Thursday, June 28, 2012


Outside my office window is a flower bed. It has been there for a few years and I quite like it. It is a perennial bed and I think this year I am going to plant some bulbs in it in the fall. Today a new employee was weeding the flowerbed. I saw him weeding and I saw him leaving. When he was gone I looked at the bed and saw this:

I am hoping he was called away on some groundkeeping emergency and not that he thinks the weeding is done.

Thursday Thirteen: 13 things that make me happy

Thirteen things that make me happy:
1. Listening to my sons playing and laughing together - or singing.

2. Reading
3. Coaching my sons soccer team

4. A cool breeze on a warm summer day
5. Sunshine
6. Flying kites
7. Taking photographs
8. Making lists of things to do and checking them off when they are completed (The checking off part makes me particularly happy!)
9. Making crafty things - (Pinterest has renewed my joy in this!)
10. Spending time with my mom
11. Pruning
12. Fixing things with my sons
13. Our pets

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Teenage lesbians shot in Texas

I am absolutely devastated to read in the news today about two girls shot in Texas.
One of the girls was killed and the other left in serious condition. I honestly do not have any words.
Why, why why, is there so much hatred in the world?

You can link to the story here:

Friday, June 22, 2012


I love attending the local powwow each year. As the boys get older they can appreciate it more. I wish we could find a way for them to learn the drums and singing.
Here are some photos from this years event.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Max graduates

It is so hard to believe my baby boy, my first born, has graduated from kindergarten.
He amazes me every day with the things he learns and just how grown up he is. Grade one here he comes!
Today in the graduation ceremony h e sang his heart out and did all the actions to the songs. I remember when we first went to see him in stepping forward, his aide had to sit behind him and hold his arms to do the actions and he didn't sing a word of the song. Last night I was in the van with him and he was singing away and telling me what song they were performing today (Love in my family).
Yesterday afternoon we went and got him a haircut and he sat so well in the chair. His head did keep drifting to the right, but he was GREAT. In so many ways he is outgrowing his need to have us close and hold his hand. I love watching him grow, but I sure do miss having him depend on me so much.

 After his graduation with the family.

 Waiting in line to get his certificate.

 Singing Love in my Family.
 Certificate in hand!
With mom at the school entrance. Last day and first day!

Max graduates from kindergarten

Today Max graduated from kindergarten. We took a photo outside with Shel holding a photo of them in the same spot from the first day of school. We got the idea from pinterest and like it a LOT!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Maxies favorite song

Shel and I had to go this morning to the school for the final meeting with the teacher for the year.

They put together this neat little booklet that had things like Max's handprint, a note to Max from all the teachers and Aides, and some photos.

Each kid wrote their name and filled out a little blurb about what their favorite color was, who their friends were, what they wanted to be whn they grew up, favorite song, etc.

I looked through the book and had to laugh.

All the kids put as favorite song things like, "itsy bitsy spider, an elmo song, the alphabet song - Maxies was...... " I like to move it move it!"

That kid makes me laugh.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Back entrance

While mom was here we had plans for quite a few things and the weather was not supportive of our endeavours. It rained and rained and RAINED. We had two "big" things we wanted to get done - one was to paint the barn and the other was to do the back entrance. Earlier this year we needed to replace the doors (front and back) on the house. Where the back door was we could not fit a regular sized door and so we were stuck with one of two options. One was to special order a smaller door and the other was to move the entrance from the east side of the back porch to the south side of the back porch. Since we have had such difficulty moving anything in and out of the house because of odd sized doors we opted for number two - to put in a regular door but move it to the south side. So we moved the door, but then we were coming in and out of the house into what used to be a flower bed and we were tracking mud in and out. So mom and I decided to fix it.

I found an idea on pinterest that I LOVED and showed the photo to mom. She loved it also and so we did it!

We had to begin by removing all of the old soil. We dug all the way to the bottom and took it in the wagon (because of course the wheelbarrow had a flat tire).

We have determined that every time we begin a project we run into all kinds of problems and so what begins as a one stage project ends up being a ten stage project!

We cut the wood from our own wood pile. We had to wait until the wood was dry so we carried logs into the quonset to dry out. Then we got the chainsaw up and running and cut the logs. It is heavy work to cut the logs and so mom and I were taking turns with the chainsaw. After we cut what we had in the quonset we went to the log pile to see if we had anything there we could use. We had a couple of super logs to use and so we started to cut right at the pile. Mom was holding a log for me and then I was holding the log for her. In one of our trade offs mom went to hold the log for me and fell into the wood pile! Oh we laughed and laughed.

We got the logs cut and laid them out. As we were digging out the old soil we realized that the edge piece of wood was rotted right through so we needed to find a new edge piece and stake it into the ground.

We found a new edge piece and staked it in.

Then we brought sand (from the boys said pile and using the red wagon) and we filled the spot with sand. Then we had to put in each log and level them all. My log cutting is not perfectly even so some of this took some creativity!

We had cement hand prints from us and the boys that we used as two of the logs. We left a spot against one wall of the house where Shel would like to build a bench so that still needs to be done. After we got all the logs in and leveled we used rock from the driveway to put between the logs.

We also filled two baskets with flowers and hung them on the wall on either side of the door - I thought I had a photo of that but I apparently need to find where I put it!

Friday, June 15, 2012

outside my window - JUNE

Outside my window... it is overcast AGAIN and looks like this afternoon it will rain. I am ready for some sunny days.

I am thankful for... The time this last week I was able to spend with my mom. We had fun as we always do and we got a lot of things done on our list. I miss her already.

From the kitchen... While mom was here we made a lot of things. Chicken pasties for me to freeze so I can bring them for lunches at work, samosas, vinegar pudding, a dessert in the dutch oven. We cooked a LOT!
I am wearing... my birkenstocks ! I need to paint my toenails and get new birks as these ones are on their last legs, but I will wear them until I cannot wear them any longer. I LOVE summer and my birkenstocks!
I am creating...some thank-you gifts for school teachers, classroom aides and the bus driver. Max has two more days of school and then is off for the summer.

I am reading... The Keeper of Lost Causes by Jussi Adler-Olsen
I am hoping... to fix some broken windows in the barn.
I am hearing... Hedley - Kiss You Inside Out.
Around the house... my mom has come and gone and Shel's mom is here for the rest of the summer. The boys love the company and the house will be quiet come September!
One of my favorite things... spending time with my mom.

Here is a picture I am sharing...  Mom and Max watering the flowers we just planted.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

visit from mom

My mom is visiting this week and I am in HEAVEN. I absolutely LOVE spending time with my mom. One of the things we like to do the most is to make a list and check things off it. We have projects galore to work on. If only she lived closer we would be project maniacs.
If my blog is lacking is posts this week it is because I am working outside with my mom. Maybe this year I will be better about posting some of the things we work on.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Summer time bike riding

The boys absolutely LOVE their bikes. We took the bikes to the river on Sunday and after making drums we went for a ride. Then when we got home they wanted to ride again. Max can ride without training wheels but he likes to have them on so he can "turn sharp corners". As he was riding yesterday one fell right off and he kept going without even noticing! Of course as soon as he noticed it was all about fixing it. I think the only thing he likes more than riding is fixing!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Making Drums

We had an opportunity yesterday to take the boys and have an elder teach them how to make a drum. It was a very informative process which we loved and the boys both LOVE their drums. Now we just need to find someone to teach them native drumming!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

things that make you go "hmn"

In the news reports I get everyday there is a report this week about the Idaho Liquor Commission banning a vodka because of it's name. The Commission write a letter to the brewers of the vodka and stated in the letter that the ban was because an important segment of the population in Idaho would be offended by the name.
The name of the vodka.... "Five Wives".
Who knew polygamists were a significant part of the alcohol consuming population in Idaho?!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Blogging for LGBT families

It's blogging for LGBT families - and we are one!!!

It amazes me to realize that Shel and I have been together for more than fifteen years AND that we have been parenting for almost SIX of those years! Where has the time gone? From the moment we became a couple we knew we wanted to have children. We had no idea how this was going to be possible, but we knew we wanted to parent. There were some obstacles to having "natural" children, and we DID try, but it was not meant to be.

I LOVE being a parent. I LOVE my sons. I LOVE doing all the things that are considered just the normal things that all families of all kinds do every day in every part of the world.

The boys are growing up SO fast. it is hard to believe my teeny tiny little boy, only four pounds when he came to us at a day old is going to be FOUR already. He's a bike riding, soccer playing, "big boy" now. He has a heart of gold and is still so excited to see me when I come home from work every day and still blows kisses to me when I leave in the morning. He talks every day about how big he is, how grown he is, and although I am excited for all the new things he is learning and doing, I miss the days he fit into my arms AND STAYED THERE!

And my Miracle Max. The boy who everyone said "couldn't". Couldn't hear, couldn't swallow, Couldn't sleep, Couldn't do anything - possibly ever. What an amazing boy he is. He is my heart.

It was three years ago that he was non-verbal and deaf. He is the most determined person I know. When he couldn't crawl he was frustrated that he couldn't get around and worked at it until he could. Then he was frustrated that he couldn't walk and so he did. Last summer his training wheels were broken and I needed to get a part for his bike in town, but he was frustrated he couldn't ride for the day so he picked up his bike and rode. People STILL say "he can't" and he just does it anyway!

On this day of blogging for LGBT families, I have to say I am grateful. Grateful for my spouse and my sons. Grateful for my home, my pets, my parents and my siblings. Grateful for the school teachers that have Max make two things for mothers day. Grateful for my friends. Grateful to live in a country where we can be legally married and have our sons share our family name (even though Max complains it is the longest name in his class that he has to write out!) Grateful for a life ahead of us full of laughter, growth, milestones and even grateful for the bad times - because all of it is a part of being a family.