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Posted: May 6th, 2006 | Author: | Filed under: Friends and Strangers, Miss Kate | 1 Comment »

The road trip with Kate was soooo great. From the moment we pulled away from the house it was clear we were on an adventure. The fact that it was a sunny weekday when the rest of the world was toiling over hot computers made it all the more liberating and indulgent. I intentionally didn’t pack a lot. Megan had some baby stuff of Ella’s she said we could borrow, and I figured what we didn’t have we could do without.

On the three-day sojourn Kate was a wonder-baby. She was so easy to be with and care for–she seemed incredibly centered and happy. On our drive home when she started to cry, I realized that she hadn’t cried for days. It sort of jarred me into the reality, “Oh yeah, she’s just a baby.”

It’s cool being able to take her out of her usual surroundings and routine and see her not only adapt, but thrive. She loved meeting people, and seeing new things–all the amazing foliage and birds around their house, Katie the dog. She made her own connections with people too. Despite their year age difference, Kate loved rolling around on the floor while Ella marched around her and handed her toys. And from the moment we pulled into the driveway, Megan’s baby-lovin’ dad, Rog, wisked Kate into his arms and chatted with, tickled, and smooched her up like she was his own grandchild. She loved the attention and genuine affection, and never once acted tentative or needed to check in with me.

It makes me sad for the parents who don’t want to take their kids away from home because they fear they won’t do well in a new environment. Sure, I was worried that her great sleep patterns were at risk, and she did wake up more than usual there. But Kate is all the better for having gotten to know the fabulous Heathcotes, for having slept in a foreign Pack ‘n Play in an incredibly quiet rural house, and for having bathed in an inflatable tub with a whole slew of different bath toys.

For all the time we already spend together, our little trip was a bonding experience. Oh how I love that little girl! (Yes, I’m planning to go off to college with her and live under her bed.)

As Rose from Chaparral House mutters–somewhat fragmentedly–when looking at Kate, “Not for a million dollars.” I’m not sure what the complete thought there is, but I assume it refers to Kate’s pricelessness. Indeed.

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One Comment on “Back Home”

  1. 1 lisa Hazen said at 11:12 am on May 8th, 2006:

    I love your blog, Kristen! Please mine our mom’s group for blog fodder so I can keep up from afar.

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