Saturday, March 28, 2009

2009 Garden

Our friend, Chris, has spearheaded a great opportunity for us and 5 other families(7 total) up here in little ol' Vancouver. He was talking to Richard, one of the owners of the stores that Chris and I work for, about wanting enough land for a group of families to get together and farm. Richard listened then offered us some of his land to do just that. This is an amazing opportunity. One half of a football field is what we will be gardening on this year and that will be plenty for our families plus some extra to give away or sell. I can't find my list of what we are planting but off the top of my head: corn, peas, beans, carrots, broccoli, lettuce, spinach, kale, cucumbers, all types of tomatoes, misc. squash, onions, bok choy, garlic, some herbs, beets, watermelon, pie pumpkins, zucchini, misc. peppers, etc. We are also discussing raspberries and blueberries but know we won't be harvesting those until the 2010 growing season. The garden is about 13 miles NW of here which may seem a bit far to some but each family will have a day to go and take care of the garden. I'm sure we will be visiting more, especially during harvest season. I also hope and plan to use the large garden as a great learning experience for the boys! And of course, I started a blog to document it all, you can visit it at

Chris and his kids standing at the plot.

Partial view of the garden to be.

A little different angle.

Joel and Chris went up to Woodland today to get a load of free alpaca poo! It was raining so hard today that the poo was just saturated. They will head up when the weather cooperates again for a couple more loads.

More of Grandma's Pictures

I figure if Grandma Ricki is taking pictures then I can just steal some of hers while she is here...

Noah won't be able to fit on Daddy's lap for much longer.

Noah playing Tony Hawk on his PSP.

Oliver got some glow-in-the-dark bracelet things and he turned them into these beauties!

Oliver smelling the Playdoh flower I made for him.

Oliver wanted me to smell the flower too.

Thursday, March 26, 2009


It's not common to catch me in front of the camera, but I'm taking it easy these days. Some might say that I'm not sitting around enough but my lower back and behind beg to differ! Plus the fact that Grandma Ricki, who is here from AZ to help me around the house, has gotten a few pictures of me says a lot!!
Noah and I rockin' the Guitar Hero!
Do you like my jeans? I was just dressing the part.

Joel, Noah and I relaxing on the couch.

Okay, I'm sitting in this picture but making orzo salad with my boy is not tough work at all. He is helping me rough chop the dried cherries - yum!
Want the recipe?

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Look At What I Got

Beth, the mastermind behind Heartstring Primitives, sent me this kit of stitching projects to help keep my hands and head busy while I recover. She sent me everything that I will need and I mean everything, linen to stitch on, fabric to back the pin cushion, crushed walnut shells for filling the cushion, full skeins of thread, the sampler book, a disc with tutorial, a hoop and a needle! I even got a cute little flower! I am excited to get started but wonder if my eye-hand coordination is good enough to produce something beautiful. Beth's stitching work is gorgeous, I fear that my stitch work may be good for some comic relief. I'll let you know how it goes. To purchase or view more of Beth's creations visit her ETSY shop or her family blog. I also linked the pictures below to her online images, be sure to check those out too.

My stitching kit!

The pin cushion I will attempt...
I love all the little details that are in this pin cushion. They may be overlooked if you were to just glance at it but she stitched the "M" in the heart for her sweetheart, the two wings on the smaller heart are for her children and the crown represents her faith.

I will also attempt this 1827 Fraktur Bird.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Karate School Demonstration

This Saturday, the 21st at 7pm is another Kanthak Karate all school demonstration at Shahala Middle School. If you are around we'd love to have you join us! With each belt advancement Noah gets, he has to work harder and work longer to advance to the next level. However, to let the kids know that they are on track and doing well Mr. K, with each school demonstration, holds a belt ceremony. Last ceremony Noah earned his junior green belt, this time he earned a black stripe to put onto his belt. He is well on his way to his solid green belt. Just in case you can't make it to the demo, here are a few pictures of them practicing and then of Noah getting his black stripe.

Brush, Punch!

Overlapping arm, choke hold escape Noah just got done with the forehand punch portion of this move.

Noah doing the step swing-kick. It's a bit blurry but you can see just how high he can kick. His foot is as high as his partner's head.

Mr. K putting the black stripe onto Noah's belt.

Mr. K expects and demands respect from every single student, even when congratulating them on a job well done.

Group photo and somehow Noah ended up in the front and not blocked by another student!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


I can NOT wait for spring to really, truly be here, I am being very impatient this year. I got some pretty flowers from Dad and Lavelle, my boys and Boyd Coffee Company to help speed up my recovery and took out my camera to play a bit. This just ramped up my level of restlessness. And don't forget about the tulip farms - I've learned a lot about my camera this past year and can't wait to hit those beautiful fields soon! Try out different settings, new angles, etc. I am going to have to hit the fields once by myself this year. I may also have to make a trip up to my sisters and drag her out to the Skagit valley tulip festival, just her, me and our cameras!

Preparing Myself Now

This child of mine is full of life. When he is passionate about something he throws his entire heart into it. It doesn't matter what it is, his current love of trucks is seemingly unending; when wrestling with Noah there is no little bit of wrestling, it's all or nothing; painting is an experience to be had not just some project to keep him busy; even his temper tantrums are from the heart; the list goes on and on. My soul aches knowing that someday this boy is going to grow up, find that one girl who makes his soul sing and he will, with all of his heart, be hers. Oh sure, he will still love me and be a part of my life but my job will be done and I will be proud. I'm just preparing myself now...

Monday, March 16, 2009


I heard Oliver yell, "SPIDER!" then there was some commotion followed by some frantic, overly exaggerated breathing. I came around the corner and found Oliver on the kitchen counter. No chairs, stools or other means of getting up there were near by - just a boy on the counter...

Recovery With Oliver's Help?

I was worried about how my recovery would go with a rambunctious 3 year old about the house and so far it's been okay. I've kept loads of pillows around me and have blocked any threatening advances quite well. He is having a difficult time though with the fact that he can't see my owie. He keeps wanting to see my belly and when he doesn't see an actual owie he says quite exuberantly, "You're all better now!" I've explained that it's inside that needs time to heal and get better many times. Yesterday he grabbed an ice pack from the freezer, put it on my belly for about 10 seconds, pulled it off and exclaimed, "TA-DA! I fixed your owie!" He is sweet for trying and wouldn't it be nice if worked like that!

On one of short walk abouts, Oliver slid into my favorite spot on the couch, complete with ice pack for his "owie" and told me, "I need to get better now." So I made him a couple of waffles and let him "heal" for a while longer.

They gave me this little gadget to make sure that I exercised my lungs. As you breathe in, you try to keep the little piece on the side between the two arrows and the big piece in the center rising at a steady pace. Helps prevent the short shallow breaths that tend to happen after surgery and therefore helps prevent pneumonia. ANYWAY, I thought I would share this with you because I grabbed it to do a set of big deep breaths and found...

That Oliver had stuffed the mouthpiece full of peanuts!

And just in case that didn't quite block it, he also shoved a few farther down in the tube.

Needless to say, I didn't do my breathing exercises but I got a good workout trying not to laugh and desperately holding my belly so it wouldn't hurt.
Yeah, I'm not getting any air through that mouthpiece!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

A Great Friend with a Great Idea

Steph called, well technically IM'd me today and asked if I wanted to join her for a walk on Sauvie Island. At first I was going to say no because I'm trying to get the house clean and laundry all caught up, etc. before my surgery Thursday, but finally realized that I really needed to get out of the house. Thank God for good friends getting me out of the house. I will be cooped up enough as it is for the next couple of weeks so getting outside was perfect! It was chilly but it wasn't raining, snowing, hailing or even windy for that matter so all things considered, it was a beautiful day! We met at Wapato Access Greenway State Park and headed out.

Came around the bend and up onto a platform into this beautiful area. I can't wait to go back in the spring or summer just to see the change in the landscape.
Sunny, Woodrow and Sammy joined us for our walk.

We loved how the dogs just kind of disappeared into the brown/tan grasses.

Oliver decided to burn off some energy and run a few laps on the deck/platform.

The ferns were blooming (is that the right term for ferns) all over the trees. Some of the trees had huge limbs stretching out from them with tons of ferns. Looked like a preview of the spring that is almost here. I bet it will be hard to see the ferns once all the leaves come back.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

The Three Amigos

My sister is in town to pick up their pony, Hal, and bring him back up to their place. She dropped Trevor off at Gammy's on her way through so I took Noah and Oliver out to her place to play with their cousin. They were loud, rambunctious, cantankerous, etc. but they had a lot of fun! This was from the end of the day/evening, they were having a quick snack of peanuts before we headed home to bed.

Woof Woof

Oliver crawled up to me the other day and said, "I'm a dog, woof-woof. I need dog food, woof-woof. Grrrrrr." I laughed and gave my new little doggy a pat on the head. People keep asking us when we are going to get another dog, we will someday but we just aren't ready for that yet. For now this little pup will have to do...

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Haiku by Noah

Noah has been working on poetry in his class, his assignment this week was to write a haiku. In case it's been a while since you've had to haiku, it goes... title, 5 syllable line, 7 syllable line, 5 syllable line.He had to pick a topic from nature.

Scary, loud drumming
Rumbling, storms, run inside
Hail, lightning, BOOM!

Monday, March 02, 2009


I usually spend my Monday cleaning up the house and getting re-organized after the weekend events. However, knowing that March is usually very rainy around here, I decided to enjoy the sun instead.

Oliver definitely appreciates the sun. Look close, you can see me in his glasses.