Married for 4 years, have been together for 8 and you know, things really evolve. We, as individuals, evolved; our family size grew; our place of living has changed a few times; all in 8 years.

That morning, Liam and Jon surprised me with tulips and pink roses. Jon took me to the Ringside Fish House that I thought was a casual place, hence my very casual outfit that was a bit out of place there. The movie plan was scrapped to instead hang out at the Governer’s Park followed by more drinks and pies at Savoy Tavern. In fact, the pies led us to its source at Random Order that you MUST check out.

It was fun to reminisce about what took place in our lives—what took us to Portland, where we’ve been, who we’ve met, that sort of thing. Despite the issues, which are mostly about clashing personalities and preferences and unmet expectations, we still have fun though not as often as we did before Liam.

And you know, as we sipped wine with the sun setting on dry Portland (we got lucky that night), we couldn’t help but feel grateful that we are still together. I’m still with the man I married. We are aware of who we truly are as individuals and that we are making it work all the time. It’s not always fun and I’m going to be straight that we’ve had some truly sad days while asking ourselves what the hell we’ve been doing. You just have to be honest about what you truly want and what can make you happy. It also takes plenty of growing up to accept that your wants and needs can be put in the back burner for maybe a while. Sometimes a long while. And we wake up the next day or two, refreshed by a fun activity with Liam or from watching a TV show we both like or laughed at a joke we both thought was funny, and then it’s not so bad. Life is good again, it has always been good. It isn’t easy to see it that way all the time though. But, we are aware how fragile things can get and how much self-analysis is involved when things go bad.

What I also realized was that the longer I’m married and the older I get, love is too grand for words. It’s very encompassing, it’s evolving and it’s transcending. You can define it something today, and define it another tomorrow. I also learned so much in the past 8 years. Of course I changed. Life calls you for it. Some parts of my personality got heightened because I now live a different life. It’s true that you will not know someone until you lived with them, but it also applies to knowing yourself.

I’ve been meaning to update but haven’t had the time and motivation, which I know are not mutually inclusive. :)

Valentine’s was a sweet day! I promised myself to surprise Jon a bit more this year and I started with flowers! He received an arrangement of orchids, and got serenaded by a singing telegram group and a box of cupcakes. At the end of day, I saw a beautiful set of white roses sitting on Liam’s table in the living room. The boy also gave us a card. A lady at Whole Foods gave Liam a pink rose that he hasn’t gotten rid of yet.

My sister and her husband are here on holiday for 3 weeks. We all went to Mt. Hood for some snow fun, though I’m suffering from whiplash after I collided with a 6’5” man tubing down a hill. Ugh. Times like this when I worry about my ever delicate bones and think about aging.

Portland had had some nice days but mostly just wet and cold. I’ve come to realize that it affects me when I compare the weather here with East Coast’s. I have stopped doing it for a while now, though not sure why I would knowing it’s really great there right now! I can’t complain really because it was a mild winter.

Four seems so much older than 3.

It’s an age that Jon and I seem to grapple with. Our Liam is a year older, and in another year he will be in Kindergarten. This was the age when I started having memories that stuck. Being mindful of our words and actions has started to bear more weight upon us. Another phase of parenting.

We thought it was time to do a celebration not in the confines of our home or his school. We have kept it simple in his first 3 years, but because he’s now more aware of birthdays and the associated fun (and presents) that come with it, we decided to do something “extravagant”. Not every year, kid. The kids had fun with their parents on the ice. I was so surprised to see Liam skating on his own after half an hour of lessons. Aah, the joys of being young.

But on his birthday, Monday, we had cupcakes and parfait for afternoon snack. His friends sang to him in English and Spanish. Being around him and his friends reminded me how much of a little boy he is, and how much joy it brings to him to celebrate with his school friends. He told us that he really appreciated that his friends sang to him and greeted him on his birthday.

Happy birthday, Darling. We love you.