Tuesday, August 31, 2010

An Invitation!

*Oops! Accidently put the date on the original invite as Saturday, September 25th...the party is actually Friday, September 24th!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

The Flowers and the Bees

Some more examples of just how awesome the 85mm lens we got is. My parents have huge bushes of flowers off their front deck, which are just swarming with honey bees. The detail this lens was able to pick up was just awesome.

Check out that pollen on the bee in the bottom picture. Amazing!

Ok, bedtime now.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

The New Additions...

...to the camera bag, that is.

After Nathan shot a wedding in Pacific City this month, we decided it was finally time to invest in some fixed zoom lenses for portrait photography. The clarity in a fixed zoom lens is so superior to a zoom lens.

The two lenses we invested in were the Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G and the Nikkor 85mm f/1.8D. We're kind of in love with them. They're definitely taking some getting use to, as you have to move your body to zoom rather than adjusting the lens, but the quality of photos is totally worth the amount of movement involved. And hey, it's photography AND a workout.



There's a ton more photos to come...we took the boys out to the Evergreen Air & Space Museum this evening to play on their huge play structure and explore the airplanes they have around the buildings. It was a ton of fun - the boys even went down the super tall slide all by themselves! Over and over again! I'd love to share more of the photos tonight, but this momma has to be to work in about 8 hours. So I'm off to bed.

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Form of Torture?

The boys would say yes.

This evening, we set up the red step stool in the kitchen, oiled up the clippers, and gave the boys their very first haircut.

They were less than impressed.



Asher feeling Levi's pain.

Levi being comforted by Daddy.

Asher's turn.


Levi sympathizing with Asher.

Levi's finished product.

Asher's finished product.

It wasn't as hard as I thought it would be to give them their first haircuts; I thought it was going to tug on my heart strings or something. But now they just look so handsome and like such big boys! It will be fun to get them dressed up in big boy shirts and pants, to see how grown up they look.

And I gotta admit...they look a whole lot better without the beginnings of a baby mullet.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


No, that wasn't a belated response to the World Cup.

I actually reached my weight loss goal today!!!

Knowing I had to weigh in at 6 pm, I refrained from snacking after lunch, went for a run between work and weigh-in, and managed to hit 127.6 lbs! Oh man, am I excited! I reached goal literally only 11 days short of a year after starting Weight Watchers.

The Stats:

Beginning Weight: 174.4 lbs
Total Lost: 44.8 lbs
Goal Weight: 128 lbs
Final Weight: 127.6 lbs

It's been a long road, but so totally worth it. Especially when I look these two photos side by side. You can click on the image to see a bigger version.

And to reward myself?

I bought one of these puppies:

A Kindle Latest Generation. It holds 3,500 electronic books. Drool. Have I mentioned how much I love to read? It's back ordered, so it won't arrive until around September 8th. But this latest version costs $50 less than a used Generation 2 (the last version). How does that make sense? I just don't know. But I will be absolutely giddy when it arrives.

Now I just have to maintain within two pounds above or below my goal weight for six weeks, and then I become a Lifetime Member. At that point, I get to be a member for free, as long as I weigh in at least once each month and stay within those two pounds above or below goal.

I'm not sure if I mentioned it on here, but both my mom and dad are doing Weight Watchers as well. They both reached their goal and recently both became Lifetime Members, which is just so exciting! It has been fun going through this experience with them, and invaluable to have the support.


Friday, August 6, 2010

Be Still My Heart

While I was sleeping in this morning, Nathan brought out our fancy camera and started snapping photos of the boys, in preparation for the wedding he's shooting tomorrow in Pacific City.



Asher again...so serious.

The last photo just kills me. That's a little boy staring into the camera. I know I keep saying they're not babies anymore, but I think I'm still living in a state of denial.

The first two photos, on the other hand, make me smile like a loon. I just love my boys.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Laugh or Cry

In my line of work, we have the choice to either laugh or cry. 99% of the time, we choose to laugh. In order to laugh, we develop an incredibly dark sense of humor.

Tonight, I looked death in the face. Not my own death, but someone else's. A complete stranger's. I think I heard that her name was Laura.

It all started innocently enough. As it had been almost two months since Nathan and my last date night, we decided to call in a babysitter and have a date night. We started at the Rooftop Bar, on the top of McMinamin's Hotel Oregon here in town. So-so food, mediocre beer, great location. After a beer and some Cajun tots, we decided to relocate to Golden Valley, the local brewery. Good food, much better beer...and a more extensive wine list.

Not long after we had been seated on the patio and received our first drinks, I noticed an elderly lady a couple of tables away looking like she was struggling to breathe. Seeing as how we were in a restaurant, my first thought was choking. I saw someone I assumed was her son get up, walk to her side, and start talking to her. I could see she was having problems, but the son looked pretty calm, so I kept an eye on her while going back to our conversation.

Next thing I knew, a lady at the neighboring table was rushing to the older lady's side, attempting the Heimlich. Did I mention that the lady's face was blue? I told the son I was a 911 dispatcher and asked if anyone had called 911 yet; still looking deceptively calm, he said our waiter was calling.

As a dispatcher, one of our first thoughts in a medical emergency is to get the phone as close to the patient as possible, in order to give instructions and get timely updates on the patient's condition. I immediately ran inside, found the waiter who was on the phone with one of my fellow dispatchers, and directed him back to the patient. By the time we got back out there, other bystanders were getting the lady on her back on the floor. She was blue. Everything about her was blue. Not knowing if anyone else knew CPR, I kneeled down at her side at the same time a young man kneeled on her other side and asked if we should do CPR.

Thank God for repetitive training...he started doing chest compressions while I gave direction from memory. 30 compressions, 2 breaths. 30 compressions, 2 breaths.

Once upon a time, I thought about becoming a paramedic. Now I know I didn't miss my calling. I like having the phone between myself and the picture that is now stuck in my mind.

There was a point, after the first set of 30 compressions, when the man doing compressions hesitated when I asked him if he would be willing to do rescue breaths. As an Emergency Medical Dispatcher, you don't ask someone if they will do rescue breaths. You just give instructions and then work around a refusal if one pops up. But I saw exactly what he saw. I saw the human being he was about to lock lips with. I had to ask. He only hesitated a moment before diving in, but that moment seemed like an eternity; an eternity filled with the question of whether I would be willing to take his place if he said no.

I didn't know the answer to that question. I only felt relief when he continued. I still don't know the answer to that question. And that bothers me. But I was there.

I was there, pushing everyone to continue when they thought they heard her breathing but didn't have the training to see that it was agonal breathing...the last breaths. I was there watching her color get better when we did continue. Watching the food gradually come out of her throat. Watching her start to come around.

I was there when the paramedics finally arrived. Our instructors weren't lying when they said that two minutes feels like two hours to the person on scene. Once the ambulance arrived, I started shaking.

I was there to watch her being wheeled to the ambulance. Awake. Conscious. Arguing with the paramedics about going to the hospital.

I could have cried.

Instead, I laughed. And cracked inappropriate jokes. That's how it works.

Later, after everything had calmed down and the ambulance had transported their patient to the hospital, I made sure to find the man who had actually done the CPR. I wanted to let him know that he saved a life tonight. It would have been wrong for the night to end without him knowing that, without his help, that woman would have died. I saw exactly what he saw right before he blew into that woman's mouth. It wasn't pretty. It didn't look like the movies. It was messy and disturbing, and I'll probably have nightmares about it. But he kept going. In my eyes, he is the hero of the night. Nathan said he heard that the man was an off-duty officer...I didn't recognize him, so maybe he wasn't one of ours, but it wouldn't surprise me if he was an officer somewhere. That kind of bravery and compassion is easy to recognize.

I think I'll be nervous about eating out anywhere for a while.

My Little Monkey

Check out Asher's new trick.

There's a reason we call them our monkey boys.