Nov 1 2017

halloween 2017

for halloween this year, josephine was a dog trainer; a costume that involved many small props, very few of which actually saw the light of day (or, glow of streetlight, as it were). also, she had decided on a much less, um, vibrant outfit, but came out of her room in this and i think it added to the pizazz that is halloween. ned gamely made his own dog costume and went as her obedient canine (because she’s a good trainer). and tilly was a purple octopus — the amazing octopus skirt was made by a friend and handed down to tilly.

we trick-or-treated with meera’s family. meera made a fantastic emmylou harris (who sings a song about a black dog named bella, hence ned’s costume choices). tilly was VERY excited to be given candy at every house and now there is entirely too much sugar in our house. speaking of, i’m feeling a little snackish…

Oct 8 2017

Mazama, just us

We were supposed to spend Labor Day weekend with Meera’s family in Mazama, but, sadly, they had to travel to a funeral at the last minute. They generously offered us their house for the weekend anyway and we couldn’t pass it up. It was a relaxed, hot weekend with some trail riding, feet cooling, pool swimming (that’s Ned and the girls walking to the community pool in the last photo), orange smoke moon viewing, and family time.

Oct 8 2017

Birthday party 2017

For the eighth year in a row, we had a park birthday party and for the eighth year in a row, we lucked out with the weather. Although this was our closest call yet — the day was windy and chilly despite some sun, and raindrops started to splatter as we were packing up party supplies.

The girls have been very excited about biking this summer. Josephine mastered biking without training wheels and got a new, bigger bike for her birthday. And Tilly figured out that she can ride Josephine’s old “pink, sparkly pedal bike.” She’s smitten. They decided they wanted to have a bike parade for their birthday so we gathered as many friends as we could, set out a bunch of decoration supplies, ate some cake, and did some pedaling. Tilly must have gone around the loop 20 times. Josephine fell off her bike and caught herself with her face right before we had cake (hence the face-hiding in our family photo attempts), but she recovered bravely and even got back on her bike for a bit. She’s got grit!

We are so lucky to have such an amazing community of friends here to celebrate with.

Oct 8 2017

First days

First days of preschool and 2nd grade …

Oct 8 2017


Tilly is three! It’s hard to believe time has flown so fast until you spend a day with her. She is undeniably three. She has energy that KNOWS NO BOUNDS. And the girl needs to do things all. by. her. self. Things she’s never even expressed an interest in before? Suddenly it is imperative that she is the one who does the necessary complicated maneuvering that really requires another foot or two of height to accomplish. She’s hysterically funny and can make me laugh out loud, whether she’s trying to or not. She remembers lines from books and puts them to use at the most appropriate times. (We were at Meera’s birthday party the other night, way past bedtime, and when we opened the door to leave, Tilly turned back to the rest of the guests and said, “It is risky to travel in the dark,” a line from a story we’d read a couple times the day before. Perfectly appropriate, if a little spooky.) Even when I’m exasperated with her, I cannot deny that she embodies joy 98% of the time. She was mad the other night and wailing and she literally galloped across the house. While sobbing. She just can’t hold back.

She loves listening to stories, especially ones about Laura Ingalls Wilder (sound like someone else we know?) and will sit silent and still, listening so carefully. And she is really getting in to imaginative play. Our friend Chris made her an amazing wooden donut shop and Josephine made some tiny oven-bake clay donuts. Tilly totes those little donuts around the house and feeds them, sometimes accompanied by elaborate plot lines, to all the little animals that reside in the house.

When Josephine was Tilly’s age, she was still saying her Ls as Ys (yogs, yisten, cyose). Tilly has worked hard on perfectly pronouncing almost anything. She is just this week starting to work on how she says cereal (one of her favorite things to eat). Until now it was always “see-lee-er.” And we’d eat that for “bres-fixt.” But bresfixt is now, carefully stated, breakfast. And cereal is cereal.

She’s not a super-affectionate kid. She leaves peoples’ offered high-fives hanging and squirms away from hugs unless she’s good and ready to give them. But she’s been running at me full speed after preschool and holding me tightly and saying, “I love you,” and I just can’t get enough of her.

Sep 7 2017

in which red wing was cooler than seattle

the gamble to spend a week in minnesota in august paid off when the weather was lovely. also, there were no bugs. and everyone got to hang out and eat pizza at a farm and visit our favorite farm and laugh and play together. ned and i snuck away for a night in the cities — dinner with friends, a great show, and a night away — for our birthdays. there was a boat ride to lake pepin, a kid-and-grandma show that should win some awards, homemade acorn squirrel sales at the farmers market, chocolate birthday cake. the girls were spoiled by the grandparents, as it should be. the cousins played like they are best buds, which warmed my heart. and i just loved soaking it all in. we’ll be back soon, rw.

Sep 7 2017


josephine, the original and much-documented subject of this here blog, just turned eight. it boggles my mind just a bit. how can she be so old? (and how can i continue to still feel so in over my head as a parent?…) her birthday was the day after we returned from a trip and the day before school started. luckily, she was good with it being a pretty low-key day. she went for a bike ride on her new bike with ned and she and i went to the pet store to scope out the scene for a new hamster. (what are we thinking!?) wildfires burning in this state and oregon were sending ash raining down on seattle and it was too hot and stuffy in the house to bake, so we had root beer floats for a birthday treat after a big sushi dinner.

josephine’s an amazing kid. i can’t believe how lucky i am to get to be her mom.

Jul 24 2017

friends with boat

something better than having your own boat? having friends with a boat who are excited to get out on the water and generously want to share that water time with friends. josephine’s dear friend rose and her family recently bought a boat and they invited us out on the puget sound with them on a 90 degree day. emil and rose and their parents were excellent aquatic hosts.


Jun 27 2017

last day of first grade

Josephine’s first grade year has come to an end. She had a good one overall — made some new friends and strengthened friendships from kindergarten. She learned so many new facts and tricks and ways of thinking about the world. She has struggled, in the last few months, with a bit of anxiety around school. I’m relieved there’s a break from the daily grind and the mornings too full of cajoling and comforting and trying to figure out just how hard to push a nervous and uncomfortable girl. But she did it. She kept on getting up and getting on with the day. I’m proud of her and the progress she’s made. Also, we made it another year without being late to school — something she and I consider a major accomplishment. We have honed our speed-walking skills.

This afternoon we hosted a little ice cream party for friends. The kids piled on the toppings and Hong brought her bubble machine and our backyard got a workout. It was also my friend Jessica’s birthday so we celebrated that, too. (That’s her in the sunglasses and the fetching Moana ring.) Her daughter Nina and Josephine were in the same kindergarten class. Jessica has become a close friend and has made me laugh a thousand times over the past two years. She’s moving across the country next week; it was bittersweet to laugh with her after drop-off this morning for the last time, standing at our little spot near school where we pause and talk before she turns to go one way towards her house and Tilly and I head to the pond for our walk home. I’m going to miss those talks and laughs next year.

May 18 2017

these girls

they get along so well. (until they don’t.) mainly due to their age difference, these two spend a lot of time in the same place doing different things so it’s a joy to watch them become more of a team. josephine likes to make up games for the two of them to play or propose imaginary scenarios to act out. they bond over reading and have deep discussions about moana wherein tilly shares her far-fetched plot lines. josephine is quick to be frustrated when tilly is her impulsive two-year-old self, but is also old enough to get it when tilly is being ridiculously hilarious. and tilly is getting old enough to share jokes with josephine and is beginning to develop a similarly quirky sense of humor.