Sunday, October 26, 2014


Good evening, it is Sunday.

I just posted about Hansen's Affirmation of Baptism, but I have a bunch of other great photos to share that I never got around to earlier in the week. I will figure out a witty title for this post as I go, enjoy:

The kids and I carved pumpkins the other day. My pumpkin is the basic jack-o-lantern you see in the top photo. With all the creativeness in the world, sometimes it is good to hold onto the basics. We do have some very fancy pumpkins out front, but I have yet to put candles in them and snap a photo in all their glory.

I took Lillie to her school's Boo Bash.  A Halloween themed dance. Lillie had a great time goofing with her friends.  It was a spooktacular time for sure.

Hansen went to a Halloween party put on by his school's Key Club. Funny how smart kids like to dress up as nerds! Hansen actually dressed up as one of his favorite authors, John Green. He even made his hair to look John Greenish. Hansen chose this quote and a friend of his made this shirt. Every time I read this quote, I somehow read the ninth word wrong (see blog title). In the top picture Hansen is posing as a Nerdfighter. I just googled nerdfighter and this is the actual definition:

  1. Nerdfighters, as defined by co-founders Hank and John Green, are a friendly, nerdy community of people made of awesome. That's right. Nerdfighters have evolved past the normal requirements of flesh and bone and instead of blood, they bleed awesome.

Speaking of Awesome, check out Lillie's poems that happen to be hanging on the wall outside of her school classroom. I spied them when at her goal setting conference on Wednesday. Lillie is truly one of a kind, and she always has a sunny attitude!
And for your last picture of the day. Frolfing with Preston. Actually disc golfing, but he and his friends call it "frolfing", for frisbee golfing. Preston has gotten quite good at this game. Today he soundly beat me, but I did get two pars! Some folks are quite serious carrying their discs in a special bag and everything. The semi-serious frolfers use an old backpack to carry their discs. Today I dug out the perfect backpack for Preston. An old green L.L. Bean backpack that my grandpa Sandler gave me back when I was just a kid. How cool is that? Very cool.

See you tomorrow.

Hansen's Affirmation.

Good evening, it is Sunday.

Today was not only Reformation Sunday, but it was also Hansen's Affirmation of his Baptism. He and one other fellow couldn't be there for the larger group earlier in the year, so today was their day.
Hansen is on the left. They got to wear these fancy robes. Looking sharp indeed! Yes, that is the pastor in the middle. The Bible verse that Hansen chose is 2 Peter 3:9 which reads: The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
Maren and I even got to be in a picture. One very nice thing about today was since there were only two kids being confirmed there was enough room for all of us to go up with Hansen. Usually it is only the parents, but today John, Carol, Stefanie, Preston, and Lillie also came up with us. How great was that? Very great.
After church Maren's folks took the whole gang out to lunch at IHOP. Yum! Here are Maren, Stef, and Mel. It was nice for everyone to visit for sure. Maren and Carol just finished long stints on jury duty so it was nice for them to debrief.
Avery and Lillie wanted to look at my phone for a minute.  I think my phone looked at them.
Hi Preston! My toughest decision of the day was what to eat for lunch. I chose a Colorado omelet. Yum! And yes, Hansen did keep his boutonniere. Wonderful day!

See you tomorrow.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Pumpkins in concert

Good evening, it is Sunday.

Today was a record setting day around these parts.  No, I'm not talking about Peyton Manning breaking Brett Farve's all time touchdown passing record.  I'm talking about temperature.  The previous high in Seattle for 10/19 was 70 degrees and today it was 72 degrees!  So after church it was off to the pumpkin patch.
This is the same pumpkin patch we've been going to for some time now.  Here are Hansen and Lillie lounging on an old tractor.  Yes, the sun is so bright that they had to look to the side...or are they watching the cow cross the street?
Lillie and Maren on another old tractor.  Old things are kind of the theme of this pumpkin patch, which I think is very cool.
While I put the pumpkins in the car, Hansen and Lillie went to check out the cow and the pigs.  Lillie actually wanted to go pet this cow!  Hansen was fine with it, he had his camera and would certainly get the shot of Lillie being kicked into the sky.  So yeah, I kept her away.  I'd say we were close enough...
Before we left Maren found a skitzy cat to hang with.  Lillie figures this cat was the kitten we saw last year.  Hmm.
I almost finished this blog post without a single photo of a pumpkin!  We found three pumpkins and they threw in one for free.  See all the pumpkins behind this strange train?  Well, you grab a cart and go find yourself the pumpkin you like.  It is entirely possible that there is not a single pumpkin grown at this pumpkin patch, but hey, we like it here so it's all good.

Now for that concert:
Lillie decided to join Preston as he warmed up for his fall band concert.  I'm not so sure she really helped the warm up process, but fun was had for sure.  The band always puts on quite a show, I will be curious to see if Lillie sticks with music as Preston has all these years.

See you tomorrow.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Freaking Awesome!

Good afternoon, it is Sunday.

Last night was the 2014 Homecoming dance for the boy's school.  This year they both attended.  OK, I will stop typing and just show a couple of pictures.
Getting ready for the evening.  Maren, Lillie and I were driving Hansen to his date's house then off to dinner.  Preston was on his own, driving he and his date.  No, Preston didn't wear shorts, he just wasn't leaving quite as early as the rest of us.
Hansen and Hannah exchanging flowers.
How handsome are these two?  After dropping them off at dinner (they ate with a large group of friends) Maren, Lillie and I went to the Golden Peacock for my birthday dinner.  Yum!
While at dinner we received this picture of the kids via text message from Jim (Heidi's dad).  Photo bomb selfie?
 And an actual picture.  Looking great for sure!  We actually got to see Preston and Heidi in person for just a moment at Preston swung by to pick up his dance tickets after they ate dinner.  And speaking of homecoming tickets, this is the back side of every printed ticket for the dance:
How's that for a dose of precaution?  Hilarious actually.  Hmm, I may have to google "freaking", on second thought, I don't want to know.  I'm sure any student who actually read the back of the ticket was like, "really?"
Hansen warming up for all the fancy dancing he was going to be doing at the dance.  No, not really.  I'm guessing he didn't do too much dancing as his date is on crutches recovering from knee surgery. He is just trying out my new treadmill for just a minute before leaving for the dance.  I hope to be doing plenty of running on it very soon.

See you tomorrow.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

A Curious Thing.

Good morning, it is Saturday.

Yesterday was a fun day to have a birthday.  So, yeah, Happy Birthday to me!  I'm now 315!  In dog years.  I hear that I don't look a day over 300.  There was no school or work for me as yesterday was a teacher workshop.  So instead I hung around and waited for my birthday present to myself to arrive.
Yup, it came in a very big truck!  What can it be?  This is so exciting!
A treadmill!  At least its not a vacuum cleaner.  Last night I built the thing, and this morning I ran my first 30 minutes on the thing.  Now that I'm over the hill, I can just use the incline feature to feel like I'm still on the way up.  Groan.
Yesterday Evening I found myself at the boy's school's Homecoming football game.  Yes, this weekend is Homecoming.  Both boys have dates and are going to the dance tonight.  So stay tuned for more pictures later.  This picture is of the cross country team running the game ball to the game.  They relayed the ball from the school to the field, about 10 miles.  Hansen ran the first leg.
The band was playing some great music as usual.  Preston is in the very center of this photo.  I snapped this photo while the band played Huey Lewis's "The Power of Love".
And a giant KL on the field at halftime.  It was fun to watch the festivities, having a senior and a freshman (not to mention working at an elementary school that feeds into the high school) I kind of know many of the kids.  Kentlake won their homecoming game by a wide margin, but they were playing my old high school, so I would have won either way.

Now lets go back in time a day.  Lillie spent the week at 6th grade camp.  Camp Waskowitz to be exact.  Yes, that's the same camp that Hansen, Preston, and Maren all attended!  John used to bring his classes there too!  Lillie took a ton of pictures, but I couldn't get them to download just yet.
But here she is Thursday when I picked her up from camp.  While she had a great time, I think she was very happy to be home!
All the kids get to make a cool little wooden necklace.  Lillie's is very nice indeed.
What is this?  This crazy design is one of the t-shirts that the kids bought me for my birthday!  what could be better than Spongebob and Patrick riding a cat into space?  Yeah, I'm not really sure.

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Yes, cats can shake their heads.

Good evening, it is Tuesday.

As you know, we have two cats.  Joe and Ranger.  They are allowed outside anytime they want, but they seem to like it indoors the best.  Can't really blame them, indoors is nice.  There are also a couple of cats (Simba and Cocoa) that belong to our neighbor that are outdoor cats.  I don't even know if they are actually allowed in their house.  And as it turns out, Preston is their favorite.  Really.  Whenever Preston gets home from anywhere they run over to the van to say "hi".  Sometimes Preston takes the time to say "hi" back.
I snapped this Picture today when Preston got home from school.  His cat friends are already there.  The other day I took the van out to put gas in it, and when I got home, these cats ran right up to the door and waited for me to get out of the van...well, they were waiting for Preston weren't they?  Yes they were, when they saw it was me they just shook their heads in disappointment.  They waited for a minute to see if somehow I would change into Preston, but finally they just left.  Ouch!

See you tomorrow.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

It breaks to the left.

Good evening, it is Sunday.

Yesterday I got to play golf at High Cedars Golf Course.  I'm not joking when I tell you that I have not golfed this course since 1991!  That's right, since I was in college.  But this course is no stranger to me, I probably golfed this course one hundred times with my dad back when I was in high school.  Other than some new tee boxes, the course was just the same!  Well, I'd never have found the course if I wasn't following friends as there are tons of housing neighborhoods, traffic lights, a new clubhouse, and even a soccer golf course right there now.  I even ran into a couple of old faces from "back in the day".  Crazy.  Here are a couple of pictures that look no different than if snapped 30 years ago:
This is the leaning Cedar on hole 9.  Thirty years ago this was hole 18, but they flipped the nines when they built the new clubhouse.
Now add me to the photo.
And a classic tricky High Cedars putt.  I played great, even felt like I knew the course like the back of my hand even though I hadn't played it in like 23 years.  Cool huh?
Yeah, we're not talking golf any longer.  Thursday we all got our flu shots!  Yay!  We actually did this at the boy's high school after school during a flu shot clinic.
Unlike the flu shot clinic where we all successfully received our shots, we didn't have as much luck giving blood this morning.  In fact, while two of us tried to give blood this morning, this van ended up with no blood from us.  One of us was turned away because lack of breakfast, the other had too high pulse.  Really?  Our friend was turned away because she was wearing a sweater.  Fun looking bus though.
Cross Country is in full swing now.  I volunteered at the last meet to guide the runners around a sharp corner out behind the track.  I enjoyed this job.  Believe it or not I'm buying myself a treadmill for my birthday to get myself back into running.  I'm a long way from any half marathons, but apparently my sister isn't.  Here is a link to her fund raising page for the LiveStrong half marathon she is running in come February: If I was in better shape, I'd almost consider flying down and running it too.  Maybe some day.
How about this for a last picture for today's blog?  Preston has been spending tons of time playing the piano and the guitar.  While our piano is a great family heirloom, it may not sound quite as good as a modern piano or even an electric grand.  I was asking Preston if he remembered his piano recitals in downtown Seattle Sherman Clay building when he was little (the store is now closed I believe).  He says he really doesn't remember.  I can tell you he was excellent back then too!  And here is proof that he has played on a $65,000.00 piano!  

See you tomorrow.

Thursday, October 02, 2014

A cheeky view of Paris.

Good afternoon, it is Thursday.

Yesterday John, Carol, and Carol's sister Sue got back from a week + in Paris.  As in Paris France.  While I haven't talked them about their trip, I did receive several photos texted to me via Stef from Sue.  The captions on the pictures may or may not have been made up by me.  Glad Sue had the fancy phone as it was fun to see these pics in real time:
Just getting the lay of the land.  Hey look, a scooter with a strange license plate!
Starting to figure this Paris place out.  Little itty bitty tables, no room for fries.
We actually found a Washingtonian to take our picture!  Cheese!
Wow, my feet are so sore from all this walking!
Uh...  I swear this was John's idea.  YOLO.
When in Rome.  Er... raise a glass to Paris.
O.K., here is actual proof that we were not just vacationing in the University District.  Hey Maren, check out this shopping bag, it has your initials!  Now lets get back home...

I hope to see some more photos to fill in the gaps of this photo essay.  I'm sure I will get to very soon.

See you tomorrow.