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A backlog of vacation statuses

All summer long, an urge to get out of hot Manhattan to cooler, more mountainous regions had been building in me. And finally, all the babies were born (beautiful stories, each one of them), and the morning after two all-nighters, Dan and I packed ourselves and the kids up and headed north. We spent several days at the ranch and several days in heaven — er, Colorado. The Fraser River ran through our front yard, and we kept our windows open at night for the cool breeze and the rushing sounds of the water.
We had very low connectivity to the internet for the first half of the trip, and I didn’t act addicted to social networking at all. It was how I should be all the time — living slowly, favoring real interactions over the obsession of Facebook, breathing in the presence of God rather than distracting myself from him. During that time I had a lot of things I would have shared with friends, had that worked in my introvert’s-paradise vacation. So now that we’re home, here are the things I would have said:
This recipe for blackberry cobbler from the Pioneer Woman is YUMMY. I was cooking for my in-laws, who eat low-carb to prevent diabetic symptoms, so I made this with 100% whole wheat. It still wasn’t low-carb, but at least we could feel good about the grains — and the blackberries were grown organically in their backyard. I also substituted butter for the Crisco.
This recipe for 100% whole-wheat pita bread is totally amazing! I made these breads to eat with tri-tip, roasted veggies, and some other low-carb stuff. My mother-in-law gets a special carb dispensation for fresh, homemade bread. She ate a lot. The next morning, we piled leftover tri-tip, scrambled eggs, cheese, and salsa on the remaining warmed-up pitas, for a sort of breakfast tostada. I am so making these pitas again — I’ve been nostalgic about them ever since the night I made them.
Our kids are getting big enough to do road trips really well. We take along chapter books and a DVD player for the *occasional* movie, and art supplies, and Legos or Trio. They entertain themselves and each other well. We never thought this day would come, but it has! We read The Castle in the Attic, by Elizabeth Winthrop, and are partway through The Thief Lord, by Cornelia Funke. They were bummed, because when we left for our trip, there was only one chapter left of The Silver Chair, and we forgot to bring the book along. That’s what happens when the mom is really sleep-deprived.
Speaking of reading, I read the first two Hunger Games books and am rabidly thinking about how to get a copy of the third. Although now I’m home, and all my work is sort of piled up around me. I also finished Henri Nouwen’s The Return of the Prodigal Son, which is just exactly what I needed to read as I learn to relate to the Father. And I read most of the Midwifery Today issue on second stage, and you birthy people out there, beware! I am going to pass it around! It about makes me hyperventilate with the truth and beauty contained therein.
Colorado was gorgeous as usual, but the pine trees have been tragically decimated by the pine beetle. Whole mountain slopes are either gray with dead trees or cleared to remove the fire hazard and maybe harvest the wood for something useful before it totally disintegrates. The Colorado blue spruces are not affected by this insect, but they don’t come close to filling in the holes left by the pines. Why is this happening? I don’t have much knowledge about it, but I understand that climate change is responsible because the winters haven’t been cold enough to keep the pine-beetle population down, and they just keep on reproducing and riddling the trees with holes, consuming the sap. The fire danger is really frightening. I would not want to be a firefighter in Colorado right now. As I mourn the pines, I rant inwardly at those who ridicule the concept of climate change.
And oh how we hiked. We wandered joyously four and five miles at a time. Jonathan hiked around a lake barefoot (4-5 miles), and I envied him his bodily connection with the mud, the rocks, and the tree debris.
We ate at a deli with this sticker on the countertop: “Don’t groom Mary Jane. — God.” I thought how, if I wanted to try marijuana, Colorado would be the place to do it. And I savored my yummy spinach-and-nut-burger sandwich and thought how lovely it was to be hippie and fit in.
Now we’re home, and I am taking the rest of this month and all of next month off from doula work, prenatals and all. I’ve needed a break for a while. But this package was delivered while we were traveling, and in it is a sphygmomanometer set, a stethoscope, and a fetoscope. I think I’m going to be doing some playing. πŸ˜‰


Trackbacks & Pingbacks


  1. * Terri says:

    Come to my house. Acquire Hunger Games. Watch NFNS. πŸ™‚

    Posted 6 years, 9 months ago
  2. * Sandie says:

    Great post! Thanks for sharing. Recipes, too!

    Posted 6 years, 9 months ago

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