Sunday, July 30, 2006

I ♥ Portland, Part Deux

The second place we visited in Portland after the International Rose Test Garden was the Classical Chinese Garden. It is located in Portland's Chinatown neighborhood and takes up a whole city block! As in the Rose Test Garden, I was struck by how these gorgeous gardens exist right in the middle of a busy metropolitan area. They were beautiful!

Here are my boys maxin' and relaxin' checking out the fishies. Priorities, you know!

Can you see them?

Saturday, July 29, 2006

I Love Me Some Kid...Rock, That Is

Who is this, you may ask? It's Mrs. Kid Rock.

I'm so jealous.

Photo: Steve Granitz, WireImage.com

Monday, July 24, 2006

I ♥ Portland

This past weekend, Bill and I decided to head down to Portland, OR for a little sightseeing and to attend the 1st birthday party of Bill's cousin's little boy, Joey. We had such a great time! The first place we visited was the International Rose Test Garden. I am such a amateur gardener that I didn't even know what "Rose Test Garden" meant until I was told by our tour guide. Apparently rose growers can develop their own hybrids and send them to the Garden to see if and how well they will grow. Each hybrid is planted in part of a plot and volunteers take care of them.

As for me? It was fun just looking at the pretty flowers!

Each hybridist names his or her own rose variety before it is sent to the Garden. We found some pretty interesting names while we were looking around. For a complete list of the rose varieties, click here. It's pretty funny what people name their creations! For example:

The Barbara Streisand
The Michelangelo
Bill smelling Maria Shriver (He said she smelled pretty good!)

We also came across some beautiful hydrangeas in the rose garden (go figure!). I love hydrangeas!

I love this picture - a tiny view of the hustle and bustle of downtown Portland peeking out above the tranquilty of the Garden.

Yeah, It's Really Hot Here

I know that us Pacific Northwest folks shouldn't be complaining about the 90+ degree weather that we have been having lately, but, you see, we're just not used to this kind of thing. Half of us don't even have air conditioners! Well, Bill and I do but that's just 'cause we like to throw away money on those sorts of luxuries. This past couple weeks, though, has made it SOOOO worth it. Here is a picture of our atomic clock. Notice how it says the outdoor temperature is 90.5 degrees? Notice also that I took this picture at freakin' 8:26 at night? Grrooossssss!

You can also read Lisa's lament about the heat here. Dude, come stay at my house!!!! You always have an open invitation!!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Isn't He Cute?

Yeah, I think so too.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Aaron the Builder

During Mass yesterday, I had to take Aaron into the nursery because he's getting to where he can't sit through a whole service anymore. Our nursery has a policy that kids can't be dropped off by themselves until they are two years old, but a parent can go in there with them if they just need to work off some energy. The nursery has some really awesome toys and Aaron was immediately drawn to the Mega Blocks set. He loved stacking and taking apart the blocks so, of course, Mommy had to run right out after church and buy him his own set of Mega Blocks (I know, I'm outta control).

This morning before breakfast I was cleaning up a little around the house and realized that Aaron wasn't underneath my feet like he usually is. I found him in the middle of the living room happily stacking away. Maybe we have a future architect on our hands?

Dirt in a Controlled Setting

For Aaron's birthday, we bought him a sandbox. The jury's still out on whether or not he actually enjoys playing in it, but that could be the Toddler ADD kicking in where he can only play with something for a few minutes before he has to move on. It's hard for him to sit in the sand because I don't think he likes to be dirty, but he does like to taste the sand and sift it through his fingers. Here are some pictures I took of him playing.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

His New Thing

Aaron's new quirk is to climb into and sit in every box that happens to be laying on the floor. I would think that this is horribly uncomfortable but he loves to sit and play with whatever's inside!

Waitin' for Daddy to Come Home

Sunday, July 9, 2006

He's Walking!! (With a Little Help!)

Today I took Aaron and Reagan up to this awesome park where we live to get out of the house for a while. This park has a small lake with a paved trail all away around it that is perfect for strollers and walking dogs. The park is completely surrounded by beautiful trees, so you'd never know you were in the middle of a town. Now I get how people feel going to Central Park in New York City! I also wanted to take Aaron there so that he could have a little more room to practice his walking using the Hungry, Hungry Hippo walking toy that Grandma and Grandpa Q got for him. He got pretty tired of doing circles around our living room! Here is some video of him.

Cousin Lilly Loves Her Uncle Billy!

Bunny Head on a Platter!

Give us the money or the bunny gets it! Oh, wait. I guess he already did!

This was Aunt Pam and I's practice run for the Peter Rabbit cake we made for Aaron's birthday party. The second one turned out much better, I think!

Saturday, July 8, 2006

How to Give Mommy a Heart Attack

Lesson One:

Perch the boy precariously on the guard rail on top of the Space Needle (Don't worry! There was glass up to his shoulders and his daddy was just beyond the camera shot!).

Lesson Two:
Catch him "tasting" rocks during visit to Alki Beach.

Lesson Three:
Allow him to try to munch on a baby elephant at the Woodland Park Zoo.

Lesson Four:
Dress him in shorts and a T-shirt when there's snow on the ground (O.K., we were up on Mt. Rainier and there is always snow on the ground there. It was actually pretty warm!).

Friday, July 7, 2006

My Fourth of July Boy

I can't believe how much Aaron has changed compared to last year on the Fourth of July! I realize that babies change so much during the first year, but this looks like a whole different kid!

July 4, 2005
July 4, 2006

By the way, fireworks make my boy cry. On the Fourth of July, I noticed him watching the fireworks outside through our sliding glass door and thought he might like to go out and watch them. The moment the first big boom hit, so did the tears. This is when I brought him back inside and we sat and watched them on T.V.! This was far less traumatic!

Note to self...

If you can't find the boy, check the bathroom cabinet!

Thursday, July 6, 2006


For lunch on Father's Day this year, Daddy wanted to eat at The Rock, an awesome wood fired pizza place with a Rock 'N Roll theme. Daddy's favorite pizza is the "Crazy Train," while mine is "My Generation." As usual, we chose polar opposites in the way of types of pizza so we compromised on "The Founders Pie." It was so good! We love this place!

While we were eating, Aaron started to play Peek-a-Boo using his bib. He has just started doing this and it is so cute! Check it out!

Monday, July 3, 2006

Aaron's Second 1st Birthday Party

We threw Aaron another 1st birthday party about a week ago so that we could celebrate with our friends in Washington as well as with Grandma Q, Aunt Pam and Cousin Lilly, who flew up to visit with us for a couple weeks. I am so proud of how everything turned out and Aaron had a good time playing with his friends. The theme for the party centered around The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter because I absolutely love this story and thought it would fit a one-year-old perfectly! For example:

"Flopsy, Mopsy and Cotton-tail, who were good little bunnies, went down the lane to gather blackberries; But Peter, who was very naughty, ran straight away to Mr. McGregor's garden, And squeezed under the gate!"
Aaron, too, is very naughty!! Ha Ha Here are a few pics from the party.

Here is how we decorated the garage. Do you think our guests would be confused as to which house the party was at? Yeah, not so much.
The dessert table.

The table holding the favor bags for the kids. You'd be amazed how many Peter Rabbit things are out there floating around!

Aaron's friends, Noah and Mackenzie, and Cousin Lilly playing in the little pool that was one of his presents.

A close-up of the cake. Aunt Pam taught me how to do the fancy icing thing, then graciously took over halfway through when my hand got tired! Can you tell it's supposed to be Peter Rabbit?

The cupcakes. Aunt Pam also helped with the stenciling to make the sugar bunnies, tulips and butterflies on top.

Aaron opening his presents with help from Lilly and Reagan.

The birthday boy patiently waiting for his cake!

Aaron getting ready to blow out his candle.

Aaron playing with his friend Ella. Ella's daddy is in his daddy's squadron and they all also go to our church!

Lilly playing with her second cousins, Cole and Nikki.