Goodbye Dear Friend

Let’s see if I can type this without crying.

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We had to put down our sweet, beloved, furry baby on Monday.  He would have been 15 in April, and we were so blessed to have been his for 14 of those years. He outlasted everyones expectations, and we are so thankful he did!

As 2 (very) young newly married kids, we went to ‘just look’ at the pound, and came home with a 50 pound ball of fur. We had to sneak him into our apartment! We were moving out in 2 days, but the pound said that they just couldn’t hold him for us. He helped us learn more about ourselves, and life in general. He was waiting by the door as we brought our first baby home. He was waiting by the door as we brought our second baby home.   As the boys have grown up he’s been a constant playmate.

But in the past year he’s slowed down. He was happier inside, than out, but he would lay outside and watch them play. He still lit up when he saw his red leash in one of their hands. He wagged his tail in delight when we walked in the door after school, or running errands.

Until recently. He was tired. He was confused. He seemed sad. We knew his time was near, but we put it off. We prayed God would let us have one more Christmas, and praise Him, he did! It was right after the New Year we started to notice the biggest changes. After 4 bad days we decided we couldn’t keep him here for our good. We needed to make that tough decision for his best interest. So we did. The boys had the day off of school. We brushed him one last time. The boys asked to feed him one last time. We went for one last walk around the block. It was painfully obvious that it was difficult for him. We went to the park one last time, running around and just laughing. We didn’t even care about the 5* weather. It was sunny and clear. It was a beautiful day. He found a chicken bone by the trash and was so happy. We went for one last drive. It wasn’t long enough.  We went to the vet, one last time. I sat in the waiting room with Tiny. Fred wanted to spend every precious second with Java, so he went back with Jason.  Java was held until he took his one last breath.

It was a silent drive home.  The tears waited until we were home. He was not by the door waiting for us.  It was devastating.  After letting the tears flow we looked though hundreds of photos. Pictures we’ve long forgotten. It was the best way to spend the afternoon. Remembering Java’s better days.  Seeing his young face helped us realize how bad he had gotten.  I sit here and think, now I have one more reason to look forward to heaven one day. But while The Good Lord wants me here, I know Java couldn’t be in better hands, and he’ll be waiting by the front door when I get there.

spring09-6

Spring 2009

Just a Little Somethin’ to Dwell on.

Story:

So this woman buys a McDonald’s hamburger and fries. She sets it out on the counter and takes a picture  of it. I mean who in their right mind wouldn’t?  Seriously. Well, she continues to photograph this fine specimen.  For 1000 days.  Yes.

One.Thousand.Days.   I did the math for you…. that’s 142 weeks. Or 32.8 Months. OR 2 years and 8 months.

Sally Davies Flicker

This is not exclusively a McDonald’s issue. It’s any place that uses highly processed, highly preserved food. We’ve all eaten it. We’ve all hit the drive through when time was short, or wanted a lazy meal.  But stop and think for a minute about the last time you cleaned out your car and you found that hidden fry that shimmied in between the seats, and found a nice home under the bench seat. It was there for months, yet it still looks like it did the day you purchased it.  There’s your warning that you’re not eating real food.  Real food rots!!!

Please eat real food!

Too Busy?

I was getting ready to write up this post, and was thinking about how busy, and rushed we’ve been, and I stopped in my tracks when I realized that, that is seriously ALL I ever blog about!  Like no one knows that…. or even really cares!  I mean really did you really come here to read all about how busy I am?  Are you really surprised to learn that we stay busy all the time? Are you new here?

I started to think about all the times how busy we all are, and/or how tired we always are comes up in our daily conversations.  I know for me it’s a pretty common topic of discussion. I think it’s for a couple of reasons.

1) It’s true, and we are just talking the truth.
2) Lack of real, in depth topics to engage in.
3) We feel like martyrs. Like we need a crown or a trophy in honor of how busy we stay all the time. And heaven forbid someone not acknowledge how busy we are!

I certainly hope I DON’T fall into the 3rd category!  In all truth, I think a lot of the time I fall into the second, though.

Of all the things that are on our list…
-Work
-Soccer and soccer practice 4 times a week
-Church (that includes prep for my Sunday School class)
-Youth group events
-School events
-Class at CWI for me
-Daily chores, including  grocery shopping and boring stuff like that

Etc, etc….. you get the point. looking over the list, it’s not all that overwhelming, but it just keeps us busy.
Like every.other. single.houseold.in.America.

Then I got to thinking about WHY we all seem to insist on staying busy, having every-last minute of our day full.

1) We choose to.

That’s it. That’s the only reason I could come up with. Well, besides the whole work thing.  None of us really have a choice to cut that out of our schedules! But every other thing on our list, or your list is a choice.

Soccer? We choose to shell out the money for our boys to play soccer every season. Because THEY like it.  I think that might be the easiest thing to scratch off our list! It takes up the most amount of time, it doesn’t benefit me directly. It kills our gas budget. It kills our overall budget, and it cuts into the boys homework time.  But the boys love it. They keep their grades up. It teaches them team skills useful in life. It keeps them active. It shows them that we care about them, and the things they like. And it’s fun.

Church?  Well yeah, that’ a choice, but not in this house.  We love the Lord, we love to go, and worship Him. We love to teach the boys, and the kids at church about Him. Jason and I both know a life without Him, and that’s not an option anymore!

Youth group? Same idea as church, but more fun.  🙂

School Events? We choose to send our kids to a school that has a few more concerts and events than the average school. We choose to drive our kids to a different town to go to that school. We choose to put our kids in a school, that we feel, is better quality than the one down the street.

Going back to college? Yeah, a total time sucker. More than I thought it might be? YEP, but still my choice!  I had the option to back out the first two weeks of school, AND get my money back, but I chose to stay in for the long haul!

Daily chores and such?  Yes, they are a choice, but I REALLY don’t want to be eligible for Hoarders!  And my family likes to eat… on clean dishes!

 

So yeah, I could take a few of these activities out of the line up and have a lot more  time on my hands. I also know that if we were to do that. We would start to get bored!

I’ll try to refrain from posting about how busy we are in the future. It really gets on my nerves!  Ha!

 

 

 

 

Vacation (Part 2)

We did pull ourselves away from the beach long enough to do a few other things.  Of course we went to the Newport Aquarium. We went to the Seattle Aquarium a few years ago, and we loved it.  While the Newport Aquarium is awesome, and we do encourage you to go, if you have plans of being in Newport, but we were a little disappointed, as we were told, and had read that the Newport Aquarium was much better, and bigger than Seattle.  It is a good aquarium, and because of the tunnels, it is amazing, but it was not better than Seattle. It was maybe equal.  Seattle’s outside portion was more visitor friendly, but Newport’s inside area was really geared towards kids, so either way, we had fun!

 

We made good friends with a walrus. We named him Wall E. Russ.  Yes, we are a creative bunch…. 😉

 

A second plan that was foiled was our trip to the Sea Lion Caves. We drove all the way down there, just to be told the elevator was broken, and that we couldn’t go down. We asked to use the stairs and they told us nope. The cave was closed, but that we should feel free to check out the gift shop.  We said nope, and drove all the way back to Newport, without seeing the sea lions. Sad times.  We did a lot of walking around town, we watched the fisherman bringing in their catch, and cleaning and cutting it. We ate. A lot. I dislike seafood, my trip to iconic “Mo’s”, I tried their burger and it was delicious. We tried the clam chowder, and we thought other smaller local places had better chowder.

 

This was the first time I was able to see the sun set all the way over the water.  And we only got to see it once the whole time we were there. All the other evenings it was too cloudy.  We watched it from our car because it was so cold, but it was amazingly beautiful!

 

Awe, the drive home. It was bittersweet. We were ready to go home, but we had had so much fun. We drove through the enter of Oregon, through Sister’s. Those mountains were mind blowing! They’re HUGE!  That no smoking sign cracked me up! I love it!  Also, beware, the drive between Bend and Burns is miserable. MISERABLE!!  It has to have a huge suicide rate. I was about to lose it, it is so boring. Blah.

 

Ahhhh, what a wonderful sight! We were so happy to be home, and to go pick Java up from the vet, where he was boarded.  On the drive home we were already planning our next vacation!

Yellowstone or Grand Canyon?

 

 

 

 

Our 2012 Vacation (Part 1)

* I have started this post twice now. The first time it was right after we got home. I had it nearly finished, and the whole page crashed. I was so irritated, I shut my computer down, and walked away.  I was pretty angry. I think I had loaded way to many photos. We do not go on vacation very often, so I think I just got a little excited. I spent awhile creating a bunch of collages, to help the process run a little smoother, and plus so many people have been sharing their vacation pictures, so it’s probably best that I scale it down a touch. The second time was last evening. It wasn’t that big of a deal this time, as I had only uploaded the pictures, and hadn’t put to much time into the actual text portion of it yet.  Nonetheless, it’s aggravating, and makes me want to punch my computer. After some searching I found WordPress’ old post editer, and I’m very hopeful this one will make it to being published. *

We started planning our  Oregon Coast vacation this year during spring break. We decided that if we really wanted to go, and not just talk about it, we needed to start planning and saving early. It’s not like it was almost 14 years ago, pre-kids, when we talked about it in bed one night, and got up and left the next morning! BUT, our trip was definitely worth the wait, and the going without to make it happen.
We got up, and left before the sun came up and headed towards Portland. We knew we didn’t want to make the entire trip to the coast in one day, so we planned to stop the night in Portland. We also started our trip with a very flexible mindset to our plans. This is a good thing because our plans got changed with our very first activity!  We wanted to take the boys to Multnomah Falls. It is AMAZING!  But as we drove down the narrow road it was immediately obvious that we would not be able to stop. There was NO parking anywhere. We were able to get a photo of one of the smaller falls, but not Multnomah. I was pretty disappointed, but there was a LONG line of cars behind us, and coming the other direction. Even it we would have parked, about 1/2 a mile away, our jackets were packed in the big suitcase on the bottom of our stack in the trunk. It was pretty chilly.   Soooo, no picture of  Multnomah Falls, but the boys were able to see it out the window.

(You can click on all of the pictures to make them larger, so you can see them better)

Driving:

Water Falls:

We came in at Lincoln City, and we had to stop. This was the first place I had ever seen the ocean. It is a special place for me, and now having it be the first place my boys saw and played in the ocean, just makes it even more precious to me! The weather was pretty good for the hour or two we spent playing and exploring the beach.

We stopped in Depot Bay on the way to Newport, to go to a book store that we went to during our honeymoon, but it was closed. We were able to recreate a photo that we took way back when we were younger, but this time Fred took the picture, not our camera on a rock with the timer set! And we weren’t wearing coats this time. 🙂


We stayed 3 days in Newport, and our hotel was right on Agate Beach. We were wondering where we were going to get directions to go see the dock that came in from Japan. After we put all our bags in our room, we headed down to the beach, and the Japanese dock was right there! We walked down to it everyday. It had a steady stream of people visiting it all day. It was cool the entire time we were there, 61 degrees, but the wind blew the whole time. We decided, who cares? We were on a beach vacation, so we acted like it. We dug wholes, made sand sculptures, and played in the water. We got lots of  stares, and quite a few people stopped, and watched us, or asking us what we were doing.  So, evidently it’s extremely rare for people to play on the beach  in Newport???

**End of Part 1…. to many pictures!  And I thought I cut out so many!

Update from the Scale

The evil, evil scale! Actually it’s not that evil, as long as I’m doing what I need to do.  I don’t always do that.

As of today I am down a total of 17.5 pounds since January 5th. I couldn’t be happier about that! Well I guess I would be happier if it were 18, or 23, or 30 pounds, but for now, today, I’m celebrating this great big 17.5!  2.5 more pounds and I get to treat myself to something. At first I was going to get my nails done, but now I’m kinda leaning towards a workout mat.

At 10 pounds I got myself these sweet pants:

C9 by Champion® Womens Mesh Athletic Pants - Assorted Colors.Opens in a new window

Target

I love the blue strip down the side, and they are so comfy! I have to roll the waste down on them because they are to big. Good thing they are drawstring!

 

So what should it be, mani/pedi or a workout mat. Or something else?