I drove to CT and was greeted by "Mimi" and Alec, who said "ORANGE!" as he showed me the flower in his hand. Orange is definitely his favorite color and word now (age 22 months).
Pushing light switches is a favorite activity. On, off, on, off, on... "Light!" he says again, and again.
Mateo enjoyed this boat in the pool at Mimi and Poppa's house in CT.
Mateo with Mimi, his paternal grandmother.
Alec stretches to make a basket
Alec liked to follow Hilda into the garden as she picked produce.
Alec liked to eat the tomatoes, especially the orange ones. "Orange!" They were the sweetest, too.
By midweek, Tonya had joined us. After another dip in the pool, we packed up for the drive to Holyoke, MA.
En route, we stopped at the Springfield Museums to enjoy the Dr. Seuss sculptures
Dr. Seuss (Theodor Seuss Geisel) was born in Springfield, MA. This Memorial Sculpture Garden is a popular place to visit.
We also went into the Springfield Museums briefly to see the LEGO exhibit. This one is called "Ideas."
"The Art of the Brick", an exhibit of work by Nathan Sawaya
The LEGO sculptures were displayed in the Museum of Fine Art. "The Art of the Brick"
This work is called "Constrained"
In the Science Museum, we found the "Brick Lab" -- a hands-on playground with Legos.
Mateo made a vehicle (foreground) and Tonya created a structure with flag.
Alec playing harmonica in our kitchen in Holyoke -- his first visit here.
Ken introduced Mateo to the slide
Ah! Relaxing in the hammock
I gave Mateo a ride down the slide (which was a bit too hot on the upper section for bare skin to touch).
Climbing the ladder
Down again... Mateo could slide by himself after the sunshine moved and the metal cooled down.
The next morning we walked a few blocks to Kennedy Park
Then we stopped at a neighbor's house and joined in the fun of making BUTTER by shaking cream in a jar.
Mateo and Alec enjoyed the tent-like structure covered in bean vines, while Kiernan displayed a Chinese bean he had just picked. We all had fun eating sections of this l-o-n-g bean.
Back in our house, Ken shared his box of old Matchbox cars and trucks -- a real treat.
Later we took Mateo on errands, including the Farmers Market, Holyoke City Hall (shown here), and a finishing factory, where we picked up the just-painted doors for our new cellar hatchway.
Back at home, we invited the neighbors to come play in the dirt (a by-product of our cellar hatchway project). Kiernan and Liam brought big trucks for earth moving; Ken contributed a truck from his childhood, and a tractor with trailer.
Lemonade on the steps as we observe the children playing on the dirt mountain.
Intent concentration on Ken's old trailer...
Mateo maneuvers a "treasure" into the "palace" that the boys have constructed.
Mateo on the mountain...
Liam helped spread the dirt around the new cinderblock bulkhead.
We enjoyed a picnic supper with our neighbors, the McManus family, after the afternoon of earth-moving.
Ken grilled steak and the fresh corn that we had bought at the Farmers Market that afternoon.
Grandsons in the perennial flower bed in our front yard.
Alpine strawberries beside our house. Tiny, but tasty.
Another morning at Kennedy Park.
A detour en route home from the park... Alec was captivated by a lawn sprinkler...
so I set up an old sprinkler at home. This is the same sprinkler I used to jump over as a kid!
Lunch at El Guanaco in South Hadley, MA, while Alec slept in the stroller.