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Location: Northern California

Read all about the adventures of the Tsao Family during the summer of 2012

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


Ice cream for dinner and other parenting highlights

Ghirardelli Chocolate Factory
Originally uploaded by marytsao.
I've been spending lots of time with my kids lately, which may seem like an odd thing to write considering I'm a stay-at-home mom. But I've really cut back on my commitments--including blogging and reading blogs--and instead am going to music classes and gym classes and playgroups and field trips. And it's actually been quite a lot of fun.

It's getting easier and easier to be out and about with both kids. Now that Emily's completely toilet trained and Thomas is, um, predictable in his, um, movements, I don't bother carrying a giant diaper bag filled with tons of "just in case" crap. Instead, I throw a diaper or two and a baggy of wipes in my purse and we're good to go. Neither kid needs a bottle and Emily is completely off sippy cups, too. Thomas still prefers one, but is fine with a straw and o.k. with just a cup. For field trips involving lots of walking, I use a cheap umbrella stroller with a buggy board attachment. (We call it the name Emily came up with, the rocket skate.) The kids trade off sitting and standing. For shorter field trips, I don't even bother with the stroller, although I do sometimes end up carrying a screaming and crying Thomas.

It's also more fun to go places with the kids now that they're becoming more interested in the things that we do. They notice everything: airplanes, boats, ants, birds, motorcycles, oncoming traffic, groups of kids, crying babies, flags, interesting smells, carousels, statues, clouds, the list goes on and on. Emily talks almost non-stop and Thomas is rarely at a loss for words. They're always so excited about everything; it's easy to entertain them and to want to introduce them to new things and new places.

I suppose what's not fun is when they pick at each other and fight. "Mommy, Thomas is touching me and that makes me angry!" is a favorite complaint of Emily's. But the fighting is rare. In general, they're good natured and well behaved. I hope they say the same about me one day.

This past Monday Mike went out of town for work and it felt a little bit like a special holiday. Knowing that we didn't have to be home for dinner made our field trip into San Francisco to see the Queen Mary 2 oddly special, like we were skipping school or had called in sick to work when we weren't really sick. You know that feeling you get when life has given you an unexpected gift of stolen time? That's what Monday felt like.

The kids and I played tourist all day and spent tons of money on kitschy souvenirs, snacks, carousel rides, lunch at the Rainforest Cafe, and insanely expensive Ghirardelli Square parking. Because we didn't have to be home at any particular time, the royal WE decided on ice cream for dinner and so we enjoyed sundaes at the Ghirardelli Chocolate Factory. It was the best hot fudge sundae I've ever eaten; there's a reason that place is a popular tourist destination.

So if you notice my absence in the blogosphere and wonder what I'm up to, I might be putting together a floor puzzle of the world or making hand print cards or maybe even eating ice cream for dinner. With these two:

At the piers

Can you blame me?