Tuesday, August 31, 2010

An Average Day in the Woods

Last week we were on vacation.  We were in the Adirondack mountains in NY, a place I love more than anywhere in the world.  It's beautiful.  There are mountains and lakes and trees and all kinds of good nature.

The weather wasn't perfect to say the least while we were up there.  But the weather was decent for a hike.  Ryan and I love to hike and be in the woods.  Every year we end up doing the same hike, which is crazy because the Adirondacks are full of all kinds of different hikes with different views.

This time we decided to go up Pillsbury Mountain instead of our normal hike.  It's 1.6 miles to the top and classified as moderately difficult.  We figured not a problem. 

We grabbed our friend Todd and off we went.  We quickly discovered 3 things.  1 - Moderately difficult meant pretty much straight up.   2 - We were not in shape.  3 - Lots of rain in the previous days meant lots of slippery rocks.

But we pressed on.  We stopped a lot and enjoyed the different mushrooms (to look at not ingest) and even found a geocache.  We figured we would get to the top and see this gorgeous view.  That's what the Adirondacks are about.

After what seems like forever we got to the top and this is what we saw...

An abandoned cabin in a clearing with trees blocking the view.  But there was also this...

A fire tower 9 flights high with rickety platforms and sketchy chicken wire that got shorter the higher you went up to hold you in.  Oh and dark skies that were obviously going to produce rain.

I am not afraid of heights but Ryan is.  So I went first and quickly climbed to the top carrying my camera and my phone in my hand.  I planned on tweeting from the top because I am that nerd.  I made it up there and then looked down.  It was really high.  And the wind was gushing.  And it was cold.  And it was raining.  And it was super scary. Like I almost peed my pants scary.

After getting to the 8th level, Ryan quickly ran down.  He then started yelling at me to get down and something about a gust of wind taking me right off of the tower.  But I had to get pictures.  So here's my best shaky attempt at a view....

I can't imagine how much better this would have looked on a clear day.  But it was raining and I was pretty sure that I couldn't hold my phone, my camera and the 2 foot chicken wire fence at the same time.

I quickly shoved my camera and phone in my bra and inched my way down.  What took me 3 minutes to climb took me 15 minutes to descend.  I did stop at about level 4 to get a self portrait...

Nice hair.  And my eyes are watering like crazy.  And then we were happy to be on the ground....

And by the time we cautiously descended the steep climb back to the car we were exhausted and ready for a hot shower...

Well, everyone but this guy...

Way to go Tucker the Wonder Pug!  What other 11 year old pug could have made it up that mountain and still have a spring in his step at the bottom.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

What I Pictured

Earlier this summer we went to the beach with friends.  While we had a great time, Ainsley did not.  She got suntan lotion in her eyes and didn't like the water or the sand.  She actually fell asleep on a towel within 5 minutes of being there.  I was totally disappointed.  It wasn't what I pictured a 2 year old's experience on the beach to be. 

This past weekend we went back to the beach with Ryan's Dad and his fiance Deb.  This time I was more careful with the sunscreen and it was exactly what I pictured. 

Fun with Grampy
Swimming with Daddy
Fistfuls of Sand
Beach Toys
Potty Break
Mommy's Girl
Family Swim
Enough Said

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Rules are Meant to be Broken

I have a rule.  Don't cry at work.  I put it in place when I started working.  It shows weakness.  I've never really broken the rule before.

Today I'm breaking it.  I can't seem to stop crying at work. 

My nanny Anne who has watched Ainsley with an exception of a 2 month window since I started back to work, informed me that she can no longer watch her.  (And I can't even type that without crying - Dang).  Her reasons are valid and I know that she's as disappointed as I am.  She loves Ainsley like a granddaughter.

When Anne started watching Ainsley I never imagined I would grow so close to her.  She's like another mother to me and she's also one of the best friends I've ever had.  It is just an added bonus that she would watch Ainsley twice a week. 

It's more than just childcare to me. It's a relationship that started with her taking care of my child and has turned into one of my most valued relationships. It's about mentoring. It's about laughter. It's about fun. It's about learning things. It's about venting. It's about sharing. It's about faith.  It's about unconditional love.

And now my heart is broken.  I know that she's still one of my best friends and nothing can change that.  But things change when routine changes. 

And so I'm crying at work.  And somehow I just don't care about weakness anymore.

Monday, August 9, 2010

I Need a Break

I'm in a slump.  I can't think of anything to write these days.  It seems my thoughts are still wrapped up in potty training and I know how much everyone else wants to hear about that.  Let me just say, I'm worn out and my patience is thin.

I looked through my previous posts to see if I could find inspiration.  I kept getting stuck looking at the vacation posts.  The cruise.  The trip the lake last year. 

I see those pictures and it speaks to me.  The quiet.  The peace.  The relaxation.  The time with people I love. 

And I know it's not just a physical vacation my heart needs.  It's the spiritual too.  My soul longs to just be quiet.  To be at peace with my Jesus.  To relax in His presence.  To feel His love around me.  To learn from Him.

We have been thinking through ideas of what we can do on our upcoming vacation to add adventure.  And now I'm thinking about how I can add some quiet too. 

And the best part is that I don't have to wait for a vacation to get it.  Jesus, you and I have a date tonight. 

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." - Matthew 11:28-30

Monday, August 2, 2010

July Has Gone and Left Good Memories

I don't have the discipline to do it every month, but this month I kept track of my good things each day. 
In the midst of some crazy and sad things, it's a nice reminder to see how blessed I am.

So here goes...

1 Accomplished much at work

2 Hung out with Laura at the children's museum and loved the new edible landscapes

3 Made pickles

4 Hung out with friends at Joy's house for a fun 4th celebration

5 Made good strides with the potty training

6 My little girl danced her way into toddlerhood

7 Good time sitting around the table at my nanny's house when I picked Ainsley up.

8 Big Brother starts. Ahh reality smut.

9 Met with a friend to learn more about search engine optimization. Here's hoping Renewed Health Supply takes off

10 Going away party for our wonderful friends. Blessed to know them

11 Last home group with said friends. Bittersweet. So excited for them but sad for the void they will leave

12 New iPhone delivered. At last!

13 First workout in forever.

14 Still loving the new phone. How was I living before?

15 Baseball with Ryan's coworkers

16 Baseball with my coworkers - a tad much baseball for one weekend but the people were so fun.

17 My BFF's birthday

18 Lively homegroup discussion about the gospel

19 The drama of the Tour De France is almost too much to handle

20 Sweet voicemail from my sweet 2 year old.

21 First accident free day

22 Ahhh Thursday night.

23 Lonnie's birthday party with friends

24 Reunion with friends from days gone by

25 Ainsley loved the pool more than anything I've ever seen before

26 Much accomplished at work

27 Made major progress in Operation Change the Guest Bedroom into Ainsley's Big Girl Room

28 Watched Joy make a trifle that was so pretty and didn't have any meat in it

29 Best Eviction speech ever by a Big Brother houseguest. Miss you Captain Kosher

30 Finished Ainsley's furniture with Anne

31 Canned 40 lbs of tomatoes with Laura. Wow that was a lot of work.

And with that, another month has passed...
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