Sunday, November 23, 2008

Catching up...

Well, it has been a while since a post... this is some of what we have been up to.....

For my birthday, Travis arranged for Bayard and me to go riding in the dunes at the coast! What a blast! It was just Bayard, his guide, me, and my guide. My guide had us careening around in the dunes! Many places the dunes were well above my head even on the horse-- it was georgeous and so. much. fun. I could do that all day, everyday. I do miss riding. We would go for a ride around and then meet back up with Bayard and his guide-- they were walking. We saw a male elk and around 3 females with a couple youngsters, a bunch of seals, birds...amazing. It was by far one of the best birthday gifts I have ever recieved.

While Bayard and I rode around, Amelia, Travis, and Woobie played on the beach. This is Amelia flying her first kite. What a beautiful day! It is often gray at the Oregon coast...this was a perfect blue sky day. A fleece was still adviseable, but...a perfect August day!
In July, we spent a weekend at our friend's cabin on Puget Sound...this is Amelia playing down in the mud! A bald eagle was nesting in a tree right next to the cabin...and the barking of the seals woke Bayard and Travis up in the mornings (they slept snuggled in sleeping bags under the stars on the deck)!

This is Amelia perched next to our campsite on Mt Adams. The weekend camping trip was great, except for the bugs! They were making meals of all of us! Yikes! A highlight of the trip was the ice cave! Amazing!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Marathon Man, sunshine, snow, hail, sunshine, rain, sunshine, rain....

Well, Spring is here, sort of. As is Portland Springtime.... the weather keeps you on your toes. Always a good idea to carry a fleece, at least until July. So, what have we been doing? Spending as much time outside as we can!!

We spent this past weekend in Eugene! Yeah! We LOVE Eugene! Why were we there, oh, yeah, Travis ran his first Marathon!!!! Believe it or not, the volunteers in the Eugene Marathon ( wore tie-die shirts. I know, shocking. We had a great time. Check out some of the pictures.... he finished in a bit over 4 hours. Not bad considering he has had bronchitis for the last month!

Friday, April 04, 2008

2 kids, 1 dog, and 3 chickens....

Yes, we have 3 chickens. Just call us Urban Farmers. That is just one of the many exciting events since my last post in NOVEMBER!! Goodness. Time does just melt on by doesn't it? Well, since November we have almost completed a remodel project -- new kitchen (WAHOO!!!), and finishing the basement (the guys dug out 4 dumpster loads of dirt and rock to make the ceilings a decent height, poured a new floor along with some footings for our house that for the last 80 years has NOT HAD FOOTINGS!!!, and framed up and finished a family room, bedroom, bathroom, laundry room, mechanical room, and storage room!) We are on week 12 and only have a few details left.... we are loving the new space and really enjoying our updated kitchen. I would put pictures in, but... I'd rather show off how much Amelia and Bayard have grown! They turned 5 and 2 in February-- WOW! So, here are a few pictures of them.... I will save pictures of the chickens (Pearl, Flossy, and Mambo) for another time....
Perfection can seriously delay a blog, I am going to forgo trying to make this post more interesting, creative, or even visually pleasing... and just POST IT!! So, hope you all enjoy the pictures... keep checking back, I am going to try to get back to a monthly post....
happy spring!!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

One year ago today.....

One year ago today we were on a plane flying to China to meet Chen Fu Wang, soon to be Amelia Fu Wang Johnson. The pictures below are of Amelia's referral picture (the first picture we got of her before we went to China - she was about 4 months old there), the next pictures are of Amelia in October while we were in Florida.) What a difference a year and a family make!

In some ways it is hard to believe it was an entire year ago. In other ways it seems like a lifetime ago. Lots of changes in the past year.... we grew from a happy family of 3 to a complete family of 4, Bayard gained a sister and became a big brother, we stopped working our family around my job and started working my job around our family when I took the leap to private practice ( and left my "regular" job... wow, in writing that just doesn't seem like that much. Living it feels much different! Life feels different than it did. Richer. The biggest changes are in Amelia....

We met a confused, sad, mad, grieving, cautious, tenatious, strong baby in China. That baby has grown into a confident, silly, funny, bright, joyful, little girl who continues to show that same tenacity and strength in everything she does! She is such a part of the fabric of our family that it is difficult to imagine us without her. She asks for a hug and then just leaps into your arms and wraps herself around you with a giggle that seems to come from her whole body as she says "Mommy!" and just today "yuv you!" I love you too Amelia.

Monday, November 5th, we will celebrate Family Day, as that is the anniversary of the day we gained a daugter and a sister, and Amelia gained a mom, a dad, and a brother. That long, almost 2 year, wait was worth every second and then some.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007


Well, we are well into our 2 month sabbatical. For those of you who are not aware, Travis has had Sept and Oct off -- a perk of reaching 7 years at Intel. We spent Sept hanging out at home, taking some little trips and just enjoying some extended family down time. Then, we headed off to Florida Oct 2 for some extended beach time! So, here we are, looking out at the warm (85 and sunny!!) ocean from Nana and Grandpa's beach condo -- yeah, times are tough.
Our friends the Thurmonds came down from Atlanta to see us for a few days--- they have 2 kids, Jack (4) and Ella (2). Jack and Bayard had fun "riding the waves" --

Bayard has discovered boogie boarding and is LOVING the ocean! The warm florida water and sunny blue skies have been perfect for playing on the beach every day. Amelia has warmed up to the idea of the water-- she really enjoys when the tide is out and the "rivers" appear on the beach! We will try to put some video of that on you-tube -- check back in for that!

We went to St Augustine (a less than an hour drive from here) this week and explored the old Fort that is there as well as the Alligator Farm-- WHOA! The Alligator farm was fantastic!
Alligators, Crocodiles, Turtles, and birds and primates from all over the world! If you are ever in St Augustine, make sure you put this attraction on your list!

Today, we went to an adventure park ... mini-golf, and go-carts... what could be more fun?

Travis, Bayard, and Grandpa are heading to the Jaguars game on Sunday
and then we are heading out to Grandpa and Nana's farm in Madison, Florida next week for a few days of tractor riding, porch naps, and just good ol' hanging out on the farm.

That is is for now... the beach is calling.....

Sunday, September 16, 2007

September already!!

Time does fly, particularly in the summer! Fall weather has hit Portland, it is cool and damp outside. Enjoyable really. Travis started his sabbatical at the beginning of the month and we have been enjoying some nice family hang out time. He is off work until the end of October! Wahoo!! We head to Florida for some extended family and friends hang out time as well as a jaunt over to Disney.... Bayard is beside himself with excitement about that upcoming adventure! We are all looking forward to some beach time and more relaxing....

Well, for some reason the blog won't let me put anymore pictures up, so, I am off for now. More to come!

We had some excitement last weekend when Amelia had her first ER visit... she has decided that she no longer wants to go down the stairs "feet first" or backwards, but only wants to tackle the stairs big girl style!! Natural consequences.... a tumble down the basement stairs with the metal edges on them equal a split lip needing 3 stitches!! OUCH!! We have a wonderful children's ER close by -- we were actually in and out of there in one hour!! Unheard of really. She was a trooper. The stitches are out and she has a tiny scar which will likely fade and leave only the story to tell. Big brother was worried about her and was incredibly helpful and empathetic -- they are pretty cute together.
The pictures are just some random ones from the summer. Both kids enjoy some dress up....capes, wizard garb, cowboy/girl, girly dresses, hats of all kinds, etc. Amelia LOVES to change her clothes and then say "mirror, mirror" and go twirl around in front of the mirror and check herself out!! Funny! They spent about 45 minutes upstairs this morning with a clothes basket pretending they were driving in a boat on some adventure. Amelia loves to do whatever Bayard is doing and he is generally really patient with her and finds a way to incorporate her into what he is doing. He really enjoys when she will play with him in one of his imaginary adventure scenarios, of which there are MANY!!!! It is fun to see them getting to be friends. Bayard said the other day "Mom, I think I love Amelia more than anyone else in the family. I just really really love her." And you can see it in the way he treats her. They still have thier moments, but, for the most part, it is great. And it is fun to think of how that relationship will grow as they get older. Good stuff.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Camping, pirates, and fond farewells....

At the beginning of this month, we went camping at the Oregon coast with our friends the Steiner-Beenes. They have 2 kids, Max (5) and Beckett (3). We were celebrating both Max's 5th birthday as well as getting a chance to hang out before their family moves to China for 2 years! WOW! Well, we had a great time... and Wendy took some FANTASTIC pictures!! Here are just a few.....

The boys found a big tree that had been washed up on shore... it was quickly turned into a pirate ship and a flag was placed on it thanks to Wendy's forethought and creativity (she brought a Sharpie and a pillowcase for just that purpose!)...

The weather can be unpredictable here at the coast. Even in summer, a nice warm fleece comes in handy. We were so lucky. The sand was warm, the sun was shining through an amazingly blue sky, and the wind was blowing just enough to keep the kite up and the pirate flag flying. Amelia played the role of "monster" as in "oh, no, here comes the monster to knock down the castle!" She worked to keep up with the boys, but was also happy to make her own adventures.
We had a wonderfully relaxing weekend just hanging out. Farewell Steiner-Beenes! We will miss you!