***I won’t even lie, here’s a giant disclaimer: long long longlonglong looooooong post ahead. So make sure you refill your beverage of choice before diving into this one…***
I need to let you in on a secret – from the moment I accepted my new position, a nagging fear took hold.
We love Lawrence, we’re near our friends and family there and it’s a great town and well – it’s home. What in the world was I thinking, moving us hundreds of miles from our sweet little Larryville and our loved ones. I sucked it up like a Big Girl, for the most part, crying when alone in the car or shower and dragging the guys all over Lawrence for “One last [fill in the blank]!!!!” notwithstanding.
One last meal at Free State.
One last dip in the Chi O fountain (it was freezing, too, even though the air temp was 90 degrees – sorry about that, Doots).
One last time walking around campus.
One last ice cream downtown.
One last picture with his daycare buds.
One last time visiting a Rocky Mountain Chocolate Obese Bear.
And so on, and so forth, blah blah blah sentimental-cakes. I was super sad to be leaving Lawrence. And then it came time to hop in the truck and go. And we’re here. And waddaya know – we love it.
I don’t know what I was so worried about. Our town home is more like home every day (there is one last box kicking around our living room and that will be basement-bound soon, I have a feeling). We are slowly but surely figuring out our neighborhood, and I was even able to make the several-turns trip home from work/daycare on Friday without using our navigation.
We found our neighborhood Trader Joes, Copps, and ALDI. My sweet sweet Walgreens (home of the best treats, a wide variety of Essie, and Redbox) is literally up at the corner. We explored the Brennans down the street, and dropped a healthy chunk of change on cheeses there.
Pete hasn’t been napping the best, but still zonks out in the car – so we’ve let him nap that way, a toss back to the newborn days, while we talk and drive around checking out nearby neighborhoods. We found new parks, one just a quick walk down the street.
Can I point out? No one seems to care about dandelions here, it is vaguely unsettling.
So it has rained a lot, like A LOT – pretty much every day since we arrived. Sometimes all the live long day. Saturday was overcast but also rain-free, so we took full advantage and explored our new city:
We hit up the Farmer’s Market. The Dane County Farmer’s Market is held Saturday mornings on the capitol square, and is considered one of the best in the country. We were a little worried about it being packed and insane, but we got there and 8am and it was easily manageable. And really amazing: we thought we’d maybe head out there occasionally, but pretty much made up our minds to hit it up every weekend. This time around we scored: fresh asparagus, paper-thin tortillas, eggs, a new succulent for the house, and that famous Stella’s Spicy Cheese Bread (very much worth the accolades; that poor loaf didn’t have a chance we totally mauled it on the drive back home).
We bummed around downtown, watching the March of Dimes march down State St. and taking in the sights. Then we headed towards the lake, and kinda took the wrong way so sorta had to sprint across John Nolen Drive (aka highway 151) all Frogger style, with a toddler in tow, to get to the lake. OMG NEWBS ALERT.
We ran amuk at Monona Terrace – Frank Lloyd Wright’s design for the city, it was built long after his death but held true to his design. If you know me and Scott, you know we love Frank Lloyd Wright. We also hunted down one of his Madison homes and drove past. I tried to get a photo but (1) the place is very unassuming so we almost passed it by, and (2) the owner was outside mowing the lawn, so we couldn’t look like the total stalkers we wanted to be. Maybe we try another day.
We ended our Saturday by having dessert at Ella’s Deli – we used to go here occasionally when I was a kid, and it’s just as awesome now as I remember. Mechanized toys fill every nook and cranny of the place, photos just don’t do it justice. And their desserts aren’t bad, either – Pete got the clown sundae made with blue moon ice cream. After polishing that off, we hit up the carousel before calling it a day.
Sunday it rained like crazy – lots of hail, lightning/thunder, and dark gloomy skies. Boo. Oh well, it meant getting some art on the walls, getting a start on re-stocking our deep freeze with freezer meals, and making the softest chewiest oatmeal raisin cookies around (try ‘em, Smitten Kitchen will never do you wrong).
That’s about it for this week. I think we’re going to like our new home. Just a feeling. Still miss our people, though.