Thursday, February 25, 2016

One of the things I got for my birthday this year was this small travel bag.  I have been using a bag I got 8 years ago from Dad and Lisa as a diaper bag, and after they gave me this new one I decided it was time to retire the old one.  I have loved that red diaper bag, but this one is smaller and with a little creativity I'm able to fit everything I need to inside.
Over Presidents' Day weekend we drove up to the cabin.  I love going up there, but sometimes would prefer to just stay home over a long weekend and bum around the house, or spend a day at the zoo, etc. with the kids.  Eric and I compromised somewhat by leaving on Saturday instead of Friday so we could spend some time with friends before we left.  Our drive up was one of those laugh or cry situations:
About an hour into our drive Oakley threw up, poor thing, making a bit of a mess in the back seat. After cleaning it up and starting on our way again he threw up a second time, but this time into a bag we had provided.  Not the best smell to be wafting through a car driving on windy roads. Anyway then Birch told us he was poopy, but we were close enough to the cabin to decide we would wait until we got there to change him.  Then poor Oakley (and I hope he forgives me for this, but mind you he was sick) pooped in his pants.
It was okay, we were almost to the cabin.  We could fix everything once we got there!  A moment later the cabin came into view and we saw 4 feet + of snow piled on either side of the road, with no plowing having been done on the cabin road.  The only way to get up was to hike.  Eric took some of our things up, turned on the heat, and then we left.  We had planned on getting dinner in McCall before settling at the cabin anyway (we drive up, turn on the heat, then come back after dinner when its all warmed up), but this meant we would have to find another place to change the boys.
We decided the best place to do that would be at Ponderosa State Park where they have really nice, large bathrooms.  It was still a 30 minute drive however.  We just needed to make it another 30 minutes!
About 15 minutes on our way, a policeman pulled us over for speeding (mind you we were trying to get to a bathroom).  He let us off with a warning, and finally we reached the bathrooms.  Anyway, after Saturday things were much smoother!
We looked at some snow sculptures while we were up in McCall and the kids played in some snow piles (and kept begging us to let them eat some snow.  As you can see it wasn't exactly edible at this point).

Due to being snowed in we didn't end up going to church on Sunday so we went out and played in the snow for quite a while.  It was a beautiful day and warm.

Eric and I had brought our snowshoes but I failed to grab mine as Aspen, Oakley and I headed up towards the woods to look for a good sledding spot.  It must have taken me 20 minutes to go a hundred yards with the snow being so deep.  The snow, however, was not good for sledding and no matter where we went, we couldn't get a good run.

Eating snow is a good second option, right?

We had fun digging out a snow fort, each of us taking turns.  It was eventually big enough for all the kids to fit inside, but then it started to rain.....

So the rest of the time we played inside, though the kids braved the rain throughout the weekend now and then to get more snow time.  We watched a lot of BBC's Walking with Beasts episodes and snacked a bunch.  I'm glad we went up.

Let's see...we got back Monday night, and then Wednesday morning Eric and I headed to Santa Monica for a few days.  He had a legal conference there and had suggested I join him.  At first I thought his idea was amusing since the conference was in the middle of the week, but Pete and Ami had just gotten back from spending 2 weeks in Hawaii and were more than happy to take the kids off our hands for a few days, so it worked out really well.
When Eric and I had just gotten married and I was learning to ski, we were spending Christmas with the Ritter family and were up in the mountains.  The day we were supposed to go skiing it started raining with a vengeance and Pete and Ami teased me that I was secretly praying for rain so we wouldn't be on the slopes.  This was completely untrue, but to be honest I was pleased with a break (learning to ski was a love/hate thing for me), but that is still a running joke whenever it rains.  Many of our vacations have been wet, and this one to California was no exception!  The day Eric and I arrived it rained all evening, so we took our rental car up for a drive through the canyon in Malibu.  It was beautiful!!  Not a bad way to spend an evening.  Sometimes rain is a good thing :)

Our hotel was a bit funky.  It was called the Hotel California.  Just a bit kitschy and not exactly in pristine shape.  But the location was amazing!!  Definitely worth the stay there.  We were just a block from the beach and pier, and along the beach ran a paved path for miles.  Eric had meetings all day on Thursday so it was just me, the beach, and a long run.
I really can't picture anything better:  a paved run along the beach.  It was one of those moments where you can't believe you're where you are, doing what you're doing.  I felt so blessed to have legs, to have time.
It was a great run; so pretty.
After my run I went home, showered, and spent some time along the promenade, checking out some shops.  (I snapped a photo of this triceratops for the boys.) Then Eric and I met up and walked a long the pier to grab some dinner.

Eric only had to work until 1:00 the following day so we had lunch on the pier again before heading to the airport.  It was such a beautiful day; we were so sad to be leaving the perfect weather to sit on a plane.  

Aspen turned 8 on Saturday and has decided to be baptized.  We are so proud of her and having a fun time planning her special day.  We have lots of family coming into town next weekend and are so grateful they are making the trip to celebrate with us.
All Aspen wanted to do on her birthday was go to the gym with me.  Scentsy's policy is that children can use the gym starting at 8 years old.  I was excited too; she spent some time on the treadmill, elliptical, rowing machine, bike, and stair stepper.  We did some mat work with body balls, and she played some basketball too.  She had a great time and is excited to go back.  She was so excited it was a little scary at times; she jumped on one machine without my guidance when I wasn't looking and it could have done some serious damage.  We talked several times about her not touching things unless I was with her.  I love her enthusiasm :)
Later that day we took the kids to the aquarium (yes, Boise has an aquarium...!)  Then we met Pete, Ami and Mary for yogurt and TCBY.

With all the fun things we did that day nap time didn't make the list, and Birch wandered over to the couch that evening and fell asleep.  Aspen said she had a good day, which was nice to hear.
Signing off with a hello from the kids at breakfast this morning.


ellen said...

She's 8?!? That's wild! I hope her baptism day is wonderful.

Bethany Fegles Photography said...

That story was crazy!! Oh my goodness... to survive all of that and then have the cop pull you over! You guys are awesome. Those moments feel unreal, but make the best stories. Sheri Cook came over the other day and I told her about your little travel story and she was dying. :)

That's so fun that you got to join Eric in CA on a little getaway! You two are so cute. I loved all the pics!
Love you!