Saturday, May 21, 2016

the kids are here

Today is the day my younger girl and her husband fly into Paris. Our focus is on their early arrival. The excitement is palpable!

I dash out to get a breakfast baked goods -- oh, the usual, of course: at Les Gourmandises d'Eiffel. (Only I don't quite put myself together as well as, say this morning shopper. Tomorrow morning, on goes the lipstick!)

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Let's feature the bakery's cakes today:

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Though of course, my purchase is from this shelf:

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And berries at the green grocer's (yep, Harry Cover).

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Here's the check out counter, where evidence of early morning delivery/accounting, along with many cups of espresso abounds.

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And no sooner does Snowdrop eat her breakfast (oh! which do I eat first??)...

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...and is bathed and dressed, then boom! Her aunt and uncle arrive!

Is that really you?? All the way from Minneapolis??

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We ask Snowdrop to show the new arrivals the Eiffel Tower. She runs excitedly toward the window. Here! Look here, look here, look here!

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We make plans for the day: the youngest couple will rest a while, Snowdrop's dad will work and mom, Snowdrop and grandma will run an errand or two, then go to a new park we think may be nice for the little girl.

We can go out now???

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Errands include picking up a new stroller toy (the one I brought over was at some moment taken, possibly by some child).

How about that mouse? Let's call her souris.

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We also stop at a children's clothing store. It is so warm today that Snowdrop has shunned tights. We need a diaper cover.

This is what children do when their parents spend too long in the store:

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Thankfully, our errand is a quick one.

The park we choose is just across the Place des Invalides. I've passed it a million times and never once considered how ideal it might be for my granddaughter. Yes, you do look at places with new eyes when you travel with young ones.

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We thought she'd enjoy the sand box here, but she surprises us by preferring a stroll. It's a gated park and so there is no danger of her running out on the street. She walks...

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she runs through grassy areas...

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She is joyous and appreciative of these moments where she can do whatever her heart tells her.

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Can I just put a smiley face here? Your run, Snowdrop, is precious.

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We come back in time for her nap. The young set goes out in search of sandwiches for lunch (after studying carefully which bakery might deliver the best ones, of course; we are like that). They come back with pastries as well.

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Then comes the big walk: how is it that the young couple can do this, given the long flight, the lack of sleep, the tiredness?

We do it anyway. Starting here:

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We cut across to the right bank and suddenly we are part of a huge wave of humanity. There's no escape. Or is there? We find the carousel. (Or are you of the opinion that it should be referred to as a merry-go-round?)

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We continue. Snowdrop is thrilled to have these two guide her through the tumult.

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And then to have her dose of freedom.

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Joy is running where your spirit pulls you.

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Relief is having other help you master the tough steps in life.

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My two young families.

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Views we pass along the way...

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And now it is evening and we are all supposed to go out to dinner, but Snowdrop is feeling a bit under the weather and so the parents stay home with her and I go out with just the youngest couple. Perhaps it is at it should be -- after all, I haven't seen them for such a long time. We eat at a wonderful place -- Au Passage, clear across town. Small plates, young crowd, delicious food, not trendy for show but showy nonetheless -- how do these people do such artful stuff??? (This is our side carrot dish...)

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We're nearly done now -- the day is so late for the youngest couple of course, but too for the older set (that would be me). We stop at just one place in this neighborhood that has a mixture of many trendy and less trendy places  -- Pop In -- where we have one last drink before returning home.

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Oh, the evening doesn't end there. Snowdrop's parents are eager for stories and updates and we all have an exhilarating time recalling, exaggerating, sharing. And now I am the only one up and you have to forgive me the lack of editing because really, we all should have been asleep many many hours ago.