Monday, July 30, 2012

Celebrating five years on Bainbridge Island

Summer of 2007, the annual hoedown at Seabold Farm, with our cottage in the background

On July 3rd, Jason and I celebrated five years of living on Bainbridge Island.  When we arrived, fresh off a road trip from Boston, we were childless and ready for adventure.  We moved to a farm and lived in a tiny caretakers' cottage.  I loved commuting by ferry to my job in the city. 

On our first full day on the island, we headed down to the annual Bainbridge Street Dance.  I remember assuming that we would make new friends that very night.  It is a small community, after all.  I laugh now because a town of 20,000 people is actually quite big - - and we were lost in crowd of unfamiliar faces.  I can remember sitting on the curb, eating fried food off a stick, missing Red Sox nation.

Our years on the farm were fulfilling.  We gave up a lot to pay off our debts and save for a down payment.  We learned a lot about birthing ewes, making hard cider, and sowing seeds in a greenhouse.  And they were hard years too.  Jason had his island life and I had my commuting life.  I was often jealous of the connections and relationships he was building.  I complained to him a lot.  Even got in the way of his happiness at times. 

And as life inevitably does, everything just kept evolving and shifting.  Truman joined us on the journey, we planted ourselves more firmly on the island by buying a house.  I traded the ferry commute for a close-to-home job.

From the outside, it all seems so small and so normal.  So a couple of kids got married, moved around, settled down, had a kid, bought a house.  What is the story?  Why does this matter?

And from the inside it feels totally profound.  We trusted that there was a plan for us.  That if we listened, we would hear a calling.  That if we were patient, the right opportunities would arise.  And when I close my eyes and picture the last five years, every shot is of Jason - smiling at me from across a garden, across a barn, across a porch, across a nursery.

Thank you to my hubby for making life so sweet. I love you.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Okanogan details

Making chocolate strawberries for a special treat

Our daily routine, heading down to the water to swim

Readying the canoe

Why is Jason using a kayak paddle? Oh, because his wife wants to enjoy herself in the front seat!

Loving life here!

Doing my own thing.

Discovering a frog

The view from our campsite
Climbing as usual

The one and only family shot

Bedtime stories
Exploring Alta Lake by boat - which is a place my family camped when I was a kid

Not exactly the cliff I remembered, but the water was so warm and delightful

"Don't dive Jason. Don't do it Jason. Arg. You #$%*@"
After we left Chelan, we headed to Bridgeport State Park, which is in the middle of nowhere in the Okanogan Valley. It was the perfect spot to launch our canoe. We were excited to have found this gem of a camp site and we saw yellow-bellied marmots, frogs, deer, tons of birds, and huge butterflies.

The best part of the trip was being together for seven days with no other responsibilities. No phones. No work calls. No email. Instead of staying up late to get things dones, we stayed up late to listen for owls and sit by the campfire.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Chelan details

Hangin' with his cousin Brooklyn at camp

Swimming in Lake Chelan

Pasty white as always. :)

Brooklyn looking beautiful

Movie night at Shane and Erin's trailer

First waterslide ever

Chillin with Uncle Pat

Loving swimming for the first time in his life (typically he is nervous in the water)

Let's see those balls!

Bacon vodka may be in effect here

Jason and I have long been biased about Lake Chelan (a popular camping destination in the middle of Washington State). Too developed. Too many people. Not enough wilderness.

But this year we joined my brother for a few nights. He does a Chelan trip every summer with his family and several of his close friends.

What we learned is that vacations are no longer about me and Jason. They are about Truman. And while Truman can appreciate a remote mountaintop ridge in the middle of nowhere, he would rather be swimming in a crowded lake with his cousin. He would rather be getting ice cream at the waterslide park and burger baskets at the drive through with a bunch of older kids.

Jason and I had a blast because my brother, his wife Christa, Brooklyn and their closest friends are some of the nicest, most hilarious people we have ever met. We felt so lucky to be included and we plan to be back next year.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Chelan and Okanogan Valley

We are back from our weeklong canoeing/camping/fishing/swimming/sunning/yellow-bellied marmots/road-trippin vacation.

We miss
1. Hot weather and warm lakes
2. Lightening storms that shook the tent
3. Camp fires and fishing holes

We came home to:
1. A crazy amout of laundry
2. A little man-child who is growing into such a kind and wild boy
3. Blah Puget Sound weather

Lots more pictures soon!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Rotary Rummage Sale

The largest rummage sale this side of the Mississippi is right here on our home island.  At 7:30 am last Saturday, as I am standing outside the gates of the middle school with thousands of other people, I think to myself, what the hell am I doing? This is a rummage sale, not a Petty show.

Am I really going to run and elbow my way through the crowd to score some used crap that will end up back in the sale next year?

Yes. We do just that, every year.

We spent $174 this year. Not pictured is the propane/charcoal grill, a chainsaw, a large metal truck for the sandbox, and a few large planters.
  • Yes - that is the original Fisher Price doctor's kit. Mint condition.
  • The Playmobil castle only cost $15, but it took up so much room in my bag I was sloooowed way down.
Next year I am going playmobil all the way.

Learning to climb

Truman is trying lots of new things with his body - climbing, jumping, and running. It is fun to watch him gain confidence and do things that make me gasp from across the playground.

I know when he sees a bigger kid doing something adventurous, he will be right behind them.

If he is not talking about Percy Pigs (some candies a friend brought us back from Ireland), he is asking to go to the playground to climb.

Sleep is getting me down

Every single night, Truman comes screaming down the hall into our bed. He wakes up and can't believe our nerve for leaving him alone in his bed. Then he thrashes for half the night. Flayling his body and doing jumping jacks in the bed.

At 6 am when I try to tip-toe out of the mass of blanket, pillows, sippy cups, and one doll named "baby", Truman always wakes up. He screams with annoyance that I tried to leave the bed to enjoy my sacred coffee hour.

Sigh. I am trying to be patient.

We try not to fall asleep in his bed, but I snapped this one a few nights ago when Jason was too tired to resist some cuddle time.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Playing pretend

I have been waiting patiently for Truman to reach the age when we could "play pretend" together. I spent 99 percent of my childhood playing pretend -- setting up elaborate games with my simblings and friends where we became chefs, doctors, or a children living in a boxcar. I love dolls - first little people, and then my first dollhouse, and eventually my friend's madam alexander dolls. We were always in the middle of some dramatic storyline when her mom would call us to dinner.

Poor Truman. All he has to do is glance in the direction of his dollhouse and I yell, "Let's set up the  furniture!" And if he lingers near his play kitchen, I come out of nowhere to shout, "You be the chef, I'll be the customer!"

The picture above was taken in one of the rare moments when I stop talking, take a deep breath, and settle myself down. I just watched him. Baby Cameron had his blood pressure checked, got a few whacks to the head with the hammer, was given a shot into his mouth, and Dr. Truman declared, "Baby happy!"

Monday, July 2, 2012

Important stuff

"Here, let me show you how to get to these razor blades"