Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Photo a Day | Week Eight

Week eight. There are 10,080 minutes in every week. I spend about 420 sleeping and at least 3,600 at work or getting ready for work.

The rest of my roughly 6,000 minutes per week are spent on chores, arguing about eating one more bite of , bed time wrangling and television. There's also likely about 100 minutes of really nice hugs and cuddles thrown in to every week which pretty much make up for bed time stalling tactics and hunger strikes.

Here are seven minutes I spent just enjoying life.
Day 50. I was at work last Thursday afternoon and I suddenly had a craving for ramen soup. It has been a good ten years since I've had ramen, so that was weird. I probably would have forgotten about it for another ten years, but when I got home for dinner Kyle lifted the lid on a pot of homemade ramen soup.

Kyle gave the girls each a fork and a spoon and he gave Rosie a pair of chopsticks. Kid was determined to make chopsticks work. Just before I grabbed this photo she used them successfully. We couldn't have been prouder ... or more tickled by her efforts.
Day 51. Magnolia in bloom. Taken after work Friday while I was wearing Kyle's shoes and pajama pants with illustrations of coffee cups on them. What can I say, I've usually totally lost it by Friday.
Day 52. Rosie has been super interested in taking photos lately, so on Saturday I let her use the camera while I sat on the porch. I took this photo of a paper-white to show her how to use the camera. She took 114 photos of the bark dust, but she did manage to grab a few good ones too.
Day 52. A gorgeous Sunday sunset after a visit with friends. It's from my ongoing series cell phone camera with a dirty wind shield filter.
Day 53. My first attempt at the true sport of online shops. Four pairs of nearly identical shoes were delivered to my door step. I picked the one I liked best and will return the rest with no shipping charges either direction. I may have found a way to shop that doesn't make me hate the world.
Day 55. We're out of home brew and microbrews have suddenly become crazy expensive. We landed on a new way to unwind after we dusted off some eight year old tea. It does the trick.
Day 56. We get asked often if the girls are twins. I don't really get it, but we accept that we're going to be asked that. Looking at this photo I almost get it. Plus the sweetness of their little fingers makes me just ache with joy.

Here's to seven really great minutes ... or at least six great minutes. I'm not sure I'd call Day 51 a great moment.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Photo a Day | Week Seven

Week seven already! The days are starting to get longer, which makes this project infinitely easier, though it is still hard to remember to grab a photo. This week has been one of those great sunny February weeks that give one hope for a the dawn of a new season.
 Day 43. Fresh wood delivered to our driveway ready to be new garden beds.
Day 44. From Kyle's collection of crazy day time kid antics. She picked out her own clothes and her own pot.
Day 45. Valentine's Day. We spent the afternoon on Valentine's Day on a quest for a second set of rainbow pots as our gift to each other. We found five out of six and we're still looking for orange. After Ellen went to sleep we watched our wedding video with Rosie. It seemed like a nice way to celebrate the day. She loved it and it was fun for us -- we hadn't watched it since we got it shortly after our wedding.
 Day 46. Kyle tilling in the February sunshine.  This is where the new beds will go. More on that another day.
Day 47. I was driving home the other night and Mt. Hood, or Mountain Hood as Rosie calls it, was just spectacular. I turned down a narrow back road in hopes of capturing it, but my phone couldn't do it justice.  When I turned to look west I saw this great sunset, which was totally worth being a few minutes later getting home.
 Day 48. Our plum tree is blossoming. This branch is actually a branch Kyle pruned off and is lying in a pile of debris bound for the barrel. It decided to bloom anyway and I thought that was nice.
Day 49. When I was checking out the new garden beds from our upstairs window, I spotted this chard. Kyle recently transplanted it from the easement and it's in a bit of shock, but so pretty!

Here's to finding something nice in every day.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Photo a Day | Week Six

Week six ... well, what can I say. I'm a little late getting this posted and I had to rely on Kyle for a couple of the shots, but I do have seven photos to summarize week six.

My work week started with being awoken six times Sunday night to Ellen being sick, which meant getting up six times in the night to mop up vomit. And it just got more exhausting from there. We actually drank the cooking wine at one point. I'm not sure I've ever been happier to finally reach Saturday.

So, without further ado, here's week six.
 Day 36. Campus moss taken with my old phone camera.
Day 37. We took the girls to a basketball game. They enjoyed the game, but also had a good time looking at the fans.
 Day 38. Valentines at the beach.
Day 39. I climbed into the attic to find a blank journal and found a bunch of blanks as well as all of my travel journals. We had fun reliving memories of our Portland to San Francisco bicycle trip and our road trip through Germany and Austria.
 Day 40. Kyle's day time photo collection to the rescue. This girl gets bigger, bolder and more mischievous by the day.
Day 41. My new phone! Unlimited talk, text and 3G for $25 per month from Republic Wireless. I've only had it a few days, but so far it's great. Once I have more time with it I'll write up a more thorough review in case anyone else is interested in not paying crazy sums of hard-earned money for their phone.
Day 42. Another Kyle shot to the rescue. This girl has some serious spunk!

Here's to having week six behind us!

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Coastal Break

Last weekend it became apparent we needed a break. After my being gone for a week our whole family was out-of-sorts. I suggested we take a trip to the beach as a family and Kyle quickly agreed. Since gas prices are so low and hotels are reasonable in the off-season, and we've got a nice amount saved in our "vacation" line in the budget, we decided to stay the night.

We found a great space online with a kitchen, bedroom and access to a pool. It was perfect for an economical getaway. We were willing to sacrifice an ocean view if we could get a kitchen and a pool, but as luck with have it, we got everything.
By the time we got to the beach it was too late to do any hiking or sightseeing (plus I had on bad shoes and it was raining), but we spent a good chunk of the afternoon in the pool.

Rosie is very, very cautious. Ellen is very, very confident. At one point we were both encouraging Rosie and Ellen dove in on her own. She was fully submerged on her own for a good number of seconds and came out smiling. Kyle and I were not smiling. Both girls are in dire need of swim lessons!

After the pool we went back to the room to work on Rosie's valentines for her schoolmates.
Kyle cooked us an awesome dinner of corn chowder with biscuits while Rosie and I worked and Ellen quietly tore apart the stash of games we'd brought along. After dinner we went for a walk on the beach.
It was getting dark and pouring down rain, but we still had fun.
The girls had a bubble bath and then it was off to bed in their own room. This was the first time Ellen has slept outside a crib, but not with us. Seeing the two of them cozy in their big bed sleeping side by side was probably the highlight of the trip. Ellen sleeping through the night was pretty great too. If only we could convince Rosie to make this a permanent arrangement ...

In the morning we got packed up slowly and then headed toward home, with a quick stop at the Tillamook Cheese Factory for a lunch of ice cream and cheese samples.

Until next time ocean...
Here's to a somewhat spontaneous weekend.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Photo a Day | Week Five

The past week has felt particularly mundane as we all try to cope with too little rest and other fallout from my recent absence combined with the worst cold ever. All the more reason to capture a moment in each day ...
 Day 29. I took part of the day off after I returned from Hawaii. I got to pick Rosie up from school. We stopped on our walk home to admire the swifts in the sidewalk ... and our shadows .. and Shakespeare.
Day 30. I was trying to capture a refusal-to-eat-soup-fit, but Kyle coaxed out a sweet smile. Smiles are better than fits.
Day 31. When Kyle returns from the grocery store I always take a moment to give thanks ... for the bounty he brings us and for my not having to go to the grocery store.
 Day 32. Coffee break.
Day 33. When Rosie was smaller she deemed this cupboard "work." Ellen has taken up the tradition. She apparently uses a six-pack container as a briefcase ... very professional, right? We also need t have a conversation about "dressing for the job you want."
 Day 34. Beet starts. I'm not keen on beets, but I'm enamored with their pretty red stems.
Day 35. A share basket item (aka show and tell). Each day an item goes to school and returns with a scrap of tape. We're accumulating quite the collection. I had hoped to photograph one of our many Rosie-labeled rocks, but it went missing before I had a chance.

Here's to all the days running together ... and to the coming weekend ... and to ellipses.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Rosie Chatter

 Our girl continues to delight and amuse...

While looking up at the cupboard where we sometimes keep snacks: "Is there anything in there for grown-ups and vegetarians?"

Nearly every morning, shortly after waking up she screams, "I'm not ready to get up yet!" She does this regardless of whether the rest of us are up or even awake. Shortly after that she usually declares something to the effect of, "There's no morning sky yet."

Over the weekend we had a family coffee break and I gave her the option of hot cocoa or a steamer -- either way a huge treat. She declared she wanted hot cocoa, but Ellen should have a steamer. I ended up getting them both hot cocoa. For hours afterward she was positively indignant that Ellen didn't have a steamer. I think she didn't know what it was and wanted Ellen to be the guinea pig. Because that's what little sisters are for, right?

One day recently she caught me sneaking some chocolate chips. She marched up and announced, "chocolate isn't junk!"

Hmm. A chocolate-loving vegetarian who isn't happy if she can't sleep in ... I can't imagine where she picks up these things.

Here's to our sweet girl as she rounds the bend toward four!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Planting a Rainbow

I've recently been doing some reading on the benefits of certain flowers in the vegetable garden. Normally we keep our focus pretty squarely on edible plants, but a few years ago we had nasturtiums in the garden and it was so pretty we planned to do it every year.

Last year the season slipped by us, but this year we're determined. Armed with notes, we headed out for a Sunday meander through the garden center which, as is normally our way, was more about admiring than it was about buying.
We did pick up three Spanish lavender plants at the garden center. Later Kyle bought a bunch of seeds at a half-off sale. The dahlia was a recent impulse purchase at the grocery store.
We're big fans of the book, Planting a Rainbow. Maybe this year we'll have our own rainbow. That is if we can figure out where we're going to plant everything!

Here's to using using flowers to ensure our garden is a private club for only the best bugs.