Rentrée

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I’m looking back at my last post, and I’m sure it’s no coincidence that I stopped blogging as soon as my 2yo’s crèche ended. He was supposed to have a 3-week summer vacation and then begin at a new crèche (the previous one was connected to my husband’s uni, and he graduated), but the little one didn’t get the fall placement that we were led to believe would happen. We found out last week.

Unlike public crèche, which is subsidized, full-time care at a private crèche costs more than a lot of private schools (36K/yr). The past week has been a mad rush of trying to find last minute, part-time child care alternatives. There has been much emailing, calling, and form-filling in French, and over the next week, I have several visits scheduled to check these places out and sign contracts. It’s been rather intense.

But the past month has also been full of new adventures. My parents came to visit for a week, and we discovered that one of the great things about a child getting older is that he can take real day trips now and appreciate them.

Before my parents arrived, we got some new furniture — a standing desk and armchair — and upgraded to a toddler room. That’s right! The small one now has a “big kid” bed. I also created a sensory/activity table for him and rearranged everything in his room so that he can access his books and toys by himself. He loves the changes, thank goodness, and his independence.

Once my parents arrived, we alternated local activities, like a lakefront picnic and trip to a park, with day trips. We took a panoramic train up Rochers-de-Naye (see the train tunnel at the base of the mountain pictured below?) where we had lunch at a restaurant that’s set in a cliff face.

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The views were pretty spectacular. We also saw marmots at Marmot’s Paradise. (Kiddo now does an amazing impression of a marmot eating grass.)

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Two days later, we took a boat across Lake Geneva to a corner of Switzerland that’s nearly in France. There, we visited the Swiss Vapeur Park, which has 18 mini trains that run through a beautifully landscaped park. My train-obsessed 2yo loved it, as did his grandparents.

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The park also has miniature replica Swiss landmarks, like the Château d’Aigle.

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After my parents left, we continued our summer outings and tried a couple of new pools, one of which has an awesome pirate ship with water cannons and slides.

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We finally made it to the Byron exhibit at the Château de Chillon.

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We came home with some Byron wine and the Bodmer Museum‘s Frankenstein catalogue, which is simply spectacular, and capped the night with G&T’s made with Doctor Polidori’s tonic (surprisingly awesome).

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We gave the child a hair cut. We went to outdoor and indoor parks/play areas. The indoor play area is kiddo’s new favorite — climbing structures, giant LEGOs, trampolines, and slides. Oh — and ice cream!

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Did I mention Andrew started a new job with Food52.com on August 1st? Super cool, but as you can see, it’s been a month.

Work has mostly been happening after hours, and I hope, as I get these childcare issues sorted, to post more often this fall. There are, after all, a couple of pretty cool things coming up…

Happy return!

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