Thursday, April 30, 2015

Poem In Your Pocket Day

I work as a Reading Specialist at a Charter school and today I helped us celebrate Poem In Your Pocket Day by standing outside the school greeting students and letting them pick a poem out of a basket to put in their pocket. It was totally fun and I loved doing it.  

This is the poem I currently "have in my pocket...." (If you haven't read Mary Oliver before, she's one of my favorite poets. She and Naomi Shihab Nye just seem to get poetry right).

You Must Change Your Life

Oh do you have time
to linger
for just a little while
out of your busy

and very important day

for the goldfinches
that have gathered
in a field of thistles

for a musical battle,

to see who can sing
the highest note,
or the lowest,

or the most expressive of mirth,

or the most tender?
Their strong, blunt beaks
drink the air

as they strive

not for your sake
and not for mine

and not for the sake of winning

but for sheer delight and gratitude—
believe us, they say,
it is a serious thing

just to be alive

on this fresh morning
in the broken world.
I beg of you,

do not walk by

without pausing
to attend to this
rather ridiculous performance.

It could mean something.

It could mean everything.
It could be what Rilke meant, when he wrote:

You must change your life.

-Mary Oliver

Monday, April 20, 2015

“I don't want to get to the end of my life and find that I have just lived the length of it. I want to have lived the width of it as well.” 

Sunday, April 19, 2015


The Adams Family, circa 1916-17
My grandma Alice Louella, who would be 100 this October if she were still alive, is sitting on her mother Hester's lap (last woman on the right in the front row). Her mother's family was large and her mother was a twin, her twin's name was Lester. I don't know anything about the house behind them, whether it's their actual home or whether they're visiting, but I believe this was likely taken in Minnesota.
I've jumped into the hole that is ancestral research but I love doing it. I join for a month then quit and forget about it for awhile until I start to get curious about something and dive back in. I have two big mysteries yet to solve, ironically one which concerns relatives that lived in Oregon. I keep thinking I can contact someone to help me, or order birth certificates or something. Overall, I have added an astounding amount of information that all began with stuff I gleaned from both grandmas back in the day. I used to love to hear their stories, and wish they were both still alive to tell them to me.  The stories are the things you just can't find when you do your research, so I still try to glean them from those who are left who remember.

Thursday, April 09, 2015

Where I'm At

I want to see this movie. It's finally playing in Portland. 

I want to try a green matcha tea latte.

And.....lastly, I want to get these shoes.

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

How to Have a Swell Spring Break

This is a two inch tire swing on a bush on Russel Street in Portland.

Step one: Hang at home, settling into vacation mode. Eat out, like do breakfast with friends, brunch as a family, maybe get in a date night at a place you've been wanting to try.

Step two: Around about Tuesday, take off on an adventure to somewhere new
. We chose Lincoln City and in particular this fine abode. Isn't it cute? It's dog friendly, too, which means we got to have Molly with us. The beach is her favorite and we had our very own steps to the sand!

Step three: Plan to rendezvous with friends on your getaway. Pictured here are our good friends Mindy, wife of Kyle and Mason brother of Zane. 
You should definitely eat good pizzaplay video gamessee a movie...
...make crazy videos with friends using Video Star, (the new favorite app)....
...take an amazing hike, (my favorite hike) atop Cascade Head. I have taken many wonderful hikes there and you better bet I was reminiscing about them all as I hiked, a favorite being the time we took Jooge up when she was but a babe in a backpack.......

I digress.........back to the hike at hand.......

Kind of fun to have them walking themselves....

Let me zero in here to give you the full vista.......

 Look at this day, just look at it! The higher we hiked the better the view.  It was about a four mile hike round trip and worth each and every step, especially on such a beautiful clear day.

Step four: Eat the food the area is known for. There was lots of seafood eaten here and here but  Blackfish Cafe was probably our favorite, plus they featured a very tasty homemade Ding Dong. 
Step five: Soak in the beauty of the area. Comb the beach for treasures. Definitely read. Definitely start watching Madmen with your husband. Definitely spend certain moments doing absolutely NOTHING and liking it. Maybe swing by the outlet mall on your way out of town, too. You never know, you just might find a new dress for work...
Dig, if you must. Dig lots if you really must. Dig four major holes if you're dig-centric. It's all good.
Check out the locals. These fine fellows adorned the docks in Newport and put on quite a spectacle.

Walk the docks. You just might find a boat named after yourself.
Taste a schnozberry, it tastes like a schnozberry.

Play in creek beds. This creek bed was the site of some serious industriousness for these two.
When you stay at the beach, walk on the beach, too.  Every day. Proof that I took this seriously: on one of my walks a random beach woman said, "You look like you're on a mission." 

Step six: Cherish. Cherish it all: the togetherness, the break from routine, the indulgences, the time away with family. There is truly nothing like it.