Saturday, July 31, 2010

Aussie Adventures/Aussiseikkailuja

There is proof that The Captain is alive and well, and not swallowed up by computers, phones and the internet: "Working on the Australia project during day and working on regular East Coast projects at night - works out well time wise!" Of course, I may need some proof that the man is getting some sleep at some point too...

PS. Isn't that koala cute!? And I previously thought that kangaroos are really adorable. I have changed my opinion. There is something very rodent-ish about them... Giant rodent-ish.. Don't you think?


Kapteeni on parhaillaan työmatkalla Australiassa. Näiden kuvien perusteella mies ei ole pelkästään paiskimassa töitä kuten puhelimessa kuulosti: "Australia-projektia päivisin, öisin normaalitöitä itärannikon aikavyöhykkeellä!" Suloinen koala, mutta kenguru ei olekaan niin suloinen mitä olin kuvitellut!? Jotain jättimäisrottamaista otuksessa...

Thursday, July 29, 2010

A Little Bit of Nantucket & Then On

Great beach time (especially Surfside!!), a wonderful walk to 'Sconset, Sankaty Head & Brandt Point lighthouses (couldn't get very close to Great Point lighthouse, the beach was closed), family & friends, cobblestones and Cobbletones, grey houses with white trim, downtown charm and walks to the harbor. A wonderful few weeks on Nantucket Island!

We got home about a week ago, only to turn around and do our disappearing act again: The Captain flew to Australia, the big kids packed their camp bags again, and Little Miss & I flew for a quick trip to my sister's house. So fun to spend time with Sis & her family, especially since we got to meet & hold 3-week old Little Princess! Bliss!!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Foggy, Misty Island Evening/Sumuinen saari-ilta

After a hot and muggy week, today's fog and drizzly rain felt very refreshing and inviting. After dinner the kiddos and I bundled up in our rain gear, and off we went in search of some much needed exercise and fresh air.

There is something quite beautiful and mysterious about being surrounded by the island fog. I love how it mutes the already gray colors of this island, and draws out the warm lights, making the scenery look very much like a Thomas Kinkade painting.

On our way back home we stop to listen the Cobbletones singing a cappella. We were pretty soaked already so we only stayed for one song (I hope this link works to listen to them sing, my video turned out pretty quiet because of the rain. If it doesn't, just click on their Facebook page and check out their videos there.)

The library had closed (much to Missy's disappointment), so we turned our way home up India Street, ready for some dry warm clothes and a cup of hot cocoa.


Kuvia sumuiselta iltakävelyltä Nantucketin saarelta. Koko viikon on ollut tuskaisen kuumaa ja kosteaa, joten tämän päivän viileä sumu ja sade ilahdutti ja virkistytti! Lähdimme kovin märälle iltakävelylle napsien näitä kuvia. Keskustassa pysähdyimme kuuntelemaan Cobblestones- a cappella laulua, mutta vain hetkeksi - olimme jo aika märkiä ja oli aika kääntyä takaisin kotiin kuivien vaatteiden ja kuuman kaakaon luokse. Ihastuttava saari - jopa sadepäivänä!

Joseph Conrad Sailing Camp/Purjehdusleiri

One of our Summer activities was an overnight sailing camp for our big kids. It was held at Mystic Seaport in Connecticut, and the campers got to sleep aboard Joseph Conrad. You can read more about the camp at the Mystic Seaport website. We highly recommend this fantastic camp to all tweens and teens!

Also, a plug for our RV readers (and others too): We picked up the kids in the Mothership, which turned out great. The parking lot had several bus/RV parking spots near the main entrance with free parking. (Members get free admission also.) After we hauled all their gear into the RV, we were able to freshen up, get cold drinks, use our own bathroom, take a break, then went back into the museum area to take a wander around a bit more. If you are in the area, definitely stop in for a day or two to tour this interesting 19th-century coastal village with their historic ships. (And no, we don't get paid for this advertisement :)

The collage above is made of photos from last year's camp (click larger). It was the first time our kids had gone to an overnight camp, and we, the controlling overprotecting concerned parents actually returned to camp midweek to spy check our kids were alive ok. We altered our looks to blend in with the Mystic Seaport visitors, so our kids wouldn't notice us. And they didn't! They had no clue we were there, tee hee. (Ok, ok, I admit the Captain was a draggee (sp?) on this endeavor.)

This year I didn't even go to drop the kids off, and had to write notes to remember to think about pray for them. Forget about sending them mail - well, did send letters to everyone, but they didn't make it on time... The kids did great! Mama did great! We'll plan to be there again next year! (Or some of us will.)


Yksi kesämme ohjelmista oli purjehdusleiri isommille lapsille. Viime vuonna he olivat samalla leirillä ensimmäistä kertaa, mikä oli myös heidän ensimmäinen kerta olla öitä leirillä myös. Ylläolevasta kollaasista näkee kuvia viime vuodelta, me vanhemmat kävimme vakoilemassa loppuviikosta kuinka leiriläiset jaksoivat. Tänä vuonna en mennyt edes mukaan viemään lapsia leirille (piti siivota taloa) ja piti muistutella itseään rukoilemaan lasten puolesta. Kaikki meni hyvin, jokaisella oli hauskaa, joten yritämme mennä samalle leirille myös ensi kesänä!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Making Waves/Aaltojen tekemistä

My nutty creative in-law family has started a crazy fantastic tradition on Nantucket Island. When friends and family leave the island, the remaining crew waves good-bye from Brandt Point Lighthouse. (A perfect spot as departing travelers come to the deck to throw their pennies as the boat rounds the lighthouse - a penny thrown at the right spot ensures a return to the island. And then they see The Wave too!)

Yesterday Grandma, Grandpa, Aunt, Uncle & cousins left the island and it was our turn to kiss and hug everyone, wave good-bye and then race to the lighthouse. We had to practice a little at first. Down! Up! Down! Up! Wave to the right! Wave to the left! (Wiggle the fingers!) Wave to the right! Wave to the left! Down! Up! Again!! I sure hope we looked a bit better than in this pic when the boat actually was passing.

Waiting... Waiting.. Here comes the boat!!!

And they see us!! I can spy my brother-in-law with a camera, so maybe we can get a photo of our perfectly synchronized wave from the boat and add it here later.

Good-Bye!!! We already miss you!!!!!

And we had five moping children return to the house, so very sad their cousins left.


Mieheni perhe on aloittanut hauskan tradition Nantucketin saarella. Kun ystävät ja sukulaiset lähtevät saarelta, taaksejäävät heiluttavat Brandt Point-majakalta heille. Eilen lähtivät mieheni vanhemmat ja sisko perheineen pois saarelta, joten meidän perhe kiiruhti satamasta majakalle heiluttamaan. Eikä vain heiluttamaan, vaan me teemme aaltoja: Alas! Ylös! Heiluta oikealle! Heiluta Vasemmalle! Heiluta oikealle! Heiluta Vasemmalle! Alas! Ylös! Toista miljoona kertaa! Miehen siskon mies otti kuvia lautalta, ehkäpä saamme häneltä kuvan meistä majakan kivillä heiluttamassa. Jos saamme, niin laitan sen sitten tänne.

Nyt meiltä löytyy viisi surullista lasta, ikävöiden serkkujaan.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Eating Like An Animal (Post By The Captain)

We try to stress the importance of table manners, but during 4th of July watermelon eating contest, manners often take a back seat as one of our children is transformed into a total watermelon eating machine. You won't believe which one.

Each contestant gets a full half slice of watermelon about 2 inches thick. Our contestant is quite a bit smaller than the rest, but when the eating starts, juice flies as our 11 year old Missy claws and scrapes her way to victory. The big muscle guys in the final round don't even know that they have no chance of winning.

How does she do it? Using both hands she attacks the melon, compressing the red part and stuffs it down her throat in about 15 seconds. Kids, don't try this at home with mom or dad watching.

Most years since she was 6 she brought home the first place watermelon to share with the rest of us.

She has talent

Each year the towns people take the antique fire engines out of the museums to meet the fire department for a water battle at high-noon.

Photos courtesy of Robert Peek Photography

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy Independence Day!!

Happy 4th of July to Everyone! It has been quite strange to have our family split on a Holiday weekend, I think our first ever.

Living in a house with a For Sale sign in the front, we have been keeping the house very tidy, in case there is a showing. Today, being the Independence Day of USA, was the first morning I didn't put my jammies away or clean up Little Miss' books, thinking Who Would Be Looking At Houses On 4th of July???. But wouldn't you know it, it was the first time this week there actually was a showing! And since our realtor's office thought we were on Nantucket, they didn't call first.

Graciously our realtor and her client offered to come back in two weeks, but all we needed was 10 minutes, so the they waited for us to madly dash our belongings inside dressers and cabinets and to evacuate the house. As Little Miss was putting her flip-flops on, I quickly took a look at the basement to make sure all was ok. The door was open to the porch (where the prospective buyer was waiting with our realtor) when Little Miss yells down to the basement: "Are you checking on the stinky room?"

There may or may not have been a stinky issue in the basement. But even if there had been, it would have definitely been taken care of this week. I can just imagine the sniffing that went on for the rest of the house showing...!

Gardens are looking great! This was another huge accomplishment as 5ennie does not care for yard work. Especially in a yard that will hopefully soon belong to a new owner. Also, the flowers were really expensive! We could have added a lot more, but this will do for now, and it all looks much better.

So that was our 4th of July, represented by the foreign side of our family. (I can't wait for the action pics from Nantucket, possibly even a blog post by The Captain! Stay tuned...). We had my mom, a Finn on a vacation here in the US, my Chinese born daughter with an American citizenship, and I - a resident alien from outer space Finland, here, celebrating the Independence Day of this great country. And waiting for news of a little niece/cousin/granddaughter being born. Looks like it won't be the 4th - that would have been a cool day to be born ;-)

Saturday, July 3, 2010

What A Week/Mikä viikko!!!

We received an unexpected blessing last Friday: my mom came from Finland to help my sister with her new baby (& two toddlers). Except the baby (still!) hasn't been born, so my mom flew North to help me with our house cleaning project! This past week we have been working on our basement every day, and finally, today, we are as done as we can be. There is a half a wall left for The Captain to go through work-related stuff, but my mom & I have gone through everything else. (There won't be any before-pictures, just imagine the space without being able to see the floor or the walls. Walking to the end of the room required some major acrobatics also.)

Our last move was when our big kids were toddlers and I finally went through those boxes too. (Sad, I know.) We've also remodeled the house in various stages, so a lot of stuff ended 'temporarily' in the basement to clear an area for remodeling. We discovered wonderful little treasures and mementos, and were happy to pass pretty much everything else to a friend who will find new homes for stuff that has sat in storage for years (clearly very important & needed at our house!).

Now we have a tidy storage area & a basement sitting area (many thanks to Grandma too, who helped with rearranging furniture & hanging pictures!), ready to be shown to prospective buyers! Our next project is adding some color to our garden beds and doing a little touch-up painting in the kids' bathroom.

After that, my little niece can be born, my mom can fly to my sister's house, and Little Miss & I will head to Nantucket Island to be with the rest of the family!


Äitini tuli Usaan auttamaan siskoani hänen poikiensa ja vastasyntyneen kanssa, mutta vauvalla ei ole ollutkaan mitään kiirettä syntyä tähän maailmaan (toisin kuin molemmilla veljillänsä!). Niinpä äiti lensi meille tänne pohjoiseen auttamaan taloprojektimme kanssa, ja koko viime viikon urakoimme kellarissa. Säilytyshuone on nyt organisoitu ja kellarin olohuone järjestetty uuteen uskoon. Melkein joka ilta yksi ystävistäni tuli hakemaan autolastillisia kamaa, joka lähti kiertoon, ja eilen toinen ystävä haki peräkärryllisen roskapusseja kaatopaikalle. Ah, mikä tunne kun tänään saimme kellarin valmiiksi! (Mieheni vielä pitää käydä puoli seinää kamaa läpi, mutta me äidin kanssa saimme muuten kaikki valmiiksi!) Seuraava projekti on kukkien istuttaminen puutarhaan, ja pieni maalausprojekti lasten vessassa. Sitten saisi siskontyttö syntyä, äiti lentää siskon luokse, ja me pikkuneidin kanssa seuraamme isää ja isoja lapsiamme Nantucketin saarelle. Tiistaina todennäköisesti.