Set aside the first week that I watched the girls and my time “away” from work and spending my days as the girls’ nanny was just what the doctor ordered for me. I needed a mental break and I don’t mind the physical expense that comes with playing, walking, singing, reading, feeding, and monitoring them. I shifted my mindset from one of being their nanny and to just having fun with them. It’s summer and the weather during the week has been nice, I don’t have to sit at a desk all day, so let’s go out and play.
Certainly, it was the pressure lowered from work that made the second two weeks wonderful, but we also had glorious weather and the girls and I fell into our own routine, which wasn’t so much routine to begin with. Reese and I would walk up the hill, me pushing the double stroller, in the morning to go get Lottie. Reese has a whole routine with this walk; smelling particular flowers, sometimes requiring lifts in the air to smell the tall ones, saying “hi” and “bye” to the neighborhood chickens, etc. But Reese also walks all the way to the top of the hill and sometimes further, sometimes all of the way to Lottie’s. On the way home, the girls walk about half of the way and then I pop them in the stroller. By the time we are home, they are ready for breakfast, generally this being yogurt, sometimes oatmeal. We’d play inside for a while, reading books, doing puzzles, obstacle courses, etc. We’d go outside for a little while before lunch and with the nice weather we would enjoy lunch outside listening to jams. The girls would go down for their nap anytime between 12 and 1 pm and that was my time to check work emails, get my own lunch and on two occasions I actually had enough energy to work out.
The girl’s naps range from 90 minutes to 3 1/2 hours, generally, so sometimes they are up early enough for an afternoon excursion and sometimes they are up just in time for a snack and for a walk home to return Lottie. But these girls love walks and generally when asked, that’s what they would choose to do. The double stroller served me well during this time and I used it often. If we didn’t walk home we would play in the backyard; singing and dancing to music, playing with the water, testing out the bikes that are still a tad too big for them to ride themselves.
We did a lot of things during the three weeks though. I took them to the beach at Lake Washington to play in the sand and water one afternoon. We walked through the Kubota Gardens in South Seattle twice and that was glorious. We got drive-thru fries for the girls to share on the way home. We had several picnics on our picnic blankets, finding shade in quiet parks. We made cookies and smoothies in the kitchen. I had the grand idea to walk to a dog park one afternoon, thinking the girls would find it fun to watch the dogs play. This was a good idea until Lottie immediately darted towards the dogs to chase them because she has absolutely no fear in animals. I took them to a secret playground twice to play on the “big slide”. They loved this and it was impressive to see them go down the tall slides on their own now and even exploring more difficult structures like rock climbing walls.
I was honestly a little sad that my time with the girls was coming to an end last week. I really enjoyed getting to know Lottie better and I have wanted to adventure with Reese during the weekdays for some time now. They are so fun right now, learning new words and new things on the daily. I’m back at work now and back at my shared office space with Bryan and that is also good, but I’m really grateful that I was able to take some time away. And I think Reese is excited to have her friend Joie back too.