Mother Nature’s Payback

…we’ve been rained-on. A LOT. I mean, we were bound to have a wet October after a beautifully long summer, but this record rainfall is ridiculous. And, I know that the weather on the East Coast makes our situation pale in comparison and I sound awfully whiny, but I could do with just a teeny tiny bit of sunshine. Too much to ask?

After a full season of sunny soccer games, our last game showed us what we’d been missing out on. Apparently this is how real soccer is played. A certain seven year old was not impressed. Being the mother-of-the-year that I am, I told him he was born in Oregon and this is pretty much how it will be every year from now on so he should try to suck it up and enjoy a chance to play in the mud.

I said this from under my big golf umbrella.

Samuel seemed to enjoy it until he fell in the mud. Unfortunately mother-of-the-year forgot to pack spare clothes.

At least I had something pretty to look at…

… while I wasn’t watching the game intently, of course.

And, to prove that Mother Nature doesn’t discriminate. Here is what it looked like at Samuel’s game a week ago.

I spent the rainy afternoon editing soccer photos to share with the teams and came across this one that reminded me of a sunnier, happier time.

Sorry, I know we had a good Summer and I should be grateful – and I really was dealing with this change in the weather quite well.

But then some big jerk went and stole our golf umbrella after my husband put it down during a visit to the library with the kids and I lost all of that early-Autumn spirit. Seriously? Stealing an Umbrella during a torrential rainstorm in Portland? I know there’s a lightening bolt out there with his or her name on it.

Good thing Halloween is tomorrow. Between Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas, I’m hoping I’ll generate enough “spirit” to carry me through the next few months of rain.

And, while I’m being all optimistic, I want to wish a very Happy Birthday to my Sister-in-Law Emma. Thank you for having your birthday on Halloween so I never forget it. It was very considerate of you. 🙂


Welcome to the Weekend: Friendship

It’s finally Friday. This week has not been particularly difficult, but it felt long. The weekend promises more soccer – a game tonight and another tomorrow – a birthday party and a Mummy and son trip to the Childrens’ theater to see the BFG (which, let’s face it, I am way more excited about than Thomas and Samuel).

I’m kicking off the weekend with an entry in this month’s I Heart Faces challenge on the topic of Friendship.

As these two get older, not only are they looking more alike, but they are becoming the best of friends – with highs and lows of course. One minute I catch them in a very sweet moment – like when Thomas was teaching Samuel how to write a few Japanese Hiragana characters this morning – then the next, they’re bickering about something ridiculous. (“He’s only copying you because he thinks you’re awesome, Thomas”).

It’s no secret that I always wanted to have a little girl but, when I see how strong the bond can be between brothers, it makes me pine for that third baby just a little less.

Photo Challenge Submission

Autumn is Here… And I’m Not Resentful

I have been known to resent the onset of Autumn weather. As the leaves begin to change and the rain starts to fall, it’s hard not to think ahead to at least four months of gray skies and being stuck in the house with two energetic boys when the weather is at its worst.

But this year is different. Portland was blessed with many, many days of sunshine well into October and the strangest thing happened… I actually felt myself looking forward to the rain and chill of Autumn. Of course, the fact that we made it through the majority of the soccer season without the need to wash mud-soaked socks, helped increase my level gratitude and I am secretly dreading the next few weeks. But, even still, I find myself yearning for a lot of things that come with colder weather, including:

  • Not always feeling like we should be doing something to make the most of the great weather (I don’t need the guilt trip)
  • Watching movies with the kids on rainy weekend days – we’re trying to finish the first Harry Potter book so we can watch the movie together before Halloween (a hint about Thomas’ costume…)
  • Warm mulled cider and wine
  • Wintry comfort food
  • Autumn color
  • Green grass
  • The rain that will wash away the thousands of spider webs that currently crisscross our yard (although resenting the fact that those spiders are now finding a dry place inside our house)
  • Clothes that cover up the rolly parts of my body
  • Days off work in November and December

To officially kick off the season on the weekend, we made our way to the Portland Nursery for their apple tasting festival…

—where Samuel practiced his monster walking pose (it was actually a whiny request for a hug).

…Thomas bowed to a few shrines (I think we need one for the backyard – the kid knows how to get his zen on)

…and, of course, ate more pieces of apple than our tummies could handle, washed down with some strudel and ice cream.

Before leaving, we bought about 12 pounds of apples at 99c a pound. I should probably learn how to make a pie or something.

Autumn – bring it!


Life and lack of motivation have both been getting in the way of blogging lately. I realize it’s usually “wordless” Wednesday, but I’ve been experiencing an overwhelming lack of words lately so here are a few random midweek updates.

  • I’ve discovered that both of my boys like to read by themselves at night before turning the lights off. And it’s hard for me to say no when I grew up doing exactly the same thing. (Secretly, I’m happy about it but don’t tell them that).
  • I am reading the first Harry Potter book to Thomas which is fun for both of us and may have started a new obsession (and inspired this year’s Halloween costume)
  • Also, I suspect that Thomas may be part monkey.

  • Samuel has also started a new obsession (for him) – Star Wars. May the force be with us.

  • Samuel’s class performed a Japanese bunny dance/song for the parents last week. Pretty darn cute.

  • Samuel is settling in well at school, although we’re starting to realize that starting school and soccer at the same time might not have been a wise decision. There have been a few meltdowns during drop off with at least two occasions where I’ve had to peel him off me so I could make a quick getaway. Not the most pleasant start to the day.
  • On the up-side, he loves learning Japanese and has been proudly counting from 1-10 (ichi, ni, san…) and singing the same songs over and over and over again until we finally have to ask him to stop.
  • Kei spent last week in Toronto on a work trip so I took over his “Little Kicker” coaching duties. In a word, exhausting. It takes a lot of skill and patience to hold the attention of five 4-5 year olds for a 45 minute game while also trying to get your own reluctant four year old in the game with the other eye tracking your seven year old as he keeps himself entertained. Needless to say, there are no pictures. But here’s one from last week…

  • After months of sunshine, autumn looks to have descended upon Portland. With it comes plans for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Part of me is excited while the the rest of me is a little terrified of the busyness that comes along with lots of plans.

  • And, finally, I was inspired by this article about putting yourself in the photo. I realize that when I put together our 2012 photo book, that there will be very few pictures of me on the pages. I’m starting a new leaf with this photo. (taken with incredibooth for iphone). More to come – although they won’t all be posted here. Baby steps.