Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Gate Comes Down

Big progress to report in the Mayhew household! This afternoon, Craig removed the baby gate at the top of the main stairs (the stairs leading onto the main level of the townhouse). The wooden structure, hand-designed/built by a neighbor to keep their child from tumbling down into the basement, has been a mainstay until quite recently.

Rory is almost 4.5, and Fiona is coming up on 3, and the gate started seeming superfluous. Moreover, it started becoming annoying - just another thing to thwart me from easily bringing groceries up to the kitchen.

The cats - and the girls - barely know what to do with the extra space.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The New Subaru

Here we have the newest Mayhew family member (I am talking about the car, in case that wasn't clear). It is a 2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium, charcoal gray, 6-speed manual. It has a sunroof and a 6-disc CD changer (so the girls and I can both have music queued up and ready to go). I am in heaven. I love it. I love driving a stick again (as crazy as that sounds), and the car has plenty of room for the family and all our accoutrement.

Fiona was with me throughout the entire buying process (much of which is quite boring). I took this picture so in seven years - when she is almost ten years old - we can look back and enjoy the fact that I have had the same car ALL that time.

I am just so tickled with how well the car drives. I think its name is going to be Nigel, but I will formally decide after driving to Connecticut for Thanksgiving.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Bye Bye Minivan

This morning, I sold my Honda minivan to Carmax. It served me very well during the early years of the girls' lives... when the sliding doors were crucial to actually *getting* them into the car; when the back space held two strollers (one single, one double); when car storage was critical in terms of holding the various stuff that mothers schlep (pack and plays, diapers, you name it).

But those days are behind us, and I never really loved the car. I felt very conspicuous in it... like a MINIVAN driver. Plus, it was my first automatic, and I found it very confusing not to reach for the clutch. Plus, it weighed 4500 lbs and was difficult (for me) to stop. Plus, we only have two kids AND much less stuff to drag around now that they're older. Plus...well, let's just say I never really loved the car.

Wait - there IS another plus. I needed to lower my car payment. Dramatically. And how.

So today I returned to land of Subaru. I bought a 2010 Subaru Outback, 6-speed manual. My car lives in South Carolina at the moment, and is being driven to Virginia early next week. In the meantime, I have a loaner (same breed, but an automatic) to get me by.

I am thrilled to have lowered my payments, and I feel less horrible to the environment at the same time. This car has better mileage, and weighs more than a thousand pounds less. Nice.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween 2009

Happy Halloween 2009! The girls picked out their costumes months ago - Captain Hook for Rory and the ever-stalking crocodile for Fiona - and they were VERY ready for trick or treating. It was raining here in Herndon, but a little precipitation wasn't going to stop us! Umbrella-free and determined, we went through our entire neighborhood and had a blast. The girls' candy bags got a bit heavy toward the end, and I was left carrying the loot - and what a pile of loot they got. Considering they don't eat candy all that often, I figure it will take them almost until *next* Halloween to finish it off.

Two girls hugging a wacky pumpkin

Captain Hook & the Fearsome Crocodile (tick tock, tick tock!!)

Dadbot & his girls

Chowing down on pirate booty in the back of the car

Happy sugar-laden beasts!