Hiking, Me, Pregnancy, TNAB

Date Night TNAB

This spring, I was in the best shape of my life – so far – and when the babysitters, uhm, I mean my parents came to visit in April, I knew I wanted to spend one of my rare date nights with JK hiking with the Thursday Night Afterburners.

I had spent the winter killing my quads and my lungs on the Cable Line Trail on Tiger Mountain, so I was a little bummed when I heard that the week’s scheduled hike was going to be…the Cable Line Trail on Tiger Mountain. But hey, I do kind of love that trail (in a hateful sort of way), plus we were adding some extra summits with actual views, and there would be a sunset and lots of people I like, so who am I to complain.

TNAB West Tiger 3-2-1

I was also 7 weeks pregnant, and if I remember correctly, this was the very last day I actually felt reasonably okay before the worst of the morning sickness began. So it was good timing after all.

TNAB West Tiger 3-2-1 7 Weeks

Being pregnant meant I couldn’t go all out up that hill, but it was nice to just put my headphones in, turn on a podcast, and mosey on up at a comfortable pace for once. Even so, it was my fastest pace ever at a TNAB, and probably the only TNAB where I haven’t felt like I was going to keel over and die.

TNAB West Tiger 3-2-1

The company was excellent, as always, and seeing Mount Rainier adorned with alpenglow really is a rare treat for us these days.

TNAB West Tiger 3-2-1

It’s a little strange to look back on how strong I was back then from my current vegetative state on the couch. I had signed up for a couple of races this spring and summer, mainly to have them as consolation prizes in case infertility struck again, but we lucked out this time! I was too sick to race, but who cares. We have another baby on the way! And since I got into this kind of shape once, that means I can definitely do it again.

Trail time is invaluable me-time, something I didn’t do a good enough job prioritizing in the months after Nora was born. Come next winter, when I’ll have two kids at home, getting some me-time will be a must.

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Hiking, Mount Rainier, Top Trips

Grandparents in Paradise

(I’m starting this blog post at 10:30 in the morning and NORA IS STILL ASLEEP, so at least one of us is over her jetlag and is catching up on lost zzz. The other is chugging as much coffee as pregnancy allows.)

Snowshoeing with grandma and grandpa

It feels kind of wrong to be writing about this trip in July, but since we haven’t quite hit those sweltering summer highs yet here in Seattle, I’ll take us back to the April snow on Mount Rainier.

I go for a Paradise snowshoe at least once a year, whether it’s a magical November jaunt above the clouds, a hike up to see the climbers’ basecamp at Camp Muir, or a freezing cold date with a new friend.

Snowshoeing with grandma and grandpa

Last year, we brought lil’ baby Nora for a very successful picnic at Glacier Vista, and this spring we wanted to repeat that success with the grandparents in tow. They had made their snowshoeing debut at Gold Creek Pond when they visited over Christmas, and apart from some grumbling about having to walk “straight uphill”, I think they enjoyed this outing too.

Paradise with the grandparents

Nora, however, was angry in a way only toddlers can be right off the bat. We figured it was just because she had missed her nap, but then we realized that it was because she did not in any way want to be in the carrier – she wanted to sliiiiide down the magical snow!

Snowshoeing with grandma and grandpa

So once we stopped at a spot that allowed for a relaxing lunch with a view for the adults while still providing a little hill where our little glissader could go crazy, she was very very happy.

Paradise with the grandparents

I can’t wait ’til she tries skiing!

Paradise with the grandparents

(Okay, now it’s 11 and Nora is STILL ASLEEP. This oughta make up for the fact that she was up for 19 hours straight when we flew home from Europe.)

ali 007
Layouts, Scrapbooking

Layout Share

I have so much to share from the past few months, but since we just returned from a trip to Norway and England and I have been awake since 2 am thanks to jet lag and the return of raccoons nesting under our deck and I have no brain power but am desperately trying to stay up at least another hour or so and am obviously writing even longer run-on sentences than normal and am probably not making much sense, I am just going to share some scrapbook pages for now.


These were all made for Ali Edwards’ Creative Team, because she was the only one who could motivate me to scrapbook through morning sickness. For reals. First up: documenting JK’s volcano climbs. I joined him on Mount St. Helens and Mount Adams, but he added Mount Baker, Glacier Peak, and Mount Rainier to complete all five Washington volcanoes. That deserves a scrapbook page!


Next is a gushy page about Nora, our greatest adventure so far. Aaaww.


Back when I put together my hiking/memoir album, I wrote a list of must-make layouts, and TNAB was at the top of that list. We may not be TNABing much these days, but we have a lot of good memories from those tipsy evening summits.

Born to hike

This one documents Nora’s transition from womb-dwelling hiker via various carriers to her current status as a legit biped. (She even hikes with a BACKPACK, which is pretty much the cutest thing ever.)

Our life looks like this

I participated in Ali’s Day in the Life in April (egads, I just realized that I failed to include a date on this page!) but instead of making a mini album, I just made a spread that will go in Nora’s album. I definitely want to make more of these as our lives and routines change.

Hello Vacation

This last one is from my birthday trip to Hood Canal, a last-minute adventure that ended up being one of my favorite vacations ever. Seriously, it’s right up there with St. John! Therefore it deserves a spread in the vacation album, even though it was only a weekend trip.

Now I will attempt to make friends with Pacific Standard Time and hopefully return with exciting tales of nauseous hiking and growing bellies (is it chocolate? is it a fetus?) at some point when I start feeling vaguely human again.


Now with more Mukmuks

This blog has been silent lately, and for once it’s not due to laziness – I have merely been sick as a dog for the very best reason ever – a new little trailmate for Nora is expected to join our family around Thanksgiving! JK and I are overjoyed, and Nora has taken to affectionately patting my belly and calling it “mama’s ball”.

15 Weeks

Ali 024
Albums, Layouts, Scrapbooking

Southwest Vacation Album

In the fall of 2011, Josie and I surprised Karen with a birthday trip to the Southwest. Almost five years later, I am finally scrapbooking that trip. Many huzzahs!

Southwest 2011 Album

Unfortunately I never really blogged about this trip, which is a shame – we visited some mighty beautiful places. I also can’t find the journal I kept on the trip, so I had to rely on my aging brain for memories. Luckily Jo and Karen were able to fill in a few blanks for me as well as provide me with extra photos. Thank you, ladies!

Now, for the design – we’ve already established that I suck at finishing albums (really, what on earth am I even doing starting another one), so in order for this to become a doable project, I decided on a clean layout (which is yet another variant of one of my go-to designs) that is repeated throughout the album.

Ali Edwards released these handwritten Travel Words this month, and they inspired this whole project! I cut them out with my Silhouette and I’m going to use them as my titles for every section of the trip. As for the rest of my supplies, so far I’ve really only used white cardstock, two old sheets of feather patterned paper, and a pack of wood veneer feathers.

Southwest 2011 Album

Oh, and a sheet of vellum with feathers on it too! And these ancient state dies from Quickutz. Behind this vellum opening page, I added some emails I had printed out – some rather hilarious correspondence between us and Karen’s husband when we were planning the trip behind her back.

Then the introduction page, setting up what would become the theme of the trip:

Southwest 2011 Album

Every highlight of the trip will get its own spread, like this one from White Pocket:

Southwest 2011 Album

(Side note – the photos look so much better in real life, I’ve totally blown them out here in an attempt to make the background look white. Photographing layouts is the worst.)

I’m going to just stick to this design since it’s so easy and quick to put together and adds a nice sense of continuity throughout the album. Here’s the spread from Coyote Gulch – same design, but flipped:

Southwest 2011 Album

In addition to these spreads, I also have a bunch of memorabilia that I want to use. Here’s the adorable prairie dog adoption certificate from Bryce National Park – of course I adopted one, those things are basically marmots:

Southwest 2011 Album

The prairie dog postcard was an actual card that I sent home to JK, so I’m leaving it open on the back so you can read it. Well I can, because it’s in Norwegian…and JK and I are probably the only people in the world who can decipher my horrid writing. This is why I use computer journaling on my pages, people.

Southwest 2011 Album

Josie and I always go bananas collecting park stamps from ranger stations, so here are some of those, keeping with the design of the previous pages:

Southwest 2011 Album

The last page of the album is another printed email thread – a really wonderful thank you note from Karen followed by us gushing about how much fun we had. Aaaw.

So what do I still need to do to finish the album?

– make a bunch more section spreads (from the Narrows, Peek-a-Boo & Spooky Canyons, Bryce, Valley of Fire etc)

– make a pocket that will hold a DVD of this video that Karen made from the trip (and a QR code that will take you to the Vimeo link)

– put together a couple more pocket pages filled with memorabilia

I can totally finish this.