blk: (Default)
I just had two weeks (well, 13 days) away, in two vacations back to back. Now I'm back, and I'm really glad to be back.

In two weeks my garden continued to grow. I pleaded with some friends to come by and steal my kale and tomatoes and I think they did so nothing went to waste. Apples are covering my front yard, though, so I really have to do something about that now.

In two weeks I only occasionally skinned social media, and then only the parts that sounded personal or happy. It was really nice. I briefly checked email headlines to make sure there was nothing that needed immediate attention.

In two weeks, CMU has changed. Students are annoyingly everywhere, the Wean-Porter plaza is passable again, and the UC locker rooms are open (but now want a card swipe for just entering, phooey).

In two weeks I didn't miss work at all. Although I am very happy to have a job where things don't pile up while I'm gone, and also one where deadlines are pretty mushy so it didn't matter that I didn't finish things up before I left. I was back today and I even got a little bit accomplished.

I did actually kind of miss my kids, probably because they aren't 4 year olds. Although I admit I'd been looking forward to coming home to an empty, quiet house, it was actually nice to come home to boys who had conversations and ate dinner with me. And thanks to them, my kitty didn't seem to have suffered too much from loneliness.

I missed my bed. In 12 nights away, 7 of those were spent on an air mattress in a tent. While we have a very nice air mattress, I'm so happy to be back in my own bed in my own bedroom.

I missed Pittsburgh weather, although I hear we missed a pretty good heat wave and maybe I wouldn't have missed that. The NY weather was beautiful but the Seattle weather was way too cold for me. I had on several layers pretty much my entire time there.

Three weekends ago I went to a bunch of local events and saw a nice subset of Pittsburgh friends. Two weekends ago I saw a nice subset of Bostonish friends. Last (long) weekend I saw a nice subset of Seattle friends. This coming weekend.... I think I'm ready to stay home and be with myself and catch up on projects.
blk: (tree)
While everybody's attention is focused on this gigantic troublemaker of a storm on this coast, I am going to revisit a small camping vacation [ profile] xuth and I took a couple weeks ago, Oct 13-14.

We had one of those rare weekends without the kids, and I wanted to go somewhere relaxing that didn't involve a whole lot of work (or money). After doing some looking to see what was available at the last minute (not much), I found a cabin available in Kooser State Park, about an hour east of Pittsburgh. The park itself was pretty tiny, but it is practically right next door to several other state parks, as well as Roaring Run Natural Area (pdf) and a stretch of the 70 mile Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail.

hiking details )

Overall it was a good weekend out, and perked up more of my interest in hunting for this year's winter vacation spot. In previous years we've gone to Germany Valley, WV and Hocking Hills, OH. Our ideal is a comfortable, relatively inexpensive place in the middle of nowhere, in easy driving distance from Pittsburgh, with indoor plumbing and heating and at least minimal food prep abilities, with nearby trails for hiking, and no kids around.

Another thing we've been hoping for is company. Would you be interested in spending a few days with us sometime between Dec 22-31, with snow hiking during the day, and quiet board games and tea in the evenings (or maybe a book and a wood stove)? We haven't decided on location or time yet, and can be flexible. The vast majority of our friends already have holiday plans with family or traveling, but in case you don't and are interested in joining, let us know!
blk: (bike)
In a rare moment of a free summer weekend - no kids in town, and no other big plans - [ profile] xuth and I decided to head down to Ohiopyle, PA for a couple days. Not to play in their rapids this time but to ride on their bike trail. So we grabbed the last available tent site in the local state park campground, packed up the (new and improved and larger) car with bikes and such, and headed out after work on Friday.

trails and pics )
blk: (flower)
Life is passing in a woosh lately. I feel like I'm being left behind, like I'm not doing anything. I keep intending to write things down, and that keeps not happening, jumbling up my brain instead and contributing to my feelings of unproductivity. Fortunately, I do write things down on Google.

So mostly according to my calendar, here is what I've been up to )

There have also been a few annoying things )

OK, with all that written down, I don't feel quite as much like I've not been doing anything. Next month's plans include a lot of travel and camping. Schedules are not nearly as settled as I want them to be. Somewhere in there is a birthday, which I don't think I have time for. More later.
blk: (stilts)
We had such a good time at Oxidation Arts last weekend that we decided at the last minute to go to WildFire this weekend. I actually didn't do any spinning or fireplay, but there was plenty enough else going on to keep me busy.

dizzy with life )

Today we drive home, through annoyingly wetter but nicely cooler weather, but making good time so far. I'm pretty sure I'd do this again, although necessarily leaving out most if not all of the negative factors. I think this is a workable goal, so now I just need a few years to work on my juggling...
blk: (tree)
I had this conversation all planned out in my head. Did you do all your leg exercises? the physical therapist would ask me on Monday. No, I would reply. I couldn't, because I was too worn out from the rest of the circus arts I was doing over the weekend. Of course, she never fed me the straight line, so my attempts at showing off kinda fell flat. But my knee was great.

What really happened is that [ profile] nolemming and [ profile] aryel_moffet convinced [ profile] xuth and me to go down to Oxidation Arts, a firearts weekend workshop camping event in its inception year, held at Four Quarters, a hippie pagan retreat/campground that doesn't want to be called that, and organized by The Ohio Burn Unit, a group of fire performance artists based out of Ohio.

Read more... )
blk: (tree)
Home from Firefly!

Trying to sum up things coherently would take too much brainpower, and my head has gone into powersave mode in the heat today, so instead, here is a bullet point list of interesting things from this past weekend.

everything is never as it seems )

In the past three weeks, [ profile] xuth and I have driven over 4200 miles, with over 75 hours in the car together (some of that with kids), with neither of us wanting to kill the other. I call that pretty successful. We both agreed that we work better with me navigating and him driving, as opposed to the reverse. No comment on what that may or may not say about his navigating or my driving. :)

Now we have at least a couple weeks at home before doing any more traveling, although I think there are at least a couple more trips on the horizon, as well as a few houseguests we're expecting in the next few months. Meanwhile, there's a whole lotta stuff to clean up around here, and a whole lotta heat making me want to sit around and not do it. I think this week calls for homemade smoothies and movies in my (cooler!) basement. That's incentive.
blk: (braids)
After the trip to MN last week, we drove back to Pittsburgh, unpacked the car, collected a few kids, did laundry, borrowed and packed the car, and left for camping in the mountains of NY.

rawr by qwrrty

Baitcon is as Baitcon is, which is full of ice cream and wonderful people and all sorts of fun. There was a plethora of bouncy stilting this year, in part thanks to the carload of stilts [ profile] xuth and I brought up with us. I tried my foot on a slackline, which was fun but very difficult. I finally got enough Dominion so that I think I can say I've learned how to play. I braided hair, including mine up with fun colors so that I don't have to think about it for the next while. I joined the Utilikilt contingent for giggles. I took naps and a few pictures and played with liquid nitrogen and liquid oxygen. I got insect bites, a lot more than previous years, including one from a tick. I found him early, though, so I do hope this one heals faster than the other one (3.5 years and waiting!).

And then after a long and full weekend, we drove back home to unpack and return the car, get rid of the kids, do laundry, pack the car, and leave for camping in the mountains of VT. Man, we're crazy.

The night we got back, we noticed teh internets were out. Being too exhausted to think about it, I put off debugging until morning, when, after a few power cycles, I checked the landline, and noted the dial tone was out. Yep, that'd do it. A call to Verizon fixed it with an "oops" on their end, but the day of waiting around with No! Internet! prompted me to go ahead and hack my phone a bit more to enable tethering. Hurray! I now have internets everywhere! Well, almost everywhere, but everywhere enough that I can post this entry while riding in a car on the freeway through NY. Muahaha.

To make things better, while in the middle of dropping off kids at camp the first day back, I popped my beloved Saturn into reverse to turn around and.... something popped a lot harder than it should have and suddenly I couldn't shift to any gear other than reverse. I coasted awkwardly into a sort-of parking spot to call for help and await a tow truck, then enjoyed a very nice day for a couple mile walk home. The clutch cable broke, and as soon as they can find a Saturn-parts supplier, it'll get fixed for somewhat annoying but not horribly huge sums of cash. Good thing I don't need my car for the next week or so.

In the rest of the time we had to get ready for the next camping trip, I baked and cleaned while Xuth packed and prepped. Sadly, I barely glanced at my garden, which is slowly being overgrown by ignored tomato plants, or my blueberry bushes, which are merrily ripening away. It's lovely to own a place where I can enjoy locally grown food, except I'm feeling guilty about not taking proper care of things.

Meanwhile, this weekend we are off to Firefly to do some hard camping. I'm a little trepidatious about it, as it'll be my first time at any Burner-type event (and Xuth's mostly first time really doing this -with- someone), and I don't expect to know many people there. [ profile] frobzwiththingz promised me that I wouldn't die, so here's hoping.


blk: (Default)

July 2017

2345 678


RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated 19 Sep 2017 20:45