Wordless Wednesday: Seattle at Night

A quick walk down 1st avenue from Pike to Madison.

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Today’s Photos of a Seattle Sunset and a Rubber Duck

I’m on a short business trip to Seattle and feeling just a little guilty about leaving Kei back in Portland with a pile of childcare and illness issues back at home.

And, although I have a lot of work to do while I’m up here, the Mummy guilt increases a little bit more when I look out of my hotel window.

But, then I take a bubble bath and remind myself that I’ll be back in a couple of days…

…and suddenly I feel a whole lot better.

You can blame it on the bubbles.

Todays Photos of A Few Moments to Myself

Last weekend, I was fortunate enough to have a whole three hours to myself. Thomas was at a birthday party and Kei took Samuel to the hockey giving me some time to do… well… whatever I wanted.

I could have used that time to clean up the house or do the laundry, but instead I decided to take a little trip downtown to soak up some photography inspiration. It began with a Vivian Maier exhibition at the Blue Sky Gallery (highly recommend), continued with an unexpected stop at the Charles. A. Hartman Gallery next door to take in some Danny Lyon and, after a stop at Peetes to pick up a truly indulgent cup of coffee, ended in the photography book section of Powells.

After three hours I felt fully recharged and inspired. I’d say that’s time well spent.

This is Four and a Half (don’t forget the half)

Inspired by a post I read on Ali Edward’s blog, I decided to interview each of my children. You can my interview with Thomas here. Today it’s Samuel’s turn.

Samuel at Four and a Half

My favorite food: Watermelon, pizza, kiwi, candy
My favorite movie: Peter Pan and Star Wars
The coolest person on earth: Wizards
My favorite thing to do at school: Making stuff and writing letters
The thing I do most awesomely: Being good
If I could go anywhere in the world, I’d go to: The ice cream place and Disney World
My favorite color: Blue, Gold, Yellow and Silver
When I grow up, I’m going to become: A Ninja
The thing my parents are too strict about: Me being too mean to Mummy and Daddy
My favorite band: The Beatles
The book I’m reading: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Two words that describe me: Smart, Good at Soccer
When I was little, I used to: Suck on everything
My favorite season of the year: Winter
The snack I could live on: Candy, raisins
The food that makes me want to puke: Tomatoes
My best friend: Xander
If I had one wish it would be: Defeating every bad guy in the world
My best memory is: When I first became Xander’s friend

Excuse the crop on the photo but Samuel was a moving target and I was determined to get a photo of him in this outfit. He’s all dressed up for an emergency soccer game should the need arise, but also for the chilly weather. Smart kid.

This Is Seven

Inspired by a post I read on Ali Edward’s blog, I decided to interview each of my children. I was going to wait until their birthday’s but things change so quickly around here that I decided to just do it now. I’m sure the answers will be different in just a few short months.

I interviewed both boys at the same time but next time I’ll try and do them separately. You’ll see someone similarities in their responses. Samuel, for instance,was thrilled to discover that Candy could be considered a favorite food after Thomas added it to his list.

The most surprising part of this process for me, was realizing how excited they each were to answer my questions. They asked for more after I was done.

Today’s responses come from my favorite seven year old. 4 (and a half) year old answer will be posted tomorrow.

Thomas at Seven 

My favorite food: Candy and Pizza
My favorite movie: Harry Potter
The coolest person on earth: My family
My favorite thing to do at school: Choosing time and drawing
The thing I do most awesomley: Everything
If I could go anywhere in the world, I’d go to: Legoland and Disneyland
My favorite color: Yellow, gold and silver
When I grow up, I’m going to become: A ninja
The thing my parents are too strict about: Too much video game and TV time
My favorite band: The Beatles
The book I’m reading: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Three words that describe me: Funny, clever and strong
When I was little, I used to: Pee on my Mum and Dad
My favorite season of the year: Autumn
The snack I could live on: Candy and Pizza
The food that makes me want to puke: Tomatoes
My best friend: Kentaro, Aiden, Peter, Nick, Raiu, Max, Grant, Charlie, Carter
If I had one wish it would be: That candy would be good for you
My best memory is: When I was playing with Grant

Screw You St. Valentine, but Thanks for the Love Notes

For me, Valentine’s Day isn’t about love and flowers and chocolates (although I unexpectedly received some chocolates this year). o, for a mother of two school-age children who happens to live in America, Valentine’s Day is about making a last-minute stop at the store to buy packs of Valentines that are really just cleverly disguised advertisements for superhero merchandise. It’s about making your children write their name and, for Thomas someone else’s name, on 25-27 valentines over three evenings because that is just too many to do in one night after school. It’s about the crazy mess that is distributing said valentines to individual envelopes at 8am when you’ve already missed the first school bell. I also carpool so add one more child to the mix and that’s at least 75 valentine cards to be distributed before 8:30am.

Somewhere, St. Valentine is sitting up in the clouds and laughing at the chaos he created. It’s enough for me to come up with a Bah Humbug! alternative for this very special, most romantic, day of the year.

Still, this year did bring a couple of unexpectedly sweet Valentine moments thanks to a couple of boys who now have the ability to write and who have way more sentimentality than their mother.

Like this little surprise message from Samuel. Who says you can’t say it on a post-it note?

And he was kind enough to give me really long legs.

Thomas wrote a very special Valentine for his crush. Translation: To Sabrina. From Thomas. 2013.

It came complete with a photograph of himself, of course. I love that he calls out the day and date of their last playtime.

And then finished off with a heart.

Both boys have been working on letter writing at school so I also want to share a couple of special notes that we’ve received over the last few days.

From “your friend” Samuel. I’m particularly impressed by the hiragana.

And this one from “your son” Thomas.

Receiving letters from my boys may be my new favorite thing, but I don’t need them with a side of candy hearts.