July 1, 2004

Summer's here!

Katelyn had a great ending to her 1st grade year, meeting or exceeding all criteria for her grade level. She's returning back to Spring Valley School, where she went for kindergarten, now that we've moved into that neighborhood. She's spending the summer at the place that provides after-school care, A Child's Way. It's a great summer program, with swimming and field trips every week. She's also continuing her piano lessons: Grandma Adrien, her teacher, says she's doing really well.

Haley continues at Hoover Children's Center in Millbrae. She's in her last year there, moving into the Pre-K group. She's amazingly independent, fierce, headstrong, temperamental, smart, and incredibly sweet when she wants to be. Hmmm, that all sounds familiar... :-)

Both kids are in weekly swimming lessons, and doing great!

My job at Oracle continues to be lots of fun, and an incredible amount of work. I've just gotten approval to hire two people, so that's great. And it looks like we're going to have actual raises this year - the first time since 2001. I just recently got my 10-year award gift. You get to pick from a selection, and I got a telescope. So far we've just tried out looking at simple things at the lowest power, but already it's fun.

Val also continued to work very hard. Her "to-do" list at work is waaaay too long, which causes her endless frustrations. At least she enjoys the people she works with, and a lot of the work.

Our really big news is that Mom has found a place! She bought a 2-bedroom mobile home in Morgan Hill, about an hour away. It's really nice, and she'll take possession in a couple of weeks. There's some interior work to be done, but she hopes to be moved in sometime in August. We'll certainly miss her, but we'll all be happy to not be living on top of one another.

Speaking of "building", we've now applied for our building permits and hope to actually start construction within a month. Fingers crossed.

Let's see, what other things have we been up to since the last writing??

We went to Susan's for Passover, April 10 & 11.

Val & I went to see Judy Small in concert on 4/17.

Val & I went to Arizona for 5 days, April 24-29. Pictures coming soon (just have to get them all organized).

On May 8, Val and I took the kids to Pescadero Beach. We had a very fun time. Katelyn found a big rock, and Haley got all dirty. Later that day we went to visit Val's ex-boss Margaret in San Mateo.

On May 9, Val & I went to Gavin and Nelee's for dinner, and admired a particularly interesting-looking flower.

We had a little medical crises the first week in May. Somehow Haley got a small piece of metal in her eye. After repeated attempts to remove it, she had to go under a general anesthetic to have it done. It only took a few minutes, but the prep (checkups, etc) and the aftercare (eye patch, drops) were quite an ordeal. Luckily she came through it well, and has no ill effects.

Mom went on a 12-day cruise to Alaska in May, then took a trip up to Susan's and another trip to Tahoe with Joel's mother. She was travelin'!!

On May 22, Val and the kids and I went down to SoCal to visit Nana Frances, and had a brief visit to Knott's Berry Farm.

On May 30, I attended Fat Fest, sponsored by NAAFA, and conducted a (poorly attended) workshop on Raising Fat-Friendly Kids.

On June 5 we had lunch over Glynis & Susan's, and admired their new shed, which will be Glynis's art studio. The next day we had dinner over Jennifer & Selena's.

On June 13, Val & I celebrated our 3-year anniversary. We had a quiet dinner at a local restaurant, Kuleto's.

On June 18 Val & I flew to Seattle, and the next day attended the wedding of her two friends Justin and Casey. They'd actually gotten legally married in Vancouver back in April, and then had this private ceremony at their home. This was my first time meeting them. What great people, and they had wonderfully interesting friends.

We came back and just an hour or so later, my friend Pam and I met Susan and Lee at the Pacific Procession drum and bugle corps show in Hayward. I spent 3 years in drum corps when I was younger (1977 and 1978 with the Anaheim Kingsmen, and 1981 with the Sacramento Freelancers), but it's still a big part of me and I miss being involved in it. Perhaps when the kids are older I'll get involved in a senior corps.

The last couple of weeks we've been getting estimates to have some trees removed from the backyard, some in preparation for construction, some because they're dead.

This week we had a visit from James D'Ambrosio, an interior designer. I got a one-hour consultation at a silent auction a few months ago.

We had a dinner visit from Maureen, our former neighbor on Diamond Ave, last Wednesday the 23rd.

On the 26th of June, Terry Roberts and her daughter Carmen came over for a fun hang-out afternoon at the house. After that, Val & I went to see a collection of films, Fun in Girls' Shorts, at Frameline 28, the Lesbian/Gay Film Festival. We especially had to go because Val's good friend Jason made one of the films, Flower Arranging For Beginners. When we came out of the Roxie theater, there was the Dyke March, so of course we sat and watched for a while - lots of fun!

The next morning, on the 27th, we rode in the women's motorcycle contingent at the Pride Parade. I rode Katelyn, Kathie rode Joanie and Haley, and Glynis and Susan rode with us. Great fun!! Val stayed home with Jennifer & Selena and watched it all on TV. Afterwards we had a fun summer BBQ and played games.

On Wednesday the 30th, Val participated in a usability test at Oracle, on a product I'm designing. She was one of the favorite test subjects!

Well, that's all for now. We're about to celebrate the long weekend - and definitely looking forward to it!!