October 10, 2006

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by Christy

There isn't a whole lot to report about daily life here in Corvallis. The weather has continued to be nice, with warm 70 degree days and no rain. However, the weather forecast says that the honeymoon will end on Sunday, with rain all next week. We'll see. Sheryl (my mom) and Patty (my aunt) will be coming for a visit next Tuesday, so hopefully they will bring in some sunshine.

As you can see in the pictures, Margie (Ted's mom) and Cliff (Ted's pop) came to visit in September. It was great to have them, and we had some beautiful weather and lots of great time outdoors. The highlight of the trip was whale-watching at the coast, from Newport up to Depoe Bay. There are resident gray whales here that feed offshore, so you can see them spout then watch with binoculars to get a better look. If you are lucky, as we were, they will stick their tails up out of the water as they dive down to feed. It's almost addictive--once you see a tail, you just have to keep watching for another! I was so excited the first time I saw a tail that I was bouncing the binoculars too much to get a good look! I had to remember to stay calm for the next one.

We have been spending lots of quality time with our neighbors, Tim, Heather and Henry. Anders and Henry are becoming fast friends. They ask about each other nearly everyday, so one of us ends up strolling over to the other's house for a little visit. They are starting to be more interactive with their play. The last few times they have been together, one of them gets silly and starts saying something funny (Henry was going "bam!" I think), then the other ones does it and they chase each other around laughing. It's a riot, until one of them falls down, but that doesn't stop the game from starting all over again.

We have been enjoying our time with Heather and Tim too. We have a lot in common, including a love of local, fresh, homemade food. We've shared a meal each weekend so far, usually after a hike. They have really made our move easier, making us feel at home.

Anders and I continue to enjoy Water Babies class. We go 2 times per week. Anders is a pro at dipping under the water now, and wants so bad to jump off the side but hasn't quite figured out how to jump off both feet yet. As part of class, I hold him as he stands on the side and we say "1, 2, 3, blast off!" and I jump him into the water.

We aren't liking our gymnastics class much, but Anders gets to do a lot of running around, which can never hurt. Corvallis has a great resource that we will soon start using when the weather gets bad--the Indoor Park. A group of parents rents the gym at the Boys and Girls Club, a short bike ride from our house. They have a ton of big toys, like hot wheels, big cars, kitchen sets, and other big toys. The parents take turns opening the gym, sanitizing the toys, etc., and you can bring your kids there to play during the day. It's open 5 days a week too! I was surprised at how well the kids do at playing on their own, while the moms sit around and talk. Anders has been sticking pretty close to me lately, but he even took off and played and had a great time. I suppose we will start going more in November, when the weather turns cold.

We are still enjoying the farmers markets twice a week, but the selection is starting to thin out a bit. There are still lots of veggies and great apples this time of year, so we are eating with the fall season.

Ironically, even though this is one of the most bike-friendly places in America, I feel like we are driving more than ever. I think it's part of being in a small town; parking is never an issue, and it's so easy to just drive somewhere and run a quick errand anytime. I think it's also because we are more scheduled than we were in Minneapolis, going to Anders' activities and trying to fit errands in between activities and nap time. And worst of all, we have to drive to get to our beloved hiking trails. One of the things we miss most about Norway and Minneapolis is walking everywhere. Our house isn't positioned well for lots of walking trips. I'm really going to make an effort to drive even less, even after the rain starts.

There was more to say than I thought! Hope all is well in your world. Drop us an email, and plan your next vacation in Oregon! We will go whale watching!

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