Day 80 New Phase

The girls seem like they are entering a new phase. They are sleeping later. Shhhh! I don’t want to jinx it. But let me clarify. In the past it didn’t what time they went to bed, they woke up at 5 or 6am. Now slowly and subtly their bedtime seems to be having some effect on their wake-up time.

This morning they both came to sleep in bed with me probably around 6. We slept all snuggled together until 8am! 8am?? I had missed half of my morning routine by then, but it was so enchanting that I didn’t mind. Something similar has happened a few days in a row. I can only hope that this is one of those phases that seems like it’s going to last forever.

Today was Thorsten’s birthday and for some reason both girls didn’t want to say Happy Birthday in the morning. Kids are so weird that way.

This was the 8th time we’ve celebrated his birthday together. The first was at the beginning of a whirlwind, adventure romance. That first year we left Munich and headed to Italy to get out of the rain. As we headed South, the temperature rose. We called the hotel along the way and the sun came out just as we crossed the border. Our arrival at the Lago di Garda was heralded by breezy kite surfers. The sunshine bouncing on the water’s tips. The alluring color of the towns beckoned us on to the calm of Sirmione. We savored every flavor, absorbed every color and scent- the icy orange of the Aperol, the bright yellow of the limoncello and the hedges made of blooming jasmine and rosemary.

The other day Big Sister was going on about what she’s going to do when she’s a mommy and then (in a voice that sounded a lot like mine) continued, but I know that I should wait a very long time to become a mommy because kids are hard and I want to see and do lots of things on my own first. I love her so. And I’m glad my brain washing is working because those days in Italy without kids were a whole other kind of magic and I wish her plenty of those.

After the first year Thorsten’s birthdays got a little more mundane. None have swept me off my feet like that first one but today I’m sure my heart is full in a way it only had the potential to be full that first year.

This year Thorsten requested Passionfruit frozen yogurt and milk chocolate ice cream. I couldn’t have been more happy to make gifts like these. Artisan style ice cream at home is totally where it’s at. It’s something to enjoy, to create, to discuss, to roll over on your tongue. It’s wildly satisfying– a whole universe to itself.

And we went to a Beer Keller for dinner. This one has an amazingly long slide. Three people can ride at once and you can control your speed because of the angle. I rode the slide a few times with both girls. We went down hand-in-hand. They shrieked and howled with delight. Then they got brave and started going on their own. Up the steps, down the slide and around. Again and Again, they cried. I wanted to take advantage of their independence and sit with the adults but their excitement was contagious, their exhilaration so captivating, so irresistible that I watched them a number of times. It wasn’t my birthday but it was a spectacular gift.

Little Bean has entered another new phase–the one where she cries over absolutely everything. All. Day. Today she cried when we put a piece of chocolate cake on her plate. She cried because it was too big and she needed someone to cut it…Really. I’m serious that is why she was crying.

For a few minutes as we finished up dinner, it started to rain. We knew it wouldn’t last but we gathered the girls under the cover of the umbrella where we were seated to wait it out. Little Bean refused the news that once the rain ended, it was time to go home. She kept her eyes firmly focused on the playground and when she noticed the sound of the raindrops slowing down, she clapped her hands together and said, Ok! I want to play!

I don’t think I can effectively describe the sound of the cries when she realized that we were leaving. She kept it up as we walked to the car, so hopelessly distraught she could hardly breath. So beside herself, she needed to be carried up the hill. The devastation so final that she couldn’t even say goodbye to anyone. She sat in her car seat, and composed herself enough to say (in between deep, gulping breaths), I want to go back to the play ground. I admired her determination and reassured her that we will go back. And then she lost it again howling about wanting to go back right now.

Well, you win some and you lose some. I’m learning that and so is she.

Until tomorrow,

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