Go River Cats

Today was Opening Day and Paul’s first game. I hated to miss it. But I loved that Joe is helping coach and our dear friend Mimi is around to help watch the young ones (our boys are on the same team).

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He came home tired and hungry, which I am learning to seriously appreciate.

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Look at the father and son in matching catcher poses, that is so natural.

DSC_9089By the looks of these other photos

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they all had fun today.

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This one above is classic. Olivine understands that with English or Japanese, not much has to be lost in translation when there are smiles, hugs, and giggles involved. Besides, baseball is only minimally entertaining when there is a captive audience at your side.

Battle

to get out of bed, to get into the bath, to drink enough water (to avoid dehydration), to wear a helmet (protecting little heads in bike crashes), to eat dinner, to let me see the loose tooth, to put the band aid on or take the band aid off, to keep the thermometer under the tongue, to take turns talking at the table, to use a napkin and not the shirt/pants, to put on shoes, hold hands crossing the street, to put the clean laundry away instead of on the floor, to hang up backpacks, and yet it’s all the learning our little family squeezes into one week.

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These are the moments of being refined. Helping to take off the rough edges of wanting to live on impulse and in a selfish way. If there is one grateful take away this week, it is that our family is the community my heart has craved. We practice forgiveness daily and patience is still my weakest point. I am learning to say thank you, even in the midst of a battle (big or small).

Single Shot

is all I have from my whole week.

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These were our colorful leftovers from an evening spent visiting with SF friends. I am trying so hard to stick to my goal of being a better listener. In exchange, it means the photos I snapped at the park turned out blurry because I was in a rush. There were so many more moments of undivided attention, than hiding behind my camera lens or being distracted. Less is more, right?

Extra Time

To run around with cousins

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playing hide and seek

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enjoying the sunshine.

DSC_8906They crowd together and look so similar.

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Around our house, they are happy to have time for lego building

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crafting in bed with colored pencils and washi tape

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story sharing

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and as soon as I am not looking

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the youngest decides to lather herself with vaseline.

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She is proud of how soft and shiny her skin is.

Family

Mike has been in Italy and now his family will soon be reunited. We wanted to see them before they left.
DSC_8892┬áThey were sweet to celebrate Olivine’s birthday with cake and gifts. Her balloon says “hot stuff!”

DSC_8884We hung out in the backyard for hours.

DSC_8880It’s nice to loose track of time and let the kids run free. Paul dug around in the sand, jumped on the trampoline.
DSC_8870Henry ran the battery out on the kid car by going up the steepest part of the path.

DSC_8896Oh and you would of thought someone was going to take off with this baby.

DSC_8887Joe could not get enough. But when you see how smiley she is, well, she is pretty hard to resist.

DSC_8875Our only wish was these little rascals lived closer.

 

 

Drop In

We sometimes make do with just swinging by for a bit.

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We wanted to wish Jake a happy first birthday. We figured staying for under an hour was better than nothing.

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These are good friends who are as busy as the rest of us juggling school, jobs, a family, and life.

DSC_8867So even a few minutes in real life is important.

Opening Game

for the local college team: the Dirtbags.

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We were brave enough to do dinner out and head over at the end of our long week.

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We ran into more friends at the stadium.

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Sometimes we push our kids past exhaustion that they are deliriously happy. So close to the action, lots of cheering, and baseball (the game my family is in love with).

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Savor

each moment (I say aloud and to myself). It is too easy to give into the insecurities and fears. I hold these words and pictures close, knowing the depth of my imperfections.
DSC_8701It has a been a rough work week, following a round of illness, and many tears of frustration. But we are learning to put one foot in front of the next, and not take these sweet moments for granted.

 

Valentine Gifts

We are embracing the holiday.DSC_8795Paul decided to address each of his with a touch of hand written love:
DSC_8796Henry wanted to give out marshmallows shaped as hearts and I found cute stickers on-line to include with a little hot cocoa:

DSC_8833As for teachers, I went with the treats in a jar. A little chapstick, lotion, nail polish, and chocolate. All things I love:

DSC_8835 Paul sewed this in class and gave it to me. My favorite color: Red!

DSC_8838A mini love fest is what we are celebrating.

Last night

We stepped onto the porch to light the sparkler Grammy gave Ollie.

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Those little sparks look like magic and in our hearts we made wishes.