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Author Archives: .

Back to Germany

We finally made it to Germany again.  It’s been ten years since I’ve been, 19 for Kelly, and first time for the kids.  Germany is like a life time capsule for me since I spent so much time there when I was young.  And going there in ten year increments really puts a spotlight on … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, TRAVEL France, TRAVEL Germany | Leave a comment

Busy Summer

I’ll keep it short, just to get a journal entry in… Work has been insane busy.  This is a good thing in the consulting business, especially following a slow stretch.  Busy bidding work, designing projects, and dealing with staff changes.  Fun times though.  The work is interesting and challenging, and I have a great office … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Homemade, The Homestead | Leave a comment

The 1905 Project

Well, we bought the duplex, moved into one side of it, and rented the other side to a great set of folks we have met and known now for two years. This is a massive project since the entire building is a fixer upper.  Fortunately the rented side has been refurbed already though, so that … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Homemade, Money, The Homestead | Leave a comment

Gone

Mom died this morning. It happened so quickly, but we fortunately had a few days to visit and say goodbye last week.  So many conflicting emotions, memories and what if’s.  Can’t really prepare for this actually happening. Unbelievable. A lifetime of interactions and moments shared, all coming back, along with acceptance that there won’t be … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time | 2 Comments

Miami 2017

I’m off to Miami today… Thursday morning. Unbelievable. Mom went from apparently healthy to hospice in 11 weeks. It can happen fast. Another consistent reminder, if there is something that you want to do or say, move it up. Everyone is coming together to visit and to support. So many memories flood back at times … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Learning, TRAVEL Florida | Leave a comment

Enjoy The Good Days

My work took me to Honolulu for a week to work with the utility company in Oahu.  The project came up suddenly, but we were able to also swing having the family come along.  It was a very interesting trip, getting familiar with a utility company that is isolated on a very small island and not interconnected with … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, TRAVEL Hawaii | Leave a comment

Strange Winter

It has been unusually icy and snowy this winter.  Portland typically has mild winters and only a little snow every few years.  This year, however, it has snowed several times already, and this last time, it snowed for about 24 hours straight, and there was a foot of snow covering everything.  Unfortunately, the city is … Continue reading »

Categories: Columbia River Gorge, Family Time, Getting Around | Leave a comment

Trillium Lake Snowshoeing

I’ve been waiting for a good day to go out and check out all the snow the mountain has been having this season.  A good day means the rare clear blue, rain free day, a day where Kelly was free and a day where I could break away from work commitments. So I picked up … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Hiking, Hood National Forest, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

New Car Share

It’s been about two and a half years now since we’ve owned our own car and it actually keeps getting easier and more convenient.  The latest addition is Reach Now, a car share service run by BMW.  It works just like Car2Go, the Smart Car service we’ve used for two years now.  So Reach Now … Continue reading »

Categories: Getting Around | Leave a comment

Audi A6 Drive

I took another drive out through the Oregon desert on the east side of the Cascades.  It’s about three and a half hours from Portland to Yakima, Wa, through the Yakima Nation reservation.  It was a cool day, in the low 70’s and crystal clear in all directions. I got to the rental car place … Continue reading »

Categories: Columbia River Gorge, Getting Around, Learning, TRAVEL Oregon, TRAVEL Washington | Leave a comment

Lost Lake

I was able to snag a couple of nights in the big cabin, cabin #7, at Lost Lake Resort, about an hour and 45 minutes from home, just north of Mt. Hood.  I booked it a couple of months ago and all of the early summer weekends were already booked, so we took a Monday and … Continue reading »

Categories: Columbia River Gorge, Family Time, Hiking, Hood National Forest, TRAVEL Oregon | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Horsetail Falls/Columbia River Gorge

Horsetail falls off of exit 35 from I-84, a short 45 minute drive from home.  

Categories: Columbia River Gorge, Family Time, Hiking, Hood National Forest, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

Rockaway Beach/Seaside/Astoria, Oregon Coast, April 2016

Trip to the Oregon Coast for a short family vacation.  Pictures here. Trip to the Oregon Coast for a short family vacation.  Pictures here.

Categories: Family Time | Leave a comment

Portland Area/Columbia River Gorge Hiking

This spring I’ll be exploring the Hiking Trails of the Columbia River Gorge and other Mt. Hood area outdoor activities. The forests, waterfalls and trails in the area offer scenery that is as good as any in the world. Thick, green, fragrant, secluded pine forests with well mapped-out, unending trails that connect to the Pacific … Continue reading »

Categories: Columbia River Gorge, Family Time, Hiking, Hood National Forest, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

Camp Creek Campground

The campsites close to town fill for the whole season of weekends pretty early in the year, but about six weeks ago, I was able to reserve a site at Camp Creek Campground for this weekend.  It was the best camping trip ever, but then again, every trip is the best one. The Mt.Hood forest … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

Forest Park

Since the afternoons have been so hot this week, we decided to get out to Forest Park early on Saturday morning before the temperature started to climb, to explore some of the trails that we have not been on yet.  The cool morning air felt good, and leaving the house at 7:30, the temp was in … Continue reading »

Categories: TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

Downtown

When I left work on my bike one hot afternoon, I noticed this statue that I’ve seen many pictures of is right on the opposite corner from my office. When I got outside, I felt like I was back in Louisiana. It’s been pretty hot out here this week, getting over 100 degrees a couple … Continue reading »

Categories: The Homestead | Leave a comment

Mt. Hood National Forest

We live so close to the Mt.Hood National Forest that it was easy to take a loosely planned drive out there this weekend.  The sky was clear so it was a good day to get out to the Timberline Lodge to get a bird’s eye view of the area. The lodge is about an hour … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

Back to the Redwoods

We made our second trip down to the redwoods.  Second for me, Rylee and Luke but first for Kelly and Tate.  Kelly and Tate didn’t get to go with us the last time, but it it definitely an experience they had to share.  It’s a short drive down into Northern California to see the tall … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, TRAVEL California | Leave a comment

Oregon Caves National Monument

The first stop on the road trip was the Oregon Caves down in Cave junction in central Oregon.  This was about five hours from Portland and is part of the National Park System so it’s very well maintained and staffed with Park Rangers.  This was one of my favorite stops and I plan to go … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

1700 Mile Drive: Oregon, California & Nevada

We took another long road trip last week with seven stops in three states.  It was a very active trip with an agenda to keep all the stops and activities organized since the plan covered a lot of ground.  We’ve all had a lot of leisure over the past year, so none of us were … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Getting Around, TRAVEL California, TRAVEL Nevada, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

Wildwood Trail – Forest Park

I’ve been craving a forest hike lately and Kelly has been looking to get back out to the Rose Garden before it’s too late to see the roses in bloom, so this past weekend we made it out to a short section of the Wildwood Trail between the Washington Park Zoo and the Rose Garden. … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Getting Around, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

Zip Car

I joined the Zip Car car sharing service last week, so I have another part time, on-demand driving option now.  Zip Car is similar to the Car2Go in that there is an app on my phone where I can search for a car close by, reserve it, and drive it for as long as I … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Getting Around, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

May

May in Portland is great.  It’s about 55 degrees every night, about half the days are blue sky, and it rarely gets above 70 in the afternoon.  Sometimes it feels like it’s getting to be routine, but mostly I still feel like every day is a vacation out here. I’ve biked to work every day … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Learning, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

April

The primary event of this month has been Rylee’s broken leg. Today she goes to the orthopedic doc for her four week follow up, to take the long-leg-cast off, get an out of cast x-Ray, then decide on treatment going forward. She’s been brave through the process of her accident, denial of the injury and … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Getting Around, Learning | 2 Comments

new vehicle

Since I have a regular commute again, I decided to go ahead and replace the bike that got stolen last year. I found a comfortable hybrid bike that fits me well and is a lot faster than the old bike was. I’ve been riding it to work for a week now, and this is by … Continue reading »

Categories: Getting Around, Money | Leave a comment

Back to Work

Having gotten to February now, we have made it all the way around the horn with the experimental year away from work.  Transitions are always interesting and enlightening, as I expect this one to be as well. I’ve gained a lot this year and learned a lot about myself and my family.  I spent the … Continue reading »

Categories: Learning, Money | 4 Comments

Baton Rouge Visit

We made it back home for the holidays.  I haven’t been there since May 1st, so being back was interesting and brought back lots of memories of a great, long, free spring there at home with my family before we left. This was the first time I have ever spent a week there while sleeping … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, TRAVEL Louisiana | Leave a comment

Boston with Tate

Thanks to Kelly booking us a couple of multi-city airline tickets, Tate and I were able to make it out to Boston for a week before meeting Kelly, Rylee and Luke in Baton Rouge for the holidays.  Tate wanted to go to Boston to meet an internet friend, and I wanted to go out there … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Getting Around, Learning, Travel Massachusetts | Leave a comment

The Wealth of Nations

I finally finished the roughly 1100 pages of Adam Smith’s Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations last night.  This was the capstone book of my reading quest this year.  It sort of covers a lot of the themes I have explored in the other 20 or so books I’ve read or … Continue reading »

Categories: Learning, Money | Leave a comment

Solo trip to Chicago

It’s been about ten years since I visited Chicago, so it was nice to get back out there, even if just for an overnight solo trip.  It is a great city; big, busy and of course, very windy. This was the first time in a year that I’ve traveled, lodged and eaten at someone else’s … Continue reading »

Categories: Getting Around, Learning, Money, TRAVEL Illinois | Leave a comment

November

November is another big milestone month.  The last significant one for me was getting into august, the half way point of the year away from work.  These milestones make me really stop and think, and we’ve passed several of these interesting inflection points this year. November has its place here because it marks the end … Continue reading »

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Teen Freedom

Well, we reached a cool milestone here recently.  Of course we’re all traveling on the trains and buses, but now Tate is making solo trips home from school.  11 miles between towns, and he’s able to do it alone without needing to drive.  He just has his bus pass, house key and a cell phone … Continue reading »

Categories: Getting Around, Learning | Leave a comment

Car Free

We sold the van this week since we were only using it for our once a month road trips.  The rest of the time the van sat out on the street with no purpose. It’s been a year already since we went down to one car.  We have never missed the second car and it’ll … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Getting Around | 4 Comments

Six Months

Mid August marked the six month milestone for my year off.  I spent the first quarter of the year at home in Baton Rouge enjoying my city with a new level of freedom that was a good transition into this experimental year.  We spent the second quarter mostly traveling and planning all the logistics around … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Learning, TRAVEL Oregon | Leave a comment

2014 Book List

This is a page created to help me remember which books I read or listened to this year in roughly the order I completed them in.  Each book helps mark a very specific time in the unfolding of this year.  I hope I didn’t forget any… The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by … Continue reading »

Categories: Learning | 1 Comment

South Beach State Park, Oregon

We drove three hours from Portland down to Newport to the South Beach State Park for a two night camping trip.  Kelly coordinated this trip for us through the local unschool group that had this trip planned, possibly an annual trip with them. The drive down to central Oregon is a very nice drive.  Lots … Continue reading »

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Seattle

We had a window this week to get in a short trip to Seattle, so we got on the Amtrak here in Portland and took the 3.5 hour ride up the coast.  It’s nice to have a train right here for a quick run to another big city for $34 per adult, each way.  And … Continue reading »

Categories: Family Time, Getting Around, TRAVEL Washington | Leave a comment