Saturday, September 5, 2009

Is there a Master’s of Science in Diapers?

When I was in graduate school, I hated my evenings home. My evenings home were filled with guilt…"I should be writing that paper, reading that chapter, working on that project, trying to figure out what the heck this class is about…what school do I go to again?" I carefully (hah!) became pregnant right before I graduated. I also spent my most uncomfortable months fighting nausea while also taking the HARDEST CLASS OF MY ENTIRE CURRICULUM and also working 20 hours of overtime a week. But, I'm not bitter. Anyhow, when I graduated I wanted to celebrate with champagne; instead, I went on a trip back to my roots with my husband and little one snuggled up in my belly. Really though, I wanted to cheer and dance and sing and just not think about anything for, oh, four million-trillion years. What a relief.

Upon returning from our whirlwind tour of Montana, Yellowstone Park, and Grand Teton National Park, we settled into the reality that, yes, we were going to become parents; thus, we may want to turn the barren and purple room left by the previous owners into something a little more suitable for a 0-yr-old. We started looking at baby gear and trying to figure out what all we needed. Holy cow. If you are even thinking about traipsing into Babies R Us any time before the baby is born, lord help you. It will beat you up and spit you out like a guy who runs a deli in New York (if you have never experienced a real New York Deli in…New York…then you may not know what I'm talking about).

Escaping from the world of playards (not PLAYPENS…WHAT KIND OF PARENT DO YOU THINK WE ARE? We are not LOCKING UP OUR INFANT like some common criminal), diaper wipe warmers, cribs, and (please, help me) NURSERY THEMES (ugh), we went to REI. You know, that warm and friendly place that has gear for EVERY WEATHER CONDITION POSSIBLE, including those days when it's cold and rainy but you are hot and sweaty and need to stay warm but need to let the hot out? No? You aren't familiar with that weather pattern? Well, then you will not understand why the first piece of baby equipment we ever bought was this:

But, I digress.

Back to my story. So, we got all prepared for our little jewel. We argued over names (and those of you who know me even slightly well, will recognize the name Kalina). Then, we were ready. Then, we waited. I had SO MUCH FREE TIME TO WAIT. Then the baby was born and I went on maternity leave. You know, someone once spoke to me about maternity leave as though it was some sort of extra-long vacation. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Ahhh, innocence. Now, more than 11 months later, I am here thinking about HOW EASY I HAD IT in graduate school. What was I complaining about again? There is a constant set of sippy cups that need cleaned, a high chair to be scrubbed, toys to be picked up, laundry to be done, and don't get me started on the diaper genie (and its outhouse effect).

Of course, hearing Miss Kyra babble in her crib in the morning is like getting a gazillion graduate degrees over and over again. So, I guess this is still better than being back in graduate school.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Somebody Help Me...I'm Lazy

Since when did 6 years pass so quickly? And what happened to the hair that I could put into braided pigtails?
Somebondy help! I am getting lazier by the minute! Must...stop...watching...television...


Monday, August 3, 2009

I left my ________ in Logan, UT

Who was it that sang I Left My Heart in San Francisco? Tony Bennett (according to Google -- my most "trusted" resource). I left something in Logan, UT...

Well, we recently returned from a "vacation"...if you could call it that. I have been trying to decide how I wanted to write up this post and, seeing as how I have been talking at length to other people about our recent adventure, I didn't feel like writing anything. I am...

Let me start out by saying that we learn a lot on every trip that we've ever gone on. For example, we have learned that when people are packing up your necessities for a trek through the Peruvian Andes, it is very important to make sure that all items are secured properly (or your backpack will fall out on some remote, dusty road in the middle of nowhere).
Another example: you can never be too dry and paying a few Euros for a shower on a day like this is well worth it. And, early on during this trip, we have also learned that “sharing” a bed (I use that term loosely) with a 10-month-old will result in NO ONE getting any sleep.

In addition: if you are going to need emergency surgery while on vacation, do it when you are (1) close to a hospital and (2) have grandparents who are willing to take a 10-month-old at a moment’s notice (along with limited instructions: “just give her some milk and whatever you eat.”). See the picture below? I had no idea that what I was about to encounter.
In a nutshell, our vacation went like that. The best part was: we got to drive home (2 days) with said infant in the backseat of the car who began screaming each time we even approached the pickup truck.
I think the worst part was not being able to spend as much good, quality time with family. Like Kyra's favorite cousin:
I also left something in Logan, UT: my appendix. I guess you don’t need that anyhow.


Friday, July 10, 2009

Extraordinarily Ordinary

Once upon a time, I was a young, active, energetic, impulsive, sometimes feisty woman. I climbed mountains and posted pictures of my adventures all over my cubicle to fantasize about upcoming weekends and vacations. I had a list of Colorado’s fourteeners posted near my computer screen, so I could “plan” which ones I would do during which weekends. I’d think, “We can drive out, pack in on Friday, climb the peak on Saturday, hike out Sunday…” That wasn’t too far from how many of our weekends would go.

I would be thinking about this while at work…my means to an end, my means to continue my hobby and sometimes the only thing standing between me and my outdoor dreams.

While at work, I would talk to coworkers about their children. These coworkers would lament about problem teens, brag about athletes, laugh about first girlfriends, and share stories of their children’s antics. It was interesting. I got to know people’s children through these discussions and in return, they would listen to my stories of adventure. They would wow over my pictures and make me feel like a real superwoman; of course, I knew a lot of mountaineers who were much stronger than I, but I was still pretty proud of myself. I felt like what I spent my weekends doing was so extraordinary.

The knife-edge on Capital Peak

I was in the midst of planning a trip to climb Kilimanjaro when Darin and I decided to make a change in plans and have a baby instead. Where did that idea come from? That’s one long story and I’d develop carpal tunnel syndrome if I go into those details. Needless to say, having a baby is a long ways from planning a trip to climb Africa’s highest peak…

Looking back, of course, I would not have changed a thing. I used to think that motherhood was so ordinary. I mean, there are a lot of mothers out there. MY mom is a mother. Many of my female coworkers are mothers. More and more of my friends are becoming mothers…

But, only I am Kyra’s mother. Nothing can compare to watching my sweet daughter do all that she does. I can’t believe how I cheer her on whenever she uses her sippy cup by herself. It’s amazing, it’s awe-inspiring. A summit is slso awe-inspiring, but caring for Kyra in all of her sweet baby-hoodness is the most fulfilling job that I have ever had. I love this job of motherhood; it’s truly extraordinarily ordinary.


Monday, July 6, 2009

The Sixth Sense

I have learned that life is best experienced through the use of all five of our senses. Stimulating an infant is done by allowing her to explore using her five senses. Of course, mealtime has frequently been turned into an exploration of not only taste but of texture (who doesn't love the feeling of green beans on their arms, in their hair, and all over the seat that they're sitting in??). I would post a picture of Kyra doing some mealtime sensory exploration, but I figure that there are enough pictures on that very subject. Eh, why not......NUMMY...

So, I began thinking...Hiking around outside is such a calming use of our senses. Not only are the sights and sounds beautiful and charming, but the smells of pine trees are inspiring. The feeling of brisk mountain air being offset just perfectly by the sun is heavenly. The taste of all of your snacks (especially Cheetos and Potato Chips) are amazing when you are camping.

I think there is a sixth sense that doesn't fit anywhere. Camaraderie; the sense of feeling a bond with those you are with. Enjoying the company of family and friends when outside and reflecting on the day or trips past always rounds out an excursion. I hope that Kyra shares in this feeling of camaraderie as a family as she grows. I hope that her favorite memories of camping are those of laughing, playing, and just being with people she loves. (Below was taken during our "annual" trip to Canyonlands)

Mostly, I hope that she develops a passion for all things that money cannot buy: whether it is the view from a summit or the close, personal ties with friends and family.


Thursday, July 2, 2009

Nothing is Simple Anymore

I did it. I stayed home today. I skipped out on work, taking a day of vacation to spend some time with precious Kyra. I didn't really have plans. I developed a couple as the morning wore on. I thought: I am going to take Kyra for a hike. Just me 'n her. We'll hike and explore and go somewhere fun...Roxborough State Park!

I decided this about 5 minutes before I wanted to leave.

Phew. That wasn't easy. I quickly assembled everything Ms. Kyra could possibly need. I applied sunblock to my fair-skinned princess before we got into the car. I grabbed her sun hat, a sippy cup with water, assembled a bottle, grabbed some snacks (for her). For me? Well, since her success may be directly affected by my success (and health), I quickly grabbed a bottle of water, my sunhat, and my hiking boots. I loaded up the car with these items along with the baby backpack, which I adjusted to fit my torso. We were ready.

We got into the car.

We went to the bank (Roxborough State Park has an entry fee and Darin took all of my cash on his way to work this morning).

We began driving.

Kyra instantly became restless. I quickly realized that either we weren't going to make it to Roxborough SP or, if we did, we wouldn't last long -- hardly seems worth the entry fee, doesn't it?

So, I quickly adjusted our plans and hit up the Carson Nature Center about 5 minutes from home. It's a paved path area that is a good starting point to a network of paved trails for walking and bike-riding. Many of these follow the S Platte River. I felt a little sheepish as I put on my hiking boots, but whatever. At least we were getting out.

It quickly dawned on my that nothing is simple anymore. Walks, hikes, excursions require precision planning or the possibility of failure is undeniable. That's okay, but I marveled at that as we cruised along the Platte River and Kyra's mood swung between intrigue at the birds and the water flowing past us to grunting unhappiness.

Nothing is simple anymore. We have always had to prepare for hikes, but there have been numerous that we just woke up some Saturday morning and said, "Hey, let's go hike James Peak" (above).Or, "Hey, I know we've slept in, but let's go hike Colorado's highest peak today -- if we make it, great. If not, at least we got some exercise." For the record, we did make it and it was a great day and I was in great shape (above).
So, Kyra and I made due with a half hour walk along the Platte River after my rushed preparations. Kyra was asleep in the car by the time we got home and happily slept until noon. I think the hiking wears her out more than me, sometimes. But, we had fun and I think Kyra at least enjoyed watching the water rush by us from her vantage point, perched high in the backpack.
I have learned that, while nothing is simple, everything is an adventure.


Saturday, June 27, 2009

Staying Close to Home

It's time to get serious, here. We have got to get back to our hiking selves. The weather is getting nice and we are just itching to get away from home. We're ready to have our coffee by the sound of birds singing and trees rustling. But, since our camping aspirations were snafu'd this weekend, we decided to head to the bird sanctuary for some fresh air, some exercise, and some birds.

This bird sanctuary is very convenient, only about 15 minutes from our home. It's also extremely close to work. So close in fact, that while we were hiking, we would sometimes round a corner and be instantly reminded of Monday...

Yes, that is our work campus. Of course, its location is one of the reasons why I love working there so much. The only ones that may get their car broken into are those people who have left a few too many chocolate chip cookies on the passenger side seat that have been discovered by a black bear.

So, although this isn't exactly wilderness, it is a nice break from home and shopping; the sounds of the birds busily chirping away while hidden in the trees is still quite rejuvenating.
Also, it wouldn't be a walk in a bird sanctuary if we didn't see at least a couple of birds. Since I am addicted to taking pictures of all flowers and wildlife (especially birds), I thought I'd share one or two...
Even though terribly common, I love the red-winged blackbird, its song is so recognizable. We also saw several chickadees (my favorite), and some warblers (I'm not sure what kind), as well as a cormorant.

With all of our recent rains, the flowers were out in force and the bees were happy. This one above is lovin' life in a prickly pear cactus that is flowering with gusto.
Of course, all this excitement made for a pretty sleepy kiddo. All the excitement of the birds (and the mosquitoes) just did her in (if you examine the first picture closely, you can see her little blue hat sticking out from the side of the backpack).

Sometimes, staying close to home isn't so bad, afterall.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Planning for a Rainy Day

Planning. That is something that I love to start doing, but I never finish. I love to jot down all sorts of thoughts regarding what we should have on each trip, but it never seems to turn out that well. So, instead, I have developed a pretty extensive list that will pretty much cover everything. Of course, then I have to follow that list.

Oh, how I try to be disciplined. I try to go through each item and check them off, one by one. But, I don't and I end up scrambling around, seeing things out of the corner of my eye and making a "mental note" (hah!) that I simply must grab that. The worst is when I am running out to the truck, carrying a bunch of miscellaneous items, just as the garage door closes behind me with a very clear finality -- WHOOMP. My packing habits are, to say the least, stressful. And, each time I swear that next time will be better.

But, we've always survived...even if Darin and I disagreed as to how many clothes I would really *need* for a trip:

(And, just for the record, it turned out that NO I didn't need that many clothes)

Now that we have Kyra in tow, things are a little different. I desperately try to keep my head in the game and concentrate on everything she could possibly need/want over the course of three days/two nights. I spend so much time worrying that she has everything she needs, that I forget about us. But, as I've said, we're still getting into this. We're still working on how to babyproof the Lance camper, all the while getting Kyra used to the idea of actually touching the grass (as well as other parts of the natural world).

Can you see her conundrum in this picture? She wanted that lion, but she definitely DID NOT want to risk touching the grass. (Actually, as of today, Kyra loves to not only sit in the grass, but she will sometimes rub her face in it. Woo-hoo! There is hope for this little Spykerbaby!)

Stay tuned for our next camping adventure (as long as SpykerDad is feeling healthy enough).

I'm sure I had a point planned for this post, but ...


Saturday, June 20, 2009

Plans that Change

Our lives were going to change when we had this baby, we told each other. Of course, we were excited for these changes. We were excited to watch a little being grow and learn. We were excited to share with her what we felt were some of our greatest joys in life. We knew that how we enjoyed our hobbies would change, but we were okay with that.

Being natural planners, we decided that after our sweet baby was born, we would take turns continuing our hobbies. We would take turns skiing, hiking, climbing on the weekends; one of us would watch our little one while the other was out, continuing with life as it had always been. We would balance the joys of parenthood while still continuing to enjoy our outdoor excursions, minus the trips that required overnight trips or long backpacks.

Then, something happened...

After weeks of adjusting to (and surviving) the rigors of caring for a newborn, we began to settle into a routine. It was winter by this time. It was snowing at our favorite ski resort, Winter Park. Then, something else happened: I realized that I didn't miss skiing.

It's summertime now. I love to think about the adventures that I've shared with my husband. I am grateful for the experiences and I am so glad that we took the time to pack our weekends and vacations as full as we did.

I don't miss climbing the mountains. I am left with excitement for the future and love of the present. I am savoring the smell of Kyra's hair when I put her to bed, while looking forward to showing her some of the things that I find joyful in life. I'm also enjoying watching my husband turn into a loving father.

Sometimes, plans change when you have children. I don't regret a single minute of it.


Saturday, June 13, 2009

Roughin' it City Style

What a nice weekend. We relaxed and discussed going camping. We decided not to. Instead, we went to the zoo. Ah, the zoo. The place where you can safely view bears and not worry about whether or not you'll be having a visitor that night. Although we were surrounded by children and people...not to mention penned animals...I believe Kyra had a good time. Kyra did not care so much about the elephants and giraffes as she did about the passers-by, the other children, and the activity. Yes, I have a social whose sophisticated pallette palate now includes Cheerios...
It was nice to take a breather. Camping is still something that we are adjusting to with a little one in tow. Of course, we will be back out enjoying the outdoors soon...hiking, enjoying the fresh air, and hoping that a rodent will wander near camp so that Kyra can enjoy its presence.

Until our next adventure...we'll be roughin' it *city* style.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live. - Henry David Thoreau I read Thoreau's Walden as an assignment for a college philosophy class. I believe that I should go back and read it again, in my more "mature" state of mind. I remember it being quite boring and more a method of inducing sleep than getting me to think about nature.

However boring the book may have seemed when I was an 18-yr-old teen, I do believe that it has some real merit. I think that experiencing nature is a wonderful thing. I believe that you can do so from the comfort of your own home (which is why I have two birdfeeders in the backyard that Darin at times despises), but it is so much more exhilerating when you experience it in the natural world.

In nature...or in the natural world, I have discovered that by just getting off the beaten path a few miles can lead to fantastic vistas. Also, by going out during "poor" weather has led to some pretty wonderful adventures. By just allowing yourself a little effort can lead to fantastic rewards.

I hope to pass on to Kyra that the outdoors offer more than just a summit of a fourteener and that sunny, warm days can turn into hellish experiences when thunderstorms break out. I also hope to let her know that experiencing nature is sometimes giving yourself a break and letting it all in. All of the gear and all of our goals are one thing...sometimes it is the (*safe*!) "failures" that offer the best stories...

Here are some pictures from our first "failed" attempt on Yale Peak, six years ago. They are some of my favorite pictures of a missed goal (scroll down for the story...):

It was a cool weekend...Labor Day weekend actually. Darin and I were in our prime: we had climbed at least 10 or 11 14ers that summer and we were feeling very confident (over-confident?). We found a great campsite, studied the map, and fell asleep before getting up well before the sun did to get ready for our hike.

That morning, I got up to "use the facilities" (in the natural way). There was a spider on my leg when I came back into the tent...Darin and I argue about whether or not my life was in danger when the little bugger began crawling up my leg (and closer to my femoral artery). After a horrid scream "DAAARRRRRIINNNNNN....PPLLLLEEEAAAAASSSEEE HELP ME!" By all accounts, the spider was approximately 3 mm in diameter (including legs).

Anyway, we got over to the trailhead and were concerned about the weather. Marine layer? In Colorado? It probably wasn't. We could do it, though!

We started up the trail as the sun began illuminating the clouds on the hill across the valley. Breathtaking. We took a break, since I wanted to take about 4,000 pictures. We decided to look at the map. Upon closer examination (of the map), I noticed that our trailhead was nowhere to be seen. Then I saw the title of the map..."Princeton." Crap. Well, I had remembered that we needed to hike due north and make a left turn at the saddle and go...due west on the trail to the summit.

We found our junction on the saddle and began happily hiking along (after Darin discovered a pair of cheap sunglasses and an umbrella which took me at least 4 years to get him to part with). Suddenly, the fog enveloped us and we got confused. I said to him (being the keeper of the GPS), "which way is west." How confidently (there's that word again) Darin points in the direction he is walking and says "this way!" I follow. We find a trail..."yay!" I look at the trail more closely and I say, "Darin, does this look familiar?" Yes, it was the junction...on the saddle...again.

Darin pulled out the gps, which proudly showed the route we took to get back to where we started. It was comicle...I should have taken a picture of that. We started back on the trail...going west (as per the GPS compass). But, the weather was turning all the more fouler. We found a nice spot to have our lunch which overlooked another valley. We willed the weather to clear up...and we pouted.

But, I never tire of telling people the "Which Way is West?" story...and I got my own compass.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Mother Nature, how do I love thee?

Why do I want to instill a passion for the outdoors in Kyra? Why is it so important that she enjoy Earth's natural beauty? I think there are a number of reasons. First, the natural world offers more adventures than the television or any video game every could. From hiking to mountaineering, ski-touring, and rock-climbing (I may have to draw the line at ice climbing), there are so many opportunities to not only enjoy nature's bountiful pleasures, but also stay in shape.

Of course, what parent does not dream about doing meaningful activities with their children? Activities that the parent enjoys are, of course, meant to be shared. Darin and I find camping and hiking to be not only fun, but rejuvinating. We feel relaxed and at ease while we enjoy the smell of pine trees and the sound of squirrels chirping. Who wouldn't want to share these simple joys with their kiddos. Plus, there aren't any gift shops...

(above)Hiking to a near-private beach on the island of Kaua'i (our Honeymoon!). Would I bring Kyra here? I'm a little nervous about the little section known as the cliff section (and, no, the picture doesn't do it justice -- those waves are a long way down!):

Who wouldn't want to share some of the most beautiful sites with their little ones? I can't wait for Ms. Kyra to get older...of course, I am loving every minute that I get to watch her grow.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Continuing Adventures...

My, how things have changed. In some ways, our vacationing has become much more relaxed. No longer do I need to plan quick meals for the trail as well as something easy to chow down (and swallow) at 3:00 AM for an early start for some peak somewhere. Now, instead of the perfect campsite near a 14er, we search for a comfortable campground (preferably with electrical hookups so we don't have to worry about how much we run the heater at night). This has allowed us to explore parts of Colorado that we otherwise may not have seen.

We had always talked about certain areas that we'd like to check out. Since peaks in the Mummy Range, the Never Summer Range, and the Gore Range do not reach the coveted 14,000', we just never made it to these areas. But, with the arrival of the camper-in-training, we now have the opportunity to explore new areas (while revisiting some of our discovered favorites).

On the other hand, what looks like relaxing camping is a very dynamic situation. Kyra, in her babyhood-ness, is constantly growing and changing. Therefore, her needs are constantly changing. Our discussions have turned from which peaks to climb next to "how are we going to baby-proof the Lance??"

We'll see how things go. The weather doesn't look so great for next weekend, so I think we'll stay local and do some more baby-proofing planning. Speaking of which ... we may need to do to the house soon enough...

Before Baby...returning from Mt. Rainier Summit (which we began at 11:00 PM the night before) in 2005...

After...Which one is really the adventure?

Friday, June 5, 2009

We have a camper!

Our trip to Jack's Gulch went suprisingly well. Although the little one had a screaming fit as we entered Poudre Canyon (and Darin considered briefly the concept of driving us all into the river), Kyra has decidedly begun to enjoy camping. Of course, the trip was made all the more successful by Kyra's Smart Wool Booties. Look at those tootsies! They are so warm!

We met "Uncle" Doug and "Aunt" Chong for our camping adventure. We offered to give them the pleasure of Kyra's company in the case where she decides that camping is not her style at 2:00 in the morning. They graciously declined.

It was unnecessary, it turned out. Not only did Kyra sleep well both nights, but she slept well during naps, as well. Even in circumstances that, perhaps, left much to be desired:
Yes, Kyra seemed to "fit in" with our camping lifestyle. She hiked hard and played hard -- relaxing around the campsite in her campchair, while drinking from her sippy cup.

She and Uncle Doug discussed tech gear and how they would both love to get their hands on a brand-new GPS device, complete with a built-in digital camera and possibly a coffee maker. Doug also discussed with Kyra what her first backpack should be -- in the case she would ever want to graduate from the fancy Kelty Baby Backpack (which, between you and me, she has no plans to as of this writing).

We had a great time. We are already excited to begin plans for our next adventure. Of course, I do need to clarify one thing: although Kyra doesn't mind being outside, if there is not a "protective barrier" (read: picnic blanket) between her and the dirty outdoors -- things are not well in Kyra's eyes. I sat with her on the ground, near a flower during our trip. That did not last long. Well, at least she won't be a dirty child...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Outdoor Gear for Baby?

Ah, June. Well, almost. It is time for camping trip #2. So much to do in order to get ready.

Anyhow, for our second trip, I am planning some better meals. I am still doing our obligatory pizza on the night of our arrival, but I will load up the slow-cooker the night before we leave in order to make pulled-pork sandwiches the second night.

And, in order to get ready, I felt it was only appropriate that Kyra have some good 'ol fashioned outdoor gear. So, I left work a few minutes early and headed up to REI to check out what they had in the way of warm clothes for tots. These clothes would, of course, need to be functional. I mean, Kyra needs warm clothes for chilly mornings/evenings. Being cooped up the camper can be so very difficult. I also believe that Kyra needs to grow up doing things outside. So, she obviously needs "gear" in order to do that.

Ah, gear. How I love trying to keep up with all of the latest-and-greatest in outdoor performance wear. My ultimate clothing wish? A water-resistant down coat. Mmmmm. One with a huge, fluffy hood. Why, you ask? Well, while we were in Peru a few years ago, we had a couple very cold nights (especially while we camped at 17,000').

A friend of mine came out to the dinner tent wearing a fantastic Mammut Down Coat. The huge hood engulfed her face and she seemed to disappear into its massive warmth. Aaaa, I was jealous to say the least. In the picture to the left, you can see Kris in her big down on the left side of the pic, while I sit shivering in my yellow wimpy down coat on the right.

Of course, if we were camping anywhere with little Ms. Kyra in weather that warranted that extreme of a coat, we would definitely need to pack it up and head home.

So, what do I feel my little girl needs to make it outside? What does her "gear-savvy" mom believe that no little munchkin can live without? Well, nothing too fancy. Kyra hasn't learned how to rock climb, so little harnesses are not yet needed. She doesn't walk yet, so I don't even need to find little hiking boots for her tootsies. No, just a rain jacket, a fleece coat, and some fleece pants. I think that should do. I found a set of "expedition weight" fleece underwear (I so wanted to find the same thing for me) and a nice water resistant coat with a fleece liner and a hood. I snuck in some Smart Wool Baby Booties (don't tell Darin).

Of course, my main wish is to get just a little more shut-eye this go-round. That is really all I need. Pictures to follow of how our next adventure goes.