Last week I had a first -
I flew alone with my two girls.
(hazel is 2 yrs 10 months. felix is 1 yr 5 months old)
O’hare to Miami.
I treated the adventure like my own personal leg of The Amazing Race. (Physical Prowess, Mental Agility, Master negotiation skillz requred)
To win all I had to do was…
Get the kids to Miami,
While bothering the fewest number of people along the way.
The girls were great.
Or, as great as a 1 and 2 year old kept stationary for several hours can be…
We had a few minor mishaps before the plane took off…Hazel accidentally clotheslined her face on the ledge of the payphone bank. Fee marched through security and was perfectly keen to keep on going. I spilled my bursting-at-the-seams backpack under the seat in front of me. But we soldiered on
Time on Plane: 3:25 minutes.
Hazel watched movies. plural. We got one of those 1990’s cd cases and loaded it with their dvds - too many choices for my toddler because she wanted to watch them all (and she did…in 10 minute increments before insisting she needed to change the movie - and that she could do it all by herself.)
Felix sat perched on my lap for the duration of the flight. I kept the squirms at bay by pulling out a new treat/activity for her every 15 mins (little things like a calculator, a shoestring, a page of stickers). The two diversions that held her attention the longest: 1. Putting the crayons into the box and 2. Taking them out.
Our journey to Miami was one part obstacle course (with Z & Fee standing in for the alligators I would have to wrestle)…And part one part team bonding (with the girls being my MVPs, of course).
I was proud of them for being great little travelers….and I’ve got to say, our journey was fun.
Even so, by the time I got off the plane, I was a mess - cocked ponytail, smudged eye-makeup, stickers stuck all over my clothes. The rugrats wore me out….but I lit up (as did my girls) the instant we saw Grandma A waiting for us….with her camera…on the other side of security.
Let the vacation begin!
I am not what you might call a DIY’er. In fact, my philosphy on DIY projects can be summed up in 2 words: Let’s Not.
However, my aversion to crafts is apparently outweighed by my desire for Hazel to be super-pumped about the Valentine’s Day cards she is going to hand out in class on Friday. I figured the best way to get toddler buy-in was to make a family-project out of it. And so:
Technicolor Dream Bookmarks!
a list of fairly obvious steps:
1. We hijacked paint cards in varying shades of pinks and reds from Home Depot and went on a multi-store adventure hunting down the heart punch 2. Glued contrasting cards back to back to make the bookmark two-sided…they looked better that way. 3. Punched a hole and threaded some plastic cord through 4. Punched some hearts down the side of the card and 5. signed each one xo, hazel
I think they are adorable. Hazel does too.
She is going to love handing these out to her friends.
And I am going to love everytime I find this tucked in the pages of a book.
Today I turned 33.
It was my first day back at work after a long weekend in Miami. It was nice to be back. Not quite the same degree of difficulty as my reentry a year ago today (I returned to work from my mat leave with Felix on my birthday last year.)
Glazed & Infused Donuts (and flowers! and mimosas! and streamers!) from my team at work.
The kindest words from the dearest of friends. Messages across all mediums, each one warming my heart.
My day flew by.
That is not unusual.
After work, we picked up the kiddos and swung by my p’s. Mom baked me a cake and ran it down to the car…along with a “birthday box” (her best invention - it’s literally a box full of surprises)….and my dad. Kisses and cakes exchanged in the circle driveway in front of their building. I love living near them.
We then headed home and ate empanadas. And listened to Les Mis on Vinyl (one of the thoughtful birthday gifts from my husband).
Hazel repeated her best pun to date: Eponine-enada. I couldn’t make that up if I tried.
My little family lit my candles and turned out the kitchen lights and sang me happy Birthday. Hazel blew 2/3 of them out before I had a chance….teamwork :) Felix discovered the joy that is licking frosting off a candle. That kept her busy.
Big bath. Bubbles, of course.
Feeling fly from her 4 days in the pool/ocean, Felix spent much of tonight’s bath showing off her new-found ability to dunk herself. I clapped everytime.
I put Felix to bed tonight. Unprompted, Hazel gave me the copy of The Giving Tree from off her shelf to read to Felix as a bedtime story. It was a great suggestion. A poignant birthday text. I fought back tears when I got to the part about the stump….Fee was feeling it too. She sat quietly through the whole book.
A goodnight kiss for Felix.
A goodnight kiss for Hazel.
Upstairs with Simon…Tonight we watch YouTube clips of Les Mis flash mobs and talk….we talk about work and I share more stories about our daughters on vacation. I’ve got a great guy.
And then, back to work. My nightly ritual. I enjoy it…I find I make progress in different ways when working after dark. It is my time to think - think about problems and think about solutions. This is the time where my ideas take shape.
It’s 1:33 am now - meaning, it is no longer even my birthday (and waaay past my bedtime)…but I wanted take a moment to capture my gratitude and feelings of immense love.
Thank you for a beautiful birthday.
The happiest news from Danielle and David:
Baby! They are having a baby!
I can’t wait to meet this little Coe.
What a neat person he or she will be…
D&D, my heart swells just thinking about the love you are about to know. ….And the lifetime of adventures our children will have together! I can only imagine the trouble they will cause.
Mad Love & Miracles of Life,
Well, it’s official…
Baby Coe arrives this May!
We couldn’t be more thrilled. Let the next grand adventure begin…
Fortune Magazine’s annual ranking of America’s top 100 employers is out for 2014. Google lands the No. 1 spot, again. Congrats to all companies (and employees) on the list.
Hazel (channeling her inner Liesl von Trapp)
We went over to my parent’s place for pizza last night….I was in the kitchen with my mom when Hazel marched in, climbed up on the stool and informed us of this fact. Dead serious.
God, I love that girl.