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Sometimes I get so caught up in my routine that I struggle to take note of the small moments that make one day different from the next. Here are just a couple little steps we have taken recently that I felt were worth reflection:

1. Chip recognizes the numbers 1 – 10 and a handful of letters.

Now, this might not sound all that special, he´s 3 and goes to nursery school, so I suppose he was bound to pick this up somewhere. Certainly not at home, we have some puzzles with letters and numbers but I have about 4 precious hours with him from the time the bus drops him off at my office till its bedtime. So I was more than pleasantly surprised when playing with my contact lense case in the bathtub he pipped up “Look, it´s a 7″(OK, it was the L, but still, an upside down L looks a hell of a lot like a 7) and then “and that´s an R.” Huh…. who knew…. I decided to see if this went any further than these two letters, so I pulled out the abovementioned alphabet puzzle. Well, the K was called an R (close, but not quite) and the D was labelled a B (still, they do sound alike) and the P and the L were correctly identified. Still a long way to go, but the first step down the road to literacy has been taken and considering my lifelong love of books, that is worth celebrating!

2. Nicky is almost crawling….

Since it seems like just last week he figured out how not to fall over when sitting, this is a big deal too. Especially since a mobile baby means child-proofing the house. And that means the WHOLE house, since we are a distracted bunch and babies move faster than you´d ever expect. Electric sockets have already been covered, baby gates for stairs ordered (though not yet installed) and now the constant hunt for the very tiny object he just found on the floor and has now put in his mouth begins…. is it a pebble, a piece of food or a toy? Only the very fast and the brave of finger will ever know… it also means I will have an up close and personal daily reminder of just how dirty my floors really are (gotta love those light grey heathered sweats, pastel and yes, even WHITE pyjamas and all  other really cute and impractical baby clothes I have managed to accumulate.) Why don´t my “no-dry clean, no iron” rules for my own clothes extend to “no pastels for the baby?” just another one of life´s little mysteries…

3. One is fun but two is twice as nice

Now that Nicky is 9 months old, he is extremely social. Whether it´s beaming smiles at old ladies on the bus or checking out the other kids at the playground, he is alert and considers himself to be part of the group. That means major tears when he is left behind and constant glances at Chip to see “what he´s doing”. It also means the boys are starting to play together. Whether it´s Chip making raspberries with his mouth and Nicky laughing hysterically or splashing contests in the bathtub (and yes, let them soak the bathroom if it means they are both laughing at the same time, nothing could make me happier). I don´t remember when I started playing with my younger sister, though we were about these ages but I do know she is one of my very bestest friends and I am so pleased my boys are starting out on a similar journey together!

4. Last one over the dune´s a rotten egg!

yes indeed, we are headed to the Atlantic coast this weekend for our first family trip to the beach. Hard to believe that Chip is 3 and has only seen the ocean once, in the dead of winter when he was 18 months old. While it is not yet summer, some cold salty air and windswept sandcastles along with some fried calamari is all I need. We haven´t been anywhere since our trip in May and I love packing up the car and the family for an adventure. M and I travel well together (except my inevitable breakdowns in airports, but that´s a story for another day), ok, maybe I should say we travel well together by car and have completed some major hauls in over the years (Paris to Florence on our honeymoon, Acapulco to Puerto Escondido, BA – Santa Rosa de Calamuchita a number of times) and we always get along, for what that´s worth. Muri is celebrating her mother´s birthday this weekend, so it´s just us and the little boys and I really can´t wait for a change of scenery, the chance to have someone else make my bed and best of all, NO DISNEY JR OR DISCOVERY KIDS FOR 48 HOURS! Yessirree Bob, a weekend away means no TV, no FB, no emails, no external stimulous or technology whatsoever. I have packed the etch a sketch and am leaving the ipad home. How´s that for crazy??