All posts by Andrew

Exploring

Piper and I went on a lovely walk along the trails across the street from our house. Highlights included wildflowers and some wild turkeys.

Only two miles, but it was hot and the hills had me winded. I need to make this a daily routine.
Turkey parent on the left. You can just see one of the youngsters on the right. (Baby turkeys, I just found out, are known as “poults.”)

In the following video clip, you can see two poults fly up into a tree just as we come around the bend. Then a third one struggles to get aloft and follows the first two.

Poults taking flight.
Massive bumble bee on one of our flowers when we got home.

Blustery Day

It was a lovely Sunday with a mix of productive and leisure activities. Griffin had a good friend over. I spent time exploring Menards and figuring out how to setup our wired and wireless network. Sarah and the kids went on a walk. We met some friendly neighbors. Lots of small things were checked off our to do lists (e.g., new cord for garage light, locate water valve for fridge, replace flickering lights, program garage door remotes, etc.).

Griffin’s favorite breakfast.
Quality time in the utility room trying to figure out how the cable setup is organized.
I still can’t quite believe that this is our view.
A beautiful, wet, blustery day.
Closer to sunset from the front sidewalk.

The Band’s Back Together

Or at least our family band.

Griffin and Sarah returned this evening from their separate adventures up north. Sarah was preparing for trail crews at three different forest service sites (as part of her job with Mobilize Green). Griffin was backpacking on Isle Royale where he had a ton of fun and apparently fed every bloodsucker on the island (by the look of his legs).

We’ll add more details in the coming days. I’m just glad we managed to locate pillows and sheets for everybody.

Sarah with our proud backpacker.
Happy dog.

Improvisation

Today was mixed. I felt like I spent much of it looking for items that I couldn’t find (hidden in boxes I have yet to locate). Vegetable peelers, lotion, kitchen knives, sugar, etc. All minor things, but it is frustrating to reach for something simple and then realize that you have no idea where it is.

On the other hand, Maggie was a magnificent helper today. She tackled mowing the lawn, pumping up the pool, and using the central vacuum.

Lawn mowing champion.
Pumping up the pool.
Central vac is pretty cool.
Too muggy to eat on the porch and the table is still covered with boxes, so we improvised. Astute observers will note the gourmet ravioli by Chef Boyardee. We spare no expense when it comes to our children’s nutrition.
And the obligatory wet dog. (This was a big upgrade from the cramped water table!)

Bumblebees

We discovered a large colony of bumblebees living in the mulch at the back of our house. I’ve spotted other ground hives before (e.g., yellow jackets) but never bumblebees. The picture doesn’t include any of the drama, but there are numerous entrances hidden in the bark. They depart to visit the flower garden and return visibly laden with golden pollen on their rear legs.

A bumblebee nest in the mulch.

Progress

Grandma Pam spent the day with us in the new house today. She was a godsend, bringing us some delicious food, helping to unpack boxes in the kitchen, and spending hours rehabilitating our mangy couch.

This might not look like much, but the back of the couch previously featured a large original art piece by Oliver (“Untitled,” Sharpie on Upholstery).
Ok, it’s a work-in-progress, but you can walk to the door now. (You can slide the slider back and forth between yesterday’s picture and today’s.)
We’re spending more time than expected on the front porch; it’s lovely in the morning and evening. (Alas, the green couch in the background doesn’t fit where we were hoping it would go.)
Ice cream brings the smiles.
The water table wasn’t a one-time thing. Piper generally hops up into it anytime I play ball with her and she gets hot.

Maggie is getting rather clever. Conversation this evening, starting with my question:

“Should we go exploring after dinner?”
“No!”
“We can walk down the sidewalk and see where it goes. There are some trails in the park up there.”
“That sounds long.”
“Not too long!”
“What about ticks?”
“The ticks won’t get us.”
“Hmm. But don’t you think mama would want to be with us for our very first hike at the new house? I think we should wait until she gets back on Friday.”

Buried in Boxes

Our first full day in the new house was focused on our movers. They unloaded our 13 crates of stuff and hauled away a moldy piano left by the previous owner. Our spacious, spartan new home has become a cardboard labyrinth. It’s a bit overwhelming.

In the midst of the moving chaos, I found many moments of joy today playing with Piper and the kids in the back yard.

Sunrise over the house.
Enjoying the piles emerging from the truck.
The garage begins to overflow.
Piper doesn’t know what to make of everything.
Somehow we will find a place for everything.
Grandma Pam’s stupendous pasties for dinner.
We began decorating while Sarah is out of town. 😋
After some awesome sprinting, Piper decided to curl up in the water table, happy as can be.

First Day Update

As posted previously, we received the keys and moved into the new house this morning. In short order, Sarah headed up north for her new job. She’ll be back on Friday, returning with Griffin. Until then, Oliver, Maggie, Piper, and I will hold down the fort.

Despite the many tasks we needed to tackle today, we had a lot of fun in the new place. My favorite part was throwing the ball with Piper in the back yard. She loved that she could sprint!

Maggie and Oliver, I suspect, had their best time when our friends came over and they played some epic games of hide-and-seek.

A few more first day pics below.