Door and Names

Well, this is it.  The end of an era.  I’m closing up shop here at RR – I’ve been here almost 4 years… but it’s time to move onto the next chapter.

They say, when one door closes, another opens.  And that is so true.  With my divorce, a door closed – a lot ended, and with that was using my married name.  It took months of deliberation, whether I wanted to keep my married name, or go back to my maiden name (I had to decide before the divorce was finalized).  It was mostly a tug of war between having the same last name as my son, and associating with a married name I wasn’t married to anymore.  In the end, I decided to go back to my roots, and use my maiden name.  It’s just a name right?  I don’t think it’ll affect Avery in any negative ways, having a different last name than me.  Plus, it’s sooo nice to be back where I grew up and have the name everyone here knew me as.

Speaking of which, that’s one door that opened right up – moving back to Vermont.  It’s been nothing short of amazing, moving back home and having friends and family here to support us, and spend time with.  Avery is growing into such a wonderful little boy, and I know much of it is because of all this fresh air, outdoor activity, and presence of family and friends.  And in just a few months, we’ll be able to move into our forever home, a place Avery will always call home and grow up in, creating so many memories – something I wouldn’t have been able to give Avery back in Boston.

So, it’s only fitting, we start this new life in Vermont with a new blog – I know we’ve been up here a year already, but we’ve been in ‘limbo’ for a while now, first living in an apartment in Boston during the divorce – not knowing if we could move to Vermont, and then we moved, but we’ve been living the past year with my parents so I could save money.  With buying the house, and finally having a direction and putting down roots, we’re finally moving out of this limbo state and getting a fresh start.

As you know, I always sign my posts ‘<3 Meghan’, so that’s where the idea came from… leaving the door open for me to write about everything and anything happening in our crazy little life here in Vermont.  No worries, all my old posts and pictures are there too.  We’re not erasing any memories in the past, just building on them under a new roof 🙂

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Our next chapter begins with our latest adventure….camping last weekend.  Check it out on the new blog.

❤ Meghan

We Moved!….kinda.

No no no… hold your horses.  We haven’t moved into the new house just yet.  We have, however, moved in this crazy world wide web… to a new blog!

It’s been my intention, and goal (cuz I don’t have enough of those floating around), to change the name of my blog for a while now.  After the divorce a year ago, and changing my name back to my maiden name (I’m a Valyou again!), I felt it only fitting to switch the blog to reflect my fresh new start.  Now, the problem with switching to a new blog means lots of work.  When you have a blog setup, it’s really easy to post – just click a button, type, and publish it.  Starting a whole new one took a little more time…

First, I had to think of a name for the blog.  This only took me, oh… say… a year!  I brainstormed and thought of a bunch of good ones, then a couple days later, I would look at them and re-think it again, not happy with the final ‘name.’  It’s really hard to come up with a blog name that encompasses everything I write about.  I don’t like claiming a stereotype either, like ‘BloggingMomRunner’, because I write about more than that, and those three words don’t define me.  I wear so many hats, as a Mom, a SINGLE Mom, a Divorced Mom, a daughter and friend and sister, a career woman, a runner, a country girl turned city girl turned country girl again, a soon-to-be homeowner, etc…

So, after much deliberation, and a light bulb (thanks to my dear friend, Kate), I chose a new blog name – a new identity that would encompass all I write about.  Now, that was just the start of this new adventure (aka challenge, aka another thing to cram into my already full day of working 8 hours and spending time with my son and family, but why not? because it’ll be worth it in the long run).  I had an idea and plan – I just had to make it happen.  This was the even harder part.  I enlisted the help of my go-to computer and website guru (Thanks, Phil), and with much help from him, and a few days of skipping workouts to find the time to (whoops, sorry Jarrod – I’ll get my 100 squats in today, I promise!), my new website was born!  I transferred everything from the old blog over, and still have lots of formatting glitches to fix and personalize it a bit more, but it’s live, and before I push the off button on this site, I’ll give everyone a bit of time to get used to going to the new site… maybe a couple weeks?


Let me know what you think…. and HAPPY FRIDAY!


Work Hard, Play Hard

Happy Tuesday!  Crazy that the weekend has already come and gone.  The summer months sure do fly by – especially when we have fun filled weekends like this past one.

Saturday morning we spent cutting, splitting, and stacking wood.  Like last year, my parents had wood delivered, and they split it with the neighbors.


My parents have a wood stove that heats the house in the winter, so getting wood ordered like this and cutting it themselves is kinda a part of country life up here.  The whole process requires cutting the logs into managable sized pieces, splitting them with the wood splitter (Dad borrowed it from his brother), and stacking it.


Avery jumped right in this year and wanted to help.  He tried the wood splitter, but after a go at it, we fell into a routine.  Dad cut the wood with his chainsaw, we picked it up and carried it to the splitter…


Avery is all about being strong like Grampy, so he was in charge of getting the smaller pieces.


Mom and Dad split it and put it into the tractor trailer.  Avery filled his up himself.  And he was all equipped for the work day too, his Mickey Mouse work gloves, earmuffs, and sunglasses for eye protection.


When the tractor was full, Avery and Grampy would drive it over to the wood shed behind the house, dump it, and go back for another load.


In the meantime, I would stack the wood.  Avery helped for a while, but then he made a few runs himself with his tractor, getting wood and bringing it around to me.

Avery was loving it and after a while he took a break and started sweeping the garage – such a good little helper!  After three hours of this (and many water and popsicle breaks for Avery), we were whipped.


We cleaned up and headed out to the islands. (‘The Islands’ are the islands in Lake Champlain) to a birthday party for Avery’s second cousins.  On our way, we stopped to fish on the causeway bridge.IMG_6870

I caught two, Grampy one, and Avery struck out.  He had fun picking out worms and trying to snag the fish when the bit.

At the party, Avery had fun playing with his cousins.  They had a water balloon fight…IMG_6875

And they played with the new sprinkler we got as a gift.  Avery watched for a little, but then he jumped right in.  You can see the birthday girl in the pink tutu…IMG_6882I don’t know where it came from but at one point, Avery had a cute shield:


We had food and cake and the birthday girl opened lots of fun presents.  The kiddos had squirt guns out and played with balls and badminton for a while – then it was time to head home.  On our way, we stopped for ‘Green Chocolate Ice Cream’, as Avery calls it.  (aka Mint Chocolate Chip)


This was the small size!  Avery licked up all the sprinkles and then he was done with it… one minute he was eating…IMG_6889

Then he handed it off to me (more squats for me to do later!) and in a few minutes, he was OUT.


It was perfect timing too, because it was 7pm, and on weekends since Avery doesn’t nap, I try to get him to bed by 7pm, so he can sleep 12 hours straight.  He slept until 8am the next morning.

Sunday morning we geared up and Avery, Mimi, and I went kayaking on Arrowhead lake.  It was such a nice day out.  We paddled around for hours and spotted geese families with their babies swimming and eating, turtles sunning on logs, a red winged black bird pestering a blue heron, a fish jump, a male and female duck, and Avery picked some really big lily pads.

We took a jump in Uncle Michael eyes pool (burr!) and after dinner, Avery went thru the notch with Mimi and Grampy for some rock climbing… IMG_6898

And more ice cream…IMG_6899

Avery passed out on the way home again.  Such a fun filled weekend!!!

We’re off camping this coming weekend, so I’ll have lots more pictures and stories to share when we come back.  And this weekend it’s officially Summer!  Once this rain finally stops, maybe it’ll feel like it!

❤ Meghan