Thursday, July 17, 2014

Photo-dump from the Buckeye State

 Here is why we love Ohio: 1) a backyard AND a swing-set.
 2) a small-town fire department willing to let Phoebe spray the hoses, ride in the truck, and hang out shoulder to shoulder with firefighters.

 3) friends with swimming pools and toys.
 4) stuff with wheels and no downstairs neighbors to hear us wheeling stuff around on the hardwood floors.
 5) creativity welcome here! The kids decorated the four-wheeler, bikes, and tractors for their own Fourth of July backyard parade.
 6) Amish Country. We spent a day at my sister's friends' home...
 ...taking photos,
 going on buggy rides...
 We saw some beautiful places along the ride.
Bruce was not amused by the jittery buggy ride. Oliver clung to me with the same look of fear. Phoebe, however, was over the moon and wanted the horse to go faster.
 7) almost all of my family is there! We visited Grandma, weeded her gardens, and ate many many many cookies.
 8) chickens! We ate fresh eggs and even got chicken hugs.
 9) space! Phoebe and Uncle Chris took to the four-wheeler and sped all over the backyard.

 10) X-Box with Minecraft at Grandma and Grandpa's house. Plus cousins. Yessss.
 11) a bounce house to expend all excess energy.
Bruce and Phoebe pointed out all the "for sale" signs that we saw in Ohio. Now to find a neuro-interventional-radiologist position in another half-dozen years or so...

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Thursday, July 03, 2014


The kids and I headed to Ohio last week. The last day of school was on Monday, so we had planned to leave Tuesday. With the news of Kate's death, I waited a few more days; I didn't want to leave if there was going to be a funeral and frankly just didn't feel like driving for 12 hours. I felt up to it by Friday though, so we made the trek to "Ohiooooooooooo" as Phoebe calls it.
My mind must have been elsewhere because I missed our first turn. We usually take I-80 for most of the drive but because I missed the turn we took I-90 the whole way. It didn't add much time, if any; it just added tolls. We made two stops: the first for gas and stretching at a park, and the second for gas and lunch. After the kids ate lunch, I got them ice cream cones and found a quiet spot I could feed Oliver. Phoebe's ice cream fell off the cone (after repeated warnings about holding it sideways!) and she threw a huge fit, screaming "I want more ice cream!" I literally had to drag her to the rest stop bathroom to clean her up. I was happy to strap her into her booster seat after that...
Hallelujah! I drove the final five hours straight simply because I didn't want to have to deal with that all over again!
Now we are here and loving every minute of it. Bruce is happy to be playing with cousin Sam at every available moment. Phoebe has been playing with cousin Eliza a lot. Yesterday, Grandma arranged for them to have a deluxe tour at the fire station. They got to ride in a fire truck, spray the hoses at a fake house, and hang out with Firefighter Matt and Firefighter Connor. Photos of this to come. Oliver has been learning how to go up and down stairs and has been pushing anything with wheels around the house. He loves swinging in the backyard too.

I am loving just being home. I got to attend my niece's baptism and another niece's baby blessing. I've been running on soft trails every day (wearing my New Balance 890s that Kate convinced me to wear!). I am doing a sort of sleep-training boot camp with Oliver, hoping to kick this eating-in-the-wee-hours habit once and for all.

The other day we ran out of eggs, so I told my mom I'd go pick some up. I asked where the closest place was to get eggs. She told me to go down past so-and-so's farm, past one road, and go to the farm on the left. Then I was to drive around back to some small building, where there would be a fridge full of eggs and a basket to put the money. I love Ohio.

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