while Jamie and Sam practiced baseball. Later Sam got dropped off and we all went swimming. Emma chatted up the other adults while I tried to pull Sam off a foam noodle. Good times.

We later went to the Asian festival, which was fun and crowded. Everyone was pretty exhausted, so we headed home early and took it easy for the rest of the day.

Mocha Friday

February 16, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. Finally.

Home has been a little rough the last few days. My main computer is having problems, which causes me general angst. Jamie is sick and has mostly been resting these last few days. My stomach has been hurting (but seems mostly better today), which makes it not so much fun for me either.

I haven't had a chance to drive my new car around, except back from the credit union where I bought it. Jamie's promised to zip it around town to make sure the battery stays charged. Emma's switching to the booster seat, which should make switching between cars easier.

This weekend sounds busy. I'm going to dinner tonight with Jamie. Jamie's planning a dinner with Pat and a trip to a winery with Angie and Matthew. I'll probably do the normal swimming and ballet routine with the kids.

Happy Valentine's Day to all

February 15, 2007 by Adam in Family

Happy Valentine's Day to all. I stayed home from work to hang out with the people I love. Jamie and I went for a walk, I played with Emma, and chatted with Sam. Good times.

I also bought a car today. After getting rid of my old Nissan Sentra, I purchased a 2005 Nissan Sentra. Since my work is moving across town, a second car seems to be required.

Nothing much else is going on. The kids are watching movies, Jamie's resting due to her cold, and I'm puttering about with my computer.

As for last Sunday, the kids and I hung out until Jamie arrived. We finished spreading bark-o-mulch in our yard. Towards the end of the day, everyone went for a really long walk. We ended up at the athletic field behind South Eugene. Sam ran around the track once, then tried the long jump a few times. Somehow he managed to keep up as we trudged home through the rain.

It's been a good day with just the kids

February 10, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's been a good day with just the kids. Emma had a bit of a problem going to sleep, but still conked out pretty early. She crawled into bed with me some time in the wee hours, waking me up repeatedly as she tossed and turned.

I made a very yummy breakfast, which the kids made appreciative noises at. I had whole wheat pancakes with blueberries inside, along with a cafe mocha. It doesn't get any better than that. The kids had a great time playing together while I cleaned up.

Sam's started this thing where he has to do a little job before he can play on the computer. Today it was helping me spread bark-o-mulch in the garden. Both kids pitched in and had a good time getting fairly filthy.

After that we were off to Emma's ballet class and swimming. Emma was incredibly cute at both places. I had to practically drag them out of the pool as I knew they were starving by then. They both ate like they were starving, with Sam even eating a bowl of soup. Now Sam's friend John has arrived and Emma is watching her Barbie movie. I'm sipping tea and enjoying the moment of quiet.

Mocha Friday, at least in another hour or so

February 09, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday, at least in another hour or so. Emma's got a bit of the sniffles and so she's been a bit grumpy lately. I mostly followed her around last night, trying to keep her out of mischief.

Jamie heads off to the beach tonight with Dave. I'm not really sure what I'll be doing with the kids, as most of my family will be up in Portland helping Seraph move. I'll see if I can come up with a few interesting things to do, otherwise we'll probably just do our normal weekend routines. Swimming, a library trip, and some visits to the park may be in our future.

I had a chance to look at mom's India trip pictures yesterday, and posted some of them in her section. You'll have to go back a bit, like at the bottom of this page. I especially like the one with the elephant, though the monkey takes a close second.

It's been a pleasant weekend all around

February 05, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's been a pleasant weekend all around. Saturday I took Emma to her ballet class, which went okay until she started feeling poorly. The rest of the day we hung out at home, passing on our usual swimming. I snuck a solo library trip in the morning. In the afternoon, Emma helped me make wheat bread and wheat buns. They ended up quite tasty, if I do say so myself.

Today we went to campus while Jamie went to the gym. The kids loved exploring all the odd little places, from the fish ponds at the EMU to the massive atrium of the science buildings. Their favorite was the giant sofa, a pseudo art exhibit that they crawled on to and pretended they'd shrunk. They begrudgingly returned to the hospital with me, where we collected Jamie and went to Humble Bagel.

In the afternoon, Jamie went to Turtles with Sharron while the kids and I played in the backyard. Everyone is loving the sunshine. Emma played in the sandbox while Sam and I played Frisbee. Now the day is winding down and the kids are getting ready for bed. Next weekend Jamie goes to the coast by herself, so I'll see if I can plan some fun things to do with the kids while she's away. Good times.

Mocha Friday

February 02, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. Of course, I'm still at home, waiting for the sun to pop up and head into work. Still, that magical elixir will soon be mine.

The kids don't have school today, so they're coming over to visit for awhile. I think we'll eat lunch, see the flags on campus, and poke our heads in the art museum. I've had a couple people tell me about the flag exhibit, so I'd like to see for myself.

My mom came over last night, bringing more goodies from India for the kids. She and Emma had fun with projects, making funny glasses from pipe cleaners and beads. Sam busied himself with Zelda on the Wii again.

Nothing particularly exciting is going on these days. Emma has ballet again tomorrow, and I'll probably take the kids swimming. Work is busy, but not too bad. Same ol', same ol'.

It was freezing this morning, but the cold wa...

February 01, 2007 by Adam in Family

It was freezing this morning, but the cold was offset by a beautiful setting full moon. I had to stop in awe for a few moments. I'll miss my bike rides once they move my work out to Springfield. Already I'm looking at cars to buy. There's a very practical 2005 Nissan Sentra (to ironically replace my 1992 Nissan Sentra) as well as a 2004 Ford Mustang. I haven't decided if I want to be the cool or sensible dad. Right now I'm leaning towards sensible.

I had the kids for much of last night as Jamie went off with Angie and Victoria. We've been going out on adventures when I return from work, and we ranged all about our neighborhood. Sam picked the final seed from the "golden tree" that was only golden at sunset. He also got some ice that was frozen in the gutter. It's all part of an elaborate druidic potion of some sort. Flying, I think.

When we returned from our adventures, Sam played Zelda on the Wii and Emma helped me make dinner. She's great at chopping tofu and spreading butter on broccoli. I started moving everyone towards bedtime and then Jamie returned to finish the job.

I heard through the grapevine that Sam's cousin Josh might be around next year for school, in an attempt to establish residency for college. Both kids think Josh is the greatest, so that would be quite cool if it pans out.

It was an interesting morning

January 28, 2007 by Adam in Family

It was an interesting morning. We did a massive cleanup and organization push of the basement. In particular, I cleaned up a lot of my books that I'd hidden away from Emma's curious little hands. It's nice to have things feeling put together after a couple years.

Afterwards our family went out to 5th Street Market as a reward, eating treats and playing games. Sam and I played a game of chess. Emma played Cooking Mama on her Nintendo DS. Then we ran around checking out the place, which I hadn't seen since the big remodel.

Somehow we managed to wander over to Autzen Baker Park and chased the geese. Emma found a feather for her dreamcatcher. Now we're back home, taking it easy, and wrapping up the weekend.

Mocha Friday, as usual

January 26, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday, as usual. Not much excitement to report these days. I'm still a little sick, a weird tightness in my stomach. There's a part of your brain that translates physical state into emotion, like if your heart is beating fast, it decides if you should be scared or excited. I've strangely become more aggressive than normal and I wonder if that's why.

There have been funny little moments over the last couple days. Sam and I had a great father-son conversation about what it's like to get older. He doesn't like thinking about it, and having to make his own decisions about everything. I let him know that there was lots of time and we'd be around to help. He's also growing like a weed, and his PJ's last night barely went past his knees and elbows.

Emma is as cute and funny as always. Last night we all pretended to be super heroes and she was "Glitter Girl" for awhile, putting glitter all over her face and hair. Plus she was super-strong and enjoyed throwing me around the play room. Good times.

I'm back at work, after being pretty sick yes...

January 25, 2007 by Adam in Family

I'm back at work, after being pretty sick yesterday. All I really did was try to stay still and play on my computer. I attempted to pitch in with the evening kid watching activities, but I'm not sure I succeeded very well.

It's been a pretty quiet week and will likely be a pretty quiet weekend. Emma starts ballet on Saturday, and I'm the designated "ballet parent". I may take Sam along with me and we'll all go swimming afterwards. Hopefully I feel better by then.

We have news on Bob, much of it rather amazing

January 22, 2007 by Adam in Family

We have news on Bob, much of it rather amazing. He made it through eight hours of surgery for an aortic dissection. Evidently the chance of surviving such a thing is pretty slim, and all the doctors are saying how lucky he is.

I talked to mom and it sounds like he's still unconscious, but they're hoping he wakes up fairly soon. I'll try to keep everyone updated as news comes in.

The weekend went pretty well, with the usual ...

January 22, 2007 by Adam in Family

The weekend went pretty well, with the usual lots of time with the kids. John was over Friday night, and I took everyone swimming on Saturday. Emma and I went out to redeem Seraph's Christmas gift card, returning home with a couple new Nintendo DS games. Cooking Mama was for Emma, and she's been busy chopping vegetables and stirring soup. Trace Memory was for Sam, who's busy unraveling the mystery of Blood Edward Island.

It was so nice out that we actually spent a lot of time outside. Sunday we did some house projects, pulling down an unused telephone wire from the side of our house. I also took the kids to the park, where they ran around for far longer than I thought they'd make it.

Sunday evening, Sam worked hard on his class presentation of Uranus. Somehow we got through the standard Uranus jokes, and he ended up making a nice poster of the planet with various facts. Jamie did a great job helping him out, though it seemingly took forever. Emma was so excited that I had to help her make one of her own, with important facts like "Uranus has 5 moons", complete with an artist's rendering.

We're still waiting on news about Bob, wishing for the best.

We've heard from mom that Bob is in the hospi...

January 22, 2007 by Adam in Family

We've heard from mom that Bob is in the hospital in Portland and it's extremely serious. She has her cell phone if you'd like to call. He's in surgery for heart issues. Hopefully we'll find out more soon.

It's Mocha Friday, though I still have awhile...

January 19, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, though I still have awhile to wait for that sweet, sweet elixir.

The last few days have been pretty uneventful. Jamie went out with Angie yesterday. The kids and I played treasure hunters in the basement. Sam continues to play Zelda on the Wii. Work's been crazy busy. Same ol', same ol'.

In terms of this weekend, Sam's friend John is coming over to spend the night. I have no idea what we're doing, other than the usual swimming and library trips. These days I usually go to the library myself as the kids aren't really into it (they just like the Humble Bagel run afterwards).

Yesterday was fun

January 16, 2007 by Adam in Family

Yesterday was fun. Sam and I went to Hendrick's park to play in the snow. I managed to knock him backwards with a massive snowball, and he immediately wanted me to repeat the performance. Jamie read in Little House on the Prarie how they'd make candy from dripping boiled maple syrup on the snow. She repeated the trick for a tasty treat. I think she's scheming to put together a pioneer meal for all. Angie and her baby came over, mesmerizing the kids as they played with her. Winnie's only five months old, so she's still tiny and cute.

This morning the snows started again, so I bundled up and walked to work. Hardly anyone is here, so hopefully I can catch up on all my work in peace.

It's been a fairly pleasant Saturday, filled ...

January 14, 2007 by Adam in Family

It's been a fairly pleasant Saturday, filled with kids. I was worried the pipes froze, but when I got all geared up to go outside, it turns out it was fine. Jamie made a tasty pancake breakfast and we puttered around all morning.

Around lunch, we went swimming. Emma played with a young woman "with a pierced cheek and belly-button!" Sam and I did a lot of ring catching and playing about. Upon getting home, everyone was starving and exhausted, so we ate and watched movies until Jamie left for her pedicure and dinner out.

This afternoon we expored outside and put some lemonade in containers to freeze into popcicles. Sam had a great time sliding on icy patches. Good times.

Mocha Friday

January 12, 2007 by Adam in Family

Mocha Friday. I ended up brewing my own this morning, one in a normal mug and a second in an insulated one for the walk into work this morning. It was cold and icy, but otherwise quite nice. I'm starting to enjoy my winter walks to work.

I think the kids went to school today, though it was delayed a couple hours. I'm not sure if we'll do more snow playing tomorrow. If it still sticks around, it might be fun to take some sled-like objects and go down a hill somewhere. I probably won't spend too much time outside as the kids tend to get cold pretty fast.

Jamie has all sorts of plans tomorrow, so I'll have the kids for most of the day. We've started going swimming around lunchtime, and might do a park hike in the snow somewhere too.

We saw the first of the snow last night, when...

January 12, 2007 by Adam in Family

We saw the first of the snow last night, when I went to pick up the kids from dad and Yayoe's house. Jamie and I had a very nice date night, cooking and watching Coupling. Coupling is a BBC comedy that's extremely funny, filled with very inappropriate humor. It was perfect for a night away from the children.

This morning I woke up to snow everywhere. School was canceled and Emma was very excited when she looked out the window. The neighbor boys invited us to an across-the-street snowball fight. Emma built a snowman with a bit of help from her parents. Eventually everyone got cold and went in for cocoa.

I walked to work, which took a bit longer than my usual bike ride. Once there, I worked non-stop, eating a quick lunch at my desk. I really need to start being less useful, as I find myself at the center of so many things.

Now I'm back and Emma is watching the Little Mermaid. Sam's off playing with a friend and Jamie's at the gym. Tomorrow is going to be very cold according to the predictions, so I may end up staying home tomorrow.

Update: Here's a short movie that shows off the fun we had today.

The week is rolling on

January 10, 2007 by Adam in Family

The week is rolling on. Work is less crazy, or at least I finally made it through my email inbox. I'm doing some nifty things with the Google search appliance, making the massive quantities of documents and database records more easily searchable.

Both kids were somewhat grumpy last night. I think it's because they were incredibly hungry, putting away massive quantities of food at dinner. I had to send Sam to his room, which I almost never do. His highlight of the evening was this impromptu "training" game where I had him leaping about the playroom onto pillows, avoiding spinning obstacles.

Jamie's coming to work out with me during lunch today. I had to pry her away from her Britcoms with a frowny face, but she's coming along. Tonight we have a date night as well and the kids are going to my dad's house for dinner. Should be fun.

I'm back at work, buried in e-mails and only ...

January 08, 2007 by Adam in Family

I'm back at work, buried in e-mails and only now barely recovering. Jamie made it back safe and sound, pretty exhausted from a full day of travel on Saturday. She had a good time, filled with much relaxation. Sam's mostly over his fever and cold, though he occasionally coughs a bit. Emma continues to be as cute as a button.

Sunday was fairly uneventful, just getting back into the swing of things. We went for a family walk down to Willamette street, the kids filling up on ice cream before the trip back home.

The week continues to be exciting

January 05, 2007 by Adam in Family

The week continues to be exciting. I was all ready to haul Sam off to school, but his whining got to me and I took his temperature just to be sure. It was over 100 degrees, so he stayed home with me while Emma went to her school. I gave Sam some Tylenol, which worked wonders, and took him shopping with me.

After we got Emma, we watched the new Ice Age movie. I then declared it was time to get out of the house, so we went to the Beanery to hang out. Strangely, it seemed almost identical to when I used to do homework there nearly twenty years ago. We played cards, drew, and I got a mocha. Emma was really funny, pretending she was writing in a diary. I fiddled with my camera and captured a short movie about it. Sadly that's all my 16 MB memory card will capture. Jamie has the big one.

Afterwards we explored Down to Earth, the kids enjoying running around the old granary. Then it was back home to make dinner and hang out. Sam continued to be grumpy, so I checked his temperature again and it was still over 100. I ended up giving him Tylenol and later cough syrup when he was still coughing at nearly ten o'clock.

As for today, we'll see if Sam's good enough to get to school. I threatened to send him along unless he was bleeding from both ears. "What if only one ear was bleeding?" he replied. "School," I responded dryly. "What if everything but one ear was bleeding?" "School."

I think I'll do a library run today in hopes of getting in some swimming tomorrow. The kids seem to be doing okay without mom, though they periodically ask when she's coming back. Emma cried a lot the first night, but I guess I'm an acceptable fill-in.

It was another wacky day yesterday

January 04, 2007 by Adam in Family

It was another wacky day yesterday. Sam woke up with a fever of 102 again, but after some Tylenol was feeling normal within 30 minutes. He thought it was funny that the day before he had tried to talk to me by blowing bubbles through his front teeth (he didn't remember a thing). I kept him out of school yesterday and hauled him along to Border's to redeem my gift certificate. The store's wily advertising got to me, and we ended up getting four movies (for the price of three!).

Emma had a fine time at school, despite the fact that I drove by it twice while everyone in the pretended we were in the Dukes of Hazzard. Emma can do a pretty soulful "Yee haw!". Her French teacher is so nice and energetic at later that night Emma and I were exchanging pleasantries in French.

I'm thinking both kids will make it to school today, giving me time to go to the gym. These last few days have been fairly tiring, but pretty wonderful in an odd way. Being woken up at five thirty in the morning when Emma crawls into bed with an "I love you, dad" is pretty nice.

As for Jamie, we haven't heard a peep. The only evidence I have of her existence is the Visa fraud unit calling to wonder why her Visa card is making all these charges in Mexico.

It was a bit rough yesterday

January 03, 2007 by Adam in Family

It was a bit rough yesterday. Sam was really sick, not wanting to do more than watch television. I was reduced to feeding him chocolate in order to get some food in his body. Towards the end of the day, I checked his temperature again and it was close to 103. I'm going to check again this morning, but it may end up being a stay home day for him.

Emma was generally cheerful, which was a good thing since I spent the whole day with her. We went to the park and she had a good time there, though Sam wasn't interested in staying very long. She also seemed to be doing much better with Jamie gone, telling me she was glad mom could have a vacation sometimes. She had a hard time getting to sleep, though, and I'll probably have to wake her up when seven o'clock rolls around so that I can get her to school.

I got a new digital camera yesterday, which is handy since Jamie ran off with my other one. So far, it seems pretty good, though I haven't properly run it through its paces.

Well, Jamie got off safe and sound

January 02, 2007 by Adam in Family

Well, Jamie got off safe and sound. The kids did pretty well that afternoon. Sam's still sick, coughing a lot, but he seemed pretty excited to go have a special dessert on the town. Sadly the Beanery was closed, so we zipped over to the Zenon Cafe for a fancy-shmancy dessert of cheescake, a decaf Mocha, and a vanilla Italian soda. Emma loved the lemon cheescake.

That night, Emma had a bit of a hard time going to sleep, as she missed her mom. I gave Sam some cough syrup to tide him over. He was up again at midnight, coughing away, so I upped his dose and he's still asleep this morning.

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