Having friends in town for the weekend has given us just the perfect excuse to take a break from the beige-ification going on around here. One thing I love about having visitors is that it also provides the perfect excuse to be a tourist in your own town. In the 5 years that we have lived here we've seen a lot. However, there is so much that Tim has seen without me - for the past 4 years I've worked at least one weekend day every week. Now I'm catching up.
Normally, while the rest of the country is baking, our little city is blessed by mild temperatures and ocean winds all summer long but not yesterday. Yesterday was an unseasonably hot day in the Bay Area. So what did we do? We filled our stainless steel water containers with water, slathered on sunscreen and took our guests on the ferry from Tiburon to Angel Island. This is where it gets crazy. We then embarked on a 4 mile hike to the top of Mt. Livermore (only a 1500-ish foot elevation change). Yes, an 8 month pregnant lady, a 3-year-old, a 13-year-old and 2 regular adults started optimistically up the mountain.
Tim kept promising that "we're almost there" and "it's just around the next switchback" but all that seemed to await us was more sun exposure and a mild climb. The last time he did this hike he was with his marathoner friend and they were passively competitive with each other meaning they basically raced to the top. His memory might have been a little skewed. The elevation and the distance were fine, actually. It was just so darn hot!
We all made it to the top. Even me, which I can hardly believe. The views at the top are nice - panoramic scenes of the whole bay.
The flies up there were crazy bad though so I went down a few feet and sat on the bench with Heather. Don't I look happy? And about eleventy billion years pregnant?
You know who was the real trooper? Ada. That little girl ran up and down the trail stopping to point things out to us and occasionally throw a rock into the brush. She tripped over some tree roots in the ground a couple of times but popped back up saying, "I'm OK!" She did insist that her dad carry her about 65% of the way and bless his heart he did it without complaint or annoyance. We are encouraged that our best hiking days lay still ahead of us. We've been out of the circuit for a while since Ada outgrew the Kelty we used to put her in. We've missed it terribly and have been dying to get back on the trails.
Another boat ride, a snack, a shower and a nap later we all felt human enough again.
Just in time for Fathers Day.
I let Tim sleep in until almost 10 and when he woke up he got a handmade card from Ada and a coffee mug she made (almost) all by herself at the pottery studio. Then I took my bestie down to the salon and got my toes painted bright turquoise just because I thought Ada would like it. I'll do this more often because she has been obsessed with my toes all day! Sadly, this activity wore me out and I had to come home to take a 2 hour nap. I'm still pretty darn tired from yesterday.
Tim's a great dad and Ada thinks he is the greatest person to ever live. In the past couple of weeks a prominent daddy's girl streak has surfaced. She begs for his attention, thriving when she gets it and crumbling to pieces when she doesn't. The other day he was laying on the bed reading Sports Illustrated and she was working so hard to get his attention. After about 30 seconds of standing next to the head of the bed, being sweet and being ignored she folded her arms on the edge of the bed, buried her face and cried!
I said, "Wow, babe. You're powerful." To which Tim looked up to see his daughter in a dejected, sobbing heap next to him. After I told him what happened, because apparently he was too absorbed for any of this to register, he scooped her up and made it all better. They read Sports Illustrated together.
I love these moments.
I'm very lucky to have a married and had children with a man who understands how important he is to his children and who takes that role very seriously. However, I would like to point out that in the morning she comes straight to me for cuddling and gentle waking because she loves her mommy too. I'm pretty sure this just makes Ada and I both the luckiest girls around.