Thursday, January 31, 2008

Adult Ski

Skiing is so dang fun, no one mentions the views. But the views are magnificent. There are so many amazing perspectives of God's creation we would never witness without skis. So if you're thinking of taking up skiing, that's one more good reason why you should!

All you Southeastern skiers are probably wondering where all the other people are! No lift lines and no other skiers in sight (well, except for that one guy over Andy's shoulder and the person who took the our picture together) - that's weekday skiing in the Rockies!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Sitting, Waiting, Wishing...

Here I sit alone in our house on a Tuesday evening. It started mundanely enough, with steaks on the grill and hot dogs for Will. But as I started to clean up from dinner, I heard a cry of pain from the breakfast area.

Will had somehow fallen - HARD - on one of his Tonka trucks. I could tell he had hurt his face, so I immediately figured he'd sustained some sort of mouth injury. Then I saw blood low on his chin.

He'd somehow cut his chin on the Tonka truck. Once Andy and I had him calmed down and cleaned up enough to look at it, we both came to the same conclusion - we needed a doctor to look at it. It was a little deep for either of us to stick a Band-Aid on and call it good.

Once I had recovered from my physical illness at the sight of the cut (I am usually strong-stomached - or at least I thought I was - maybe it was something about it being my own child, but I wasn't doing to well for a few minutes there), we headed to the illustrious Southern Hills Medical Center. By the time we were in the car, Will was calm and content with a large Band-aid on his cut.

By the time we reached the waiting room, Will was back to his usual inquisitive self. He began by asking loudly about another patient, "Why does that man have a pink phone? Pink phones are for ladies! But maybe that is his Mam... maybe that is his wife's phone. Men are supposed to have blue phones. My daddy has a dark blue phone!"

He followed up this announcement with, "Why is that BABY here?" about a crying child.

But perhaps his best line was reserved for a lady using the courtesy phone. "Is that lady OLD? Because she sounds like she is old!" (Although I agreed wholeheartedly with this observation, at this point we tried to explain that while he was free to talk, we needed to refrain from discussing the other people who were waiting.)

After spending a few minutes in the waiting room, we came to the conclusion that this was not the place for the Soph. Something about my vivacious and friendly little one, sick and whiny babies and sneezing homeless guys all sharing the same space just didn't seem like a winner of an idea. So after a little family cheek-kissing, Soph and I came home.

She's in bed, and here I sit waiting for an update and to be called to pick up my men. I don't know yet whether Will will require stitches or (hopefully) just skin adhesive.

MIDNIGHT UPDATE: The men safely arrived home around 10:15 tonight. Will was happy and full of energy and sported skin adhesive on his chin (no stitches!). The doctor said that a couple of years ago, they would've used stitches but apparently the skin adhesive technology continues to progress. S/he also said that the scar would be much smaller than without the adhesive. The cut itself already looks a lot better just from being sealed.

Monday, January 28, 2008

American Why

Will really liked KD, the songstress who sang to us during our sleighride dinner.

One of the songs she played was "American Pie". Will listened closely and had two questions:

1) "What's Whispy?" (This is what the good ole boys were drinking in the song.)

2) "Why are they saying this will be the day that I die?"

A few days after we got home, Will asked me, "Do you know that song 'American Why'?"

I said, "Of course, honey. That's your theme song!"

He's still singing it. I think we're going to have to download it off iTunes for him.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Seriously, It Was Very Cold

OK, just so you'll know my words have credence, I checked the records at Steamboat for Thursday, January 17th, the day of our sleigh ride. The high was 5, low -11. So when I say it was very cold, I ain't just whistlin' Dixie.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Oh Yes It's Lovely Weather...

Thursday evening at Steamboat our whole family went on a dinner sleigh ride. Mom had wanted to go on a sleigh ride last year at Winter Park, but no one was offering them so late in the season. This time, we were glad she got her wish.

Since sleighs aren't at every streetcorner even in Steamboat, we began the evening with a trip to Safeway, where a retired schoolbus driven by a rancher named Rick met us to spirit us back in time to the days of horse-drawn buggies. From the schoolbus we boarded the sleigh along with a couple of friendly Aussie families.

The sleigh was pulled by two draft horses with snowy butts and a driver named Rose whose voice was aptly reminiscent of Kate Winslet's. (I have a picture of the horses' snowy butts but I'm sparing you that one.)

We dashed (OK, more lumbered) through the snow in an open sleigh, but NO JINGLES. (Andy's one criticism of the experience was that they needed to add some bells, darn it!) Instead, we heard the continuous creak of the sleigh on the snow as we traveled on a narrow path between fields that were several feet deep in snow. (We could tell this by the fence posts, some of which were almost completely covered. It's strange how you lose your perspective in deep snow, though.)

I should mention, too, that it was very cold. We had blankets, but it was still very, very cold.

After arriving at the "chuck wagon", a small barn heated (yay!) with gas stoves, we sat around and drank hot cider while we were entertained by a guitar-picker named KD (NOT Lang). Rancher Rick and sleigh driver Rose cooked our steaks themselves (a nice touch, I thought).

The horses obviously knew the routine since the sleighride back to the schoolbus was MUCH faster than the one out to the barn. I'm pretty sure this had something to do with their stables and food being nearby.

The evening was very enjoyable and a nice combination of down-home hospitality and creature comforts.

(By the way, the friendly Aussies explained to us during a tourism pitch that Australia is the size of the continental US with a population the size of New York. Definite food for thought, especially when I'm at the mall on a Saturday, at Best Buy on Black Friday or anytime my personal space feels violated.)

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Walkin' Round In Womens' Underwear

Steamboat Springs is a real Winter Wonderland. (Will says the "other words" to that song are "Walkin' Round In Womens' Underwear". I think his friend Keaton is to blame for this.) Anyway, here are a few pictures that show the landscape...

Mom, Sophie and I at the sledding hill behind the condo

Sophie woe-be-gone expression was indicative of her appreciation (or lack thereof) of the cold weather and snow throughout the week.

Will, on the other hand, was happy as a lark after finding an abandoned dustpan he could use to scoop up snow.

Andy and Sophie in town

Andy and I at Fish Creek Falls. We didn't actually go see the Falls because it was a one-mile snowshoe walk to them and our lack of snowshoes was a serious obstacle. However, we did enjoy the drive up there and the views from the snow-covered parking lot.

Many more vacation pictures to come...

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Don't Forget About Me!

I PROMISE I will post an update soon! I don't want to lose my few precious readers. My big secret is that all along when I was posting every two or three days, it was because I would sit down once a week or so and get several posts ready at once. Then I posted them throughout the week, hassle-free. Now I am at a standstill because I don't have any relevant drafts stowed away and I absolutely have not been able to find time to write any. I have a backlog of topics ready if I can just find time to write! This is a priority for me this week, so please don't stop checking back on me!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Documented Torture

Back on 11/2/07, we spent a morning at Portrait Innovations, trying valiantly for a couple of good sibling pictures (anyone out there with two or more kids know what a Mission Impossible this is). We had fun and the kids did well, especially Will, who was finally old enough to cooperate and not be overwhelmed by all the attention. Without further ado, I am posting the best... and funniest of the outtakes. (Anyone have any fun captions to add?)

"Now, Will... this time try to look sexy..."

I like this next one... "OK, just end the photo shoot now and the girl won't get hurt..."
"Please no... anything but that... NO!... NOT THE CAMERA!!!"
"You want me to touch him THERE? That's silly!"/"You want her to WHAT?!?"

Thanks a lot, Vic!

First of all, I hope you all had a merry Christmas and that your new year is off to a fantastic start. I've enjoyed getting caught up on all of my friends' blogs and I appreciate all of your posts. Thanks to my brother Vic for the kick in the pants needed to make me write a new post.

Thanks to my sister-in-law Katie from whom I blatantly stole the above Annual Christmas Picture. (She's busy trying to deliver a baby, so I was confident she wouldn't have time to prosecute.) We had a wonderful time in Michigan. One of the overlooked benefits to having kids, I think, is that we don't overschedule ourselves as much these days, so we have flexibility to do awesome and cool things like go to a Lions game at the drop of a hat (thanks again, Dan!!!). We also end up spending more relaxed time with family. (Or maybe I'm just relaxing because for once someone else is sharing the responsibility of looking after my kids!)

I've been thinking of my little blog world a lot lately, but I haven't found much time to compose my latest open letter to the world at large. Several things have interferred (i.e, Top 5 Excuses For Not Blogging For Nearly Three Weeks):

1. The holidays - and the effect they had on my house - were not properly factored into my plans. And by "effect" I mean influx of massive chaos and extreme overload of toys. (Not that we are not appreciative of the gifts, but it has been a bit overwhelming.) And this even though we didn't have any Christmas celebration at my house at all!

2. I've been very industriously and lucratively selling my time and efforts on eBay. (Selling time and effort as opposed to ski coupons, because it turns out that selling coupons is illegal. Ah, details!) In so doing, I'm attempting to finance my Steamboat ski pass for our vacation next week. Ideally, I'd finance both mine and Andy's but DANG, Steamboat is expensive! More details may follow on this subject.

3. I've been working a lot at my "real" job to try to get ready for vacation and deal with certain challenges there. I won't bore anyone with the details in this post but you never know, I may need to pontificate on the subject later.

4. You've seen our new, ahem, "investment property". It has required a lot of Andy's time and hence, a lot more of my time has been devoted to childcare. We've also spent considerable time together trying to finalize a workable floor plan for the project.

5. We had a great visit just after Christmas with my OTHER big brother (not the one that issued the kick-in-the-pants directive, although I'm sure this one would've been glad to do the same) and his wonderful family. We shopped til we dropped, Spaghetti-Factoried, and shopped some more. (Can you tell his family is dominated by females?) It was really nice to spend some time with like-minded girls, as I'd almost forgotten the fine art and joy of a good, meandering shopping trip, since I am usually flying solo with two pint-sized stowaways. It was also terrific to spend some time with my brother, who hadn't been to visit us since 1999 or 2000!

Now we are looking forward with much anticipation to our trip to Steamboat this week. Unfortunately (or fortunately, if you have better things to do or find my posts boring), this will mean another delay between postings. But bear with me (especially you, Vic!) as I do hope to post more regularly. I have a backlog of topics on my mind, the challenge is finding time to put together a halfway decent and cohesive post. (I know I failed miserably with this one, but I had a lot of gaps to bridge!)

Peace, love and fresh powder,