Wednesday, August 28, 2013


Spencer finished up his internship in New York and we flew to Salt Lake (after driving to Atlanta) to drop off the babies and head on to Mexico.

It was awesome. The weather was perfect. The food was... interesting. My travel buddy was great! I can't imagine visiting Oaxaca and not having Spencer's Spanish skills with us. He did great.

We were there for a week and we took whatever we could shove into our backpacks... our clothing choice was a little thin at the end of the trip. Most of the time was spent in swimsuits though, playing in the ocean and getting way too much sun.

Spencer served his mission in the state of Oaxaca nearly 8 years prior so it was fun for him to go back and see the changes, and it was fun for me to order piña colada's and lay on the beach.

We ate a lot of tacos, plantains, and elote (Corn on a stick)... as well as a lot of bags of "agua de sabor" fresh fruit blended up with a little sugar and water and served in a bag with a straw hanging out. Everything was delicious, but it was nice to eat some American food after a week of Mexican.

We want on a morning dolphin ride tour and ended up jumping into the middle of the ocean to swim with a wild sea turtle. I was only in the water for a few minutes cause I really didn't want to die. Another night we swam in a lagoon with Bioluminescence. The water was extremely warm, and every motion you made the water would light up like it was full of glowsticks. 

After a few days at the coast (Puerto Escondido) we traveled by van through the mountains. It was 6 hours of torture. It was definitely an authentic Mexican experience. Especially when we had to stop due to a protest on the road. The entire pueblo (village) had come out with chicken crates and anything else they could find to block the road so that their voices could be heard. We just grabbed our backpacks and as the only American's walked through the town, and got in another van on the other side of the protest and continued on our journey. 

We traveled to the capital city of Oaxaca and walked through the old town square to admire churches built in the 1600's, later we had famous Oaxacan hot chocolate on the Zócalo (town square). The following day we traveled up to Monte Alban. Monte Alban was home of an ancient civilization that lived on the top of a mountain, everything is in really great condition, considering how old it is.  It was unlike any American national park or reserve. You are left to travel around pyramids and structures built in 500BC with no rules, no guides. It was awesome. 

We flew home to happy babies that had a great time spending the week at Grandma Orton's house. I'm not sure when we will head back to that part of Mexico, if ever, but I'm glad Spencer was able to go see his mission as a non-missionary before he becomes a slave to his law firm next year.

Friday, August 16, 2013


The Big Apple.
The Concrete Jungle.
The City that Never Sleeps.

Whatever you decide to call New York City, all I can think about is a tiny 1-bedroom apartment (paying $2100 a month in rent), sweltering heat, and seeing Spencer a minimal amount of time.
100 Morningside drive
We had a fun summer in New York. Saw a lot of the touristy sites, and lived like locals stuffing our kids in closets and sleeping on futons. We grocery shopped in little stores that didn't fit the stroller. we ate pancakes and sandwiches and cold cereal for the majority of our at home meals. We went to plenty of public parks. We walked, we walked and we walked.

I kept a tally of the amount of miles I walked with the kids in the stroller. Before we went to the City I wasn't sure if our double stroller was worth the investment. Since then, having walked around most of the Upper West Side and beyond, I have deemed it one of our best purchases.

117 miles. (Mostly walked in flip flops) (and mostly planned around eating food)

Speaking of tallies we also had a little record of how many traffic violations we incurred.

2 parking tickets.
car was towed once.
pulled over twice.

-$145 in parking tickets, one for parking too close to a fire hydrant, and the other for not moving the car on a street cleaning day.
- The car was towed once in the night while they repaved the street. Kind of freaky to walk outside and not see your car. (No fines)
-Pulled over twice, one for speeding (a warning) and the other time for turning right on a red (a warning ) I never knew until that moment that you couldn't turn right on a red in NYC.

Glad to be back on the suburban roads again without a yellow cab in sight.

We truly had a great summer. Spencer spent most of his time at the office or doing events with the firm and built friendships with other interns. He spent 3 LONG weeks in Germany working in the Frankfurt office. He ate delicious gourmet food while I stuffed my face with Goldfish crackers. We went to broadway musicals, the Metropolitan Opera in the park and nearly all of the major museums. We walked the Brooklyn bridge, visited all 5 boroughs a couple times, drove out to New York's suburbs, ate a lot of pizza and hot dogs, and got pretty decent at using the 1-train.

And anything that we missed out on this summer we'll have the opportunity to do again next year.
My hard working little Spencey Baby got an offer from Clifford Chance.

I'm sad that we only have one more year at Cornell to enjoy the beauty of Ithaca, but we are excited that all of Spencer's hard work has paid off and there will be a job waiting for him after graduation. (Even if that job is located on the most populated and expensive island in America)

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Drew Boy

Our little Drew turned three years old on July 12th.
It was a low key day. We ate brownies for lunch and dinner, his orange scooter arrived in the mail, and we met up with his birthday twin (my cousins son) for some arcade games at the chuck-e-cheese in Harlem.

It's exactly what you think of when you hear "chuck-e-cheese in Harlem".
half the games weren't working, and the ones that you could actually play didn't produce tickets... but the kids didn't care at all.
 It was a great night, and a perfect way to spend Drew's third birthday while in our little one bedroom Manhattan apartment.

Drew at three is a sensitive sweet boy.
Claire has been in our family for over a year and he is still warming up to her...

He loves hard boiled eggs-- loves, is an understatement. He could easily put down a dozen eggs a day as long as the "seed" (yolk) has been removed.

He also loves any and all kinds of fruit. He has become our little fruit bat steering clear of proteins and most grains.

His favorite color is orange. He wants to wear orange clothes, color with orange crayons, and eat orange food.

One of my favorite things he says right now is "I love you (insert random number)". Instead of "I love you too(two)"it has become "I love you four" or five, seven, nine.

Happy Birthday to our sweet Drew Boy. We love you three!