Over Labor Day weekend, we had a wonderful week-long visit from Grandma Patty and Grandpa Bob. Although my mom came up for Ellie’s birthday, it’s been a while since my dad made the trek to the Pacific Northwest.
Ellie took full advantage of having a completely willing playmate and made Grandma Patty engage in her two favorite things OVER and OVER. Why I didn’t take pictures of this, I have no idea. Sorry, my bad.
The first is playing doctor. The adult is the doctor and Ellie is the nurse (so far Ellie has never wanted to be the doctor). She brings a stuffed animal to the doctor to get checked out. She describes their various aliments (often boo boos or tummy aches) then the doctor checks out the animal, listens to their heart with the stethoscope then takes a temperature or gives medicine as needed. Hugs and kisses always follow. This can quite literally go on for hours (until she has run out of animals or the “doctor” is no longer seeing patients). I admit that I can’t do this for more than 30 minutes at a time, but Mom played doctor like a champ every day for hours.
The other favorite playtime activity is a little less understood by anyone but Ellie. It consists of packing up everything in sight into any and every bag or container Ellie can find. Having six or seven large shopping bags each containing an assortment of legos, tupperware, pots, books, trains, letters, animals, blankets, (clean) diapers, plastic eggs, shoes, chalk, puppets, balls, toy food, tea cups, and anything else that strikes her fancy (or we have accidentally left on the table), is not unusual. All of this packing is done in preparation for the bus ride to the Marching Place. Only rarely does the bus ever arrive to pick up the travelers (then it’s the couch), and we’ve yet to ever make it to the Marching Place. Ellie is completely elusive when describing the Marching Place (and heaven forbid if you actually try to march because this sends her into a tizzy).
Grandpa Bob valiantly supported the effort by keeping out of the way and occasionally reading a story to the tired nurse/packer.
The two days that Ellie was in daycare, we were blessed with great weather and had a few adult-only adventures. One day we took a 30 minute seaplane ride over puget sound and downtown. Later, we checked out the new location of Elliot Bay Bookstore, had a yummy lunch, and a visited the Ballard Locks. The other adventure day, the grandparents and I took the ferry to Bainbridge Island to the Bloedel Reserve: beautiful and highly recommended. We had a wonderful time walking through the reserve, then had lunch and pastries in Poulsbo before heading home. (You can see pictures from these days on my Flickr photostream.)
One day, the grandparents and I took Ellie to the zoo. Once we got into the rhythm (look for 45 seconds then move on) we all had a great time. No loitering allowed when you go to the zoo with Ellie.
Another day, we had a nice family dinner at Nana and Papa’s (Janet and Larry) house. Lisa, Scott, and Emma were there too. When Ellie and Emma were supposed to be napping, we discovered them huddled on the bed amidst all the animals, having a serious whispered conversation. Needless to say, they were very much awake.