Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Aoife's Playhouse

Paul spent the weekend building Aoife a playhouse! It still needs a roof, a porch and a paint job, but we all LOVE it!!

Harvest Party in the Gorge

Every year we head up to Corbett, in the Columbia River Gorge for a big harvest party. Aoife enjoyed some corn and I enjoyed the view of the gorge on the way home!

I like to ride my tricycle, I like to ride my trike


OK, so these aren't very good photos, but if they were better you'd be able to see hundreds of little birds circling around and flying into a chimney. These are Vaux Swifts and every September they spend the month roosting in a chimney in a school in Portland. We went to watch and got a great show this year--several hawks were hanging out and kept swooping in for a swift. When they did, the whole group of swifts would fly off and circle around over and over. It was a great show. As Aoife kept saying, "bye bye birdies." (I think the hawks were saying that as well).

Friday, September 25, 2009


If you need us, we'll be out riding bikes....


If you need us, we'll be out riding bikes....

A new family tradition

We had so much fun mushroom hunting last year, we decided we would do it every fall. We drove out to the Mt. Hood National Forest and took a walk in the woods (a long walk) looking for mushrooms. It was a slow start--once we got about 3 miles in on a logging road, we found a box for a 40" TV, but no mushrooms. It was raining and I was determined to come home with more than wet pant legs, so we kept going, even though Aoife refused to walk in her rain boots (the only shoes we had for her), but at last we found some! We got about a basket full. That night I cooked up some delicious chanterelle and chicken sauce over pasta. It was good, but the hunt was the best part!


A friend called a few weeks ago to say they were moving and I could come pick all the apples off their apple tree. Since the kids I watch go through a jar of applesauce a day, I figure I'd just make my own! We went crazy that night and canned pints and quarts aplenty! It was so fun and so delicious, I've been going to the farmer's markets and buying up pears to make and can pear sauce and pear butter. YUM!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Summer's End

The days are still warm (hot actually) but the nights are starting to get chilly. We harvested our corn last night. I didn't cook it long enough, so it wasn't very good--but watching Aoife shuck the corn was worth it!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

What We did over Summer Vacation

OK, I realize it has been far too long since I've posted to the blog. The official end of summer is this weekend, and I realize I hadn't posted since before summer officially began. But who could find the time when we were so busy with mud-slinging, alligator wrestling, worm eating and the general shenanigans of summer? I've updated with some photos of our summer happenings. And, for what it's worth, I have every intention of being better about posting more regularly, so do check back!

playing in a small pick-up band

Did I mention my daughter is a rock star?

Thank God for plexiglass!!

One of Many Firsts...

Sure, we all remember first smiles, first teeth, first steps, but how many of you out there can recall your first demolition derby? Well, probably most of you, if you've been to one. Who could forgot such a monumental experience? "Uh-Oh cars!"

Who needs indoor plumbing?

Aoife has taken to bathing herself in the rain barrel Paul built. This new habit of hers is really going to save us money!

What's growing in the garden these days?

AOIFE!! She loves to sit in the garden and dig up "wormies!" I have had to stop her from eating said wormies about 50 times this summer. When she finally gave up on eating worms, she turned to pulling out my plants. If only she knew which ones were the weeds, and pulled them instead!

We were so delighted to have our friends Heather and Gabbie home for the summer from their teaching post in Senegal. Aoife is wearing a Senegalese dress and having a ball out in beautiful Sandy, OR!


Our friends moved out to the country and are raising 9 chickens. On our recent trips out to visit, Aoife has been lucky enough to collect the eggs. She couldn't be more delighted with this farm task, and often reminisces about the times she got to "holda eggies."

Oregon Country Fair 2009

Every year we go to the Oregon Country Fair, and this year was no exception. Except we got there the day after flying home from Ireland. Except that we were totally jet lagged. Except that it was the biggest rain storm I'd ever seen. Except that there was so much mud everywhere you couldn't walk two feet without slipping and landing smack down in a giant mud puddle. No matter, we just partied in the van!

An amazing father, a wonderful father-in-law, a devoted and loving grandfather. We miss you, Granda!!