I think the birthday trip was a hit. We made it to Philly and back without incident, and both kids seemed to enjoy themselves. The first item on the agenda yesterday was the Liberty Bell. Then, we had lunch at World Cafe Live while we watched Moona Luna perform. In the afternoon, we went to the science museum at the Franklin Institute. We spent today, Sunday, at the Please Touch Museum before returning home.
The biggest challenge of the weekend was keeping up with Mae. She walks or runs 10 feet or more ahead of us, curious and fearless — not a good combination. In a museum setting, she wants to see everything and is not interested in waiting for you to catch up or asking if she can move on. She goes about and doesn’t look back to see if you’re with her. If I had a dollar for every time we said, “Stop”, “Slow down”, and “Stay with your grown-up”, this would have been a free trip. Hand holding lasts for a matter of seconds. I probably let her get away more this weekend than I would normally because the settings were such that exploration was encouraged and the temptations were many. It’s just a tiresome job to keep her within sight.
I kept having flashbacks to Chicago. We went there for vacation in August 2008. She and Jay were is a double stroller, the kind where the older kid can sit in the back, facing the parent. Hubby was pushing the stroller and I was walking beside him. We passed a restaurant that had a funny name, and Hubby and I looked up at the sign and made some joke or comment about it. We then stopped at the corner and waited for the traffic light to turn green. Midway the intersection, we heard Mae calling us. I was confused because her voice sounded far away. I looked down and she wasn’t in her seat. I turned around, and there she was running into the crosswalk to catch up with us, yelling, “Wait for me!” Talk about shocked and scared. While we were waiting at the corner, she’d gotten off the stroller to look down into a subway entrance. Ironically, she was annoyed with us for not waiting for her.
This weekend was a reminder that major outings for us require one adult per child, and confirmation that I’m not crazy for being extra cautious when we are away from home. I still put them both in a cart when we go into a store, any kind of store. If the store has a shopping cart, I want it and I want them both in it. On the rare occasion that I take them into a grocery store without Hubby, I squeeze them both into a shopping cart and place groceries under the bottom. If the bottom fills, I tuck items around them in the cart. Maybe they complain about being crowded or maybe others wonder what the heck I’m doing, but I just keep on moving.