Sunday, December 10, 2017

Favorite Kick off to Christmas

My favorite TRUE start to the Christmas season is Janis's concert at her church. This year Frances and Mark had to miss it as she had games, but Henry, Maggie and my parents were front row. We even got to sit RIGHT in front of Janis. It was amazing, as usual. They have a new pastor who has amazing energy and gave a great sermon that I have been ruminating on all day...what a gift. The music was raw, emotional and jubilant. Most importantly, we got to see Janis. When we are with her, it does feel like a part of us is "home". She was and always will be a mother figure to my kids and to me. She guided and nurtured me through the first nine and half years of being parent and she was/is so invaluable in her wisdom and perspective. I just loved seeing her smile again and seeing her lovingly hug the kids again. Also....can you tell it was REALLY bright with amazing sun today? Secondly, it was the first time Henry wore "dress shoes"...well boots. He said he felt like he was wearing high heels. Hysterical.

Basketball Season Has Begun, Embracing the Moment we Have

Basketball season has started. This year Henry is playing for Lincoln with kids he will go to high school with and Frances is playing for the 5/6 Mac team......meaning the girls are a LOT taller than her. Both kids are such great leaders on their team and it was so fun to see them dive into another sport and see their grit and determination. It is also fun to see new kids on the new teams.

We had seven games this weekend....six basketball and one futsal. It is funny because when people hear that, many groan and say "aren't you sick of it, do you feel you have too much". True - we are NOT home all day and that is tough. But the benefit, is we are actually all together. I love the time in the car with the kids. We always seem to talk about fun things or listen to a good podcast. I love seeing the different parts of Portland and getting to walk Mac before or after the game in different neighborhoods. I love the time with one of the kids on the sideline...usually Maggie. This weekend she was HILARIOUS in that she brought a huge bag of chapter books. My parents and Gordon came to all of the games, so I got time with them. After the last game, out in Tualatin, Maggie and I found an adorable little shop to get her hair cut and she felt like a queen...after they got her dreadlocks out. All of this is to say, it is what we make it and we choose how we leverage and view our time. My life is so busy with work and the weekday activities, ironically jam packed weekend like these of games allow for some quality time with the kids we are taking. I am sure I will be tired and wanting a switch by me...every Spring break I do...but for now, I am loving it. 

Below are some picks from Rocky Butte park - which was near Henry's game. So GORGEOUS...and cold.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Runs on Opposite Sides of the Coast

I had a business trip in San Diego and then one in Washington DC...all in five days. The runs I was lucky enough to do in each city were beautiful and felt so lucky for the time...and so different.

Mo the Tree

After quite a busy week of work travel and activities, we finally had a free afternoon and a window of sun, so we quickly jumped in the car to go and get a tree. This time we went to a place that was farther away, but got good reviews. Well...apparently LOTS of people had the same idea as us. IT was really packed and long lines and I questioned the strategy, but we ended up cutting down a tree we love, seeing Mr and Mrs Claus, and getting some good family time in.

Pics of the Kids in What They Love Best

You tell me.....could my girls be any different? It is one of my favorite things about our family.

Llama Llama

This year we got to take Kris, Katie, Gordon to the place that the kids and I go every year to get a wreath.....but really it is to see the Llamas and donkeys. As usual, they did NOT disappoint.

Adventures in Portand

We then had a fun weekend with Auntie KK and Dwayne. We went to the Tram, Art Museum, bowling and LOTS AND LOTS AND LOTS of board games were played by all.....except me.

One of my favorite parts is Frances biked next to Mark and I while we ran on Leif Erickson. SO FUN.

We also had one night where we realized all the Original Reulands were wearing flannel....HILARIOUS.

Reuland Family Thanksgiving

We were lucky enough to have the Original Reuland family for Thanksgiving + Dwayne and Me. It was wonderful to be together and to get to know Dwayne better. Kris helped the kids make cool centerpieces and Frances decided to write each person a note, which I personally thought was THE BEST part of the holiday. 

End of Fall Soccer

After an undefeated regular season, Henry's soccer team had their eye on winning their tournament and heading to Utah. That said, in the semi-finals they had an INSANE game that went into double overtime and penalty kicks. Sadly they lost, but I was so proud of the boys grit and determination. I was also pretty impressed with the other team as the best far.... was a  I may or may not have been silently cheering for her. The game was on a perfect, sunny BUT chilly day. Maggie insisted on wearing her yoga outfit. Everyone else was freezing just looking at her, but she was happy as a clam.

Holy Moly MilkShake

My nephews got to go to the Ohio State game with my dad. They stopped in Portland en route from Anchorage to Ohio and we got to have dinner with them. We decided to go to Holstein's downtown as they have big screens and we could watch the football games. That said, the thing that stuck out....the milkshakes. HOLY. MOLY. It was so good to see the boys - they are amazing.