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December 21, 2002
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three years ago
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The Holiday Walk

10:22 pm: We had a great evening, tonight. Jet had a pretty good night, actually, only up three times, and one was just an hour after going down and the other two were at 4 and 6 in the morning, so they were just anticipatory to waking up. Both John and I got a good stretch of sleep in between with the two of us trading off as needed.

We're both pretty sleep deprived, still, though, and I'm glad the holidays are coming and we might have some chance of catching up. John got up at 7, when Jet finally woke up for real, and I got to sleep in then. When I did get up, John told me that Jet had eaten nearly a whole grapefruit and showed no signs of a problem. He also ate a bit of banana, some cereal, and a few other things. Wow.

I had some shredded wheat, the other half of a grapefruit, and some chai. Then we headed out to some toy stores to get Jet some presents from us. Everyone else had given him some great presents, so it was our turn.

We hit one pretty cool toy store, and then a consignment shop that made their own, very sturdy, but very sharp edged chairs. We didn't get that, but we did find a swiveling plastic Playskool chair that was being resold for only three bucks. I also got Jet a pair of pajamas that had a top and bottom and were the waffle weave that's nice and warm. Being sick, he went through so many pajamas, it was obvious that it would be useful to have just one more. So we got that, too. At both shops, Jet got to play and look at toys, and run around.

We then stocked up at the local Albertson's, and Jet ran around some more, but eventually was okay with being put into the cart's seat. He was starting to get pretty tired, but not nearly as exhausted as he had been yesterday.

Next door to the grocery store was a new Chinese/Vietnamese restaurant, Golden Rice. They sounded okay, so we went there and had their lunch specials. I got one of their rice noodles bowls with the very traditional Vietnamese grilled meats over rice noodles and lots of fresh, crisp vegetables mixed in. There was a bowl of sweet, spicy, and salty sauce to pour over it and I enjoyed it a lot. John got a beef dish, and Jet ate some of the brown rice with scrambled egg that came with it. It was a pretty tasty quick fried rice. I could see why it was called golden rice, too, as the egg colored it nicely.

Jet ate a little, and then ran around the place, happy as a clam. He just raced around empty tables, smiled at everyone there, and then shied away when someone tried to get him to come to them. But he had a great time crawling under tables, over chairs, and basically being his normal, healthy self. I was very glad of that.

When we finally went home, he went immediately to sleep in the car. He napped for exactly an hour and a half, and I napped with him. However, when he woke up there was no way on earth that I could wake up, too. John took him and I was very glad of it. I slept two hours straight and felt quite a bit more human afterwards.

Whew.

When I got up, John talked with me about going to Longmont for the Holiday Walk. In the park next to the Boulder County Fairgrounds, the city was setting up carolers, chestnut BBQ stations, hot chocolate, cider, and bonfires. It was all along a walking path, with luminarias lighting the way. It was open from 5-8, and we thought it would be cool to go and see what there was to see.

We called a few folks and no one else could make it. The high today was 38, and the low was supposed to be in the teens. I was afraid that we were just going to freeze our buns off. So we bundled up and bundled Jet up. I also brought blankets for his stroller, and one the way over, he fell asleep. We got out when we parked at the fairgrounds, and tucked Jet into the blanket lined stroller, and covered him up thoroughly. He was just a little blanket bundle. There were people all around us, and the majority of them were coming back to the parking lot and there were a bunch of blanket bundles in strollers as well. So I was very glad that I'd brought the extra blankets.

Jet slept quite well for the first chunk of the walk. We got around one of the ponds in the park to hit the first area, which had a good bon fire going. There were not hot drinks, but there were carolers and there were a couple of folks anxiously roasting chestnuts over coals. The nuts were being doused with margarine, and tentatively tossed around in the grease a good eight inches over the coals!! They were completely raw when they came off. I was mildly disappointed that the folks doing it were so completely without clue as to how to do it.

Ah well.

But the fire was nice, and there was a small grove of trees in red lights. There was also a path with lumiarias lit by glow sticks, and we followed that further down. It was a long, cold walk to the second station, but the wind wasn't blowing too hard, so it was just cold, not bone-gnawing frigid. I was glad of that. The second station had some guys that were more knowledgeable, and they had the nuts right on the grill and they weren't serving them until they were splitting themselves open. So they were actually done.

Jet woke up at the second station to stare at the fire. When he was good and awake, we took him out of the stroller and let him walk. He walked all the way to the end of the trail. I was pretty impressed by that. He checked out the bags with glow sticks and seemed to like finding them along the way. He was quite the trooper and seemed to enjoy following all the other people. What was coolest about doing this with Jet was that he enjoyed every new discovery and it really was all new for him and with him.

When we got there, I joined the huge line for hot drinks. It turned out that there was also food. They had burgers, hot dogs, ad chile and other items to go with the food. The line was pretty long, so John and Jet went off to discover what else was there. There was a Frosty the Snowman that gave Jet a piece of candy, and a lit, heated tent with tables. They wandered around there for a while, and joined me back in the line as we headed towards the door. Just as we got there a lady came out with hot chocolate, and we got that. John went in to get a few cookies, and since we'd eaten dinner before leaving, we didn't stay for the food.

Instead, we headed to the bonfire, and Jet got to clutch his hot chocolate in one bare hand while watching the fire with complete fascination. He loved it. We stood there and finished our drinks, warmed up, and headed back. It was beautiful out there. The fire was contained in a metal cage, but embers strayed towards the dry grass, the pond, and us. Jet loved watching them go by. The sky was clear, and the moon was near full and silver bright. The moon lighted the few clouds. It was 14 degrees out, but no one seemed to mind. It was pretty still out, and without much humidity in the air, the cold didn't bite the way it can. Everyone that saw Jet in his fuzzy coat with the ears remarked at how cute he was. Hee.

Jet also discovered that his mitten hands were great for waving at folks. He waved enthusiastically at a guy in a Grinch outfit, and even high-5'ed the guy. Jet did, however, look a bit dubious about getting any nearer to him.

When we headed back, Jet checked out every bag on the way back to the previous station. He did walk the whole way and warmed himself by that fire before asking to get back into the stroller. He pulled the blankets close, and seemed perfectly content to be pushed. We walked back to the car and met very, very few people as we went out. When we'd gone in, there was a sea of people coming out. I guess folks went there to eat dinner, which we hadn't known was supplied. We even heard a lot of stories about how unhappy some people were about the long wait for what was essentially free food, so I was glad we hadn't gone in expecting to be fed.

After getting to the car, we headed over to Cafe Luna. I hadn't really known if they were going to be open; but it turned out that they were open until 10! They had a musician playing in the main room, and we went into the library area, so that Jet could stomp around, talk, and play without interrupting anything. They even found crayons for him to draw with, and he happily colored and drank his warm milk while we drank our hot drinks and shared a brownie. I even got to read for a little bit.

Thinking about it, Jet occupies himself pretty well, now, if I'm around. I could probably read more than I used to, if he's busy and I just want to be semi-present. I should get more books out to read.

We wound down quite well there, and headed home. Jet had a tiny mint patty and his warm milk to occupy him on the way home, and we talked about lights, about having the light in the back on while getting home, and he stayed awake. He was pretty tired, though, and after a bit more milk and getting changed into his pajamas, he went to sleep quite easily when I nursed him. I'm glad of that.

John took advantage of it and went right to bed. My two hour nap made it a bit iffier for me, so I wanted to do this before trying to go to sleep. I really need to get caught up on my public journal and wrap it up for the year in order to get my yearly wrap up letter written. There's a lot of really small stuff this year, mostly just learning how to live with Jet in our lives.

I should have some time in the next few weeks to just do that. I'll hope. I am glad that Jet's much better today, and that we don't have to worry about him throwing up all the way through to Christmas. I'd like for us to just stay well. We'll see.

Good night

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