Biking Benefits

Today Benji and I got to do two fun things because we ride a bike for the commute to/from preschool. I’m going to throw in a third related vignette for good measure, but these stories are practically infinite.

1. On the way there, a large work van went by and we saw it had a picture of a forklift on the side. We speculated about whether that meant there were, in fact, forklifts inside the truck/van/thing (Benji was all for this theory).

A little way down the road, there was the van, pulled over on our side of the road. I asked Benji if he wanted to stop and ask if there were forklifts inside, and he really did. So we pulled over next to the truck, the driver rolled down his window, and I asked (Benji was too shy and incomprehensible). Continue Reading >>

Rain Garden, 2015

Well, poo. I just wrote a long, elaborate post about the rain garden and it got deleted by accident. That stinks.

As I was saying… Our rain garden is now in its fourth summer, a season it doesn’t like much. Summer is hot, dry, and sunny, all things not much beloved of native Washington plants. Many of the ferns suffer quite a bit, barely surviving. They need more cool shade, being understory plants.

Ferns suffering from too much sunny, dry weather.

Huckleberry barely hanging on.

The below is the last little leafy twig on a much larger, mostly dead plant that got cooked last summer, and is also prey to predation by bunnies.
image Continue Reading >>

A Little Trespassing

Today mom, Benji, and I toddled 3/4 of a mile to our nearest construction site, where they’re building a new braided on-ramp system at the freeway by our house. This has remained a steady source of truck-related entertainment for a long time, but they are finally moving away from the secondary road and out of easy sight. This means we have to take increasingly drastic actions to see the trucks… Including, in this case, going into the third floor of an empty building and looking out those windows. Continue Reading >>

An Idea

I have an idea, and I’d like to hear what y’all think about it, and if you’d participate.

Here’s the background: I love bikes. You all know that. But when I’m in a social group, I tend to not talk much about biking, or keep it to a very brief mention, because I know that 99% of people don’t like geeking out on bikes nearly as much as I do. Out of respect for social mores against being boring and dominating the conversation, I don’t talk about biking much. I suspect that most people have a hobby, interest, or passion that they don’t bring up much in social settings, for similar reasons. Continue Reading >>

What I Want to Know

… Why does Benji play by himself the best when he’s pooping?

… Why are some foods delicious one day and unspeakable the next?

Benji now says “One more very last (item; i.e., story)” and if you say yes, he immediately says, “Two more.” Then if you say yes to that, he says, “Six more.” Why must we negotiate every single thing? -I think I actually know the answer to that: Because he’s two, almost three, and that’s what kids that age do. Continue Reading >>

What’s Next?

Benji has been going to a pre-preschool, Stepping Stones, at Kindering since January, receiving early intervention in motor and speech. This is mostly paid for by the state (our taxes at work!) as part of what’s called “early intervention.” The goal is to help kids be ready to succeed when they reach kindergarten by fixing issues while they’re very young. Benji has made huge leaps, especially in language use especially, but somewhat also in physical skills.

This has worked really well for us, but the kids age out of early intervention at age 3, a milestone rapidly approaching for us. The therapists have evaluated Benji and confirmed that he’s within the normal range for motor and speech now — which is great! What a huge improvement! The only area Benji qualifies is in articulation, meaning how well he enunciates what he says. Right now he talks a lot, using relatively complex ideas, but most people can’t understand much of what he’s saying – that is, even less than you’d expect for a kid his age. Little kids do tend to be pretty incomprehensible. Continue Reading >>



It should take about 2 seconds fit the laundry to dry today; it’s in the mid-80s in the shade, but our porch is easily 10 to 20 degrees hotter, thanks to the sun reflecting off the house and deck. Add in a nice breeze and you get perfect laundry-drying conditions. The only downside is having to get baked myself, standing out to hang things up.

The rest of the yard is pretty sunny, except for the shady corner I’m sitting in, thanks to a tall and leafy poplar tree in the neighbor’s yard. Continue Reading >>