Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Summer Vacation Road Trip

The second week in July we headed East and spent eight days in the Blue Mountains, Pendleton, Walla Walla, Baker City, and Hermiston. If you've heard of those places, you might be from Eastern Oregon or Washington. Some highlights include lovely runs in the mountains and on the river path in Pendleton, riding bikes in the evenings with family, nightly visits to Dairy Queen, dry heat that was comfortable in the shade, lots of dog and human socialization for Glen, and a day at the water park.

All around, it was a lovely vacation.

Here are a few photos from our little adventure:

We hiked to the top of Multnomah Falls,

spent a few days at the family cabin,

played with our friends and family,

and relaxed on the long car rides.

This trip was awesome, but being away from home for 8 days, then spending the next 6 days attending a 10-hour-a-day class kind of threw my life out of whack. Just now, our house is finally clean again, and I am getting back into the swing of stay-at-home parenting. I will probably just finally get my routine down about when I go back to work in the fall, and change it all again. I have a part-time teaching job and also some potential doula work lined up, so I hope to be just the right amount of busy without feeling too overwhelmed.

We used g-Diaper disposable inserts for the first four days of the trip, which was our first time using anything other than cloth, and I plan to do a post about that soon. Keep checking back as I actually have many informative (I hope) blog posts lined up but am just working on finding or taking photos to go with them. What would you like to hear about first? Disposable diaper inserts? Our composting system? How the garden is growing? New recipes and food ideas? A new (to us) slug solution for the garden? Nursing a toddler? Berry picking? If you have a vote, let me know in comments and that will help me choose what I should work on first.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Bathing Beauty

 Here is Sweet Pea earlier this month (sixteen months old), enjoying a dip in the pool with her new floatie toy that looks like a lily pad.
Don't you just love summer?

Goodbye and Good Luck to Auntie Molly

Sweet Pea, Average, and I are very lucky to have a large and loving family that has provided tremendous support to us adventure as new parents. My sister, Molly, is one member of this amazing family that has been especially involved in our lives during this time. Just yesterday, she left for her training in Madagascar as a Peace Corps volunteer, where she will have possibly very limited access to phones or internet. I don't know what we would have done without her so many times over the last year and a half, and while I am super excited and proud of her for taking on a huge new challenge in her life, I can't believe she's going to be gone for the next two years.

What follows are just a few of the moments I remember from everything Molly has done for us. I don't think anyone could have been more excited to find out she was going to be an auntie, and she was thrilled to be invited to be at our birth. She held the trash can for me when I threw up, brought me water and washcloths, and took great photos of the whole thing. She stayed with us for five days after Sweet Pea was born, and along with my mom kept our house cleaner than it ever normally is, cooked us great food, held Sweet Pea every chance she got, and brought me anything I asked for. As an aunt, she is amazing with Sweet Pea. A month ago I drove three hours to watch our brother graduate from college. Average had an issue at work at the last minute so he wasn't able to make it, so it was just me and baby. The first hour was fine but the last two hours, after it got dark, were hellish. My screaming toddler would not be comforted by anything: music, singing, talking to her, snacks, water, toys, nothing. I stopped several times and she would be happy out of the car, then unhappy as soon as she got back into her seat. The last few minutes I called my sister and she talked on speaker phone to us and Sweet Pea finally quieted down. When we got to town, Molly got in the car with us for the ride to where we were sleeping, to keep Sweet Pea company. The second night we were there she came and slept with us so that I could have help while getting ready for bed and getting up in the morning. Last week, while she was making her final preparations for her trip, she babysat Sweet Pea for us for three days while I attended a class to maintain my teaching license. Really, everything I've ever asked for and more, she has done for us, happily. She deserves a prize for Most Wonderful Aunt.

Yesterday Sweet Pea, me, and my dad said goodbye to her at the airport. We are thrilled for her to have this opportunity and adventure, and I know she will learn so much and have a wonderful time, but we are going to miss her like crazy.

Molly: We are so proud of you for choosing to do this. You are an incredible person and we know you will continue to change people's lives for the better on the other side of the world, as you have done here. We love you and send you all our best wishes!
Hugs and Kisses,
Your Big Sister