Monday, May 11, 2015

beautiful Bloomington

Last weekend, we took Claire on her first ever extended road trip to Bloomington, Indiana.

Riding in the car is so fun! (This face lasted approximately three seconds...)

Brian and I moved to Bloomington in August of 2009 so that I could start law school there and he could begin work at the business school. It was the place where we first lived together after two years of being in a long distance relationship (ie a huge leap of faith--glad that one worked out for us!), where we ultimately got married, and where we made many good friends. Most of them have moved away at this point, but our close friends Fred and Angie have thankfully stuck around.

We have deep nostalgia for Bloomington (well, I do...Brian doesn't really get nostalgic about much, although he does love it there), and we hadn't been back in two years, so it was a lot of fun to drive around town. Everything has changed! There are a million new apartment buildings, the campus has undergone some serious renovations, and our trusty old Kroger has been extremely fancified (no pictures of that, but there is a FOOD COURT along with a schedule of live music).

Brian and I used to love hiking out at Brown County State Park, which is about 30 minutes outside of Bloomington. It's a beautiful place with sprawling vistas and many (many) rolling hills. We took a little trip out there on Saturday, and Brian carried Claire in a borrowed hiking backpack. It was a fairly short and flat hike, but it's not easy to schlep a 20 pound kid on your back. They were both troopers.

Hiking is serious business

May 2015 (the sun was bright and C was over getting her picture taken)

the same-ish picture, from 2009

That night, we were able to escape for a little while to grab dinner at Upland with Fred and Angie. Upland has ALSO undergone a renovation, so it was fun to see the bigger space and enjoy a lovely evening dining al fresco.

We hadn't been out for dinner without our kid in...many months
The drive home was magically shorter than we anticipated, which was a pleasant surprise. Claire wasn't crazy about riding in her car seat all weekend, so she was DONE by the time we pulled into our apartment complex. Nonetheless, it's nice to know these trips are possible and also fun. Of course, traveling with a kid is a whole new ball game, and we spent a lot of brain space concerning ourselves with where and when she would sleep and eat, how far we could push her schedule, and if she was getting overstimulated. It all worked out fine, though. It's good for all of us to get out of our normal routine for a few days, and trips to visit friends and family are a major part of our life, so we all better get used to it.

A hard-fought nap that thankfully lasted close to two hours

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