Homeward Bound.

I am writing this as I’m headed home – currently somewhere over the Rockies – but there’s still a bit more to share from our trip.  Thanks for indulging me with these trip recaps and photo bombs.  Believe it or not, I have many many more photos I’m not including – I can’t help myself!  Journaling our travels is something I love to do, and they are always some of my favorite posts look back on years later.   

Casey’s conference started Monday morning, so Cullen and I have been going it solo for the rest of our trip.  One of my good friends here took Monday off from work so we could hang out, so we spent the day lunching and walking around Old Town together!

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The Old Town streets are pretty narrow, and the shops are all tiny and congested – adorable, but not very stroller-friendly.  So we went back to babywearing this week, and we have both loved it!  At home, I do most of our walking with the stroller these days, but even at almost a year old, Cullen has been loving the Ergo these past few days. 

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He was so cozy that he even took a few afternoon naps passed out on my chest.  If he happened to fall asleep while we were out, I would just walk up and down the neighborhood while he continued to snooze.  Good exercise for me, and good rest for him!

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I had planned to take Cullen out on a mommy-son dinner date, but after walking 6 miles through Old Town with an extra 21 pounds strapped to my chest, I was WIPED by the time I got back to the hotel.  I ended up sharing grapes, hummus, and pitas with Cullen. 

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Followed by this delicious chocolate graham cracker bar after he went to bed.  I didn’t feel like sharing.

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Tuesday was another active day out!  After breakfast and Cullen’s morning nap at the hotel, we ventured out to meet up with Lisa and Caroline again. 

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The four of us headed to the new Teaism in Old Town.  I had been to Teaism up in DC when we lived here, and I was so excited to hear one had opened down here.  I imagine we would have done some serious damage here had it been open when we lived here.

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I ordered a side of sweet potatoes with miso sauce for Cullen.  He loved it and ate the entire bowl.  I snuck a few bites too – absolutely delicious.  I’m going to remake this very soon!

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I saw bubble tea on the menu and ordered it immediately.  For some reason it didn’t even occur to me while I was drinking it, but I’m fairly certain this was made with milk (duh – it looks pretty milky).  I haven’t had significant amounts of dairy in a while now, so this explains why my stomach felt so off last night.  It was absolutely delicious though – worth it.

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For lunch, I ordered the tempeh burger.  I’m actually not usually a huge fan of tempeh, but the menu description sounded good enough to make me want to give it a shot.  I’m so glad I did!  This was one of the best “burgers” I’ve had to date. 

It was also GIGANTIC.  I have a monster appetite, and even I couldn’t eat all this food.  There were two thick slabs of deliciously marinated tempeh, with a giant portabella mushroom sandwiched in between.  I ditched the top piece of bread since this was so big – it didn’t need it!

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The food was outstanding, and I’m already wishing I could have it again.  My only complaint was lack of high chairs.  I made it work by letting Cullen sit on my lap, and did my best to dodge his swipes at my plate.

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Both babies were really well behaved at lunch, but I knew they were itching to stretch their legs and play.  We packed them up and walked down to one of my favorite Old Town waterfront spots to let them run around.

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When I was newly pregnant, I used to walk the dogs past this park and playground several times each day.  I tried to look into our future, and picture myself playing with our baby there, meeting mom friends, and chasing him around the grass.  It took a little longer than I thought it would, but we made it back there eventually.

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As the one year mark approaches, I have to finally give in and admit that my child desperately needs a haircut.  We have reached the point of full blown mullet.  It’s ridiculous.  I am holding onto his baby hair for a few more days!

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He and Caroline were too funny together.  I mentioned it before, but it was hilarious to watch Cullen get totally whooped by a little girl.  Chasing down her target…

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Distracting with conversation and a pretty smile…

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Making her move…

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Checkmate.

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Despite her tackles, they had a lot of fun together, and Lisa and I had a blast snapping pictures and watching them play.  We finished up at the park and walked along the waterfront for a bit.

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When we lived here, we had almost no outdoor space – just a small patio.  So I walked our dogs several times a day, and almost always walked them over here.  It actually felt kind of weird to be back in Old Town without them!  They loved this path.

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But our newest family member was here having fun and seeing all mom’s favorite places.

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The trip would not be complete without a stroll past my old place.  Looks exactly the same – they even have a flag up!  There was also a chewed up dog bone on the front porch.  Sniff.  I loved this row house so much.

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Cullen fell asleep in the Ergo while we walked, so I said goodbye to Lisa and Caroline and headed toward home.  Halfway there, Casey called to say he was done a bit early and headed our way.  Since Cullen was already napping, I figured I’d just stay out and keep walking up and down the streets.

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Casey and I ended up walking a few more miles together.  His conference schedule was really busy, so I was thrilled to get a few unexpected hours together outside of the hotel room.  We walked along King Street and ran into Ashley!  She has been such a great friend to me for several years, and I’m so happy we’ve stayed close despite our physical distance. 

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We looped around to the waterfront and back.  This place is just so beautiful.

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By the time I finally got back to the hotel room, my legs were aching.  After feeding Cullen and getting him to bed, I mapped out the day’s walking route out of curiosity.  Over the course the afternoon, I ended up walking almost NINE miles, and over half with Cullen strapped to the front of me.  No wonder my feet are so tired!

I ate a huge box of grain salads, veggies, and tofu from the Whole Foods hot bar and then crashed on the couch to watch the debates and wait for Casey. 

Now I’m headed home, and probably landing soon.  We survived the first four-hour leg to Salt Lake City, and now we’re on the shorter leg toward Seattle.  Casey and I ended up being separated for this flight, and he wins husband of the year award for strapping Cullen into the Ergo and taking him to his seat.  The plane is silent, so I hope they are both getting some sleep!  It actually feels really strange to be flying without a baby.  Although I do have one directly behind me, and another across the aisle – too funny.

See you back on the West Coast!