Our holiday photo session

I thought maybe we could try a photo session… 

you know… for the holiday card?

So they tried.

Really hard!

But really? After 5 days of camping…

and some cool moss everywhere…

How could you not play with it! (and mess with this Mamá a little.)

But yes… they finally smiled at me… one more time!  Really? One more photo, Mamá? And then we realized, we needed another person to take the picture of all of us together anyways! So it turns out to be a photo session for this blog….  to remember in the future.  Perfect!

A camping birthday : friends

There are so many beautiful memories.

We’ve been here celebrating before.

A beautiful place.

Besides the first day being close to 100 degrees, we had a cold and somewhat wet weekend.  But we got warm by the fire.  Roasted marshmallows and talked by the fire.

We played and we laughed.

Had great conversations.

Tried to keep mosquitoes away.

Got hair cuts.

Relaxed and sat by the fire. Enjoyed the company and the stories.  Saw the kids grow, and see how much they’ve grown in the past 5 years we’ve known each other.

 

Met new friends.

Had great food brought and made by everyone.

To me: watermelon = summer happiness.

Also this sight = summer.

I’ll show around a little so you can see how beautiful this place is.

And good-byes after a beautiful, fun-filled three days.

See you soon.

And we continue to our next summer adventure with our bellies and hearts filled with with all kinds of love. Thank you for a beautiful time.

 

 

A camping birthday : the playing

Can it get any better than having a friend’s ‘camping birthday party’ in the summer?

Last year we missed it because we were in India, but this year…. we enjoyed their company, their friends and family as much as we could. We had a beautiful weekend!

We played…

Big marshmallow fight…

Riding and pushing bikes.

Played baseball.

And played some more.

And more baseball.

My little ones learning from the big kids.

And everyone having fun.

And to the water.

Back to land for some more playing.

And back to the water.

For some more playing.

And to try new things.

Photo by Cindy.
Photo by Cindy.

And some more playing, all weekend long.

This time summering not simmering

Here, in these parts of the world, where the sun comes for special occasions, we make summer our own way.

I am not saying I don’t like it.  On the contrary, this is my kind of summer.  Cooler days, don’t mind the clouds, enjoy the sun when it appears, but don’t really go all the way out to greet it.  From the shade of trees, I’m perfectly fine.  I actually am better than fine.  I love it this way.

I don’t mind checking to see if it’s going to rain at night, each night (to bring cushions and put bikes and other toys away.)  I don’t mind it at all.  I just do it, usually.

I (and few other people who know me) don’t even know, how or why I always wanted to go to India.  I knew it was too hot for my comfort level.  I knew, I really knew.  But there is something about it.  I think there’s a lot about it, I guess.

The colors, the culture, the people, the food, always drove me to pick a book and read and look through it, and learn a little more about India.  Intriguing and amazing.  And now I know…. really amazing!

 

 

A year ago, we were immersed, bathed if you wish (it was monsoon season) in India.  We were in India for our adventure, and it all seems like a dream, now.

 

We talked to one of our good friends in Gwalior few weeks ago, and it made it a little more real again again.  Seeing them, even though it wasn’t in person, it made it real.  We were able to talk through this amazing little screen of ours, right on my desk, we were talking, in real life, with our friends.  Miles and miles away, nine o’clock our morning, nine thirty in their evening, but still the same day.

Seeing them bigger, growing up, both Lucas and Siena and our friend Popeye in India.  Listening to their exciting stories, and news through the speaker made it so much more real, once again.  Listening their voice, their laughs, seeing their faces, their smiles.  I miss them.  I do.

My head and heart fills with emotions.  Beautiful comments, beautiful voices, with that Indian accent I don’t want to forget.  It takes me back.  It takes me back to those mornings walking to the school with them.

Seeing Siena and Lucas ride in Deb’s motorcycle.  No helmets (I know… I never got used to it), the three of them, Siena and Lucas hanging on as tight as they could, for a ride few yards to school.  Seeing their face beaming with happiness when they’d get on that motorcycle, is something I’ll never forget.   Thank you Deb, for all those rides and beautiful memories!

Oh…. so many new things we experienced in our (almost) five months in India.  So many, so many new experiences.  So many new stories for them (and me) to tell and remember.  Forever.

I am printing photo books from our trip, so we can have them on hand to look through, on our coffee table.  Just at an arm’s reach, ready to travel again.  We do that a lot here in our house.  The blog and the internet is great, but there’s something so special about holding a book in our hands. No stories (that’s the blog I guess), just photos.

These books bring back memories, stories, faces, sounds, sights, thoughts, and so much that we had last year.  I really hope we won’t forget those stories.  So many.  So many amazing stories.  Oh my…. or was it a dream?

I know, it was real.  This time though, I am feeling the chilly nights now, and it’s only August.  The end of the month is near.  Mark has started work, classes will start soon, the days are getting shorter, and the temperature is dropping a little.

All this is enough to remind me that this time, this August, I’m in Portland.  The rain will soon come, and it won’t come with heat.  It won’t be the end of the monsoon season.  It will be cooler, it will be the beginning of autumn.

But right now, we are still enjoying the sunshine when it comes.  We are spending as many hours outside as we can, eating meals outside, and Siena and Lucas still sleeping in our backyard.  But it’s coming, I know, the end of our summer-ing is coming, and we have many memories to share again, and a new beginning to look forward to.

:: this moment : now + then ::

A beautiful and fun Friday ritual. Inspired by SouleMama.

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. – Amanda Soule

And a year ago…

If you’d like to leave a comment and a link to your moment, we would love to see it. Have a beautiful day.

More blueberries, please

I think we’ve gone picking blueberries three times already.

This time we went up higher, because down here by Portland, they are almost all done.  So we went up to Sandy, towards Mt. Hood to a place we’ve gone before.

This man, planted I don’t know how many plants 60 years go, and has seen them grow all this time.

The plants are huge!  The field is filled with blueberry plants, some like a small tree, with thick branches.

Plants, filled with fruits.

We asked him how he kept the birds out of his field, because he doesn’t have any of those recordings to scare the birds from these fruits.  He said “Every morning I ask them to leave.”

We might have enough to get us through until the next season.  We don’t know.  We keep eating them in smoothies, and frozen as a snack.  They are just so good!

Lists : what I like

If you’ve gone to see Pinterest, maybe you understand… browsing Pinterest I found a pin from a friend that made me look at this other person’s page and her projects.  She has a list for different things and it made me think of those list myself.  I am a list person after all!

So here’s my list of  What I like:

: feelings

: fresh flowers

: a beautiful magazine

: gardens

: chocolate

: mountains

Sharpies

: yarn

: fabrics

: calmness

: turquoise-type blue

: lemonade made from fresh lemons

: dried herbs (picked by us especially)

: music

: notebooks

: handmade paper

: the moon

: good stories

: handmade quilts

: tablecloths

: chai

: fire inside or outside

: be together with my family

: bagels

: rivers

: Margaritas

: sewing

: snow

: watercolor

: Scrabble

: making and enjoying things we make and grow

:: salt in my food

: taking pictures

: when the sun comes out right after the rain

: knitting

: meaningfulness

What do you like? Make a list here in the comments or you can link us to your page if you’d like to share.  Would love to know! Have a great day and hopefully get to do some of the things in your like list.

Our Potatoes

Back in the spring, we planted potatoes.

For the first time, we bought ‘some’ (too many) potatoes at the nursery.  We had to build another raised bed for them.

And now… we are thinking (again) we have too many potatoes in our hands!  But really…. who can have too many potatoes.  We are excited.

So few days ago, we decided to go get the potatoes from the ‘strawberry bed’ which had quite a few volunteer potatoes come up.

I think the potatoes did better than the strawberries in there…

But that’s OK.

We like them all!

And had a really good dinner! And I’m sure many more to come.