Monthly Archives: May 2006

My First Baseball Game

The stadium was surprisingly empty considering we were only 20 minutes early. There was a light rain cascading down and we could see the colorful tops of a few umbrellas scattered here and there. The rain wasn’t really enough to warrant an umbrella, not for a true Oregonian anyway. We were in a suite, or a box, however you care to call them, they are essentially the same thing. The food was delicious, and there was a lot of it. We ate, talked and laughed waiting for the game to begin. It was supposed to start at five minutes after seven. The hour sailed by and before anyof us realized it, it was 5 to eight and still no game. Finally they came out and began to sweep the water off the base covers and prepare things for the game. The National Anthem was sung, and the game began.

We made it through 3 batters, two outs, one good hit, and one man on second. The fourth batter was up to bat when the heavens opened and it began to rain in earnest. We watched as the baseball teams ran for cover, the bases were hurriedly covered, and dozens of colors exploded throughout the stadium as umbrellas popped open. We waited for another hour, but the game was cancelled. We had been rained out.

It is rather funny. There has been a lot of talk about wanting to have a professional baseball team in Portland . . . hmmm.

So, my first baseball team was a huge exciting success! 🙂 lol. I mean, the workers (who covered and uncovered the bases and such, don’t know what they are rightfully called) and the mascott provided great entertainment running from base to base slip’n’slidin’ across the large plastic covers. It was quite a hoot. I think the National Anthem lasted longer than the game though. heh. 🙂


Filed under Sports


Weekly Anamnesis #24

(the ‘he’ in the story is an acquaintance, no more, no less)

He was an amazing musician. I first made his acquaintance when I was taking French horn lessons from his uncle in highschool. He accompanied my Solo Ensemble piece, it was not an easy piece.Two years later I met him again, this time as a piano teacher. I was in need of piano lessons during my summer break from college. I learned a lot that summer, more than I had with any other teacher.

I didn’t see him again until after I was married and had Elizabeth and Dorothy. I was feeling stagnant and in need of piano lessons. Something to inspire me to practice, and a need to feel that I was working to improve myself in something other than mommyhood. Not that I didn’t love being a mom, I loved it thoroughly (and still do) but sometimes you just need that something extra for yourself. I began to take lessons again. I learned Rachmaninoff, Chopin, Maleguena, Dvorak, and Beethoven, just to name a few. I soaked up anything I could glean from his teaching and I loved the challenge, learning, and progression.

A few years ago it was time to take a break, a need for cutting back on the budget among other things. I have kept up my playing much better this time, and I have not become stagnant.

But he has, due to some poor decisions in his personal life. He sits stagnant in jail.


Filed under Anamnesis, Writing

Red, White, & Blue

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I was trying desprately to decide what to use for my photo this week. Many ideas came to me, but they all lacked that creative flare and flavor. Tonight my husband and I were on our way home from our date and it hit me. As we exited the store, where we were getting small bills for our baby-sitter I was shown the light! There, illuminating in glorious neon lightening, touting its brilliant red, white, and blue for all the world to see, it stood, majestic, regal . . .ok. Maybe not. But it gave me an idea anyway and that is why we went back into the store and I bought a pepsi, which I honestly detest and never drink and will sit for someone in the next generation to drink, heh, and photographed it. 🙂


Filed under Photography

Random Friday

I don’t know if I have written about this yet, but I am just so excited that I have to brag a bit. Jacob is WALKING!!! WOOT! I am so stoked! He is still rather unsteady and unsure of himself but he will walk out into the middle of the family room floor now – a good 10+ steps. This is such a big deal because, as you know from previous posts, his doctors have been concerned about development. So we get to check off another milestone met in the “alotted time period.” If I was still my cute young skinny self I would leap in the air and do one of my famous heel clicks! Yes, I can’t walk down a street without falling on my face for no reason, but I can click my heels together in mid air. It’s a cruel, cruel world.


I get to start walking again next week! After having given myself a mandatory week off (issued by my hubby and parents) I am excited by the prospect of hitting the streets come Monday. Oh, and my feet are feeling much better, thank you. 🙂

My jeans are getting threadbare and I am at risk of throughouly embarrassing myself in public ( I know I should be used to it by now, heh) and scaring a great many people. heh 🙂 So I got myself a new pare of jeans today. Usually I find jeans are like shoes. You have to were them a while and break them in before they get comfy. These are the comfiest jeans I have worn by far! A comfy pair of jeans to wear in life are mandatory to happiness. 🙂


I get to go to my first EVER baseball game tonight! Paul got free tickets to a local game at PGE park in Portland from work. I am very excited, we even get free food! (I think that it the best part, heh) The only time we ever make to sports events is when we end up with free tickets. So all you baseball fans please don’t shoot me . . . it always looks rather boring on TV, I hope it is more exciting in person. heh 🙂 It’ll be fun, none-the-less. 🙂


My girls were decorating sugar cookies yesterday. I slipped out of the room for a few minutes. BIG mistake. I had given each girl 3 cookies (just Dot and Lizard, Emmy had done hers that morning with her playgroup) and the supplies to do their thing. When I walked into the kitchen I was greeted with empty bottles of sprinkles and sugar crystals! Their cookies looked like “The Big Rock Candy Mountain!” Cute, but now I have to buy new sprinkles . . .


Filed under Children, Dot, Em, Heart, Jacob, Lizy, Parenting

of Robin Hood and the Monkey Tree

I picked up a long straight stick; it was just shorter than my shoulder and about ½ to ¾ inches round. It wasn’t yew, but it would work just the same. I pulled out my pocketknife and proceeded to whittle off the bark and the knotholes. Finally notching both ends of the stick, I drew out my piece of string and firmly wound and fastened it to one end. Then pulling the string taught I bent the wood, winding and fastening the string to the opposite end of the stick. I tested it. It didn’t quite twang, but it was pretty good for such a quick job. I scavangered for some small sticks and then whittled them too, forming a point at the end of each one.

I ran inside and scrounged for a green shirt, threw it on atop of the others and charged outside, hollering something about important, be right back, before my mother could give me a list of chores to complete. I went down the hill to the barn where my brothers were waiting, with their green shirts on. “Ready?” they asked and I gave a nod of my head.

“Then off to Sherwood!” they shouted and we began to tramp past the barn and across the pastures to our little wood. Had we been toting our swords and the shields of King Arthur’s nights we would have battled the dragon at the edge of the forest. On tree rose far higher than the rest and the top of it was curled and bent into the shape of a dragon. It was appropriately named the dragon tree and on some nights, when it was silhouetted against the red sky as the sunset, it would almost come alive. But that was not our destination this day. We were headed into the heart of the wood to a tree we had dubbed the “Monkey Tree.”

It was twisted and gnarled and charred near the top, having been struck by lightning some time in the past. It was the perfect tree for play and climbing with branches leading out in all different directions and sloping up or down. Someone had made a tree house at one point, for there was a ladder nailed to the tree. Dad had made that the stopping point. We couldn’t climb higher than the bottom slat of the ladder. We understood and didn’t mind, we still had most of the tree to swing from and climb and eat apples in its recesses.

We hushed our riotous laughter as we neared Sherwood and swung our bows from off our backs. We each knocked an arrow into place. Snap! I whirled around searching for the unseen enemy. Kimball whispered what we all knew, “Sherwood has been discovered! There is a spy among us!” Our arrows flew sure and true striking the enemy and taking many of them down. But there were too many and we found ourselves pressed back to back against the tree. “Climb! We’ve got to climb, it’s our only escape!”

We frantically began to make our way up the tree until we were well above their heads, showering arrows down upon them. We were standing on a branch. Kimball pointed to our only escape route, a branch just a ways above and in front of us. My eyes alight with fire I nodded to show I understood. I slung my bow on my back and we prepared to jump. “One! Two! THREE!” We leapt across the gap and grabbed hold of the branch, soldiers shouting below us warning of our escape. We swung once, twice . . .CRACK! The sickening sound filled our ears as we fell through time and space until we crashed to the forest floor. Kimball landing upon my head, or at least something of his colliding with my head. The world exploded into a myriad of color. Groaning I tried to sit up. “J, you dead?” I heard him mumble as Paul came running up to us laughing.

“If I’m not dead yet, I will be soon. We’re surrounded and my bow is broken.” I held up my pitiful bow the two ends hanging limply from the once taught string. My brothers shook their heads and laughed as we staggered back to the house.

Some years later our adventures were ended permanently when the tree was struck again by lightening and it went down in a blaze, scorching a good portion of our little wood along with it. Sometimes I yearn to see the places we played and imagined as children, but then I am afraid I would find it so altered by time and nature that I would only see the ghosts of memories racing through the trees.


Filed under Farm Stories, Goofs, Personal History, Writing

Foot Massage Anyone? (not for you silly, me!) heh. :)

We awoke to a slightly overcast day, this was good, and immediately were thrown into the rush of getting things ready. We got kids dressed and flung in the car along with sunscreen, water, our cart, and a camera. It took us longer (as it usually does) to get ready than we thought it would so the kids munched on dry cheerios in the car for their breakfast on our way to downtown Portland. We had made it to Sherwood (looking at the clock thinking, “I hope we’re not late!”) and were just passing by Target when Jacob started gagging and choking. We weren’t to worried, this is rather common for him. I think it might have something to do with being intubated for such a long period of time, there might be scarring, or his esophogus might just get irrated more easily than others. I think I’ll check with our ped. about it next month though just to be sure. Anyway, he finally ended up throwing up all over his shirt and Paul carreened into the Target parking lot so we could get him taken care of.

Paul held up a pair of overalls,”We have these, but no shirt.”
“Well, you run and buy one, I’ll clean him up!” We had momentarily forgotten we were sitting in a Target parking lot and Paul charged in. A mini miracle that we hadn’t gone any further before this happened, heh. 🙂

Soon we were on the road again and our, “I hope we’re not late” turned into a “I hope we’re not too late.” We were pleased to find parking immediately when we arrived and only at $3 for the day. It was even 3 blocks from the starting point of the Heart Walk. We made it with time to spare and Jacob was given his red survivor hat and the girls received red beads and we started off.

We were able to meet up with a number of members of our online support group, many of which we had never met in person, and it was such a fun experiece getting to know each other and seeing how all the heart kids were doing. Some of which had had surgeries quite recently and they were all looking so good. The walk couldn’t have gone better. We did the whole 5k (3 miles) and the kids all walked at least 2 miles of it with out riding in the cart. We got to walk over two of the large Portland bridges which the kids thought was awesome and along the river on both sides. It was a great distraction for them with all the exciting things to see. It was an incredible experience and we were able to raise $200 for the American Heart Foundation, which uses the money for heart research. They raised a total of $169,851 from this walk. We are grateful for those who donated, and even more for the support we recieved from all of you. You guys are all great, and we can’t wait until next year! 🙂

Well, to say that our day ended there would be quite foolish, for we were home by 12:00 and at 3:30 we were trying frantically to prepare ourselves, and kids, for our family portrait session. My good friend is a fabulous photgrapher and we were getting our family portrait done. We got everyone bathed, dressed and ready and had a hoot doing our pictures at a local scenic park. We finished with that at 7:00 and picked up our babysitter and dropped everyone at home and at 7:40 Paul and I were headed to the church dance.

We love to dance, and it was fun. I was amazed at how much energy and stamina I seemed to have, I guess all that walking I’ve been doing is really paying off. 🙂 I have a hard time dancing in shoes, so I went barefoot and we danced the night away, (swinging and polkaing our little hearts out)well until 10:00 anyway. 🙂

Well, I am paying for it this morning. I woke up and could barely walk. See, silly little me didn’t think about the fact that my arches are falling (my dad is flatfooted so it is a charming gift from him, heh). I have been working on trying to wear shoes or sandals with good arch support in them all the time. Really tough for a barefoot country girl. None of my dress shoes have good arch support so I just went barefoot. Oops! So now I’m walking like a cripled 100 year-old lady. heh 🙂 I figure they’ll be feeling better soon, but I have sure learned my lesson. 🙂

The day was a success, and it made us feel even better knowing that all of you were rooting for us on our Heart WalK! 🙂


Filed under Children, Heart, Jacob, Love and Marriage


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(I’m posting this now because I’ll be a-walkin come mornin’) 🙂


Filed under Children, Dot, Em, Lizy, Photography

While I Was Walking

I was out storming the streets yesterday morning with my little red and yellow cart carrying Emmy and J-kabob, waving happily to passerbies and bouncing to the beat of my MP3 player strapped to my arm. (you would laugh if I told you what I walk to, heh) Thursdays Emmy has play group and I usually end up dropping her off while on my walk. Yesterday was no different, I deposited her safely at her destination but, as I began to walk away, something caught my eye.

It wasn’t really all that peculiar, just something that I don’t notice every day. The grass was rather tall, not too tall, just barely reaching that point of needing to haul out the lawn mower. Laying in the grass was gray cat, and upon observation I realized that this was not a leisurely nap in the shade. In fact, the cat was crouched down, ears pointed and alert, motionless. I could almost see its muscles tensed and ready for the pounce. “What is it eyeballing so readily,” I wondered, and followed its gaze to the nearby tree.

There was a squirrel climbing down the tree; very hesitantly. It knew the cat was watching; it knew it was being hunted. He cautiosly reached the ground and for a moment remained motionless, tail high in the air. Flick, Flick. Flick Flick. He whipped his tail forward over his head, eyes on the cat. He wanted to see what Mr. Cat would do. Would he pounce? Cats are very patient creatures and the cat simply remained, watching all the while. With great caution the squirel ventured out away from the tree, but never far enough that he wouldn’t be able to zip up to safety. He was only on the ground for a minute before he scurried back up the tree onto a branch. It was quite clear Mr. Cat was making him nervous. He turned on the branch and looked at the cat. If it were possible to read the expressions of a squirrel’s face I am sure it would be furrowed in thought, “How can I get rid of this beast?”

Then I witnessed the strangest thing I have ever seen a squirrel do. It began to bark. I’m not kidding, the squirrel was barking at the cat! It was similar to a very small dog and was not very loud, but it was actually barking! I knew that squirrels chirped, but I never heard of a barking squirrel before. I knew exactly what that squirrel must have been thinking, “hey, I bet if I bark like a dog I can scare that cat off!” It was too funny, a Looney Toon cartoon come to life.

I’ll never know if the cat gave up or if the squirrel met a sorrowful demise, I had to continue on my walk . . .


Filed under Humor, Nature

Heart Walk Tomorrow!

We are gearing up for the American Heart Association Heart Walk tomorrow in honor of Jacob. We are all really excited to get out there and strut our stuff, ok, well . . . excited to join in and walk anyway, heh. We are hoping to meet up with a number of heart families that belong to the support group to which we belong. We can walk either 1K or 5K and I am trying to decide if the kiddos would be up to the 5K challenge, because that is what I would really like to do. It is a great feeling to feel like you have a contribution to make in the world, that you can wrought a change, or support and help someone else. 🙂

Team Jacob’s Heart Walk (May 20th) Donation Page

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Filed under CHD, Heart, TGA

“Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway”

I attended my little writing group last night and the topic of the evening was Fear. Yup, Fear with a capitol “F”. Fear of writing, fear of spiders, fear of anything. Though of course being a writing class it was mainly focused around the penmenship fear. We have an assignment, and I will do it eventually but in pursuing the assignment, my mind has been consumed with Fear. Not being afraid mind you, thinking about fear. My fears, their fears, just different kinds of fear.

I have come to the realization that the reason why I like to blog so much is that I get to hide behind my computer. I can’t see you, you can’t see me. I don’t have to face you after something I have written is read and watch the shuffle of toes while you try to find a way to tactfully tell me it was terrible and try to hide my dissapointment. Or I don’t have to try to hide my pleasure and surprise if you genuinely love it and think it is the best thing ever since sliced strawberry pie, because I wouldn’t want to seem arrogant or egotistical. My heart still pounds though every time I hit that “publish post” button and I silently curse myself for subjecting my blog friends to further torture, and it pounds when I read the comments, no matter if it is loved or hated. But if I had to be in the same room as you read it or I read it to you my heart would likely beat itself out of my body in a frenzy waiting for the starving wolves to pounce.

Logically I know that you, my friends, and my family are not starving wolves. But convincing my heart of that is an entirely different matter. I still don’t know if I will hit the publish button on this post or not. Because this would be displaying not just to strangers how I quake in the recesses of my mind, but to my acquaintances and friends. I don’t know why it is so hard to showcase one’s fears and imperfections. Maybe it is a fear of falling from grace. Launching one’s self off a pedestal with such fervor it leaves a crator in the floor below. That fear is tangible, real, I can almost taste it. That feeling of one wrong move and the world could crash around me in a pile of rubble up to my ears. I know it(most likely) won’t happen, but the fear (of the possiblilty) is there.

But, nothing is ever learned and accomplished unless you push that button, read that poem, write that book. So, I adopt the quote shared with us last night:

“Feel the fear and do it anyway.” – Susan Jeffers, PhD


Filed under Opinion, Philosophy, Writing