Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Oh Happy Day!

So weird how it's almost always sunny every time we have guests over. So far this year we had some friends come stay with us last month from Utah and my parents just left this morning after a couple days - Both times we enjoyed beautiful sunny days the whole time they were here!

Same thing happened last year with a couple of exceptions.

This is so surprising to me since that days like those are hard to come by. Seattle only averages 55 sunny days a year - mostly during summer.
{Today is back to cloudy - oh Mother nature, why do you tease me so?}

As for the rest of the days, we average 226 cloudy days (4th most in the U.S.)
This is what a typical day looks like:

Or this:

Floating Bridge - Cloudy Day

And then there are these glorious-perfect-temperature-beautiful-green-trees-contrasting-with-equally-beautiful-blue-skies SUNNY DAYS. There's nothing like it.

Floating Bridge - Sunny Day


Lake Washington

So I guess the message here is come on over ... and don't forget to bring the sun with you :)

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Candy is Dandy

Happy Valentine's Everyone. We've sort of been boycotting Valentine's day for years now. At least in the commercial sense. It started out innocently enough. We tried to go out and have a good ol' time on Valentine's day only to be met with crowded restaurants, traffic and sold out signs at the theaters, concerts, and games. Plus they jack up the price for roses and candy {I'm talking chocolate truffles here}. We must've had fun 'cause afterwards we were broke ... you would think. In the end, the best {and cheapest} way to say "I love you" is saying it ...

Tonight we'll avoid the crowds and celebrate a quiet Valentine's day at home with pizza and a movie. Come March we'll splurge on something fun for our anniversary.

Ian was asked to bring one Valentine for each of his preschool classmates. Weird to me that this romantic holiday is for kids, too, but according to Dusty, kids really get a kick out of it. Poor Ian, his mom is the least crafty person in the world. I already feel bad that his preschool bag is not decorated like the other kids' in his class (unless you consider a muddy footprint at the bottom decoration). So I wanted to get this right.

"Dumb question, what's a valentine?" I asked Dusty

"For kids, it's a valentine's card with some candy in it ... that's what we used to do when we were little." He told me.

Wednesday morning, the day of Ian's preschool party, Dustin is all:

"So you know what to look for right? A pack of valentine cards for kids with candy in it" Trying to make sure I don't screw this up for Ian.

"Got it" I said.

I get to Freddy (Fred Meyer) and 30 minutes later, I still can't find this thing. I did find some valentine cards with a monkey on the front and thought it'd be appropriate - but it came with no candy.

Later I call Dusty at work:

"They were all out of the cards with candy, so I bought some without, do you think that's enough?"

"Oohh, I guess we would buy the candy separate and then put them in the envelope" He says.

Duh. {rolling my eyes} I guess I could've thought of that. It was too early to think straight {10 am} ...

At this point, we're already running a little late. I find a Rite Aid on the way to the preschool, run in, buy some candy, run outside only to find out Ian had swiped a shiny yellow car from the store when I wasn't looking {he showed me the car with a big grin on his face - lol} run back in to return the toy car. Back to our CRV ... we made it. Phew.

That day, Ian came home with a bag full of valentine cards and candy - one from each of his little friends. I helped him open and read each one. It gives me an idea of what to do for him next year.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Please Help Bring Sean Home

Imagine your spouse has taken your child away and then refused you any contact with him. Sounds like a nightmare. Unfortunately, that was exactly what happened to a Dad in New Jersey, David Goldman and his son Sean. His wife at the time, Bruna, took their 4-year-old son Sean to her native Brazil, and unbeknown to David, she had no intentions of ever coming back.

It's been over 4 years and little has been done in David's behalf. David was, by all accounts, a good and caring father. Bruna has since passed away. David was able to see his son earlier this month for the first time since his being taken to Brazil. It seems that after some media attention and backing from some authority figures, slow progress is being made. Nothing is certain yet. I read this morning on his website that his case was referred to the Federal court in Brazil.

We live in a crazy world. These and other stories like it we see in the news just break my heart. It makes me hug my son extra tight at night and be grateful for all my many blessings. As a parent, I'm appalled at this mom's behavior. I can't even begin to imagine how much pain and anguish this guy was put through. As a Brazilian myself, I'm very upset it has taken this long for his case to reach Federal court. I pray and hope that Sean and his Dad can be reunited soon.

There's an online petition you can sign at David's website: http://www.bringseanhome.org/- You can also click on "how to help" link at the top for other ways you can help like making a donation or contacting your congressmen.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

All Dogs Go to Heaven

Dustin on a sleddog run. Ice is the lead dog on the left.

The hardest part of having a pet is saying goodbye.

Our dog Ice, who's been living at Dustin's parents for the past several years, passed on a couple of days ago.

She was such a sweet and pretty dog. You couldn't help but like her, even a cat person like myself.

She was so sweet to people but not so nice to the other dogs in the house. If you were petting Ice and and another dog would even try to come close, she would bare her teeth, growl and snap at that other dog and then, a half a second later, turn back to you with her sweet angel face. There's was just something very endearing about that.

Ice was an old dog and it's so sad to know she's gone, but I'm glad she's no longer in pain and that she lived a happy and productive life as a sled dog for Dustin.