Today we flew to Reno and you got to meet your uncle Brett, aunt Jen, and cousin Kyle. Your uncle picked us up at the airport and ran from the car to meet us. I knew he wasn’t running to see your father or me; he couldn’t wait to get his first glimpse of you. Kyle was there also and just couldn’t wait to see you. He sat in the back with you and just watched you all the way to their house.
On the plane and ready for your second trip
Once we arrived at Brett and Jen’s house Jen came out to meet you. They have been anxiously awaiting meeting you. We all went inside and everyone got to hold you and look at you. Your cousin had a bag of gifts for you that he could not wait to give you. He and Sandy, Jen’s mom, picked out a bunch of cute clothes and even a pair of shoes for you. They all love you so much already; they’ve loved your for months, even before they met you.
Aunt Jen meeting you for the first time
Cousins – the first time you met. You’re eating one of the shoes Kyle gave you.
The first time Uncle Brett held you
After work today we decided to head to the Sun for dinner and drinks. I held you while I was eating, and you kept eyeing my pickle and trying to grab it; you were very persistent with trying to get your little hands on it. Your dad and I decided that a pickle couldn’t do much harm, and that in fact it’d probably feel good on your gums. So we decided to let you try it. Thus, your first taste of anything other than milk was a pickle! You made a curious face at first and pulled it away and examined it, but you stuck it right back in your mouth. I think you’re a fan!
Trying the pickle
Wondering about the taste
Examining the pickle before sticking it in again for another taste
The weather cooperated and they really got a handle on the fire yesterday. The smoke is much better today and we decided it’d be safe to have you go to the nanny’s, so I headed in to work. Afterwards we came home and it felt great to be home, even if things were still a bit messy and unorganized from packing up and heading out on Tuesday. We did decide to leave almost all of our valuables at nana and papa’s in case the fire gets bad again while we’re out of town. But it sure is nice to be home, safe and sound.
We stayed at nana and papa’s last night and today they departed for Reno. Your dad went into Boulder for work and said it was really smokey so we decided not to have you go to the nanny’s so I worked from home to watch you. Our house is still under ‘pre-evacuation’ and the fire is still going strong. They’re bringing in a lot more firefighters today so hopefully they’ll get a handle on it soon.
We ran out to grab lunch and I we stopped at a spot where we could see the Flatirons and try to view the fire. You could see smoke coming up from the mountains right behind our house, but the picture I got wasn’t that great.
Smoke visible from the mountains behind our house
Today we all experienced something that I hope we’ll never have to experience again – our first evacuation. It was actually a pre-evacuation, but really stressful and scary nonethelss. A fire broke out this afternoon in the foothills above our house. It was caused by lightening and was coined the ‘Flagstaff Fire’, named after the moutain that it was quickly incinerating. Although I’ve realised that many properties around this area come with high risk of natural disaster – flooding in areas closer to the creek and fire in properties backing to open space or in the canyons – I had never thought that we were in danger in this house.
Smoke rising from the fire behind our house
But today when the fire erupted and smoke was billowing down from the fire on the mountain only a mile and a half away, reality set in. We received a phone call notifying us that a pre-evacuation notice had been issued for our neighborhood, and that we should prepare to leave. With heavy smoke in the air and the sky turning dark behind our house, we decided to play it safe, pack up our valuables, and head to nana and papa’s. It was such a surreal experience. I’d never before thought through the process of evacuating, but I think we kept our composure and gathered everything quickly. Your nana was here and she helped a lot too.
Looking back it is quite interesting to consider the things that we grabbed. In addition to all of the obvious, irreplacable documents and items (birth certificates, passports, photos), I stuffed a bag full of my purses and boots. I’ve always thougth I’d give those things to you one day, and so I sure wasn’t going to leave them behind! Also as I ran around gathering items to take I found myself layering on more and more jewelry. Then I decided we should fill up our suitcases with clothes. But what do you pack when you might never return? Work clothes, casual clothes, your favorite clothes? I did a combination of clothes, but looking back it was a random assortment of items that I ended up with.
But in the end, the fact that we got out of here as a family, and with the dogs, ensured we really had everything that mattered. And hopefully we’ll never go through this ever again.
Enjoying the swing (and eating it too).
We’ve been trying to come up with activities to keep you entertained and active. You are such a bundle of energy and you always want to be engaged and moving. We pulled out the Exercauser a few weeks ago and it was a big hit, but you seem to be growing tired of that after a few minutes. This weekend Liz gave us a swing that hangs in a doorway, and today we put it up and you tried it out. I think you might be a bit too little for it; when we put you in it you just spun and spun and spun, twirling on your toes like a little dancer. We finally had to stop it from spinning as it was clear you weren’t able to stop it, and we didn’t want you to get sick or upset. But you seemed quite content. Although you’re not yet able to stand and jump up and down, you did seem pretty happy trying to bounce and bobble around. I think this might become one of your favorite toys!
Today we enjoyed one last lunch (for awhile) with our good friends, Deanna and John. They are moving to Singapore to teach for three years. Although they’ll be living far away, I’m sure we’ll see them over the next few years. They’ll visit CO periodically, and I’m hopeful we’ll have some travel adventures with them. We’re even hoping to meet them in Europe in a year or two. We had so much fun traveling with them last summer in Thailand, and the whole trip I kept thinking of you and how different our travels would be in the future. I was so excited to show you the world, and I still am! I cannot wait to start exploring with you.
Today we went over to nana and papa’s again and you met your Great Aunt Margie and Uncle Bryant. It’s so fun that you’ve been able to meet so many relatives.
This afternoon we went to Liz’s and you played with (or observed, actually, and got lots of loving from) Maci. You seemed so intrigued by her ability to move around, and hand you things, and you were super tolerant of her desire to hug you and give you kisses. You two were very cute together! I’m excited to watch as you grow and start playing with Liz’s two little girls; such fine times you’ll have together.
Tonight you met your great Aunt Helena. She lives in Washington state, and I was lucky to get to see her frequently when I was up there for school. She was always so nice to me, taking me out for lunches and dinners, which were such a treat to a poor college student. You have now met all of your papa’s four sisters!
Some days everything works like clockwork – you sleep great and predictably at night, the morning goes smoothly as we get ready for work, you do great with the nanny, and you’re happy and easy to read in the evenings. It’s days like this that we feel like we really have a handle on this whole parenthood thing, and like we have you figured out. It’s funny how one smooth day can make us feel so put-together and confident, but we know when to appreciate a rare event!
Today was one of these days. Everything just went smoothly. And this evening we took you to our soccer game. We’ve been struggling with how to keep playing soccer together but also how to make sure that you’re taken care of and happy. Today our strategy worked great! The game was early, at 5:45 pm, and it was an outdoor game. So we each decided that we’d each play one half while the other one watched you. We brought a huge shade tent-like thing that I’d bought a few weeks ago and set that up. We put you in there, unzipped the windows for a little breeze, and you were content; you even took a little nap. It was so nice to be out and playing soccer, but also to have you happily there alongside us. Plus, as an added bonus, the crinkly sound and plastic smell of the tent were a good introduction to some of the sensations you’ll experience next week when we go camping.
The action on the field wasn’t enough to keep you engaged apparently