I’m going to sort of do a run-down of the vacay so far, just to keep y’all posted.
Day 2: Babywearing conference all day. Saw many, many friends, most of whom I’d only known online or on the phone, which was super awesome. I did not feel like that kid in the cafeteria with nobody to sit with, which was a good thing. I may appear quite confident, but those types of settings send me straight back to junior high, standing at the cafeteria door with a tray in my hand, staring at the sea of chatting kids. But I digress. Key note speaker rocked. She’s doing doctoral research on how babywearing affects mothers, particularly those with PPD, or tendencies towards that. This is something I could make a million inferences on, and I’m sure those with closer connections to new mothers than I would as well, but it’ll be awesome when she’s done to have some concrete, peer-reviewed research to back up a bunch of “old wives tales”.
Day 3: More classes, more info. I took RE in the AM to the conference, and together we thoroughly enjoyed a yoga class and wrapping II. She found a little pal to run around the yoga class with. If there is a cute little boy within a hundred yards, she’s following him. And she did so many of the yoga poses, which was just adorable. We’re going to have to do more of that when we get home. Wrapping II rocked, because someone fabulous (who’s name I cannot recall), taught me how to to a secure high back carry, with RE, and I did it, and it felt good!! Maybe my dream of becoming a wrapper with our next kid will come true!
Michael came to get RE before lunch, and took her to Skokie to go swimming with Uncle James and the kids camp he works with. She then got to hang out in the gym, and literally spent time hanging from the trapeze! Whee! Fun!
Spent the rest of the day doing conference stuff, volunteering for the fashion show, helping moms get into their carriers, and then going out to dinner with some of my new friends. After that, we all headed over to Beth’s house for a vendor party, where we drank beers, ate guac, celebrated Amanda’s birthday, and partied. I felt truly humbled to be in the same room with some of those ladies, namely Kristen of Hotslings. She’s like a babywearing celebrity, and she actually knew who I was (or covered really well). But really, she was pretty awesome to talk to, and I really respect the way she runs her business. We also discovered that many of us who run our own businesses are first-borns…driven, determined, stubborn, etc.
Saturday, day 4 in Chicago: headed out to DeKalb to hang out with Tammy and Drew. RE fell asleep in the car on the way downtown, and slept through the better part of her first proper train ride. Bummer. But she woke up in time to see where she was, and get pretty excited about being on the train. We had a great time hanging out with Tammy and Drew and the kids…it’s so neat to see how cool the kids are, and what a rockin’ mom Tam is. Gabe has this funny little thing he does when you ask him if he wants something. Instead of, “yes” or “sure”, he’ll say, “OK, me too”.
“Gabe, do you want some lunch?”
“OK, me too!”
Silly kid. And Izzy just walks around going, “no, no, no” but shaking her head yes. And she’s just the sweetest little love bug. RE and Gabe were running around like crazies, but Izzy just wanted snuggles.
We stayed there through Monday morning, since James was in the Pride Parade and was out late and wouldn’t really be able to pick us up. Tam took us to the train station this morning, and we headed straight into DT Chicago to wander around. Well, not wander so much as I really just wanted to go to the American Girl Store. I know, it’s a racket, and it’s no better than Build-a-Bear (well, yes it is), but I played with a Samantha doll when I was a kid, and I really wanted Ry to have her first American Girl doll from the store in Chicago. Who knows when we’ll have a chance to make it out here again? When I walked her up to the Bitty Baby section her eyes got super wide and she kept saying, “mama, baby dolls!” over and over again. I asked her if she wanted to take one home and she just got this sweet bug-eyed look and nodded. She chose a little blond baby (big shocker) and we got her the “starter set” for a mere $98 (hey, we’ve not really spent anything on this trip). So, if you want to know what to get her for the holidays, AG doll stuff would be it.
I really enjoyed being in there though…I’m such a girl. I wanted all the babies. And all their little outfits. I could have easily dropped a grand in that store, and I’ve no doubt that’s what they’re hoping will happen. We walked down to where they keep the historical dolls, the ones I played with as a girl, and when RE saw them all lined up (maybe 15 dolls) on a shelf, she asked, in a really sweet, innocent, quietly amazed voice: “Mama, more dolls to come home with me?” Not in a greedy, I want kind of way, but really just in a disbelieving, could those really all be for me kind of way. Too sweet. Where on earth would we put them!?
Back to James’ place, then to the nearby park for some fun playtime, then to Thai food. Then pretty much straight to bed, but only after reading The Rainy Day and tucking in both new Bitty Baby (who needs a name, anyone?) and Baby Zach.
Will add pics to this tomorrow…tired.