I can’t say the same about winter, but Portman and I absolutely love DC in the springtime. This week marked the start of the annual Cherry Blossom Festival, with the peak blooms falling on Friday March 28th. In the past we have avoided the crowds by going a week or so after the peak, but this year we decided to go on the actual peak day. Harper and I met Portman at his office after a long afternoon nap, and we all walked down to the Tidal Basin to see the trees. It turns out there’s a reason they advertise the peak bloom day – it was absolutely breathtaking! After a brief stop at the World War 2 Memorial to let Harper stretch her legs, we made it to the Tidal Basin just in time for sunset. We parked ourselves across from the Jefferson Memorial and enjoyed the views. Harper thought that the ducks were a lot cooler than the trees, but she did appreciate that there were a heck of a lot of flowers around. She wanted to touch all of them!
Unfortunately the 70-degree afternoon temperature tricked mom and she did not pack or dress appropriately. By the time the sun went down, it had dropped to the low 40′s and Harper’s little lips were completely blue! We have never seen her so cold! We had to bundle her up and zip her into our jackets and carry her the 12 blocks back to the car. Luckily there were 2 of us to take turns because 12 blocks is a lot longer than it seems with a toddler strapped to your chest!
Yesterday we celebrated Harper’s 2nd Easter, which happened to be her “first 2nd” of any major holiday (Daddy thought this was a big deal). The Easter Bunny brought Harper a Spud Bunny and plastic eggs filled with cereal. The cereal eggs were a huge hit!
After breakfast Harper helped me unload the dishwasher. Harper loves to be a big helper, and one of her favorite things to do is to hand me all of the clean dishes so that I can put them in the cabinet. She will come running from the other room when she hears me start to unload!
After a long nap, we put on our Easter best and Portman’s parents (Nona and Pops) and Uncle Julian came over for brunch and the much-anticipated egg hunt.
Harper really grasped the concept of an Easter egg hunt. Daddy filled eggs with goldfish and animal crackers, and as soon as Harper figured out that there were snacks in the eggs she was tearing through the yard to find them! She managed to eat a lot of them, but we did leave lots of treats for the squirrels.
Harper has been playing with her “baby” a lot lately, and as this video proves, she is definitely ready to be a big sister! This morning she insisted that it was time for the baby to go “night night” and kept stuffing her into the cradle. She also loves to hug and kiss her baby (open mouth, very sloppy) but we need to work on being “gentle” with the baby’s head!
Today we met Trish and Colin at Clemyjontri Park, which I have been dying to explore. "Clemy" is a huge park in Mclean that is covered in 9 acres of rubber flooring and is supposed to be accessible for children of all ages and abilities. It was designed to accommodate handicapped children in wheelchairs, so the park has a ton of wide ramps and bridges to explore. Harper thought it was absolutely the greatest place on earth and spent nearly the entire time running up and down the ramps. She wasn't quite sure what to do when she got to a bridge, so she resorted to crawling across them! It was quite possibly the coolest park I've ever been to, so we will definitely be going back. Tons more photos on Smugmug.
Harper has been carrying her “baby” around the house for several days now and has really taken an interest in her needs. She loves to give her baby her “baba” (bottle) and tries to do other mothering things for it. Here are some photos from this morning:
Attempting to undress her baby:
Giving baby hugs:
Eating her baby’s foot:
Sniffing her baby’s diaper:
I want to thank Portman for putting XM Kids on my radio presets because I couldn’t possibly make it through the day without such hits as “My Big Underpants” and “There’s a Carp in the Tub.” This morning after hearing an interview with “Forrest Skunk,” who as you can probably guess is a mentally challenged skunk, we were subjected to a remix of “The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything.” For those not familiar with children’s musical hits, the original song can be found on the Veggie Tales Sountrack titled Silly Songs with Larry (which is surprisingly hysterical). Who in the world thought to remix a Veggie Tales song? All I know is that I should definitely start writing kids songs because if it’s as easy as “My Big Underpants,” I could be a millionaire in a matter of weeks.
We had a beautiful weekend except for one minor detail… it was in the 30′s both Saturday and Sunday. Isn’t it officially Spring? Despite the cold temperatures we managed to have a jam-packed weekend. On Saturday we went to Great Beginnings, a children’s furniture and baby-gear warehouse in Maryland. We ordered all of Harper’s new “big girl furniture” and tested out double strollers. Harper is moving into a new room with the anticipated arrival of her baby brother, so we picked out a big- girl dresser with a hutch bookshelf (in lieu of a changing table), a nightstand and a new crib with a toddler rail. She isn’t ready for the toddler rail yet, but we went ahead and bought it so that it will be easy to convert the crib as soon as she’s ready. She sleeps so well in her crib that we decided against moving her to a big bed too early. As far as I’m concerned, as long as she is sleeping she is welcome to stay in the crib for years and years! Her furniture should arrive in about 8 weeks, so now we have to clear out the room and get it painted for her. I am so excited to make a little girl’s room since she has been sleeping in a blue nursery for the past 14 months!
On Sunday we decided to head to Old Town again to watch the airplanes. It was absolutely freezing, so we opted for brunch at Chart House which has floor-to-ceiling windows that look out over the Potomac. You can still see the planes landing if you are in a good spot, and luckily we were right by the windows so Harper was a very happy camper! She took a short break from coloring and ate nearly as much as I did, and for some reason decided that it was a good idea to put her scrambled eggs in her hair.
Harper is extremely good at entertaining herself and will gladly play in the kitchen for hours while I cook dinner. Yesterday she occupied herself with a salad spinner for over an hour… seriously! She carried it back and forth between the front door and the kitchen pausing only to disassemble and reassemble it. She also tried, unsuccessfully, to both sit and stand in it.
Right now Harper is interested in anything that she can break or make a lot of noise with. To that end I made her some “egg shakers” using plastic Easter eggs. I filled the eggs with little pastas and rice and hot glued them shut. They make great little musical toys and are quiet enough for car trips. She loves them!
We have had amazing weather this week and have been spending a lot of time outside. Today we met our friends Trish and Colin at the park for a little play date and the kids proceeded to get as messy as they could before heading home for lunch. Harper wore her “serious face” and still appears to be scared of the swings! Lots more pictures are on our website.
“You go first, no you! Okay on the count of three…”