Saturday, September 27, 2014

49 weeks: Surprising chompers

Last week, after not much pomp and circumstance, we made a discovery: Oswin's second tooth has come in!

This was a big surprise to us with all that the first tooth entailed, including a low grade fever, vomiting, refusing all solids for a full day (VERY unlike our big time eater), and general fatigue. She had her crabby moments for two days this week, but nothing that didn't quickly pass. So you can imagine our surprise when we realized that she now has two bottom front teeth!

Other than that, nothing much is going on, other than typical busyness. Oswin and I have been getting out for runs 5 days a week, which has been awesome. (For those in the market, I highly recommend the BOB jogging stroller!) I didn't realize how much of a weight training exercise running with her in the stroller actually is, until I let Dan push her during our Saturday run. WOW. I have probably never run as fast as I did that day. Or maybe it's just because I feel that I run as slow as molasses with her in the stroller, so I felt fast by comparison. Either way, it's been great all around. It gets us out for about an hour, and sometimes ends with picking some fresh figs at one of our local community trees for a post run snack, and more often than not some gardening and harvesting of kale and rainbow chard from our garden. 

Oh, and in case you were wondering, that is indeed an AT-ST walker from Star Wars taking on the city of Philadelphia on Oswin's onesie. You're welcome.

Hope everyone has had an awesome week and has a great weekend!

A la prochaine friends...


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Sakura Bloom Sling Diaries: Vision

As many of you may recall, Dan and I have each been chosen to be sling diarists for the Sakura Bloom Sling Diaries Volume V: All the Love. This is the fourth of six posts that I will be sharing here on the blog (you can find my first post here, second post here, and third post here), and Dan will be sharing his over on Instagram a little later on. Today's post is all about the theme of vision. Thank you all, new readers and old alike, for following along on this journey with us.

My sweet little Oswin,

I could sit here and say that I have visions for your future; that you'll go to a good university, followed by an esteemed graduate school, become a doctor or scientist, meet someone who makes you laugh, and start a family. I could say that I see you taking a gap year, travelling around Europe, followed by teaching English in Argentina, and finally helping the needy in a tiny village somewhere off the grid. I could say that I envision you making all of your food from scratch, and organic, of course, for all of your life (including that gap year). That you'll never try a cigarette, that you'll listen to Johnny Cash, that you'll never be mean to another human or animal, that you'll always choose to root for Philadelphia sports teams...

...I might as well also envision that you'll find the cure for cancer, while you're at it. 

(It'll probably be during that gap year. I would envision that gap year being a very productive one for you.)

Being that you're just a wee babe, just approaching your very first birthday, it feels silly to think those things. As parents, we want what is best for our children. We mean well, in everything we try to teach our children, with every experience we provide for them, with every lesson learned. But what if, instead of trying to shape their futures for them, and lead them down a specific path, we become more interested in helping them envision their own future, towards their own personal happiness?

Which leads me to my real and truthful vision for your future Oswin: I want you to be happy. 
Whatever that is for you.

Maybe you want to cure cancer, on a gap year in Europe, while cooking all of your organic meals from scratch. But maybe that's not what you want at all. Perhaps the life you choose will not involve travelling, or graduate school, or jamming out to quality tunes by Johnny Cash. Maybe you will end up rooting for New York sports teams...

...I have to put my foot down on that last part, as there is only so much a Mama's heart can take.

I hope that we can help you in your quest for happiness, to find what you are truly passionate about in life, and support you. Whatever that is. I feel that our job is to expose you to a lot of different things, such as travel, cooking, gardening, the great outdoors, reading, music, and see where those take you. Sometimes activities you loved one minute can be flights of fancy, but sometimes those flights of fancy can lead you to the real deal, to what you could see yourself doing for the rest of your life. I hope we can find that balance, of giving you your space to explore and thrive, while being there to support you along the way. 

Your vision and your future are yours and yours alone, Oswin. You are the only one that has to live in it, and find happiness within it. Once you figure that part out, all else will fall into place. And if doesn't, you're always welcome to change your mind and start over. It may be different than what Papa and I would have done, or thought would make you happy, but that's the beauty of life: that one little person, created by two people, can have their own thoughts, ideas and opinions. Use your intelligence, use your inspirations, and use your inner (and outer) voice to create the most joyous and love filled life that you can possibly envision...and then live it. But just know that Papa and I will be there every step of the way, and we can't wait to see what life you create for yourself. 

Just please please pretty please don't become a Yankees fan. 



Sling pictured: Essential Silk Sling in Shadow Tart, by Sakura Bloom

Monday, September 15, 2014

48 weeks: Funniest Person in the Room

Last week, little miss Oswin Jade turned 48 weeks old, and as per usual, there were some things about this week that really stuck out...

{"They're called illllusions Michael."}

...namely that she is really coming into her silliness.

All last week she would break into random bouts of giggles, and sometimes boundless laughing, for no apparent reason.

{Oswin says, "live each day like it's a 1920's beach party."}

She was cracking herself up left and right. I'm pretty sure she was the funniest person in the room, all the rooms actually, all of last week.

{Oswin doing her best Patrick McGoohan, a la "The Prisoner"}

Sometimes she would laugh at random things that we're not quite sure of specifically. Other times she would laugh at us doing something silly that we didn't think was as funny as it actually was to her. She was in her own little world of hilarity, this one.

Paper bags being crumpled? HOLD THE PHONE FUNNY.

It was really cute, and I hope this silliness sticks around forever and ever.

I'm eager to see what shenanigans week 49 brings on.

A la prochaine friends...


Sunday, September 14, 2014

The Harvest.

I love this time of year. September really is such a great month to live where we do, as there are so many festivals and celebrations. But not only that, it's time to start picking figs from one of the two community trees in our little village. 

I love that we have community fig trees. There's nothing better for me than taking Oswin out for a run in the BOB, and then walking to the trees and picking a handful of figs for not only my post run snack, but also to mix into Oswin's dinner. Picking the fruit and vegetables that you're about to prepare in your next meal direct from the source is where it's at. 

As for our garden, we're harvesting kale and rainbow chard every night, and adding them to stews, soups and smoothies. Kale is not easily found here in France, nor do the French really seem to get into it. Choux friseé non-pomme, as it's known in French, has done very well in our garden, and we're now reaping the benefits. 

We've just about finished the four-day period of introducing rainbow chard to Oswin, and kale will be next up on her menu. I love being able to make her meals with either food that we've grown ourselves, or picked from local trees. 

Now that summer has wound down, we're preparing our fall garden. So far we've planted carrot and kale seeds, with a few rows left for us to fill. We're planning on putting in parsley, cilantro and one or two more vegetables. What are you favorite fall vegetables to plant? We'd love some suggestions of how to round out our fall garden! 

A la prochaine friends...


Saturday, September 13, 2014

Brasserie Gessienne.

Today, we went to a birthday party. But not just any birthday party, a birthday party for a local brewery. 

You may remember that during the Thoiry Salon des Vins, we were invited by a vendor to the 2nd anniversary of their business. The business happens to be a great local brewery, located in the nearby town of Ornex, France, called Brasserie Gessienne

{Oswin may or may not have had some strawberry was a birthday party after all...}

It was a small event. It seemed like we were the only ones there that didn't know everyone. That was ok, because everyone was really nice. There was strawberry shortcake, and of course, beers to try. 

We finished our samples, and were than asked a question: do we like whiskey? 

Why yes, yes we do. 

Here, try this, it's made with the same malt as Lagavulin....

Lagavulin? You mean my favorite scotch (not whiskey, but that's ok), in the whole wide world? 

We'd love some. 

What resulted was a look of amazement from Dan, one that said "this could be in my top ten." It was smokey. It was peaty perfection, in a beer. Two bottles of Humeur du Brasseur SVP. 

We had a great time at the birthday party. It's a small brewery, one without a bar to speak of. There was a stage set up with a band, a pig on a spit, bleu de Gex cheese, and the aforementioned cake. And of course beer. Really the best way to celebrate a birthday party, am I right? 

Happy 2nd Birthday Brasserie Gessienne. Keep on making the good stuff, and we hope we're able to celebrate with you for your 3rd. 

A la prochaine friends...


PS; If you're in the Pays de Gex/Rhone-Alpes/Geneva area and looking to procure some beers from Brasserie Gessienne, here is a list of places to do so. You're welcome.