Sunday, October 7, 2012

Closing Ceremonies of Summer: Camping Adventures

Well, summer is definitely over. Sorry for the late closure.

(The car biz is non-stop! I've been too exhausted during the week to blog! Even though I'm blogging a season behind, I have moved on to Pumpkin beer, winter squash and scarves.)

Let me tell you how camping began for me.

Exactly one year before our wedding, August 2010, Ian talked me into going on a week long roadtrip/camping trip from Pittsburgh, to New York State, Boston and Acadia National Park in Maine, to Connecticut coast back to Pittsburgh.

He did all the work. He did all the planning, the packing and per my request, we deviated from tent camping one night and stayed in a nice Boston hotel.

It was truly my first real camping experience (except for Boston). I had camped in a tent overnight in about the 6th grade, and stayed in cabins for summer camp and Girl Scouts.... but this was a week long commitment in a tent!

I trusted Ian would make it OK for me and he did. The experience was far beyond my expectations.

We started our trip with our first night camping in New York (state) and then the next day we made our way to Boston where we biked all around the city to see the historical sites...

...which I don't recommend as it is not a bike friendly city. The sites are definitely walkable! Walk the Freedom Trail to see lots of historical sites in only 2.5 miles.

Next, we headed north to Maine and we hiked, biked and camped in Acadia National Park which had some of the most incredible views I have seen in my life.

We plan all of our meals for camping trips as this makes packing more efficient. We even plan a few "themed" dinners, like Mexican night! 

The trip was a huge success, except for when our marinating raw chicken spilled allover our entire cooler that held all of our drinks, lunch essentials and yogurt. If you have read prior posts of mine, you probably have caught on to my extreme fear of raw meat. Especially, raw meat juice. 

After a minor freak out, we cleaned out the cooler and washed off all of our food. Once that issue was cleared up, I moved on to my slight worry that we might be eaten by bears.

We also had to cancel our stop in Connecticut because of a huge storm. So, the end of the trip was a little rough, driving 15 hours from Acadia National Park to Pittsburgh in non-stop rain. I don't recommend this.

About a year later, and only two weeks before our wedding day, Ian talked me into going camping again. He had taken the bar exam and wanted to get away, so I decided to take a break from wedding-planning-obsessed-mode and tried to relax for a few nights up north in Traverse City. It was BEAUTIFUL there. The campgrounds have a path that leads to the beach and so we spent most of our time relaxing on the Lake Michigan sand. 

We went up there again this summer and discovered even more. The town is full of unique restaurants, boutiques, wineries and antiques. We also went on a camping trip with my parents near the Indiana Dunes, where I discovered fire dancing and moon tea.

More on that soon!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Piper's One!

Piper turned one!!!

In one whole year she has managed to almost be 100% potty trained, she has learned how to sit, and she has managed to find her way into our bed every night... right between Ian and I. 

(I know... judge away... It's terrible and one of these days we are going to fix that. hehe)

Piper is extremely needy, loves her routines and her favorite spot is on the couch wrapped in a comfy blanket... just like me.

Although she listens to me and shows me affection sometimes... like when she licks my face at 6am because she has to go to the potty... Ian is her favorite. I can't really explain it, but he is.

Piper still has a bum leg, but we stretch it with her and do her doctor prescribed "water therapy" in the bath tub. I kid you not.

Although I had every intention of baking Piper doggy cake for her birthday, I got all "working mom" and decided to pick her up a frosted "diva" treat from the pet store instead. I justified it like this... we were already at the pet store... and even the treat was too big for my less-than-5-pound dog. Baking a cake that only she could eat really didn't make any sense. (#workingmomproblems)

Here are a few pics from our big bash. :)