Friday, September 17, 2004

Back home

Traveling with a toddler is always an adventure. I have to give it to her, though- she’s a great traveler. I could not have asked for her to do any better with the flight delays and missed connection on the way to Little Rock. Since I’m a believer in making toys out of what you have, the only entertainment I brought with us was a few of the more loved books and her doll. In her eyes, the airport was one great big toy. The people walking by were fun to talk to, the moving sidewalks were a blast, other people’s strollers were fun to steal and the trucks—those were the big winners. What she called trucks were actually those things that look like extended golf carts that make that obnoxious beeping sound like a garbage truck stuck in reverse. They were everywhere in both the LaGuardia and Charlotte airports and she loved it. She even got to climb onto one that was stopped. I think it was the highlight of the day for her!

We had a great time seeing everyone in Little Rock. She’s so much more active and interactive now. She enjoyed showing off her verbal skills and added several more words, including a few three word sentences. She made her first visit to the zoo while we were there. You never know how they are going to react to real animals versus the pictures. We got to see monkeys, giraffes, elephants, camels, birds, snakes and a few more I’m surely forgetting. There was a small petting area with these very friendly pygmy goats that ate all the dead leaves off the ground. She was not terribly interested in petting them, but really wanted me to. She thought all the animals were pretty cool, but what did she seem to love the most? The silly train that we paid $2 to ride in about a 100 yd circle with lovely views of overgrown bamboo, some discarded soda bottles and a few dead fish. She talked about the choo choo for the rest of the trip. Just when you think you know what they are going to like and they go and pick something else.

Now that we’re back, we’re trying to get back into our routine. I’m finding that unpacking the suitcase is a little more challenging with a toddler around. Actually, to be more precise, unpacking it isn’t a problem. Getting things were they need to be is the problem. I keep finding things under the dining room table that need to be put away. She keeps trying to put all of her clothes on- as pants. Of course every pair of shoes has to be tried on.

The weather’s getting cooler and the leaves are starting to change. For those that had planned to make a trip here to see the colors, you have about 2-3 weeks before they are at peak color then maybe a week after that before they are pretty much gone. If you are thinking of doing it next year, make note that the end of September is typically peak color. If I were smart, I’d tell everyone that it happens a few weeks later than it does- then we’d have help raking the 2 billion leaves that grace our yard!

Maybe I should look at getting some of those goats….

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