Happy New Year

I have been so bad at keeping up with this blog lately.  We just got back from spending Christmas and New Years in Arizona.  The boys met their cousin Cameron for the first time, which was fun.  They got in one day of swimming in the pool, and also met up with their old daycare friends.

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In other news, PJ is getting glasses next week.  I’ll have to update with a new post when that happens.

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A very wet week!

I don’t know if you’ve seen on the news, but the Portland area has been getting a lot of rain lately.  In the city of Portland, they’ve gotten bout 6 inches of rain in the last 5 days.  I’m not sure if we have more or less than that, but we have had a LOT of flooding here.  The field behind our house is FULL of water and it comes all the way up to the edge of our property behind our backyard.  The boys’ school bus has had to re-route because of road closures.

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Their bus usually goes down this road and then turns near where those rows of trees are on the upper left side.

The school itself hasn’t had any flooding so school has been open as usual.  Speaking of school, I was hired as the school “librarian,” technically, a library clerk since they don’t have librarians anymore.  It’s a pretty sweet gig, only 5 hours a week.  On my off days I can sub for school aides if they need a substitute, and it’s pretty convenient with the kids!

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Happy Halloween!

2015: their idea, the best yet, methinks

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I was looking through my instagram and thinking i need to make another post re-capping a bunch of random fall-ish things.  On to November!

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Parent Teacher Conference Time!

Yesterday we had our first Parent-Teacher conferences of the year.  It’s always an interesting experience to hear things you already know combined with stuff about your kid that you don’t know.  In short, PJ is doing very well and is progressing ahead of schedule with many of the kindergarten benchmarks.  I know a lot of people love to hate on the Common Core standards but I really like them.  It’s easy to find out what is expected of kids at various grade levels and track progress – and knowing that it is the same for all schools is helpful in case we ever move.  PJ’s teacher said he would be in the top reading group if he was a little better with participation in group activities.  He is smart and independent, but doesn’t always like to do what he is supposed to do.  Mmm hmm.

Elliott is doing pretty well in math and reading, and got many compliments for his positive attitude and just generally being a happy kid and eager learner.  He needs to work on staying on task and not chatting up his classmates so much.  He is reading at about a 3rd grade reading level currently, and has been getting into some longer books lately.  Today he also got a compliment from one of his strings teachers about how he is looking very good in class and he is very good at keeping in tune, which is apparently not super common at this point in the class.

PJ had his first field trip to the pumpkin patch yesterday, he had a great time :)  Here he is with our neighbor gal from a few houses over.
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New Routines

Now that both boys are in school we have some new routines we’re all adjusting to.  Elliott started string lessons at the university and we brought home a Cello on tuesday.  He can’t play anything with it yet, but supposedly they have some sort of concert near the end of the semester.  There are university music ed majors helping teach the kids under the supervision of a professor.

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PJ learned about fire drills and safety at school.  He came off the bus looking like this.
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Speaking of the bus, he loves riding it.  We got some new neighbor girls a few houses down, their oldest is in kindergarten also.  It’s fun having lots of kids at the bus stop!
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One day he brought flowers for the principal, his teacher and the secretary.
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This is just a random photo of him posing like a mannequin while we were shopping for jeans.  He asked me to take this picture…so here it is.
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Both boys are pretty exhausted by the end of the day.  We’ve been putting them to bed a bit earlier than usual.  PJ still needs to be woken up in the morning, that kid sure loves to sleep in.  So far we have only had a few over-tired meltdowns, so I’m considering that a back-to-school success.

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First Day of 2nd Grade

Today Elliott had his first day of school.  PJ will start next wednesday, the kinders have to do assessments this week so they start later.
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Blazing NW

It’s still quite hot here.  We’ve had a day or two of cooler temps but for the most part it’s been quite toasty up here in the NW corner of the US.  It’s seriously hindering my plan to refinish our deck this summer.

We have spent our mornings at swim, and ET has progressed nicely, he is in level 5 (6 is the highest level).  PJ is still trucking along in level 2.  He was verrrrrrrrry close to passing it a week ago, and so we’ll see if he can do it this friday.  He’s got a nice small class but his teacher is not one of my favorites.

A few weeks ago we did a race in town to benefit the high school’s cross country team.  Both boys did the kid race, and ET and I did the 5k.  It was his first 5K ever :)  The newspaper came and took pictures of them, though I couldn’t find any pictures of us in the longer race.

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We have also been spending a lot of time at the school (i know, right!!) working in the garden.  It’s starting to look a lot better in there now.

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And last but not least, they tore out our beautiful hazelnut grove across the street and have started the construction process for building a new neighborhood (sob!).  It’s sad but the kids love watching it all happen.2015-07-22 14.23.30

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Summer Fun

It has been such a HOT summer here.  I thought last summer was hot but this year it’s been an extended heat wave with many days in the mid/upper 90’s.  I think a lot of weather records are being broken this year.  We haven’t had any rain in about a month either.  I enjoy it, but it does make it difficult to get outside work get done after the morning hours.
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Both boys have been doing swim lessons.  PJ is getting closer to completing preschool level 2 and Elliott just passed into school age level 5.
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ET sat out this round of lessons to go to string camp again, and we will probably sign him up to play with the string program this fall.  He’s in the middle of this first picture in a black vest.

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He has been singing/humming all the songs he learned at camp while he plays at home.  (adorable)

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What’s new here

Elliott played soccer this spring.  His team named themselves “The Golden Ninjas.” LOL2015_05_3171

PJ liked to pretend he was on the team too.
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We’ve had a nice warm spring here in Oregon.  Even daddy is in on the water gun fights.
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PJ turned five.  FIVE!!!!!!  My best fire truck cake yet.
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And now school is over, I have a kindergartener and a 2nd grader and a lot of swim lessons in our future.

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Aloha from Kauai

If you’ve seen my Instagram you may have suspected that I was not in Oregon, and you’d be correct. Last Friday Evan and I (no kids, weeeee) arrived in Kauai for 10 year anniversary vacation. Yes, TEN YEARS (ok fine, 10 years in June. I’m rounding up!) Is kinda hard to believe!

Anyway, if I ever come into money, I would get a place in Kauai in a heartbeat. I have been to Oahu before, but like a million years ago. The magic of Kauai is that it is small, rural and therefore more unspoiled and drop-dead gorgeous. Wild chickens wander everywhere. Wild orchids grow all over the place.

The beaches are beautiful, and very different than Oregon’s. In Oregon we have more typical low/high tides and the beach looks very different depending on the tide. Here the coast is steeper, which means much shorter beaches, not ugh tide change and CRAZY BIG waves. I have seen surfers in CA but they have nothing on the north shore out here. I won’t go out in the water past my knees because the waves will come every so often above your waist and they are wicked strong. There are tally signs everywhere keeping track of drownings 😳

For the past week we have been hanging out at a condo on the north shore and then tomorrow we will venture south. We hiked along the Na Pali coast, which was pretty awesome/hardcore for us. Today we kayaked along the Hanalei river. I have to type all this now because I’m sure my arms will fall off tomorrow.

I didn’t take my big camera because we are traveling light and Google has better pictures than I could take here. These are my phone pics:

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