Finding and creating adventures in everyday life.

Leave a comment

Photo a Day 2016 – Days 269-283

Day 269 – Had a lovely tea party with the family.


Day 269 2016

Day 270 – Missed it. Dang it.

Day 271 – Practice, practice, practice.


Day 271 2016

Day 272 – Zane at a karate class – mostly focused.


Day 272 2016

Day 273 – Autumn has arrived.


Day 273 2016

Day 274 – Ya gotta have faith.


Day 274 2016

Day 275 – Checkers.


Day 275 2016

Day 276 – Out with the Girls for a birthday treat. Had absinthe for the first time and it was amazing.


Day 276 2016

Day 277 – Sometimes your kids struggle and get stuck, it’s hard to see. Then they work hard and overcome it. Jump the hurdle Zane!


Day 277 2016

Day 278 – Sad face, another miss.

Day 279 – Jude surrounded by some of the things he loves. Books about science, karate, Minecraft, his video camera tripod.and fancy drink stirrers.His room is also a mess.


Day 279 2016

Day 280 – Block man, just having a chill out.


Day 280 2016

Day 281 – My lovely book necklace that my sister gave to me.


Day 281 2016

Day 282 – First pumpkins of the season!


Day 282 2016

Day 283 – Cool clouds over the Lava Lands.


Day 283 2016


Leave a comment

Photo a Day 2016 – Days 259-268

Day 259 – Spider web! I really don’t like spiders, their webs can be quite beautiful though.


Day 259 2016

Day 260 – It’s Fall! Candles and coziness.


Day 260 2016

Day 261 – Leaping!


Day 261 2016

Day 262 – The leaves are falling.


Day 262 2016

Day 263 – Macrame. My Grandma used to macrame and I’ve always loved it, but have been very intimidated by the process. I finally bit the bullet and did a very simple design. I would like to try some more complicated designs, but so glad that I finally went for it and just did it!


Day 263 2016

Day 264 – I love our dojo. Doing karate is such a challenging and overwhelming experience. I love the way things are done in out dojo – it’s tough, it’s hard, the standards are high. At the same time there is so much love and encouragement. This is one of our senseis receiving a black gi which is a big deal.


Day 264 2016

Day 265 – Shooting into the Sun.


Day 265 2016

Day 266 – Birthday Self-Portrait. More and more myself, everyday.


Day 266 2016

Day 267 – Living Room camp out. The boys and Daddy love to sleep downstairs in the living room.


Day 267 2016

Day 268 – This is Colin, on his birthday, teaching kids at church. He really is so talented in many ways – musically, intellectually, humorously and he’s great at teaching. I love watching him lead and guide his own kids and the kids at church. He’s pretty cool.


Day 268 2016

Leave a comment

Photo a Day 2016 – Days 249-258

Day 249 – Labor Day cornhole. Mom, Dad and Jake.


Day 249 2016

Day 250 – Climbers


Day 250 2016

Day 251 – First day of school – Brothers and Best Friends


Day 251 2016

Day 252 – Punch!


Day 252 2016

Day 253 – Sunflower at Sunset


Day 253 2016

Day 254 – Jake after a hard day of putting together IKEA furniture.


Day 254 2016

Day 255 – The system that the boys use to climb the fence to turn the water on.


Day 255 2016

Day 256 – Even scratchy, prickly weeds can be beautiful.


Day 256 2016

Day 257 – Karate and the rising moon.


Day 257 2016

Day 258 – The boys and their neighbor friends have created an impressive river system in our front yard.


Day 258 2016

Leave a comment

Photo a Day 2016 – Days 240-248

Day 240 – Beautiful buck in one of our city parks.

Day 240 2016

Day 240 2016

Day 241 – Brilliant clouds over Pilot Butte.

Day 241 2016

Day 241 2016

Day 242 – Sunseting.

Day 242 2016

Day 242 2016

Day 243 – Jude and his portrait of Checkers.

Day 243 2016

Day 243 2016

Day 244 – Cuddles with Checkers.

Day 244 2016

Day 244 2016

Day 245 – Open House at School. Hard to believe that Summer is almost over.

Day 245 2016

Day 245 2016

Day 246 – Sunset at Cultus Lake.

Day 246 2016

Day 246 2016

Day 247 – Sunshine through leaves.

Day 247 2016

Day 247 2016

Day 248 – This spider on my front porch is just way too big.

Day 248 2016

Day 248 2016

Leave a comment

Photo a Day 2016 – Days 228-239

Day 228 – Jake the Dog. Look at those eyes!

Day 228 2016

Day 228 2016

Day 229 – Bachelor Button

Day 229 2016

Day 229 2016

Day 230 – Zane on a Rock

Day 230 2016

Day 230 2016

Day 231 – Sunset Bay State Park at Sunset

Day 231 2016

Day 231 2016

Day 232 – Southern Oregon Coast

Day 232 2016

Day 232 2016

Day 233 – Sandpiper and those gorgeous driftwood greys.

Day 233 2016

Day 233 2016

Day 234 – Mount Thielsen

Day 234 2016

Day 234 2016

Day 235 – Tree

Day 235 2016

Day 235 2016

Day 236 – Pine cone on the sidewalk

Day 236 2016

Day 236 2016

Day 237 – When he says he wants to talk, you have a talk. Thankful for my chats with this sensitive, deep young man.

Day 237 2016

Day 237 2016

Day 238 – Obsidian Flow. Newberry Crater. It amazes me that a tree can put down its roots in a rocky outcropping in rock dust and live and grow.

Day 238 2016

Day 238 2016

Day 239 – My Boys.

Day 239 2016

Day 239 2016


Leave a comment

Stances and My Laid Back Boy

003 Stances

001 Stances

I love my Zane. He is a bundle of joy and fun and frustration. He doesn’t have a hustle bone in his body, he doesn’t understand the concept of hurry. He wants to play and chat and have fun and tell jokes and get to know you and spend time with you and invite everyone round for a playdate. Like I said, joy and frustration. Frustration only because we do live in a world that has schedules and clocks and you do have to focus in class to be able to learn, but his love of people and sharing are a great joy.

010 Stances

007 Stances

Karate is hard. It’s fun, it’s invigorating, it’s exciting. It’s also tough and it requires focus and sharpness. It’s not a natural sport for a laid back, chilled out boy. Zane loves karate. He knows the stuff – his self-defenses, his katas, the Japanese. He takes his time with it all and that’s good, but it can also be a hindrance because speed is important too. He’s also not particularly competitive and isn’t upset when others pass him on their way to higher belts.

004 Stances

009 Stances

Then there are the stances. Stances are the things that Zane gets dinged for most of the time. He has trouble doing deep stances consistently. He knows how to do them, but when he’s in the middle of a kata, he sometimes forgets or gets distracted.

008 Stances

011 Stances

He really wants to get to his next belt and prays every night that God will help him to get there. He’s also working on practicing his stances. While we were at the Oregon coast recently, he was constantly jumping into his horse stance when I took his photo. Jude did some stances too, but he did lots of different stances and even made up some of his own. Zane was focused on that horse stance which is featured prominently in one of the yellow belt katas.

006 Stances

013 Stances

It’s hard to see your children struggle, to not rise to the top and shine brilliantly, but it is a deep joy to see them dig deep and persist and practice and do their best. It’s hard to struggle yourself, to feel like you’re not sure if you can do what needs to be done, to forget the things you’ve learned in a fog a weariness and sweat and self-doubt. For our whole family, karate has been about so much more than working out or learning cool moves. I don’t know when any of us will get our blue belts, but when we do, I will know how much was involved in getting there – especially for my laid back Zane.

012 Stances

005 Stances002 Stances

Leave a comment

Campfires are Magical

005 CampfiresCampfires create a special sort of magic. I have no idea how many campfires I’ve sat around with family and friends over the years, but I know they have been filled with laughter and conversation and shared secrets and jokes, and history.

We’ve just returned from 3 nights of camping on the Oregon coast and it was lovely. Adventures and beauty and fun.

We had a campfire every night and on a couple of mornings. I love how we gather round and all get involved. Jude has learned a lot about campfires from Grandpa and he has become a master at making wood shavings to start our fires. We try very hard to not use any accelerants and it’s a fun challenge for us all to make it happen.

006 Campfires

One night around the fire, we told a one word at a time story where everyone gets to add one word to our story. The stories are usually odd and funny – this night was no exception. Smokey Bear was actually a chicken and then Donald Duck and Donald Trump were causing trouble, so they were sent to a town in Iceland called Hawaii. Barrack Obama came along and saved the day and then he agreed to stay on as president for a while longer. There was a bunch of other stuff that happened, but I can’t remember it all.  No idea where all this was coming from, but we laughed so much. It was magical.

004 CampfiresAnother night, we had a wide-ranging conversation that began with a question about lawyers and the law – we discussed the justice system we have in the United States, its flaws and the many good things about it. We moved on to family and vows and had an amazing time talking about the ways we are similar and the ways we are different and how cool that is. Jude and I are so much alike, but there are also ways in which Colin and Jude are alike – they are both good debaters and would make great lawyers. Zane and Colin are very much alike, but Zane and I are alike in ways too. Zane and I both are peacemakers and very empathetic.

001 Campfires

Making cool shapes in the smoke with flashlights.

We are all working hard to earn our next belt in karate – blue, so we went around and each said what we thought we needed to work on so that we would be ready to test.  Me – Japanese and kihon drills, Colin – kihon drills, Jude – kiais, Zane – stances!

We talked about empathy and the importance of thinking about how others feel and what circumstances they might be coming from. We talked about lying and being trustworthy.

003 CampfiresThen, out of the blue, Jude said that he thinks of life as a journey and there are times when you are at a petrol station and you get fueled up and then there are ramps and jumps and those might be hard and scary, but they can be exciting and fun too.

Then Zane said he thought about the good times in life being filled with light and like day time and the sad, hard times being dark and night time. So we talked about how even at night, there are cool things like campfires and stars and fireworks – so there can be joy and light in the darkness.

I cried when I thought about these amazing 9 and 7 year old boys  – how thoughtful and deep, how the whole conversation had flowed and how blessed and full I felt.  And then things got silly again and we laughed and played. And I’m telling you, campfires are magical.002 Campfires