Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Road Trip: Portland

We started our first full day in Portland exploring the downtown area. We walked along the river and then went to Voodoo Doughnut. We arrived mid-morning and only waited in line for about 15 minutes.

Alex really liked the display of spinning doughnuts. We each picked a doughnut and headed outside to eat them.

Alex chose the one with M&M's (Marshall Mathers doughnut) and I went for the Portland Cream doughnut. Of course, John had to try the Voodoo Doll doughnut. Alex has not had many doughnuts in his four years, but he ate it like he eats a cupcake. He goes for the topping and icing, but leaves most of the cake part behind. In some ways, traveling reminds me that there is still a lot of explore in our new "backyard". It turns out that you can get Psycho Donuts in San Jose and Campbell.

We tried to walk off our doughnuts by going to Powell's Books. We had fun browsing the store and I got lost in there a couple of times. Then we checked out the giant elephant statue nearby.

We still were not hungry for lunch, so we walked from the hotel to the Portland Aerial Tram for some cool views of the city.
We could see another volcano in the distance, Mount St. Helen's, from the balcony viewing area at the top.

We were finally hungry and checked out one of the food carts in Portland. The food was good and I was happy to have some pineapple friend rice.

Alex and I started our second full day in Portland with a yummy brunch while the guys slept late.

In the afternoon we headed to the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. My favorite part was touring the SS-581 submarine. Alex liked all of the hands-on activities.
(The visit brought back my memories of COSI, including the over nights there with our Girl Scout troop. I think that this science museum in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the best!)

We enjoyed staying at a hotel downtown by the river. We could see Mt. Hood from our balcony. Alex loved swimming in the indoor pool, especially since it had a large 2 ft. section for us to play. We had a good time in Portland!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Road Trip 2013 - Part 1

Last month John came home with the instructions from his boss that he needed to take a vacation, and we had been discussing ideas for one. We found a week in August that we could both take off from work. For me, it was the week after orientation ended and before the start of the fall semester. We started our road trip on a Sunday afternoon by picking up Uncle Matt (as Alex calls him) in Oakland and then we were on the road.

We spent the first night in Davis and visited friends that I met in graduate school. I was glad that we could reconnect and meet each others' kids. We found a hotel in the area to rest up for our drive to Portland, Oregon, the next day. The next morning, Alex saw a man loading his stuff onto a motorcycle and asked, "Are you Steve Jobs?" The guy looked at us strangely, and we think that he was not from the U.S. based on his accent. We could not help but laugh at Alex's question and the guy did look a bit like the late Steve Jobs in his later years.

We spent Monday driving to Portland with a stop off in Mount Shasta for lunch. When we told Alex that it is a volcano, he was concerned about the hot lava.

We made it to Portland in the evening in time for dinner and to walk around at dusk.

It was a good start to our vacation!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Happy Birthday 10 Minute Craft Dash

Happy First Birthday to the 10 Minute Craft Dash! I have enjoyed participating in a few of these challenges. It stretches my creativity to create cards faster.

Here are the supplies that I set out for my card:

Here is the card that I made in just under 10 minutes:
I have seen some neat cards lately with sponged backgrounds and I want to try more cards with that technique.

This Week

Alex's Soccer Shots class at his school wrapped up on Wednesday. He has a lot of fun and may be a goalie someday.

This week Alex also finished his swimming lessons for the summer. He had a good time and is getting more and more comfortable in the water. Here was our conversation from Wednesday evening after his swim lesson:
Me - "Alex you need to stay on the steps when you are not with your teacher."
Alex- "But Mommy, what if I am READY to swim?"

He picked out some yellow goggles and has been wearing them at the pool and around the house.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Digital Layout

I have been reorganizing my craft supplies and am inspired to do more scrapbooking. To start, I enjoyed making a digital page inspired by the current challenge to use brads from Pixel Maven's Retreat.

Supplies Used:
My Digital Studio from Stampin' Up!
Designer Series Paper/Flirtatious - 3     
Seam Binding Ribbon/Crumb Cake - seam binding (re-colored)     
Seam Binding Ribbon/Crumb Cake - seam binding knot (re-colored)     
Antique Brads - brad 1     
Night of Navy brad (re-colored)     
Melon Mambo brad         
1.25 Square Punch
Card Stock/Wisteria Wonder

I edited my photo and added the frame at Pic Monkey, which is a fun and easy to use website. This was my first time recoloring embellishments in My Digital Studio, which is a neat feature.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Weekend Fun

We had a fun and busy weekend! On Friday night, John and I went to see Shakespeare in the Park and this year's play was Macbeth.

On Saturday, Alex continued to practice riding his bike without training wheels. Mr.Independent wants to do it by himself. In an attempt to keep up with Alex, I bought a bike and love it.

We met friends at the Night Market on Saturday for the Sriracha Fest. Alex provided entertainment with his balloon (the pig from Angry Birds) and mustache.

Alex was good while I was with my "stamping friends" at a Meetup event on Sunday morning. He had some brunch and played on my iPad. I found these pictures afterwards:
Yes, he was wearing an Angry Birds t-shirt and his Mickey ears from Disneyland. We have another busy week ahead with swim lessons for Alex and transfer orientation for me at work.

August Homework

I am working on my August homework for my stamp club. I am getting ready to teach a class again this fall, but I do not think that my students will be as excited about their homework as I am about my stamp club homework. We have another Mojo Monday sketch for inspiration.

I also tried out a color combination from the Pals Paper Arts challenge.

Most supplies for this card are from Stampin' Up!. I ordered more of the Smoky Slate card stock since the two sheets I received in the new color kit did not last long. I really love this shade of gray. I keep making birthday cards for some reason.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

The Kilt

Remember when I posted about Alex being potty trained? Well, it is still not 100% with him. Alex is a kid who does not like to stop what he is doing, and he does not mind being dirty. This has not made potty training an easy process! We are hanging in there and making progress through.

Recently, Alex did run out of extra clothes at school. It happens... The extra summer item they had available in his size was not what he usually wears. It was pink with flowers, and we will call it a "kilt."

I chuckled when I saw Alex in this at pick-up, but it just did not seem right to take his picture. He did not choose to wear it, and I appreciate how one of his teachers explained to the boys about kilts. To all the parents out there who stuggle with potty training, I understand. I have been told that I was not an easy child to potty train either...

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Alex on Two Wheels

John and I started shopping for bikes last weekend. I have not rode a bicycle since I was a teenager, so it was fun to test ride a couple. (I loved my pink and purple Huffy ten speed as a kid!) By the time we got home, Alex wanted to take the training wheels off of his bike.

At first he was still shakey:

He got the hang of it with some practice:

We will probably go to the park this weekend for more practice. Our evenings are busy with swim lessons. I love summer!