Thursday, October 4, 2018


Ugh.  Got flu shot but whatever the girls are bringing home from school is more powerful.  I had a vague sore throat earlier this week, but it was bad along with my ears yesterday and hardly any voice.  It worries me that I have to travel Monday night.  I'm hoping it's a lot better.  I'm taking some over-the-counter stuff, and my throat feels better.  Since I want to sleep on the plane Monday night, maybe I'll get some of the regular Nyquil.  I've heard that will put you out.  I have to find a happy medium between being alert when I get to Atlanta and getting some sleep.  Not a fun thing to add to my anxiety already.

When I feel bad, I don't want hovering, but this morning I welcomed it.  Elise got her Dad's empathy gene and - well - hovers.  I had coffee, a pill, blueberry waffle, and a fire.  When I got up to get ready to go get the girls off to school, she informed me she was taking over this morning.  She doesn't go into work until 3:00, so she's free most mornings.

I did protest a little bit, but she overrode every protest.  I made a whole page list of what to do to get them both out the door and where to take Graysen.  Katherine stays home today, so I hope Elise is going to be available for the nonstop talking she does.

I think I like it, a little hovering.  I've just learned to cope by myself the past few years - and all those years when Mike was working in Texas, but it's nice to have responsibility taken over by someone else.

When Elise looked at the list, I figured she would be offended that I didn't trust her to know what to do, but she didn't, and what she said made me have tears.  She said, "There's so much love in this list.  So much that you do for them."  I don't think of it like that.  Some mornings, I feel like a drill sergeant barking out commands.  Socks.  Teeth.  High pony tail, low pony tail, barrette?  Which shoes?  Which coat?  Check the weather.  Watch the clock.

Let's see how it works out with Katherine here today.  Tomorrow is Friday, and Emily is off early - and then the weekend.  I'll just concentrate on getting better before Monday night.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Leaves and Slugs

Kate was fascinated by this brown slug we saw.  She watched him going as fast as he could, and she said she was going to help him so he wouldn't get stepped on.

When she touched him, he turned into a turtle.  She said.

It was blustery all day but not cold until about 5:00 when Graysen showed me she could see her breath.  It's pouring and 44 degrees.  I'm going nowhere.

Tomorrow Graysen is going on her FIRST EVER SCHOOL BUS RIDE and is so excited.  They're going to Seattle to see The Very Hungry Caterpillar, and Emily is a parent volunteer.  If the timing works out for Emily to take Katherine to school, I'm going to snuggle in for the morning.

I'm making progress on cleaning out my garage and have been hauling around boxes and boxes of stuff to donate.  Yesterday I finally got to the YMCA where the Good Will truck parks Saturday through Monday.  What a relief to unload all that.  I've enjoyed talking to the drivers.  It can't be much fun sitting there hour after hour hoping someone will come by - or maybe hoping they won't.  I don't know.  The last one asked me if I were Australian because of my accent.  That's a first, I believe.  Yesterday there was a really nice young guy who was stationed in Savannah for awhile and then lived in Pensacola.  He and his wife are renting and trying to buy a house but running into the same problem as most people here.  Sky-high prices.  The median price per square foot of King County homes is $325.

This is what a million dollars will get you.  Three bedrooms, one bath, 1600 sq ft.  One million!  I think it's on the water - but still.

Single Family Home For Sale: 14565 6th Ave NE

Just fascinated by statistics for this area.  There are 255,000 children ages 1 to 9 in the county.  The median income for Snoqualmie is twice the rest of the country.  I probably really bring down the average!

Just rambling and enjoying being dry for the moment.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Mud Pit Girl Plus Chocolate Ice Cream

During the time Graysen was at Rooster Valley, I would see parents pick up their kids, mainly the little boys, put them in the back of the SUV and completely change their clothes and shoes.  I thought they were just being extra clean and protecting their car since Graysen never seemed that dirty.  

But it looks like I'm going to need to keep a change of clothes and a ton of wipes in the car for this girl.  It made me laugh, and she didn't enjoy being laughed at.  

Cruise Days

I managed to write some memory for almost every day in September.  Not much happened, but I think I will be glad one day to read it.  Now this weekend is the end of the month, and I'm just cruising - doing nothing but just what i want to do.  Which is nothing worth writing about. 

Today is a cloudy gray day, and I'm not sure what I'll do with it.  Next weekend will be the pumpkin search at Remlinger Farms.  The next weekend I'll be in Alabama. 

I might work a little.  I might clean a little.  I'll definitely update September's budget and start on October's as well as checking next week's calendar. 

I'll cook a pork tenderloin and make a grocery list.

I'll start my packing list.  No books to read.  No pressure.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Froggy Morning

This view was amazing on the way to school this morning.  Katherine and I talked about fog for about 10 minutes, and when she got to school, she announced, "There's frogs on the mountain!"

She's willingly going into her class in the mornings now and calls all the kids her friends, although she only knows the names of two of them.

I took a wrong turn when I left Graysen's school this morning and saw such beautiful leaves that I went home that way after I dropped off Katherine.  I just wanted to keep driving.  This picture is about 2 blocks from home, so I'll get out and walk in the morning and enjoy it more.

It's an exciting day for Cascade View.  First, it's Spirit Day, and the kids are encouraged to wear clothing from their favorite teams PLUS they can wear caps all day long!  AND because they filled up the Marble Jar (good behavior maybe?) they get to have Movie and Candy Day.  Graysen's take on it, "Don't bring your candy from home because the teacher will have some.  We voted.  I voted for bring your favorite stuffy animal from home, but movies won.  But I'm glad."

Graysen wore one of her Auburn shirts, and we figure it will be the only one of it's kind.  Her next door neighbors said they are wearing their BYU shirts, and there will be hundreds of Tampa Bay ones, I'm sure.

Katherine was not happy about having to wear a T-shirt under her favorite kitty sundress and decided she would wear her owl coat - even though it's not raining or even especially cool.  The Paw Patrol hat finally got tossed down because she couldn't get it to cover her ears.  You just never know ...

Graysen still like to stand and survey the playground before she goes in for friends.  It won't be long before I can just drop her off from the car - but I'm treasuring her needing me to give her a kiss and three waves.

When Emily and Ryan decided to buy the house next door, part of the reason was the more livable floor plan.  Emily had long wanted a quiet place where she could work and read and just enjoy some quiet.  There are several spots in this house for her, but this is my favorite.

Weekend coming up fast.  

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Good and Satisfying Day

It's late, and I'm tired, but it was a great day.

Walked Graysen to school like Tuesday where she met one of her classmates and ran inside, again without looking back - Yuki, I think. 

Katherine and I walked back leisurely, kicking leaves and chatting.

We had a nice long day where she played outside some, upstairs some, and on the floor in the kitchen while I cleaned.

I told Emily I would go over and do some cleaning on one of my days off, but I'm kind of selfish with those, so I find I can do all I need to do on Tuesdays and Thursdays with Katherine there.  She helps me a lot and entertains herself, so I'm able to clean the whole downstairs with no problem.  Tuesday we swept leaves off the patio, and today I heard her out there with the push broom - probably sweeping them back onto the patio.

We walked back and got Graysen and came back to the apartment by the water park, as they call it.  We met Elise leaving for work, and now we've just finished a snack of leftover lemon cookies from the rester-naut last night and some pretzels.

Emily is on her way home, and I told her I would bring the girls home in about an hour so she can have some alone time - then it's ME time.  I hope I don't get too sleepy to get some things done.  I woke up at 3:34 this morning for no reason, so it's really been a long day.

Soon it will be time to start packing for my trip, but I need to find out more about the weather. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Best Birthday Ever - So Far

This was a perfect day.  I got more cards, more happy birthday wishes on Facebook, a sweet package from Debby, and even a call from Guatemala!  It was wonderful talking with Dina.

Now we're getting ready to go to a restaurant in Bellevue.  Emily says it's not "fancy" or we wouldn't take the kids, but it has a fancy name.  It will be fun.

Cards from Graysen and Katherine.  


I believe someone told Graysen I wanted a pinata.  And there is is.  And balloons.  And a new hairdo for my two strands of hair!

 Katherine was all excited about playing in the mud pit with Porter, but she did tell her teacher it was Mimi's birthday.

Ryan did a great job getting them dressed and ready for school.

Back later with dinner pictures (maybe).

We went to an Italian restaurant called Maggiano's in Bellevue.  It was as good as I thought it would be, and we had a great time.  It took a lot of imagination and bread to keep Katherine in her seat.  LOTS of bread.  And spaghetti.  And lemonade.  And lemon cookies.  They did fine though.

I kept thinking about the Shining the whole night, for some reason.

I took three pictures and my battery went, as usual.

This is Bellevue near the restaurant.  It's bigger and busier than I want to get involved in, but I did see a Container Store.  Not that I'll be driving there, but it's good to know where one is if I ever need anything.

We did agree that this is going to be a good year for me, even though I need a new phone, a new computer and possibly some kind of newer car.  Life is still good.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Walking to School

Admiring their best work before school.

We walked from Steller Way this morning, instead of the apartment, since we had plenty of time and it was such a beautiful morning.

We noticed Shradda coming out of her house with her dad, so we asked her to walk with us.  She and Graysen enjoyed running ahead the whole way while Katherine and I ambled along admiring the leaves and porch decorations.

It just makes my heart happy to see Graysen going in that big front door with a friend and joining a troop of little girls and running off giggling.  She has adapted to all-day every-day school better than we expected.  She never even looked back to say good-bye and wave three times.   And I'm happy about it.

 Katherine seems to be happier now too.  She has a best friend Porter, aka the boy in the green shirt.  I asked her yesterday if Porter wore the green shirt, since that's how she refers to him, and she said, "Uh, no.  He had on a red shirt, I think,"  His mother is one of the teachers, and she says he's always sad on Tuesday and Thursday when Katherine isn't there.  I think she's destined to have one good friend at a time, always a boy.  She finally mentioned a girl's name, but it's usually her old friend James and Porter.

She didn't have school today, so we walked home enjoying watching the leaves fall and admiring the porch decorations.  One house has a bunny, a frog and a little girl on a bench, so that's our favorite.

She said this teeny tiny leaf was her very best friend and she would take care of it always.  She lost it 10 minutes later and had to find another one.

 Oh, garbage day.

It's the eve of my birthday, and I feel really good about my life right now.  I'll go out to eat with the family tomorrow night, and I'm already getting Happy Birthdays from friends on Facebook, plus a few cards in the mail and a Starbucks card from Debra who never drank coffee when we were friends in Thomaston but does now.  She probably doesn't like it though!  Maybe we can have a cup one day together. 

I also got a gift from Ryan.  He's giving me the morning off by taking the girls to school.  I won't think about how he's going to do their hair.  Today was picture day for Graysen, so nothing else matters. 

Emily called Elise earlier to find out what they could do for me to celebrate, and I told them I wanted a pinata.  One that you have to hit with a stick, not the kind you just pull a string.  I want to release some of my aggression.

Like this.

Image result for pinata

But want this one.

Image result for pinata

Missed Day

I wrote two different posts yesterday and was waiting for slow pictures and forgot to hit publish, so maybe that counts as effort since I have only 5 more days to go.  I'm totally going for it.

One more beautiful tree picture before I wake up and find all the leaves have fallen.

This is the short cut we take to school, and the girls love these arrows.  School is two blocks, so we really NEED a shortcut.  Tuesdays and Thursdays are the days we can walk leisurely to school and not have to do a quick drop off.  Katherine and I will probably walk home by the park and take some more pictures.  I can't get enough of the prettiness.

Monday, September 24, 2018

To the Fair!

Now that I've recovered and slept 3 hours, I can talk about the fair.  It was the best birthday gift.  A beautiful day with blue skies but cool and breezy at first and warmer in the afternoon.

We walked a LOT.  The girls rode 3 rides.  We found all the fair food.  And it was enough for two little girls and Mimi.  Their parents too.  Ryan was a good sport to trail along with us and act like he enjoyed everything.

They were fascinated by the big rides that you could see from the parking lot - the roller coaster, the ferris wheel, that thing that lifts you way up in the sky and drops you over and over.  The sling shot thing.  They couldn't get enough of the people hanging there and screaming, but when it came time to actually choose something to ride, it was a different story.

The lines to ride a couple of things reminded me of Disney World lines.  We stood for a while and waited to ride the carousel.  All four of them rode (or stood) but Katherine did not like it.  She finally spotted me and waved through her tears and smiled when she saw me.

We found two rides where there were no lines that Graysen really wanted to ride.  The motorcyles thrilled her just to get on, but when it started, it was bumpier than she expected, and she looked a little tense.

The little cars were the best thing though.  They picked out their pink car and couldn't wait to get in it.  It had an obnoxious horn, and they blew it constantly.  Graysen yelled, "I'm finally driving.  I'm driving a REAL car."  Then on the way home, she asked if she could drive and seemed genuinely puzzled when Emily explained how old you had to be and how you had to pass a test, etc.

We'll go to a big pumpkin patch/amusement park, Remlinger Farms in two weeks, and they do love those rides, even the roller coaster - and we get a pumpkin and good food to eat.

Salmon Days in Issaquah is the same weekend, but I'm sure I won't go to both.  We went when Graysen was maybe 2 years old, all of us, and enjoyed it, but that was enough for me - the crowds, so much walking, lines, the expense!  Elise wanted me to bring her a funnel cake, and it was $10.  One guy sat down at our table at lunch today with his little girl.  She had a shaved ice thing that he was moaning over paying $6 for.

I was really proud of the girls for not asking for anything.  Well, they did want a Hello Kitty balloon and a Skye balloon and cotton candy and a caramel apple and various other things, but they listened when we told them they could have just a couple of things.  Besides the carousel tears, there was no crying or whining, and the girls kept up pretty well.  It was just fascinating to them to see everything and eat cotton candy and drink lemonade.

We had the experience of going to a State Fair and got it out of our systems and probably won't go again.  There are so many other small festivals around here to enjoy.

The walk back to the car seemed much longer than before, and we were all glad to get in the car.  The girls had asked for a caramel apple - or CARMEL, as Ryan said and as it was spelled on the signs - dipped in M&M's.  We got them one on the way out, and they got to have one bite in the car.

Emily pretended to take a bite and got a couple of protests.