Monday, November 30, 2009

5 down 48 to go

I made myself a snack of broccoli and some hummus to enjoy after making the boys lunches and then cleaning up after the destruction. They always want whatever your eating but I thought this time they would leave me be, having just been fed and my eating broccoli. I was wrong. They swarmed me. i gave them each a "tree" and thought they would taste it and lose interest but they kept coming back for more. This goes to show what we all know, that kids will eat what you eat. If you eat healthy, they will too. It is simple and a tad cliche but it really hit my this afternoon. I have been trying to eat better and get bit more healthy all over. Motivation has come from pictures, beautiful, and culture in this city that values active healthy lifestyles, but this afternoon watching the boys chow down on stem after stem of broccoli gave me another big one. The funny thing is that growing up I didn't like broccoli and would hide it in the compartments of our expandable table. We would find it every two years when we would move again. I didn't want the boys to not try something because daddy didn't like it so I dropped any perceived dislike of foods and started fresh. I would eat anything at least three times and I found that much of the foods I didn't like were quite good. Most of the vegetables that I wouldn't eat I do now, but I prefer them raw or just steamed a bit. The more they are cooked the worse they are. So here I am having a broccoli snack, that I gave another chance for the sake of the boys, watching them enjoy it on their own. I guess you look for motivation where ever you can find it and when it comes to trying to be healthier any motivation is positive.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

christmas time in the city

Today we went to get a Christmas tree. We had successfully held Beautiful off until after Thanksgiving before she set to decorating for Christmas. We were going to go cut down a tree at any of the million or so U-Cut places but we decided to instead go down the street to the tree stand at the bottom of the hill. So all of us in the house headed over to the train and went one stop to the tree stand. We picked out a Noble Fir and got back onto the train to bring it home. We got some funny looks with a Christmas tree on the train but the people around us were thrilled. This older guy in Purple Pants kept saying "It's beautiful, merry Christmas, merry Christmas!" We walked it the block and half back to our house and got started decorating with some holiday tunes and a roaring fire. It was picturesque and you should be jealous.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

a wet saturday on my own

I have no kids with me today. Not much Beautiful either. She worked this morning and this evening and was spending some quality time with a friend of ours in much more need of her time then I. It has been a nice but aimless day. Wandering around the near North East side of Portland left me soaked and cold. I went to the bank and then just started walking in what was then a nice cloudy fall day. I listened to some middle school age kids talk to an older kid about their love for writing. In this case the writing was tagging up walls with Industrial Sharpies but their conversation was enlightening. They were all lamenting some recent "writing" on a neighbors fence. "Residential writing is out of bounds man!" I was out in search of a coffee shop for some reading and people watching, and really just out to wander. I found a nice place and enjoyed a strong cup of some ethically harvested small batch locally roasted and overpriced coffee while getting lost in a book. The book is well written though has way too much penis in it. Every chapter has some new highly descriptive phallic allusions and it is getting a bit comical. It was almost as if the author made a bet with a friend that she couldn't work a penis reference into every chapter of the book. So far I am 11 chapters in and the author is definitely winning this bet. Finishing the last cold drink of coffee I looked up to some increasingly heavy rain. I bundled up against the weather and made my way back to the train stop to head home. In hindsight all that wandering was a terrible idea. I was soaked by the time I got to the train and still had to make a bit of a walk from the train to my house. Sometime during the walk I lost my glasses. They were beaded with rain drops so I took them off and put them in the pocket of my coat for safe keeping. My pocket betrayed me though and now I have a choice between some nice wire framed glasses that are bent all to hell or some classic black framed glasses that I have had for ever. Since glasses are not in the budget until some full time job comes down the pike I will go with the black ones. The digital camera also died this week and will have to wait to be replaced as well. Since these bad things seem to happen in threes I was on the look out for the third one when I read that Tyrus Thomas broke his arm lifting weights this morning. This might not seems so bad to many of you but I just picked him up in a trade that hasn't even fully gone through in my Fantasy Basketball league. I'm probably more bummed by Thomas getting hurt then I am about losing my glasses and I really loved those glasses. They were Converse, and brown, and they looked great with my beard. After making it home out of the rain I laid around watching some football before getting outside to chop some wood my dad dropped off the night before. I got out there right before Beautiful got home from the morning job. That was the plan, make it look like I have been hard at work all morning doing manly things around the house like chopping wood and clearing gutters. She was duly impressed but I might have ruined the illusion by telling our friend Robin what I was up to. Beautiful is now working downtown and I am sitting in another coffee shop reading some more about johnsons and following basketball scores on the laptop. I could do this from home and save the 3 dollars on the latte but it feels like doing nothing when I am at home. Here it feels like i'm out, among the studying masses. Like I'm part of this collective effort to become more intelligent over coffee and indie female singer songwriters. Enough of this writing silliness, I have to get back to chapter 15. I just don't no how she is going to work some sausage into this scene, but the previous 14 chapters have proven that our author is a genius with trouser snake.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

in search of snow and papa

My dad is working in Central Oregon, neither Beautiful nor I had to work today so we decided to go have dinner with Papa. The path to papa led over Mt. Hood, or around it anyway so we also went in search of snow. We left around 11 in the morning to make a day of it and it really was a great day. We found some snow in piles and the boys got me with snow balls, or frozen chunks of snow from close range. Since we arrived in Madras, where my dad is working building a contraption that allows the fish to maneuver the new damn, early we decided to explore a little. We followed sign to Overlook Park but they led down some deserted looking roads. I was sure we were soon to be abducted and tortured at any moment but we eventually made it to this overlook and man was it amazing. It looked down into this canyon with a lake below and Mt. hood in the distance. We ran around playing in the brush and enjoying the lovely fall day. These are the days where we take to heart the advice of our great friend Linsey. She told Beautiful that the one thing she regretted most in her frantic job search was not taking time to enjoy the time she had. We are frantic in our job search but really enjoying the opportunity to leave at 11 AM and head over the mountain and through the brush to Papa's work we go. We had diner with Papa at the Black Bear Restaurant in Madras and the boys were thrilled. Finn screamed "Papa's here, Papa's here, I'm so excited!" and Henry stood next to him the whole night at diner laying on his shoulder and kissing him. We made the 2 hour trip back with the boys falling asleep in the back and Beautiful and I listening to some music with smiles.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

turn around

Finn has a strap on his guitar, a Halloween addition so he could wear it as part of his costume. The strap has added a spark to his stage show though. Here he is working on some new moves.

a pair of monkeys

Two Costumes two years apart for my two little monkeys. This is like on of those US magazine "Who Wore it best?" things. I mean I have heard they do that. I don't really read US magazine or anything so I wouldn't know about that or about Stars being just like us.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

falling back

It is the November already and in Portland today it is lovely. The sun is out though it is cool out and most of our neighbors are raking leaves into the road for the leaf pickup later this week. It has been over four months since I lost my job and we are still no where near a job for Beautiful. The late summer business has passed and she has worked very little the last couple of weeks. She has been having a rough time of it lately feeling the weight of our situation with out any real way to do anything about it. We are still making it for at least one or two more months and have tentatively committed to six more months after our lease ends in December. We have had a number of conversations about what is important to us as a family. Is living in Portland more important then me being home with the kids? things like that. Right now we still want to be here in Portland but if Beautiful doesn't have a job by the end of the six month lease then we will look elsewhere for work. As a family it is more important to us that I be the one home with the boys and Beautiful be the one working then it is for us to live in a specific place. So we wait and see. We pray and we hope.