Creepy cool.

We have lived in our Portland house for about 1 1/2 years now. We are really loving the neighborhood and it seems I love it a little more each time I go out exploring. We are so close to fantastic restaurants, coffee shops, theater, local businesses, resale stores.....and the cemetery. Lone Fir cemetery is one of the oldest Pioneer cemeteries in Oregon, has a great history, and it is 1/2 block from home.

It began in 1854 when a man, Stephens, sold his farm to someone with the agreement that his father's grave could remain there and the new owner would maintain the site. Later that same year there was a boiler explosion on a steamship owned by the new farm owner. Ten people were killed and he buried all of them near the original owners father. In 1866, 20 more acres were added to the current location. Portland investors acquired it and sold plots for $10 each. In the beginning, there was one "lone fir" tree. Over the years, families have planted seedlings in memory of their deceased and the cemetery has become this garden-like sanctuary with huge trees everywhere. The estimate is that there are now about 25,000 known and about 10,0000 unknown people buried there including thousands of Chinese immigrants. I don't know how many headstones are there now, but most of the graves must be unmarked. Many of the old wooden markers were destroyed over the years.

We like to take the kids for walks in the "graveyard" as there is always something new to see. I know that is a little morbid, but they really enjoy it. There are wonderful mausoleums and headstones. People were much more clever about their headstones way back when. The big ones are grand and the people seem important, but I fancy the more humble ones. There are still 1500 plots left for sale.

On Halloween a group of people, http://www.friendsoflonefircemetery.org/tour.html,
reenact the lives and deaths of the dead. The even got Portland artists to write songs and record a CD to benefit the cemetery.

Carson took all the photos except for the one she is in. We think we may try to volunteer there as a family. I am trying to find out what they may need.


Inauguration Day is here!

I kept Carson home to watch the inauguration this morning since I wasn't sure she would see it at school. I love that she has no idea how historic this is. She knows it is a big deal because we told her, but the Obama's are just another family with little girls to her. She told me about learning the story of MLK Jr. at school and really can't believe that segregation could have been possible. I really think that kids today appreciate that people come from different places and have different shades of skin. If you are good, then you are good. Period! End of story. So on that note......

(she made flags for all of us to wave)

"George Bush meant to do the right thing, but it wasn't right for us. He meant well".

"She (Laura Bush) really does look like grandma judy".

Re: GHWB: "Is he a little bit better than his son"?

"MLK Jr.'s dream really did come true on the day after his birthday many many many (i lost count of the many's) years later.

Re: Michelle Obama's mother living in the white house. "It must be fun to have your grandma live with you".

And my favorite! During Rick Warren's invocation he said something regarding Goodwill to all. Carson kept giggling and saying, "Goodwill, like the store". "That is so funny he said Goodwill".


"When I grow up I want to be Barack Obama"!

"She looks like a diamond ring". (Michelle Obama)


Change IS coming.

It happened. Carson is officially a big kid. We cleaned her room today and she decided to send all of her dress up clothes to Maggie and Rowan. Everything that was dress up, princess-like, even her Fairytopia Barbies are packed in a huge box and going back to Denver. She had a huge clear canister of "little things"~wind-up toys, rubber bugs, little people, etc. which she handed over to her little brother. She didn't even open it to pick out a few favorites. I realize this means I have to start treating her more like the big kid that she is. WOW! I even cried a little. But not as much as Rachel will when she gets that huge box of frilly sparkly pink!