Wednesday, September 29, 2010

San Francisco

Inka, Kim and Kim's aunt (who officiated the wedding) during the ceremony
Veda looked lovely in her sparkly red dress. Too bad she had to be physically removed by Scott and missed the entire ceremony due to her siren-like shrieking.
Silvio was the ringbearer
The wedding cake -- it was quite delicious!
The newlyweds roasting in the sun after the ceremony
Birch and Kim's son Silvio running with the wild pack of kids that took over China Camp after the ceremony.

Birch being Birch in front of the Chinatown Gate in San Francisco

Chilling inside an ancient redwood tree in Muir Woods

My sistah Kim took us to the airport for the trip home

The new tattoo Kim gave me the night before we left

We just returned from our first actual vacation together as a family! We went to San Francisco for my friend Kim's wedding. I'm lucky to have close friends that live in excellent vacation spots!

Birch and I had been out there before to visit Kim and her son Silvio, but Scott had never been to California at all, and it was our first long airplane trip together with Veda (although I have quite a bit of hard-won experience in that area in a solo capacity...I travel a lot with one or both kids to visit grandparents).

The 6-7 hours of flying time and 2-3 hours of layovers each way was...errr...challenging, to say the least. Anyone with a 2-year-old knows that long trips with time changes, routine changes and lots of sitting still are not so fun for the active toddler (or the toddler's parents, or anyone else in the near vicinity).

But the trip...oh, the trip! I SO miss traveling! It was so incredible to spend 4 days seeing new sights and experiencing new things with my family. Sooooo good to get away from our routine. And the wedding itself was inspiring...

Kim and her new wife Inka live on boats in Galilee Harbor, an artsy, progressive houseboat community in Sausalito with a history that goes back to the hippie days of the 1960's. During our stay we got to participate in the wedding celebration with their amazing group of dynamic and fascinating friends. We were given one friend's entire apartment to use during out stay and were given rides to and from the airport and all the wedding activities by other friends, each with their own incredible life story.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Apple peeling time!

This is my favorite month! When I was a kid, I'm pretty sure it was because of my birthday (Sept. 24). Well, heck, it's probably still because of my birthday. But there's more to it now...

Growing up in Florida, there was, of course, no change of seasons, except the change from Tourist Season to Not-So-Much Tourist Season. As far as the weather went, we had hurricane season and then the rest of the year. Temperature-wise, things went from Unbelievably Hot and Humid (summer) to Slightly Less Hot and Humid (not summer) with a rare freeze here and there to keep us on our toes.

Here in NC, we have these magical in-betweens called fall and spring and then the extremes of summer and winter. I love September the best because it's when the heat gradually begins to fade and you can feel fall coming, although it's not quite here. Still nice and warm, but not horribly hot. The nights cool down. Clear days become brilliant and the mountains stand out proudly from a tart blue sky, flashing the last of their green hues before putting on the browns and reds of autumn.

Oh, and the flowers and fruit! We get blue asters in September..and cosmos. And then there are the apples. I never cared much about apples when I lived in Florida, but now we have an annual ritual of picking apples then peeling them and making apple sauce, apple butter, apple pies...all that good stuff.

Although I do consider myself a person more inclined to tropical climates and I dream of someday living on a warm, sunny island, I know that if and when I leave here I will miss the texture of the seasons. Every September, I'll feel wistful for that first bit of chill in the air, the ritual of setting up the apple peeler in the kitchen, the cheering sight of that certain brisk shade of blue sky...