26 September 2010

Big Red Football

Yesterday we went to our first Cornell football game. Even though the the Big Red lost (to Yale) we had fun sitting in the stands and cheering for them!

Jonathan decided to take this opportunity to begin teaching Lincoln about football.


Someone sitting on the bench in front of us offered Lincoln his thunder stix. Lincoln happily accepted them.


Watching Cornell football was a little like watching a high school game. Cornell (like all Ivy schools) does not award athletic scholarships. As a result, Cornell does not attract a lot of 5-star football talent and their roster is filled with players who – except for one guy, who got hurt – are not particularly big, strong, fast, quick or athletic. But since we went to a high school with a crappy football team (sorry Kristopher and Benj) it was still fun to watch.

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18 September 2010

Sous Chef

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Lincoln has been very interested in the kitchen lately. He really likes to help and he loves see what’s happening. I can’t be in the kitchen by myself anymore . If I’m in the kitchen, I oftentimes get pushed away from the counter by this incredibly strong little boy, until I either pick him up or enlist Jonathan’s help in removing him. Forget about it if the stand mixer is running. He needs to see what’s going on in there, just ask him. He’s becoming quite the good little helper, though. He loves to stir, add ingredients (salt and pepper are especially fun,) and, of course, taste test. I would not be surprised if this little boy grows up to be a chef one day. For now, though, it’s so fun to have him as my own personal sous chef.

14 September 2010

We ♥ (Upstate) New York

We love being in upstate New York in the fall, so this weekend, we kicked off our last autumn here with a trip to Grisamore Farms to pick some apples.

Before we could get started, though, Lincoln had to let me know there was an airplane flying overhead. DSC_1642

It’s pretty early in the season, so there were only three varieties of apples available, but they were delicious. As a result, I think this was the only apple Lincoln actually picked…

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…He preferred riding in the wagon and snacking. Who can blame him?


With the fruits of our labor (we picked about 16 pounds,) I decided to try my hand at canning. My friend Jenny gave me a lesson on canning tomatoes a few weeks ago and I thought it would be fun to make some applesauce and apple pie filling to have around. I think it worked out well, but the real test will be when I make the first pie.


08 September 2010

Loire à Vélo

We wanted to go somewhere in France we hadn’t been before, so at the very end of our trip we decided to visit the Loire Valley. I had read numerous trip reports about biking along the Loire, and we decided that’s what we wanted to do. We took a (very) early train from Paris and rented our bikes right when we got there. It was a little overcast at first, but it eventually cleared up and was a beautiful day.

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Lincoln did not particularly like his trailer at first, mostly because he was tired. He eventually fell asleep, but was in the most uncomfortable looking position, laying forward on his lap (and Charles.) DSC_1386

The bike route offered some very pleasant scenery.

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Lincoln eventually realized how fun riding in a bike trailer is. All the fun of riding the bike, none of the work.DSC_1395 

We refilled our water bottles at this pump. When we passed it on our way out, I saw people using it, so I knew it worked, but I couldn’t figure out how. Eventually an old lady came out of her house and I asked her about it. (It was a button you push with your foot. I don’t know why I didn’t think of that.)  DSC_1407

Our biking day wasn’t too successful, however, because it turns out we (I) way overestimated how far we could ride in one day. We almost killed ourselves on these bikes and we only made it about half way to our destination. But we did learn some valuable lessons like: Don’t assume it’s short just because it’s measured in kilometers. Always bring your bike shorts, even if they’re buried in the back of a storage shed. Bike trailers are heavy.

After we lived through a night of screaming muscles and a screaming baby in the smallest hotel room known to mankind, we took a shuttle bus to the chateau Chambord. It was a beautiful chateau with a double helix staircase supposedly designed by Leonardo DiVinci.

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It is hard to do this sort of sightseeing with an 18 month old, he was tired and cranky, but wouldn’t take a nap. Finally, after a long fight and some time alone with Daddy, he fell asleep. The problem was, then we had to just sit there while he slept and squander a lot of our chateau time.

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The back of the chateau.


We really enjoyed getting to go on the roof of Chambord. It was beautiful up there and the architecture was amazing!

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This was Francois I’s hunting lodge, so, again, there were “F”s all over the place. Looking up in the center of the double-helix staircase.

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The grounds were also lovely.

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On our shuttle bus we could have gone to two more chateaux, but with Lincoln’s nap, having lunch, and all there was to see at Chambord, that’s the only one we got to do. We took our train back to Paris that evening and the next day we flew home.

Chez Napoleon

We left Lincoln with Brigitte one day so that we could go to the chateau Fontainbleau, just outside of Paris. As Emperor, Napoleon Bonaparte lived primarily at Fontainbleau, so this was on Jonathan’s “must do” list.


The first thing we visited was the Napoleon museum inside the chateau. They had many of his personal belongings, which was interesting. We saw such captivating items as his bathroom/hygiene travel case (impressively big), silverware (golden), chess table, and shoes (small).

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Jonathan needed his picture taken with both busts. He’s a huge fan of Monsieur N.

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Francois I also lived here at some point. We learned a lot about him from our audio guide. For instance, he was a big fan of his first initial, so it is all over the place, and his symbol was a salamander because he thought they could resist fire. We don’t really know much about salamanders, so we can neither confirm, nor deny.


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Jonathan in the throne room.


Napoleon often slept in a camp bed. He had this green one was set up in his office because that’s where he spent most of his time. We saw his actual bedroom, but apparently he rarely slept there. The chapel in the chateau was, also, lovely.

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The gardens of Fontainbleau were beautiful. Unfortunately, it started to rain towards the end of our garden exploration, so we didn’t get to see quite as much as we would have liked. Nevertheless, we were most pleased.

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Finally as we were leaving we climbed up the large horseshoe staircase at the chateau’s entrance.

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