Monday, December 31, 2007

Events of the last few weeks

Our first Christmas here came with some snow....nothing accumulated though. Santa found us and the kids were happy about that! My brother, his girlfriend, and her three children were up to visit us this past week. Rick's girlfriend's parents live in Portland so they stayed there and Rick drove here on Sunday to visit us and to see where we live. Yesterday we all met (Dan and Cori came too) at OMSI (Oregon museum of science and industry) in Portland. We had a very nice visit and are looking foward to 2008.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Saturday events

One of our daycare parents (Ted) is a professional actor and professor at Western Oregon University. He is acting in the play A Christmas Carol in Portland and gave us five free tickets to see his performance at Portland Center Stage. We brought Dan, Cori, and Courtney with us. Children under age 6 are not allowed in so Alexa and Eli stayed with a friend of ours. The play was excellent!!!!! Ted graciously showed us backstage after the play and Courtney really liked that!

Before the play we drove to Dan and Cori's new apartment in Beaverton and then we all drove together into Portland. Afterwards we stopped at Shari's for dinner. Tony and I have discovered their veggie burgers and have been filling our burger cravings with them. We have changed our diets so drastically that it's hard to eat out. We are now eating about 99.9% vegan and we make sure everything we put in our mouths is all natural and healthy. I've been having fun looking up vegan recipes, especially that children will eat. We are now a vegetarian daycare and we've found a great tofu "chicken nugget" recipe that all the children loved....they have no idea it's not chicken. We all feel so healthy and energetic!!

If anyone is interested, The China Study by Dr. Campbell is an excellent book on health and nutrition.

Bald Man

Tony decided to shave his head last weekend.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Five years ago today

Five years ago today, on Thanksgiving morning, my dad passed away. I am so grateful for the memories I have of my dad and for the amazing relationship we shared.

ear infections

Around 6:00 pm last night Alexa started crying saying that her ear hurt...if she is crying you know she is hurting... the girl does not cry often! Alexa has had a cold for a few days so I was sure it was an ear infection. In the past when this has happened, it was a visit to the doctor, or the ER....just depending on the time of day/night. I had heard of treating ear infections with olive oil/garlic drops before so I made my own. ( I researched a little before doing this). I heated olive oil and fesh garlic in a pot, and when it cooled, I put a few drops in Alexa's ear. I also cut up some garlic and put it on just the inside of her ear as I had read it acts as a natural antibiotic. Around 8:30 she was asleep and SLEPT ALL NIGHT!! She has never slept all night with an ear ache. Wow, I really am happy I tried it, and wished I would have tried it with Eli when he used to have back to back infections.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

farmers market and hiking

We stayed in town this weekend. I got some painting done and Tony cut a hole in a wall...yup, he's still at it! We went to a farmer's market in Amity (about 10 min from Mcminnville) today and then on a nature hike. Another beautiful day here; we LOVE the weather! Courtney has tomorrow off for Veteran's day and then the entire week off for Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Weekend trip/Coast

On the way back from the Redwoods we stopped off at a beach in Brookings, a city about 6 miles north of the California border. We played in the sand and water for awhile before heading back to Kristy and Chad's house. The beach was the best we've seen so far....the pictures speak for themselves!

Weekend trip/Redwoods

We left Friday at 3:30 to drive down to Grant's Pass to visit my cousin and her family. We arrived shortly after 7:30 and hung out. Saturday we set off to visit the Redwoods in California, it was about an hour drive from Grant's Pass. The drive there was amazing....and the Redwoods.....WOW!!!! The trees were HUGE!! We went on a hike and had a picnic. The weather was great.....alomost 70 degrees. What an awesome weekend it was!

Happy Halloween!!!!

It was very nice to not have to drive around this year for trick-or-treating. The kids had loads of fun. Eli kept up with the older ones and was fascinated by all the candy! Now.....we just need to figure out a way to get rid of it all!
Thanks for making the costumes, Eileen.....everyone thought Eli was a little sheriff.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

12th Wedding Anniversary

Today is our 12th wedding anniversary. Dan and Cori came yesterday to watch the kids so Tony and I have some free time. We drove to a state park called Bald Peak, which is at the highest peak of the Chehalem moutains, (coast range mts) elevation 1,629'....we are at 154' here in Mcminnville. We were truly amazed at the views!!! It was a foggy day, but we could still see three moutain peaks (from what I read, on a clear day you can see five). While driving back down, the signs said the grade was at 19%....while driving here thru some Rocky Mt passes., I think the steepest was only 9% grade!! It was steep, to say the least! After spending some time taking in the views we drove to Hillsboro, a suburb of Portland, and stopped at Trader Joe's. Okay, so I'm not as impressed with the store. This Trader Joe's was located in a very upscale part of Hillsboro, so I'm guessing that is the reason prices were so much higher than the one in Eugene. Guess we'll have to visit Dan and Cori more often and stock up at the one in their town.

Courtney, Alexa, and Eli loved having "babysitters" and could not wait for us to leave!!! Danny and Cori treated them to Dairy Queen and the kids just loved it!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Weekend in Eugene

We traveled to Eugene over the weekend to visit Danny and Cori. We took the kids to a science museum, ate at a Hawaiian restaurant, and then the guys watched the children while Cori and I took a few hours (okay, more than a few) to go shopping. Cori introduced me to a grocery store called Trader Joe's and I now have a new love in my life!!!! For those of you who have not heard of this place, ( I think there is one in Milwaukee and my brother has one by him in Madison, but I don't think they are too popular in Wisconsin...not yet, anyway) it is a grocery store that has awesome WHOLESOME food at VERY affordable prices. I found organic sprouted whole grain bread for under $2.00!!!! Our nearest Trader Joe's is in Portland so we will be going there pretty often. As you can tell, I get excited about healthy food. I have been following a vegan diet for over two months now and I can finally say I have found what works for me... I love it!! For so many years my focus has been on losing weight, and for me, that meant following a lower carb diet and very high protein. I have recently shifted my focus to being as healthy as I possibly can be and that is what brought me to this vegan lifestyle. I have been reading a lot of books on health and nutrtion (a huge passion of mine) and I finally understand the connection between diet, health, and disease.... and the power of our choices.

So anyway, check out this store if you get the chance!! Oh, I'll try to add pictures later, I took most pics with Danny's camera and he said he will email them to me...I forgot ours!

Monday, October 1, 2007


A earthquake of 3.6 shook the ground a little here last Monday. This was very close to us, but we didn't feel it. One of our daycare children did though. Wow, better get some earthquake seems strange for Courtney to no longer be practicing tornado drills at school to now practicing earthquake drills!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

projects and colds

We've spent the last two weekends doing projects around the house. I started painting the kitchen/hallway and did more painting on the murral in one of our playrooms. Tony put in french doors in our living room and hung a light fixture. A lot of the daycare children have colds and I started with it last week..I am feeling much better now though. Eli has it, but is recovering now. He scared us the other night though; I heard him crying in the middle of the night and went in his room to find him inhaling and exhaling really loudly, like he was struggling to breathe. Tony started the shower and we brought Eli in the bathroom to breathe in the steam...that helped a little, but not a lot. I then took him outside and his breathing started to normalize again. Seems he gets that with his colds. This happend a different time when we were living in Rhinelander and the doctor there told me it sounded like croup, and then told me ways to help his breathing...steam and cold outside air. I am VERY happy to say Eli is fine now, he just has a stuffy nose.

Happy fall to everyone!! The leaves haven't started turning yet, but we hear it's beautiful when they do. In a couple of weeks we are headed to Grants Pass to visit my cousin (Kristy) and her family. They are only about an hour from California so we are going to go hiking in the redwoods..... we are looking foward to that!!