Friday, May 31, 2013

House cleaners

Noah and Lukas are taking their roles as house cleaners seriously - Noah got the ladder out and dusted above the cabinets and then the two of them had fun cleaning the baseboards in the hallway. All the black marks reminded them of the fun they had playing table tennis with their cousins..

Awe and wonder

Even though the microwave is used almost daily, and the chopper several times a week, the boys are still mesmerized by the technology and the action.. I caught them in the act!

New skill

Bob took Lukas outside after dinner to teach him how to clean windows.. such a valuable and useful skill. He did really well and is now excited about being in charge of cleaning all the windows of the house - yeah, one less task on Mamma's list.

Fine Dining

The dining table is covered with packing paper, the kitchen counter stacked high with things to pack, so the only place to eat is the coffee table. Bob pull out our finest 'linen' and we had a fun dinner complete with some sort of shot and kill game that is played with pencils.... life with boys.. even when there is Prosciutto and Cantalope on the menu.


Since we are moving, we need to eat out the pantry, the cupboards and the freezer. Although, I have been mindful of this for awhile and not made many larger purchase of food, we still had a lot of baking supplies. What to do? What to do? The best solution is holding just starting to bake, and that we did. We made oatmeal cookies, chocolate cookies, lemon coconut cookies, zucchini bread, carrot banana muffins, crusty bread, more oat meal cookies and more lemon cookies. It almost felt like Christmas around here, and we were able to bless many of our friends who stopped by with plates of hot out of the oven cookies.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

The end is near

Early this morning, we hauled out a bunch of things that we have deemed not worthy of traveling with us to MI. Bob handled marketing and put up signs in the neighborhood and the boys handled the cash for our items as well as acting as sales agents for friends. The traffic was a bit slow, Memorial Day weekend, people are at the beach or on a hike, not yard saleing, but all in all, there was less to haul back into the garage. We will give it one more go on Monday, and then the yunque will be freecycled. No it is not spelled incorrectly, this is Monterey after all, we do not have ordinary, boring junk, we have yunque :-)

The boys spent the rest of the day, under the supervision of Dad, cleaning and packing part of the garage.. a few boxes closer to the end.

Bon fire

Bon fires will be one of our special memories from our time here in Monterey. Last night, we gathered with dear friends to burn some more of the wood that is stacked up behind our house. Kids were digging, climbing the retaining wall and roasting marshmallows, adults were sipping libations and chatting and everyone was staying warm gathering around the fire - the kind of evening that would seem to come out of a Living Outside Magazine article.

Not to be outdone..

Noah realized Lukas was spending time on the roof - and he too had to take a sky walk to see the world from a new perspective. Mamma turned away, just waiting with car key in hand, ready to head off to the ER; although she had admonished both boys that there is no time in our schedule for ER visits. Fortunately for all of us, they heeded the warning and we are all safe back on Terra firma.

News flash, Lukas!

This week, a kind ham radio operator donated coax cable to Lukas so that he could upgrade his antennae. Lukas quickly set out to construct a roof top antennae, then refined it, and refined it, and refined it. He was up and down the ladder and on and off the roof more in one afternoon than has has been the entire time we lived here.
As I was hanging out the laundry to dry, I was struck by the strange sound of horse hoofs, only to realize that it was the antennae and its construction that caused the interesting noise.
Lukas invested long hours on his antennae project, and has designed a pretty clever contraption - the only problem is, Lukas, we are moving! The truck comes in less than a week.... Not even the thought of having to take it down a short few days could curb his enthusiasm - oh, if one could bottle this energy and sell it...


Noah received a fabulous puzzle for his birthday, and while Bob and Lukas were in MO, Noah and Mamma spent time piecing together the streets and highways of the great city. Once the first layer was done, there was layer number two. Since this was the first puzzle made by the company, layer one and two were the same - now layer one is historical and layer two is current configuration. Well, even though we just put all of WDC together, it still took time to put together layer two. Noah then happily added in all the various buildings and monuments. After pictures, the puzzle was taken apart and packed up ready for round two once we settle in Detroit. The company promised to send out the historical layer - so we just have to put the puzzle together again!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Happy Birthday!

Today, not yesterday, nor tomorrow, but today is a very special day in our family. Today, the best mother-in-law one could ever ask for, the greatest Grammy two boys could ever imagine and the mother of the most amazing husband a girl could ever wish for is celebrating her birthday.  She is so fabulous she does not even let on when we congratulate her on the wrong day...

May God rain down blessings on you today, pour out His love over you and  may you sense His presence vividly in your life.
Happy Birthday, Barb, Grammy, Mom

Monday, May 20, 2013

Bitter sweet

Lukas had his last piano recital on Sunday. On the one hand he was happy to cut back his practice time, and was relieved to be done, on the other hand, this is his last recital with his fabulous teacher, Mrs Chong. We will miss her and her family as she heads East this summer. It will be hard act to follow for any potential piano teachers in MI.


Bob took the boys to see a B-17 and a B-23 that were on display at our local airport. Aviation is still flowing through this family, and the boys were so excited to tell Mamma all about it afterwards.

A budding photographer

Lukas spent a lot of times at the Carmel Mission looking at and photographing the many beautiful flowers in the garden. Apparently, the apple does not fall far from the tree... now there are two of us capturing flowers...

Field Trip

The missions in California are a large part of the history of this state. We visited the Carmel Mission and really gained an appreciation for the role that missions played. The founder of the Carmel Mission walked from Mexico and when he needed something from the authorities in Mexico he walked back to ask! The ubiquitous fog prevented explorers from finding the San Fransisco Bay, but apparently they had sailed by the Monterey Bay on one of the clear days.
We walked through the main church as well as the garden and ended the tour with an impromptu picnic with friends.
Learning and playing all packaged together, can it get any better?


Never too old for a swing

Lukas and Noah added a swing to the tree house. It has an elaborate pulley system for pulling people up to enter the tree house. It sure looks like Noah is enjoying the ride.

Our garden

Despite a brown thumb our garden is in full bloom. We will really miss this explosion of color, scents and shapes.