Click here to see it
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Click here to see it
Monday, May 11, 2009
Friday, as I mentioned, was our 10th anniversary. Coincidentally Roan's daycare had scheduled date night for Friday. And Jen and Micah agreed to pick Roan up for us, so we were able to go out for margaritas, dinner, ice cream and a movie! Arwen also took me shopping for a couple of things I've been pining for: a book and a big fat yarn gift certificate.
When we got home this is what we found:
All new dinner plates, salad plates, bowls, silverware, juice glasses, water glasses, wine glasses, champagne glasses, and serving plates! I guess had mentioned one day in passing to Jen that I wished you could re-register for dishes on your 10th anniversary, and sure enough she - with the help of our parents - made it so! She coordinated with my moms and dads to pitch in together for this incredibly generous gift. And then she ran around like crazy buying all this stuff, and setting it up for us to return home to.
The thing she couldn't have known is that I had just been online looking at THOSE dishes. But I was only hoping to get the salad plates and bowls, not every dang piece in the set! Much less new glasses! We've broken a ton of glasses over the past 10 years (we had still been using the ones we got as wedding gifts.) I've never even had champagne glasses! I am feeling so spoiled!! I once saw a bumper sticker that says "I aspire to be the person my dog thinks I am." Well I aspire to be the person my family thinks I am!
I was so touched I was in tears. A lot of tears. At one point Arwen said, "Honey you have to stop crying! You're freaking me out." I was overwhelmed. The best part is, every single day we use those dishes (and you know we'll make em last a looooong time) we will think of this surprise and all the care and thought and love that went into it.
Saturday we slept in (wow!) and then Jen, Roan and I went to Lindsay's baby shower. (Lindsay, you may remember, is Roan's former nanny.) It was a lot of fun. I was so overdue for a haircut I cringe at this first photo. Oh well.
Saturday afternoon we hung out with Andye and McKenna.
Saturday was also G-Pop's birthday.
Then Sunday of course was Mother's Day. Arwen fixed me breakfast in bed, and I got to open some cards and a really sweet present from Roan. She made a handprint in clay, then painted it. She had obviously been well coached because she kept saying "It's your Happy Mothers Day today Mommy!" all day long. How nice to have a day that I get to pause to feel truly grateful to be her Mama.
Sunday night Arwen left for a business trip in Houston. It just doesn't quite feel like home when he's away, but we're keeping our chins up.
Oh, one other minor triumph to report. I had a major success in the kitchen that was especially gratifying for three reasons: 1) I was able to use up an entire bunch of bananas before they went bad, 2) It's my first real recipe to make up (usually I use existing recipes, and then purposely choose not to follow them), and 3) It's a baking recipe!!! I mean baking is, as everyone knows, chemistry. Though I consider myself a chronic and brazen recipe violator, it is with EXTREME trepidation that I would consider making changes to a baking recipe. I mean come on, this is baking at altitude; half the time even when you follow the recipe it comes out crappy!
And yet my little creation turned out. Really, it's super yummy. AND it has some super healthy ingredients. I wanted to take a recipe I knew was really good, and dial down the sugar a bit, crank up the bananas and throw in some wheat germ. You'll never even taste the healthy part. It is yummy, a coffee cake with some substance that will leave you feeling full (since it's high in fiber) and won't give you a major sugar crash. Enjoy!
Heather's Banana Oatmeal Crumb Cake
1/2 c whole wheat flour
1/4 c ground flax meal
1/4 c wheat germ (don't be frightened!)
1/4 t salt
1 t baking soda
1-1/3 c rolled oats
1/2 c butter, softened
1/2 c packed brown sugar
1 t vanilla
2 T butter, melted
3/4 c rolled oats
1/4 c brown sugar
1/2 t cinnamon
2 T chopped walnuts (optional)
1. Combine dry ingredients
2. In another bowl cream together butter and sugar. Beat in eggs, bananas, and vanilla.
3. Add flour mixture.
4. Pour into greased 8 in square pan
5. Mix topping ingredients together until crumbly and distribute evenly over top of cake.
6. Bake at 350* for 40-45 minutes.
Friday, May 08, 2009
Our first day on the Appalachian Trail
Saturday, May 02, 2009
To get ready for the big event we did virtually no training at all. Neither of us had even been in a pool in a year, and then that was just holding Roan in her floaties, not swimming laps. I do not even own a bike, and on my one attempted training ride last week I got a flat tire 3 blocks from the house. The only thing we have been doing on a regular basis is running.
I have to say, it was a lot of fuss and hubub getting ready for this event. So many pieces of equipment and clothing to remember - bike, helmet, swimsuit, towel, gloves, bike pants, swim cap... And then add to that all the supplies necessary to keep a 2 year old fed, dry and occupied for 3 hours. We were up late last night getting everything together, and we were up by 5:30 this morning even though the race didn't start till 9.
When we got to the rec center we went to stage our bikes and gear in what they call the "transition area." This is where you keep all your junk, and it's the place you come back to before and after each event. This weekend Denver is taking a break from the gorgeous spring weather with dismal gray skies, highs in the 40s and rain. Ironic that in a place that gets 300+ days of sunshine, somehow we would be shivering in the cold barefoot in nothing but our swimsuits waiting for the race to start.
But before the race could start we got our RFID ankle chips for keeping your time, and got our bodies marked with our race numbers. It felt so official! All the while Roan was toddling around with her bucket of toys.
Our friends Kelly and Lee Ann joined us at the event. Actually they're the ones that suckered us into it to begin with. They run triathlons all the time, much longer ones too. They are gearing up for a half ironman this summer in Napa, which I think involves a 1 mile swim, 50 mile bike ride and 13 mile run. Yikes!
The order for all tris is swim - bike - run. This is mostly for safety reasons. Although at first blush it sounds "refreshing" to finish up with a dip in the pool, you'd probably drown if you did. Man, the swim sure took it out of me. I managed to swim one lap freestyle at what was a rather modest pace before I had to switch to backstroke for the remaining 9 laps. I couldn't swim without panting, and I couldn't pant with my face in the water. I realized I may not be a big fan of sports that make it difficult for you to breathe while doing them; I noticed oxygen is kind of useful when exercising.
They don't allow you to bring anything into the pool area other than your goggles (which we did not have) so that meant running wet and barefoot through a parking lot in 40* temperatures. Which would've been a lot worse had I not been so heated up from the swim. It wasn't actually all that bad.
Next we jumped on our bikes. Arwen was a couple minutes ahead of me in his swim time, so when I got to my bike he was just on his way out. I did a quick dry off and wardrobe change and was not far behind him. And then POOF just as I was getting going my bike blew a tire. Another flat! Luckily Kelly and Lee Ann had a bike to loan me, or else my race would've been over. As it was, after those few minutes scurrying around I was very nearly the last person on the course. I'm grateful to have had that bike to ride, but it felt like I was on a big wheel, it was sized so small!
After 4 laps on the bike course it was time for the run. That was the hardest 2 miles I've ever done! It felt like I was running on stumps. I had been worried a little about my left ankle, which I've been having a little trouble with (I'm getting a new pair of orthotics which should fix the problem) but it didn't bother me at all. Instead my right foot cramped up! But not badly enough to stop my run.
Kelly and his kiddos came out on that last leg of the course with Roan to cheer us on. That really gave me a boost! And then I saw Arwen coming the other way finishing up his race. Before long I was crossing the finish line too. I was pretty tired, but more than anything I was HUNGRY!! After enjoying a HUGE breakfast we were pooped! We headed home and the whole Vaughan family enjoyed a long nap.
I woke up at 4:30 PM and found that time had no meaning. I was fairly certain I could easily sleep another 5-6 hours. Alas, indulgent sleep schedules are no longer in the cards for us. Roan was awake but there was no way I could get out of bed. Luckily she was content to play with her toys while we summoned the strength to rejoin the world of the living. She recently got a new tool set, which she will immediately inform you is "like Daddy's tools. For to fix it." She would bring a little wooden screwdriver or wrench into our room, give it to one of us, and say "Here guys. This for you. This for you sharing. Ok guys." So cute, our little activity director.