I’ll Be Home for Christmas

We left at 12:40 a.m. and three hours later, it was morning in Seattle. Clara slept on all three flights and again on the drive from St. Louis to Quincy. She just needed a couple laps to sleep on and a few international airports to run around. Every layover, Clara took a few mad dashes from Hudson News to the Chiles, Too.

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If she wasn’t playing tag-Dad-you’re-it-again, she insisted on pushing the diaper bag around in her stroller.

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After a briefly delayed flight on an “express” plane—the euphemism for “small,” we landed in the Midwest, greeted by plains and arches and small town cautionary tales.Christmas 2011 047

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Yesterday we took Clara to her Great-Grandma and Great-Grandpa Moore’s house. She ate three servings of macaroni and cheese with Grandma’s special Velveeta sauce. She played with toys manufactured in the 1950’s, but the day peaked with the Gator ride around the farm. At first she wasn’t sure if this green and yellow ride was her thing.

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Safe with Dad driving and soon hugged tightly on Mom’s lap, she set off to see lakes full of catfish and big black and white cows. At the sight of the first cow, she uttered a diaphragmatic “MOOO!”.

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After the ride, she was all smiles. It’s been a sunny 35 degrees since we’ve been in Quincy and we’ve been able to go on a long walk every day.

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After her ride, we visited some more and got a few cute grins out of Clara on cue.

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Back at Grandma and Grandpa’s, Clara made herself at home and tromped around in whatever shoes she could find.

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She’s enjoyed basket rides from Grandpa Alan . . .

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and playing puzzles with Grandma Nancy.

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The best thing we did to prepare for this trip is not buy Clara any toys for a year. She’s discovered battery-operated guitars, mega block sets, and doll houses equipped with day beds and grill sets.

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The best discovery has been her cousin Sophia and her domestic prowess. We’ve eaten a lot of cookies.

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She also can’t stop hugging her cousin Owen and we think it’s those gorgeous blue eyes.

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It’s been a great visit and it’s not even Christmas yet:)

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