August 28, 2008

How did I get so lucky?

This is a surprise post for my lovely gal. Isn't she beautiful?

And she is just oh so smart and witty and creative and fun.
It all just keeps getting better and better.

We are less than a month away from the 25th anniversary of our first date.
That is a day I will always remember.
Sept 21, 1983. Kiss Kiss Sweet Lover!

August 27, 2008

And She's Off

First day of school here for Claire. We found her classroom and met her 4th grade teacher last night, and I think she's excited, at least to see her friends at recess again! When we went to her classroom, her teacher had written instructions on the board telling the kids what to do with their supplies and Claire started whining about how she needed our help. I thought my god kid, if you can't follow basic instructions by now you're in a world of hurt! And then I thought I've ruined her by doing so much for her and that's why she can't do this, so I left her there and went to help Ben get some ice cream. Tough lessons, but there are some things you just have to do on your own, and 4th grade is one of them. She's so close to being a grown-up, but still so very close to being a baby!

As for Ben, he really wants nothing to do with kindergarten, and I found him crying downstairs this morning because he didn't want to get dressed and go. Imagine his delight when I told him that I got the day wrong and he won't be starting until tomorrow. He's engrossed in Sponge Bob right now and loving his life! But I have a pretty clear vision of what my Thursday morning is going to look like...

August 22, 2008

Mom's Night Off

Wednesday night, completely out of the blue, Claire decided she was going to make dinner for us.

She put on an apron and made a menu, which included a choice of banana smoothie, root beer or water to drink, saltine crackers with salsa for appetizers, and fruit salad and leftover meatloaf for the main course.

She went out to the garden to pick fresh flowers and set this beautiful table, rolling our silverware up in a paper towel and taping it closed. Her final touch was sprinkling foam butterflies and dragonflies randomly across the table top.

There's no doubt that she's growing up and I absolutely encourage her culinary interests. Just wish the cleaning up of the creative masterpieces sparked her as much as the making of them!

August 21, 2008

Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

This has been the discussion around our dinner table lately. Last night we all learned to count to ten.

What an exciting life change. I can hardly wrap my head around it right now.

1st Ever Guest Post

I am truly honored that Kristi is allowing me to guest post and I hope to maintain the quality writing standard.

NEWS: We have a furnished apartment in Jena, Germany. It's a small 750 sq ft, 2 BR loft with charm near everything including dear friends. 10 min walk to city center, 1/2 hr walk to work. So I guess this is really going to happen!

Here is one of my favorite pictures from my bike ride around Holland. I call it, "boat leak on the Amsel".

It appears there will me more photos from Europe coming to a blog near you soon.

Thanks for the Opportunity, Kristi! Kiss Kiss.
I will love you until the ocean wears diapers to keep it's bottom dry.

August 20, 2008

I'm Not Gonna Apologize......Just Enjoy the Post

My really cool and amazing 13-year-old sister Callie recently came to stay with us for 2 weeks and was privileged enough to attend the annual Jones Family Campout at Mt. Rainier Nat'l Park. The mountain was the most gorgeous I've ever seen it and our stay at Ohanpecosh with the family was wonderful. Callie felt right at home with Mark's family and it was wonderful to be able to share her with them. I'd like to say she spent her time contemplating the wonders of nature's beauty, but I think she was more contemplating the possibility of a signal on her cell!

Trying to get the kids geared up for the first day of school next Wednesday, but the Olympics are keeping us up late every night. Ben was apprehensive about starting Kindergarten at the beginning of the summer, but as time has progressed he is beginning to see the advantages of not hanging with me all the boring day long. Claire and her best friend Emily have been doing so many sleepovers I'm not really sure whose kid is whose anymore or where they might end up sleeping at night. She's really gotten into reading chapter books this summer, which makes my heart sing. Now if I could just convince one of them to learn to play the piano!!

If you haven't already heard, it looks like there's a six-month excursion to Germany looming in our near future. It came upon us a little suddenly, but we've always wanted to spend some time living somewhere else besides the U.S.A. The Max Plank Institute in East Germany has offered Mark a temporary position working on what he calls "a really sexy project" and we're going. We'll be leaving after the first of the year and my life has suddenly become very busy with the details of such an adventure. I'm sure you'll hear so much more about it in the months to come. Anyone looking for a part-time job as a German tutor?

For those of you who have been witness to my recent hormonal imbalances, there may be relief for you. A nodule has been discovered on my thyroid and my doctors and I are in the process of finding out more. A "nodule" was unfortunately the worst of my three possibilities, meaning it will have to be biopsied and dealt with, but the chances that it is cancerous are slim and if it does turn out to be so, thyroid cancer is almost always treatable. I'm going to hope for benign, thank my lucky stars I may soon have an answer for my mood swings, and try to get my shit together where my health is concerned. It's obvious I'm not getting any younger.

I'm adding Mark as a poster to this blog; he thinks he can do a better job of keeping up than me so say hi when you see him around. He'll certainly never have my flair (LOL) but I'm willing to share the spotlight! And for my long lost friends, I will be in touch with you very soon. Thanks for your kind words.