November 7, 2017

That number has come up a few times this year. The oldest child reached that age, rather unimaginable. The temperature dipped that low a few days ago, brrrrr. And yesterday marked 30 years at my most recent job.

Does that mean I can stop listing pizza cook in 1976 on my resume?

In addition to the lovely certificate, suitable for framing, there is a gift certificate. 

And we’re back on the job in the morning. Focused on making it to 35.

Speaking of work. I wish we would have a bring your kids to work day again. I would have Carl bring Dean. Backhoe digger and big valve. He would love it. 

Nice to Nasty

November 5, 2017

Making costumes for Halloween in Seattle is always interesting, because you really need to think of the waterproof considerations. 2017 was the first Halloween since 2006 where it did not rain. And we had more trick-or-treaters than we have had in a while. Not an immense number, but enough to keep us entertained as we watched Game 6 of the World Series. And the kids were entertained when a spider hanging out below our porch light caught and then wrapped up a moth.


And it was an entertaining World Series. Kudos to Houston. Many may have felt that Game 7 was a bit of a let-down for excitement, but I am sure the Houston fans were happy for a game that was not quite so exciting.

And the next day (Thursday) the Seattle Sounders were playing to stay in the MSL playoffs. We did not attend, choosing to not tempt the weather gods, who did make the fans manage with a cold rain and temps in the 30s. Success against the Vancouver Whitecaps. Games today will determine their next opponent, although that game won’t occur for a few weeks. [Countries that are still in the World Cup hunt will have games in the interval. Not the USA however.]


And following that it snowed on Friday. Most of the day at work, although none stuck to the roads.20171103_081336

Saturday was equally cold, but there was a morning respite from precipitation. We took full advantage for a bundled up walk to and around Green Lake. (It was really a shopping trip, but that was only before the last of the five or so miles.) The Bubble Man was out at Green Lake on a pier. It was an absolutely lovely display.

My favorite for sereneness (I should make this a screen saver).20171104_114849

Bubble Man at work.20171104_114910

A slight breeze blew these directly towards us.

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October 31, 2017

It is suitably foggy this morning for Halloween. The area has settled into a pattern of foggy, misty mornings that eventually give way to sunny afternoons. Very pleasant. (I think that will change tomorrow.) 

Sunday was the same as we joined Sagan’s family for the purple stride walk against pancreatic cancer. A lovely walk. Carl and I lingered to chat with Sagan’s grandfather, who was not walking, and were the absolute last people on the path. We did eventually catch up with our group and caught glimpses of a few other friends. 

Sagan’s extended family

Everybody must wear glasses

Sunday evening  (along with several others) we devoted to the World Series. Sunday especially, required devotion, durability, and it really helped to be in the Pacific time zone. The game went over 5 hours. It was after 1 a.m. on the east coast when it ended.

Game 6 is tonight, gathering at our house. We watch a slightly delayed game, so we all have time to get home from work. Tonight’s dinner will be chili ala Jim. Mmmmm.

Crow about it

October 24, 2017

Our latest decorations. 

We don’t go in big for store bought Halloween decorations. Hand cut skeletons and pumpkins are more our speed. But these just caught my eye. 

I have a big goal today for work. Finish one of my parts of the big project. If not today, then tomorrow. I frequently think I can see my way through a project, but skip the necessary mid-steps in my mind. This makes tomorrow a better bet. We shall see.

Bob’s Day (and me)

October 21, 2017

I chose the following picture because it has Bob, but also two of my other favorite people. 

Bob is 90 today! Quite an accomplishment. 
In addition to Carl, Bob and I share a birthday. I hope his breakfast was as good as mine (served in bed).

I allowed myself to sleep in this morning after a night out on the town. We saw the Seattle Women’s Chorus Fired Up! show. They included a long set by the Northwest Girlchoir and backed up Isolde Fair on her To All the Little Girls song, inspired by Hillary Clinton. click here if you haven’t already heard this

This was actually our second night out this week. We saw Ragtime Wednesday night at the 5th Avenue theatre. Another inspiring performance that makes you realize how far we came, and wonder why we have to repeat so many lessons.

Last Sunday we joined several others to dedicate a bench to our friend Nick Gallo. It’s hard to believe he has been gone for 10 years. Carl and Nick played years of softball and coached little league together. 

The bench features typewriter keys to celebrate Nick’s work as a writer, a bat signed by and presented to him by his little league team, and a plaque with a family etching  (the rooster is for Gallo). The plaque’s shape is the Kingdome’s baseball field shape. 

That’s Ashlan’s signature on the bat.  The bench builder was also in attendance. He did quite a job.

In amoung all of these events were the Major League playoffs, featuring the Cubs, until Thursday night. I suffered that game alone because Carl squeezed in a trip to Eugene to watch Parker,  a sophomore play in his high schools final soccer game of the season. Parker is quite a player, on the varsity team already and scored 6 goals this season. 

My long term birthday wish, other than world peace, is to watch a Mariners game on my birthday. Today I will settle for lunch out at Ivar’s Salmon House. 

First Frost

October 14, 2017

The weather has been distinctly cooler this past week, in the 40s most mornings. This morning my first look out the window showed even cooler temperatures. 

Frost on the roofs. [Of course I don’t get such a clear view most mornings because it is still dark.]

We went out to dinner and a movie last night. We walked to the Seattle Center area, about 4-1/2 miles. Again the season is showing itself, we both wore outerwear  (sweater and jacket for me and a fleece vest for Carl). 

Instead of hitting up a restaurant we wandered into a grocery store and picked out a Greek salad and turkey pesto wrap to share. We wandered into the Center to a group of picnic tables next to the Center playground. The sounds of the kids playing was joined by the announcer and fans of the Roosevelt, our neighborhood school,  vs Rainier Beach football game at Memorial stadium. [Garfield, our kid’s alma mater,  vs Eastside Catholic was the second game scheduled for the evening. ]

It was comfortable at first, but as the warmth of walking wore off and the shadows lengthened, it got a bit chilly. 

With the dinner gone, we headed to the movie venue, MOPOP or Museum of Popular Culture, formerly known as the Experience Music Project. The museum hosts viewing of various movies in the Sky Church, known as Campout Cinemas. We saw the Wizard of Oz here a few years ago.

Tonight’s fare was the Dark Crystal, a 35-year old Jim Henson film.

People bring blankets, pillows and sleeping bags to put on the floor and get comfortable. Since we walked our comfort items were limited to a large couch pillow each. Good for the head, but not much for the body. Luckily, we were at the head of the line to get in and scored a seat on one of the few couches they provided. 

The movie was preceded by a talk by Cheryl Henson, daughter of Jim. If you zoom in the picture,  she is in the center. It also provides some scale for the size of the screen.

As usual, the Skeksie dinner scene was my favorite, but I saw more detail in the creatures of the world than I had noticed on our previous small screen  (probably 19-inch) viewings.

As we left, I captured a grainy view of the Space Needle, undergoing renovation. Scaffolding in the sky. 

Then off to the bus for a ride close to home. The work to improve vehicular connections between the Seattle Center and the South Lake Union area and I -5 has also made the pedestrian trek under Aurora much nicer. Bus system improvements, like a bus every 15 minutes even in the evening, also helps greatly. 

Walks to the Seattle Center are no longer hampered by how to get home. And on the reverse taking the bus to the Center for a show is pretty realistic, avoiding the whole parking issue.

Walk for Fun

October 9, 2017

Saturday was my idea of a typical fall Seattle day. Some rain and cooler temperatures. We hung around the house doing chores and a bit of work. Sunday promised better weather and we launched mid-morning to see what was up around the neighborhood. 

Our initial destination was some stairs. The only difficulty was deciding which set of stairs to aim for. Due to its hilly nature, Seattle has many staircases with hundreds of steps. For today it was either a 400+/- set from Eastlake up to Capital Hill or 300+/- from the University District down to the lower university.  We chose the latter.

Last year there was an attempt to have bicycle stations added around the city, as many other cities have done. It failed. This effort has been replaced with 3 companies that have bicycle just hanging out around the city, available for use. (These have no helmets provided.) I finally ran across all three varieties together. 

Our walk wound past University Village towards Husky Stadium. There was a Saturday evening football game, and a tailgating straggler still  remained.

Other detritus too. 

More natural forest flora. 

We found Hercules in a sylvan glen.

And a Meany hiding off the beaten path. 

All in all, a pleasant 5 miles or so.

Wayne’s World 

September 26, 2017

Or how I spent my Sunday, hanging out with Wayne Drop and several friends. 

Wayne was quite a hit. Literally during the kickball game when he was “tagged” out (In kickball you are tagged out if they hit you with the ball), and later when he couldn’t quite catch the Mariner Moose’s kick and it hit him in the nose. And then there was the incident when the Matress Mania dude took a right and bowled Wayne over.

But a good time was had by all, and it got some good laughs.

Carl was there too, in his usual costume. 

At the end of the day the Mariners have been eliminated from playoff contention. We returned home to rest and contemplate a week with nothing scheduled  (except work).

Weekend Wandering Plus

September 20, 2017

Saturday was a busy day (and only 3 days ago, even though it seems much longer). First off was family work – bills, etc. Then we set off on foot for the Seattle Asian Art Museum. There was not a specific installation to see, but the lack of anything on the walls. They are getting ready for a major remodel, and all of the art has been removed. 

They had a taiko drumming group and lion dancers programmed, along with art activities. I was really hoping to hear the drums inside an empty building,  but all of the performances were outside. 

Even the camel had a good time. 

From the museum we headed down to a bus route and travelled to Wallingford for a wurst. 

After eating our fill and enjoying some music it was back on the bus for home.

Not content to call it a day, we both headed into my office for a few hours of work. And finally, there must be baseball, so we went to watch Carl’s baseball team from last year play a game. [I was able to fit a few hours at work in because the baseball game was held at one of the 3 high schools by the office. ]

Sunday was busy, but all at work. By myself. It was necessary because I had a presentation for our Monday board meeting that was not complete. I streamed some music and buckled down for a day similar to a regular work day, but without interruptions. Until I got home where work continued in a different vein. 

Wayne Drop had accompanied me home. He’s big and blue and friendly, but lacks appropriate outer wear for traveling to and from his engagements.

 I had a king-size sheet to work with, but no clear path beyond. So the evening was spent trying, tucking, pinning  (actually binder clipping) until I had a plan. 

Monday was back to the grind, including said Board meeting, that lasted until past 6:30. From there to a fabric store for Velcro and cord. And home to sew.

Pulled out the trusty 60+year old Singer Featherweight and set to creating what was essentially a cylinder with an open top. [Carl assisted with the bottom circle by holding the middle point while I drew the circle  (pin, 18 inches of string and a white fabric pencil)]

This work went on until about 1:30 am, but it’s done. [Deadline was Friday am, but the Mariners are back in town, and out of the playoffs barring a miracle finish.]


Public Viewing 

September 13, 2017

Our neighborhood is now in constant flux. Since we the people voted to extend light rail from the University of Washington to Northgate our neighborhood has been deeply involved. First it was several years of working out the exact route. I spent many hours working on that effort, and in the end the route that would have taken 25 homes out of our neighborhood was rejected in favor of one that took out the grocery store. 

Now it is enduring continuous construction. First up is the light rail itself. Most of this is underground  (tunnels), but there are the stations and the cross-passages, and one small sinkhole. Second, and much more prevalent, are the new muli-family and mixed use buildings. 5 to 8 stories replacing 1 and 2 story buildings. (We lived in one of these for 6 months) We call certain areas the canyonlands. Any commercial structure less than 3 stories days are numbered. And many are built with little or no parking, even though the light rail is still 4 years away.

However, there appears to be one bonus. We found a walk-up x-ray machine on the sidewalk. I didn’t even realize it was a doctor’s office.