Monday, July 4, 2011

New Thing(s) #3: Camping, Quacking & Quality Time

...And we're back! A very Happy Fourth of July to all my American friends today! I'm a day late to update this because being outdoors in the fresh air, surrounded by friends and enjoying the sun is simply exhausting.

When we last left off, there was drama in Highchairville because...oh wait, that's the toddler soap opera I'm writing called "The Bib Is Not Optional". When I last posted, I said we would be doing an activity on Thursday before we left to go camping. This was a Big Fat Lie. I INTENDED to do things with the kids but in the mad dash to get everything done before we left it didn't happen. Auntie K and Grandpa each came over during the day and spent quality time with the kids so I could get everything accomplished before Daddy came home. I soothe the sting of the New Thing Fail by telling myself that the Little People were very happy to play with their auntie and their grandfather.

Our very long weekend away was wonderful. It was a chance to slow down, disconnect from the world and spend time with our Little People and some good friends. It was also a chance for the Little People to do some new things. They have been camping before, but this weekend I tried to find time to stop and play with them. We spent time on an old comforter spread out on the grass, playing with toys. We went on a family walk with Daddy and played in the park. We spent early mornings snuggled together before getting our day started. There was lots of singing and laughing and ample application of sunscreen.

Instead of going on and on about everything we did, I am only going to mention one because I think it made an impact on both Little People. New Thing Number Three is all about Peepers.

When we got wind that someone a few campsites down had brought a duck along with them I knew immediately that we had to go check this out. A DUCK?! Who brings a duck camping?! As a matter of fact, who even has a pet duck?! ?! ?! ?! We headed out in search of the elusive duck...and found him, walking (strutting? waddling? what do you call how a duck moves?) around his campsite. LP1 spotted him first and immediately ran towards him. I stopped her because I was slightly nervous (I have now come to the conclusion that I am basically terrified of all new creatures unless reassured that they don't want to see if I'm tasty). After explaining to the duck owner that we had heard they had a duck and the kids wanted to see it, the very nice owner fetched the duck and brought him over for the kids to meet.

                                Peepers...a happy duck with a great name!

It was obvious that Peepers had been around Little People before. He was friendly and very tame. He nibbled at clothes and fingers and shoes but it didn't hurt (although again, I was terrified at first). Our Little People were definitely very interested in him. LP1 was soon petting him and hugging him and trying to pick him up. LP2 was holding onto Daddy's hand with one hand and reaching out for Peepers with the other. They were fascinated with his white feathers, his webbed feet and his yellow bill. Peepers' human family were also used to people wanting to come see him and were very accommodating.

I don't know that I've ever wanted a pet duck before but after seeing how gentle and happy Peepers was...I would definitely duck-sit for a weekend!

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