20 August 2010

Play ball!

We recently went to a minor league baseball game here in town. The State College Spikes, to be exact. It had been FOREVER since I'd been to a minor league baseball game. The last game I'd attended was with J a little over five years ago on our honeymoon in Alaska. Considering I spent three summers of my late teen years practically living at the ballpark, this was far too long away from the diamond.

My solution: propose a family outing to see the Spikes on one of the many Fireworks Nights. That way I get my baseball fix, the rest of the family gets some baseball exposure (first game for both kiddos), and they'd want to stay until the end because there would be fireworks! Win-win.

At the park.

Yay baseball! (and yay beer too!)

Cute, new stadium. The team's only been here 5 years. Attendance was around 4,500, comparable to an average night for the Indians.

The game was not spectacular but Single-A ball rarely is. The pitching was mediocre, the catcher had an off-night, and the Spikes lost 4-2. But I had a good time, and I think the rest of the fam did too. Plus FIREWORKS!

I love that man. Great Papa, supportive partner, and sexy to boot!

Roo LOVED the fireworks. He kept pointing at them in awe.

I think I'll be able to convince them to go again soon. Yay!

19 August 2010

Up the slide

Yes I'm one of those parents. The ones that let their kids go up the slide. I try my hardest to emphasize the importance of only going up when there aren't other kids around, or when they're not near your particular slide. It doesn't always work, but I try.

That disclaimer is simply to reassure you that while I'm trying to raise respectful and courteous little people, I also encourage their daring behavior to some extent.

Witness my 10 month old crawling up the slide:

Apologies for the sideways video and lack of sound. My little point-and-shoot camera takes pretty crappy video but that's all I had with me.

18 August 2010

Backtrack to Black Moshannon

Awhile back I wrote about our 'splorin' adventure to Black Moshannon State Park. Now that I've found the camera cables I wanted to share a few of the photos from that outing.

This is a flower from the non-native orchid, Epipactis helleborine.

Black Moshannon Lake. Lots of waterlilies.

Photo by Doodle.

Doodle & Papa botanizing. She found some sundews, which are cute little carnivorous bog plants.

Reading the informational signage.

This is the Indian Pipe (Monotropa uniflora), a holoparasitic mycotrophic plant. That means it doesn't photosynthesize and relies entirely on food taken from other plants by way of a connection to a fungal intermediary to their roots. Really dang cool.

It was everywhere.

Me & my minions, futilely searching for frogs.
Maybe we'll find some next time.

15 August 2010

Yay humidity?

Now that we live in the land of humidity, it's become apparent that...

(look closely - can you see it?)

... Roo has curls!

13 August 2010

Best of

Here are just a few of my favorite photos from our moving road trip.

Cute kids spooning in the hotel bed.

Happy to be out of his car seat, and we were only in Wyoming.

Vedauwoo, WY. Very pretty, and far less developed than the City (which makes it hard to find trails to the climbs.) I'd love to go there again someday.

Playing on rocks at Vedauwoo while Papa climbed.

Dry rocks and dry heat. Makes me miss the West. Kinda.


12 August 2010

The Secret Playground

When we were living in the apartment we discovered a path that led to The Secret Playground. This is a chronicle of our second adventure there.First you find the apartment complex playground. Don't get sidetracked there, though, because the adventure is just beginning. Keep going!

Find the corner where the fences come together, and go through the tunnel/cave/secret passage.

Keep going!

Walk through the "jungle," speculating about the presence of monkeys, tigers, and dragons.

Up and over the little hill...

...and back down...

(little brothers like adventures too. Moms, well, they have to come along. I guess.)

Ooh, a butterfly!

and wild strawberries!

and bluejay feathers!

There's the playground! RUN!!!

Slide down...

...then climb back up.
(there's no other kids here, so it's okay, Mom.)

Roo sandwich.

There's one of the jungle monkeys!

We may have to go back to the apartment complex just to make the journey to The Secret Playground again.

Found: camera cable!

Now to get all caught up on sharing the past month and a half of photos. I may just go back and update previous posts with photos, but I'll let you know when I have.

For now, some photos from yesterday at the park.

Yes, he's trying to RUN.

Roo likes the Merry Go Round (aka puke-o-matic). I tried to take him off and he started shrieking, wanting to get back on.

Testing out the walking skills - moving between supports while spinning.


Doodle was in charge of pushing, I was in charge of slowing it down.
(typical Mom)

07 August 2010

Getting settled

We're in the house, getting settled. I'd say the past couple of weeks have been a whirlwind, but I feel like I've been saying that for the past two months.

Oh wait, I have.

A couple weeks ago I attended the Pollinator Conference here @ PennState while J was a full-time papa. Met a bunch of bee folks here and made some good contacts. Presented a poster and did some schmoozing. Also hung out with some BeeLabbers, drinking beers and showing them what little I know of State College so far. After the conference J was scrambling to get his presentation for Botany ready, then took off to R.I. for 4 days.

He flew out on the 31st, the day we had to vacate the apartment, so I was scrambling to get all of our gear we'd unpacked repacked and back to the storage unit. The kids & I stayed in a hotel, then got the keys to the house the following morning. My brother flew in that afternoon and helped me haul beds and some essentials to the house. In keeping with tradition (tradition being that I traumatize my sibs by losing something large & important off my vehicle on a busyish highway), we had to reload & retie the mattresses after they slid off the Jeep just as I stopped on the shoulder. Lesson learned, and thank goodness for protective mattress bags.

(My sister got to experience a faulty bike rack dropping my bike onto the trailer yoke, inches from hitting the road, in an I-5 construction zone in Portland. I think my sibs may start requesting that nothing be attached to the vehicle when they ride with me. I wouldn't blame them.)

The next day we loaded up a BIG Uhaul trailer with 2 loads of our stuff and hauled it all to the house. Bro & I alternated between hefting boxes of books (holy hell, how many books do we own?!) and resting our arms while entertaining the kids. I am so very very VERY grateful for all his help, patience and endurance. I owe him big.

After The Day of The Trailer we took it easier, slowly unpacking boxes and scouting thrift stores for furniture. Both Doodle & Roo loved having Uncle T here and were sad to see him go. J flew in 16 hours before T flew out, meaning even more transitions and change for an already transitioned-out Doodle. So she's been a bit crabby with so many changes and all the un-fun house setup stuff going on. Hopefully soon we'll have her Very Own Purple-rific Room(!) set up and she'll start to feel more at home here.

In all the bustle we still managed to celebrate J's 31st birthday yesterday. I picked up a wet bottom shoofly pie at the farmer's market for dessert. Not the most appetizing name, but yum that pie was good. That plus a new-to-us comfy chair, some beer, and a movie on demand courtesy of internet! at home! made for a nice evening to celebrate my very favorite person. Happy birthday my love.