Happy happy Monday!
If you missed my $100 Nordstrom Gift Card Giveaway from Friday, you can see it here. There is one more day for your chance to enter and win!
Well…today, is the first day of school.
Right now, my babies are in kindergarten and first grade (and I’m in the fetal position). I’m going to recap their first day tomorrow…but just know, my mama heart is both excited and sad right now. I’m excited because they both were ready and looking forward to this new school year…but I’m sad because I really love spending the day with my kiddos and I miss them when they’re not home.
The summer just went by too fast.Last night, when I was tucking my two big kids into bed, I started crying because y’all…it went by too quickly. I know there are a lot of young mamas out there with small kiddos at home and listen to me when I tell you…it is going to go by too fast. Stop what you’re doing, kiss those sweet babies and know that one day very soon, you’re going to wish you could be right back there again. If I could go back and have my one year old and infant again, I would in a heartbeat. I’m excited about this new chapter for Kensington and Smith but I’m sad too…because this last chapter was so sweet. Kiss your babies young mamas. Before you know it, they’ll be off in kindergarten too.
Some vacation pics for your Monday :).
Well, we woke up on Day 9, drove to the Geneva Airport, returned our rental car and flew to Paris. Oui, oui!
The first stop we made after arriving in Paris was the Eiffel Towel (of course!). All three of my kids were super pumped about this! Here we are standing underneath it :).
A few things that I feel should be noted about the Eiffel Tower. This was our first time to take kiddos up there, so we didn’t know what the protocol/etiquette was for strollers. I would say that typically, there is a place to put strollers when you do things like this…but unfortunately for us, the Eiffel Tower was not such a place. We should have left them in the hotel room…but…we didn’t know that, so after standing in line for one hour and five minutes, we were asked to fold them and go up. Two parents, three kids and two folded strollers up on the Eiffel Tower. Boo. (Side note, strollers were our saving grace at The Louvre…see below for that.) We had the best time up there…but if I would have known there wasn’t a place for strollers, I would have left them in the hotel. During our wait in line, Ashby napped :).
Well look at us up on the second deck of the Eiffel Tower :). (We opened a stroller for Ashby to sit a minute while we looked.) We were there in the evening (we got in line a little before 5:00 and then stayed until after 8:00.)
On the Eiffel Tower wearing her Eiffel Tower earrings :). She’s been wearing these earrings for several months now, so it was fun to actually be on the tower wearing them. (They’re from Stella & Dot, you can see them here.)
We made it to the very top!
In the Eiffel Tower gift store buying a little Eiffel Tower to take home.
That was Day 9…traveling to Paris and seeing the Eiffel Tower :).
This is how our morning started :). Three dressed kids watching some cartoons before heading out.
Yes, please. Anything pastry-like first thing in the morning along with coffee. My peeps were getting us the good stuff.
Hey there Notre Dame! We visited first thing in the morning.
After Notre Dame, we headed up to Monmartre for lunch and to get a painting or two. The kids each picked out an Eiffel Tower painting for their rooms and then had their picture taken with the artist. They talked about this part for the rest of the trip! They are so proud of their little pieces of art.
Ashby wanted her own picture with the sweet artist :).
Five Nutella Crepes please. #wedontsharecrepes #noway #justsogood
Curb sittin’ and crepe eatin’ with my favorite big kids.
All Kensington wanted from Paris was a beret…a pink one just like Grace (her American Girl doll). She was pumped with this one!
We wrapped up Monmartre and then headed to the Arc de Triomphe before dinner.
And then we ate dinner with a spectacular view. Just a girl and her Eiffel Tower.
So, in Switzerland we rented a car but in Paris…we walked everywhere :).
On the first day, we used the Metro (subway system) one time from our hotel to the Eiffel Tower and that was it. After we saw the Eiffel Tower, we walked back and decided that would be our mode of transportation…our feet. We just felt like we missed too much in the subway, so we walked A LOT! A few times, we took a cab (like to Versailles) but it was almost always just walking (which helped me justify the two crepes a day…).
Speaking of Versailles…
Oy. This day was not our favorite. I mean…I hate to say that, but keepin’ it real, one day has to be your least favorite, right?! The problem was…we tried visiting Versailles in August (our mistake!). The other times I have been to Versailles, the wait to get inside was like 15 minutes…on this day, we waited OVER TWO HOURS. Uggggggg. The line to get tickets was super short…but the wait to actually get inside looked like this…
…there were 10 rows of people all the way across. Our whole day was dedicated to Versailles, so we waited.
Thumb wrestling helped to pass the time :). We also worked on learning the 50 States. Do you know the song Fifty Nifty United States? Well, I learned it in the 3rd grade and now (thanks to this long wait), my kids are getting the hang of it too. #desperatetimes
The wait to get into Versailles wasn’t the worst part…it was how many people were inside there once you were let in. This is us waiting to get into one room. I mean…it was ridiculous. You couldn’t see anything and were just pushed from one room to the next (literally pushed by the crowds). At one point, sweet Smith said he just wanted to be able to stand still and look…but you couldn’t stand still because the masses were pushing you forward.
We found a brief moment of non-pushing and took a pic :).
We made the most of our day but when we left and headed to dinner, I think everyone was relieved.
Hey there cuties!
On our walk to dinner, we saw that famous tower in the background and decided to take a picture. Ashby had a costume change because she spilled something on her dress ;). I think red might be her color!
The restaurant passed out these silly glasses to my kids. They were excited!
And then we finished off our day with…a crepe by the Eiffel Tower.
A picture walking back to the hotel. Pretty much every time we saw the Eiffel Tower, we felt the need to take a picture :).
So our trip to The Louvre on Day 12 was MUCH better than the day before!! We showed up that morning and…saw a long line. However, as soon as we got in the back of the line, a nice Louvre employee walked up to us and said we could go right in because we had strollers.
We get to cut because we have strollers? What? Yes!!!! There was an American guy standing in front of us who turned around and said he would pay me a million bucks for one of my strollers. #tempting
Apparently, if you have a stroller at The Louvre, you not only get to go right in, but you get to use private elevators located throughout. We would be walking from one room to the next and Louvre employees would stop us and ask if we needed directions to the nearest private elevator…and then when we got there, another employee would open it for us. Who knew????? It was awesome!
My kiddos loved their audio guides and we spent all day checking everything out!
This face. I would look down and see her looking up asking for a kiss. Goodness! This girl knows exactly how to MELT MY HEART!
The A/C provided us with some entertainment too :).
There she is…the Mona Lisa :).
Such a successful day touring The Louvre!! Eiffel Tower, no stroller…The Louvre, YES, stroller!
Whew. Those were days 9 through 12! To see days 13 & 14, click here.
To see Days 1-3, click here.
Days 4 & 5, click here.
Days 6-8, click here.
I’m off to make my kiddos some Butterscotch Maple No Bake Cookies for after their first day of school (their request).
And don’t forget, it’s Meal Planning Monday…
…click here to see my five simple suppers for your week!