Monthly Archives: May 2012

home alone

For as long as Pete and I have been together (almost 11 years!) and lived together (almost 10 years!) the number of times that I’ve slept alone in our bed could probably be counted on two hands. Of course I’m not counting the times that I’ve gone to sleep alone in our bed, but woken up next to him in the morning wondering what ungodly hour brought him back home (let’s be serious, I’ve done it as much as he has). What I mean is, the occasion has been remarkably rare on which Pete has gone out of town without me, and it goes the other way as well. Our almost 11 years have seen many a trip to visit family, I’d say 99% of which we’ve done together, and not so many a trip otherwise. Blame it on what I like to call the “poor years” otherwise known as your twenties. But even when we have gone on other trips they mostly always involved both of us, with a few infrequent exceptions for getaways with the girls on my part and camping/hiking/kayaking adventures on Pete’s.

Which brings me to tonight, one such infrequent occasion. Technically I’m not home alone. After all, my darling baby girl (who is SO not a baby anymore) is here with me as are my two out of control weims, so perhaps the post title is a bit off, but what I mean by it is that I’m the only grown-up here and I most certainly will not be waking up to Pete tomorrow. This morning, Pete and his buddy headed southwest toward Asheville, NC for a two night hiking/camping trip in the Appalachian Mountains. With our impending addition to the family, Pete, who truly loves the great outdoors, wanted to log one more adventure with his recently acquired and impressively lighter gear (he might have a slight obsession). He originally planned to go a couple weeks from now, but after some consideration we agreed that was getting a mite bit close to baby day and missing the birth of your child because you were taking a walk in the woods is pretty high up on the unacceptable bar. All of which is to say, he’s not here and won’t be until Wednesday evening. Boo hiss, major sad face, blech.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m very excited that he’s getting to do this. It makes him super happy and that makes me happy. But I don’t like sleeping alone and I don’t like him not being here. I’m not the kind of person that needs a lot of me-time or personal space. That’s not to say that I’d want to spend 24 hours of every day with Pete. Everyone needs to have their own time and interests and activities, and absence most certainly does up the fondness ante of the ‘ol heart. But I know that some folks simply function better when they have more time to themselves and might even look forward to their partner being away for a couple nights. That’s just not me. Especially now that we have a kid (soon to be kids, omg, 6 weeks). Bedtime routine is precious family time that me and Pete both look forward to and absolutely hate to miss. Of course we do and will miss it every now and then because date nights and social gatherings and getaways are healthy and important, and we love doing all of those things, but it definitely pains the heart a bit every time we’re not here to put Norah to bed. And even if once she’s asleep the rest of our night consists of me reading and Pete browsing REI’s website, both in our own little worlds not speaking more than a word or two, simply having him next to me is cozy and comforting, and it makes me feel good.

All of that said, to look on the bright side, I did get to spend the whole day with my mom and Norah. We cleaned my house (yes, that’s a bright side for me), went for a walk, played and went out for Mexican food. Norah and I talked to Pete earlier just before he got on the trail and if he gets a signal anywhere along the way tomorrow he’ll try to call us again. If not, we’ll see him Wednesday evening, which is only two days away, and have lots of amazing mommy-daughter time between now and then. I’m sure Pete’s having a kickass time (hopefully a safe, kickass time) and I know he misses us as much as we do him. So with that, I’ll bid you goodnight and go to sleep. All by myself. Waaaaaaaaaaa.

Elderland out. XO.

PS I totally still sleep on my side of the bed when he’s not here, which I for some reason felt compelled to share because I feel like I should be sprawling out or sleeping in the middle and that perhaps I’m weird for not doing so. So there’s that.


babymoon II

Last weekend, Pete and I drove up to Charlottesville, VA for our babymoon! What’s a babymoon? Well, according to Wikipedia (oh omniscient internet how I love thee): “The original meaning was a period of time that parents spend bonding with a recently-born baby. More recently the term has come to be used to describe a vacation taken by a couple that is expecting a baby in order to allow the couple to enjoy a final trip together before the many sleepless nights that usually accompany a newborn baby. Babymoons usually take place at a resort that offers appropriate services like prenatal massage.”

Okay, first of all, it’s quite clear why they changed the meaning of this term. Obviously derived from the term honeymoon which most definitely describes a time of fluffy bliss and carefree fun, it was entirely inappropriate to associate it with the period of time after the baby comes, regardless of the sequence of events (honeymoon after wedding, babymoon after baby, yeah no, doesn’t matter). I can confidently say that no new (sane) parent would describe the weeks immediately following the birth of their child as fluffy bliss, and if they do, they’re liars or masochists. So indeed, it makes sense that the travel industry (likely in cahoots with The Bump or Baby Center) decided that the social anthropologist/childbirth educator/author that originally coined the term was wrong. It also makes sense that said social anthropologist/childbirth educator/author is a strong advocate of home birth because that and deeming the newborn stage carefree fun would go hand in hand (I’m not judging. Have your baby wherever you want. I will have mine in a hospital. Hopefully.)

Alright! Now that I’ve surely offended someone, let’s move on to our babymoon, yay! You may recall that our first babymoon – prior to Norah’s birth – was a trip to Asheville, NC (you should really read that post again because I did after I wrote the above and it’s kind of funny how the two start). We apparently have a thing for -villes. Charlottesville was actually the suggestion of my Dad when he was visiting us over New Years. After he suggested it, we did a little research and spoke with some friends that had lived and/or been there, and were totally sold. Cute, charming, historic town that we could drive to in less than four hours and do cozy things like stay at a B&B, eat great food and explore – perfect! Note that bit above in the Wikipedia blurb about a resort that has services like prenatal massage. Enh (that’s the buzzer sound for wrong). We’re not really resort people, probably, mostly because we can’t afford to be, but also because we just like the idea of démodé decor in an old house accompanied by friendly hometown hosts and a “free” breakfast.

We stayed two nights at the South Street Inn – primo location for walking to pretty much anything we’d want to do in Charlottesville, except maybe Monticello which we elected not to do anyway because it would’ve cost nearly $50 and we decided with only two days in the town we’d rather spend that money on eating and other activities. Eat we did! And shop a tiny bit (presents for the kiddos), and catch a movie (The Five Year Engagement), and explore UVA, and walk A LOT, and visit the Farmers’ Market (right across the street from the Inn!), and much to our surprise there happened to be a music festival in town that weekend so we got to see The Walkmen. The weather was amazing, the town was adorable, the food was delicious and we had a really, really great weekend. Of course we missed the piss out of Norah and were stupidly excited to get back home to see her (thanks to Grandma for taking care of her!). And now I’m officially on travel lock down until Crosby day.

A few snappies:

our room at the inn

32 week belly

the walkmen

is that chris farley doing a chef demo?

transamerica bike trail

mother’s day breakfast

Elderland out. XO.

32 weeks


(Snappies from 31 weeks, on our beach trip)

Dear Crosby –

Holy shnikeys are we getting close! Less than two months away from Crosby in the real world. It can’t come fast enough in Mama’s opinion – she’s pretty much over this being pregnant business. But eight weeks is hardly any time when you consider she’s already made it through 32, so she’ll do her best to be patient and keep busy to help distract her from the daily discomforts of gestation. She’s already up more pounds than her total gain with your big sister, a point that the midwife didn’t hesitate to show concern over at her last appointment. Whattaya gonna do? She does her best to stay active with daily walks and some light strength training, and though there is the occasional dietary splurge on sweet treats, moderation is in place. Many women in Mama’s family laugh in the face of that 25 – 35 lb “normal” range of weight gain, and considering that Norah was just shy of 8 lbs at birth (totally average) and Mama was able to lose all her preggy weight in less than six months, the midwives can take their concern and  do you know what with it (you actually don’t know what, since you’re a baby and all, but you will someday).

Aside from her bigness, all seems to be peachy with the pregnancy. The next check up is two days away, and after that the appointments will be two weeks apart instead of four. As you know, the official due date is July 9th, the day before Norah’s second birthday. Norah was six days early and with as big as Mama is and the notes from her ultrasound that you too measured a bit above average, we’re placing our bets on an early arrival for you as well. Maybe you’ll be an Independence Day baby! Or born in June! Only time will tell, but whatever the day, the most important thing is that all goes smoothly and you are healthy. Just try not to be 10 lbs, okay? Mama’s maybe just a tiny bit freaked out about that prospect.

Over the weekend Mama and Daddy went on their babymoon – a getaway for just the two of us to get in a little quality time and relaxation before we dive head first into the deep end of newborndom. We’ll post more about that separately, but that was it for our pre-baby travel. We’re staying close to home (and the hospital) from here on out and not risking long distance labor. In a few weeks we’ll attend “Meet the Midwives” at UNC to get reacquainted with where all the excitement will go down, and then maybe start thinking about packing that all important bag, and talking out a flexible, informal birth plan.  Step one: go to the hospital. Step two: give birth. That should cover it ;). But really, we have a few things we need to make a final decision on like, dun dun dun, circumcision! Yay!

Keep growing, little man. But not too big. We love you soooooooooo much!



beach snappies

A few more cutie patootie snappies from our trip to Emerald Isle:

Elderland out. XO.

crazy may

This is definitely one of those months. The kind where every weekend is full of activity and adventure and life just spins along like a whirling dervish stopping for nothing and gaining speed. And it’s only the 8th! So much more to come. This is good though. I’m happy about it. At 31 weeks and counting I need to be occupied to help keep my mind off of how pregnant (read: big, hot, tired, uncomfortable) I am. Plus better this month than next, because next I imagine I’m not going to want to do much of anything other than complain. So much fun for Pete!

Technically the fun kicked off the last weekend of April. For the first time in our 7 years of living here in Central North Carolina we took part in the Piedmont Farm Tour. One of our good pals organized a group to spend Sunday afternoon touring four of the 40 or so farms on the map. Being that the tour is only two days and open for four hours each day, I don’t think it would actually be possible to see all of the farms, but also totally not necessary. We selected four in our area and that was perfect. Norah came along for the first and then went to Grams and Grandma’s for a nap so we could continue the tour, finishing up with a farm fresh dinner at our friend’s house. Supporting local farms, learning about their practices, checking out some seriously awesome animals (Norah’s favorite part) and spending time with best pals…fantastic!


Then came the first week of May at work. Our west coast Account Director was in the office (from Palm Springs) so of course there were more meetings than usual, and on top of that we have two folks leaving the company over the next couple months, so I had interviews and hiring decisions to attend to. Lastly, it was the first of three four-day work weeks in a row (I know, poor me) so there was as much to get done in less time than usual. But all of that went swimmingly – we made three new hires all of whom are starting this month and I got all my work done – and then on Friday morning it was off to the beach, huzzah!

Us Elders and my mom headed to Emerald Isle for two days of coastal fun, and Norah’s first trip to the ocean. Emerald Isle is the beach town on the North Carolina coast where Pete and I got married in September of 2006, so clearly it means a lot to us and was the perfect place to introduce Norah to the surf and sand. Pete found us a charming three bedroom condo (cheap!!) in a complex with a couple pools and a boardwalk down to the beach. We were only there for two days, but it was the perfect amount of time to enjoy some primo weather and partake in all sorts of seaside merriment – swimming, sunbathing, playing in the sand, kite flying, Norah floating around in her new inflatable pink “boat,” kayaking, beach walking, a visit to the NC aquarium, a stop by the beach house where we got married, some lunch at the Big Oak Drive In (that catered our wedding, YUM), cooking seafood and somehow among all of that, even a little bit of relaxing. And what’s more, simply seeing the smile on Norah’s face  through all of this made it 10 million times more enjoyable. As if having kids wasn’t already the bees knees, I’ve started to realize just how much better everything is when you experience it with your youngin’.


This weekend we head to Charlottesville, VA for our babymoon and later this month we go to a wedding and a pig pickin’ all in the same weekend! More to come on all of that.

Elderland out. XO.

PS More beach snappies to come soon too, once I get them off the Pentax.