Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Favorite Five Victoria Moments

After Seattle, we took the ferry to Victoria. It was Jack's first international trip, and my first time in my Grandma Horman's homeland. When we first arrived, I was just grateful to step off that boat with my bruised and battered worldview that "I don't get motion sick." Then we checked into our hotel and we never wanted to leave. But we were only there for 24 hours. So we did leave. 24 hours later.

1. Magnolia Hotel and Spa
These wonderful people gave us an early check in to an upgraded room, and the first hour in Victoria was bliss because I was so deliriously excited. The view, the bathtub, the chocolates, the crib, the central location, the lunch recommendations, the many elderly guests who fawned over Jack, the staff who insisted that no one complained about Jack crying at 2:00 in the morning. I wished we spent the entire week in this superlative room.

2. Red Fish Blue Fish 
Best fish and chips I’ve ever had. Full stop.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Favorite Five Seattle Moments

Last week we went to Seattle, and now I feel like I understand all my friends from Seattle a little bit better (I’ve never travelled anywhere and thought that). For those lucky ducks who follow Chris’ hilarious blog, you know it wasn’t all rainbows and unicorns for the Perrys, but it did have some great moments.

1. Eating freshly fried mini-donuts in Pike Place Market
Our first stop of the trip was lunch at Pike Place. Before we settled into a couple Beecher’s grilled cheeses, we impulse bought donuts from a little stand. Maybe they were delicious, I have already forgotten, but we cherished those omg-I-finally-have-food- in-my-mouth donuts. It was a sweet, private moment, even though we were surrounded by commotion and neon and fish and cherries. My senses were completely overwhelmed, and it was completely wonderful.

2. The Seattle Public Library
There is one point of intersection in the Venn diagram of Chris’ low points and Brittney’s high points, and it’s the Seattle Public Library. I could have spent hours reading under those windows, but apparently it’s a different experience when you have a boisterous, beautiful nine-month old strapped to your chest.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Breakfast Tradition

I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes one year ago this week. I was a borderline case, so I didn’t have to take medication or insulin, but I did monitor my blood sugar four times a day and limited carbohydrates and sugars. Thankfully the diabetes went away after Jack was born, but many, many tears were shed at this diagnosis. A breakfast restricted to fifteen carbohydrates is a perfectly fine way to spend a morning devoid of hope, but that’s not what I want from my life.

Sure, a nice omelette and breakfast salad (which exist, btw) is fine, but hollandaise is like falling in love and getting to eat it, as they say. Chris knows this about me, and last year after a difficult Thursday night with Jack, he suggested we go get breakfast together. That morning we had arroz con leche, breakfast salad, ruby red grapefruit, egg white and mushroom omelette, and eggs on an English muffin with bacon and avocado hollandaise. OBVIOUSLY. A week later, I asked if we could go again. Six months later my pancreas and I have really settled in to my favorite, far-from-fifteen-carbs, Friday morning, family tradition.

b perry

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Seeing The Future

"Don't take pictures now! Why are we not eating?! FEED MEEEEEE!!" Takes after his mom. 

It has been incredible to watch Jack figure out the world. He looks down the street when he hears the train coming. He opens his mouth wide when the spoons come out. And, most validating of all, he lifts up his arms when I reach to pick him up. It’s exciting to see him anticipate what will happen next, even if it’s only four or five seconds in the future.

More incredible, perhaps, has been my ability to peer into the future. I have always been a planner, and Jack’s randomness is his most enigmatic quality to me. When he was brand new, friends would ask if we could get together in the next week, but they could have asked if we could get together in 45 years – I didn’t know what the next hour would hold, so the answer would have been the same. But I have gotten so much better. Last week I even went to lunch with our friends. I have somehow learned to find organization in our life together, even though his adorable, single tooth has put his penchant for unpredictability at an all time high.

I have always been a neurotic planner, but finally embracing the unpredictability has let me better enjoy the pieces of the future that I can see. He has learned how to stick his arms through his pajama sleeves, and I have learned that he’ll be asleep around 6:00. He can see that in ten seconds, I’m going to pull him out of his car seat, and I can see when we have thirty minutes left in his car seat before he screams like the entire world is burning in a fiery apocalypse. We’re not fortunetellers or anything, but we’re both getting better.

b perry

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Chris Turns Thirty-Three and a Third

Chris was born on December 27, and his birthday rituals have been immutable for the last twenty-five years. Every year he's in Salt Lake with his family, they ski all day, then there is chocolate cake. I'm a sucker for long-standing traditions, so I love this about him, but it means I've never thrown a birthday party for my darling husband. This April, however, Chris turned thirty-three and a third. Obviously I had to plan something. 

Invitations: I wanted to use this picture of Chris on his first birthday, and there was a separate page with the party details (and limerick!). The backs of each piece had blue and white stripes to match the candle on his first birthday cake. I put everything together in a sleeve with the exact dimensions of a polaroid. Our guest list was basically "Chris' Previous Roommates" so I only made a few, and cutting out those little squares with a box cutter wasn't too bad.

Food: Originally, I wanted to have a narrow, six-foot long chocolate cake, but I would have ended up eating leftover cake every single meal for the rest of my life. That can't happen unless I'm on reality TV. Instead we baked all of Chris' favorite desserts: chocolate cake, brownie bites, blonde brownies, scotcheroos, oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, and very fudgey brownies. The empty plate you see there was for the cookies, which Chris' (truly wonderful) mother baked during the party because a) it made our house smell like grandmotherly love and b) fresh cookies are better than not fresh cookies. 

Chris and I both have a wee bit of social anxiety, so I never think of us as party people, but we actually love doing it. Chris has the best party ideas, and I love making invitations and obsessively planning. Sure, we might be unbearably awkward at the party, but we have a great time in all the preparations.  

b perry

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Parent, Host, and Guidebook

My brother and his wife came to visit us for their Spring break again, and while they were The Best Guests, it can be complicated to host people when you have a baby. I am not The Best at it. For their visit last year my role leaned more towards personal tour guide. This year I was more like the well-meaning travel guidebook with a few outdated maps, some fun ideas to explore on your own, and an exciting new feature where I obsessively text to ask if you’re having a good, safe, non-freezing time.

Perry-free excursions included:
A photo scavenger hunt in SF
Pie in Pescadero
The gardens at Filoli
A Giants/Rockies baseball game
Brunch at Mama’s
Tour of Wunderlich

Perry/Horman excursions included:
Sushi Saturday
The Interceptor from Pirates
Lunch at Google
Breakfast at Buck’s
Hiking Crystal Springs
Hiking in Woodside
Bob’s run for fresh donuts

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Mother's Year Cards

btw, I never knew my ears stuck out from my head until I saw this picture two weeks ago
For my mom’s 2013 Christmas gift, I wanted to mail her a card on every holiday for one year. I’d pick the most beautiful card I could find and include a letter with something I genuinely love about her. But then I thought it was a stupid Christmas gift and I got her a book or something. By Mother’s Day, I decided it was good idea, and I spent the last year mailing a bunch of Mother’s Year Cards.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but this has been the best idea I’ve ever had my entire life. It's such a simple thing, but it has completely changed our relationship in the best way - I guess it's usually the simple things that do that. I only planned on mailing cards for a year, but there’s no way I can stop now. It won’t be for every holiday, but I plan on sending a card on her birthday, my birthday, and Mother’s Day. I realize that’s a bare minimum for what many people send anyway, but it’s a huge improvement for me.

b perry

The card I sent last Mother’s Day
The card I’m sending this Mother’s Day
The best of all the cards, even though I could never send it to my mom
The Mother's Day Card roundups that I look forward to every year