...and other misconceptions I made 08-01-20
2008 Jan 20

Archive for posts tagged 'home-alone-4'

July 17th 2008
Home alone IV – day 4

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Another very good night. Another good morning with happy and cheerful children. It’s really amazing how easy the girls have made this for me. There was one minor change in plans, the girls really didn’t want to walk to school this morning. It’s gorgeous here – nice and fresh in the morning (in the 50s) and sunny and warm but not too hot (75-80) in the afternoon. But apparently after a few days of warm weather the cooler morning temperatures were already to cold for my little babies. Oh well – we took the car.

H2 and S2 play percussionsAfter school we walked into the Village – and yes, Spacemom, we did of course go to Starbucks. But then we had a special treat – Thursdays there’s the Farmers’ Market right next to the playground we usually go to after school. There’s lots of food and always live music. Today the girls decided that the rhythm section needed some help and they pitched in (but to be honest, the drummer was the only one who knew roughly what he was doing. The other two… let’s say there’s room for improvement; lots and lots of room. But the girls didn’t mind. And so I tipped the musicians (and I use this term rather loosely) anyway.

We walked home, the girls took a shower and went to bed. They were really really tired.

Yet another day of lots of fun, lots of time outside – and no TV at all. I’m happy.

The bad news? The plane that K2 was supposed to take back to Portland had to turn around on their way down from Portland to Santa Rosa. It made it on the second attempt and but by then things were running an hour and a half late. K2 is now in the air and will be arriving at PDX in about 20 minutes. But that meant that instead of us coming to the airport and picking her up (which would have been so much fun for the girls; they love airplanes) K2 now has to take a cab home and won’t get to see the girls till tomorrow. Oh well.

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July 16th 2008
Home alone IV – day 3

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Last night wasn’t as good, but the morning was even better than the day before. I already posted some of their dialogue – but that wasn’t the only thing that made me laugh this morning. They were just happy and cheerful and having fun. Mind you that the first two sentences from each of them were “Where’s Mama?” and then “I wanna watch TV!”. The answers were “in California mit Auntie Judie” and “Nein”, respectively…

S2 drinks apple juiceI picked them up from school and we once again went to Starbucks and then the playground. At Starbucks they surprised me. H2 drinks chocolate milkNeither of them wanted a vanilla milk. S2 wanted apple juice and H2 wanted chocolate milk. Ok, I can work with that.

Once they were done we walked across the street to the playground. They were much more willing to climb and be active today. No idea why. They clearly had fun.

I’m a little worried about posting the first couple of pictures. Trust me, nothing happened. H2 didn’t fall, didn’t even get scared or anything. They are just taken from an angle that makes things look a little more dangerous than they actually were…

Did S2 push too hard?Which way was up again?

After a while we walked home. On the way we discussed dinner plans. I told them that I had Bratwurst and asked them what they’d like to have with that. Imagine my surprise when S2 matter-of-factly said “couscous” and S2 added “and apfelsauce”. Okay then, I guess. That’s what we had and the girls ate well. Hurray for the team.

Bedtime was very easy and they are sound asleep. There’s something about walking and playing hard for about two hours after a day in preschool that seems to help tremendously with that…

Finally, a few impressions from the playground. Enjoy.

H2 surveying the surroundingsS2 sliding down the poleH2 talking a breakS2 climbing to the top

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July 15th 2008
Home alone IV – day 2

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After an uninterrupted night the girls woke up a few minutes before six. Quite happy and giggly, to say the least. We had a prolonged morning routine (doing everything on the to-do list and also finding time for some playing) and went to swimming class. The girls did very well, but then there was the threat of doom. As usual they were promised “Goldfish” (a small bag of snacks) after class. But when they proudly went to the young woman at the counter she told them that they were out of goldfish. Uh-oh.

After the first melt-down I was able to talk them into mini-pretzels as a substitute reward. Some moaning and debating, but once they were munching away everything was forgotten. We got to preschool and they raced out to the playground to join there class (it is amazing how much they love school right now).

Work kept me in the office quite a bit longer than planned so I was a little rushed in the evening. Feed the pets, switch cars (mine has twice the gas mileage, so I try not to drive the maxivan to the office) and then get the girls. S2 was thrilled to see me. H2 pretended that she wanted to stay at school – but it was just a game. Once I told them that we were going to have “Mac and cheese outside” they were besides themselves in excitement.

We went to the Racoon Lodge and I’ll let you judge from the pictures if you think the girls had fun…

H2 and S2 drawingH2 and S2 eating dinner

Sorry, once again just the phone-pictures. I can’t believe I keep forgetting to take my camera…

After we got home they raced around the house and played (in between they chased the dogs – which was hilarious, but for pedagogic reasons I had to interfere). We took a bath (mostly they did) and had an extremely easy bed time. Ok, I am fibbing here. I got in a bit of a tussle of wills with S2 right after bath time, just as I begin moisturizing them. I had to threaten to send her to bed without book and without being allowed to “count to a letter” (gasp!). She went from willful and stubborn to weeping in two seconds. I asked her to apologize and told her that if she continued to behave well I’d forget about it and she could have a book and count to the letter ‘y’. Which worked brilliantly.

I guess I should explain what “count to a letter” means. It’s a part of our bedtime routine where the girls pick a letter and lay down on their bed with their head on their pillow. Then they say the alphabet and as they reach the letter that they picked the grownup quickly flips the blanket over them and tugs them in. It’s the highlight of bedtime these days.

In summary, another great day.

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July 14th 2008
Home alone IV

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As the title indicates – K2 is on the run. I mean, on the road. Celebrating the birthday of a girlfriend with a four day trip to Napa Valley. I hear there are things on the agenda that do not involve drinking wine. But since the champagne tastings start as early as 8:45am one day, I can’t be sure how many such things there are… Anyway, she deserves it. And just as the last two times, I’ll try to report here what’s going on in a house with two kids, two dogs and (sadly) only one cat while Mama is gone.

I drove K2 to the airport on my lunch break. As always she had done lots of prepping (all the laundry is done, there’s a to do list, etc.), but there’s a noticeable drop in food preparation. Mind you, this is not a complaint. Ok, let me repeat that. This is NOT a complaint. It’s much more a sign of how much easier things have gotten over the last few months. I can easily go out and have dinner with them. It’s no big deal to cook something. They entertain themselves. With occasional adult enforcement of rules. And if all else fails, a few minutes of their current favorite (This is Emily Yeung) on the TiVo does wonders.

I walked to their preschool, picked them up and walked to Starbucks with them. H2 wanted “the usual” (vanilla milk), S2 picked apple juice this time. They were adorable, we talked to a nice police officer and then moved on to the playground. As usual, they wanted to be on the swings but I got them to run around and climb as well. After a while we walked home. It’s actually quite a walk for their age (about a kilometer, two thirds of a mile). But clearly that didn’t bother them, they actually did some dance performance on a quiet side street half way between the playground and home. I forgot to bring a camera, but I was able to capture it on my cell phone…

shall we dance?H2 in the back, S2 in front

The evening then was easy. I made dinner, the girls played and watched a few minutes of TV. After dinner it was basically bed time. No complaints, no problems. They appear to be sound asleep.

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