2015 was a year of massive upheaval wherein my life changed in a number of profound ways.
We started 2015 with a trip to our favorite LA park, Lake Balboa. We weren’t the only ones with this idea.
It was an uncharacteristically cool January, and we loved it!
Noticing that I had too few pics with Andy in 2014, I sought to remedy this problem asap in 2015.
As Chris and I prepare to embark on our reconnaissance mission to the pacific northwest, Oslo tries to keep us at home with the power of his eyes.
In the airport, super happy. A friend notes that my joy seems to be about the USB cable in the background.
PORTLAND, BABY! The first stop on our recon mission.
Chris at Powell’s. ‘Nuff said.
A gorgeous night in the Pearl District.
Wendy shows us around her lovely neighborhood.
The gorgeous trees in North Portland.
Sara and Steve host us in their gorgeous NE house and introduce us to some excellent food and detailed Portland intel.
Part two of our mission takes us to Seattle!
Sara and Tony give us the “Newcomers Guide to Seattle” cliff notes.
Peter and Devon in a rare moment when they are not with their adorable cats.
Home again after our trip. The cats forgive us… eventually.
Hiking with the awesome Kristen and her partner in crime.
We make a decision about the future. (And Remy immortalizes it with this sticker.)
Finn is so chill, man.
LA does many things right.
We start saying goodbye to our favorite places, including More Than Waffles.
Sunlit park walk with some of our besties.
Damn, I love these folks.
Finn watches the contractors rip apart our house from the safety of a sheltered nook.
Our staged apartment looks… kinda nice, actually!
The bed gets moved to a totally different room and I somehow have to sleep there anyway.
Last trip to Tasty’s Donuts, the best little donut place you can have on your own block.
Chris and I are astounded to realize that we’ve sold to two big SF markets for the first time within months of each other.
A farewell trip to our little park.
I say goodbye to my amazing book club and the amazing women I had the pleasure of getting to know.
Finn is ready for the move. We are not.
Claudia is… Claudia. There’s no one like her, and as much as I hate saying goodbye, I know that we both have big adventures ahead of us.
The move starts to make us goofy.
Saying goodbye to our little town of Tarzana with all its Tarzan-y-ness.
Chris waiting for the movers to arrive. I have no idea if we even slept the night before this.
The tiny apartment looking very lonely indeed.
In the car ready to head north.
So many bugs on the drive. And so many glorious trees.
On the third and final day of the drive, Finn has finally had enough of captivity.
We arrive in Portland and head to the pub for some much-needed victory beverages.
Our new apartment, which we rented sight unseen, turns out to be pretty nice.
We tool around St Johns, where we hope to buy a house. (But don’t.)
St Johns is all kinds of adorable in the spring.
We go back to the same coffee shop (St John’s Roasters) that we visited during our recon visit. We love it even more.
Yep, still gorgeous here.
Somewhere during all of this, I decide to try Mass Effect and become deeply obsessed for several months. Rarely have I known such a love.
I meet new friends in Portland. Most of them are writers but only some of them, like Miriam, come with dinosaurs.
The cats don’t know what to make of the cooler weather.
Our first Portland Thorns game. We don’t dress nearly warm enough and leave halfway through, fighting hypothermia.
We discover a lovely new park that makes us feel like we’re walking backwards through time.
Time for a writing retreat with my buddies in Iowa!
Deb, Greg, and Sarah. We call our gathering a “career rejuvenation spa,” and I am always in great need.
Sarah’s land is stunning.
Back to our Portland park. Mmmm.
I go on a wine-tasting and writing afternoon with some of my new buds. Afterwards, Teri shows me around the area.
Our second Portland Thorns game. This time, it’s too hot!
Finn finds life in Portland very similar to life in LA.
I return to LA for one short weekend and see some amazing people: Tracie, Remy, Andy, and Carol.
Time for some voice over work on HEY WORDY with David. We are always so miserable when we work together.
Porto’s. I can’t go back to LA without visiting Porto’s.
Portland cats snuggle a lot more.
My agency retreat is in Portland this year — look at those smiling writerly faces!
And more writers, almost mostly smiling!
Tricia and I go on a day trip that involves Sasquatch and a very large cinnamon bun.
Also, it involves the Oregon Coast.
I fly back to California again, this time to pick up my new car. Her name is Lockheed and she has been amazing.
Chris and I head to WorldCon in Spokane by way of Multnomah Falls.
WorldCon peeps! Judith, Greg, Chris, and Charlie. They are pretty awesome folks.
Miriam, Kelly, and I go on an adventure to a toy museum. It is equal parts cool and racist.
We bought a house. O.o
All of our worldly possessions in one giant lump.
The cats explore the new house.
Finn is most fond of the pile of packing materials.
We don’t have furniture, but the first thing we do is build our library.
October comes and I participate in “InkTober” for the first time. It’s ridiculous fun.
A quick jaunt to Houston for the Tweens Read book event, which is so fabulous and exactly what I needed to re-ignite my interest in writing after a busy year.
Remy visits Portland! Squee!
We get a rug. It’s a big hit.
Dear wonderful Sally sends me a housewarming gift — this amazing knitted throw. I have to fight to use it.
The library starts taking shape. The cats use it to pose for album covers.
Oslo prefers sitting on high-contrast blankets.
Yes, the Library is working perfectly.
In our quest for hygge, I create “the slipper basket” for guests.
Oslo likes our new pouf.
New roof! New roof! (Actually, it’s not exciting, just expensive.)
Cairo. Possibly more cute now that he’s on Prozac.
Finn gets dressed up for Halloween.
We host our first weekend writing session at Whiskerwood.
Look! Furniture in every room now!
The cats like the new reading chair.
Still gorgeous here? Check.
Anne! Anne is in town!!!!
We make Fat City Cafe our new breakfast hangout. The food is okay but the decor is utterly delicious.
Kelly drags me to a yarn store despite my complaints. What happens next will astound and horrify you!
My first knitted hat. In the next six weeks, I will knit five more, all with different patterns.
Thanksgiving brings a visit from Chris’s parents. We’re sick with awful colds, but it’s wonderful to see them. (And the food from Barbur World Foods is fantastic!)
Our little local village gets all dolled up for Christmas. Most important, I get to pet a horsie.
Have I mentioned that it’s colder here than in SoCal?
Lee Farms all bedecked for winter. I am loving this whole “seasons” thing.
Our festive wreath, hung high enough that it’s safe from the cats.
I make a weird little tree from ribbons and the cats delight in sitting inside it.
Jed visits! Jed visits!!!
Portland is truly the #landofwonders.