Halloween – Better Late Than Never

Things have been a little quiet on the blog lately. Work has been busy and I honestly haven’t been taking many personal photos. I’m waiting for inspiration to bite me but I’m starting to feel as though I might need to kick it into gear with a special project. Or maybe some upcoming travel will do the trick. Now that the weather is turning there’s a danger that I might go into hibernation and the camera will gather dust on the weekends. I’m trying to fight that natural impulse.

At least I have a few Halloween photos and it’s better late than never, right? It was a dark and rainy (not quite stormy) night so I managed about 5 blurry photos before heading home to hand out candy. The boys dressed as a Timbers supporter and a soccer player – so basically the same clothes they wear every day which makes for a cheap and easy halloween. Although I did have to let go of the disappointment when I realized I wouldn’t see a cute little George Washington walking the neighborhood. Our revolutionary war obsession was SO three months ago.

I dressed as a witch for the fifth year in a row but Samuel made me promise to dress up as something different next year. Maybe I’ll make him a deal and dress as Martha Washington if he agrees to go as George. I have a few months to think about it.

Here are the few photos I captured of our crew wandering the neighborhood and the one annual obligatory “stand for a photo at the door before I give you candy” photograph. The thing I love about this annual photo is that it’s so easy to see the passage of time behind the costumes. These children who used to be babies are now independent little people – little people with their own, very strong ideas about what they want to dress as for Halloween.

And a comparison, just for fun.

Off to shed a tear or two…

Wordless Wednesday: Hot Chocolate Season Has Begun

… and soccer season continues. I don’t think I’ve taken a photo of them in anything other than a soccer jersey over the past 6 months.

Local Portland Tip: The hot chocolate from Coffeehouse Northwest on Burnside is so good that I felt guilty giving it to my children – like I was sharing some sort of elicit drug. There were exclamations of “This is SO good, mum!” and “this is REAL chocolate” while their little eyes sparkled in delight. I think we’ll be back.

Wordless Wednesday: Wonderball

Last weekend I was afforded the opportunity to volunteer as a photographer at the Children’s Cancer Association’s Annual Hero Gala. The theme for this year was Wonderball which lent itself to a fantastical carnival atmosphere filled with stilt walkers, acrobats, carnival games, face painting, a steampunk band, a marching band and so much more. It was a fabulous event that raised a lot of money for an organization that helps give joy to so many people who are going through the darkest times of their lives. I feel honored to be able to have contributed to this cause in my own small way.

Summer Postcard: The Summer of Soccer

To say the boys became more interested in Soccer over the Summer would be an understatement. I’d say obsessed is a more accurate description. They spent every waking non-camp moment outside kicking the soccer ball to each other, stopping only to argue over a play (“That WASN”T a goal!” “Foul”). On the rare occasion that they came inside, you could find them arranging their World Cup soccer cards in the middle of the living room floor. I’m amazed at how those cards seemed to multiply over the Summer.

The cause of this latest obsession can likely be traced back to the World Cup. While they’ve always enjoyed playing the game, having the opportunity to see it played on a world stage was inspiring and opened their eyes to a whole new group of soccer heroes – Messi! Neymar! Ronaldo! Suarez!

It didn’t hurt that Soccer also took over the city of Portland for All Star week in August providing us with the opportunity to catch some of these world class players in action – in a Bayern-Munich practice session, anyway. I earned my Soccer Mum stripes by using a week off work to take them to some of the World Cup activities downtown. Tickets to the game were sold out months in advance but I think we successfully immersed ourselves in the vibe.

We also managed to catch a Portland Thorns Women’s soccer game at Providence park – our first pro soccer experience. Despite the stifling heat, both Thomas and Samuel watched every minute and we discovered a new family activity that we hope to re-live over and over again with future Thorns and Timbers games.

Here are just a few of the photographic highlights from our Summer of Soccer. I have a feeling that this is an obsession that, unlike Pokemon, will remain with us for many years.