Wednesday, November 15, 2017

And My Favorite Is...

Good evening, it is Wednesday.

We are all settling in to a dark world. As in ever since we turned the clocks back, it is always dark. We go to school and work in the dark, and get home in the dark. So how do you beat the dark? If you ask Maren, she will tell you: Christmas songs on the radio, and Christmas movies on the TV. All the time. Well, not quite, but you get the idea. So what about Thanksgiving? Hmmm...
We have not been doing Thankful leaves this year, but maybe we will do a few over Thanksgiving break. This one appeared on my FB memory wall from several years ago.
No leaves doesn't mean we're not thankful. We helped with the HOME project again this year, feeding homeless men a host church. The kids and the grandparents have helped a couple times this season.
The girls in the family are thankful that this store opened up just a couple miles from our house a week ago. This photo doesn't show the line around the block on opening day. The first 100 got a gift bag, and while Maren and Lillie showed up before opening, they probably missed the first 100 by a few hundred!
While going through all the hoops of trying to unclog a drain in the kitchen (which may be beyond my abilities as I've already taken everything apart, used a plumbers snake, plungered, and gone to chemicals, yet it is still clogged. At least I got to be Santa for a moment. We have not decided on a tree this year. Flareon will probably destroy any tree we have, but most likely we will have one. Lillie wants to either get a snow covered sparkly artificial tree, or go cut a real one. I feel like we've cut trees every year, but Lillie doesn't believe we've ever had a real tree. Preston probably still remembers the squirrel jumping out of our tree while on the tree shaker! I guess Lillie was probably like 6 years old last time we cut a tree down. Hmm.
Sneak peek at Lille's best ugly Christmas sweater we picked up this evening. It might even have lights! Maybe someday you'll get to see:)

See you tomorrow.

Sunday, November 05, 2017

Stranger Post.

Good evening, it is Sunday.

5:23pm and it's been dark for over a half hour! Setting the clocks back, bah humbug. On the flip side, it did snow here for half the day, and Lillie got tons of photos (none of which I have access to) of the snow!
Did you ever get to see Lillie and Hansen's pumpkins on display? We had a decent number of Trick-or-Treaters, and they all loved the pumpkins.
Mad Magizine! Maren got me a subscription to Mad magazine for free somewhere. The magazine is just as crude as it was when I was a kid. The title to this one is Stranger Things. I've watched a couple episodes of this TV show, and I really liked it. The 1980's setting is great. But the way Netflix releases these shows in a whole season, well, that is not for me. The kids have been binge watching Stranger Things, where one episode a week would be about right for me.
Saturday, after 8 weeks of classes, Maren and I completed a half day emergency simulation at the local fire department. Then we were given these fancy vests, a t-shirt, and a CERT approved certificate. It is a very interesting class that I'd recommend anyone attending.
This parking pass was for my car. I took a 5 hour test at the GRC testing center. The WEST B test is required to apply to a teacher certification class. With alternate routes in the pipelines, I hope to complete one of these year long courses in the not so distance future. That said, my job is changing as well. I found our earlier in the year that my ELL job at the local high school would be ending at the end of the year. So I've been proactively looking for a new job so I land somewhere I'd like to be. It is back to the elementary school for me. My last day of my current job is Wednesday. Thursday I start as an LAP paraeducator at a different local elementary school.

See you tomorrow.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Turtles All The Way Down Tour.

Good evening, it is Monday.

We are relaxing and watching The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown this evening. Just trying to recover from one of the best weekends ever. Friday evening I drove up to WWU to pick up Preston. Once home he and Lillie carved pumpkins. Saturday it was off to See Aladdin at the Paramount. It was wonderful. Saturday evening Hansen and Lillie went to a Halloween party while Preston and I went to the movies. But most of that was last blog post, Sunday we drove back up to WWU to see one of our favorite authors and his brother, John and Hank Green. These are the guys behind Nerdfighters, and a vlogbrothers. They were great!
We stopped at Alderwood mall on the way. Macaroni Grill was our lunch destination. The kids all ordered matcher pizzas! Thanks Mel for the gift card for my birthday!
Turtles All The Way Down is John Green's new book that this tour is promoting. We all now have our own signed copy. Of course, the book came out on October 10th (another Julian birthday reference!) and not only did we get a copy that day, Hansen read it that night! We may have a copy of the book hanging around if you'd like to borrow it.
This photo cracks me up. I kind of thought Hansen may slide over toward the cardboard Hank Green, but nope, instead it looks like Hank us just giving a thumbs up while they get their photo with cardboard John Green. Yes, we did see them in person just a short time after this photo was taken. The most amazing thing about this evening is just how happy the entire auditorium was to see John and Hank. These two do such great work, and encourage such positivity all over the world. The energy was just amazing. Then we dropped Preston off at this house, made the drive home in the dark, and after a short sleep, enjoyed our Monday!

See you tomorrow.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Aladdin and The Robinsons.

Good morning, it is Sunday.

Reformation 500! Actually, Halloween day will mark the 500th anniversary since Martin Luther defiantly nailed a copy of his 95 Theses to the door of the Wittenberg Castle Church. With the timely invention of the printing press, his ideas kind of went viral, and the rest is history. Of course, you can research this very easily with your smart phone. So, moving on:
Preston is home this weekend for a whirlwind of activities. Yesterday we went to the Paramount Theater in Seattle to see Aladdin. Aladdin never disappoints! Although it hard to beat the production that used to be performed at Disneyland several years back. Today we will drive Preston back to WWU, and while there get to see John and Hank Green on their Turtles All The Way Down tour.
This is interesting. We stopped by Amber's old MacDonald's to grab some food to go. They now have these self order machines. As in you place your order using this kiosk, then pay with CC or take a receipt to the cashier. "Too much automation", says this old grump. The others in my family didn't mind the new system.
Pumpkin carving! We have a couple of very cool pumpkins on the front porch. We have a bowl full of pumpkin seeds waiting to be cooked. And we did have a floor covered in pumpkin guts!
How amazing did Lillie's pumpkin turn out? I know, right.
Hansen and Lillie went to a Key Club Halloween Party last night after we got home from Aladdin. They went as the two main characters from Meet The Robinsons. If you don't this movie, or realize how amazingly perfect these costumes are, here is a pic (from the web) of them from the movie:
Whoa. Perfect huh?
Last photo for today's blog. Maren and I got to learn all about fire extinguishers, and even put out fires last week in our CERT class. This fire starter was really kind of the coolest BBQ ever, but it was fun and interesting. Regular folks don't get the opportunity to use a fire extinguisher all that often. Well, that is certainly the hope isn't it?

See you tomorrow.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Winners!

Good evening, it is Monday.

Ever since updating my iphone and computer to the latest itune and software, I can't get my photos to sync from the cloud to the computer. Groan! Talk about 1st world problems. So I'm back to emailing the photos to myself, whatever. The good news, I've not taken very many photos!
Sunday I got to go to the last regular season game for the Seattle Sounders! I know right! And to boot, we had great seats. Just a few rows up and in the end zone. The area is called the Hawk's Nest when the stadium is being used for Seahawk's games. Thanks to the Sounder's win, they get a first round bye in the playoffs. The photo is a panoramic from when we just showed up. Yes the seats were all full come game time.
This photo I took of the TV. That's right, I watched the recorded game on TV at home in the evening. It is amazing how different in real life is different than on TV. TV may be better, but only if you have real life to fall back on. I'm in this photo, nearly in the very center of the photo, just 3 rows back on the middle section above the right part of the green banner.
Working! Actually this photo is from CERT class. Maren is getting ready to work with a team to lift and crib a very large slab of concrete that has (pretended) to fall on a person in a (fake) emergency. Unfortunately going to this class meant missing Lillie's band concert. Not to worry, John and Carol were at the concert to support our girl!
 How about a silent auction dinner to fundraiser for the school's ASB? Lillie participates with both the band and the Key Club, so some of the the work (and prize winning) will help her programs out for sure. And we were big winners. Well, you know, you buy tickets to attend, then bid on prizes, then pay for the prizes, so winner is a bit of a dubious title. Of course, like the luck I've been blessed with since day one, of the couple hundred folks attending, I won one of three raffles and now have a new KL sweatshirt! The the baskets we "won" were both Halloween themed, so yeah, we will be ready. Just wait till you see the kid's costumes this year! We were out shopping just this evening and found some perfect items. But you'll have to wait another week for the real photos.

See you tomorrow.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Dance Time.

Good morning, it is Sunday.

Last blog post you saw us at the Homecoming football game. When there is a Homecoming game, there is probably a dance to go with it. Last night was the dance.
Lillian and Hansen all ready to go. They both had a fun time, and they certainly looked on point! Afterwards Lillie was saying how fun it was to see all her friends, and how great everyone looked, and how nice everyone was to each other, and how everyone gave each other hugs, and how loud the music was, and... Hansen just laughed.
While Hansen took all of 8 minutes to get ready and go, the paparazzi was in full for force for Lillie.
Auntie Stef came out to help with make-up. John and Carol came over with Pizza.
Speaking of paparazzi, it's photo time! Hah. Lillie was a good sport.

See you tomorrow.

Friday, October 13, 2017

I didn't forget to have a great birthday!

Good morning, it is Friday.

Happy Birthday to me! Happy Birthday to me! My age is even more than the double of 23! LOL, it kind of rhymed in my head:) Actually, while Maren was down in sunny Tuscon Arizona for work, I still had a very nice birthday. My co-workers spoiled me and I ended up with a cake and cookies!
This the view from my side of the table for my birthday dinner at RedRobin! Ironically, Hansen simply didn't eat very many fries, and Lillie did smile.
On the way to RedRobin, we checked the mail, and this signed book was waiting for us. John Green's Turtles All The Way Down. This is even a signed addition and had an extra DFTBA in the jacket, which if you can tell is the sweatshirt that Hansen is wearing in this photo as well.
After dinner Hansen made himself comfortable and read the whole book! A very proud moment for his mama.
Speaking of Maren, she did accompany us to the homecoming football game last night. That's our friend Beth next to Maren.
The band played the halftime show, then set the stage for the introduction of the homecoming court. Lillie is playing her trombone and is standing in the front row on the 43 yard line. With about 3 minutes left before halftime, a huge bolt of lightning struck not very far away, and they had to wait 30 minutes to finish the half, then the band. It turned out to be a long evening, and even though our team lost, it was a fun time.
Lillie also joined the band for the home cross country meet the day before. This was a cool moment from the start of the girls race. About 100 yard out, the band is playing on one side of the track while the football team is cheering the runners on from the other side of the track.
And for your last photo of the day, my co-worker Todd and I dressed alike for twins spirit day (I'm on the right). Todd actually does have a twin brother, I am not him. If I take the jacket off, Lillie and I were dressed alike as well, but she didn't like the photo, so it no longer exists:)

See you tomorrow.

P.S. Thank you to my parents and to my aunts for very nice birthday cards! Now that Maren is back in town, I think I get one more party on Sunday. Yay.