Thursday, August 20, 2009

Wistfully Remembering Vacation

I am going to talk about the day we took my dad and stepmom to Brookfield Zoo. It was last week, back in the days of blissful summer vacation.

Here we are in front of the fountain. Nick was fascinated by the mechanical dinosaurs. Why do they have mechanical dinosaurs at the zoo? Why, to confuse little children, of course. "I want to see the elephants and the lions and the dinosaurs," one little girl exclaimed at the entrance. I'm not sure what their motivation is, but it sure gets the kids excited.

Here Nick is checking out the alligator and all of the birds in the swamp. I think he really liked seeing the different animals. It is very cool to see him respond to what he's seeing and hearing. As he gets bigger, he responds to things in different, more mature ways.

Here his grandma and grandpa are holding Nick at the butterfly gardens. The one at Brookfield Zoo was gorgeous, but I think there were more butterflies at Reiman Gardens. Nick was happy to see both. He is a first grandchild, so he gets to go lots of places with his four grandmas, three grandpas, and two great-grandmas.

I feel really lucky to have so much family wanting to spend time with Nick and cuddle him. They say that children grow up and reflect all the love that they were given; I believe Nick will have a lot of love to share.

Nick is petting, er, slapping, the goat. I'm not sure what kind of prozac they give these goats, but they sure were mellow. This poor goat even seemed to like Nick's manhandling. (Or would you call it babyhandling?)

One thing that I'm loving about being a mom is noticing how babies learn things. I know Nicholas so well that I pretty much notice as he's learning something new. Take today, for example: Nick is trying to learn how to pull up. I had him sitting in the baby cage while I made him dinner, and I was watching him pull his body up. He hadn't figured out what to do with his legs yet, so he would just hang there. But then he got an idea, and his face lit up. A lightbulb shined above his head and everything. Suddenly, he turned one leg underneath him. He tried to turn the other one, but couldn't. Still, he was able to pull pretty far on one knee and one foot.

Monday was my first day back to work, and school officially started today. I'm excited about the school year, and optimisic as well. I have a classroom with windows this year, and the sunlight coming in just makes me feel happy. I bought all these plants, so our room looks very homey. I also work with the friendliest people, so going to work is enjoyable. But boy, am I tired. I actually think I might go to bed early.

I'm trying really hard to stay on track with my healthy eating, working out, and blog posts. Nick was sick earlier this week and is still pretty crabby, but I'm very proud of how much I've still managed to accomplish. I worked out twice at the YMCA this week, did two Pilates Band workouts, and even turned down the sweets table at work yesterday. (Our PTA had a whole table of homemade goodies, and I never say no. But yesterday, I did.) Tomorrow I will try to do another Pilates workout. It has to stop hurting so bad at some point. I'm pretty sure I'll never look like the toned ladies in the video, though.

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