Friday, April 26, 2013

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Tryon Creek State Park

We have had Popo and Bompy visiting again this week, for three days, and have had a wonderful time as always. We went on a hike in Forest Park with some new friends of ours, visited Tryon Creek State Park for the first time, and spent this morning at Washington Park playground and this afternoon getting ice cream at Salt & Straw.  Mom and I saw a performance of the Oregon Ballet Theatre on Wednesday night, which was really fun and interesting and dynamic, and Steve and I had a date night tonight - we returned to Meriwether's for dinner.  And I got in a solo hike in Forest Park, which I really enjoyed. All in all, a wonderful and busy visit.

These pictures are all from Tryon Creek. More pics to come!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge

We have had a lovely and busy weekend - the downtown farmers market, Mt. Tabor, and a meetup at the Belmont St. food cart pod yesterday, and today a walk through the Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge, followed by lunch at Lauretta Jean's pie shop.

We saw a wide variety of birds at Oaks Bottom - ospreys, red-winged blackbirds, blue herons, ducks, along with many others that I can't identify. There was one tiny one with a bright pink throat that was very cool. It was a really nice little walk in a very different ecosystem than the Forest Park woods that we usually hike through.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

various adventures around town

The children and I have continued to explore Portland and enjoy the city. This past week, we went to four different parks and playgrounds in various neighborhoods - Wallace Park, Laurelhurst Park, Washington Park, and Gabriel Park. One thing we've noticed is the strange dearth of sandboxes here in Portland - in NY, most playgrounds had sandboxes or sand under the whole play structure. Here, it's mostly wood chips, and both Seb and Liesl miss digging around. And we did some short hikes at the Hoyt Arboretum, at the Audubon Society, and up to Pittock mansion.

Towards the end of the week, the weather turned a bit cold and rainy again, so we returned to some favorite indoor playspaces - the Children's Museum, the Southwest Community Center open gym, and an art class for toddlers.

Friday, April 19, 2013

potty training

We bought Liesl underwear some time ago, when she first expressed an interest in wearing it. But it turned out that while she loved her pink and purple stars and flowers, she didn't actually have any interest in peeing on the potty. So she'd refuse to go and have an accident five minutes later. Four times in a morning. We gave up.

But then, two weeks ago, she saw an Elmo potty book at the grocery store and asked for it. There's a little story about Elmo learning, and (most importantly) a chart with Sesame Street stickers. We bought it, read the story, and voila!! She's been wearing underwear every day and successfully doing her thing - the occasional accident, but mostly she's dry.

Apparently she just needed the proper narrative structure and motivation. :)

Thursday, April 18, 2013


One of the things I was really excited about when we moved to Oregon was the opportunity to take the kids camping in some of the gorgeous state parks around here. We bought a new, family-sized tent, and kid-sized sleeping bags, and I'm busily making camping reservations for various campgrounds for various weekends...  So excited to take them out. I have such terrific memories of camping with my parents and brother as a child - in Jasper and Banff, and across B.C., and then down into the States along the spine of the Rockies - I love the feeling of waking up outside - the sound of the birds, the smell of outdoors, the quality of light. And cooking marshmallows over the fire, and poking around in the woods and streams. I can't wait.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013