Thursday, October 30, 2014

Pumpkin Patching

I can't believe it is fall.
There is not a crisp in the air.
There is not the promise of rain... anytime soon.
My jackets and scarves are still packed away.
And my body is still sweating.... a lot!
It has taken me a while to get into the swing of Autumn.  The harvest and Halloween decorations just can out a week ago.  I just don't feel ready.  But... ready or not.... it is pumpkin season.... and a pumpkin hunting we must go!

In Oregon one goes to a farm that has pumpkins growing. most likely there is a tractor pull hay ride... Sometimes there is a corn maze... your lucky if there is a petting zoo or horse ride.  Here in California, the findings of a pumpkin are usually in  a bounce house filled parking lot with bright lights, hay bales, and lots of, well, pre-picked pumpkins.  Since moving here I was not ready to experience this type of Pumpkin Patch.... I just couldn't.  I searched and searched for a pumpkin patch in the area.  I found one about 40 minutes away, down a winding road, and in the hills.
The place is called Bates Nut Farm.
OH GOODNESS!  I wasn't the only one who thought going here was a good idea.  The place was packed~ I should have known a Saturday before Halloween would be a high draw of people.   Even among the people.... we had a blast.  There were animals everywhere.... and the kids loved the Hay Maze.  The boys picked out a pumpkin and we walked around the grounds a little.  It was one of our first outings together as a family that combined a tradition we had in Oregon, and were able to be continued here in California.
Happy Fall!


tis the season of thread, felt and creativity as Halloween fast approaches.

the little wanted to be a pumpkin this year.... imagine how thrilled I was that even as a 9 year old he still wants to be something fun, cute and easy to make (of course we all remember the year when he wanted to be Mt. Vesuvius).  I had the costume all cut and ready to sew when I asked him to draw the face he wanted for it.  problem #1... BIG MISTAKE.
he drew this super elaborate face and was set on it being so.
the eyes were easy.
the nose was easier.
the eyebrows... well, he needed eyebrows.
but that  mouth.

I went through felt section after felt section trying to perfect the "super scary" mouth.  It was never up to the standards of the costume wearer.... so, in the spirit of giving....
I gave him a chalk pen, some scissors, and a square of felt.

his first drawing, first image, and first cut.  He was done.  But, most importantly, he was happy.

In closing I have to add a conversation we had today walking to school.
mom: " B, you get to wear your costume to school on Friday.  Would you like that?"
B: "oh no mom.  I can't do that."
mom: " yes you can.... its OK with the school."
B; " oh no mom.  It is a way to scary costume for school.  All of the little kids will not want to see something scary."

oh, how cute is he.  He thinks his costume is a scary costume.  I don't have a heart to tell him how adorable he looks.  Pictures will be posted over the weekend.... we don't want you to be too scared!

Saturday, October 11, 2014


I lost a dear, longstanding, and wonderful best friend this week.
I began to really wonder if the tears would ever stop falling....
I would be in a deep sleep and wake with tears...
I would be in the middle of something and they would fall again.
Grief is a strange thing.

my friend was one of those true friends... 
you know that type of person who no matter how far apart you were... 
nothing changed.
our lives were weaved together (actually, knit together... because she taught me to knit)
our lives were knit together over 15 years ago.
She was beside me in so many life changes.
oh how I loved her.
I loved her ability to always think ahead.
I loved how she always knew the right answer ( we won may board games that way!)
I loved how she laughed at all the stupid things.
I loved how she always knew what was needed.
She was a treasured friend who always thought of others, no matter what.
She knew how to throw a party.
She knew how to reach anyone.
oh, man... she knew how to cook!  
She gave the best hugs!!!

You will always be near me,
and I will always remember you.
You were gone to soon,
and your story was beautifully made.
May I always share your spark, your heart, your being, to those around me.
I was honored to witness your marriage.  I was blessed to see your babies.  
I will always be grateful to have called you  my best friend.
11.13.80  - 10.6.14

Thursday, September 25, 2014

One of the ways we said goodbye

When school ended, in June, we had about 6 weeks before we moved.  I got an idea that would help make the transition from Oregon to California memorable.  Not to mention, this idea kept the boys busy over the summertime.  We sat down together and talked about what were some things we would want to do to remember Oregon.... We called it our GOODBYE PORTLAND BUCKET LIST.

This is what we came up with

We were able to do all but three of the listed activities and the memories that we had were worth every moment.  This list was able to give me something to look forward to while I was being swallowed up by boxes and packing tape... It had me stop the madness of go,go,go and allowed me to just be,be, be.  My boys loved it, every moment of it.  Here are some photos of our times well spent.

Seaside, OR


SlappyCakes with Abbie and Emily

Wunderland Nickle Arcade
Bliss Cupcakes
Sleepover in Ruby
Captain Craig's ( Lake Washington)
Berry picking with Peri and Rya
Forestry Center
Wings and Waves
 This list helped my boys say goodbye to all their favorite places ( and with some favorite friends), and allowed them to experience some new places before we moved.... It was bittersweet ( I may have cried a couple of times) but a beautiful experience. A perfect way to end a chapter of our lives.