We raised caterpillars again this year. Every day the girls would check their progress first thing in the morning. Lily couldn't believe how big they got. They formed their chrysalises while we were in Charlotte, but she actually got to see one emerge as a butterfly, which was really exciting. We kept them for a day before setting them free in the backyard. Little hands, but littler butterfly.
As we set each of the five butterflies free, Lily told them "My treehouse is right over there on top of the swingset. You can live there if you want."
In a grand tradition, spanning 6 years now, we got to spend Spring Break with Auntie, who this year had to fly all the way from Amsterdam. True, she was here mostly because of a dear friend's wedding in Charlotte, but we still got to do lots of our favorite things and did I mention we got to do them with AUNTIE??!!?? Yay! Spring Break oh-Eleven! Woo Hoo! Except if you're Lily, in which case it's still Spring Break oh-Ten, because she likes to say that more.
Anyway, Auntie arrived from Amsterdam, via Detroit (of course) late on Friday night. So late that the girls were long since asleep. But when Auntie went in to whisper goodnight to Lily at 1am, the Bug woke up right away, said "Auntie!", gave her a hug and went right back to sleep. Until "Seven-zero-zero" on Saturday morning and then it was GAME! ON! Wake up Auntie...
Auntie came bearing gifts... a tulip pen for Lily and birthday presents for Rory.
The nightgown is one of her gifts - she insisted on putting it on. RIGHT! NOW!!! The tiniest wooden shoes ever made. "Wuh shooooes!" A book? "Where the Wild Things Are" in Dutch! (Love this face!) Rockin' her new nightgown and new shoes. Then, it was road trip time. Us girls left Daddy (on his birthday weekend, no less!) to work on the bathroom and we headed to Charlotte for some fun with Grammy and Bumpa, and Mandy's wedding. And, because that wasn't quite enough fun, there were also visits from Auntie Ann, Uncle Dave and Loren from Rochester, and cousin Amy drove up from Columbia, SC. Rory loves a good roadtrip! At Grammy & Bumpa's house, the girls got down to some very serious playing. Like making capes out of tissue paper. And making cousin Amy dress up in old dance costumes. And sharing animal crackers with Auntie Ann. And Grammy. But not Bumpa, though he did get some snuggles. While the girls were having all of that fun, Mommy was Auntie's "plus one" at the wedding. The big girls had almost as much fun as the little girls! A visit to Charlotte isn't complete without a trip to the Pancake House. My girls do love pancakes - plain, blueberry, strawberry, pecan, or chocolate chip - bring it! Rory maintained her mini-Lily status by finding and browsing a copy of "The Great Gatsby". (Lily did this too, with the same copy, at about the same age.) Oh, and now, in addition to all the other toys, there is a doll house on the porch! Why would Lily ever want to leave? (Grammy is a diabolic genius!) The girls love Grammy's super-cool car. After three fun-filled days in Charlotte, we headed back to Raleigh. But no Spring Break would be compete without a trip to Chapel Hill, so we stopped for a run around the quad. Rory wasn't entirely willing to pose for pictures in "Chappa! Hiiiii!". But she did enjoy chaising squirrels and trying desperately to "Pet! him!!!"
Lily was able to find "All twelve of my favorite trees!" (This girl is hilarious, you guys!) so she was totally willing to pose.
And pose. And pose! Even when the sun was a little too bright. Lily was thrilled to discover that the Old Well is a water! fountain! As was Rory, of course. Mommy & Auntie posed nicely. Lily and Rory... less so. Best friends, walking across the quad... No trip to Chapel Hill would be complete without a stop a Breadman's for "pancakes as big as my HEAD!" (according to Lily).Rory had a blast building towers from jelly packets. And when she got some syrup on her elbow, she totally had the solution. And was quite pleased with herself. Lily stuck to the more conventional fork-licking. After all that fun, Lily and Auntie spent "quiet time" snuggled up on Auntie's bed, watching movies on the iP*d. Later, the girls helped Auntie take Lucy out for her afternoon exercise. Both Rory and Lucy are thinking, "Hey - this thing doesn't work!" Lily showed Auntie how she likes to run up and down the hill. And then, there was the construction of a dirt road in the driveway, thanks to all the debris from the crazy storms in Raleigh while we were gone. This was serious. hard. work.
It started as Lily's project, but somehow Rory ended up in charge.
That night, Mommy took Daddy out for his belated birthday dinner while the girls got to hang out with their favorite babysitter, and Rory *finally* got some of Daddy's birthday cake.The next day, we met some friends at Lily's favorite park. She calls it the "Fall-y Slide Playground" because when she was two she fell on the twisty slide. And yet, it's her favorite. While we were there, she built this birdhouse. And she and Rory hogged the baby swings. And the three of us played on this silly swing. I left the girls with Auntie at the restaurant for 10 minutes while I ran to the grocery store and this is what happened... Silly faces! While Auntie and Mommy were getting our traditional spring break mani/pedis, the girls got to be chauffeured around by Daddy and the bike trailer. We're calling this 'practice for Amsterdam', when we'll get to bike everywhere. On Auntie's last night with us, we had dinner outside at the Irish Pub across the street from our neighborhood. Rory stole fried pickles. And Lily & Auntie snuggled. On our last day, Auntie and Mommy got up at 5am to wait in line so that Auntie could buy an iP*d. The first store sold out by 8am, so we headed to a second store. We came home empty-handed. And it was a cold, rainy, dreary day, so we spent it being silly in front of the fire. And packing. But taking frequent snuggle breaks. When we got in the car to head for the airport, with poor Auntie squeezed in between the carseats, both girls held on tight, "to keep you safe". At the airport, Rory was all too happy to help Auntie with her suitcase. This is adorable. You'd never know that moments later Lily, Auntie and Mommy would all be crying pathetically as Rory ran circles around us laughing maniacally. The Roo is good for comic relief in situations like this. Lily has inherited Mommy's (over) sensitivity and goodbyes are really hard for her.
It was a short trip, and extra hard to say goodbye because of it, but we feel so lucky that we got to have one more year of all our favorite, silly spring-break-isms. We miss you already, Auntie!