Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Summer Adventures of the Green Family

We kicked off our summer in style by tagging along with Holly and her basset pals to Basset Fun Day, supporting Basset Rescue of Puget Sound. Each hound got a free bandana and enjoyed a "basset buffet," with treats especially appealing to our floppy-eared friends. Holly entered some sporting events but unfortunately the lure of a bacon treat was her downfall each time. In the picture below, she is being wooed by one of many suitors.

In this picture, Roman is attempting to get three dogs to "sit." As we told you in an earlier post, Holly has been going to dog training (which is actually more like "owner training"). Roman is surprisingly good at the commanding "alpha-dog" tone but bassets, unfortunately, only pay attention when they feel like it. Holly will sit on command ... if it's the second Wednesday in the month, the moon is in Taurus, and it's raining with a hint of sausage in the air.

One of our favorite activities this summer was exploring Alki Beach and Constellation Park at low tide. We often ventured out to find purple starfish, sea anemones, and lots of crabs. Roman enjoyed splashing in tide pools and chasing mommy with kelp.

Roman is now the fastest thing on three wheels in our neighborhood. He's quite a daredevil on his tricycle and also enjoys riding his three-wheeled scooter. As you can see, it won't be long before he graduates to a bicycle (although Daddy's bike is a bit too big). Roman's big kid pals Devlin and Luke have both given him their old bikes and Roman can't wait to try them out. We just need to get some training wheels, and he'll be off!

He has already asked for a skateboard and a pogo stick (this is what comes of having lots of "big kids" on our street). Santa may (and this is a big MAY) bring a skateboard for Christmas. Mommy and Daddy are still researching it as it appears that it's really something for the 6 plus crowd. However, Roman is riding his scooter (skateboard style) down hills and recently hopped on a stray skateboard, and tried to "do a trick like Liam does." So maybe we have the next Tony Hawk in our midst ...or maybe we have many trips to the ER in our future.

Liam is our 8-year-old neighbor who has a huge trampoline in his back yard, does skateboard tricks down the street, and wanted to take Roman for a ride on his pogo stick. All things, which Roman thinks are extremely COOL. Just wait until he sees snowboards...

At one of our favorite destinations ... Jack Block Park, overlooking the Port of Seattle terminals (Roman could spend a whole morning watching the freight containers being unloaded).

Other summer activities included several Mariners games at Safeco Field. We usually stay for the Seventh Inning Stretch then it's time to head home for bed. Roman's favorite Mariner is the Moose!

We also took Roman to see the Seattle Sounders (Seattle's MLS team). We sat in the Fox Sports suite at Qwest Field, which he loved, but the crowd was way too noisy for him and we had to leave early. He loves soccer but we'll have to start with some smaller venues.

We returned to "Day Out With Thomas" at the Snoqualmie Valley Railway. Roman is a Thomas nut! His favorite characters are Salty, Cranky the Crane, and the extremely stuffy Harold the Helicopter. Roman also enjoys seeing the other steam engines and operating the miniature railway.

The highlight of our summer was WACAP Family Camp at Sun Lakes, Washington. Many families who adopted through WACAP get together for a long weekend each year. There were children from all over the world including Ethiopia, China, Guatemala, Vietnam, Korea, and of course, Russia. We enjoyed spending time with our friends the Ghayems and the Douglasses (Polina and Luke's parents) and meeting other WACAP families. Roman had an absolute blast! We plan to make it an annual trip. 


Roman had a crush on Luke's sister Taylor and her friend Alissa, and demanded to know why he couldn't go to the Teen Center too (not until the 2020 Family Camp we told him, but you may be able to sneak in there in 2019).

First time in a "Big Boy Bed" (in our cabin at camp). We had to move the dresser in front of the door every night so the master escape artist wouldn't go out for a walk.

Roman took swimming classes this summer and enjoyed being in the water. We bought him his own life-jacket and he had tremendous fun swimming in the pool and in beautiful Park Lake with us. But when it came to swimming classes it was time to ditch the life-jacket. Although we did warn him, he was quite surprised when he jumped in (with a loud cry of "cannonball!") and sank like a rock. Rich, of course, fished him out super-quick. He now knows that we humans don't naturally bounce back up when we hit the water.

We had lots of family come to visit towards the end of August. First to arrive were Uncle Gary and Aunt Linda (Aunt Linda is Rich's dad's sister) who visited from Phoenix. Roman likes to call Uncle Gary "Mustang Gary" because he gave him a shiny red toy Mustang.

We had so much fun with Gary and Linda, Roman really enjoyed spending time with them.

On "The Duck" (amphibious vehicle).

Rich's sister Aunt Bekke came to visit us from Atlanta, and Roman convinced her to try a "pedal surrey" on Alki beach. Roman was in charge of ringing the bell, a job which he undertook with gusto. I think we all needed helmets!

We gave our back yard a makeover and it is now a great place for Roman to run and play.

Unfortunately, a family of raccoons is also enjoying the new lawn. The freshly laid sod is easy for them to pull up, and underneath they find a buffet of juicy worms and bugs. We've woken up to find our lawn ripped up a few times and we're hoping they'll leave it alone long enough for it to put down some roots. We've read that the smell of cougar poop will put raccoons off so we are going to buy some from Cougar Mountain Zoo (yes, they do actually sell it). It's good compost too. Just hope it doesn't attract cougars to our back yard.

We'll end our summer blog entry with the biggest news, which has been something of a blessing in disguise. After 23 years working at Fox Sports Net, Rich was laid off (on his birthday). The company laid several people off on the same day due to changing ownership and "structural reorganization". Because of his long tenure, Rich got 6 months of severance pay and also has unemployment benefits, which means the financial impact hasn't hit us ...yet.

The reason we say "blessing in disguise" is because it has allowed us to spend many wonderful days together as a family. We had never had a prolonged time to spend together just the three of us as most of our family leave time was spent going through the adoption process in Russia. We had also adjusted our schedules so we didn't need to leave Roman with a babysitter, but that meant that we didn't have a single day off together! 

Rich has been doing some freelance work. He continued to direct Portland Timbers games for FSN and has filled in on all sorts of positions in Seahawks, Sounders, Husky football, volleyball and Everett Silvertips hockey. Right now, we are enjoying spending time together, just us ... the Brit, the Russian, and the American.

Rockin' Preschooler (Roman's impression of Angus Young)

Dawson and Roman at the zoo ... hey, is his half bigger?

 The "Russian Rascals" Luke, Polina, and Roman.


Mommy: Taz has gone to doggy heaven to be with Missy

Roman: Mommy, where is doggy heaven?

Mommy: It's a long long way away sweetie

Roman: Is it near Portland?


Mommy: Perhaps you'll get married when you're a grownup.

Roman: Yeah, I'm going to marry Polina ... and Luke

Mommy: Luke?

Roman: Yes, he has lots of cool cars!


1 comment:

Renee Anne said...

Love it! And it was good to see pictures of Gary and Linda (and Bekke, too). I'm sad that no one could make it for the wedding...I'm not even sure if Gerald and Lois made it and they live here in town (but I think they were out of town for that weekend).

So, seriously, when are you all going to come visit us in the frozen tundra that is Wisconsin?! Okay, maybe wait until summer...but seriously, you need to come back here.

~ Renee ~