Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Wordless Wednesday - The Little Red Truck

This is MCT week, one of my favorite weeks of the year (read this if you don't already know why) and both of my girls are in the MCT production of The Secret Garden this year.  For Wordless Wednesday this week I wanted to [not entirely wordlessly] compare my annual little red truck photos over the past three years.  Performances are on Saturday and Lily is a Firefly while Addie is part of the Secret Garden.  
2012 -  a Firefly and the Secret Garden in The Secret Garden 

2012 -  a Firefly and the Secret Garden in The Secret Garden
2011 - a Bat in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

2011 - a Bat in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

2010 - a Lobster in Alice in Wonderland
And this year we got extra lucky because the little red truck even stayed at our house!  So much fun!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Wordless Wednesday - Look alikes

You all know how much I love to compare kiddos!  Yes, with each other, but with also with other kids I love.

So imagine how pleased I was when we were at the playground on Sunday and my mother in law showed me a picture of my nephew in a red shirt, playing on a playground in NJ.  Bryson was, at that moment, playing on the playground, in a red shirt.  You know I jumped on it.  The two Herman boy cousins?  Um, yeah!

 They are separated by 4 years and 3000 miles, but you'd never know it looking at this picture.  If you are on my FB, you've already seen it.  But I love it!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

nine eleven ... 11 years ago

Last year, my mom's boss called me at the end of August to interview me about the upcoming Ten Year Anniversary of September 11th. We scheduled a time, and I ask my mom to send me the article in which she'd extensively quoted me 10 years before. Like many of us, 9/11 often times seems like a verb, an adjective to me; the fiery buildings on the TV, the speculation, the interviews, the fear, the devastation. Over time in the last 11 years, it can accidentally and unfortunately become all too commonplace. But in the last 2 weeks, the specials, the speaking of the families, the memorials. It's real again. I remember again. Every year, I remember again.  And reading those words that a 24 year old frightened girl spoke to her mom after the long and terrible day was eerie. It brought tears to my eyes and took me to a place that I hadn't visited a in a long while.

Stuck in traffic on the New Jersey turnpike, watching the first seemingly tiny plane hit with my own eyes, I might have rolled them thinking, what kind of idiot would hit a huge building?  I was late for work, and everyone was just staring at this small stream of smoke rising form the building.  But then not long after, watching that second plane, (a news plane maybe? my mind wondered, coming to assess the damage of the first?) circle around and hit the other building, again with  my own eyes, my body still covers with goosebumps when I think of the simplistic, almost childish thought went through my head, "that, was on purpose". Instantly I felt so very afraid and alone, as the turnpike turned to a parking lot and people started getting out of their cars in disbelief, looking across the river and sharing the horror with strangers. When I got to work, 45 minutes later, I felt so afraid for my co-workers who had husbands and wives, brothers and sisters, and kids in the city. The internet and the phones were down, rumors were circling that no one could get in or out of the City or the other Burroughs, where many lived.  We stood together shoulder to shoulder and looked out of the window from our 5th floor office window watching in silence, but we needed to see, so we moved out to the parking structure and watched in disbelief as the towers came down. We stood there, hugging and crying, and not knowing the the hell this meant, just that it was something awful, we couldn't comprehend.  I left work alone and stopped at the store after about an hour of commuting, where the bottled water was already sold out. I was numb in the aisle wondering where I would get clean water, imagining the worst.  Police escorts took us off of the turnpike and onto some back roads that I was unfamiliar with. Someone in another store store said planes were hitting all over the east coast, and one had just hit the white house. I took the last three cases of water at that store.  I tried to call my mom and Lawrence but all circuits were busy.

Never in my life did I wish more that everyone I loved was in Joseph, Oregon than at that moment. I didn't know what was going on, but I knew I didn't want to be where I was. I didn't want to be close enough to see things happen with my own eyes.
The morning of September 11th, 2011 - 10 years later - at 9am I was going for a run. It was the first day of my new phase with my fitness accountability group. I ran 2.5 miles and went to the grocery store, shopped, and called Lawrence and the kids to pick me up. I thought and reflected the whole time. I thought about what else I could have said, should of said to answer the interview questions.    How could I have described, how did that day change me, in ways that were the same and in ways that were different than anyone else in this world?  In so many ways it changed everyone...who was I to be answering a question about how it changed me?

I thanked, and continue to thank, God for another day to love the ones I love.  

At the one year anniversary, I was living in Portland, a newlywed.  It was then that I found out this affected everyone in the country so profusely.  Being in NYC many times in the months following the 9/11 attacks...I naively thought it was something that happened to the city, it happened more to the people downtown that it did to those in midtown, it happened more the people in midtown than it did to those in New Jersey, and I foolishly thought, it happened more to those in New Jersey than it did to people in Oregon.  Because my own experience felt so big at that time, I missed the bigger picture.  But when I got home.  When I was here.  That's when I found out that it happened to everybody.  And on days like today, we remember the victims, those who gave and give their lives for bravery and to save others, those who died in this and all senseless attacks, those who lost people that mattered more to them that life itself.  

We also remember that the attack happened to each of us as well.  In some personal and profound way, we all were changed, we all remember, we all have a story.  And a loss.  We are brought back to the moment that we realized that this was bad, that we might not be safe.  The uncertainty.  The goosebumps.  We can all remember what that moment was for us.  Who was sitting next to us.  Our exact line of thinking.  

I couldn't write this a year ago, like I wanted to.  I had all the words in my head, but I couldn't do them justice on the page.  I was shaken from that interview, numb and haunted by the emotions it stirred.  But today, I came back here because I wanted to tell my story, and because I want to hear yours.

Monday, September 10, 2012

The first day...again

Addie - First Day of Kindergarten - 2012

Lily - First day of Second grade - 2012

I took the first day of school off.  I decided last year to do that every year.  Every person in our family's birthday off and the first and last day of school.  It was a good idea.  

After Kindergarten I brought Addie home so we could bake.  We made some yummy Paleo chocolate chip cookies.  It was my first attempt at baking grain, sugar, and dairy free, and it turned out awesome.  The kids loved them too.  Addie and I had lunch together, played a game, baked and hung out together before it was time for to get Lily.  We did out first day of school interview.  

What's your name? Addie
How old are you? Five
What was special about today? about Kindergarten? No.  I was wondering what you were talking about.  Even stuff that aren't in my kindergarten?  I don't know what you are asking me.  Stop typing.  KINDERGARTEN!!!!!
How did you get to school?  By the car
How did you get home?
 By the car 
What is your teachers name? Um, I always get them mixed up about two things.  I forgot.
What's your favorite color? Blue
What's your favorite book? Cars
What's your favorite song? Everyone was kung fo fighting
What's your favorite movie? Cars
Television Show? Is it, can it be? Word World
Who's your best friend? I don't really know.  Can you pick one?  Can you list a few?  Um.  Carter, Rachel, that's it
Favorite Smell? flowers
What's your favorite kind of candy? chocolate chip cookies that we just made
Favorite Sound? I don't wheely know. 
Is there any sound you can think of that you really like to hear? The sound of an airplane like I hear right now - or something (it is a motorcycle)
What's your favorite instrument? ukulele
Favorite thing to do at school? Do cwafts. 
What do you hope to learn this year at school? 
To learn about bears Anything else? uh-uh.
Don't you know about bears already? 
But I wanna learn more
What's your favorite game? The bear game you got me
Favorite Food? Chicken nuggets
Favorite thing to drink? pink lemonade
What's your favorite animal? Bear
What's your favorite thing to do? cuddle with bear-bear and mommy
? um, the parade in Joseph
Front Yard? 
play in the sprinkler
Back Yard? Look for butterflies with our net
What about on the swing set?  I wike to do Ninja Warrior and get acwoss without touching the bottom. the. ground.
Where's your favorite place to go? Sauvie Island
What's your favorite Toy? Bear Bear
What's your favorite thing about Lily? Um, I like to play with her
What's your favorite about Bryson?  I like to rub his face and his body because it's so soft. (LOL)
Okay, What color are Lily's eyes? Bwown
Brysons?  Blue Yours? Blue 
Anything else about Lily that you want to share? nothing else, I wanna be done
Anything else about Bryson that you want to share? I wike to cuddo with him when he doesn't kiss me in the eye
How old is Daddy? I don't know Guess.  33 Did I guess white?
How old is Mommy? I don't know. Guess. 15 (smile)
What makes you happy? To cuddle with bear bear
What do you want to be when you grow up? A wace car dwiver
What is your favorite word that Bryson says: I like him say wheel things that we don't even know what he says
What is your favorite word?um, cars
What is your favorite time of day? I like it when it's not too sunny but it is sunny
What is your favorite way to have your hair? I like it just one clippy he-o and one clippy he-o (here)
What is your favorite Holiday? 4th of July
Why? Because it's my bday and I like my bday
What other holiday do you like? I like Christmas holiday
Whose your favorite character? Lightning McQueen
What is your favorite day of the week? 

What's your favorite room in the house? my woom
What's your favorite thing about daddy?That he's my buds
What's your favorite thing about mommy? That you cuddle with me at night night
What was your favorite trip this summer? Jenny's beach house because Bryson was in the room (with her and Lily) and I like 2 people with me, and I like myself with me.  Haha.  (she said haha)
What do you like about Uncle Matt? Um.  Um. That he's nice
What about Grandma Lanie? Um. I don't weally....Um. That she's nice.
What about Grandma Carol and Grandpa Steve? They're cause they're nice
Who do you sleep with?Lily, cause we share a room.  Anyone else? only at Jenny's beach house, Bwyson slept with us.  Bear-bear
Anything else you want to share : Um, no.  What is it sharing with?  Is is sharing with my teacher.  No just with my blog.  Block.  Oh, so it's for a blog.  

I picked up Lily and thought about how at only 2pm, it was my 3rd and not last time at their school that day.  I rolled my eyes and then secretly felt like a really cool soccer mom since my next time would be for soccer practice.  We went to our favorite little local coffee shop, and I brought one of Lily's American Girl Kaya chapter books for us to read.  We finished the 4th book in the series then did her interview, all while Lily sucked down a vanilla smoothie.  

What's your name? Lily
How old are you? Seven n a half - do you just write what I say?
What was special about today? Uh the first day of school
How did you get to school? You took me 
How did you get home? You drove me to Metro Perc in the car
What is your teachers name? Mrs. LB 
What's your favorite color? Turquoise
What's your favorite book? The Bible, The Kaya (American Girl) books, Junie B books, and Junie B puzzle book
What's your favorite song? The sun will come out tomorrow
What's your favorite movie? Annie
Television Show? Mickey Mouse
Who's your best friend? Rachel
Who are some good friends at school? Emma, Lucy, Brady, Gavin 
Favorite Smell? The smell of mondel bread getting cooked
What's your favorite kind of candy? Um, tootsie rolls
Favorite Sound? Um, listening to songs
What's your favorite instrument? accordion
Favorite thing to do at school? Math
What do you hope to learn this year at school?
Harder Math Anything else? How to type
What's your favorite game? Monopoly
Favorite Food? Ice cream and pancakes
Favorite thing to drink? chocolate milk
What's your favorite animal? Penguin
What's your favorite thing to do? Spend time with you
? I think it's going to new parks that I never been there before
Front Yard?
Play in the sprinkler
Back Yard? Play on the swing set
What on the swing set?  Do Ninja Warrior and do my flip on the ropes
Where's your favorite place to go? Bullwinkles and to see Grandma and Grandpa
What's your favorite Toy? My stuffed animals in my bed
What's your favorite thing about Addie? When she laughs and when she is in a happy attitude and she wants to be a big girl with me. 
What's your favorite about Bryson? When he plays with me and hugs and kisses me
Okay, What color are her eyes? Blue
Brysons?   Blue Yours? Brown Anything else about Addie that you want to share? no that's it for Addie
Anything else about Bryson that you want to share? I like putting him to bed and when he cries when I leave because he loves me, I mean, I don't like that he cries but I like that he loves me a lot.
How old is Daddy? 39
How old is Mommy? 35
What makes you happy? You and Daddy and my family
What do you want to be when you grow up? An acrobat and a teacher.  I kind of want to be be an acrobat and a teacher and a guy who cuts hair
What is your favorite word that Bryson says: he-a, he-a (here)
What is your favorite word? that I say? I don't know I like a lot of words.  So list one.  I don't know.
What is your favorite time of day? Right when I wake up so it is a long time to go to bed
What is your favorite way to have your hair? a pony in the back
What is your favorite Holiday? I think it's Christmas
Why? Because it's Jesus's birthday
What other holiday do you like? Is my birthday a holiday? no.   
Halloween and Easter and Yeah
What is your favorite day of the week?
I think it's Friday, so we have the weekend and it's movie night

What's your favorite room in the house? The playroom
What's your favorite thing about daddy? When he gets me ice cream at Joseph and when he's nice to me
What's your favorite thing about mama? When she hugs and kisses me and puts me nigh night and gives me love
What was your favorite trip this summer?   The trip to Joseph, both of them, and the trip to the beaches
What do you like about Uncle Matt? I like it when he does fun things and gives me piggy back rides and let's me climb on him
What about Grandma Lanie?  When we go there, and when she reads to me, and does crafts with me and when she does fun stuff like that with me.
What about Grandma Carol and Grandpa Steve? When Gma Carol gives me chocolate milk, when she gives me ice cream for snack, and when we make Mondel Bread together.  And for Gpa Steve?When he reads me books
Who do you sleep with? I sleep with Addie and my guys.  What guys? Mickey, Penguin, Socky, Monk-Monk, Elephant, Kaya, Polar Bear, Piggie and Ducky, and turtle that Rachel likes, let me think if there is anything else.  Did we put Monkey?  Green monkey is monKEY and brown monkey is monk MONK.  And that's who I sleep with.  Wow full house.  Yeah, I pretend in my bed is my house, I pretend the foot of my house is outside in the backyard.  YUP  (nod nod nod)
Anything else  you want to share: I pretend that the blankies folded at the foot of my bed are benches outside, and their my outside furniture, and some of my stuffed animals like sockie usually sleep out there.  

Twas a wonderful full day of school.  I didn't feel as sad as the last two years.  But I did get a little teary eyed during Mrs. O's "see ya later alligator" song when she said "give a hug to your partner, Kindergartner"...that got me.  I love her, and my Addie is in Kindergarten.  Then I got choked up while reading about Kaya thinking of her sister who had been kidnapped 3 books ago and the stray dog that was leaving Kaya.  My sentimental came out in strange places on my first day of school this year, that's for sure.  I'm a blessed mama, a happy mama, a tired mama.  Good night.  

Monday, September 3, 2012

The best part of summer was...


Tonight at dinner Lawr reminded the kids that this week at school they were probably going to have some type of assignment regarding what they did this summer.  He asked Lily what her favorite part was.  Before she could answer he told her she was not allowed to say 'Everything'.  She laughed since that is just what she was about to say.

We went through the extensive list of favorite things.  And wow, there are a lot.

Joseph, Joseph, Joseph
Learning to swim and going to Uncle Matt's pool
Going to Bullwinkles
Going to the beach with Grandma Lanie and seeing Caleb and Colton
Bowling at Big Al's

Her 5th Birthday

Going to Bullwinkles
The fireworks at Wallowa Lake
Ape Caves and turning off her flashlight in the dark with Daddy
Getting her yellow belt at Karate

'pending time with my cousins at the beach 

Going to Buillwinkles
Going in the mud (aka clamming)

Our new deck
Our anniversary party

Jeanine and Otto coming
Going to Joseph twice
Beer Festival afternoon date with Lawrence

Joseph the 2nd time, seeing Meg and OZ and Taylor and learn a new game
Reading Kaya books on our Deck
Our anniversary party, and being with Jeanine and Otto
Shelby's Birthday

 Addie got her yellow belt!
Lunch time walks with a friend who recently moved back to Portland meant logging 3 miles some days...beautiful

Bullwinkles - Bumper Boats

Bullwinkles, me and the kids

Bryson loves mini golf

Lily was a rock climbing machine

Gulp, I did this obstacle course but took the photo when I came down and Lily wanted to "go around again"  I was terrified.


The Girls cooling off after trampolines

Free Big Al's bowling with Uncle Matt - Kids went about once a week all summer

Ice cream social

Sauvie Island

Boat race at church

Soccer camp
Wallowa Lake

Honorable Mentions: 
Memorial Day in Manzanita with my mom

Outlaw Memorial for Jim

My cousin Halley's wedding outside of Lincoln City
Joseph for 4th of July

Camping with the Ornelas Family
Father's Day at Fryer Tucks
2 VBS Camps

Soccer Camp for Lily
Joseph again for Blews and Brews
Bullwinkles (if you didn't hear about that above)
Jumping at Skyhigh Sports on Trampolines (like I did it too!)
and yesterday...Coffee and sunshine and playing in the sand at Sauvie Island
Lots of BBQs with friends
Sleeping outside with Daddy
Berry Picking
Lemonade Stand
2 half marathon's for Lawrence

I have a lot of pictures and should (as in I want to) write a post about every one of these events.  Maybe I will at some point.  Ha.  Ha.  Hahhahahahahahahahahahahaha.  Who am I kidding, I can't even make the time tonight to get some of these photos in some sort of reasonable order or caption them, or even fix the alignment issues that happened when I tried to get them into some sort of reasonable order.

Well, a girl can dream.

Instead brace yourself for more photo dump:
Full moon - fireworks at Jocelyn's parents house over Wallowa Lake

Mt St Helens

After coming out of the Ape Caves

Ape Caves with my passenger

Lawrence and Lily learned to Paddle Board, that is them to the left

Kaya (Lily's American Girl Doll) goes home, and meets Chief Joseph

Early morning Shananagans - yes please

As I did the dishes from tonight's dinner, and listened to my kids shower and bathe upstairs, the girls getting ready for their first day of school.  I thought about the conversation at dinner, and I had to stop and breath as I was amazingly overwhelmed at how full my life feels.

Addie will be in Kindergarten tomorrow and Lily will be in the Second grade.  Bryson is becoming a little boy with feelings and thoughts and ideas.  My kids are growing up.  And I'll need to blog about that next, so I've dumped as much as I can here to start fresh with first day of school pics tomorrow!

Thank you God for this full life.  Please place your hand of protection over them, and give me so much wisdom and patience.  More than I had today...or yesterday.  May life be so full and busy that I have no time to document it! Thank you, thank you, thank you for all the blessings that are given, not because I am deserving, but because you love me.  Amen.