Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Multnomah Falls!

I am so proud of my two little men for hiking alll the way up to the top of the 600-foot waterfall. They complained less than the 8-year-old boy that was with his parents hiking behind us. Probably because his mom forgot the granola bars.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Mt St Helens

We learned many things today. Fifty-seven people were killed when Mount St Helens blew its top in 1980. One of them was a revered volcanolgist named David Johnston. Another was a cranky, drunk old jackass who wouldn't listen when the scientists told him to get the bleep out. No one in this area of the country does anything recreational between the months of November and April. But while we were at a nearly deserted visitors center, the clouds parted and we were actually able to view the flattened and hollowed-out center crater. It really was quite something. I'm glad we spent the day driving up I5 and into the forest.

For dinner we ate at the Grilled Cheese Bus. People here don't go hiking or visiting National Parks when it's not actually summer, but they eat outside any old time.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Downtown Portland

Apparently the Trailblazers are in the playoffs and it's a big deal.
Arthur's getting ready for his turn as a J Crew model.
Hippies carrying a mannequin leg.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Our home for the week

If you remember our last house swap, you may recall we had a tiny apartment with no heat and single-pane windows in a great location. This time we kind of have the opposite: A big, beautiful, comfy house in a residential neighborhood sandwiched between an industrial area and a district that made us kind of sad when we drove through it on the way to the house. But it's not too far from downtown and the river. We'll see how the location seems as we explore, but there doesn't seem to be anything real useful within easy walking distance.

Some time on the drive I realized we hadn't packed any Legos or board games for the boys. Thankfully our house, Cindy, had a stash she kept in the basement from when her kids (now in their 30s) were our age. We did make a quick run to Toys R Us for a couple soccer balls and Connect 4.

Saturday, April 16, 2011


On our way to our second house swap. Certainly the most epic drive we've attempted with our munchkins. It was a good day with minimal whining.

It won’t be quite as exciting as our last one: no driving on the wrong side of the road or mysterious coffee ordering problems (aside from the ones I usually have at Starbucks). Presumably the people whose house we’re staying in have a clothes dryer and a dishwasher and other American luxuries. We’re looking forward to spending most of the week in Portland, exploring sites like Mt. St. Helens and the Columbia Gorge and hopefully not getting rained on too much.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Why not to get poison oak

The latest in an occasional series of totally gross photos is thanks to my dear husband, who ran into some of the nasty weed in Mariposa last Friday. He went to the doctor yesterday and she gave him hard drugs (prednisone) and the healing seems to have begun.

I can't seem to find the totally gross picture of my pulled tooth from about 5 years ago. Very disappointing.