working on something new.
hopefully i’ll be back soon.
working on something new.
hopefully i’ll be back soon.
big red’s inaugural trip.
on probably one of the prettiest days i can remember so far this year, we loaded up the car and drove a few miles south to the draper area of pulaski. the new river trail follows an old railroad line, and just two miles south of the draper connection, the trail parallels the new river.
this stretch was mostly shaded, yet broke free of the trees in several places, some of them yielding some pretty killer views of the river.
there were also lots of bridges, this one being one of the most beautiful and elaborate.
as you can tell, jonah had some “help” fitting into the trailer: he was sitting on a folded towel, given head support by his snuzzler, barricaded in by more towels and blankets on either side of him, and finally strapped in with the trailers built in straps. whew.
we hadn’t anticipated that the trail would be a dirt path (a section we’ve ridden before at the other end of the trail was paved), so he got jostled around a lot more than i would’ve liked.
we also didn’t anticipate just how out of shape ross was (haha! love you!) – pulling the weight of the bike trailer + jonah + our lunch across a grassy path wore ross out a little sooner than we thought. but no worries – we stopped at a shady pavilion, ate some lunch, lounged around, and then headed back.
so, the first family bike trip went well, and we couldn’t have asked for a better day.
ross and i aren’t camp-every-weekend kinda people, but we definitely end up hitting the trail several times a year. last year we only went once (due to pregnancy) and this year we’ve been ZERO times (due to baby). sadness.
we’re starting to realize that camping as we know it may have to change for the next few years: backpacking in to a campsite and hiking double digit mileage just isn’t going to be feasible with a baby. or even a toddler. either are our multiple canoe trips we’ve gotten used to doing over the last few years. in fact, the closest we’ve gotten to nature this summer was a hike up to the cascades, a walk around pandapas pond, and a few stroller rides down the huckleberry trail. unacceptable.
but thankfully, our area has so many outdoor options that we just needed to brainstorm some new family friendly options to get out and enjoy the new cooler weather we’ve been having lately.
so how about a bike trip? but we hit a roadblock there too – where do we put the little guy? as advanced as he is with fine motor skills, he hasn’t quite ditched his training wheels. i kid – he hasn’t even mastered sitting up! so i started to hunt for bike trailers – little enclosed “pods” that have bike wheels and hitch to the back of a bike to be pulled along. a quick amazon search revealed that these can easily go for over $200 – not in the budget. a quick craigslist search revealed that, just as with most things i’m hunting down on craigslist, our area didn’t have anything, but i found several on the richmond craigslist. not knowing when we’d be out to my parents’ next, and not wanting the hassle of hauling it 3.5 hours back home, we kept looking in our area. and then ross had the bright idea to call Once Upon a Child – bingo. they had just gotten one in that morning and had priced it at $80 – much better. so i ran out there over my lunch break to snag it up and we were in business. she’s not the sleekest sister at the ball, but she was brand new and in good condition. meet big red:
the front wheel comes off and a bar pulls out from the bottom to hitch to our bikes. and with the weather looking great for this weekend, we’ll head out to the new river trail for a twenty-something mile family jaunt.
yes, this is the mini-van version of biking, but it’s something outdoorsy we can do as a family for many years, so we’re stoked. and since jonah loves to be outside, i think he’s going to get a huge kick out of this. i’ll be sure to snap some pics of our adventure.
so now that jonah is over 4 months into life, i thought i’d do a quick follow up nursery post to highlight a few little changes that have taken place over time.
and this little corner holds most of them
change #1. we received these leather bookend animals (they’re heavy!) as a baby gift from family friends and we loove them.
and here’s the hippos right hand
man – giraffe.
change #2. when i saw this poster, i just knew it had to go in jonah’s room. the backstory on this is that it was used as a promo flyer for a church doing a series on the book of jonah. so i blew it up, had it printed, and framed it.
a mucho talented friend from college knitted this for jonah and i’m absolutely busting waiting for it to get cold enough for him to wear it.
we also swapped out the picture over the crib (its new home is opposite the jonah poster) with this poster ross has had for a million years.
it looked fun and boyish and i actually thought the big tall glass of milk and the title “In the Night Kitchen” was a fun way to think of what I am to jonah at 4am when he gets up to eat
and finally, the jonah wordle. i put this together before jonah was born, but since we didn’t know if baby wilsie would be a he or a she, i couldn’t print it until he made his appearance. more or less, i just took the text from the book of Jonah, chose our nursery colors, and generated this print.
oh yeah, did you notice the little guy in the picture the first time?
hi little baby. in the mornings he loves hanging out on his hokie fleece (thanks aunt kristen!) or in his crib. just chillin out, talking to himself, and throwing out smiles like candy.
so that’s about it for the nursery as of now. surprisingly we did a pretty good job at anticipating what we would need and where we would need it to be stored. the desk turned changing table has worked out even better than i could have hoped, the chair and ottoman have gotten lots of use, and the storage drawer under the crib has been the perfect place for blankets and sheets. and although he could really care less about style and design, i think jonah loves his space as well.
a few weeks ago, i made a realization into the difference between ross and i – perhaps this is true for more than just us?
the realization is this: at almost every moment of the day, i’ve got a to-do list scrolling through my brain. made up of a combination of work stuff, house chores, house projects, life goals, errands, and now with jonah here, a list of things i want to do/remember/capture/memorialize. sometimes it stresses me out – but most of the time it just makes me feel productive and useful. i mean, literally, i’m simultaneously thinking about grocery lists, my savings account balance, designing my dream house, and the clients whose incomes i need to verify.
ross, on the other hand, most certainly does not have this list running around in his head and is quite often overwhelmed by mine.
maybe i’m genetically programmed to follow proverbs 31.27: “she watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness” ?
things happening in life lately
1. best friends in town for a long 4th of july weekend
2. playing with this little guy
even if it’s just to watch him sleep
3. attempting to keep the garden alive
4. family in town to visit
5. and beginning last week, i’m back to work. only 3 days a week right now, which is a blessing, but it didn’t make dropping jonah off with the babysitter any easier. i was pretty much a mess the whole day, but i really do love my job, so hopefully i can find a good balance between work and jonah and everything else going on in life. it’s been pretty busy around here but the long days of summer help me feel like i can fit in everything i need to.
got a few things done over memorial day weekend last week. i daily go through the mental struggle of loving this laid back domestic life i’ve had over the past two months (just learning how to be a mother and doing stuff around the house and garden) and the desire to rev things up
a bit a lot. for example, i’ve had the urge recently to literally bag up my entire closet, donate it to goodwill and then hit up every store in sight for a crazier, edgier wardrobe. on top of that i want to walk into the nearest salon and say “have your way with me!” - still considering both of those options. but in the meantime i’m also very content with this slower paced mom-life (if only i could continue doing this and continue picking up my paycheck every 2 weeks. siiiigh.)
baked some chocolate chip scones that didn’t really turn out as expected but were edible enough
grabbed a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store for dinner one night last week and after finishing off the bird, dropped the whole thing in a stock pot with some veggies and herbs and cooked it down into chicken stock
the beginnings of chicken salad
it was a bright sunny day, so i laid out all the cloth dipes for a nice bleach in the sun
the front porch right now
what i’ve planted:
what’s left to be planted:
- green beans
what i’ve been attempting to cook from lately:
p.s. no, we’re not vegetarians. but meat is expensive!
our area got a whole lot of rain at the beginning of april. which finally allowed our horrible looking yard to turn a rich shade of green. and to grow at an alarming rate. so the rain, plus a few other little distractions, made it hard for ross to get out and mow it for several weeks.
so then it looked like this:
but last weekend he finally got out to mow (and even got to “cheat” by borrowing our neighbor’s riding lawn mower – ours is a push mower, aka “would’ve taken 6 hours to mow”)
left: unmowed grass, right: mowed grass
and voila, the after. much better.
and now for a casual stroll around our yard. i love when our yard finally starts to come back to life.
grape hyacinths. we have them everywhere.
our one lone yellow tulip in the back mulch bed…
and the one lone daffodil right beside it. must plant more bulbs back there this fall so these two don’t seem so random. which right now, they are.
seedum, transplanted from the mother-in-law’s house a few years ago and growing really well.
more seedum. this stuff is so pretty for not having any flowers.
gratuitous puppy pic!
and in the front yard:
on either side of our front porch we have tulips, more grape hyacinths, and creeping phlox – since they’re all in bloom at the same time it really jazzes up the front of the house without me having to do any work. love me some perennials.
and tah-dahhhh! garden 2k11 has begun!
ross had a work thing up in roanoke earlier this week and was kind enough to buy me some pepper seedlings at the roanoke farmer’s market. these seedlings (red, yellow, and orange bell peppers) look soo much better than what i can usually get my pepper seedlings to look like and i’m A-OK with not growing them from seed this year.
all we did was transplant them from their plastic 4-pack into larger pots, where they’ll await their final transplant into the garden sometime in mid may. can’t wait.
and finally, i started my tomato seeds – the only seeds i’ll be growing under lights this year. everything else will get direct-seeded into the garden in may along with the peppers.
this year’s tomatoes: amish paste (like a roma), black cherry (a purpleish cherry), carbon (purple beefsteak), german red strawberry (red beefsteak), and moneymaker (small, very round red tomato).
gratuitous baby pic! our little future farmer (i told him we’d call him a farmer and not a gardener so he could sound more masculine – think that will convince him to help mom in the garden?)