Monthly Archives: March 2010

san jose

**WARNING: THIS IS A LONG (and i mean REALLY LONG) post it’s heavy on words AND heavy on photos**


i know i’ve been MIA for awhile here. it started with all the colds and vomiting and ear infections and sinus infections….. and most recently, dave and i had the opportunity to spend 5 glorious days and 4 nights away. (nana flew in from Philly to love on her grandkids for a few weeks, including during our absence!). granted, it was a business trip for Dave, but it was all about pleasure for me! we were in san jose, california (well, our hotel was technically in milpitas) and the weather was AMAZINGLY WONDERFUL while we were there (70s and mostly sunny)!


we flew out of seattle on thursday evening (there was a large group of us) and two hours later, we landed in san jose. we were at the hotel a short time later and then right down to the bistro for a late dinner. 



while dave was in various sessions for Bibletech 2010 (hosted by Logos Bible Software, his employer), i got to spend time with three other wives (Susan, Julie and Erin) exploring the nearby attractions. we did a LOT on friday….

SANTA CRUZ: natural bridges; drove along the coast; visited the Surfer Museum Lighthouse (though the museum was closed there seemed to be a surfing competition happening); the Municipal Wharf (where we ate a tasty lunch, squealed about "pressed penny" machines and found a candy shoppe); the Boardwalk (everything was closed – only open weekends right now)


(i’m not sure why, but i fell in LOVE with that bench – i have about 8 photos of it from different angles and distances)


(we oogled the rides on the boardwalk… me, espeically, since i’m not allowed to ride any of them since i’m pregnant!)

SOQUEL: antique shopping (where we found AWESOME vintage cameras – i bought two for dave! and some fun vintage jewelry- a piece for me and a piece for my mom)


CAPITOLA VILLAGE: walked around enjoying our ice cream (three of us chose chocolate peanut butter cup – mmmmm!); went onto the beach (didn’t put our feet in the cold water) and enjoyed the atmosphere
(group photo: Susan, Erin, Me and Julie – and that shot of me is courtesy of Julie)
DROVE through downtown Santa Cruz (seemed like a fun place to be – i wouldn’t have minded eating dinner somewhere there)
Enjoyed an Italian Restaurant for dinner in another part of Santa Cruz
Returned to our hotel after 10 p.m. (later than the guys’ day of sessions, dinner and demos!)
the day was filled with lots of talking, laughing, relating, photography, stories, understanding… it was wonderful. i’d only known susan before this adventure, but now i feel like i have two more amazing new friends (julie and erin)!
Saturday was more low-key. we enjoyed "breakfast" at Starbucks, found a post office so Erin could mail postcards home to her kids) and then we made our way into San Jose so we (okay, mostly so I) could shop at a scrapbook store. we were there for a LONG time (thank you SO MUCH for your patience, Susan, Julie & Erin!) b/c i did some serious shopping. i bought 90 sheets of patterned paper, 2 sheets of cardstock, 3 overlays and 1 sheet of wood. add in some stickers, letters, ribbon, mini books and other things…. yeah it was a little crazy. but fun. lots of fun. and i had PLANNED for this shopping expedition. after lunch at a nearby diner (not as tasty as i had hoped, though it was still good), we decided to skip our other ideas for the day and head back to the hotel to enjoy time relaxing by the pool. it was in the mid 70s and it was very, very sunny. 
(i’m not telling how much i spent, but that was my receipt at the scrapbook store. it was very, very long. and i already shared how much paper i bought. and that other shot is of a pool umbrella and some palm tree tops from my lounge chair at the beach.) 
the boys were finished with their conference by 5 or 6pm. dave and i headed to In-N-Out with bradley and susan. it was my first experience with In-N-Out (and many of you know that i almost NEVER eat burgers – like less than 1 a year)! after that, we headed to Santana Row to wander the streets and we ended up at Rosie McCaan’s Irish Pub for drinks (Sprite for me!) and dessert. Jason & Erin joined us at the Pub, too. 
on Sunday we went to the Winchester Mystery House with bradley & susan before a quick lunch at In-N-Out and then it was time for bradley & susan to leave. they left us their rental car and we drove out to visit the massive (and i do mean MASSIVE) Google-plex (Google’s main offices in Mountain View) and then to Cupertino to see Apple’s main offices (you remember that i’m married to a computer/tech geek, right?!). unsure what else to do, we headed to Santa Cruz (dave had never been there) to see the natural bridges, enjoy the boardwalk and head back to San Jose. we stumbled on a Macaroni Grill so enjoyed a tasty dinner there and then we turned in early. 


(that’s dave falling out of the "door to nowhere" from inside the house!)


(dave was SO EXCITED when we found the Google Android – that green guy!



(dave at the boardwalk eating his first ever funnel cake and jason&erin on one of the rides – we saw them in passing a few times while we were there!)


we woke up on monday morning (i had taken sleeping pills and FINALLY got a good night’s sleep – 10 hours) not sure how to spend our final few hours in california. we didn’t have enough time to go back to santa cruz or to go to san francisco or anything like that. after some desperate attempts to find something "nearby" to do, we agreed to take it easy (slow), find a good place for brunch and relax at a park before heading to the airport. we couldn’t find a good park (until it was too late to enjoy it) so we drove to find a few other computer-geek places and then we drove around the campus of stanford before heading to the airport. 



if you’ve made it this far, THANK YOU and CONGRATULATIONS! you have amazing patience and i’m impressed! as you can imagine, i have lots more photos. and lots more stories. we’ll see if any of them make it here!


one final note: some of you know about Harlan the Marlin. He belongs to my friend Julie (not the Julie who was on this trip). I volunteered to take Harlan to San Jose so he could have an adventure. However, Harlan is also very mischevious and likes to get into hijinks and shenanigans. So I had my hands full. I’ll have a whole ‘nother post about Harlan’s adventures with us in San Jose and Santa Cruz!


My dear friend, Elizabeth, is in Bellevue (outside of Seattle) for a convention this weekend. She lives in Montana. You’ve seen her photo(s) on here before. Yesterday, I had the privilege of driving south to pick her up and be her tour guide/entertainment for a few hours. We had so much fun and we could not have asked for better weather!


E’s been to Seattle before, so I wasn’t sure what she had and hadn’t done… and we’re both scrapbookers, so I knew we could visit some paper stores in the area, too. But it turned out that with all her trips and visits out here, she’d NEVER BEEN to Pike Place Market! Say "wha?!"


So our first stop was Pike Place Market. We enjoyed the beautiful colors of the flowers, the fruits and the veggies. Then we watched them throw some fish and we visited with Rachel, the bronze pig. We enjoyed lunch overlooking the water (she had fish & chips and I had clam chowder in a sourdough bread bowl). And then we headed to Starbucks for a tasty after-lunch treat (by the way, did you know they brought back the MOLASSES COOKIES? those are my favorite… SO YUMMY!!!)


After thoroughly enjoying ourselves at PPM, we drove north to the Alderwood Mall so she could check out this store called Daiso (we  used to have one in Bellingham – most items are $1.50 and it’s a Japanese store). She purchased a slew of items for her Bento addiction (i’ll tell you more about that later) and she convinced me to buy some stuff, too!


And then it was over. Our glorious, child-free, have-fun, play date was over. Far too quickly. But I had a great time and it was worth the drive. Every minute of it!


Here are some photos of our adventure:



we each bought some flowers (i bought mine for myself)…. for $5 for a beautiful bouquet, how could i possibly resist? and i’m wishing i’d purchased some of those strawberries… they would taste SO YUMMY right now.


speaking of right now, i’ve got to go. i’m heading south to shop with my sister-in-law Taryn for a few hours. we’ve been trying to get together (during the week) since January. we finally gave up and today is the day!

two more

i was so inspired by the page i made yesterday that i made two more today using lots and lots and LOTS more metals from my stash:


that m&ms layout of davey utilized 5 metal frames, 1 metal tab, 2 metal dog tags and 12 brads. the frames and dog tags have been in my stash for years…. at least 4 or 5 years. seriously. and i have some more to try to use up, as well!


next up, another attempt to use up some more of my stash of eyelets and brads:


i can’t remember the exact number, but i think i used around 180 eyelets and brads on this page. i’m pleased at the VERY HEALTHY chunk of brads and eyelets that are no longer in my stash. but i still have too many eyelets and i don’t think i can handle another really long session of setting those eyelets and brads, so i think those metals will have to "hang out" a little while longer.


Friday’s prompt involved patterned paper scraps. i sat down this evening (after the kids’ bedtime) to work on a layout for that prompt. made a whole layout and HATED IT! i cut off the section using the scraps and adhered the remainder of the layout to a new sheet of patterned paper and REALLY LIKED the outcome. so i guess it’s back to square one for me on the patterned paper scraps challenge!  :)


and now for an update on the family: i took davey to the doctor’s office on wednesday b/c he woke up with a fever (103.0). just a virus that would likely take 7-10 days to clear out of his system. his lungs, belly, ears and bowels were clear. so wednesday was a tough day for him – he was quiet and had a fever all day. he ate nothing (asked to eat nothing) and drank about 1/2 can of ginger ale (at the most) over the course of the day. he was doing much better on thursday. but again on friday he had low0grade fevers off and on all day. he was fine yesterday (saturday) and then came down with another low fever around 4 today (after his nap). 


we skipped church today (to keep davey out of the nursery) and now i’m glad we did. we’ll skip play group tomorrow. we’ve skipped more things in the past 2 months than in the past YEAR… no exaggeration! nana arrives on wednesday, so i’ll get to go to Bible study on Thursday and the kids can stay at home with her. i’m afraid nana may be housebound for most of her 2-week visit with sick kids (or kids who are working to rebuild their immune systems!) but at least she’ll get lots of time with her grandkids!


despite having to miss play group tomorrow, it should be a glorious day. why? because adria is coming over. i’m hiring her to clean the fish/kids’ bathroom… JUST IN TIME for nana’s visit. i still feel awful that i forgot to clean the bathroom for her on her last visit. and i HATE cleaning the tub/shower. so adria’s going to do a good deep cleaning for me. and after that tiny bathroom, she’s going to tackle some of my kitchen stuff for me. things i don’t do like: cleaning the vent above the microwave; scrubbing the front of the dishwasher, fridge and oven; and all kinds of other things i have on my "list." 


so getting some things CLEAN…. REALLY CLEAN…. makes me happy. even happier since i don’t have to do it myself!  :)   and in case you’re concerned that i’m getting lazy, i did a lot of cleaning this weekend. i dusted the ENTIRE upstairs and all but the office downstairs. i vacuumed the ENTIRE house (again, not including the home office). and i did 4 complete loads of laundry (it’s all even PUT AWAY). and the dishwasher was run 4 times. and i SCRUBBED our shower walls (it was pretty nasty) and floor. and i cleaned one more set of mini blinds (the never-ending process). AND i cleaned my crafting space (you have room for your suitcase, mom!). so i’ve been busy. and i have been cleaning. but i’m smart enough to realize i just can’t do it all myself. and i’m willing (and thankfully, able) to hire someone to help me. so in advance, THANK YOU to adria!


and yes, i DO have some newer photos of the kids…. i’ll have to share them this coming week (‘cuz they’re on the desktop and i’m typing on the laptop).

an online class

many of you know that i LOVE to scrapbook. yep. love it. and don’t do it quite enough most weeks. many of you also know that i have a HUGE stash of goodies with which to play. so i signed up recently to taken an on-line class called Something for Almost Nothing. it was only $15 and the PURPOSE of the class is to USE all those things i have stored away. i’m hoping to actually do several layouts or projects based on each prompt (we get three prompts a week – M, W and F).


thus far, i’ve only been able to play around based on Wednesdays prompt (class started on W this week). we were challenged to pull anything METAL out of our stash. personally, i LOVE metals on my sb pages. i use them all the time, but i definitely have some just "sitting" around and not being loved. so here’s my layout, using 140 eyelets and brads:

it took FOREVER, but i LOVE the end result. and, while i used up a number of specialty brads, i still have an ABUNDANCE of these things in my stash… so i think i’ll be doing a page like this for davey, too!


friday’s prompt challenged us to use paper scraps to make a border on our page. frankly, i’m still a bit motivated and inspired by metals… so we’ll see what happens!

it’s a….

yep… it’s a baby. a tiny baby with a profile that matches davey and samantha’s. 


but that’s not what you want to know, right? well, how about this?

two legs and two feet (only one pictured) with five toes on each foot.


or this?

two arms with two hands and five fingers on each?


no? that’s not what you wanted to know? well, to protect the FUTURE privacy of Baby O, i’ll just tell you, rather than share photos….


it’s a GIRL. we’re having a girl. and while "Baby Olive" isn’t necessarily her in utero name we’re sticking with, it works for now (‘cuz when we first realized we were pregnant, the baby was about the size of an olive, according to the baby books). so Davey and Samantha will have a baby sister in 16-21 short weeks!


many of you know that i was really hoping for a boy. but on the way to the appointment, i was waiting at a red light and i realized….. i would be happy with a boy OR a girl. no matter what the tech said, "boy" or "girl," i’d be happy. and content. and ready to love this baby. and within 2 minutes of starting the ultrasound, there were those 3 little lines. the 3 lines that prove it’s a girl. and not a boy. 


a girl. we’re having another girl. 


so on tuesday, i couldn’t possibly stay in the house all day for one more day. so i loaded the kids into the car (they still weren’t feeling well and davey still had a fever) but i had to get out. so we ran a few errands (using a double stroller, no shopping carts) and it felt good (for me). we even made it to Ross Dress for Less where i purchased a few casual maternity shirts. i LOVE new clothing, even when they’re for fat bellies!  :)


it was a short trip into bellingham b/c i had an "appointment" at home at 11:30. see, a few weeks ago, i put out a call on facebook for the name of a local ORGANIZATION consultant. i was ready to admit that my kitchen and home office needed help. LOTS of help. see, many of you know this is WEIRD. many of you know me well enough to know that i am pretty darn good at organizing. i LOVE it. and to some people, i’m an organizing guru myself. but i needed help. some fresh eyes, if you will. so one of my former high school students (now married and living back in lynden) offered to help.


we spent about 3 hours in the kitchen (we have to set another date for the home office!) making a few minor changes that should have a HUGE impact. the first, which i’m VERY EXCITED to share, is that for the first time in my LIFE, i have a BREAD DRAWER! see: 

a drawer devoted to bread and bagels and english muffins and even some cookies! i’m SO excited about this! and i acknowledge it’s super-special in our current kitchen b/c we only have 7 drawers. two of which are skinny and one of which is very, VERY shallow (intended for knives). 


next, janelle corralled my spices. all of them. we had them stored in THREE places: a spice rack, a drawer and on a lazy susan. it was a mess. i knew it. dave knew it. and we knew it wasn’t working. but we had no other suggestions. so janelle filled up our spice rack. extra/overflow containers got moved to a basket in the pantry. and all other spices (we have a LOT) got moved here:

inside a cabinet. just above the other spices in the counter rack. genius, i know. SO nice!


so here’s my counter now (i know, i should’ve taken a before photo, but i didn’t): 

see that EMPTY space between the wooden bowl (containing the bananas, red potatoes, a shallot, and usually some onions) and the spice rack in the corner? that NOW EMPTY space used to be FILLED with all those breads you saw in the drawer. they were stacked on each other. falling over. and spilled off the front of the counter onto the floor. what a mess. and it’s no longer a mess!


we made a few other minor changes… sorting and reorganizing mugs, tupperware containers, sippy cups, etc. i feel like i have RECLAIMED my kitchen… and i’m LOVING it!



19+ weeks

dave took this photo on sunday. i looked AWFUL in it, so i cropped out my face. trust me. it was pretty bad. but it’s my first belly shot during this pregnancy… at almost the half-way point! hopefully i’ll be better about taking photos from now until the end of this pregnancy!


on tuesday (3/2/10), i hit the 20-week marker. my ultrasound is scheduled for monday the 8th… and yes, we DO plan to find out if we’re having a boy or a girl. will we tell you? now that’s another story all-together!  ;)

and so it goes

so we didn’t go up to the snow on saturday b/c it was raining on the mountain. yuck. and we FINALLY returned to church as a family on sunday (first time in over 2 weeks). and i was all geared-up for this week to get back to normal, including play group, working, running errands, etc….. and davey woke up with a fever on monday. and his cough isn’t getting better. and so it goes. i believe we’re on week 8 of various ailments in this house. spring can’t come soon enough for me.


but in the meantime, we have had lots of laughs and fun around this house. the kids love to empty out the space under the TV and components in the bonus room and sit in there. it’s like their own little clubhouse:


(side note: we needed a "change" last week, so i re-arranged some toys in the bonus room. my apologies because i have no pictures to share. but let’s just say it’s been a good change. even dave likes it!!!)


and to continue with photos of FUN, tonight, they got a horsey-ride from daddy:

that’s almost 60 pounds on dave’s back (each child is at least 28 pounds)!


so they might be a bit sick, but they are SO. DARN. CUTE! sam’s current favorite thing to do is to climb on davey. sit on davey. hit davey. take his things and make him chase her. it’s funny and naughty all at the same time. what a silly (and naughty) little girl!