Helen Putnam Regional Park – Petaluma, CA.

Graffiti

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Knowing it was expected to reach 101 degrees in Sacramento, we left early hoping to beat even the smallest bit of heat, and headed toward Helen Putnam Regional Park in Petaluma, California. Before arriving at the park, we stopped to take a few photos of the awesome graffiti behind the Phoenix theater and pick up some sandwiches at the Tea Room Cafe. Unfortunately, the Tea Room Cafe only serves brunch on Sundays, so, we got back into the car and just headed for the park. When we arrived, it was about 80 degrees and the dogs were eager to get out of the car. We chose this park because it looked a bit different than some of the others we had been to recently. Instead of traipsing through trails filled with trees, it had wide-open fields that flowed into the valley. The hike started out with an uphill climb that edged up to a large pond (small lake?). Henry (Le’ Boston) is part Alligator, so I think this was his favorite part of the whole trip. Huck pretended to like the water to fit in, and we headed out. It wasn’t long before we were all roasting in the noonday sun though. Overall, the trails we not too treacherous, though had we went the opposite way I might be saying otherwise. In the end, we sat at a picnic table and cooled ourselves; I am guessing it was in the high 80’s at this point. We loaded up and stopped for sandwiches (again), but this time at Ray’s Deli , which did not disappoint.

Navajo Harem Pants | Two Little Kings

Amador Flower Farm – Amador, CA.

Flowers

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Today we took a trip to the Amador Flower Farm. If you like lilies, this is definitely the place for you. It took us about an hour to make the drive. We arrived a little after 11:00am and the overall atmosphere was quite beautiful, the weather–ideal. We strolled through the rows of flowers, and noticed that there were thousands of varieties of lilies, but little of any other type of flower. I was really hoping to see a few fields of tulips or wild flowers, seeing I am not a big lily-girl, but that was not the case. After taking some photos and having a quiet lunch in the grass, we decided we would head toward a “family fun farm” that we spotted on the way. Once there, we enjoyed some killer lemonade before heading the rest of the way home. Lovely.

Hidden Falls – Auburn, CA.

Hidden Falls

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We decided that today would be a great day to get the dogs and kids and head for a hike. We waited until 10am, when Kennedy predictably would be sleepy, made some bottles, loaded the canine children, and headed out. Hidden falls is located near Auburn, CA and is about an hour drive from Sacramento. The trek to the falls wasn’t too far (1.25m) and downhill almost the whole way there. The falls themselves were pretty-ish, but not spectacular. I would guess if you made the hike during a non-drought time of year, maybe they would be more exciting. The highlight really was simply playing down in the creek with the other 20+ people dying of heat stroke. Kennedy loved it, and the dogs loved it even more. The way back was much less casual. With Kennedy snoozing in the carrier on my chest and an uphill climb all the way back, I was much less enthusiastic. I will definitely return with Nivek and the family for a longer trek when it’s a little cooler. There are a lot longer trails, and I’m guessing lesser-known and more interesting sights to behold (according to the map), so it’s definitely worthy of a return trip.

Doran Regional Park – Bodega Bay, CA.

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A few nights ago, Matt and I decided that since we only have one day off per-week together, and we rarely are able to escape for a vacation, we need to get out of town as often as possible for day trips with the family. While I have lived in Northern California for most of my life, there are many places nearby that I’ve never been, but have always wanted to see. We are going to try to stay within 2-3 hours of Sacramento, and are excited about all of the little adventures to come.

Yesterday we loaded the dogs and the kids up and headed to Doran Regional Park in Bodega Bay. I haven’t been to Bodega Bay since I was a little kid and it was really refreshing to just get to our feet in the sand. We usually go toward the Mendocino area, but at only a 2-hour drive, Bodega Bay was a decent alternative. We picked up some deli sandwiches at Pelican Plaza Grocery & Deli and wandered the beach for a few hours. The beach itself is nothing remarkable, but the surrounding areas were really beautiful, and allowing dogs on the beach is always a win for us.

Breastmilk Donation – The Misadventures of the Boob

Breastmilk. I have very little. So, after trying all of the magical cocktails without success, I gave up trying to incessantly milk myself and turned to breastmilk donation. This decision for me was simple and straightforward, human milk for human babies, but it has led to a lot of interesting questions (amongst other things) from my peers, some of which I thought I’d tackle here.

Q. So, you’re using someone else’s breastmilk to feed your baby? How does that work?
A. Well, breastmilk is good for about a year after it is frozen and some people are blessed with an abundant supply so they have to pump anyhow. Since they pump regularly, they have a supply that that don’t really need, and instead of throwing it away, they offer it to people who need it.

Q. How?
A. There are various online groups (eats for feets, milkshare, human milk for human babies) to name a few. A lot comes from word of mouth.

Q. Does it cost money?
A. No. The breastmilk that costs money has been pasteurized etc… And is generally given to babies with compromised immune systems. Really, as a feminist, the thought of me charging someone for breastmilk makes me feel ill. Not to mention, if there is a fee involved, inevitably someone out there will try to exploit it and sell you cows milk, not caring that there is someone on the other end who will suffer greatly. I always offer to cover the cost of storage bags, but beyond that, there is no fee. Women help women, isn’t that important?

Q. People really do this?!
A. Yes. And it had been going on for a loooong time. It’s not weird, it’s just not talked about much.

Q. Don’t you think that’s gross?
A. No. I think it’s gross that you think it’s gross. I mean, you drink the milk from a cow to which you know is pumped full of god knows what and you think it’s weird I feed my human baby, human milk. Least I can ask them what drugs they’re on.

Q. How do you know that the person isn’t on drugs, or something?
A. I don’t. Obviously, if I met someone who looked like a “dope fiend”, I would use better judgment but… Really people… Do you think women who care enough to seek out breastmilk donation boards are going to do so with malicious intent? A lot of these woman have been so very kind and compassionate, it’s very uplifting. I mean, I could ask for blood tests and things, but truly, I would argue that a variety of breastmilk donors would only strengthen her immune system, not the other way around.

I think that’s the gist of just about every conversation I’ve had around it. I wouldn’t have posted this except I realize when I post on Facebook, or “like” something… I always get questions. With that said, I’m just about out and stressing over it. So, if you have any, or know someone, please contact me. It really does mean a lot to me. Somehow I will find a way to pay it forward, but for now I am going to just feel blessed by those who have reached out to me and helped me thus far.