Darn It

May 28, 2010 by Adam in Family

I noticed a hole in my sock this morning. Joanna immediately whipped out a needle and thread and darned me. It was very sweet.

I was a little mopey yesterday, the first of Emma's birthdays that I've ever missed. I talked to her on the phone a couple times, which was nice, and we have a bunch of parties planned this weekend. I kept myself busy yesterday, shopping for vast quantities of food, working on laundry, and taking in the mail. Life feels very full these days.

Tonight Joanna and I plan on making Emma' birthday cake, an elaborate blend of cheesecake and chocolate cake, shaped into a guitar. Hopefully it'll be well received by the girls descending on our house Saturday afternoon. Sunday evening we have a family birthday for Emma and Jenny. Monday is a BBQ of some kind, though I don't know when. Hopefully we can have some time to relax or play outside. I'd love to get Emma practicing on her bike again.

As for me, I'm going to finish my mocha and work on our new Internet site. It feels good to finally be able to fix things after the last of the vendors have been swept away.

Birthdays Galore!

May 26, 2010 by Adam in Family

Last Sunday, Joanna and I made baklava for Sam, his favorite sweet.  She has a tradition of celebrating half birthdays, and this morning we whipped out a half-birthday bakalava with candles, a card, and presents.  He was surprised and happy, quite enthusiastic about this new excuse for a celebration.  He immediately turned some of the money in the card, coupled with his savings, into a new computer game.  Hopefully he'll wear the new socks sometime too, as his current ones are surprisingly holey.

Jenny also has her birthday today, and for a few months we're the same age.  Happy birthday, Jenny!  I'm throwing a family birthday for Emma Sunday night, and you're welcome to come.  I need to send out e-mail invitations, as I've been slacking off lately.

Emma's birthday is tomorrow.  For some reason seven seems so much older than six.  I've arranged for a rock-and-roll themed party for her and her friends Saturday afternoon.  It should be an exciting weekend.

Sam informed me this morning that he actually enjoys school.  He went on to say that it was because they weren't learning anything, but I suspect that he's just gotten good at school and enjoys the things they've been doing in class.  I'm a fan of secretly teaching kids while they have fun.

This morning was filled with children as Joanna and her clan were over last night.  Emma played with Berry and Duncan in the basement while Joanna and I rushed about making breakfast and cleaning up.  Everyone was generally cute and funny, with a few moments of tears when they had to go to school.  Duncan cheerfully offered up his Tears of Suffering for others to devour after he'd settled down.

Crepes and Tricycles

May 24, 2010 by Adam in Family

I'm back at work, the frantic activity at work replacing the frantic activity of home.  Both are pleasant though, in their own ways.

Friday night Joanna and I hit up a gardening store, ate relatively good sandwiches at the Go Healthy Cafe, and turned in early.  Saturday morning I collected the kids and went home.  They'd had doughnuts, which evidently stifled their appetite until noon.  Until then, we played Munchkin and had a great time, with Emma winning in the end.

Joanna, Berry, and Duncan arrived for lunch and we generally hung about the house.  Sam spent much of the afternoon at John's house, with Emma and I collecting him for pizza and Mythbusters.  After the smaller kids went to bed, Joanna, Sam, and I watched Doctor Who to round out the evening.

Sunday morning was filled with crepes, whip cream, and lots of playing.  Sam hung out with Josh for a few hours, and Emma with my mom.  Joanna and I made a special something for Sam's upcoming half-birthday, as well as getting things ready for Emma's birthday party.  Our hot date Friday night will likely involve making cake.

As the day wore down, I tidied up the house and forced the kids to go outside after dinner.  As usual, they complained loudly about going, but had a great time once they were out there.  Sam had the usual Nerf shootout with the neighbors.  Emma broke out the tricycle and rode around like a maniac.

This morning everyone was funny and cheerful, well motivated by leftover crepes and whip cream.

Belated Mocha Friday

May 21, 2010 by Adam in Family

My morning mocha is but a distant memory, though I can still feel its magical powers bubbling through my veins. It's been a good work day, cleaning up vendor messes and generally whipping our new Internet site into shape.

Joanna wasn't up for open mic night, so we saw Date Night for date night. Quite funny. Tonight we're hitting a gardening store and heading out to west Eugene to visit a gluten-free restaurant we've been meaning to get to for ages.

I haven't heard any more from Sam, who is probably on his way to Jamie's house at this moment. I hope he had a good time. I Skyped Emma last night, who told me how she made root beer from scratch at Coyote Kids. I think she likes doing nature things, so hopefully we can do more of that next year.

Kirsten showed up at my house last night, delivering Josh's old bike to Sam. I hope to find some time to get it ready for him in preparation for the summer and next year. It's in pretty good shape and really only needs a fender for rainy weather. I'll see if I can teach Sam some basic bike maintenance too. I have fond memories of replacing bike tubes with the use of two forks (sorry, mom!).

I'm excited to see the kids tomorrow. Emma has asked to plant something this weekend, so I'll try to oblige her. Swimming would be fun too, though I'm not sure I'll get everything ready in time. Both kids are wrapping up the school year, and I'm trying hard to get everything ready for summer. Time flies.

Mid-Week Shift

May 19, 2010 by Adam in Family

Wednesdays are always sea changes for me. The kids are off and I usually hang out with Joanna or get things done at my house until Saturday morning. I've felt a little off all day. Monday night the kids and I went to Roosevelt for orientation, after a quick dinner at home. It was terribly nostalgic. Walking into the library was like a dream, as almost thirty years ago I spent many a lunch hour watching movies like Young Frankenstein. Emma was eager to stay, though tired by the end. Sam seemed a little excited, especially as we hooked up with three other Crest kids. There are at least two others in the neighborhood who are going into sixth grade. Sam left for Outdoor School today, returning Friday afternoon after three days of no-electronics. He's been unhappy about going, so I put together a care package for him: the Munchkin game, another card game, baklava, home made beef jerky, and the Graceling book. Hopefully he'll have a good time, though he told me "If I come back saying I had a good time, I've been brainwashed." I guess I'm crossing my fingers for brainwashing, then. We had Joanna and her kids over last night, a quick meal of quesadillas, followed by bath and bedtime. Emma was sweet, reading her school book to Berry and Duncan. Sam reveled in watching Malcolm in the Middle episodes. Everyone got up surprisingly early and I cleaned, packed, and herded my way through the morning. I think I got everything ready for Sam's trip. Emma was very huggy as I dropped her off to school. It's always odd that I won't see them for a few days. Tonight Joanna and I are visiting an open mic at a coffee house. I may have to indulge in a decaf mocha.

Talent Show Weekend

May 17, 2010 by Adam in Family

I'm back at work, another weekend come and gone.  Because of my work trip, I'd swapped days with Jamie and had the kids Thursday night onward.  Friday afternoon I picked up Sam and Emma from the Musgroves, with Emma returning home with a bag full of worms.  We stopped by Tasty Thai, which has lots of gluten-free food for Joanna.  Dinner was outside in the gorgeous weather, Duncan and Berry playing in the sandbox and running about the back yard.  That night Sam, Joanna, and I watched Doctor Who late into the night.

Saturday was a massive breakfast of oatmeal-yogurt blueberry pancakes for the grown-ups, and crepes and sausages for the kids.  Whip cream has evidently become a necessity as well, even more so than chocolate milk and marshmallows.

Emma and I went to the library with Joanna, Berry, and Duncan.  The newcomers were duly impressed with the library, Duncan remembering having gone there once before with his dad.  We loaded up on Dora books for the small kids, a puberty book for Emma, and a couple funny teen books for Sam.  Emma and I hung out a bit longer to eat bagels and slap the statue out front.  It felt good to have some one-on-one time with her.

The afternoon was pretty low-key.  Sam and I played Sleep is Death, a quirky two-player storytelling game.  He figured it out faster than I did, being the storyteller for three different tales: our first test, Adventures with a Skull, and Jail Break.  Sam has a bit of an exciting-streak, but I managed to turn most of them into comedies.  I later led a story with him, which I'll try to put online.

We wandered down to the park for play, and then had tacos for dinner.  We delayed pizza and Mythbusters until Sunday night as the day was just too full.

Sunday morning was equally low-key.  I took Sam and Emma to my mom's while the rest of us went to church.  I had some time afterward with Emma while Sam worked at my mom's house.  Later the two of us watched the talent show where Joanna, Duncan, and Berry performed.  After saying our farewells, I picked up Sam and we had a quiet evening.  Sam finished his poster.  Emma worked on spelling and helped me go grocery shopping.

The week ahead promises to be exciting.  We're off to Roosevelt tonight for Sam's orientation.  He helped pick his electives and woodworking and reading went to the top of his list.  Swimming and biking were in there too, with debate way down at the bottom.  We'll see what he ends up getting.

Sam's also going to outdoor school along with his entire 5th grade class.  He's not really looking forward to it, so I hope he has an okay time.  I'll see if I can put together a care package of sorts.  Donations are welcome.


Mocha Friday

May 14, 2010 by Adam in Family

My mocha is long-gone, the day feeling very busy and endless projects and tasks clamoring for my time.  It's nice being back after my work trip, returning slowly to the current routine.

I left work early on Thursday going food shopping and getting Sam to watch Iron Man 2.  It was big-budgettastic, with over-the-top special effects and Robert Downey Jr. in good comedic form.  The plot was serviceable, with some subtle digs at the defense industry.  I went home to a cheerful Emma.  She had a good time with the pink feather wig that Summer had given me from the trip.

As for the weekend, I'm going to try to be as low-key as possible in between the various things that are going on.  Joanna and her kids arrive for dinner, which I'm hoping can be orderd from Tasty Thai.  She's part of a talent show this weekend, so she has practice Saturday and is playing on Sunday.  Since she's playing Taylor Swift, I'll bring Emma along for the festivities.  Sam has some homework to finish and has requested that he learn how to program.  The latter may be a more exciting project, and take awhile.  The weather is also supposed to be beautiful, so I'm hoping we can get outside as much as possible.

Mother's Day Weekend

May 11, 2010 by Adam in Family

It's ten o'clock and I'm posting this from a hotel room.  After being up for nineteen hours, I'm exhausted.  Here's the video of our fun-filled weekend:

4:30 a.m. Mocha

May 10, 2010 by Adam in Family

It's crazy early in the morning and I'm soon to be picked up for my ride to Bellingham.  It's one of those face-to-face meeting things, our whole team getting together.  I have a cold this morning, so my enthusiasm about this trip is lower than usual.  Hopefully it'll be a productive few days.

It was a good weekend, overall.  I picked up the kids Saturday morning and we puttered around the house until Joanna and her kids arrived later that day.  I recruited Sam and Emma to help outside with preparing a mushrom growing area behind the shed.  Somewhere in there the kids got wheelbarrow rides, cries of glee filling the yard.  Once Berry and Duncan showed up, it was our traditional pizza and Mythbusters and then bed.

As usual, I rolled up my sleeves Sunday morning to make a massive breakfast of crepes, sausages, and whip cream.  Joanna got her requested ultrasonic jewelery cleaner for her Mother's Day gift, and proceeded to clean everything she could fit in there.  The kids ran about until it was time for church, with Emma and Sam hanging out at my mom's house.  Joanna was having a hard time with back pain that day, which didn't quite clear up until later in the afternoon.  Fortunately she was well enough to prepare and cook the chicken, and peel potatoes while I set the table.

Mother's Day dinner was a hit, with my mom, Bob, Yayoe, John, and Colette chatting the night away.  Emma was a social butterfly, impressing everyone with her ability to hold a conversation.  The kids were enamored with the steady flow of cookies and chocolate mousse that graced the table.  Eventually everyone went home, full and satisfied.  I took Sam and Emma to Jamie's house, where they imparted a long list of presents.  She seemed to enjoy the pottery the kids' painted, our secret getaway from a few weeks back.

I best shave and get ready to be picked up.  My ride arrives soon.  I'll see if I can put together some weekend movies on my drive up.

Mocha Friday

May 07, 2010 by Adam in Family

It's Mocha Friday, though my beverage of choice is but a distant memory. It was a free one today, after obtaining the required ten punches on a card. Free is always tastier.

Thursday evening was a bit of a frantic madhouse, rushing to the library, grocery store, post office, and home to Skype with Emma. She explained how she learned to follow a calf with her eyes clothed in her Coyote Kids class after school. I'm glad she's having a good time doing something a little different. Emma was a little worried she'd miss me due to my upcoming business trip, but I assured her I'd see her on Saturday. Sam also got on briefly to show off his new headphones.

I drove down to Creswell after packing my lunch and clothes for the night, collapsing early to sleep. I think I'm getting a touch of whatever Sam had, as I feel a bit of scratchiness in my throat. Fortunately caffeine and Advil work like a charm.

Tonight we have absolutely nothing of importance planned, other than making dinner and taking it easy. Tomorrow begins the kid and Mother's Day festivities. I have a Mythbusters and My Neighbor Totoro lined up for kid entertainment. Of course, anything is fun to watch with enough pizza to go around.

Mid-Week Omelette

May 05, 2010 by Adam in Family

I drove the kids to school this morning, after fulfilling their assorted breakfast requests. Emma wanted an omelette, which I managed to do quite well. Sam got cheese eggs and waffles, quite disappointed that Emma got the last of the whip cream in her frothed, warm milk.

Sam was really sick for most of this week, with a sore throat that made it painful when eating anything. We had some brief success with numbing his throat with teething gel, but it only worked briefly. Yesterday night he suddenly improved. We had Joanna and her family over for dinner. Sam ate chicken, macaroni and cheese, broccoli, and mashed potatoes. Later that night he had an entire peanut butter and honey sandwich.

There was some excitement yesterday, though. I was about to send him to school, when he went to throw up as Emma got in the car. I think it was lack of food combined with Motrin and vitamins. He perked up later and I left him at home so I could meet with auditors at work. Meanwhile, the SWAT team was called in a few blocks away. I called my mom and Sam hung out at her house for the rest of the day.

Emma has been cheerful and pleasant as always. She's gotten really good at sight reading and has been eagerly reading Frog and Toad to me at night. She also got some makeup and a hairbrush from my dad, presents from his time in Disney World. Soon I was chatting with him on the couch, straight hair and glitter on my cheeks.

As for me, Joanna and I have song circle tonight. I'm hoping to accomplish some miscellaneous shopping and house projects tomorrow. The weekend should be the usual kid-filled happy chaos, with Mother's Day dinner as a tasty finale.

Singing Through the Weekend

May 03, 2010 by Adam in Family

I'm back at work, and the kids are at school. I'm not sure they were thrilled about the latter. Sam still has a sore throat, but I think he's on the mend. The hardest part is getting food in him, as swallowing hurts. I've been making a lot of rich, foamy, warm milk, and other things that have lots of calories and go down easy. Hopefully he'll be better by the end of the week. Friday night Joanna and I went to the Supreme Bean to listen to Ali Losik. She played the piano and ukulele, wonderful jazzy tunes about love and happiness. Coupled with a mocha, it made for a fun night. Sam was dropped off at the house Saturday morning while Emma and Jamie went to King Estate Winery for the day along with Jim, Judy, Josh, Dave, and Kirsten. Sam was feeling so miserable at the time that he wasn't up for pizza and Mythbusters. We ended up having yakisoba and Mythbusters, which worked well enough. I think Berry and Duncan were feeling a little under the weather, as they seemed more tired than usual. They still had a good time playing and running around outside. Evidently Duncan is set on crepes every Sunday morning now. I made gluten-free pancakes for Joanna and I, and while we thought they were delicious, Duncan was quite adamant about his love of pancakes he can roll up. The kids had a good time at my mom's on Sunday. She managed to find some food to feed Sam, and for some strange reason we played marbles on the table upon my arrival. Since the weather was so gorgeous, I borrowed a Frisbee from my mom and we ended up going to the park to play. Emma's gotten really good and we were out so long I got a sunburn. Sam finished up almost all of his research project, Emma's reading a chapter book to me for school, and everyone had a quiet evening together. Emma loves Taylor Swift. I loaded up some songs on her mp3 player, so she's been running around the house singing along.

Older Posts