Gavin is Fifteen!

We celebrated Gavin’s birthday with my parents and sister and her boyfriend. We made lasagna for dinner and chocolate cupcakes with raspberry frosting. We brought Gavin’s nerf arsenal over to my parents and Chris and Lilah and Gavin snuck around and tried to ambush each other with rainbow darts while my sister helped me set up a scavenger hunt for his gifts. I tried hard to make up difficult clues to locations but almost without fail, the kids figured them out so quickly! Lilah has requested a scavenger hunt for her birthday and I will need to make it much sneakier and harder. One of the clues was Search in wintry terrain to lead to the snowball bush and Lilah knew instantly what it meant! Gavin immediately figured out that Imagine you are very tired and need a boost. Where would you look? was leading to where the lawn mower battery is kept.

At fifteen, Gavin’s favorite genre is Science Fiction. His favorite board game is Terraforming Mars. His favorite band is Blacklight District or Gothic Storm. He can often be found with his phone playing music around the house. In fact, I usually know he’s on his way by the arrival of his music.

He loves MineCraft and Lego and Dungeons & Dragons. He loves playing online with his friends since he can’t see them in person over the summer.

Some of his goals for the year are to build a computer, learn how to drive, hang out with his friends as much as he can. In the future he wants to be a programmer, a game tester or game designer.

His choice for president is Not Trump. Maybe Obama again.

Something he thinks needs changing is someone to lead our country who knows what they’re doing and more research about how to stop the Covid pandemic.

He’s 5 feet and 6 inches tall which means he’s nearly as tall as I am now, but not quiiiiite. He has had the same hairstyle for several years now: one side shaved short and the other about chin length.

The pandemic has been very hard for him because he hasn’t been able to hang out with friends. He says that it’s kind of scary to think that friends or family might get sick or die.

His favorite books are End Game, The Calling by James Frey or The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins. His favorite movies are Nausicaa and Guardians of Ga’Hoole.

He has a laugh that carries across the house. He loves animals, especially owls. He doesn’t like quiet time. He always gets holes in his socks. His voice is changing. He dances to his music when no one is watching. He gets out board games at 7 a.m. and plays them solo. He likes Beyond Burgers a lot. He can identify a blue jay from its screech and he asks me how I’m doing or feeling several times each day since my leg injury. He’s always ready for a game.




a long strange summer

This summer has been odd. Partly it’s because the corona virus pandemic has kept us home and away from places we’d go and friends we’d see. Partly it’s because in early June I fractured my tibia and have been recovering since which involves a whole lot of sitting around and waiting to heal.

My family has been so supportive and helpful and I’ve been well cared for but we would all have preferred to do things differently this summer in so many ways.

We’ve played a bunch of board games in my bedroom and read and read and read. Lilah has stitched her unicorn hoodie and painted and knit and screen printed a cat on a backpack and sewn me a special bag so I can carry things on my crutches.

Gavin has done chemistry experiments and done sudoku and planned his computer building class.

I’ve done some painting and lots and lots of reading. We’ve watched the quail families wandering through the yard and watched the apples grow and the beans climb the trellis tunnel. We’ve watched the orioles and the hummingbirds visit the flowers and the feeders. We embroidered a fox and a shield and swords onto some velvet bags to give friends. Most of all of these activities have been in my bedroom to include me in things.

We harvested edible flowers and herbs and baked rolls with dill, chives, rosemary and lavender topped with flowers. We made a mandala with items from our yard.

We watched fireworks with my parents and listened to a sprinkler hitting a pipe and making the most magical noise and slid down the railings afterward.

We went to the lake for an afternoon and the kids swam, Chris and I paddled in an inflatable kayak that I was able to get my leg into and we found and tried to help some baby birds. Lilah carried them off of the hot cement and put them in shady places under the trees nearby.

In the past couple of weeks I’ve finally been able to get out a little bit more and so Chris and I have been up the mountain to see flowers and deer and out toward the lake to see birds. Our yard is lovely but it’s so wonderful to get out into the wider world! I even got to use my macro lens some. Mother Nature dresses well!

On weekends we’ve been able to get together with my family to chat with masks on and from a distance. This week my parents got out this foosball like game and the kids loved it. Another favorite has been a bucket of water with old rags to wet and then throw at targets. Once Lilah was throwing backwards and the rag ever so gently alighted right on top of my dad’s head. It was hilarious. She’s tried since to repeat that magical moment but it’s not so easy.


This week I’ve finally felt well enough to try yoga asanas again. It’s been two months and I can’t put weight on my right leg so it’s extremely limited but it feels so good to move my body more. Next week I can begin to walk with half weight on my leg and crutches.

I’m looking forward to a whole lot more adventuring outside soon!