Monday, August 03, 2015

The Life of Ben. Age 4.5.

We just spent a wonderful weekend camping with friends up on the Mountain Loop Highway. Ben was in heaven.

And thoroughly and completely tuckered out.

Saturday, July 25, 2015


We're making a final push to finish out our camper this weekend. I'm madly sewing away on the curtains and Chris is cutting out Formica for the tables and cabinets. Thankfully the kids are easily amused. 

Things are never boring, that's for darn sure. On an unrelated note, it finally rained!!! Seattle is rejoicing. Ben and I picked blackberries on our way to the park today and we whipped up a berry and cream concoction for dessert. Rain is definitely worth celebrating. 

Happy weekend!

Monday, July 20, 2015

News and Reviews

The Alaska Boys. 

Whelp. This particular collection of articles is a bit tardy. I’ve been collecting them for a while. But they’re all (pretty) good, I promise!

The Greatest Good: finding the charity that will give you the biggest bang for your buck
"Maybe this gift was the agnostic’s prayer, on the off-chance the supernatural accepts gifts in the form of altruism, to simply make the bad things stop."

From a dear friend: Honoring My Journey: A reflection on caregiving

Why women choose not to have children

Outing the Boogeyman (Holy moly. Worth your time)

Do you think this would work: Biotech firm prints 3D fake rhino horn (to stop poaching)

Would you dress the same as your spouse (for 35 years?!)

On my must-read list: Bastards (7 children raised by five families, all reunited). So is this one: Bettyville.

Two articles on appearances:
Human Pelts: the art of preserving tattooed skin
Stop trying to convince me I’m beautiful

A map of Seattle’s Waterfront Street Ends

Seattlites: Did you know that Lyme Disease is in our town? We know someone that contracted it in her backyard in Kirkland. With the kiddies running amok outside, it’s time to do those pre-bed body checks. The mystery of chronic lyme disease. 

Last but not least: John Oliver takes on food waste. And a little info behind those arbitrary ‘sell by’ dates (I’m looking at you, KJ!!):

Hope you’re having a great week.



PS: I just bought this hair color kit and I’m trying to work up the courage to use it. So far, the model has been glaring it me from the box as I’ve thought up a million things to do besides beginning the process. What do you think, Peeps? Anyone have any color-from-a-box tips to pass along? I’m a complete newbie.

Water Babies

We just got back from a week spent visiting family in Alaska.

Ben was in heaven. So was little Em.

And I tell you, Peeps, it was the perfect activity for wearing the kids out before bed. A little hot tub action and Ben was fast asleep in two minutes flat. And then he slept for ten hours.


For the kids, of course.

(And the adults that need a break from the kids. )



Sunday, July 12, 2015

Benisms vol 362

Ben: “Mama?”

Me: “Yes, baby?”

Ben (contentedly): “This is this the life. This is our wonderful life”


(Emma also concurs)

Thursday, July 02, 2015


Holy Frijole, it’s hot out.

What are you guys doing to survive the heat? I’ve turned into a melting lump of lethargy. Send me on an Antarctic expedition peeps, because I am done with Sea-Town.

92 degrees this weekend? Ugh. (Yes, I’m a wimp. But you try living in a 90 year old house with no AC and then we’ll talk).

We’ve been doing our best to keep cool. Mostly our days revolve around popsicles and water.

The beach at Magnuson Park is rocky but it doesn’t get near as crowded as Matthews Beach. We tend to avoid MB like the plague on these hot summer days.

We also went to Greenlake but the water is a bit scuzzy. And there are legions of ducks...and duck poop. How fowl. :) Ben was not the least bit grossed out. The kid is half fish. 

I have a lounger. This girl is my champion snuggler and sleeper. 

And popsicle eater.

It must run in the family. 

I have no idea what’s going on here. Water planking, clearly. 

Our little Lake City Farmer’s Market is up and running on Thursday afternoons. And we learned that Emma can eat her weight in fresh berries.

We built a 25’ slip ’n slide. It was awesome. More on this later. Another note: see how dry our yard looks. And this was in mid-June. Hot weather is no good for Seattle. It typically only appears this parched in late August. It’s been a weird summer. 

Ben is in Wilderness Camp this week at St. Edwards State Park. Emma and I took advantage of the location to go for a little hike. Emma was enthralled.

Back to lounging. Time to beat the heat in the shade.

We went to Woodland Park Zoo a few weeks ago to see the new tiger exhibit. The tigers were hiding so we spent some time with the peacocks. 

He was showing off for the penguins.

We also fed the giraffes. It was a total hoot! Ben could have stayed all day.

Taken with an not great quality.

We rented a kayak on Greenlake and explored “Treasure Island”. It’s $18/hour and we got a double kayak with a baby seat for Emma. Life jackets and paddles included. If you’re going with a child, put your phone in a plastic baggie. Speaking from experience here.

 In other news, we were at a friend’s pool a few weeks ago and my overconfident son decided to dive into the deep end and show off his ‘swimming’ skills. O’s dad nicely jumped in to fish him out and now Ben is enrolled in private swim lessons at the Swim Guru on Aurora.

He looks like a drunk windmilling tasmanian devil, but the BOY IS SWIMMING. Or at least in the process of learning how to swim. We are now total converts to private instruction, despite the astronomically high price. We simply didn’t have good results with group lessons at our local pool so it’s immensely gratifying to see real progress.

No sprinkler, kiddie pool, or water slide? A cold bath or shower does wonders.

Last weekend we went down to Manchester State Park outside of Port Orchard/Bremerton on the Olympic Peninsula. The company was excellent but we weren’t blown away by the park itself. Sub-par camping sites, small public areas, and short walking trails. It was ok but not fabulous, you know? And it didn’t help that all camp fires are currently banned due to the weather conditions. It made for some pretty sorry smores. Deception Pass State Park would be my pick in an instant, despite the numbers of people. 

“I don’t know Ben, it looks pretty cold..."

“No way. It’s never too cold for me!"

This little girl doesn’t want to be left out of the activities.

And we’re back to water games in the yard. The only way to stay somewhat cool these days. 

We’re finally getting to the point where these two can play together. Hooray. Life is good when you have a buddy. Ben needs constant reminders not to be too rough but he’s getting better every day. Love these two.


 Have a great weekend, my dears! Have a lovely time and please be safe. And if you live in the West, consider nixing the fireworks in favor of a public show. Your friendly local firefighters will thank you.