Our Bearaffe Takes on the Snow

There’s a blizzard in Texas! Well, not really, but we got a lot of snow on Friday. And by “a lot” I mean a few inches.

I’m sure anyone in the Boston area¬†would like to punch me in the face for making a big deal about a few inches, huh? I wouldn’t blame you if you did. Plus, I’d at least have enough snow to make a fresh ice pack to put on my face to reduce the swelling. ūüôā

This week, we’ve had 2 other mornings that started with snow but quickly melted into mush. Nothing I wanted to let Avery roam around in. But Friday’s snow was an all day event and covered the ground in a beautiful white sea¬†of fluffy snow.

Going Mom was adamant that I take good pictures of Avery in her first snow since you never know how long it will be until it happens again around here. Technically, this wasn’t her first snow, but it was the first time she got to walk around in it and really get the feel of what it’s like.

After she had her breakfast and I had a couple cups of my cold brew coffee, it was time to “bear” the snow. You’ll get the quotes soon.

cold brew coffee

Our best cold weather outfit for Avery is a pink full-body suit that resembles a bear cub with a hood that has little ears attached. I’ve posted about it several times, and she even had a dark purple one that she outgrew last year.

Lots of room to grow in here!
Lots of room to grow in here!

Wow, time sure does fly! Wouldn’t squeeze her in that suit if we tried now!

Her new suit is a little big on her, but she seems content with wearing it.

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Well, sometimes. But since she would be out in the cold walking around in snow, she needed more than the hood that just falls off of her. She need an upgrade to a beanie, a giraffe beanie!

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Ummm, look up for the camera, Avery. Please?

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Much better. Now the title of the post should make more sense. Bear + Giraffe = Bearaffe and she (it?) is ready to take on the snow!

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She started off with confidence despite the snow having her surrounded. After analyzing the situation, she felt it would be best to move around to better assess the situation.

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Okay, gaining more confidence. Can’t stop moving, must keep the snow guessing!

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Yep, feeling really good at this point. I’m¬†just “walking all over” the snow; literally and figuratively.

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Oh, hi there, dad, I thought you told me to be careful. What’s there to be careful about? I’m already a snow pro!

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See? Just smilin’ in the snow. I can do anything and go anywhere!

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Like all the way in our neighbors’ yard. Look at me just rompin’ and stompin’ like a real bear…

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OOoomph! Ummm, just wanted to see what this stuff tastes like, I meant to do that.

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I’m good, the snow isn’t, so I won’t do that again. Time for more exploring! So pretty and fun to walk all ov….

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Gahhhh, this is annoying…..and cold! Kinda starting to not like this stupid snow.

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Okay, I’m up by my face still feels cold. What gives?

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Get it off, get it off!

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Thanks, Dad. How about next time you NOT take pictures and just help me right away?!

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I’m feeling lost. Where am I? Is that silver thing another person?

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That’s it, I’m done. I’m going to get up and walk my bear-self back inside. Go ahead, just keep taking pictures and laugh.

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My face is so cold, but also burns. What does that mean?

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Please, just stop with the pics and take me inside!!

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Why did you take me inside? I was just “warming up” out there! Take me ba…

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What the crap are you giving me my kettlebell for? This isn’t what I wanted! Just listen to …..oh? Music? I should dance?

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Snow, what snow? I love kettlebell dancing!

And that’s pretty much how our snow experience went down on Friday. Avery loves being outdoors, so anytime I take her in, she starts crying, but it didn’t take her long to turn happy and playful again. I’m sure being warm and dry helped!

The Dad Network

Do you remember your kids’ first snow or have they not experienced it yet?

If they have, how do they like it? You? I’m not a fan of the cold at all, but if it snows, I enjoy it while it lasts.

Easy Homemade Cold Brew Coffee Recipe

Remember my post from yesterday where I mentioned I was in the process of making cold brew coffee? Well, if not, I did. I tried some the next day and love it, and even have more brewing as we speak you read this. Since I like to share (sometimes) good things, I’ll tell¬†you this super easy¬†cold brew coffee recipe to try for yourself.

Traditionally, to make cold/iced coffee, it’s brewed hot and served over ice or refrigerated to cool it down. But cold brew coffee, as the name implies, is never heated and brewed entirely with cold or lukewarm water over¬†several hours. With this method, you lose most of the acidity/bitterness that results from brewing¬†with hot water, which gives you a¬†smooth, highly enjoyable, and bitter-free coffee that is wonderful on its own or with a bit of milk.

Cold Brew Coffee

Using a French Press makes this simple recipe even easier. If you don’t have one, don’t fret, it’s still easy as ever and wayyyyy worth it. Unless you don’t like coffee, which is weird and unheard of in the parenting community. What, do you have natural energy? Well, coffee is natural, so there!

Sorry, now where was I? Oh yes, coffee, cold brew, homemade…recipe. Okay, I’m good, here you go.

Cold Brew Coffee

Easy Homemade Cold Brew Coffee

Ingredients: (Yields 4 Cups of Concentrated Coffee)

  • 1 Cup Coarsely Ground Coffee
  • 4 Cups Good Quality Filtered Water

Directions:

  1. Add coarsely ground coffee to a large bowl or French Press.

  2. Pour in your cold water and stir to mix everything together.

  3. Cover and refrigerate 12 – 24 hours.

  4. After sitting/brewing for 12 – 24 hours, strain your coffee.

    1. If you used a French press, just press the lid down to strain the coffee and pour it into a separate, sealable container. Store in the fridge until ready to use.
    2. If you used a bowl, get a separate bowl and place a strainer lined with a coffee filter or cheesecloth on top of it .  Pour the coffee and grounds into the cheesecloth and let sit until the liquid has passed through.  Remove the strainer with filter or cheesecloth and serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  5. Once strained, you now have coffee concentrate. Make sure to dilute it based on how strong or light you want it. I like it fairly strong and find 2:1 coffee/water ratio works best.

  6. Add milk and/or sweetener (I like stevia) if you want, but please try it alone before adding anything. The cold brew method makes it a lot smoother and even sweeter.

For the best results, use high quality coffee beans. Probably obvious, but Folgers or Maxwell House just won’t cut it……ever. Also, if you’re able, buy your beans whole and don’t grind them until you are ready to start. Make sure the grind is coarse and not fine. Using finely ground coffee will not give you good results with the cold brewing method!

For those of you that aren’t a fan of coffee, you might end up loving the cold brew method since¬†it’s not as bitter as the traditional method of brewing. Give it a shot and let me know what you think.

Have you ever tried cold brew coffee?

Have you made it at home or plan on making it now?

Indoor Rowing With a Toddler & Cold Brew Coffee

Is there something you’ve wanted for years but haven’t been able to get it for some reason? Okay, fine, there’s probably more than just something¬†and more like a lot of things. But for me, one of them was an ergometer so I could enjoy indoor rowing at home.

After many many years of blah-blahing to Going Mom about how I want one, I finally earned enough points on my Amazon card to pull the trigger; or should it be rigger? ūüôā Just a little rowing joke for you, you’re welcome. And of course I had to share my purchase on Facebook, but only because Amazon asked me to after I hit “submit payment”.

Rower Purchase Shared on FB

It finally came this past Tuesday and I quickly worked on putting it together. With my favorite little helper, of course.

Helping Daddy Put Together Rower

Think something’s too easy for you? Throw in a toddler or two and that should solve your issue; instant increase in difficulty! But we love them! Avery was super interested in everything I had out and thought everything was up for grabs.

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What if I push this button?

 

Thankfully Kelley was able to keep Avery at bay long enough for me to have it assembled and ready to test before it was too late. I skipped the usual walk (it was freakin’ cold outside anyway), and opted to do a 5k row which took just under 20 minutes. Ahhh, I love it!

But there is one thing that’s an issue…..Avery. She’ll walk right into my arms as they’re pulling back which results in me knocking her over. Poor girl, she just laughs and thinks I’m playing with her. It’s sad, really.

Again, thanks to my wife holding Avery back as best as she could, the first row went mostly okay. But the next day, when Kelley was at work, I wanted to try for another 5k. After Avery finished….umm, whatever she was doing with it…..

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I’m gonna have to work with her on how to properly use equipment.

Anyway, I finally got to it with Avery circling me like a shark and I was a surfer with an open wound. Then she went in for the kill and put her hand on the railing as I was pushing back, and oops! Avery’s shark fin hand got hit by the rolling seat.

The good thing is that I slowed down just before since she moved behind me, but the bad this is that I hurt her precious little hand and she was screaming to let me know. I held her, for a while, but the screaming ensued. I was finally able to set her down and finish my workout (the hand incident happened only 2 minutes into it) and she kept her distance the remainder of the time.

I’d like to think she now knows better, but something tells me she’s still too intrigued by the machine to keep away. You could call it a hunch, but she makes it apparent as well. Especially when I said “raise your hand if you still want to get close to the rower” and she responded with….

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Yeah, so there’s that.

My foot is still not healed from when I fractured it this summer¬†since I started running on it before it was fully recovered. Call me stubborn, call me dumb, call me whatever, but I’m hoping this rower will keep me from running while still giving me that tired, sweaty workout I seem to crave. Time will tell, and then I’ll tell you here.

In the meantime, I have this beautiful French Press full of black gold (not oil, coffee!!!) in our fridge right now in an attempt at my first homemade cold brew coffee.

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I’m letting it steep for 24 hours and then I’ll press and strain the highly concentrated coffee into another glass. I’m sure I’ll try some before diluting. You know, just to “test” it at full strength. Then I’ll dilute in a 2:1 coffee to water ratio.

Maybe some Pyure Sweet Stevia or SweetLeaf English Toffee Liquid Stevia for something extra fancy and tasty, but otherwise, I’ll enjoy it cold and black. I’ll let you know how it goes soon. Maybe it’ll fuel another 5k row, or even 10k if Avery keeps her little hands off the rail!

Have you ever used an indoor rower (i.e. ergometer)?

Ever make your own cold brew or try some already made before?