Free At Last!

Whaddaya know… Haven’t posted in quite some time again.  I was going to write a couple of weeks ago, but we got snowed in here and I didn’t want it to slip out to the world how very barely I was hanging onto my sanity.  ;)  Believe me, you were spared…be thankful.

So yes, we have been snowed in here for almost exactly two weeks.  All of the holiday parties were canceled for me AND the kiddos, as well as the church services we were going to participate in and my community choir’s final concert and season wrap up party.  :(  Talk about ruining the holidays.  I’m having a very difficult time ridding myself of the “bah…humbugs.”  It was definitely the strangest Christmas I’ve ever experienced, mostly because… well, it just didn’t feel like Christmas.  No caroling, no church, no midnight mass on Christmas Eve, no shopping, no Christmas cards delivered, etc.  And being stuck inside so long and not having our usual routines to count on or friends to share the Christmas spirit with, the days just sort of blurred together, and it was hard to convince myself it was actually Christmas Eve once it finally rolled around.

We ended up having a great time on Christmas Day at Chloe’s though, so that salvaged the strange holiday season in some ways.  We feasted, opened presents, and enjoyed some wassail and each other’s company.  I have some pics up in the galleries, one of random activities in Nov/Dec, and one of primarily Christmas Day.

Setting Out Cookies, Milk, And Carrots

Happy Holidays!?  ;)

Catching Up As Usual

I just posted some pics from October which include hanging around the house, Halloween costumes, and a Zoo Class.  Too tired to write right now so, enjoy!

The Future

I’m not gonna jump on the bandwagon and write a long diatribe about the future of our country here (maybe a quick one, but not long).  ;)  After all, the blogosphere is currently saturated with such posts and no one seems to be saying anything unique.

Instead, I thought I’d share with you the thoughts of a 3 and 4 year old on the matter.  Lindsay brought home a little booklet from preschool, all about the election process, with pictures of the two major candidates, circled in their parties’ colors.  I tried to explain to her that Barack Obama belongs to the Democratic Party and that John McCain belongs to the Republican Party, hence the blue and red, and that this generally means they follow a set of beliefs and values that the rest of the people in their party adhere to.  I told her neither one was necessarily right, but that it was our job to choose which man (and maybe someday, woman) we thought would do the best job for the country as a whole at the given time.  She then asked me which party I belonged to, and I told her that for the most part, I usually vote Republican, but that I’m free to vote for whomever I want in the Presidential Election, even if they’re not in my party, and that I’m also allowed to vote however I want on all of the ballot measures, where we all decide which “rules” will have to be followed.  I told her this was the first time I was voting a primarily Democratic ticket, and also voting for Barack Obama, because, well…  I can’t really sum it up easily.  Part of me really wants to see a change in this country, and I’m sort of morbidly curious as to whether or not the Democratic party can make the positive difference in our nation that they think they can.  I certainly hope so, so fingers crossed.

I still have great respect for John McCain though, especially with how he handled the race in the end, and am pretty disappointed in his supporters for their behavior at his concession speech.  It makes me hopeful though that if someone like me, who has always been a pretty hardcore Republican, can start to listen to those around her and concede that the world may not be as cut and dry as I once believe, that there is hope for those people as well, and that they will open their minds and unite with the rest of the country toward a positive change.

Anyway, back to my story…  So Lindsay asked me early in the day which candidate I had voted for and I told her about Obama.  I also told her it would be very historic if he won because it would be the first time in the history of our country that a black person had been president.  I also told her people have a lot of hope in him and think he can make some great changes in the way the world sees us.  She then spent the rest of the day marching around saying, “Barack O-BA-MA! Barack O-BA-MA!” and asking me every half hour if he was going to win.

At dinnertime, she then decided we should pass around her little election booklet and point to which candidate we wanted to win and say why.  I started, telling her again that I voted for Obama and why.  She then said she was voting for Obama because it would be historic and he’s nice.  Barney refused to comment…because, well, he’s Barney; way to pass up an educational moment.  ;)  Emery “voted” for Obama because he said the “other guy” looked mean and Obama looked nice.

Lindsay then announced she wanted to be black.  Not joking.  :)

Lindsay: I want to be black!

Me: Why?

Lindsay: I want to be a President!

Me: You can’t be black sweetie, and you don’t have to be black to be a president.  In fact, if Obama is elected, he’ll be the ONLY black   President we’ve had.  But you could be the first woman to be President!

Lindsay: I want to be the first black woman president!

Barney and I just laughed and shook our heads…

Needless to say, Lindsay was a little excited this morning when I told her Obama was going to be our new President.  I only hope he’s prepared for one hell of a hard four years, and I hope he and his family remain safe and happy throughout.  And I truly hope he can help move our country forward in a better direction.

This Is What Happens When You Give A Camera To A Four Year Old

Lindsay has developed quite the love affair with my camera and asks to practice with it on a regular basis. I don’t really mind, as it’s not like when we were kids and could waste an entire roll of film on photos of our eyeballs or the floor or up someones nostrils, and have it cost our parents money. The nice thing about digital is that they can obviously take pics of whatever they want, and it can be easily deleted with nothing lost.

I’ve been really surprised at how good she is at actually lining up a shot though. Most of her pics have had almost all of the subject in the frame, and most of them have also been in focus, which is more than I can say for most adults’ photo taking skills! ;)

I recently let her have free reign of the camera here at home, and then later at the park during a playdate with our friends Carrie and Ana. She created quite the photo story of us following a squirrel along the trails. There are also a few pics thrown in that Emery took, and two or three that I took of both of them. Enjoy.

Separation Anxiety Doesn’t Begin To Cover It

It’s been a rough couple of weeks for poor Emery.

One of the only disadvantages I can see to kids having a stay-at-home parent is that they don’t grow up with it being normal to not see that parent every hour of every day.  This was never much of an issue for Lindsay, as she has been such a strong, independent personality from day one.  Dropping her off at school or extracurricular activities has never been a problem and rather, always been such a joy because she jumps into everything with enthusiasm, much like myself.  Emery on the other hand - I knew from the day he was born he was going to have a tougher time dealing with things.  He’s extremely intelligent and a complete crack up most of the time, but also very sensitive, emotional, and stubborn; also much like myself.  ;)  Just like me, he thinks that because he’s made his mind up about something, that’s the way it’s gonna go.  You can see how this might be a problem now that he has started preschool.  I had to pull him out of gymnastics last week because he simply refused to go out there with his class, and what do you do; drag them kicking and screaming to go do something that’s supposed to be fun?

Preschool’s another story though, because he’s gonna go whether or not he thinks he wants to.  It just makes it so hard to leave him every time when he’s distraught and refusing to join the other kids who are quietly writing their letters.  I remember seeing, or hearing rather, the little boys in Lindsay’s class last year throwing fits when their parents would leave, and thinking to myself at the time, ooooh boy, that’s probably going to be Emery.  Why is it always the boys?  Why do boys tend to be more clingy at this age?  I don’t really know, but I know he’s having a hard time.  and I’m having a hard time.  But hopefully he’ll get used to it, and start to enjoy his time away from me and the house.  Let’s just cross our fingers that that time comes sooner rather than later…

Barney’s BBPhoto Stream - Posted By Barney

If you subscribe to the BBPhoto site’s RSS, you’re going to get the daily pictures of me.  And while I think I’m remarkably beautiful, I’m willing to bet most people don’t care that much.  WordPress provides per-tag pages/feeds in addition to the all-in-one, but I didn’t think to mention it last time.  You can view pictures of Lindsay or Emery (obviously with some overlap), or you can subscribe to feeds of Lindsay or Emery.  This will let you bypass the daily Barney, and not miss out on any kid shots.

Going, Going, Gone

Summer’s really over? Already? I think I’m in denial to be honest.

We’re about to jump into our new Fall schedule around here, and boy will things be crazy with two kiddos going to preschool. Lindsay will now be attending the Pre-K class Monday through Thursday, and Emery the 3’s class on Tuesdays and Thursdays. They’ve also been begging to do gymnastics again, and because of school, the only day we could do it was Friday, so we now have something every single weekday, pretty much right in the middle of each day. Yikes.

Since I haven’t posted in so long, a quick catch up for you…

I got back from England on the 6th of July, thoroughly exhausted but filled with memories that will last a lifetime. I know I’ve promised to tell you all about the trip, but I need to wait for life around here to settle, and for me to have the emotional energy to do it properly; to do it justice. Home life has been crazier than usual with the introduction of such close new friends into our lives, and things have been both wonderful and complicated for the past month. With the end of summer comes the realization that things have to go back to normal. Everyone slips back into their schedules, their routines, and we lose the ability to focus so strongly on our friendships, our relationships, which is both good and bad; a relief and painful all at the same time. Such is life. We have to hold onto those beautiful moments in time, and be fueled by the hope for more in our future. Like I said, things are complicated around here, but we’re working on it.

We celebrated Emery’s birthday on the weekend of the 9th of August; a small gathering of family and friends. You can check out the pics here, as well as checking Chloe’s site.

We’ve gone to a few outdoor concerts this summer, and I even made it out to watch a friend perform as Brutus in a Shakespeare in the parks series, which was awesome. We’ve packed picnic dinners and enjoyed the music and the arts together. The latest was last week, when the kiddos and I joined Dan and his friend Kerri and her baby Ela, who are visiting from Mexico, at a performance of well known orchestral pieces given by the Oregon Symphony. It was amazing, and we also got to see a quick performance by Portland Taiko, which if you haven’t ever checked out, you should. Very entertaining. It was a great evening, and wonderful to get to know someone like Kerri, and to get to play with a baby as adorable as Ela.

Choir starts up for me again on Tuesday, which of course I’m looking forward to. I love the singing, the music, the challenge, and the friendships. And I don’t have any solos this season, which is kind of a relief! ;) I need to spend some of this weekend learning the music. I figure as section leader, I have some sort of responsibility to know it well enough to help anyone who is having problems with it! And the fact that I don’t actually know how to read music makes it imperative that I sit down and listen to recordings and midis and learn it all by ear to start with.

Ok, that’s it for now. The fam’s waiting to go to the library, so I’m off! Enjoy the pics.

Where’d Everybody Go?

Heather’s been light on the posts and pictures of late. As a partial substitute, you might subscribe to BBPhoto, a series of photos I take. They’re of middling quality because of the iPhone’s camera, and you’ll have to deal with the daily headshot, but on the weekends at least, there are a fair number of the kids.

That said, she’s currently working on the last couple months of pictures, so hopefully she’ll be posting those today or tomorrow.


Wow, I’ve been a really crappy blogger lately haven’t I?  I had been consumed in May and early June with preparations for my choir trip to England, mostly preoccupations about dying in the fiery ball of a plane crash and leaving my children scarred for life, but ya know, there was the whole making lists and packing thing too.

Glad to say I made it back alive, but definitely changed somehow.  A trip like that is so strange, so compact and whirlwind that it takes you longer to wrap your head around the whole experience once you return, than it did to have the experience in the first place.  I saw some amazing places, had some great food, had no responsibilities except to wake up by a certain time to have breakfast each morning, and had the opportunity to get really close to some amazing people; an opportunity I don’t think I ever would have had if I hadn’t gone on tour, and I will be forever grateful to those who helped me to get there and supported my decision to do so.  A particular thank you to Barney, for allowing me to run off for over a week; to Dodo, for being a saint and watching the kiddos while I was gone, not the easiest job in the world; to my mom, for providing a lot of the financial backing and motivation that allowed me to pursue my desire to be a part of the tour even when I thought it was a pipe dream; and to my sister, Chloe, who I spend nearly every day with, for putting up with loosing her daytime companion for almost two weeks.  Thanks so much to all of you, you’re amazing and I feel blessed to have you in my life.

I will try to sit down and write about some of the places we traveled to and experiences we had once I get all of my pics off the camera and wade through them.  Until then, just know that I’m back, I’m safe, I’m happy but a little scattered and trying to remember how to fit back into my space here.  Please feel free to write or comment, I’d love to know who’s out there in cyberspace and perhaps it’ll help bring me back down to earth a bit.  ;)

For now, if you’re jonesing for some pics, I’m uploading some from the past few months that I never took the time to post about, so look for those over in the Gallery sidebar.

Coming Out From Under My Rock

Hello world! It’s been a while.

I just posted some pics from our lives over the past couple of months. Why don’t you go look at those, and I’m going to head to bed, and we’ll see where we’re at in the morning, shall we? ;) Enjoy!