Friday, December 26, 2008

New daycare

Due to the economic crisis, we have been forced to find alternative daycare......



Monday, December 15, 2008

Our Christmas Blog


A flashback photo

The ducks go by, quack quack quack, things go up and things go down but the world goes around and around. Christmas is starting to feel pretty familiar and even routine. After all we’ve had 30-something of them. YET! It continues to serve as a yearly marker to look at the past and anticipate the future as well as to celebrate the present or presents and most of all Jesus’ presence.

This, however, has by no means been a hum drum and forgettable year. We will all remember this time for various reasons. And I can say somewhat happily that Laura, Owen and I are not so insulated from what is going on economically in our country and world.

We moved to Kalispell, Montana this year, which, coming from the cusp of California feels like moving back in time a couple of decades. There are some pluses and minuses to that. But one of my favorite things about the time warp is more simple communication styles, and more community wide acceptance if not adherence to the Bible (and hunting). There are many interests here for Owen, Laura and myself. I’ve gotten in on lots of racquetball, Laura is getting into the gym to exercise (and avoiding grizzlies) and she loves her job and Owen is meeting tons of competing rug rats. It’s funny watching Owen in a large group of static electricity generators. He looks like a kid that has been surrounded by a 1000 bowls of ice cream. In his state of comatose euphoria he is physically and cognitively paralyzed. He seems to move in slow motion if at all, his speech slows down and occasionally he focuses enough to do a turbo crawl to the next kid or toy. He doesn’t like sitting around the house and loves to be out and about. I know what you’re thinking...sounds like Nick is projecting. We’ll if you’re thinking that you’re probably wrong, Laura would agree that he is social and antsy to be on the go..

So, while there are many lessons I’ve learned from my dogs, slowly but surely Owen is providing lessons as well. The most interesting lesson so far to me is that Owen does somewhere between little and no editing of his thoughts and feelings. He seems to wear his wants and hates on his sleeve...in fact there is no guesswork to his happiness, sadness or madness. The thing I find funny about this is that the only real difference between Owen and myself and other adults is the amount of editing that happens. I look at myself and those around me as if we’re infants and translate what they’re communicating to googooing, cooing, crying or screeching with back arched. The world gets pretty funny and pretty simple with this perspective.

Laura loves her work. It is an idyllic work environment relationally. She works generally two days a week at Whitefish Animal Hospital. She’s still fixing dogs and cats. An example of the throw back here versus California is that people generally respect that when a veterinarian is on call they are not sitting in the office and often apologize for disrupting their personal life. Simply the recognition is somehow encouraging.

Cerah and Mica have a smaller universe now. We put in an invisible fence and they prefer to stay in the yard rather then get inexplicably zapped. No more wandering the neighborhood searching for coyotes to play with, or carcasses to cuddle with.

You can catch Owen’s development and cuteness and “squawk-iness” on this blog so I don’t need to say anymore about him.

And o yes, the reason for this letter.is..the season, Christmas. We continue to feel that Jesus is giving us at least a measured amount of discernment and wisdom and some blessing to boot. We were able to sell the house in Tahoe and have bought a smaller home north west of Kalispell. Going through the move has eliminated a lot of cursory distractions to our marriage and family. The result has been more reliance on one another for friendship and function.

All in all it has been a good year for us, moving from complexity and consumption towards simplicity and contentment. Note, this is the direction, we have not seemed to arrive at any particular destination just yet.

Take care and feel free to drop us a line. We love you all and miss you.

Nick, Laura, Owen, Cerah Wooly Mammoth, and Mica Shaniqua Gila Monster Rock Star.

Birthday Video

Owen turns one!

It's hard to believe he's a year old! We celebrated with a cupcake, and opened gifts from family. Stayed indoors since it has been zero degrees and below here. He had a rough week, starting with pink eye, then getting the flu shot, spiking a fever and cutting four teeth at once. It's hard being one year old.


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Thanksgiving kitchen crew

Cousins

We had a great Thanksgiving with Josh, Christy, Hannah and Matthew.

Floor surfing

Owen is showing good risk assessment skills by choosing to stand in the center of his pillow.

Friday, November 7, 2008

The latest photos

The front of our house, the new floors, and Owen in various halloween costumes. We went to a "harvest festival" at the church where there were various games set up. Since Nick was manning the bowling games, Owen the dragon crawled around on the floor, helping other children get strikes but knocking over the pins.





More random photos





More pictures of our visit with Dad and Kim

snow hiking




We hiked up columbia mountain which usually has a great valley view, and all we saw was the cloud we were standing in.

Visit with Dad and Kim

We had a great time here with Dad and Kim aside from the stomach flu.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Iris cyst


For you medical and dog people, thought this might interest you. Cerah started occasionally running into random things (like a table leg). So I looked at her eyes, she has an iris cyst and two focal cataracts that are likely causing blind spots. I e-mailed pictures to the opthalmologist who said these are likely congenital and don't progress in goldens. The cyst usually floats around the anterior chamber of the eye, then attaches somewhere, it looks attached now, and is probably why she's started acting like she has a blind spot.
Anyway, here is a picture of it I thought was kind of interesting.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

house clips

Here are some clips of the new house, we haven't moved in yet, still painting and putting in floors, will hopefully move in the next two weeks.

Bryan's visit

Bryan came to visit last week. It was nice to have a familiar Tahoe face in Montana.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Naptime jailbird blues

This naptime didn't go so well......

Owen Crawling

I've been delinquent in getting videos on the blog, Owen started crawling a couple weeks ago, and now that he is on the move, it's not so easy to get pictures of him...

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Oh, the doggies

This blog is a tribute to our precious pookies. We almost lost one this weekend, and it made me think how much I am glad to have them (even though our relationship is strained at times:).
Mica and Cerah were wrestling like they always do, and Nick and I were sitting about five feet away. We noticed that the wrestling seemed to get more aggressive, like they were seriously attacking eachother. They have done this before, so we told them to knock it off. Then we heard Mica gasping for each breath like she was breathing through a straw.
The ten seconds it took us to get her collar unclipped seemed like forever. Cerah's tooth had snagged the cloth on Mica's collar and the more they struggled to free it the tighter it choked on Mica.
Once we got the collar unclipped, Mica's gums were ghost white and shocky. It took a good ten minutes for her color to come back.
I had heard of this happening, and dogs even dying from it, but thought "what are the chances?"
Well, our dogs won't be wearing their collars anymore unless we are out. They wrestle all the time, and often not within our sight, if we hadn't been sitting there, it could have been bad.
So note to self and anyone else who has dogs that like to wrestle. Use the clipping collars, and not the ones like belt buckles. We would have never gotten that kind of collar off in time.....
So I decided to go through all my pictures and pick out my favorite doggy pictures (with some appearances by Asher, Nick and Owen), since Owen gets all the attention on this blog, I guess I need to make up for it.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Great Grandma Quesenberry

Or "mamaw" as she is to me. She always sang lots of songs to us grandkids while we were growing up. She lived with us for several years, and I have many great memories with her. She still remembers the words to her songs. It was fun getting all the great grandkids to see her in Florida.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

High Line Trail

We took our first hike in Glacier National Park last weekend. Owen slept the whole way except when we stopped to eat. We saw lots of wildlife but thankfully no bears.
The mountain goats, big horn sheep and deer were not afraid of people.

Owen's latest

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Florida 2008

Owen and I went to Florida last month for a family reunion. Owen got to meet all his cousins, great aunts and uncles, second cousins, and great grandmother Quesenberry.
It was a lot of fun, and Owen really liked floating in the pool.
Meanwhile on the home front, our Tahoe house sold. Thanks for everyone's prayers. That is a huge financial relief for us. And it helps us feel like we can move forward here in Montana.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Latest photos

We've done a few more hikes, and run into more wildlife. We were almost to the end of our hike, and had the peak in site, when a family of mountain goats (5 adults and two babies) strolled down the trail, and weren't interested in letting us pass. We had to turn around and leave. Unfortunately, we didn't take the time to get any pictures of them. But here are some pictures of us hiking, riding the gondola down after a hike, and trying to get Owen to eat, which he still isn't all that interested in.

Battle of the strong wills

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Great Grandpa Porter

This is Owen's great grandfather on my side (Laura). Maybe some similarity....

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Grandma Porter's Visit

We had a great time with my mom here. We took our first drive into Glacier national park, and spotted a moose.
Owen is sitting well now, and tasting his toes often.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

videos


Montana update

Despite the fenced in yard, our lovely dogs always add excitement to my day. I just got back from picking them up from a completely different neighborhood where they were taking a swim in a very nice man's pool. They had dug under the fence to get out of our yard.

I've been in Montana for a month now, we've picked a church that we really like, it is a very young church in two ways: it was just planted about a year ago, and about 70% of the people are younger than us, including the pastor. We actually feel old.
I like my job, the people are great to work with, and when clients call after hours, they start out by saying "I'm sorry to bother you". That never happened before:)
I am liking my schedule of working two days a week, and Owen absolutely LOVES his daycare. I believe he inherited his father's social addiction.

Anyway....Owen is learning some new tricks, sitting for extended periods of time, and eating some food, though he is not very excited about the food.


Saturday, May 31, 2008

Josh vs. Opie

This is a video from our trip home in February

cousin Matthew the buckle master

We visited family in Seattle this weekend, and Owen met his big cousin Matthew, and his new little cousin Hannah.


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

On to Montana

Well, we are all finally here in Montana, I have lots of pictures and video of the trip, but until I figure out how to post video, you'll have to just enjoy the pictures.

Nick, and the expert packing crew, actually fit all of our worldly possessions into a 27 foot u-haul, and the caravan pulled out.
Eastern Nevada, and Idaho were pretty much barren land, not too exciting, but once we were in Montana, it was beautiful.

Owen was great for the trip, but once we arrived here, my good sleeper went somewhere else. It's very hot and humid here, much to our suprise, Owen has been going pantless and shoeless, true hillbilly.


Our rental house is actually quite functional. In beautiful 1970's decor, it has a large kitchen, and a large basement for storage. The dog's think the yard is palatial and have only escaped once for a jaunt down to the dairy queen.


Downtown Whitefish is in walking distance along with the city beach and the library.


Packing up and heading out...




saying goodbye to Tahoe






Everything we own in one big truck



Somewhere in Idaho



Does life exist outside this chair??????




Rome was the only stop in the middle of nowhere




Mica envisioning herself as a long haul trucker



Into Montana





Along the flathead lake







Our new abode in Whitefish Montana









Last Week in Tahoe


During our last week in Tahoe, summer came in full force. It made it harder to leave, but we spent our week doing some of my favorite things, and visiting with friends.





Hiking up Tahoe Mountain
Visiting Fallen Leaf Falls
Walking out to the beach



Hiking down to Emeral Bay with Leila, Judah, and Judy.






We went to Zephyr Cove to let the dogs have a swim....