A Summit, a 5K Run, and a New Temporary Home – Portland, Oregon

A Summit, a 5K Run, and a New Temporary Home – Portland, Oregon

After our week in Coeur D’Alene, we jetted over to Seattle for about 5 days to check in with the hubby’s work.  We also dropped into the Microsoft Visitor Center again, at the boy’s request, and played around on this cool program called Fresh Paint.

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While in Seattle, the boys officially began their 5th & 3rd grade school year, which is really hard for me to believe.  This year, besides the regular subjects, Jacob will also be focusing on learning Spanish, Keyboarding, and Computer Coding.  We used an online program called Khan Academy over the last few months, and he was thrilled to learn an introduction to Computer Coding.  He just loves the structure of school and has a passion for learning anything and everything.

Kyle, well, he still spouts off math facts while jumping and bouncing around and sings his read aloud lessons in crazy voices.  You think he isn’t really listening, but he can spout off information that he seems to absorb telepathically.  He calculates math problems using methods that are creative and totally beyond me.  This year we are trying a brand new math curriculum called Math-U-See and we absolutely LOVE it so far.  We are also using The Story of the World for History again this year, which is very interesting and is teaching me many things along with my kids, so I’m very excited to start a new school year.

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After a few days in Seattle, we drove down to Portland, and took a slight detour to downtown Tacoma, passing Stadium High School, a beautiful location and the site where a few movies have been filmed.  Tacoma was beautiful, but the traffic between Seattle to Olympia is dreadful, and I could never, ever live there for that reason.

We arrived in our next rental house in Portland, a little two bedroom place, and I immediately headed to the bookshelves filled with books and movies.  I made my family suffer through their very first viewing of The Sound of Music, which gave me great joy, which I’m not sure they shared.  We quickly learned that the next door neighbors have two hens roaming around their yard (in the middle of the city), and we’ve grown fond of seeing them.  Portland is something else – beautiful, lush, and slightly strange.

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I learned that in Portland, garbage is only collected once or twice a month.  However, recycling and compost bins are collected weekly.  I had to look up composting in more detail, and realized how wasteful I am!  I didn’t realize how many things can be composted.  It is now my mission to be more conscious of how I dispose of garbage.  I turned it into a school lesson too, of course.

We got settled before getting ready to attend The World Domination Summit for the second year in a row.  The name is a little deceiving, but their motto is “Living a Remarkable Life in a Conventional World,” with the tagline of Community, Adventure, and Service.  After experiencing this inspirational event last year, we could not pass up the chance to attend again.  Last year we met some of our “social media” celebrities and authors, such as Chris Guillabeau, Jon Acuff, Jeff Goins, and Jonathan Fields.  This year, Chelsea Dinsmore, of Live Your Legend spoke, as well as a bunch of other awesome folks.  If you are looking for inspiration, you should look up some of these people.

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As part of the Summit, I also accomplished my goal of running my first 5K.  There is nothing like running your first 5K with a group of seasoned runners.  I realized very quickly that I was pushing myself too hard, trying to keep pace with the experienced group, exactly what I was afraid would happen!  Although the run was along the beautiful Portland riverfront, I barely noticed it, because I was strictly concentrating on making it alive to the finish line!  Thanks to my awesome friend, Mike, who stayed back to run the entire last 1.5 miles with me, I did it.  These are the kind of people that you meet at WDS – awesome, encouraging, and selfless.

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To top it off, the finish line was not at the true end of the 5K, which is 3.01 miles, and I know, because my iPhone was in my hand to show me every excruciating mile, but this experienced group thought it was no big deal to move the finish line a little further up, something more like 3.5 miles.  I finished my 3.01 run three entire minutes faster than in all my training, so you will understand why I almost died.  Afterwards one of the runners tweeted something like “Really enjoyed that warm up run this morning, anyone up for another run later?”  I found that amusing.  Oh well, it didn’t matter.  What matters is that I did it!  The reward was having my husband and kids waiting for me and cheering me on at the finish line. What a rush!