Friday, June 27, 2008

Priceless - Part 2

One of the benefits of having a close extended family was the burden of providing a rich life for me was not completely on my mom's shoulders. My grandpa (who died in 2003) used to take me camping every summer for a few weeks at a time. The picture is of Butt Lake Resevior, where my family camped every year since way before I was born. Many times I'd get to take my friends (almost cousins) Lizzie and Rosie. We would ride our bikes for hours only returning to camp to eat and check in with Grandpa. If we weren't biking, we swam in the warm water of the lake, and jump into it from a rope swing. I think the only times we weren't in our bathing suits was after dark when the mosquitoes came out. Grandpa would take us fishing, boating and on motorcycle rides on his old Honda 60. When we would drive into Chester to go to the laundromat, we often got an ice cream at The Pine Shack Frosty. If we were lucky, Grandpa would let us ride in the back of the camper on the way. When I remember my Grandpa, I picture him sitting under a shade tree, with a Pepsi in one hand, and a Lucky Strike in the other keeping an eye on me while I swim in the lake. Good times...

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Priceless - Part 1

My mom and I were talking the other day, and she was saying how she felt bad because she feels I missed out on a lot of things when I as a kid. I asked her, "Like what?" She said she didn't know but she wishes we would have had more money.

Money is not the key to a rich life. Having family that loves you is much more important. Making memories doesn't require much money, if any.

I have very fond memories of my mom taking me to Dolores Park (see picture above). We would pack up a picnic lunch, a blanket, jump on MUNI and head over there where I spent the whole afternoon swinging on the swings and getting blisters from the monkey bars. Mom would watch me from a shade tree for the gazillionth time when I would yell "Mom, watch this!" and flip upsidedown from the high monkey bars. On the way home, we sometimes would stop at West Coast Video where mom's boyfriend worked (and still works) and pick up a tape to watch.

MUNI fare, 1 adult/1 child: $1.25
Video tape rental: $2
Making memories with mom: Priceless

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

We're movin' on up!

3 bedroom, 2 bathroom duplex with a carport on the north side of Newberg for only $120 more a month than we're paying for our 2 bedroom, 1 bath apartment with no yard. The new place is sooo much better. The kitchen is slightly bigger with many more cupboards. The dining is separate from the living room, and it is lenoleum. There are larger windows. We share a backyard and front yard with a neighbor. The only drawback is that they aren't completly fenced in, but it will be so nice to not have to get the kids completely dressed to play outside. If Timmy needs to play outside, all I have to do is throw on a robe and put some sneakers on him. Jimmy will have his own room until he sleeps through the night, then he can share with his big brother. Snoring and rolling over will no longer wake him up! And, then we'll finally have our family room with our computers and the kids' toys. The living room will actually look like a living room, not an office/playroom. This place is worth my time in decorating. Robert will have his tomatoes and peppers in our yard, not in my parking space. And, I might even get ambitious and plant some stuff myself. The management mows the yards too, which is good because we don't own a lawnmower or hedge trimmers. We will no longer have parking space BBQs, they will be backyard BBQs complete with patio furniture. Timmy can jump off the couch until his little heart content because no one is below us. Our downstars neighbors will rejoice! Nothing will remind me of smoking because I have never smoked there. There is a little church a few blocks away I'm hoping to check out too. God is so good! First Robert got a substantial raise then we move into a house! How can it get any better?