Portland, Oregon: For the past three summers we have returned to our home in Portland with the best intentions of down-sizing in preparation to sell this monster of a house. Every year we arrive from Indio and begin to empty files and closets… but then, we need to return to Los Angeles for a ballet recital, a party, a track meet in Beijing, a track meet in London, a track meet in Eugene, a track meet in Sacramento… well, you get the idea. We get side-tracked.

No pun intended.

If we are ever going to get our home ready to sell, we need to spend time here. Empty every drawer, cupboard, closet, shelf and wall. This is the year. We missed the USA Track & Field Championships. We missed a wedding in Massachusetts. We are not even going to the World Track & Field Championships in Doha. Thing is, it is just too easy to postpone packing/purging, as we find other things to distract us.

Not this summer. This summer we are focused. So focused, indeed, we are now nearly ready to move. Anything remaining in our house will go with us. As mentioned previously, we have no idea where we are moving, we just know we can’t stay here.

Before we hit the road to nowhere, Lisa and the kids came up for one-last visit to the family homestead. It was so wonderful to see them! We had not seen our grandchildren since early June (Lucy’s ballet recital). This is the longest we have spent away from them – another victim of our move-or-else quest. We FaceTime nearly daily, but nothing can replace a grandchild on your lap.

Dave and I had a towncar fetch us this afternoon to take us to Portland International Airport (#1 in American, again). Our only luggage was a car seat. The driver dropped us at the car rental area where we picked-up a massive Chevy Suburban, Dave spent twenty minutes installing the car seat, and we drove the car over to arrivals and fetched Lisa, Lenny, Leo and Lucy.

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Leo turned eight on Friday (no, we were not there for his LA beach party), except it seems to us Leo somehow turned 12? 13? on Friday. He is all hip and sophisticated now, with his pleather jacket (no problem that it was 90° in Portland today) and flashing his Ray-Bans. Leo is an El-Lay Boy through-and through. Too cool for school.

We rushed home, brought-in luggage, changed clothing, and headed out to dinner to Mingo with my sister, Renee, and Lisa’s godmother, Nancy. While at dinner, we were able to FaceTime with Renee’s daughter, Carla, currently stationed on the Marine base on Okinawa. Highlight of the night!

Renee snapped a lot of photos of her grand-niece/nephew:

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Nothing makes me happier than Lucy or Leo on my lap. Thank you, Renee, for taking these wonderful photos. We will be in Portland for a few days, but then head out to visit more relatives.

Dave and I are taking a ten-day vacation from packing. I will be updating along the way (via my iPad). Come along if you can.

Until my next update, I remain, your happy correspondent.

 

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