Saturday, August 6, 2011

Vacation 1, Part 2

Practicing their winks while waiting at In-N-Out
We had the best time at Carol and DB's house! Lots of hanging out, playing in their gorgeous backyard patio (squirt guns, barbies in the fountain), watching fireworks from the boat, trips with Grandma and Grandpa to Fairyland (you can see those fun photos here), hikes with Laurel, and a couple of dinner dates. It was such a relaxing few days before we packed up the cars again and drove to the cabin.

Fireworks from the boat. What a fun night!

We visited the mosaic studio and Maryn made her own piece of art. She had tons of fun and was so proud of her finished work.
One of the murals in the Mission District, San Francisco.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Vacation 1, part 1

We have a pretty exciting summer lined up, and have recently returned from our first second big adventure. I'm a little behind in blogging but I'm going to *try* to get caught up before birthday week arrives (next week! I can't believe it!)

Our first trip - road trip to the Bay Area then a side trip to Yosemite - was precipitated by an invite to my college roomie's Chico wedding reception. After a long day of driving we arrived in Chico and after an hour or two recovering in our hotel room we piled back into the car for the gorgeous wedding. We were able to catch up with some dear college friends before the kids made it clear they were ready to get some sleep :) Andrea, we were so grateful to see you and your handsome and sweet new husband in person, and we look forward to some Paris-Portland Skype chats in the future.



The next morning we met up with the same group of friends for breakfast, then frolicked in a Chico fountain before piling in the car towards our next destination - Grandma's house!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Father's Day

This is obviously a little late, but I can't let the summer pass on this blog without paying tribute to some fabulous fathers.

Smiling with Daddy before Father's Day dinner.
First up on the fabulous Father list is DB. Chris' dad is one of the most gentle, humble and kind men I have ever met. He is an avid outdoors-man, river rafter extraordinaire and a man with a very strong work ethic who has instilled the same quality in his kids. Maryn and Lucy love getting hugs from Grandpa and look forward to Bay Area visits for a chance to visit the boat and check the bait traps. DB, thanks for all the ways you've taken care of us, from fixing our plumbing during your Christmas visit, to taking care of the broken key crisis. We are so thankful for you, and proud to call you Dad!

Next up is my dad, Doug. I have so many great memories of playing catch with my dad in the front yard, or just sitting outside after dinner looking up at the stars. My dad is an extremely hard worker who doesn't do anything half way. He taught my brother and me that it is important to always try our best, that love is not just a word or a feeling but an action, and the importance of following through on our commitments. Maryn and Lucy love going to Grandpa's house to have a popsicle in the heat of summer and make a game of trying to beat him to his special rocking chair :) He has helped me with so many projects, like making and installing the huge chalkboard in our house to painting all of the boards for the desk in our closet. Dad, thanks for being available for me whenever I've needed you, and for putting into practice what you preach. We love you!

Chris and my Dad played golf together with a friend and his dad for Father's Day.  This is before they came home sore and tired :)
And to my sweet wonderful husband, who is the best dad those two crazy girls of ours could ask for. You are the ever-patient one; you enforce rules when you need to, but always with love and grace. The kids look up to you so much. They love it when you play soccer with them in the backyard and always look forward to your homemade pizzas and perfect pesto pasta. They jump to their feet when you get home with shouts of "Daddy's home" that make my heart melt. I love you more each day and never cease to be grateful for all you do for us. We love you!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


July is anniversary month in my family. Today is the eighth anniversary of the day Chris and I said "I do," my parents celebrated 30 years this past July 4th (they like to say they always have fireworks on their anniversary!) and my brother and sister-in-law celebrated the big 5 on July 15th. I know summer is the height of wedding season, so happy anniversary to all the summer lovin' couples! May the coming years hold much laughter and be short on tears (unless they are the laugh-till-you-cry kind) and may you continue to support and bring joy to each other through all the ups and downs of life.

A beautiful wedding on the beach in Santa Barbara, 2006
My lovely mom, wearing my Grandma's wedding dress, and my dapper dad, 1981
And because I'm too lazy to pull out the CD with our wedding photos, here's a little side-by-side look at us in Yosemite on our honeymoon 8 years ago, and at the top of Vernal Falls this year. Maybe a trip to Yosemite will become an anniversary tradition!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Summer randomness

Making a dent in our list of summer fun (notice how the mundane things are left undone...better get to work!)

- Chris and I are both slightly obsessed with The Head and the Heart. And they're coming back to Portland in October! If anyone wants to go with us, let me know.

- Speaking of music, this video is pretty hilarious. I just love punctuation bands!

- While looking back through photos for an anniversary project (8 years next week!) I came across this one that makes me chuckle because a) I do not nor have I ever played the guitar b) Chris plays guitar but not the drums c) This was taken in our first apartment which was a little sketchy, but I love remembering how I tried to spruce it up with candles and flowers d) I have no idea who took this photo or why we were jamming together on the couch. But I love that I have this photo all the same!

- My pile of books from the library is starting to resemble the leaning tower of Pisa. Must read more! Summer favorites so far are Cutting for Stone and Same Kind of Different as Me. Chris is slogging his way through Infinite Jest. Next up on my list are The Wilder Life, the Paris Wife, Jane Eyre, and Sarah's Key (along with the rest of the pile which, lets face it, will probably return to the library unread).

- I am slowly working my way through this sampler by Alicia Paulson. I love the stillness it brings to busy summer days and the kids are enjoying the process, too.

So that's my list of summer randomness. How's your summer shaping up? I'd love to hear about your adventures and what you've been reading and/or listening to, and whether or not you had a punctuation band in high school. Do share!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Strawberry day

A few weeks ago, after lots of waiting and checking, the local farm's strawberry fields were finally ready for picking. We rounded up a friend and also took our favorite little buddy along for a morning full of farm fun, and we came home with a bucket of berries that were promptly consumed (with a few frozen for future summer smoothies). Get ready for a photo-heavy post - I just couldn't help myself with such precious models, and the lovely backdrop of shifting skies and emerald plants spotted with juicy red fruit. Oh, and a rather rusty but perfect truck. And Jess, I promise no berries were consumed by the little guy - only smooshed and smeared. Sorry about the laundry. 

The girls were really excited to have their picture taken near the goat.

Love the fancified friends on the rusty farm truck.

How Lucy really felt about the truck.

Self portrait in headlight  - little dude was on my back!

A cabbage growing in the patch. Mmm...I could eat him up!

I loved watching him explore!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

a day at the beach

One of the unintentional perks of moving here five years ago is our proximity to Chris' family on the coast in Lincoln City. We had Maryn's first birthday party at Aunt Mary's house and we've spent many fun summer afternoons picking blackberries from the bushes that line their driveway. For one reason or another, it had been way too long between visits. And what better excuse to take us back to the coast than a graduation party?

Chris' (second) cousin Tom graduated from high school last weekend. A huge congratulations to him for all he has accomplished thus far, and for the many adventures to come! And also to his parents for raising such a kind, thoughtful, talented son!

While we visited with family at the graduation party, someone mentioned that a birthday party for another cousin was taking place right after at the beach across the street. So off we went to celebrate little G's first birthday where the kids had fun flying kites, playing ball and spending time together. Thanks to Tracy and family for being so welcoming to us at the last minute. We were so grateful for the chance to visit with everyone!
 Great grandpa Jim, S and birthday boy G.

 Aunt Mary and Lucy

 Uncle Steve should have a business entertaining as Donald Duck at kid's parties.

You can probably tell in the photos that what began as a slightly overcast day soon became sunny and simply gorgeous. While we were at the party, someone else made mention of Chris' cousin Craig who operates a charter boat for fishing and whale watching excursions. He had just returned from his last trip of the day and graciously agreed to take us out on his boat for a bit. We even saw a whale not too far from shore and Maryn wins the quote of the day award with her excited exclamation upon seeing her "first ocean creature!"

 Lucy and Steve clowning around on the boat

After all that fun it was time to head home, but not without a quick stop for ice cream bars and some time playing in the sand and waves. It was a perfect day at the coast!