Why yes, that IS a tent in our dining room!

I do recognize that it’s not all that common to have a full-size camping tent set up in your dining room, but that’s exactly what we do have and, oddly enough, we’re rather enjoying it.

TentIt started a week ago when Jen came over to help us “try out” our Christmas tent. We’d planned on taking advantage of a warm day and set it up out on the driveway, but we’d recently done a bit of measuring and realized that with minimal rearranging, we would have sufficient space in our dining room.

This tent is amazing! For once something truly did live up to its advertising promise to set up in minutes. Like, two minutes, maybe less. Of course, we didn’t stake it down in the dining room, nor lay out a groundcloth, so both of those “real-life” additions will stretch the time out a bit, but it’s sure a different world than the big tent my family used to camp with some 45 years ago. That’s a portrait of Daddy showing in the upper-right of the picture above, and I could just feel him shaking his head in disbelief as he watched this tent literally pop up in minutes.

Jen had gifted us with a wonderful airbed that sits up high off the ground — this grandma is not a fan of having to plop down to ground level to sleep, so a normal-height bed made up with normal bed linens is my kind of camping!

We’d figured as long as it was all set up, we might as well sleep on it and try it out, which worked great. Then we figured as long as we could sleep on it we should go ahead and finish up some work we’ve been trying to do in the bedroom so the whole thing has become a bit more of a “fixture” in the dining room than first planned.

Our primary problem is that since we hadn’t expected to leave it up so long, our “rearranging” of the room did not include bringing most of the dining chairs down to the end that now holds the table. But we’ve scrounged around and found alternate chairs enough to use the table, so all is well.

And news on other fronts (what, you don’t think having a tent in the dining room is really news?!?) — well, spring seems to be here in full force, although after the winter-that-wasn’t it seems a trifle redundant to announce the arrival of spring. We did actually get snow earlier in the month, around 6″ or so, but the roads were clear and dry by the day’s end and the snow was gone everywhere but in the shadiest spots within a few days, so it now feels like only a distant memory.

The crocuses and daffodils are out, the apricot trees are in bloom, and the 10-day forecast has no “highs” that are not at least in the 60s, with the next four days predicted to get up into the 70s. Still no guarantees, of course, that we won’t get clobbered by a late storm, but even that wouldn’t seem so bad after all this gorgeous weather.



The littles are wonderful, as always. Despite our lack of snow here in the “lowlands” (we live around 4500′ elevation), the ski resorts higher up have had enough, so Avila has been skiing several times with her dad. She loves it, and what a great time to learn when a fall is no big deal — unlike when I learned, at 16 years old and 5’10” tall, when a fall was quite a bit bigger of a deal all around!

Jen is back at work and enjoying it overall. Having decided to bite the bullet and get up earlier in the morning has paid big dividends in making those morning go more smoothly, now with the two little ones to get into the car along with herself.

ExerSaucer    HappyHenry

Henry was three months old almost a week ago and is definitely beginning to show a lot more personality.  Those oh-so-cute smiles are now clearly in response to interaction with him (as distinct from their frequent but rather random appearance just a few weeks ago) so I know we’ve got lots of fun time ahead watching him grow and change.

So…what’s going on in your world? Let me know in the comments — I love to hear from you!

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4 Responses to Why yes, that IS a tent in our dining room!

  1. Deborah says:

    Hi, Arden!
    Love your sense of decor! Personally, I probably would’ve gotten one in another color but that’s just personal preference! lol

    The littles are looking great! Love Avila’s colors! What a wonderful time to learn skiing. I learned when I was an adult, if you could call it learning. It was a pure sheet of ice. By the next day I was covered in bruises from ankle to hip. At her age she can still bounce!

    Henry is just getting cuter and cuter! I love when they start to show their personalities. So much fun.

    I’d better close this quickly – my battery is down to 2%!!!

    • arden says:

      I *know* — doesn’t everyone do up their dining room with a tent! ;-) I’m so envious of Avila’s learning to ski at this age! And a very fun thing to do with her daddy. I did, indeed, learn to ski at 16 and went skiing each year after that for many years, but would have LOVED to start before I was so long and gangly and the ground was quite so far away. I did have the dubious honor of being brought down the mountain one time on a stretcher, somewhat proving that “falling really is harder when you’re older and bigger.”

      Great, as always, to hear from you!

  2. Gloria & Bill says:

    Thanks for the message and pics. Jany was here for a week, helping us sort and pack what we are taking to Ohio brfore our SCC house goes on the market. After 14 good winters it is time for us to simplify our lifestyle and make peace with northern winters again. Your mention of apricot blooms rings our California bells. How we loved them in Santa Barbara!

    All the best to you and David.

    Bill & Gloia

    • arden says:

      I know you guys have really enjoyed those years spending winters in SCC, but it sure is a lot of work, too, to go back and forth. I’m glad to hear some simplification is on your agenda! Yes, the apricot trees are delightful here — MANY, many of them and they’re among the very first bloomers of spring. Our own tree is on the side of the house so we really don’t even see it blossom out, but our neighbor across the way in front has several of them right on our side, so there’s always this glorious moment of “It’s spring!!” when we look out the window and suddenly realize they’ve burst into flower.

      I have a funny gardening/spring flower story — two years ago I’d gotten ambitious and laid newspaper down, covered the ground in our largish rose bed and covering that with bark mulch. It really did look lovely for a few months, but apparently I hadn’t used quite *enough* paper and eventually the weeds overcame it and filled up the bed again. I despaired a bit, but not enough to pull them all and repeat the process. Then the following early spring I was surprised and delighted to discover that it was a good thing I hadn’t been as successful as I’d hoped with my mulching since that bed is ALSO home to a zillion little grape hyacinths — also one of the early harbingers of spring. I’d forgotten they were there and, of course, had I successfully prevented any growth in there (my original intention) I would have also killed them all off!

      So nice to “see” you and Gloria here. Hugs to all!!

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