Saturday, April 19, 2014

Vermont and a Much-Needed Weekend

This was a crazy week!

I went to work Monday and had a regular day.  Tuesday morning my colleagues and I headed up to Vershire, VT, to Milton's The Mountain School (TMS).  Basically,  high-school juniors from all over the country can study for a semester at TMS.  It's a working farm, so in addition to studying (and the curriculum, classes, and grading are no walk in the park), the students shear sheep, milk cows, cook, wash dishes, harvest crops, and learn outdoors stuff like orienteering and survival skills.  The experience culminates in a three-day-long "solo" out in the wilderness.  They cannot use any electronics and have to last three days in the wild with nothing to do but a notebook and stuff to read.

Anyway, we go up to do some college counseling for the kids to make sure they don't fall behind while they are up there.  The kids are so fascinating, it's a great time.  Plus the food is absolutely amazing.  The salads use lettuce that is grown right there on the farm and is harvested just a few hours before you eat it.  I've never tasted anything there over the past two years that wasn't delicious.  We arrived Tuesday on time for lunch, prepped folders, and then had a group meeting (I had to meet with 6 kids while up there) and four individual meetings.  Then we had dinner and drinks with the head of school.  Then we were off to the Devil's Den in Chelsea, VT, where Rhoda (4th or 5th generation Vermonter) took good care of us.  Rhoda is a hot ticket!

When we woke Wednesday morning, there was snow on the ground and it was freezing.  Actually it was worse than freezing: 22 degrees!  Here's what the mountain school looked like:

The dining hall is really cool.  They have couches in the middle of the room, and they have brief meetings before meals.  Before dinner, we heard a teacher and student perform.  The student played the guitar and sang, and the teacher accompanied him.  It's such a cool place!

The place is very sustainable.  They have compost toilets (but running water), borax for soap, and they use bandanas for napkins--no paper.

After we finished at the mountain school around 11AM on Wednesday, we drove home and stopped at Simon Pearce for lunch on the way home.  That restaurant (I think it's in Quichee, VT?) has got to be one of my absolute favorites.  Plus, everything tastes better because Milton's paying and I can order what I really want!  I had the best salad I've ever tasted in my entire life.  I googled the salad and Simon Pearce and came up with the recipe!  Have to try it!!  They use malt vinegar in the dressing--I never would have thought of that!

We didn't get home, because of traffic, until around 5:45PM, and then I hit traffic on rte. 24, too.  I just made it home in time to see the boys before they went to bed.

Thursday I went to Milton but chaperoned senior skip day, which turned out to be a trip to the Big Apple Circus in Government Center.  I hate circuses, and I was probably under 10 years old the last time I went.  I hate the idea of them.  But I have to admit, this was pretty cool!  They had horses and dogs, and that was the part I could do without.  I think it's terrible to have horses in the CITY where they can't run around.  Anyway, it was a fun morning.

Friday was a busy day because I was making up for lost time in the office.  I was so glad when the weekend rolled around!

Today we didn't have music class because it's April vacation (although not for us!).  We had banana pancakes for breakfast and then Carlos took the boys to Mini's house while I went to the dentist and headed for the laundromat.  It turns out our washing machine needs to be replaced...the new one doesn't come until next Saturday!  While the boys napped after lunch, I did some raking in the back yard.  It was hard work because the leaves were pretty wet and it made it hard to drag the tarp filled with leaves to the back of the yard to dump.  But it looks better!  Unfortunately, we still have a ton more yard work to do.

When the boys woke, we headed to Bird Park in Walpole.  It's a huge park with paths that run through it.  They also have a basketball court/paved area where they have a bunch of cozy coupes and tricycles out for people to use.  The playground is for 2-5 year olds (perfect size!), and it's pretty big.  I took the boys there last summer, but this was the first time Carlos had ever been.  The boys loved it!

Busy day tomorrow, too.  I'll post about it and take as many pictures as I can!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Crazy Days

I have a random assortment of photos to post. 
On Weekends we've taken to allowing the boys to come into bed with us for a little while in the morning.  We don't sleep--we just cuddle and read or play.  It's nice to start the day off like that. 

I've been trying to make smoothies for the boys more often because it's the only way I can (sometimes) sneak fruit into Adrian.  The boy hates every fruit known to man.  Just won't eat it. 

While Adrian drank calmly out of his big boy cup, Sebastian played with Mack...

Well, Adi liked my mango smoothie so much he had a mango mustache!

On my birthday, the boys woke up at 5:20AM!  Yikes!

They love their Easter fans from Grumpy!

Yesterday, the boys made a mess with chocolate covered frozen bananas at BJ's.  The chocolate was everywhere...and of course, Adi didn't eat the banana.  He just kissed off/licked off the chocolate.  Gross.

Then we played outside for a bit before dinner.

What nice weather we had this weekend!  Wonderful...

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Weekend Fun

I'm a week behind on posting!  Last weekend was great!  Our NICU nurses came to visit Saturday night.   This was our third attempt at getting together because we had a snowstorm in February and had to postpone, and then both Marcy and Juju got the flu.  Finally the stars aligned!  Saturday morning, Carlos took the boys to Music Together class with my mother, which was awesome because it meant I didn't have to go.  I hate that class and staying home allowed me to do some housework and also get ready for the evening with the nurses.

We had some fun in the morning waiting for Marcy and Juju.

It was so nice to see Marcy and Juju again, and the boys took to them instantaneously.  Of course, they have met Marcy and Juju before, but the last time they saw them was last August, and they were still too little at that point to really remember anyone long term.  I've talked to them a little bit about who Marcy and Juju are, and they know that the nurses took care of them when they were babies, although I don't think they get what that really means.  Anyway, they randomly ask for Marcy and Juju and before the visit they kept saying that they were going to sing and dance for Marcy and Juju or "show 'em" their toys.  When the nurses arrived, they got right down to playing and flirting with them; there was no warm-up period or need to check them out.  It was strange--in a good way--and I was so glad that they seemed to just intuitively understand how much Carlos and I love these ladies.  Sunday morning, the boys woke up and Adrian immediately asked for Marcy and Juju and Sebastian called them on his pretend phone.  It was cute.

Sunday we had a morning play date with another set of boy/boy twins.  The mother works with Carlos at Meditech and they are only 3 or 4 days older than my boys.  We went to the sheep pasture in Easton to see the animals and then to the playground.  It was great because they have every bit as much energy as my boys.  It was hard to keep them all going in the same direction, but was a lot of fun.  My boys like those boys as much as 28 month old twins can like other kids.  We had a blast.

Sunday afternoon, Carlos took the boys to Mini's house to play and I stayed home to finish our 2 Square Foot Gardens.  Carlos built the frames and then I laid the landscape fabric, newspaper, soil, grid, and then planted the seets and put the plastic "greenhouse" over the gardens.  We'll see.  I hope I'm able to grow something!  I planted broccoli, cauliflower, and parsley from seedlings (not sure how they will do--they were leggy to start and I never hardened them off because I had pretty much given up on them since they were short light in the house) and kale, spinach, chard, and a lot of varieties of lettuce from seed.

Fingers crossed!

Finally, here are some random shots of the boys.

Note the McQueen rain boots...

Helping Papa fix the wobbly chair

Mad Faces