Some Art

Anniversary Moon. Shot hand held and un-cropped with Erin’s Nikon P900. I did color and contrast correct.
Computer generated water color of a nuthatch in our backyard.

Happy 12th Anniversary!

Erin once asked me, “why don’t you write letters to me any more?” To which I laughed and replied, “because you never wrote me back.” She laughed also and said “I guess I needed to do that.” I once wrote Erin a love letter to our kids that we did not have yet apologizing to them that I will love their mother more. 

Parenting can be amazing, full of joy and fulfillment watching your kids find joy and grow. Parenting can also be trying, each putting in 110% and yet seeing the house still messy or finding your spouse still asleep at 10 AM,  or passed out on the couch at 8 PM feeling like the other is not pulling their weight, even though both of you are trying to do their best and not everything is getting done. Parenting can feel filled with guilt that you are doing all you can yet feeling as though you are doing nothing well. And even when you forgive yourself for all those feelings, parenting can feel transactional doing what needs to be done and not finding time for each other. 

There are parents who have date nights or weekends away, but we feel so away from our kids when we are away from them that we don’t really do it. There are too many trips for work that we spend away, and time can feel so short. So we find other ways, we sometimes wake up in the middle of the night and talk for two hours like we did when we were dating. We hold hands in the mall as the kids run on ahead of us. We kiss in front of our kids eliciting knowing glances and “ooohs” between them. We laugh at our own foibles and forgive each other’s angers. We step in when the other is exhausted, we pull our weight to get the kids to the bus. We take care of each other when we are sick or tired, or sad. We take the time to say “I love you” every day and talk every day for the past 14 years. We learn to laugh at ourselves and with each other to grow together, and in growing together, we work to fulfill our vows we made 12 years ago. What can be more romantic than that? Happy anniversary Erin. I love you. 

Halloween 2019

Halloween 2019. Tornado watch now for our area. We are going to the mall. This is Curie and Elia this morning waiting for the bus and for their parade at school.
So Erin was going to be Mommy Shark even before the Nats won, but she conveniently had red and white for her costume. Albert was the out-of-shape Peter C. Parker (not Peter B. Parker because he was not Chinese) complete with sweat pants. We did go to the mall for the first time, and had a really good time. The stores didn’t all participate and they could have taken advantage more by giving out one day coupons or similar (only Roots did something like that). We did get to go trick-or-treating in the neighborhood too.

Hoagland Halloween 2019

Our friends the Hoaglands put together the most amazing party each year for their daughter and son culminating in a truly remarkable haunted house. They have done insane asylums, castles, haunted hotels and more. We have been going since 2007, and sometimes we have simply responded to the theme, like visiting dignitaries to the castle last year, or the doctors at the insane asylum, but our favorites are the meta costumes which started in 2013 when we came as safety inspectors, then the following year as security for the party. We have been mime entertainment, judges of the costumes, and our favorite in the past, when we pretended to be the caterers. This year the Hoaglands created a crazy ghost ship, and true to form we showed up as the souvenier shop, complete with “I survived the Hoagland Ghost Ship” t-shirts, booth, cash box, and gave out eye-patches, light up rings, and shark hats. This year comes close to the caterer year as people really did believe we were selling souveniers for the ghost ship.
Our costume, the Hoagland Souvenier Shop at the Hoagland Ghost Ship, Julie and Steve joined us later. 
OMG, look at the haunted house this year!

Elia Earns Her White Belt

At EMA you start as a no-belt and have to earn your white belt. We are so proud. Curie is so proud.
Elia is approximately 9 months older than Curie for kindergarten and EMA. Here is Curie with Elia for perspective. That is Curie’s old uniform that Elia is wearing.

Saturday in October

We had planned on going apple picking at Stribling but ended up at Burke Nursery instead. We hav good memories of the place where we had gone before with the Skyline Bright Horizons crew. Everyone gets a pumpkin when you leave. Before we went, we had lunch with Julie at Momo and Poke (go with the Kalhua pig) who took the two pictures in front of the plate glass window.
Matchy, matchy as they say. The girls wore grey Supergirl dresses and boots and at Costco, it turns out Erin can wear XL girls coats too so they all got the same coat. If you look carefully in our family picture Albert is also wearing Super-person attire, a black on black Superman shirt.
We have wanted to have a play date with Agnes, Elia’s friend from Bright Horizons. Yesterday we were able to have dinner with her family at Choolah’s. Everyone loved the handwashing machine. Curie has been friends with Natalie and Chloe since Bright Horizons, we wanted to make sure Elia had the same opportunity to stay friends with her friends. Agnes and Elia loved being together, and Agnes’s brother Linus loved Curie.