We did it! Our first transatlantic with Boone. And as with the other holidays we’ve taken with him, he’s come back all grown up. We’re not sure if our holidays always manage to coincide with particular developmental stages or if it’s the holidays themselves that do it, but he usually comes back with a swagger, and this time, it’s American. To that end, he doesn’t do highchairs, or boosterseats, or even our laps anymore but prefers to “shit” (that would be sit) in a chair; this was slightly problematic on the plane when he didn’t understand why we had seats to ourselves but he didn’t. He also doesn’t do the potty anymore. As the American toilets are nice and small (no big drop splash for the Americans, no siree, Bob!), we just sat him on there. He was happy with this scenario until the day we were out at a petting farm and joy of joys, he got to do his first wee outside. I don’t know if it was the cold air whipping around his arse or the proximity of trees but he’s now sold on the whole outdoor toileting thing. After that fateful day, standing on the toilet seat and aiming in to the toilet bowl like a man (an American man!) is how it’s done.
Also, it’s a phoneme explosion around these parts, all possessive and plural ‘s’ here, final consonants there. And, whoa, two-word combinations and full sentences! So, now we have two types of milk with a very clear ‘k’: there’s “milk” which is my milk and then there’s “soy milk” (ha! that’s our little vegan). We get asked “wherizit” all the time and the other night, I was told “Mama lie down whi me.” Try to resist that one.
Anyway, back to the holiday. It was great and here’s a barrage of photos to prove it.
So, we did a little shopping but funnily enough, not as much shopping as we thought we would. Every time before we go to America, we start making these long lists of all the things we need to get while we’re there, reasoning all the while that there’s so much more choice and that things are so much cheaper over there. And every time we’re in America—or, specifically, after two minutes of being in Target and being overwhelmed by red—we decide that we don’t need these things after all.
We thought that Boone was mad about dogs—turns out, he’s just as mad about cats, which is a good thing as Leah has four! “Tats! Haallo” was a constant refrain and, oh, they do such funny things! They lick themselves, scratch the sides of their heads in a hilarious back and forth motion with their hind legs, they swish their fluffy tails, and try to get a moment’s peace in the sunshine. Naturally, Boone’s decided to take up all of these habits, in addition to crawling around, meowing, and asking for “teats” (treats.)
Boone was also mad about Dominic. It’s a pity that the photo is a bit dark but it shows just a little of the close to hear-breaking adoration Boone has for his big cousin. He followed him around everywhere, shouting “Duhduh, Duhduh!,” much to Dominic’s annoyance, and secret pleasure. Underneath all the eleven-year-old bluster and renditions of these songs, Dominic was just the sweetest. On our last morning, when we had to pack, and try to eat breakfast, and not forget anything, Dominic said to a crying Boone “Hey, Boone, let’s go see the cats,” effectively taking over the childcare so that we could have our breakfast. We nearly cried in appreciation. And those armchairs? Dominic and I spent many an hour there, each of us on our respective devices, interspersing our addictions to video games and blogs with little chats here and there. Who says technology interferes with quality family time?!
Of course, it goes without saying that Boone fell head over heels in love with Leah, or “Leelee.” She showered him with love and affection and he just soaked it right up. We shouldn’t have been so surprised when Leah asked him “you want to go to Starbucks with me?” and his prompt reply was: “Yeah! Buh-bye!” He barely waved at us as he marched out the door. Dumped!
Boone also developed quite the soft spot for Juan, as did we. We were delighted to finally get to meet him.
And we got to meet Jack! Such a cutie.
Our other fun times included:
Joseph having a very hard time trying to open a bottle of bubbles, and then Boone actually blowing the bubbles.
Going to the aforementioned wee-outside farm.
Going for frozen yoghurt, where Boone had his first taste of Oreos. Mmmm! On tasting the frozen yoghurt his verdict was: “cold.” However, he did love the macaroni he had at the vegan restaurant we went to. Not pictured, but awesome.
Heading in to DC for the, ahem, cherry blossom festival. The weather was Irish-bad, all grey and overcast with no light, and it was cold, so very, very cold. The cherry blossoms hadn’t a chance of blossoming, nor did the festivities. There was nothing for it but to sit in a near empty beer tent and eat overpriced french fries and “enjoy” the band that was managing to kill (and I mean kill, as in slaughter) every single chart-topping hit of the past three years. But despite all that, we had a great time, because, wait for it . . . here come the cheese with a zee! . . we were together.
That last picture would be Boone rallying against the American government.
So, here we are, back on our soggy little island, all jet-lagged and worse for wear. ‘Til next time!