Greetings from Seattle

Monday, April 10, 2017

Birthday Bookend Weekend

Friday we joined other members of our breakfast group for lunch instead, to celebrate Jeanne's birthday.

Jeanne is in her mid-eighties, and has been in poor health for a long time now. She is no longer able to join the group for breakfasts on Fridays, so once in a while we come to her, where she is hostess for our potluck salad lunch, and the celebration of whoever had a birthday for that quarter of the year. 
This time we celebrated Jeanne, on the left, and Mavis, on the right. However, Mavis will be turning 90 in May, so we will be doing that one up big on her actual day. Jeanne is trying not to show her black eye, the result of a fall just the day before. Fortunately the doctor checked her out and declared her OK. 

These are all women that Tom worked with at Des Moines Elementary School, where he taught PE and then Kindergarten. He retired from this school, and most of these women had their retirement parties in our garden. That's why they had to adopt me too. 

I don't have  picture of Jan, who was taking all the photos, but she got me.  
 Tom and I had managed to get in our walk before gathering for this lunch. Then we spent all afternoon visiting. 

On Saturday we were assigned to meet Isaac and Irene at the airport on their flight back home from spending spring break with their dad in South Carolina. They had stories of a wild storm that crashed and boomed overhead while they were tent camping on the Atlantic coast. 

Later that day we walked and then Tom went over to Jill's house to begin installing some cabinets as part of her remodel. Jill was in the mountains again, teaching ice ax arrest with The Mountaineers.  I stayed home and worked in the yard, cleaning up after our last wind storm.

Sunday morning Tom and I diverted from our usual walking route and went further down the hill to Crystal Springs Park.
This is a mostly natural park, a bit of a walk on the wild side, in a greenbelt along a freeway. 
 Things are blooming - salmon berry,
 Oregon Grape, 

 Fern fiddle heads. 
 There really are springs here in Crystal Springs. 

 Everything is going green!

 In some places, moss is easier to grow than grass. 

We spent most of the rest of Sunday finishing the wind storm clean up in the yard, and filling yard waste bins. 

At 5:00 we gathered with Jan, Jill, Isaac and Irene, and Jake to celebrate Jake's 42nd birthday.  We had dinner at a brew pub in nearby Burien, and then came back to our house for birthday pie. 

Jake's real birthday is Tuesday, April 11th, but all the young 'uns will be at school and work that day. It was good to get the family together. 

Happy Birthday to Jake! 


  1. I love seeing all the native plants starting to bloom. When I see the trillium blooms, I know it's time to go look for mushrooms! It's great that you stay in touch with people you worked with!

  2. That birthday cake is beautiful. Looks like you had a good time with both your gatherings.

  3. Birthday cake, birthday pie... it's all good.

    You're looking super slim on the photo. Obviously your efforts have paid off.

  4. It's always nice to get back with retired colleagues. Did I read it right? Tom taught kindergarten? Awesome. We need more men to teach in the primary area. I taught gr one in the country school . It was most rewarding to teach gr oners. I've never forgotten it.

  5. lovely birthday celebrations and so much green!

  6. I believe that's about as beautiful cake as I've seen. The whole post is uplifting. Those teacher friends still hanging in there in their 80s and 90s makes me smile. Good for them. I have to say you are doing a fine job managing your weight. You really look good. Isn't it great to see so much green now in nature. Always gives me hope for the future. This is storm season in those Southern States. Some of their storms are very serious. I never cease to be amazed how little thunder and lightening we experience here in the Pacific Northwest compared to when we lived in Texas. I can just imagine Isaac and Irene had never experienced such a storm. Good to see your whole family. They look happy and healthy.

  7. You sure do have a wonderful place to walk. I enjoyed seeing all of the plants and flowers. It's wonderful to have days like the one you had. I love that the teacher group from Tom's school still get together on a regular basis. I think such strong bonds are formed with teachers.

    The family birthday celebration photo is great. Jake's birthday is the same day as my father's. Happy birthday to Jake!

  8. I like the title of "bookend birthdays" which seems very appropriate. And Happy Birthday to them as well! :-)

  9. It looks like a perfect weekend to me. Don't you love having the kids all together? I can remember my mom saying that when we would all gather and now I find myself having that same thought.

  10. Birthday cake and pie all in the same weekend? You lucky pup. Jeanne should probably stop picking fights after soccer matches:) Happy birthday to her and also to Jake!

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  12. Very nice photo of you. You are and have such good friends. Friends, family and birthdays, lovely.

  13. How sweet of your group to take the party to your friend. That was quite a shiner she had.
    The storm in a tent sounds like a better story to tell later than to live through. Glad they were OK.
    Happy Birthday Jake. Celebrate well.

  14. Happy birthday, Jake. Aloha from Hawaii.

  15. Happy Belated Birthday, Jake! It's always wonderful to celebrate your birthday with the family. What a gorgeous birthday cake for Jeanne!

  16. Happy Birthday to your Jake! He is the same age as our youngest daughter. The 40's are interesting to watch from afar when your kids get to be that age:)


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