My sister is teaching summer school in the mornings, so requested some babysitting assistance from family so that Unka Rop could go and work too, since their daycare option wasn't worthwhile, expense-wise, for just the few hours a day for the one month it was needed. I was able to commit for one to two days a week for three of the four weeks needed in July. Here was Week 1.
My sister had a Kelty backpack carrier, which I loved using with Z, since it has a metal frame so you can prop it up on the ground, put the child in, then sit down and put the pack on. Much easier than trying to wrap them or secure them in a soft carrier while also holding them up on your back as you fasten them in. I had to give it back once Pilu was old enough to fit in it, so I didn't have it long, as Pilu is only 8-months younger than Z.
|PB/chocolate PB sandwich pops, snow peas, carrots, cheese|
On my second day there, I made the girls some fun themed lunches, since my sister was away later for a job interview. I had brought a bag with some fun lunch tools, including some character sandwich cutters/presses. Unanimously the girls chose the Miffy cutter.
First I used the cutter portion to cut the bread into as many Miffy shapes as I could, then I added the spreads (PB and Co's Dark Chocolate PB for Tually, plain PB for Pilu, and both for Z) and stuck a pretzel stick (I planned ahead and brought a bag from home) in between the slices, then pressed down with the stamper piece to imprint and seal them into little sandwich pops.
Each girl got some snow peas I had brought to use up from our ever-growing CSA stash, and some carrot sticks from the one carrot I found in their fridge. Tually and Z each got one Miffy cheese shape, since the cheddar was down to the nub and there was only enough for two small slices. Pilu got all the scraps. (Just like the sandwiches, I used the cutter portion to make the bunny shape, then the imprint part to press in the details. You want to be careful not to break it apart when pulling the cheese off.)
I only managed to snap a picture of Z's, since Pilu was off and eating hers the nano-second it was done, and Tually snagged hers while I was finishing Z's. My child was busy doing something, and took advantage of her competition being distracted by the food so she could play with all the toys without having to take turns or share.
I had brought some Rainier cherries (also from our CSA,) but both my nieces proclaimed they didn't like cherries, so I belatedly added some to Z's plate, after she had sat down to eat.
My first day there, the time flew by so fast. Before I had a chance to make a fun lunch, my nieces were making their own sandwiches from the fixin's my sister had left out for them on their little table.
I had brought my PB and Co Dark Chocolate Dreams to help use it up, since Hubby had recently gone through the cupboard and discovered my spreads collection. Apparently he feels that White Chocolate PB, Dark Chocolate PB, Chocolate Almond Butter, SunButter (sunflower seed, nut free/school safe,) WowButter (soy, nut free/school safe) Biscoff Creamy and Crunchy cookie spreads, and creamy and crunchy regular peanut butters are more than one household needs. Harumph. The only problem *I* saw was that we were out of Nutella too!
So anyway, I brought it to share and it was a big hit! I told them they could use it instead of jelly, or by itself.
When my sister got back from work soon after, she suggested we go to a "nearby" (hour-drive away) raspberry and strawberry U-Pick farm. She verified that they had raspberries, since neither of us felt the hour each way (in separate cars, since neither of us can fit 4 carseats and 2 Mamas) was worth it for strawberries, as we both had strawberry farms closer to home.
While I fed Baby and
hollered at kids got the kids ready, my sister packed lunches in her EasyLunchboxes. Tually's second half-sandwich had only a few bites taken out of it, and Z's second half-sandwich was roughly half-eaten, so she packed those along with fresh half-sandwiches for Z and Pilu, as well as full-sized ones for herself and me.
|Tually's 2nd lunch: Chocolate-PB sandwich, carrots and apples, Goldfish|
So I was super excited that she had kept it out of storage so that I could borrow it again. This will be great for walking the fairs and such this Summer, so Z can ride the stroller if she wants. And will also be useful if my CSA has any u-pick stuff that interests me (so far it's been more lettuces, which I'm mostly giving away as it is, and fresh herbs, which I mostly don't use.)
And Baby L-O-V-E-D it! She laughed and squealed with joy for roughly the first 10 minutes! And my sister and I got tired of picking berries long before she got tired of riding up there watching us.
|Mama and Baby E - fun in the sun|
So naturally, after an hour of "Are we there yet? Why is this taking too long to get there? Are you still following Aunt Kayneen? How much longer?" we arrive to discover that there are not, in fact, any raspberries. There were green ones ready to ripen soon. But no ripe ones. Ughhhh. Luckily the girls didn't care, and were happy to pick strawberries.
After my sister had filled her buckets (she wanted enough to make jam) we all sat down at a little covered table area to eat. The girls (and I, ahem) had been eating berries as they picked, so they didn't eat much of their lunches.
|Picking the best for last!|
Baby E was feeling left out, and starting to fuss over everyone but her getting "real" foods. So my sister dared me to feed her a strawberry. The doc said not to until 12-months, but I'm more in the camp of believing that allergies come from delaying foods, rather than introducing too early. But that's just my opinion, and I usually just follow the doc's advice, especially since my husband
thinks rainbows shoot out of his ass respects the doctor's opinions and prefers that I wait until the doc has okayed new things first. Since my husband and I are a team, and we respect one another, I try to go along with his parenting decisions, even if I don't agree with them.
But since he wasn't the one stuck with a back-arching, trying to dive off my lap to reach sister's food, distressed baby, I had to make my own call.
Baby liked it okay, but wasn't all over it, like she is with her mashed foods. So I don't know if it was the flavor or not being able to just slorp it down like her mash that had her lose interest so soon. Now I'll have to remember to expose her to them periodically, since I've heard that introducing an allergy-likely food early then staying away from it for a while is more likely to cause it to develop into an allergy.