Driving around the quaint towns of New Hampshire looking for covered bridges was a wonderful way to spend a couple of days when my parents were here. It was like we were on a treasure hunt trying to find them all. Most of the bridges do not have any signs that tell you exactly how to get to them (which I love) so it's very exciting when you do get to one! Every time we would get to one I kept saying, "oh, this is my favorite one!" but it was too hard to choose a favorite. I just adore the charm they have. Worn wood, majestic views of the rivers, snow covered trees surrounding them...it was wonderful. I also enjoyed exploring this state that I live in! I wish I could have taken pictures of all of the barns, old rustic doors on homes, fresh pine wreaths hanging on old churches, and mossy rock walls we saw. Caroline and Olive were the greatest little travelers. I was able to squish my post pregnancy hips and bum between their carseats (hence why I wasn't jumping out and snapping more pictures) and enjoy my sweet girls company the entire time. We tried to find a cozy little greasy spoon for lunch and we ended up at the Bluebird Cafe somewhere down south. Yes it left a bit to be desired, but the red stools that lined the counter as we walked in were again charming.
New England College Bridge
Proof that sweet little Olive was with us on on our adventure. She only got up to eat with us at lunch.
This week has been non-stop fun and we have loved having Grandma Mary and Grandpa Wayne here! Everyday it's kind of like a circus when we try to get out the door, but once we get in the car and everyone is settled, the days have had a nice calm flow to them. I love hanging out with my parents because we enjoy so many of the same things: good food, lighthouses, covered bridges, and each other! They are so fun to travel with and I have so many wonderful memories with them. We headed to Maine again and saw three lighthouses and had lunch at my favorite restaurant. It was a nice day so we were able to walk about a half mile to two of the lighthouses. It felt so good to be out. My parents were the cutest and were happy to join in follow the leader with Caroline while "A whole new world" played in the background. My dad is holding a magic wand, which had me rolling with laughter. Caroline could get any of her darling grandparents to do anything with her. We adore all of our family in Utah so much!
This is a 10 pound 13 oz. bundle of joy who is 22 inches long. She is becoming used to being in this crazy world more and more each day. Her favorite place is the changing table, which, can you blame her? She has just eaten and is getting a clean diaper on when she is on there. She smiles and smiles and loves to talk.
at about 7 am we hear a sweet little voice loudly saying, "Mommy, daddy, I'm awake!" bright eyed Caroline is sitting on her bed smiling waiting for us to come in her room when we ask how she slept she replies, "Good" when we ask what she had dreams about she tilts her head to the side, sighs and dreamily says, "Butterflies and flowers" we usually pour a bowl of Life cereal for little Caroline, it's her "very, very, very favorite!" Olive wakes up between 7 and 8 and eats Caroline will look at freshly showered and ready Adam and say, "You look handsome dad! That is a cute shirt." She continues to usually say, "So how's your school? (shrugs her shoulders and puts her hands out) "So tell me about it." When Olive starts getting fussy (and when Caroline says "I wanna watch a movie")we bounce and dance around to my new favorite song "Do you remember" by Jay Sean, and then "A whole new world" as requested by Caroline and Olive stares at this:
She instantly becomes mesmerized by the hearts. Looks like she is a hopeless romantic just like her mommy. It also looks like we will be celebrating Valentine's for an extended period of time this year so Olive can enjoy her garland...fine by me!
Last weekend was one of the best weekends that I've had in a long time. I had such a good time with my sisters and I still can't believe that my 40 degree Utah sisters wanted to come to 12-20 degree New Hampshire in the winter. Oh the pull that two sweet little girls have on their aunties. Caroline loved all the attention she got and definitely used her aunts free time to her advantage. There were tea parties, sticker parties, dancing, singing, dress-up, books to read, including the darling Library Lion which aunt Corinne brought her. Olive of course loved being held and cuddled non-stop. It was fun going places with two extra sets of hands. The first day we went to Maine to see the Nubble Lighthouse and stop in at the cutest restaurant. We dined on clam chowder, a salmon wrap with sweet potato fries, and an avocado crab melt with Havarti cheese. To top all that off we had some gooey blueberry crumble a la mode, and laughed later when we found out that Maine is the largest exporter of blueberries and toothpicks.
Boston also peaked my sisters interest so we traveled down there and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. We visited Harvard, Cheers, saw the Public Gardens (which I can't wait to go back and enjoy more) and Fenway Park. Not bad for 20 degree windy weather! Erika did an amazing job navigating to our different destinations. Caroline would say "Bouncy!, Bouncy!" when the brakes were hit due to crazy Boston drivers. She also imitated the GPS when the lovely computer voice said "recalculating route" Caroline said, "cal corclating rout" or some such darling nonsense. It had us rolling with laughter.
Most memorable of all, my sisters were here for little Olive's blessing. We wish all of our family could have been here, but we loved that we had Corinne and Erika. The morning of was crazy with lots of unhappy wails from sweet Olive. She must have felt pretty special in her dress because she was calm and content all through her blessing and church. Thanks for coming guys, it was fun to just relax and hang and THANK YOU for all the help! Come again soon. And coming to a New England winter this Saturday....Grandma Mary and Grandpa Wayne! Keep 'em coming guys, let's keep this futon warm.
Many times I have been caught in the trap of thinking "When I graduate from college, life will be so much better" or "When I have a different job, everything will be great." After often thinking things like this, I heard or read some where that you need to live in the moment. Don't say "I'll be happy when..." just be happy now! That has always stuck with me over the past few years and has made me look at things differently. Sure there are things I look forward to in the future...more time with babe dad, a garbage disposal, having a dishwasher, not having to go outside to get to our washer and dryer, a real couch that will fit through a door frame, a shower that's bigger than a refrigerator box...but I love, absolutely LOVE the simplicity of life right now. I enjoy our lack of closet space because it makes it so easy to not buy more stuff. We want for nothing. I love not having money (besides loans :) because I just don't shop, or plan trips, etc. This is a new concept for me and I was nervous about the very tight budget. It's opened my eyes a lot though. We are keeping it simple and it's nice and very refreshing. I also love this quote that a friend recently sent me: Author Anna Quindlen reminds us not to rush past the fleeting moments. She said: 'The biggest mistake I made [as a parent] is the one that most of us make. . . . I did not live in the moment enough. This is particularly clear now that the moment is gone, captured only in photographs. There is one picture of [my three children] sitting in the grass on a quilt in the shadow of the swing set on a summer day, ages six, four, and one. And I wish I could remember what we ate, and what we talked about, and how they sounded, and how they looked when they slept that night. I wish I had not been in such a hurry to get on to the next thing: dinner, bath, book, bed. I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less.'
I really can't believe that after "one more bedtime" (as I tell Caroline each day as we count down) my sisters will be here! There was talk of a visit in the Spring, and it is definitely not spring here in Concord, but they arrive tomorrow! Maybe I'll have a baby every winter. We have missed them so much and I truly can't believe they are coming. Corinne has 4 darling boys that I can't believe she is leaving for this trip. She can't bear to be away from them. She is the best mother and I learn a lot from her on how to parent. I admire how patient she always is with her four rambunctious boys. They are always doing something fun and when we were in Utah we loved going along. She's a spazz and we definitely have that in common. She can make all of us siblings laugh by her craziness. Erika is the major brain of the family. She is a pharmacist and I swear she became one with ease. We have had many exciting adventures together. We lived in Africa for a couple of months and bonded eating snail, showering in the rain, walking from village to village, and helping Erika get over illness. We backpacked through Europe with friends which was bliss. The hostels seemed like 5 star hotels after being in Africa! Erika is also naturally very athletic. Adam and I joined her two summers ago to run the 188-mile Ragnar relay. We were so glad she set it all up! I've always wantedto be like them in so many ways. Oh I heart them and am very touched that they are coming to visit!
We have been married 5 wonderful years. We live in Washington, DC where Adam is attending Law School and will graduate in the class of 2012. I stay home with our two little girls and I am loving every minute of it.