Mother’s day is extra great with a new baby. Time is going so fast, Lucia is about six weeks and has outgrown all her newborn clothes. She is almost ten pounds now and is already wearing size three months.
Lucia tries on auntie Diana’s old dress.
Elena greeted me at 8am with a giant bouquet of flowers. “Happy Birthday! You are three already. Chocolate and flowers, I went to the grocery store.” I had to force myself to wake up to convince her not to eat the chocolates. Then she brought me an empty mint box with a green ribbon in it, “It’s a dinosaur.” Perfect.
Thank you for these beautiful flowers.
The dialogue is now a steady stream, and her favorite words currently are already, today and also. Really you can add them to any sentence. We were in the kitchen getting her breakfast. “I want a banana already.” Then she peeled it, demanded a knife to cut it into pieces, but refused to eat it.
Me: “You’re a pill.”
Elena: “I’m not a pillow.”
Then she takes another banana and holds it to hear ear, “I’m calling Felix today.” When life gives you squished bananas and a three-year old, make banana bread. Which we did.
But first, Grandma came to visit! She brought us American essentials like 2 pairs of crocs (very big and very small), Tillamook cheese, and a correctly sized bread pan (perfect for banana bread).
The week went fast, we did a lot of things, starting off with the fair at the Rheinaue eating ice cream and watching Elena ride flying cars, moving on to Lucia’s first doctor visit, a trip to Obi (the German home depot) and a little gardening. We got ambitious and headed to Maastrict, where we ate pie in an cafe and working flour mill that got its start in the 7th century — De Bisschopsmolen.
We also headed down the Rhine to the tiny town of Rolandsecke to visit the Arp museum, my new favorite place in Bonn. It was built in an old train station for Hans Arp, a dadaist and contemporary of Matisse and Picasso. If you are nearby, you have to check out the exhibit Rapunzel & Co, one of the best art exhibitions I have seen in years. The cafe is in the hall of the old train station, high ceilings, chandeliers, art deco, modern art. A perfect date night – just two years off.
Where are the hipsters and their cocktails?
Lucia spent lunch on a glowing bench.
Then we headed to Remagen to the Peace Museum – “the bridge at Remagen.” It’s housed in old towers of a bridge destroyed in WWII. When the American allies crossed the bridge it was a key turning point in the war. Veterans from both sides have met over the years in the museum, and it tells the local story of the war in an authentic way. Small – but very interesting and powerful. After my mom’s fourth visit to Bonn, I was happy we could discover these hidden gems so close to home.
We have had family here since Lucia was born. Now we are basically on our own, no magic elves picking up the kitchen while I’m breastfeeding, making sure there are vegetables with dinner, or taking Elena to preschool in the morning. (Thank you family!)
Motherhood continues, and it is such a gift. I am grateful for my two beautiful daughters and wonderful mother. Before she left, my mom gave me what I consider the ultimate compliment, “you have your own circus now.”
“Life began with waking up and loving my mother’s face.”
― George Eliot (Thanks Mom and WSUU)