Hi.  Hello.  Am I at this point again? Apologizing for not keeping you amused?  Dang it!

So, crawling back out from the rock that was a combo of chemistry, ATNC (advanced trauma nursing course) and the ever present “yob” here’s a lot of updating in no particular order.

ONE: I cut my hair

For someone who has to make a lot of quick decisions at work it takes me forever to make decisions on the home front.

We’ve lived northbound for >2 years and in all that time I’ve been talking a big talk about chopping off my golden locks.  They’ve remained firmly rooted mainly because I had not yet found someone I’d trust with the process.  I sincerely prefer my hair long but have felt that I really should donate some of that hair.  I love my hair long.  But it was beginning to feel a twinch-bit selfish to not share such a renewable resource.

Approximately 9 1/2 inches later we are left with:

TWO: VISTORS!!!

We’ve had quite the plethora of visitors.  Friends from down south have been marching through and I don’t know what we did to be honored with such great people who are willing to call us friends but man am I glad we did it.  It’s a hike to get out here, we understand and appreciate that fact.  So after my folks, and the lovely Karen, we had the dynamic duo of jb and JB and then the bionic Paul and Kate.

My camera went on classic “camnesia” with the jb/JB visit but we ate lots of good food and found great new music.  Ryan was cruisin’ for something to do on a Sunday night and went to the AV club site of our hometown to find a band playing that none of us knew.  We checked out some of their online stuff and jb declared, “We shall be going.”  Granted, it ended up being on the not as nice side of town and the crowd was only 20 strong but Elephant Revival was AMAZING!  If you can see them live, GO DO IT!  You won’t regret it.  They are one of those bands that perform live so amazingly.

I guess I do have one photo from jb/JB visit sent to me from the phone of said jb^2, so please excuse the pixelated quality and as it was late at night, the moody lighting.

Nice kitty, nice kitty.  We be sultry sirens, don’tcha think?

Paul, Kate, Ryan and I hiked in 30-50mph winds to catch a ball game.

And the home team won!  Obviously Paul and Kate are our good luck charms so really guys, y’gotta come back.  My logic is irrefutable (especially if I put my fingers in my ears and shout, “nananannana”, to any counter argument).

They got something out of it too.  Kate received not-so-high-quality but definitely great scenery instruction in the fine madness that is knitting.  Paul, if you find that all your book shelf space is overtaken with a yarn stash…it is not my fault.

And you may eventually find yourself saying these words, “Do we really need ANOTHER washrag?” To which the honest answer is, “Yes, you can never have enough washrags.”  But Ryan’s answer may be, “No for the love of all things sane in the universe, stop the madness.  We just don’t have that many dishes that need washing!”

THREE: Biking to the ends of the Earth

We’ve kicked our bikes around town.  We had some really great weather a few weeks back and explored until the land ran into the lake.

I think that maybe if we had fatter tires would could have gone all the way to the opening in the bay. But as it was we kept our feet and wheels on dry land.

This summer is proving to be a wet one. We haven’t gotten out to the trails much but have been trying to keep to the road. When we do get to the trails I’m afraid of what swarms of mosquitos may be awaiting us.  We’ll be sure to have firm tires this time around….or full body mosquito netting.

FOUR: Babypalooza + a graduation

We did a quick visit through the South.  Good friends in KY and OH had new babies within 3 weeks of each other.  Originally we had planned on a great trip to Devil’s Tower/Badlands/Mt. Rushmore, but there are somethings you just can’t miss out on.  Hopefully those amazing landscapes of wilderness exploration will still be there when we next can enjoy them.

I wish I had pictures of the little babies, but as it turns out, my hands stayed pretty full with said babies and few pictures were taken.  It is amazing the difference a bit of time makes and doesn’t make.  Kona who was three days old was bigger than Sofia who was three weeks old and don’t even let me get started on Rhetter-man who is a whopping seven months old but about as big as three year old brother.

Annie, the smart woman that she is, put Ryan straight to work to keep the men out of our hair so we could gab and gossip and what not.  Seeing that Annie and Craig have been storing a lot of our stuff in their basement for nearly three years…I think we can be put to good use.  We…er, Ryan, er….we, yes I think I did something worthwhile there too.  Just give me a moment to think on it.

Ryan can now add taking down and putting up a new garage door to his handyman resume.  The instructions for installation were priceless.  Included in their lines of wisdom were something to the effect of “Once you start putting the garage door together, if the garage door is the only exit, make sure you have everything you are going to need for the 8 hours it takes to install.”

The only kiddo picture I did get was of the older ones playing in the front yard.  You can see the neighbor girl running to join in from across the street.  There is such a care-free joy in child’s play.  Try to remember that enthusiasm and “in the moment” joy next time you are up to some shenanigans.

That joy in the moment was certainly shared when we surprised Karen and Kate at their med school graduation.  They have since moved west to start their first year of residency.  To say there were tears of shock, sadness and joy all rolled into one evening would be an understatement.  Kate’s parents kindly invited us party crashers to a very nice dinner at a very nice French restaurant in Dayton, OH.  Kate’s stepdad enjoys a good bottle of wine.  Meaning that I got to enjoy several different good bottles of wine.  Over top of all that though was the joy of sharing such a moment culminating the accomplishment that is the torture of med school with two people we love but never get to see often enough.  My heart is in my throat for the different role they will be taking on this year, their new responsibilities and the weight those new responsibilities can put on the mind and soul.  I know that if I were a patient out there, I would not hesitate to put my care in their hands knowing that they would utilize all their own resources to see that the best possible outcomes were achieved.  Good luck you two.  I’m glad you have each other to rely upon through this year.  We are just a phone call or keyboard clack away, if you need us.

FIVE: An experiment in greenery

We are lucky to have a very nice farmer’s market every Saturday a five minute walk down the road.  One sunny Saturday morning we went for a stroll and came home with four pepper plants.  Sadly we didn’t think to mark them immediately upon return to our house so they are currently unidentifiable without some sleuthing of the leaf morphology kind.

As they came home in little grown-from-seed containers and I had to go to work, Ryan was left with task of going to the nearest supply store for pots and soil.  Unsure of what size pot to get he asked the friendly 80-year-old lady for some advice.  She was quite shocked to hear that we were trying to grow fruiting plants INDOORS!  They require quite a lot of SUNLIGHT! It isn’t like trying to grow HERBS, don’t we know.?! (Our basil is doing quite well, thank you very much, and the pesto from it has been quite tasty.)

So, unable to persuade Ryan to break the lock to the roof and grow our plants up there, she sighed and said, “Well, we’ll just call this an experiment.”

This is a close up of the progress for the plant second from the left:

And here is one from the plant on the right:

Maybe we’ll get flowers and if we are lucky enough to get flowers maybe we’ll be lucky enough to get fruit.

They are self pollinating but their proximity might make them cross pollinate.  It’ll be interesting to see how a habanero, jalepeno, serrano and sweet red, come out and play nice.

PHEW.  That’s all for now.  Are you still reading?  If so, kudos to you!  Now that summer is no longer hiding behind the corner we can eagerly say, enjoy summer!

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