Archive for February, 2011

Snowiest February on Record

Thursday, February 24th, 2011

Whew.  We are just under a week of being done with this dreadful month of February.  It has been a long one, friends–and that is saying something for the shortest month of the year.

Let me start out with some updates on Bjorn–these are definitely the highlights of the month.  Nonni came out to visit from San Diego and taught him some fun new tricks of the toddler trade.  For instance, he now assumes the position of a track star at the starting line before running around in circles.  All you have to do is start saying “on your mark….” (Bjorn bends down, hands behind his back)  “get set…..” (he puts his hands to the ground)…”Go!”.  And he’s off–running and laughing hysterically around the house like a bat out of hell.  Speaking of bats…oh we’ll get to that part later.  He also now puts his hands to his head in an exasperated way whenever someone says “Oh for Pete’s sake!”.  It is highlarious.  His object permanence is still in full swing, as well–if you ask him “where’s Bjorn?” he covers his eyes with his hands and only takes them down when he’s ready to be “found”.  Such a fun age–and exhausting–but mostly fun.

Back to the aforementioned bats–Lars was up in the attic and put his hand against a beam to steady himself.  Beam was fuzzy.  Beam started squeaking at him.  Bats confirmed in the attic.  Now what?  Not totally sure—bats are supposed to be really helpful little creatures AND he’s just hibernating right now so we don’t have a guano problem up in the attic.  Later?  Not so sure what we’re going to do…He’s not IN the house, but he is in the attic…just waiting waiting waiting for spring to appear.  Aren’t we all my ugly little bat friend?  Aren’t we all?

Classes have been good but they are pretty intense.  They’ve actually been on the back-burner this past week since I had to take the GRE for my MPH application.  That was an adventure in patience and “what will be will be”.  I had signed up to take the test last Saturday.  I was psyched to be over and done with it since that evening Lars and I were going on our first date night in approximately forever.   Pacific Rim and Lewis Black.  So fun.  However, when I got to the testing center, they turned away about half of us because they could only get one half of the testing center up and running.  It was HORRIBLE.  I wanted to cry, be mad and fall asleep at the same time.  We still went out that night but I had the cloud of a pretty important test still over my head–even Lewis Black’s anger couldn’t alleviate the anxiety!  I ended up retaking it on Tuesday and I was very happy with the results.  So maybe there is a lesson in all of this….no, its really just that the GRE sucks and I never have to take it again.  (We hope).

Nonni left back for San Diego yesterday and this weekend Lars is off to the Upper Peninsula for a “winter camping adventure” with his little brother Mike.   Its a “Ma & Bjorn” weekend.   We’ll probably just watch some rom-coms (romantic comedies) and paint each others toenails.  We’re having some friends over for dinner on Saturday night–Bjorn is a great host.   Lars, on the other hand, will be camping in the snow in 8 degree weather surviving off of Power Bars (in both solid and gel form) and channeling Bear Gryllis for survival.  To be honest, not sure which of the two of us is going to have a more exhausting weekend.  What would you do?  Winter camping on Lake Superior or three days alone with a toddler who likes to corkscrew when you try and change his diaper?

…oh. And we’re supposed to get 7 inches of snow tonight.   February ain’t over, yet.

Winter Re-Cap

Friday, February 11th, 2011

For those of you reading this blog in places like, oh, San Diego, I have two things to say to you.  First of all….shove it.  Yes, I know you had perfect weather in January–dipping down in the the 50s at night and getting close to the 80s along the coast during the day.  Flip flop weather, if you will.  Yes, I know this.  Michigan has been cold and snowy–not TOO snowy–just perpetually snowy.  It means we have to shovel our driveway a lot.

Secondly, winter weather can be lots of fun!  Especially if you are a little boy and a little boy at heart (enter Bjorn and Lars).   Lars has essentially built an obstacle course in our backyard with a ramp with which to launch Bjorn off his sled.  Also about a quarter mile away is a fantastic sledding hill at Slauson Middle School and some great trails in Eberwhite Woods.  Its pretty cozy.  And we get to have fires in fireplaces, legitimately.  So, there.

Here are a few photos of our winter adventures this 2010-11 season:

...away we go!  Sledding in Eberwhite Woods

...away we go! Sledding in Eberwhite Woods

Makeshift Winter Obstacle Course in the Backyard

Makeshift Winter Obstacle Course in the Backyard

Snow.  D'lish.

Snow. D'lish.

Off to the sledding hill at Slauson Middle School

Off to the sledding hill at Slauson Middle School

Slauson Sledding Hill mission was a success (at least for Bjorn who got pulled back up the hill).

Slauson Sledding Hill mission was a success (at least for Bjorn who got pulled back up the hill).

Charlton House in Winter

Charlton House in Winter

We did have a great time in San Diego this Christmas, too.  It was fantastic seeing all my family.  This is something I’ve known for awhile but is always hardest at the holidays–there is no one who is geographically farther away from my family than me.  I’m the odd man out.  We also had a fantastic time with friends–including a walk on the beach with Alex and Katya and a maiden voyage (for me!) to Stone Brewery in Escondido with Geoff/Cheryl (Gherylff in Hollywood terms) and Colin/Jessica.   Guys, it was pretty much the latest I have stayed out since Bjorn made his grand entrance.  And that is to stay I was out past 9:30pm.

ISH!  Bjorn at the Birch Aquarium at Scripps Oceanography

ISH! Bjorn at the Birch Aquarium at Scripps Oceanography

At the Zoo with Zia Meredith.  Being a littly Zany.  Zee what I did Zere?

At the Zoo with Zia Meredith. Being a littly Zany. Zee what I did Zere?

Bjorn and Katia.  I love this photo.

Bjorn and Katia. I love this photo.

Ava & Bjorn at Stagecoach Park.  As Geoff puts it "Bjornyyyyyyy.  Don't run from your feeeeeelings!!!"

Ava & Bjorn at Stagecoach Park. As Geoff puts it "Bjornyyyyyyy. Don't run from your feeeeeelings!!!"

Life's a Beach.  With Nonni & Nonno at Swami's.

Life's a Beach. With Nonni & Nonno at Swami's.

And no trip to SoCal is complete without a little Calvin/Bjorn-a-palooza.  Calvin has this gentle giant beast of a dog that scared Bjorn at first but it was kind of a little highlarious watching him continue to be intrigued by Hobbes and continuously get closer and closer to him until he finally, with trepidation, was able to reach out and touch him.  Hobbes was a good sport (and is a very sweet giant of a dog!).  Also we were treated to meeting another college friend, Lara’s little boy, Emil.  It was the blonde boy convention.  They could all be excellent panhandlers in Sweden.

Emil, Calvin, and Bjorn.  Being Blonde and Adorable.  B & A.

Emil, Calvin, and Bjorn. Being Blonde and Adorable. B & A.

We skyped with Peachie Mama in Little Rock.  Here all the boys are taking their photo with her.

We skyped with Peachie Mama in Little Rock. Here all the boys are taking their photo with her.

So much else has been going on but its been so hard to keep track of in a linear fashion.  I literally cannot believe that it is already February!  We’re anxiously looking forward to a visit from Nonni this week who will be in town helping me study while I prep for the GREs next weekend.  I haven’t really studied that much (shhhh).  Its an interesting conundrum studying as a mom versus studying as a 20 something with literally no other worries rather than ‘who am I?  where am I going? how far to the nearest in n out?’.  I don’t mean to play this card but you just don’t understand competing priorities until you have a kid pleading with you “ma ma ma ma ma ma” and you’re trying to finish your homework in order to turn it in on time and you also haven’t cleaned the house in over three weeks.  Well, that’s just the way it goes sometimes.  Everything works out and it will all be worth it in the end.  We hope.