Up and away!

Spring has arrived & with it my driving need to do all the things, every day, all at once.
The longer days also bring with the increased energy to get more done-not all the things, but more than Winter Jamé feels like bothering with.
Riding, hiking, DMV, house cleaning & writing all in the same weekend? Bring it on!

  
However, with springs comes blooming things, & the boyfriend is miserable outside the clean room he works in all day. Which is, really, everywhere for the next few months.

  
I’m also trying to get everything done because ride season has begun, & we set it off with a bang with what will probably be one of our longest road trips this summer. We headed off through the Gorge & up…& down, up, down, & finally up again, for six gorgeous, cloudless hours into Eastern Washington, just south of the Grand Coulee dam. 

  
Despite the fact-or perhaps because of the lack of trees pretty much everywhere but people’s yards, it was one of the most beautiful ride camps I’ve ever been to.  Maybe with the possible exception of Mt Adams, where we’ll be heading to on Memorial Day. As below, the view outside The Emerald Queen where I’d set up an air mattress that ended up being super warm & comfy for the kiddo & I, was breathtaking-yet also relaxing.

    
But the best thing about ride camp wasn’t the drive, the view, or even the food (although that was most excellent!)…it was friends. More specifically, friends I only ever see either on Facebook or at ride camp. Even though I totally am a camp hanger-on, seeing as I showed up with my gear, kid, & no horse, I was able to pitch right into helping without once feeling nosy or useless. 

  
In fact, my kid was far more useful than I was, keeping the teenagers from mischief, general giggly entertainment, & relating mixing electrolytes to chemistry. He’s multipurpose, this child is, & only once did he give me a heart clutching, oh please dear gods don’t kick him Belle! moment (she’s a good girl, she declined).

  
Kade’s other big benchmark this weekend was we drove for six hours both ways to get out there & back home, but thanks to Mommy throwing everything she had into making this a decent road trip-we made it fine. A year ago we couldn’t have gone on a six hour drive without another adult in the back to distract him. But between the iPad, endless snacks, legos & stickers books, ice cream from Dairy Queen, nap time & being able to control his own window, it went off without a hitch. We upgraded him to a belt positioning booster seat now that he’s big enough, & he loves it! He can reach everything, & it’s so much easier to get in & out of, including the fact he can buckle himself in & out!

 Five is shaping up to be a damn good year, & we’re going to make it to as many ride camps as my wiggle off early on Fridays schedule allows!

  

Who is 5 today?

  
Memories are a tricky thing, never perfectly trustworthy & apt to change or fade over time. But I have good reason to clearly recall what I was doing today, five years ago; labor! I wrote one of my most in depth blogs ever about it, but suffice to say it was a memorable event!
Even now, I can look back on how I brought my son into the world & draw strength from that. It’s a reminder that I’m doing pretty well for a first time Mom, & I have been making fairly solid choices (most of them anyway) since before he was born.

  
Today I have a golden, flirty, fully formed & yet still so much to discover little blondie who won’t stop growing & changing with each breath! I learn more from him & with him than in decades of schooling, & I never cease to be entertained. The best, of course, are the (thankfully decreasing!) wretched, woe is me, the world is bleak tantrums. You can’t help but laugh at what causes kids to go off the rails, #reasonswhymysoniscrying (today, no iPad before school, which has always been & will always be the rule).
I’ve practiced countless ninja moves, heard amazing stories of jet planes, friends & speed, accepted mud as a part of my daily life, cursed Legos when I find them with my bare feet, stocked up on Band-Aids of different kinds (Angry Birds, Star Wars, & of course, Cars), lost most of the pairs to his socks, & never cease to be amazed by how much pizza a 40 pound person can put away. And still I’ve not sucked in enough of that clean, sleeping little boy smell, felt the thump of his heart or the amazing amount of body heat put out when he crawls into bed with us to hide from a nightmare to get me through those teenage years I know are sulking just around the corner of those adorable fat cheeks & skinned knees.
We’ve welcomed Tom into our lives (I’m pretty sure he was accepted mainly on the basis of food & Lego provider by some of us). But at least we have someone to teach him the patience of fishing, the wicked coolness of a space video game, & an endless supplier of fart jokes (all farts real or imaginary are the most hilarious ever.)
I love you kiddo, & here’s to so many more Lego creations to build, puddles to become one with, rockets to launch, books to read & laundry to clean!