Category Archives: must love dogs

planes, trains, and minivans.

Greetings from the land of chapped cheeks!  (Face cheeks, that is, you dirty minds…) Actually, I can’t really complain about the weather because it’s almost 40 degrees here today which is like, balmy.  We’re thinking of going swimming later.

We’re already in month 2 of our new life in Minnesota and things are slowly settling down after the craze of the move.  It was nuts there for a while, making sure that all of our things and cars and PETS made it here. And then making sure we were situated in temporary housing, getting Casey ready to start his job, locating the nearest Total Wine, etc. etc.  Anyways, I think at this point we’re as “settled” as we can possibly be in our current situation… that is, until we move into an airbnb next month. Sigh.  What a fun adventure!! ::she says with a forced smile::

Stepping back a bit though… I want to make sure some things are documented here, so I’m going to share the story of our move/flight from Portland to Minnesota.   Because it’s ridiculous.

The days leading up to our move were majorly chaotic.   It went something like this….
On Saturday we had a going away party at our house, but it ended up snowing a bunch the night of the party which meant that only about half of our pals actually made it.  It was still super fun (and super sad) but we wished we could have seen all our buddies.  Big thanks to our dear friends who braved the icy roads!!  We love you miss you waaaaa!
On Sunday we packed our suitcases that would basically need to sustain us for the next few months.  Super casual.
On Monday our packers came.  They lovingly wrapped our knickknacks with bubble paper (name that movie!) and had everything we own packed in less than 4 hours.  Amaze.  We moved into a hotel that night.
On Tuesday the movers came and moved all of our crap from our house into the biggest moving truck I’ve ever seen.  Our cars were also picked up by the car movers so we had to pick up a rental car for our last day in Portland.

Cut to late Tuesday night, and it snowed.  Again.  A lot.  Disclaimer: Portland gets a pitiful amount of snow maybe once a year that causes the city to basically shut down because nobody knows how to deal.  There is also no infrastructure in place to take care of all the snow so all the roads become skating rinks.  (High-five for using the word “infrastructure” before noon.  Heyo!)  So basically productive life comes to a stand-still until the snow melts.  It’s super fun if you’re in the market for a cozy couple of days hunkered down at home.  Not so much if you’re attempting to move across the country.

So when we woke up on Wednesday morning, AKA the morning of our flight, and saw the ridiculous amount of snow on the ground we thought for sure our flight would be cancelled.  And/or we thought there’d be no way we’d make it to the airport in our front-wheel drive minivan rental.   Either way, we figured we were screwed because we had SO many plans in motion that all depended on us flying to Minnesota that day.  So to reschedule would have been an absolute nightmare on elm street.  We waited a bit for a flight cancellation alert that never came, so then had to make the ulcer-inducing decision of whether or not to attempt the 30 min drive to the airport to make the flight.  We decided to go for it… so we loaded up our minivan to capacity and hit the road.  Roads that were absolute SHIT.  It was by far the scariest snow/ice drive I’ve ever endured and I grew up in Minnesota!  It was bad.  Casey was a serious driving champ, especially considering that I was white-knuckling the door and shouting things like “gah!” and “eep!” and “I need wine!” every 3 seconds.  Oh, I forgot to mention that we had to make a detour on the way to the airport to pick up our dogs at doggy daycare!  They had been there the last few days while we were staying in a hotel.  (Seriously, my head is spinning remembering all this.)  The dogs were scheduled to be on our same flight and would have to ride in crates in the cargo area of the plane.  So we made the deathly drive to doggy daycare in one piece, got the pups and set off again towards the airport.  20 more minutes of sweat and swearing later, we made it to the airport cargo area where we needed to drop the dogs off.  Casey brought the pups in and then was kindly informed that the dogs could not actually fly that day.  BECAUSE (grumble grumble) there is a rule that in order for animals to fly in the cargo area of the plane, the temperature in your arrival city has to be at least 10 degrees.  And the forecasted temp for Minneapolis at our time of arrival was 9 degrees.  ONE DEGREE difference.  I seriously cried.  After lots of attempts to get Delta to bend the rules for us (they didn’t), we had to bring the most depressed dogs all the way back to doggy daycare.  Via the shitty shitty roads.

By the way, shoutout to our rental minivan because that sucker was bomb.  Everyone on the radio was saying “DO NOT attempt to drive anywhere unless you have snow tires, chains and a 4-wheel drive vehicle!!”  And we’re like, oh we have a front-wheel drive minivan with probably stripped tires and ice skates on, will that work?  Cool, let’s do it!  And she kicked ass.

So by the time we got back to the airport, it was maybe 9am?  And I felt like I was ready for bed.  Alas, we still had to drop off our rental van and get all of our crap into the airport.  I wish so so badly that I would have taken a photo of our luggage cart… it was packed higher than Casey’s head, plus we both had car seats strapped to our backs and carry ons over our shoulders.  And two kids. NBD.  The luggage cart only tipped over and flung all of our stuff into a snow puddle one time!  Success!

Checking in and going through security actually went fairly smoothly, except for the gallon-sized baggy of loose change in one of our carry-ons (seriously the heaviest, stupidest thing to pack in a suitcase but for some reason it didn’t get packed with the rest of our shipped stuff and we couldn’t just leave it behind… it’s probably like a whole $17 dollars worth of change!!! #priorities) that caused some hoopla and a 10-minute bag search.  During that bag search Crosby started what turned out to be an hour-long tantrum.  It.was.rough.  One of the TSA ladies kept looking at me and saying (about Crosby) “Oh she’s so sad!”, “She’s really sad.”, “Why is she so sad?”.  Listen lady, SHE is a HE.  And he’s not sad, he’s TWO.

After we got through security, we decided to sit down for a casual mid-morning cocktail.  But, as I mentioned before, Crosby was still in the throes of a lengthy tantrum.  So our well deserved happy hour turned into sweaty scramble to keep our toddler from losing his shit.  I’ll spare you all the details but I will give you the ending: two half full drinks left behind and a toddler with wet pants.

One fresh pair of pants later, and we were on the plane!  The flight was actually pretty uneventful.  Both kiddos did really well.  And I don’t even feel bad for saying that, because have you read any of this story?  The only low point was flying over Mt Hood, which broke my Portland loving heart into a bajillion little pieces.

When we landed in Minneapolis, Casey went to get our rental vehicle and I was sitting down feeding Willa while we waited… and I looked over juuuuust in time to see Crosby pick up a french fry off the ground and eat it.  He immediately spit it out and said “that’s not good, mama”.  No, no it’s not.

We checked into another hotel for the evening and the next day we made it to corporate housing where we’ve been living the downtown life for the last month.  It’s been great, but I am so so ready to find a place of our own and get all of our stuff out of storage.  I miss my shoes.

Oh, and our dogs!  They got here, eventually.  They ended up having to stay at doggy daycare in Portland for 4 more nights until it warmed up enough for them to fly into Minneapolis.  A good friend of ours picked them up from daycare and brought them to the airport for us and they arrived here safe and sound and smelly.  They are now living the luxurious life with Casey’s parents for a few months until we find a house.

Anyways!  That’s the tale of our entry into the Motherland.

Moral of the story: there is no “good way” to move a husband, wife, toddler, infant, 2 beagles + all their earthly possessions to Minnesota in January.  Ever.  Just wait until spring, for the love of gawd.


thursday things.

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1. A couple of weeks ago my friends and I were talking about celebrity crushes, and I realized that mine are apparently not as normal as others.  My list includes guys like Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis, Kevin James (aka Paul Blart Mall Cop) ((don’t judge me)), Jerry Ferrara, John Krasinski…  I think it’s very safe to say I have a definite “type”, right?  Funny fellas with sweet faces.  I mean listen, don’t get me wrong, I’d definitely Netflix and chill with Channing Tatum if he asked nicely.  (Or not nicely, heyo!)  But in general, I’m much more drawn to dudes who make me laugh and whose faces are adorable.  It’s a wonder I ended up with Casey then… ba-dum-tshh!  I’m JUST KIDDING CASEFACE YOU ARE THE CUTEST FUNNIEST BOY I’VE EVER KNOWN LOVE YOU PICK UP SOME ICE CREAM ON THE WAY HOME PLEASE BYE.

2. Crosby started saying please the other day, which comes out more like “easssse!” and it kind of makes me want to tackle him with hugs.  Manners are so cute, guys.

3. Tip of the day: how to make your store-bought hummus taste better!  You know how store-bought hummus can taste kinda… meh?  Well, the trick is to mix in a couple of tablespoons of greek yogurt, and I promise it’ll taste a bajillion times better.  #hippiestuffs

4. There is literally nothing worse in life than my dog Gus’s breath.  In case you were wondering.

5. Anyone watching Fuller House on Netflix?  We watched a couple of episodes last weekend… and don’t hate me but I kind of liked it?  Even though DJ’s voice drives me apeshit.  She sounds like she’s yelling at a normal speaking volume.  At all times.  And yes, the show is still all kinds of cheese, but I can appreciate that some of the humor is a little less G and a little more PG13.  I mean, Kimmy Gibbler made a joke about dropping acid, so at least there’s that.

6. My whole day basically consists of me counting down the hours until I can take my bra off.

7. Speaking of which, does anyone recommend a good wire-free bra?  Much appreciated.

8. Can you believe the last episode of the Bachelor?!  I really do love sweet vanilla Ben, but homeboy is undoubtedly going to be in a shitload of trouble with whoever he actually asks to marry him on the finale.  Poor girl gets proposed to, and THEN has to find out/watch episodes of her fiance telling another woman that he loves her too?  Ugh.  Ben, you doofus.  Anyways, I’m a big huge fan of Jojo but without question I think he picks Lauren.  The guy turns into that emoji with heart eyes whenever he sees her.  They’re cute.  So #teamjojoforbachelorette !!

9. Realizing I talked about Netflix and TV a lot in today’s post.  Note to self: must get out of the house.  Come ON already, SPRING!

10. WTF is Persicope and should I be using it?  Is it like Snapchat?  Or not at all?  Ugh.  Technology is an annoying beast.  If only it had a sweet face and great sense of humor.


thursday things.

shawnnathompson_thursdaythings1. After I read back my last blog post, I counted the number of different places we’ve stayed this summer…. as in, the number of different places we slept.  And the answer is 12.  12 different beds!!  If I didn’t have a baby, a husband, two dogs, a mid-sized SUV, and dinner in the crockpot, this would probably seem more scandalous.

2. Speaking of dinner.  Since Casey is back at work, I’ve reprised my role as the preparer of 3 meals a day for us.  This is not groundbreaking stuff people, it’s just annoying.  I’m already so over it someone HALP ME.  What are some great/easy recipe ideas?  That the whole family will enjoy?  That pair well with any kind of wine?

3. I can probably count on one hand (ok fine, maybe two) the amount of times I’ve worn makeup this summer.  Casey weirdly prefers that I don’t wear it, and since we’ve been outdoorsing so much it hasn’t seemed worth the effort.  It’s pretty liberating actually, but earlier today before heading out the door on a Target run, I looked in the mirror and saw my reflection with no makeup, a baseball cap, running shorts, and a baby on my hip, and just yelled “holy *fudging shoot* I’m a mom!”  (Ladies!  My PSA of the day is this, I bought this baseball cap in black for $8, and it’s been a permanent fixture on my headed since it arrived.  I larv it.)  Full disclosure: I’m currently wearing mascara and my lips are slightly stained red from eating a few too many Twizzlers.

4. Also on the way to Target, I was thinking about Crosby’s early days/months and how I would stress out about getting in the car to go anywhere with him.  Especially Target because I somehow always got caught in traffic going there, even if it was 11am on a Tuesday.  Crosby absolutely HATED being in the car until he was probably 7 months old.  He’d scream his head off the entire time while I attempted to reach back and soothe him/try not to get into a car accident and/or develop 17 ulcers.  Ughawd.  I have PTSD from those days.

5. Want to hear something random?  Course ya do.  Whenever we’re out shopping and I show Casey something and he wants to know how much it costs, he asks me “dónde?” It’s so ridiculous because we both know it’s incredibly incorrect, but it makes me laugh every time.

6. Up until this Tuesday, Crosby had only been mistaken for a girl one time in his life.  But, today is the third day in a row that someone has called him a “she”.   Listen, I don’t really care if people make that assumption, it doesn’t bother me.  Crosby doesn’t seem to care either.  But it just seems strange that it’s happened three days in a row.  It’s not like I’ve started dressing him in bright pink or putting bows in his (three) hairs.   Today he’s wearing a green shirt and an orange baseball cap, but we still got a “oh she’s cute, how old?”  …maybe it’s the pink tutu he’s also wearing that’s throwing people off…?… I be kidding.  Funny story, my friend Laura got sick of people assuming her baby guy Clark was a girl, so one day when someone asked her what her daughter’s name was, she just said Charlotte.  Ha!  I might do that next time (probably tomorrow) just for funsies.  Stay tuned….

7. We love our house, we really do.  But.  There are only about 15 feet between our house and our neighbors.  And since both of our living spaces are sort of facing each other, we end up hearing a lot of each other’s lives.  Oddly enough, we don’t really talk to them when we see them in person.  Not for lack of trying on our part, they just don’t seem to want to engage with us.  It’s actually pretty awkward, etc.  So anyways, the other day I was feeding Crosby lunch and our dogs started barking out the window at a squirrel.  Our dogs bark a lot, and it’s terribly annoying but we really do everything we can to keep them quiet, short of punching them in the ass.  So they were barking on and off for maybe a minute, and I’m running between them and Crosby trying to quiet them/feed him.  I was getting super frustrated with them already but then I heard the lady neighbor say, “Ugh, would you make them shut up already!”, to which I responded (I never have before) “I’m working on it SO BACK OFF!”  The second half of which was said in a slight demon voice.  Not my finest hour.  Anyways, I was telling Casey the story later and every time I used my crazy demon voice, Crosby would laugh.  Should…. should we be nervous?

8. Does anyone else have the problem where they find tiny holes at the bottom of their shirts?  Like, the size of a sesame seed?  No, you are not being punk’d, I’m seriously asking this question.  Because it happens to all of my shirts!  At first I thought it was moths (yuck) but it’s been happening to me for years and it doesn’t happen to Casey’s clothes.  So unless there is a family of moths following just me around the country… that’s not the answer.  I’ve googled it and it apparently happens to a lot of people, most of whom say it’s from wearing belts.  But I rarely wear belts anymore so I don’t know you tell me.  It’s probably the neighbor’s fault.

9. Do you guys listen to podcasts? I’ve gotten into them over the last year or so, especially while taking my daily walks with Crosby and the assholes dogs, and for the past 2 weeks all I’ve been listening to is Mortified.  If you’re not familiar, it’s basically real-life people reading their diaries, letters, stories, etc. from when they were younger.  For the most part, they are hilarious, embarrassing and right up my alley of awkwardness.  I highly suggest you listen right now, and perhaps start with the episode about Joan and the romantic novel she wrote when she was in the 6th grade.  I never say “lol” but I would for this show.  All the lols.

10. Does anyone know whatever happened to Ja Rule?  Just curious.


summer vacaseytion, over and out.

Hiiiieeeeee! Hi hello! I’m back as promised, with a (seriously long, good luck!) post about what in the heck we’ve been up to lately. And why I hadn’t written anything in so long. And really the only excuse I have is that my fam and I have been taking full-fledged advantage of the long work break that Casey has been on, which has meant a lot of traveling, a lot of exploring, quite a few family naps… and not a lot of blogging. It’s been kind of lovely to disconnect a bit but I’ve really missed coming here to share ridiculous thoughts and stories. I mean, I can only say so many stupid things to Casey before he just up and leaves the room or picks up his phone to check ESPN. But here, I can say as many stupid things as I want and you just accept me! Right? Right. Wait, right?? Right. Right? Riiiiiight…

You’re checking ESPN right now, aren’t you?

So cutting to the chase, our summer has been pretty freaking sweet. Until today that is, because today is Casey’s first day back at work after his 9 week break. I really have no right to complain or feel bad for myself, do I? But has that ever stopped me before? Nope. WAAAAAA! It’s just been so amazing to have this time together as a family. We’ve made so many fun memories this summer and to have Casey home for this long, especially with Crosby at the age he’s at, has been seriously awesome. I’m super thankful, but totally bummed it’s over.

Anyhoo, here’s the part where I detail pretty much every little thing we’ve been up to for the past few weeks. I feel a little indulgent for sharing all these fun adventures… but I also want to make sure we have these memories saved somewhere. So.  Read on if you please!

The Thompson Summer Summary (summery?!) comin atcha… in 3….2…

Week 1. As I mentioned before, we took the first week of #vacaseytion and basically ripped apart, and then put back together, our backyard. We’d been wanting to fix it up back there since we bought the house but never really had the time or the dolla bills to hire someone to do it. (I actually called one landscaping company and when I told the designer our budget she laughed. Hrmmph.) So we took it on ourselves, like a coupla studmuffins. We built a deck, finished a fence, tore down an old crumbling shed (ok, fine, we paid a man with a machine to do that) made a giant sandbox, planted grass, did a bunch of landscaping, and then spent 3 days blowing dirt out of our noses. I wish I were kidding. And anyways, it’s nothing fancy and there are still a few things we’d like to finish up, but it’s such an awesome spot to relax and hang out now.  Here’s a quick before/after glance…ShawnnaThompson_vacaseytion_2

Weeks 2-4. After all that manual labor, we peaced out on a 3-week trip to Minnesota. And as a reminder, we drove there. The verdict? Guys, it was great! The dogs did great, Crosby did great, it was great! I’m not even being sarcastic. For the first time ever. I mean listen, we all got a little stir-crazy from time to time, and the drive to Minnesota was definitely easier than the drive back. But all in all, it was actually pretty fun. And I didn’t even eat any french fries or corn nuts! I KNOW, RIGHT?! (PS would anyone be interested in a blog post about our tips for a long drive with a baby? Yes, no, maybe?)

We pretty much hauled ass on the way there (24 hour drive in 2.5 days) and stayed at little KOA cabins along the way. Which I would highly recommend! Especially if you’re traveling with little ones and/or dogs and just need a place to crash for the night. Each little cabin we stayed in had a double bed and a bunk bed and was just the right size for us. There are some cabins that have bathrooms but ours didn’t, so the downside was using campground-style bathroom/showers. But, as a pretty seasoned car-camper, I can tell you that KOA bathrooms are hands down the cleanest camping bathrooms I’ve ever experienced. Major kudos, KOA. Plus the cabins are way cheaper than hotels. Plus, it’s an experience! Plus, after you put your little one to bed you can sit outside at your picnic table and drink wine from a sippy cup and talk to your next door cabin neighbor about his time in Vietnam. MEMORIES. Are we sick of talking about the dang KOA’s yet?

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Once we got to MN we spent the better part of 2 weeks bebopping from family to family. It was amazing to be able to spend more than just a night or two with each of them, as we usually do on our trips back to the motherland. We actually got some good quality hang time with everyone. Let’s be honest though, everyone was way more excited to hang out with Crosby than with Casey and me, but we’re cool with it. I mean, can you blame them?

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We’re always on a sort of emotional rollercoaster when we leave MN. We love love being with our families, and we honestly love Minnesota (in the fall, spring and summer), but we also love love Portland and our life here. It’s just always such a weird feeling of, which place is home?

Though you know what some people say… home is just where the wine is.

“Some people” may or may not be me.

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On our drive back we stopped in Couer d’Alene, Idaho for a few nights and rented a house near the lake. That lake is killer, man. And our house was right across from it, with like, deer prancing through our yard and such. It was so beautiful, so relaxing, and so friggin’ HOT. Note to self: next time you’re booking an airbnb for your family in the middle of summer, make sure the house has AC. Rookie mistake.

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Week 5. After we got back to Portland from that long-ass trip, we unpacked our bags and just sort of laid facedown on our bed for 5 days. Not to worry, we took occasional breaks to see friends, barbecue, drink some beers, and feed Crosby. In that order, but backwards.  On repeat.

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Week 6. Next on the list of adventuring was taking Crosby on his first camping trip. So we got back in the car, packed with somehow more stuff for a 4-day trip than it had been for a 3-week road trip (??) and headed down the coast to a campground outside of Florence, OR. I gotta hand it to Crosby, he handled tent-life much better than we expected. (Would anyone be interested in our tips for camping with a little one? Yes, no, maybe? Who do I think I am, some kind of expert?) The area was amazeball central…. we explored some sand dunes, hung out around a lake, ate a bunch of campfire pizzas, I tripped over a rock coming back from the bathroom late at a night and got a huge gash in my toe… it was lovely.

IMG_1728 IMG_5115IMG_5080IMG_5089 IMG_5077 IMG_5116 IMG_5140From there we traveled back up the coast to the little town of Netarts where we had rented a house for the weekend with a few friends. 3 couples, 4 dogs, 1 baby, 13 freshly caught crab + approximately 187 bottles of wine. Perfect combination for a lovely weekend. Not lovely? Crosby’s 5:30 am wakeup calls. Especially after staying up way too late playing pass the pigs and zoomie zoomie (what up, MN drinking games!). Luckily our friends were good sports about having a 24 pound alarm clock waking them up on their beach vacation.

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Week 7. And so THEN! We again came home and relaxed and did some Portlandy things for a week… beer festival, splash pads, zoo, beach, beers, wine.

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Week 8. We packed it all up AGAIN for another camping trip. This time we headed to Crater Lake in southern OR. Have you ever been? Good glob it is beautiful! Seriously one of the most breathtaking places I’ve ever been to. We camped near the lake and spent a whole day driving around it and attempting our asses off to get a decent family photo of all 5 of us, in which Crosby is looking and the dogs aren’t attempting to jump over the rim of the lake in order to catch a mother effing chipmunk. Epic fail.

But these views!

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RIGHT?!

We spent 2 nights camping near the lake, which was more than enough because holy COLD at night. The daytime was beautiful but it got down to the upper 30’s both nights we were there. Crosby was such a trooper, especially because he’s been teething like a b, but he woke up at 4:30 (!!!!) both days we were there. Not okay. Understandable, but not okay.

From there we went to Bend, OR for a quick overnight trip, which was really just an excuse to hit up a bunch of their breweries. Priorities, people. After that, we had hopes of staying a few nights at Mt Hood but the campground we wanted was full/Crosby’s toofs hurt/we were all kind of poop-a-looped, so we just headed home a few days early.

Week 9. Hang time, downtime and more chillaxing.  Nothing too exciting except one day we took a little day trip to Hood River to drink wine/taste beer.  (If you’re sensing a theme to this summer, let’s discuss it over a beer….)

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And that, as they say, is that.

I’m super bummed that Casey is back at work, but a teeny tiny part of me is also excited to get back on some semblance of a schedule with Crosby. Like I said, we really took advantage of this summer to relax and be on vacation (I took more naps in the last 2.5 months than I have in the last 5 years.) but now I feel like we’re ready to get into a groove again. I also need to feel productive again, like I accomplished something other than, hey I didn’t nap today! Weird. So here is me, putting in writing that I will (hopefully) be putting more things in writing in the near future. Whether you like it or not :)

Thanks for making it to the end!  And hey, what have you all been up to!?  I’ve missed you!

 


summer plans and other tuesday things.

IMG_1302First of all I wanted to say thank you to everyone who entered the Zutano giveaway!  We have a winner (congrats Hillary B!) but don’t ever forget that you’re ALL winners in my book.

Sadly I have nothing to give away in this blog post.  Except my gift of words.

Wait, is anyone still here?  I promise, it’ll get better-ish!

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So!  Here we are in June!  And it’s already scorching hot in Portland.  Like, you step outside to water the plants and you come back in with full-fledged swack and swoobs type of hot.  (Which is code for sweaty back and sweaty boobs, for the record.)  I took Crosby and the pups for a walk to the park yesterday and we all came back feeling a little bit like steamed broccoli.  In the best possible, start of the summer way.  Steamed broccoli in early June is waaaay better than steamed broccoli in August, if you know what I mean.  And anyways, you know how when you wear shorts and there’s a breeze and you can instantly feel the spots on your legs that you missed shaving?  No?  Just me?

Still wondering where this blog post is headed, aren’t you?  Yah, me too.

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So here’s something exciting!  This is the first week of Casey’s 8 week summer vacation.  Well, technically it’s not summer vacation, it’s his “bonding leave”.  Here’s what: when Crosby was born, Casey’s work didn’t offer paid leave for new parents (Can you believe?! Come on already, America!) so he had to use his vacation time to hang out with his brandnewborn.  Ridiculous.  Anyways, a few months ago he found out that his company changed their policy (hoorah!) and now give both new mothers and fathers 8 weeks of paid bonding leave when they have a baby.  Luckily for us, the new policy is retroactive through last June so Casey still gets the opportunity to take those 8 weeks, as long as it’s before Crosby’s first birthday.  So he scheduled it at this time in order to get most of the summer off.   And since I don’t go to a 9-5 job (I do some freelance writing work from home) this basically means we’ve got an old school summer vacation on our hands!

I totally understand if you want to hate me for a little bit.

But get over it already!  Please?

So anyways.  We’re pumped.  It definitely would have been nice to have this policy in place when Crosby was born so that Casey could have been around more.  But I gotta say that this timing is kind of amazing too.   Because now Casey gets to be home when Crosby is happy and interactive and less like a screaming Gumby.  And we’re less stressed than we were as new parents.  Not to mention it’s given me the time to lose all my baby weight!

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First order of business on our summer bucket list is fixing our backyard.  We’re doing some pretty big renovations ourselves, which basically means we have our own parking space at Home Depot.  Side story: I overheard two guys talking there the other day and one of them pronounced it “dee-pott”.  Basically like it’s spelled.  I fairly intensely stared at him in an attempt to find out if he was joking or not.  My theory is: he was not.

We’ve been working on the yard for a few weeks now and we’re making decent progress, but we’re really trying to get the bulk of it completed before the weekend because on Sunday we leave for a road trip!   Yes!  We’re taking a family road trip to MN!  It’s supposed to take 24 hours to get there!  Did I mention we have a 9-month old?  He’s coming too!  And the dogs!  Yes, dogs!  Plural!  There are two of them!  They’re also coming on the road trip!  Also!  What were we thinking!

Ok, ok.  I really am excited about the road trip but also a little nervous because that’s a lot of time in the car for me Crosby.   Our plan is to haul ass on the way there, then we’ll spend about a week and a half with the fam and catching up with pals, and then we’ll take our time on the way back to Portland.  Maybe.  Who knows.  Did I mention it’s a 24 hour drive?  Feel free to send us your thoughts and prayers.  And corn nuts.

IMG_4866I’m curious, does anyone have any tips or tricks for taking a long drive with a baby?

Does anyone have any tips or tricks for taking a long drive with two beagles?

Does anyone have any Valium?

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Welp.  That’s all I’ve got.  Thanks for hanging out.

Happy Tuesday, ya goofs!


thoughts on fall, maternity leave and baby transportation.

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Can I be a lame for a second and talk about how I can’t believe it’s already October?   I seriously feel like it was just August… and then I blinked and it was fall.  And by “blinked” I mean, I had a baby and the entire month of September became a blur of run-on days and nights that somehow manifested themselves into a full month.  And now here we are in the heart of October and I’m so caught off guard by it.  Normally I’m all about the fall-type activities and Halloween planning and cider and pumpkin-flavored everything!  So far this year, the only pumpkins in our house are the two that are hanging off my chest.  Speaking of which, I need to pump… BRB.

I’m back.  Where was I?  Ah yes, jack o’lantern boobs.  Let’s just agree to move on, shall we?

So what I’m really thinking about now that we’re knee-deep into fall is that the clock is already ticking on my maternity leave.  Sob.  I’m really so incredibly lucky to have a full four months at home with Crosby before I go back to work and I so very much want to make the most of it.  And that’s what’s been on my mind lately, making sure that I’m taking advantage of these precious few months that are already flying by.

That said, I’m still figuring it all out.  And trying to establish a “routine”.  Whatever that means.  It’s a work in progress… and lately I’ve realized that I’ve been putting a lot of pressure on myself when I’m home alone with Crosby during the week.  Like I need to be completing a certain amount of tasks each day in order to be considered productive.  I think because I’m not technically “working”, I feel like I need to manage more of our home life.  I have this endless to-do list in my head of things I want to get done each day, beyond just taking care of Crosby.  Like I should be able to take care of the baby and get all the housework done and take care of the dogs and run errands and BLOG! and and and.  Some days it all works out… other days I’m lucky if I’m out of my pj’s by 8pm.  And when those “other” days happen, I feel disappointed in myself for not having accomplished more.  It’s silly really.  Because the thing of it is, and what I’m trying to remind myself, is that taking care of Crosby IS my job right now.  And it’s a very full-time job.  The most important job of my life so far.  Definitely more important than multitasking everything, to the point where I might miss out on little moments with my kid.  I mean, it’s great if I can have dinner on the table by the time Casey gets home from work… but if I can’t, it’s so not the end of the world.  Right?  (Especially given my culinary prowess these days.  Last week I put coconut milk, diced tomatoes and rice in the crockpot and called it soup.  Yeesh.)

Right.  So.  Being in the moment.  Letting go of lists.  Loving on my baby.  That’s my fall horoscope.

Regardless of how chaotic our day is or isn’t, I do try to take Crosby and the dogs for a walk every day.  It’s taken some getting used to – managing all those boys.  They’re a lot to wrangle.  Especially when my small but mighty dogs become distracted by… anything.  I’m constantly scanning the ground for squirrels or rogue hamburger buns, either of which could be the trigger that causes the pups to bolt and pull my arm out of its socket.  It’s physical AND mental exercise, you see?  And of course I want to make sure Crosby is as safe as possible, so we’ve been testing out all our different baby transportation options to find the one that works the best for us.  What do I mean by baby transportation, you ask?  Well, we have our stroller…. with all the fixings.  We also have an Ergo.  And then we have a Boba wrap.  We also have a Solly wrap on loan from a friend.  And then of course I have just like, my bare arms.  But!  Who knew there were so many ways to get a baby from point A to point B?  The jury is still out on which one is our favorite but I do feel a bit like a douche for having so many.  I remember before Crosby was born, when we said we wouldn’t be the type of people who hoarded baby junk.  We were totally like, let’s just get this ONE kind of thing and it’ll work perfectly and our baby will love it!  ……. HA.  And now we’re totally like give me ALL of the things, in order to find the one that will keep him calm happy and/or quiet.  Right?

So that’s all we have for today.  And look!  I can cross off blogging from list for today!  Aren’t you so very glad? ;)

And now, a few pictures from a mini photo shoot on our couch.  Here we go!

shawnnathompson_maternityleave_2Every once in a while homeboy will whip out the cross-eyes.  And then we call him Crossby.  Because we’re hilarious, fantastic parents.

shawnnathompson_maternityleave_1Crossby does not appreciate the joke.

shawnnathompson_maternityleave_6Not at all.

shawnnathompson_maternityleave_5No I mean, he really hates it.  And then we start to feel bad…

shawnnathompson_maternityleave_8So then I tell him we’ll buy him a pony to make up for it.

shawnnathompson_maternityleave_3And then we’re cool again. Let’s be honest. He OWNS us.


tuesday stuff.

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  • Not much new to report today other than it’s Tuesday and I’m having a pretty bad hair day.  Whoever said pregnancy makes your hair healthy and shiny can eat my shorts.  The only thing happening north of my neck is a serious case of bedhead, which somehow manifests even when I haven’t been sleeping?  Cool stuff, pregnancy.
  • Last weekend, when everyone else was hunting Easter eggs and stuffing their faces with chocolate bunnies, Casey and I were spring cleaning our casa.  We’ve never really done the whole spring cleaning thing before… but we sorta figured we should do it since we own a house now and I really needed a reason to search for that piece of garlic that’s been hiding under the oven for the last 4 months.  Despite it’s spritely name, spring cleaning sucks.  It took for.ev.er and I was SO sore on Sunday that all I could really do was lay in bed and watch 6 episodes of Parenthood on Amazon Prime.  (I think we’ve just found the source of my perma-bedhead…)
  • Before all the TV watching on Sunday, we did take the dogs to the dog park.  All was going swell until Eddie got hisself peed on.  I’m not sure how it happened, all I know is he came running up to me and I bent down to pet his head and then promptly stood back up with a handful of dog stranger’s pee on my hand. Which was fun.  Eddie didn’t mind, that is until we got home and gave him the bath of a friggin lifetime.  It’s safe to say he was cleansed of all of his sins this Easter.  Amen.
  • I’ve spent the last 15 minutes trying to get onto the Sun Chips website.  Yes, Sun Chips as in, Sun Chips.  Because why?  Because I want to know why, for the love of William H Macy, can’t I find green Sun Chips anywhere?  I wouldn’t say that green Sun Chips are so much a pregnancy craving as they are a necessary part of life.  I’ve seriously looked for them at every major grocery store in a 5 miles radius and sure you can find Harvest Cheddar, which will suffice in a bind, and the red ones… which I’m not even sure what flavor they are… Original? Who cares about them.  I need the green ones!  And they are seriously nowhere to be found.  Last week out of pure luck I found an individual size bag of green ones at dear old Mr. French’s coffee shop at the bottom of my office building.  And that was a great day.  I think I heard the heavens open up when I spotted that little green bag at the back of that chip bin.  I almost hugged Mr. French but did not, for fear that I might crush some of my precious chips in the process.  Anyways, I’ve been trying to get onto the Sun Chips website so I can send an email to whoever is in charge of stocking Portland with green Sun Chips because UR DOIN IT WRONG.  However, their website isn’t loading and how many minutes is too many minutes to spend clicking the reload button on the Sun Chips website?  Maybe this is a sign that this is a fruitless task.  Hmmm… fruit sounds good right about now…. (Non-preggers people: please pour yourself a glass of wine, go back and reread that paragraph, and have a drink every time you read the words “Sun Chips”.  Thank you, you’re welcome.)
  • Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably know that Mila Kunis is preggers with Ashton Kutcher’s bebe.  The thing is, I think she and I are right around the same timing which makes me kind of proud?  Like we’re going through this together.  Like we can lean on each other.  I plan to send her an invitation to brunch to discuss, just as soon as I finish up my heated email to a one Mr. Chip, Sun. 
  • I feel like I need to give that husband of mine a shoutout.  Especially because he’s been such a gem during this lovely pregnancy hormone mood swing phase that I like to call “bitchiness”.  Thank gawd it’s not a constant thing (or is it Casey? IS IT!?!)…  No really, the bitchiness tends to sneak up on me quite quickly and unexpectedly… and it usually manifests in me either biting Casey’s head off, or responding to him by making fart-noises with my mouth.  It’s a fun phase that I’m most definitely documenting in my baby book for our sweet little one to read about many years down the road.  (“I felt you move today Baby!  I also threw a spatula at your father when he told me he couldn’t find green Sun Chips at the grocery store.”)

hikes and beds and the dogs who own us.

IMG_1691.jpgWe took advantage of the kick-ass weather this weekend and made the trek out to Saddle Mountain to go on one of our favorite hikes.  We’ve done this hike once before (in the dead of winter, we’re such dummies) but this time was a bajillion times better.  It was nice and sunny, there wasn’t any hail, we had pants on, etc.  It was great.  Except that I must be pregnant or something because I kept getting super winded after about 10 steps.  To give myself some credit, this hike is tough.  It’s a pretty steep trek to the top, so I know it’s difficult for just about anyone.  But I still felt like one of those squishy kids from the movie Heavyweights as I wheezed my way up that damn mountain.

Also worth noting on this hike: I had my very first stranger ask me if I was pregnant.  She was walking past us and said something like, “Good for you for doing this hike when you’re pregnant!”.  I didn’t say anything for a second because I was totally caught off guard which led her to then say “OMG you are pregnant, aren’t you?”.  To be honest, I really didn’t mind that she asked me, but I definitely think it’s PRETTY ballsy when strangers comment on pregnancies.  There are so many unknown factors to consider before you ask someone if they’re expecting.  I myself tend to stay away from commenting on anyone else’s midsection unless I’m certain that they actually are indeed cooking up some cells in their uterus.  Some telltale signs that a woman is pregnant:  she’s wearing a shirt that says “baby on board”, she’s got the maternal hand-on-belly action or subsequent hand-on-lower-back waddle, she TELLS YOU that she’s pregnant, or you know, if she’s crowning.   If it’s not that blatantly obvious, then you should probably just zip it.  Anyways, anyways.  The woman’s comment was sort of a defining moment in my pregnancy.  Strangers can actually tell that I’m pregnant?  Does that mean I can start using the “Expectant Mothers” parking spaces at Home Depot?

Some fotos of the day…

 

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In other weekend news, we attempted to kick the dogs out of our bed for the very first time on Sunday.  They’ve always slept with us but we’ve been talking about transitioning them to a dog bed on the floor for a while now.  Purely because we’re having a kid that will probably be passing out in our bed from time to time, and we think 3 humans + 2 dogs in one bed sounds excessive?  So anyways, this weekend we tried the dog bed.  We tucked both pups in on the floor and then we crawled into our human bed and in less than 2 seconds, Eddie had jumped up to join us.  (Gus is a little too full-figured to jump up on the bed on his own so he just sat at the foot of the bed giving us puppy dog eyes.)  We brought them both back to their dog bed, and 2 seconds later, Eddie had jumped back up on our bed.  This happened about 10 more times over the course of 5 minutes and each time we’d bring them back to bed and they’d sit there and give us these looks like they were auditioning for a Sarah McLachlan animal cruelty commercial.  I’m fairly certain “Arms of an Angel” was playing somewhere in the distance… And so we caved.  We’re such weenies.  Ugh.  We failed, they won.  They continue to own 95% of our bed.  The kid won’t mind sharing, right?  I heard infants are pretty small anyways.

I mean… just look at these poor tortured souls.  They clearly need a king-sized pillow-top mattress in order to survive.

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dog park diaries: eddie’s big adventure.

IMG_1239A couple of weeks ago, on a particularly gloomy, muddy day, we took the pups to Disneyland for dogs.  I’ve mentioned this place before… it’s a huge (a thousand acres to be exact) open dog park where you can let your dogs off leash and take these wonderful little hikes through the woods and down to the Columbia River.  It’s not technically fenced in but it’s so freaking big that you usually don’t have to worry about your dog getting to close to the “edge” or running off.  It’s beautiful and nature-y and we kinda love it out there.

It was our first time bringing Mr. Ed there and we were super pumped to let him and Gus run around and get so exhausted that all they’d want to do is lay around for the rest of the day.  We always give ourselves a firm pat on the back when we do some kind of family activity that leaves our dogs so exhausted that they can’t move.  It’s like we just parented the crap out of them.

Anyways, it was Ed’s first time there, like I said.  And we were a little nervous about letting him off his leash since he was a free-range, outside dog in his past life before we adopted him, but we figured he wouldn’t stray too far from us since the kid is mildly-severely obsessed with us.  Well.  That my friends, was not the case.  As soon as we unhooked his leash, he bolted.  Hard.  At first we just looked at each other and nervous giggled, like ok he’s just going to do a quick old-school, gym class crusher and turn around and come back to us.  But no.  He kept going.  We chased him down the path and into this big clearing but he was gone.  I cried, Casey got real serious, and this whole time Gus just continued to sprint around us like the cracked out pig that he is.  I immediately imagined that Eddie’d resorted to his old ways and just ran off, fjorded the river (the Oregon Trail is no joke) and was halfway to Washington already.

We decided to split up to look for him, which was a good idea in theory except Gus couldn’t decide who he wanted to go with… which resulted in him running back and forth between us to the point where we thought HE was lost too.  A good 30 minutes later, I got a call from a lovely couple who had found Eddie.  Apparently after he sprinted full blast away from us, he eventually came back to where he left us and sheepishly sauntered up to this couple and their dog.  After they found my number on his dog tag and called me, they were kind enough to hang out with him while I ran the full mile back to where they were.  And they hardly seemed bothered at all as I thanked them profusely while trying to mop up the sweat, tears and snot that had accumulated all over my face.

And so.  Thus concludes this edition of the dog park diaries.

Untitled3 Untitled3 Untitled IMG_0001IMG_0002[ i spy: gus ]IMG_1266

Also, the Oregon Trail makes t-shirts.


resolving 2013.

 

We’ve covered Christmas, so let’s talk New Year’s!

First of all….yay!  You lasted another year and didn’t perish.  Good for you!

Did you make your resolutions for 2014?  I sure didn’t.   Eff that.  Last year, I attempted to take the pressure off and instead of making resolutions, I made a bucket list of sorts.  Just little a few things I wanted to do throughout 2013.   None of it was super unrealistic, but I still kinda failed at it.  Let’s take a look at how I fared, shall we?

  • Volunteer. (Sadly, no. But one time I offered to get Casey a glass of water.)
  • Take a cooking class. (Nope. Unless watching the Biggest Loser counts?)
  • Take a trip with my husband.  (Yes!  We went to Montana AND Arizona!  And Minnesota a couple times.  #dreambig)
  • Blog more. (Doubt it.  Sorry friends.  But I have been contributing to the apartments.com blog once a week, so maybe?)
  • See my best friends. (Yes! We finally made our first annual girls trip happen last March in Austin, Tejas.  And stay tuned because the 2nd annual trip is happenin’ in one month in LA!  We’re really doin’ it Har!)
  • Run another 1/2 marathon. (Oh, whoops I couldn’t quite read that one, there was too much french fry grease on my screen)
  • Keep a journal. (Does a mediocre blog count?)
  • See more live music. (We’ve actually been to a few live shows… but still not as many as I’d hoped.  We did, however, get season tickets to Broadway, which technically is live music?  For nerds.)
  • Swim in the ocean. (Does swimming in a pool count?  If so, I still failed).
  • Teach my dog to fetch. (Gus & Eddie can totally fetch my underwear out of the hamper. Win.)
  • Get a massage. (Oh, totally.  I got the best one ever from one of those massaging pedicure chairs at the nail salon last summer.)
  • Take more pictures. (Yes, definitely.  Especially since we became professional fotografers.)
  • Go on a road trip. (We drove to the coast a whole bunch of times, so I’m saying yes.)
  • Buy a house. (Nailed it!)

So… ya see.  I did ok.  But still not great.  Therefore I’m foregoing any kind of resolution so I don’t disappoint myself come 2015 (holy what!? that is crazy to think about).

This year I just want to focus on having a whole bunch of fun and adventures with my little family.

Gus and Eddie are totes on board.  Don’t they look like the ultimate fun-havers?…

fam fam

From my family to yours,

Peace, love and gym memberships.