For many of us, Memorial Day may be our first real holiday weekend of the year. And to have it at the end of May, when nearly half the year is over before we get our first taste of a short break, is almost cruel. In fact, when I was growing up in Malaysia, we had at least 14 federal holidays, not counting the state holidays that would increase that number by at least two to three more days. By the end of May, we would have had six days off. And now I’ve traded them in for this ONE measly day.
Pre-baby, Memorial day meant a break from routine and nothing more. We either went to parties and visited family or just stayed home, but the point was, we did absolutely NOTHING. Not even laundry. We took the word “break” very seriously. Post-baby, this break comes in the form of sleep. No, Little Miss still wakes up at her usual 7:30am (yaaaaay…), but when we’re awake, we are constantly on the go. With temperatures in the 80’s, it’s our first real taste of summer, and we take full advantage of it. We eat outside, play outside and even entertain outside.
What’s Memorial Day weekend without a BBQ with friends? So that’s what we do. Except Little Miss has so much fun she refuses to sleep, delaying her normal bedtime of 7:00 to 10:00pm! We are astonished by her energy but she is probably intoxicated by the heady scent of grilled meat and citronella, and does everything she can to fight sleep. With so much going on, she doesn’t want to miss out. And who can blame her?
The next day, we pack a picnic and head to a park by the river. We pass a few playgrounds and with each, she exclaims “Pawp!”(Park) “Size!”(Slide) “Sching!”(Swing) in her broken Toddlerese. When we finally reach the one of our destination, she goes to town. There are people all around us, playing volleyball or bags, BBQing, celebrating with balloons or just enjoying the shade from trees older than our city. Once Little Miss has her fill of the size and sching, she joins us for a bite, feasting on leftovers from the BBQ.
For the first time this holiday weekend, we finally take our break on our picnic blanket, reading or just drinking in the summer with our eyes closed, interrupted only by a toddler whose brave, barefooted explorations result in a giggling fit. But we also know that she is mostly giddy from waking up in the morning or from naps to both parents being home these past few days. We can tell that this rare treat is her favorite part of the holiday.
Because it is ours too.
however far she goes, she always comes back
She’s absolutely amazing.