Greetings from Seattle

Friday, April 10, 2009


When we are all together as a family, which isn't often, our son Jake tends to be at the center of things. just like in this photo taken last August at the Rockaway Beach cabin. Saturday, April 11th is Jake's thirty-fourth birthday. He's far from being a little kid anymore, and he would not want me to say that he's still my baby, but he is. Jake is a single guy living in the Wallingford district of Seattle. Hit by the economic downturn, he works when he can. When he isn't working he has a great time playing. We celebrated with him last night, since he will get together with friends this weekend at the Whidbey cabin for his traditional beach birthday bash. It just happens that his birthday and Easter are on the same weekend again, as has happened before, so the gathering may be smaller. Last night we had dinner at a brew pub he likes and then did some shopping for a new radio and speakers for GusTheBus, his 1977 VW camper van, which has been handed down from his Aunt Jan to his sister Jill, and finally to him. He and Gus go on adventures together. Jake has had many adventures. Ten years ago this summer, he and his sister stood together on the summit of Mt Rainier. They were both single at the time, living near Seattle, and active members of the Mountaineers. This is just one of several climbs and hikes they did together.
Jake doesn't always have a partner free to hike with him, so he has gone it alone too, as he did here on this trip into the Enchantments, a wilderness area in the northern Cascade Mountains.
Besides hiking, Jake is an avid bike rider. Two summers ago he did the one-day Seattle to Portland ride, about 200 miles, and we were his crew. While he was proud of his accomplishment, he decided it was too long to be fun, unless he was part of a team.
Jake is a beer connoisseur. He likes to drink finely crafted beers, and he is an avid home brewer as well. Some of the equipment you see here was a Christmas present from us when we shopped at Bob's Homebrew Supply, a store that knows Jake well.
Although he doesn't get to see them often, Jake is a beloved Uncle to his niece and nephew, who live in Colorado.
Here he and Isaac are sharing Isaac's new Lego's last Christmas in Colorado. Jake loved Lego's at Issac's age too.
This photo was taken last summer, after we returned from our trip to the Netherlands, Belgium and France. When we travel we bring home soccer jerseys, or "kits" as true aficionados of "football", the beautiful game, would say. Here Jake and Isaac are wearing their Dutch National Team kits.
Jake has played soccer since he was eight years old, and currently plays on two adult teams. He is ecstatic about the new Major League Soccer team in Seattle, the Seattle Sounders FC. He bought season tickets the first day they went on sale last year. This Saturday he will miss the match, but we are going in his stead, with instructions on where to hang the "Green Hell" banner. The fans wear bright green and are quite rabid, not a friendly place for the opponents.
Jake bought the flag. I did the lettering. Jake is a frustrated volcanologist. When he was five years old, Mt. St. Helens erupted practically in our back year here in the northwest. He was hooked. He collected rocks and read all he could about volcanoes. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in geophysics from Western Washington University in Bellingham, in the shadow of Mt Baker. He would have liked to have gone on to an advanced degree in Volcanology, but those slots in graduate school are very precious, and he was not selected. So he does the next best thing. He supports himself as a surveyor and heads for the mountains whenever he can.
Our lives continue to be enriched by the many experiences we have had because of Jake and his interesting life.
Happy Birthday, Jake, and


  1. interesting son in seattle is 39 and a loner too. not married but lots of friends, likes karate and computers-he's an indoor guy. He's also my baby from my first batch of sons. Fun to share in their lives. I didn't know you could legally make beer.

  2. Lin - anyone can make beer. You just need a license to sell it.

  3. Happy Birthday, Jake, from your Aunt Ilene

  4. Funny how many of us have a son like Jake. My son, Jon is also an independent thinker who LOVES the outdoors. Jake is a handsome, strong, smart, independent thinker who loves his family. He is definitely a son to be proud of. I'll bet he's also a favorite uncle!

  5. All you ladies with your wonderful single sons and me with my single daughter....Happy Birthday Jake!!!

  6. That's a wonderful blog Linda. Well done Jake for getting out there and "doing it!" You sound very proud of him and rightfully so! - Dave

  7. Our babies are about the same age - Jeffrey will be 36 in May

    Jake has an eclectic set of interests!

    Happy Birthday Jake!

  8. What a lovely tribute! He must be single because he wants to be since he sounds like quite a catch! I have some friends I could set him up with... ;-)

    Whenever I tell people my birthday around the Pac NW, they always say, "That is when Mt. St. Helens blew!" I didn't get that much growing up in N. AZ. I have a friend who is a vulcanologist and wrote a great book about his experiences when young in Hawaii. I can't remember the name of it, but if you look up Wendell Duffield on Amazon, you could probably find it. I think Jake might like reading it if he hasn't already!


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