great outdoors

hiking, mama
Originally uploaded by Kristy and Eva.
The past three weekends we've been doing lots of things outdoors (gotta love winters in Texas). We went to Zilker Park with John and Karen and little cousin Sarah and walked over to Shady Grove after, where I enjoyed my first margarita since mid-2004. The following weekend I walked Eva around the whole of Town Lake (well, MoPac to So. 1st, about a 4.5 mile loop) while Larry worked at Austin Java Company. Apparently Eva has mostly lost her desire to fall asleep in the stroller -- the last time she was in it 6 weeks prior she slept when she got tired, but no longer. So after 20 minutes of only being content if I was belting out songs from My Fair Lady (which is one way to turn heads on the hike-and-bike trail, by the way), I put her in the sling and she was asleep before I took more than five steps. The next day we had a picnic with Gram and eyed the cool Zilker playscape -- next winter, Eva, we're so there. And this last weekend we went to the Barton Creek Greenbelt and hiked about with our friend Matt and played with the new telephoto lens. Eva enjoyed the Tibetian carry in her sling (see photo), as taught to us by Wendy (she gets props because Eva loved it so much).

The first lesson is this -- Austin is such an amazing place because it (somewhat paradoxically for a city) connects you with nature through it's wonderful park/trail/greenbelt system. The second lesson is one I have to relearn all the time, but I'm writing it down in hopes that it will stick for once: On various of these days I was feeing down or kind of blah before heading out to commune with nature and whatnot (once even having to force myself to leave the house), and each and every time I felt so renewed and energetic after spending some quality time outside. Not just that, but Eva loved it and always seems more content when we're outside. It works wonders. This should not be so difficult for me to remember.

Oh, and yesterday, I got to hold a 36-hour-old baby (Cassia). This bears mentioning because how often does one get to hold a baby with an age measured in hours? For me, this is the second one ever (after Eva), and I feel quite lucky to have been included in her early days on this planet. Ah, life... it's so amazing.

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