The girls are here!

I was trying to recall when exactly we decided we were going to get backyard ducks. I always thought it would be cool to have chickens. Their colored eggs are very beautiful. But my knowledge of farming is lacking, although I don’t mind getting my hands dirty.

I remember at Thanksmas in San Diego Ryan gave me the book “Ducks Eggs Daily” by Lisa Steele. After I got the book, I read it and thought to myself this is getting real.

Fast forward here it is about to be spring and if we are going to do this the time is now to place your order. We look at the calendar and try to figure out the best date for them to arrive. Metzger Farms is where the girls were ordered from and they have a date that works for us.

It’s pretty slick how the process works. The ducks hatch on a Monday and they ship them USPS priority mail that same day. In that day though the birds get sexted too before they are shipped. It seems like a fascinating operation to get all that taken care of in one day. I’ve read too specifically with Welsh Harlequins you can sext them by beak color on the first day but then others have refuted that theory. From what we could find Metzger is the only farm that does sext their ducks. Since we are essentially city kitties having a drake around might be too much.

April 17th they hatch. April 19th the ducks arrive at the USPS post office. I wake up that day, log-in and see through the tracking the ducks were already delivered to Camas from California at 6:45M. I wake Ryan up EXCITEDLY telling him the girls are there. Ryan heads up to the post office.  I wake Lucy up too so she can be ready too see them when Ryan gets home.

Right when he gets them he reports hearing little chirps. I think to myself “they are alive”. It seems like a crazy practice to ship birds in the mail but apparently it really is quite commonplace.

Ryan pulls up and the ducks are here! We are very excited to open the box. Drum Roll!!!!!

Ducks Arrival

They are so sweet and so, so tiny!


The girls are getting settled in. I read to make sugar water for them to encourage them to drink but I didn’t. I was assuming the girls would come without any food or water but they did have this green gel stuff that must have been sustainable enough. They didn’t have any problems eating or drinking right away. Some info says to not give them food until after an hour of water, but we had it all in there and everything was ok.

This paint tray Ryan used in the brooder is ingenious. I cannot imagine how dirty the brooder box would get if we didn’t have that. More info to come.


This girl Ollie claimed  and named her Quackers, you can see why.


Lucy could not wait to hold one. We left them alone in the morning to make sure they got used to their surroundings and were able to relax after their journey from California but soon enough Lucy was in the mix holding her girl “Fuzzy”. Fuzzy is really beautiful. She has a peach colored beak and might be a different color from the other two. Right now she is coming off as the more dominant lady in the pack.



I am very excited for this duck adventure!






Happy May!

As I type this on our “no plans” weekend, the early morning sun is beaming in.  Nice way to kick off May!

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When I was a kid I remember getting immersed in a chapter book and reading for hours at a time. I loved a good book. I fondly remember reading the old Nancy Drew set that was my moms and really loved every one of those mystery stories. Some other elementary readers that stand out are the Sweet Valley Twins, the Babysitters Club,  and the Ramona Quimby books. It’s cool knowing now there are some Ramona references in Portland streets and landmarks.  During Ollie’s kindergarten year he has become a really good reader. Now that he can read he reads everything in his surroundings and is so observant and inquisitive. It’s been a neat transformation.  Our little reader has found a book he loves and read on his own. The series is called Secret Agent Jack Stalwart. Ollie is a big fan.

Ollie loves sports but his all time favorite seems to be basketball. He and I were lucky to go to the Trailblazers play off game this week and the Blazer’s won! It’s a tradition to get face painting before the game and on the way Ollie told me he wanted a special play off design. During the game he took a selfie of his design (unprompted). These kids they just know selfies. He also convinced the Carolyn and I to get our faces painted too.

This week we had a bike to school day with Ollie’s school pal Greyden, his mom and little bro Garrett who is Lucy’s age.  The boys celebrated Earth Day at school with a walking field trip to the park. Ollie said to me “Mom, can we ride my bike to school? When we use our car it puts pollution in the air”. On the way home there was a stop off to count the mosaic stones and another stop at the book box.

Lucy’s class room has an awesome larger than life springtime butterfly decoration!

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Lucy’s school also had a bug picnic lunch this week. Most of the days she is not at school when they have special outings but she happened to go this week and she was beyond thrilled. A packed lunch was picnic and I secretly think she was thrilled because Ollie gets to take a school a packed lunch everyday.  On Sunday Lucy said “I want pees, apples,  grapes in my lunch”. When I went to tuck her in that night she had already packed her pees in her lunch box in her room! Wednesday night before the picnic she had picked out a special picnic outfit and when she woke in the morning she popped out of bed and got dressed. This girl usually likes to stay in her jammies.

We also enjoyed a nice dinner with Grandma and Papa. I made this Mario Battalli pasta recipe. It was so good except prosciutto was substituted for pancetta. This change made for a lively discussion with Ryan and my dad. Dessert was at Flash Freeze. Pretty magical there!


In not so good news, it turns out if you have mild tooth pain for a year it might mean you have an infection brewing.  Even though it doesn’t hurt yes another root canal is in order.  I guess the black spaces on the x-ray are where the bone has been eroded away but the good news is bone does regenerate.

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Springtime with the Kids

Springtime is here! We have enjoyed colorful walks and bike rides to school, even some legitamate short days. Spring break has come and gone, the school year is waning down.  It’s been wonderful being outside more.


Our life recently.

A stop off in Hood River to see Uncle Matt on our way home from Sun River. It’s a perfect day for collecting rocks from the Columbia River. WHEW-lots of rivers going on here!

Curly hair after rocking braids for 4 days. Everybody is happy with braids, it’s the best kind of ski hair and no brushing needed for days!


Lucy’s had an idea to paint the rocks she collected. The plan was set into motion. She squirted the paints onto the plate so carefully and painted away. She painted a gold one. This ones “for you mommy” in her sweet little voice. She was so excited to invite our neighbor over to paint with her.

I love my days off with Lucy. Each one is different. We both enjoy staying at home. Most recently I had the honor of being a student to Teacher Lucy.





Time for your Check-Up

Lucy’s favorite show these days is Disney’s “Doc McStuffins”. She loves, loves, loves it. Lately she has been waking up every day wanting to watch “Doc”.

Doc is a elementary school “doctor” who brings her animals to life. She gives them “check-ups”, offers the animals practical wellness tips like the important of good sleep, eating well, being kind to others, etc.   Lucy loves her animals immensely-her favorites right now include her 2 piggies, her 2 bunnies and of course Booka!  It is her pretty much her favorite activity to organize, play and talk to her animals.







On the airport shuttle
On the airport shuttle


Camas Papermakers

Tonight Ollie, Lucy and I were driving home from Grandma and Grandpa Parkers. We had gone to see the lighting of the Christmas tree downtown, then finished up watching the Oregon Ducks game. On the way home we passed by Camas High School. Ollie excitedly said “One day I am going to be a Papermaker and play football there”. I told him how there are a lot more opportunities too in school like soccer, running (like our next door neighbor/babysitter Alyssa), swimming”. Ollie stopped me and said “YAY-swimming, I want to swim too!! I’ll do 3 things there”. So I asked him what the third one was besides football and swimming. He said, “I want to be a scientist too, I love science!”

Ollie is usually pretty hush, hush about the happenings at school. But then he went on to tell me  about his new friend Emmett at school. I asked who Emmett was and he said the boy I was sitting next to when you picked me up from school yesterday. He said “Emmett is my friend and I was lucky to sit by him at the table.” So cute!

Occasionally Ollie really spills the beans about school and I was lucky tonight was one of those nights!

Here is the little scientist in action with his archaeology and volcano making kit Ryan bought him at the end of the summer.

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Having fun around the house..


And a fun visit from the Aunts, watching Lucy’s favorite movie “Frozen”.


The boys and the girls

It was a slightly irregular day around the house because it was just Lucy and I. Her favorite activity around the house lately is playing with all her animals. She will have them host parties where they each line up on a step or she will line them up and give them a bowl, a domino, a wooden robot, whatever she can find. Lucy sometimes gets a little frustrated when they won’t stand up but she really, really enjoys her animals. It seems like the pink ones are her favorite. Today she said to me “Mama will you come have a snack with me and the boys”. I had never heard to her refer to her animals as boys but I went with it. She had them all set up on the big dining room table and here is what I found. It was lion, Mickey and a bear.


Usually at her animal parties all the pink and white ones are there. I didn’t see them at all at our “party”. Finally I realized she was calling the boys her non-pink, non-girly stuffed animals. After we were done I asked her where the girls were and off course they were all together in the living room hiding behind the sofa. She ran back there to show me.

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We had a merry time all afternoon playing with her animals!


There goes Fall!

A beautiful local spot in fall (which used to be super close to our old house) is Vancouver Lake Park. I just love going there. The leaves are really beautiful there and with the blue sky, the lake and the leaves, it’s such a picturesque little spot. Plus, it has bonus sidewalks which are great for little ones bike riding and a great little play structure.

I was off on Tuesday and heard the forecast was going to be windy then get cold. It was blue skies too which was a plus.   When we got there the wind gusts were just about equal to the temperature. It was super breezy and brrr chilly! I was glad we went though because with the wind gusts all the leaves were blowing off the trees and it’s great to see some fall color on the trees and on the ground. We had a great time though and the kids were pumped up for the cold weather and falling leaves!

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