The winter storm that hit the midwest last Thursday night has had some interesting effects. Apparently, half a million people in the greater St. Louis area lost power. Like with our big summer power outage, we were lucky once again to not lose power at our house. Our daycare, however, did on Friday. So, we had a snow day. Between my husband and I, we did not both have to stay home from work to care for Charlotte, but both of us did anyway.
We had a nice easy morning where I had time to bake a couple of loaves of bread. Our friend S. brought his son G. up to play and the two toddlers spent some time romping in the snow. Charlotte got to wear her new snowpants, which match her winter coat. I normally wouldn't have bought the snowpants, but the set cost about the same as the coats that had no snowpants, and I hoped that she'd get to wear them once before outgrowing them. It turned out to be a good deal. The kids came in and we all enjoyed some hot cocoa and lunch, our friends went home, and Charlotte took a much-needed nap. Friday afternoon, my husband and I tried to venture out to pick up a few odds and ends to complete the Christmas lights for our tree and outside our house, and found both Garden Ridge and KMart closed. Target, which was right across the street, was powered, and we found what we needed (as well as running into S. and G. who were out running errands too).
Saturday we attended a birthday party for one of my coworker's kids, who was turning 2. It was at a place called BounceU in Chesterfield, which had several inflatable bouncy toys, including a giant slide and an obstacle course. After an hour straight of running, climbing, jumping, and squealing, Charlotte (and my husband, who had to accompany the whole time) was quite exhausted. The party finished with pizza, cake, and presents. There were really a lot of other toddlers there, and the whole thing went pretty well for a 2-year old's birthday. It was more than we would have bothered with for such a young kid (we had a quiet, family-only "party" at home), but the kids definitely had fun.
When we got home, we set up and decorated our Christmas tree. Charlotte was very serious about the whole ornament-hanging part, and kept digging out more and more ornaments to put on the tree. We probably have enough to do 2 or 3 trees because I change my mind on colors every couple of years (currently, we have blues, gold, and silver and a sort of snowflake theme). We had to cut her off (and move some of the glass ornaments up out of her reach after she discovered that some had jingle bells and started testing all of them by wildling swinging them around their hangers).
Charlotte slept in until nearly 9am Sunday morning after such a full day. Sunday was pretty relaxed, with church, lunch and playtime with her aunt & uncle N & S. They babysat while my husband and I did a little Christmas shopping. We drove to the closest Toys R U (which is not close at all), and found them running on generator power. The place was packed, so I guess it made good business sense to be open through the blackout, but its the first time I can remember having to zip my winter coat up inside a store to keep warm (they were funneling all their power towards minimal lighting and cash registers, not the heating system). Charlotte actually cried harder when N&S left for home last night than she did when her daddy and I left to go shopping earlier in the day. Unfortunately, the kid is starting to realize that she can't see all her favorite people whenever she wants (she's also been asking to go to Grandma's house a lot lately...the fact that the Grandma's are 4 or 6 hours away by car doesn't really sink in yet).
Today, back to normal. Daycare's open. We're at work. We need another snow storm.