Tuesday 31 May 2011

Day 2: Roadworks and Rainbows

Couer d'Alene to Bozeman
Distance: 597 kms
Roadkill: 2
Poosplosions: 2

This is part of a series of posts from our 2011 road trip. See the overview post for links to the other posts.

The day did not start so well (again), Jeremy woke at 3am (a pattern perhaps?) after falling out of his bed, but fortunately got to sleep relatively quickly once he snuggled up with us (he did kick me a few times though!). Then to top things off he did a massive poo and made a mess on his bed just before breakfast.

However, the breakfast at Abbotswood House B&B (Eggs Benedict and home-made muesli yum!) was wonderful so we soon forgot about the night. We can highly recommend staying at this B&B!

We set off from Coeur d'Alene for Billings on what was our longest distance day. As the whole trip was on I-90 we planned to cruise along at 100-120 km/h. What we didn't plan on was lots of roadworks which slowed us down a bit and rain on the other side of Missoula. We stopped in Missoula for lunch and for Jeremy to have a quick run around the shops.

The rain had a side benefit though as we got to see a double rainbow about an hour out from Billings (our stay for night 2). I have never seen both ends of a rainbow before let alone 2! We are also goign into colder weather and the reports are that tonight Yellowstone will receive more snow. Hopefully this will not cause us any problems tomorrow.

Update: corrected distance; added Google Maps directions, note on the B&B, a new photo and a link to the overview post.

Day 1: Where's the roadkill?

Seattle to Couer d'Alene
Distance: 562 kms
Roadkill: 0

This is part of a series of posts from our 2011 road trip. See the overview post for links to the other posts.

Today we set out from Seattle on our road trip to Denver. We had planned to start at 9am, but Jeremy woke up at 3am (he was thirsty) and did not get back to sleep until after 4am so our start was delayed until 11.40. Ruby drove the first part along I-90 and for the most part the trip was made up of very green forest, mountains and over Snoqualmie Pass we were near the snow line. In the western USA they are having a very cold spring and we have not noticed much of a change from the cold weather in Sydney (if anything it is colder here!).

We stopped for lunch and a driver change at the Ryegrass rest area which overlooks the Wild Horse wind farm (at 229 MW larger than any currently operating in Australia). There we snacked on leftover pizza and cheesecake from our dinner at Cheesecake Factory the previous night in Seattle (Jeremy had yogurt and bananas - for a change he was not interested in pizza).

From there I drove to Grand Coulee Dam. The countryside here was different to the first leg and it is was cleared land and canyons. We arrived at Grand Coulee before 4pm, but had missed the power station tour which was just starting on the other side of the dam (and I think might have tested Jeremy's patience at 50 mins). We had a look around the visitor centre and started off for Couer d'Alene. On the way from Ruby commented that we had not seen any roadkill (unlike in Australia!).

We arrived at Abbotswood House B&B late in the evening. One of the features of this house is all the rooms look onto an indoor pool which, of course, Jeremy was fascinated with. I took him for a swim before bed (the B&B owner did have floaties for him) which he readily enjoyed! Even when out of the pool he kept trying to reach in and have a splash...

Update: corrected distance; added Google Maps directions and a link to the overview post.

Tuesday 24 May 2011

He understands cake!

Wow! 3 months has zipped by. OK so for the big announcement (in case you don't follow me on Twitter) is that Ruby is pregnant with our 2nd child who is due in mid/late September. Like Jeremy we have a nickname / codename: Noodle (we decided not to continue the nut theme!).

The full photo album is available via the following link: Feb - April 2011

Since we knew Jeremy would have a sibling by September we decided it was time for Jeremy to move up to a single bed. The move to his new bed was done in 2 stages, first with the mattress on the floor and then with the mattress on the base 2 weeks later. We needn't have worried as he took to the new bed with few problems and has not fallen out. The bed does have a safety rail and Jeremy makes sure that we put it up every night (he can get quite upset if we forget!). He can climb out, but has only got up a couple of times. He really likes playing with some of his toys or reading his books. Next task potty training!!

In the past couple of months Jeremy has really started to understand what we are saying. I have even had to create a new playlist on my iPod which only includes songs with clean lyrics! He is also getting better at saying new words, we do try to say what things are but he is picking up many other words too. During easter he had received a cake and we had decided to let him have a slice after his dinner. After dinner he was very upset so I said to him "would you like some cake". Immediately he stopped crying, walked over to his table and sat down at his table and waited calmly for us to get the cake. Ruby and I looked at each other and said "He understands cake!".

Jeremy really enjoyed Easter and very quickly worked out how to unwrap Easter eggs and eat the whole one (there is a great one of him in the photo album eating a rather large egg). He is very protective of the egg and will not share the chocolate with anyone. We get pushed away when asking for a piece or he just gives us the wrapping.

Around the house a few more of the jobs are being completed (bloody list is not diminishing though). Over the Easter break the large lemon-scented gum tree (which have a tendency to drop branches) was trimmed to remove branches overhanging the house, a large branch over the driveway as well as a number of suckers. A dead tree to the side of our house was also removed which will need to be replaced with another plant. I started work on a new garden at the front of the house where was is an odd gap between the garden around the gum tree and the neighbours fence. The garden is basically done (border, mulch and drippers) done I just need to add some plants to it...

We originally thought there was not going to be much painting in the new place apart from the colour changes we made to the bedrooms as it had been freshly painted. Over time we have discovered the paint job was not too great and the paint used is not good for wiping off stains (not great for a young family!). So over Easter I also repainted our hallway (and a slight change of colour to what Taubmans calls "Coffee Time") and I have plans to repaint our dining room. The outside of the house was not recently painted (the facia boards and wooden windows) so I have started repairs on those and am hoping to have that all done by summer. However, if it keeps on raining each weekend it will be a case of which summer!

And lastly I also did a redesign of the blog. The tools and options are much improved since I last tried this. The old one was mostly hand coded and the new one was all done in the blogger GUI. Still some things to fix, but it is a matter of getting time!