Wordless Wednesday: Winter Wonderland

Photos captured during the Portland snowstorm of January, 2017.

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Snow Crazy 2017

We’re preparing for another possible bout of freezing rain to come through Portland tomorrow. It’s been a tough winter for this snow-phobic Aussie, and I find myself flipping regularly through photos of our Costa Rican vacation and longing for a little sunshine.

I’m not alone. The common refrain from fellow working parents when we see a snowflake on the weather forecast is “Noooooooo”! Thankfully the kids already have the day off tomorrow for teacher planning so we won’t have to contemplate the logistics of adding yet another day to the end of the school year.

Still, I have to admit that I enjoy the first day or two of snowfall when everything is  covered in a bright, white blanket and the sound of the neighborhood is muffled. It’s by day 3 or 4 when the blanket starts to turns different shades of brown and yellow and we all start feeling like shut ins that I find the snow unbearable.

But I have to admit that snow in the sunshine can be pretty….

 

We, The People

In true Portland fashion, it rained on Saturday. Actually, it poured.

Which only mattered a little bit because after exiting a very crowded train, we walked to a very crowded waterfront where we found ourselves in a very crowded space under the Morrison bridge…and out of the rain.

Yes, it was crowded – a wonderful problem to have when you’re attending a March in support of the rights of women and so much more.

Because this was never just about womens’ rights for me (although that is SO important). It was about a community coming together to fight against a government that so clearly wants to roll back the clock, isolate America from the rest of the world, disenfranchise groups like immigrants, the LGBT and the disabled, and make sure the rich get richer while the poor and middle classes are left without easy access to the basic necessities like education and healthcare.

I am a woman and an immigrant but I am so, so fortunate. I grew up in a country where healthcare was a free and basic right for everyone, where a woman’s right to choose what happens to her body was not at risk of being taken away and where I had access to a good tertiary education, without needing to take a student loan.

And, although I am an immigrant, I am white, middle class, and speak with an accent that most people find endearing rather than threatening. I have a job that provides health insurance and I live well above the poverty line. My privilege makes it my responsibility to stand up and make sure others have the opportunities that I’ve been granted simply because of where I was born and what I look like.

That’s what this march was about for me.

Thank you Portland for showing me that I am surrounded by like-minded neighbors who value these things as much as I do. 100,000 people stood with me on Saturday (yes, we stood more than we moved) and I feel like this is just the beginning. Our President says his election is the beginning of a movement and I think he’s right – he’s just mistaken about the direction we’re going.

We, the people. Not the individuals, the people.

This is just the beginning.

It’s Been Too Long

6 months of silence. 6 months of too much working and not enough blogging. I miss this space where I shared adventures and recorded our family’s stories. I miss writing (and I NEVER though I’d say that).

So it’s time to start again. It’s time to take my camera out of the cupboard and re-ignite my love for photography. It’s time to get over the fact that I may have to share snowy photos in July and just share them. I’m proud of the photos and the stories behind them.

So I’m starting tonight. Welcoming 2016 just a few months later than expected. It’s been a busy six months with skiing and snow shoeing and a trip to Florida and last days of school. It’s time to start sharing again.

After 3 days of 90+ temperatures in June, Thomas said: “I wish we could go back to the old days of Portland…you know when it used to snow sometimes”.

Well my son, you got your wish.

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More to come.

Cousins, Old and New

I am way behind on photo editing and, in fact, haven’t even pulled out my camera in a few weeks. Life has been busy as I embark on a new job and a new adventure but I hope to get back in the swing of daily photography again soon. I’m lacking inspiration and feel the need to read more photography books and walk around with my camera just to remind myself about why I love it so much. I know I’ll look back on this photography drought when I pull together our 2015 photobook and yearn for the photos that are missing. I can’t let that happen.

I’m going way back to April for this post when a new cousin (and another, more familiar one) came to visit. While they only stayed for a few days, I managed to squeeze in a lot of baby snuggling time – even taking a nap while he lay on my chest. I know a lot of people don’t enjoy the new baby months with the feeding and the crying and the sleep deprivation. I choose to remember the cuddles and the way my babies moulded with my body in a way that rarely happens with a squirmy toddler or boy. I’m so grateful for this short time with Max during peak-snuggle time so I could experience it once more.

The boys appreciated time to bond with their new cousin and share more playtime with Charlie. While it had been four months since we’d seen them in Australia, they managed to pick up right where they left off.

I think I caught these two in the middle of some sort of mischief.