We’re nearing the end of this heat wave — clouds have rolled in tonight, and there’s a storm in the air. We’ve been waiting for rain, for a break in this suffocating heat, for days now, but it keeps being pushed further down the weekend. First Saturday, then Sunday, then Sunday night. But we’re still waiting,and it’s still hot out. Nell is playing in her playhouse outside. She stripped down to her diaper, and is running around, dipping everything she can find — toys, dog leashes, towels — into her water buckets.
She has been so good this weekend, and we’ve thrown a lot at her. Friday night was my organization’s annual picnic at Nats stadium. I had planned to work from home, then drive Nellie in after work and meet G at the game, but work had other plans for me, and I had to head in sooner. So I picked Nellie up after her lunch, instead, so she could nap in the car. Unfortunately, I came right after the clown visited to paint the kids’ faces, and right in the middle of a pizza party, so she wasn’t exactly thrilled to leave.
“Nell Nell said NO,” her best buddy, sitting next to her, informed me.
But she left with me anyway, and she napped all the way into the city, and then she was great at my office. She watched Henry Hugglemonster and Olivia on the iPad, ate the cookies our chefs put out every afternoon, and colored on any paper she could find with my editing pens and highlighters.
After hanging out at my office, we headed to G’s work so she could meet the rounds and say hi to his coworkers. And then we were off to the game!
It should be noted it was in the mid-nineties with a heat index in triple digits. She was great, though, eating her weight in watermelon at the picnic, and then sitting in her seat for almost the entire game — clapping when we clapped, dancing at the players’ intro songs, and enjoying the attention of friends around us.
In addition to the picnic, our tickets were also loaded with money for concessions or team store purchases. Nellie picked out a new red and blue Nats dress. And even though she was wearing her very favorite shirt, her pink Harper shirt, she made it through about two innings of the game before announcing, “Harper off! Dress on!” So she stripped in her seat, and changed into her dress, which she found very exciting.
By the time we finally headed to the car at 9:30, she was exhausted. She slept the whole way home and, blissfully, went straight to bed in her toddler bed for the night.
On Saturday, Nellie and I woke up early to head to IKEA and pick up a few things for the nursery, and, of course, to Starbucks and the grocery store — our usual Saturday morning errands. By the time we got back, it was almost time for Nellie to head to her best friend’s 2nd birthday party. She was pumped, and she has been talking about the party all day long.
He wanted her to sit with him to open presents, which lasted through about one gift…
…until all the kids were glommed into the center of the room, ripping paper as quickly as they could.
After cake, we headed outside to play with pools, slides, and sprinklers.
Nellie’s buddy wore his new Cars swim trunks and Lightning McQueen rash guard that Nellie picked out for him.
We stayed at the party until after 8, at which point Nellie and her friend gave each other a big hug goodbye. And then…. just as we were ready to head out the door, Nellie grabbed him and planted a big kiss on his lips. He played it totally cool, of course, giving her a quick glance and a “bye bye, Nell Nell!”
Needless to say, it was the second night in a row that Nellie fell asleep in the car and went straight to bed at home.
After all that excitement, we had a much more relaxing day today.
We went out to breakfast and ran a couple errands this morning, and then we all came back to spend time indoors with the pups and get some things done around the house. Nellie took a long, cool nap upstairs, and I finally had an opportunity to do a bit of work on the nursery.
It’s a very different experience setting up a nursery for the second time. Instead of opening things I’ve never seen before and wondering how on earth I would learn to use all of them, I am pulling out old favorites, and thinking about what it will be like to start again. Like my infant carriers, tiny cloth diapers, and breastfeeding supplies. Thinking about starting again — about introducing a baby into our family — is overwhelming, to say the least; but it is a very different kind of overwhelming than when we were preparing for Nellie. There’s an element of comfort in pulling out all of the old stuff and remembering that yes, we’ve done this before and we can do it all again.
The nursery isn’t very far along, but here’s what we’ve got so far for the little guy. The goal is clean, white, modern, with a touch of circus whimsy. It’s turning out kind of fun.