Sunday, March 1, 2009

Under the Tuscan Sun?

Under the Tuscan Sun?
What the hell? Its raining. Apparently, it is forecast to rain all week. I left the grey drizzle of England twenty years ago for sweet desert warmth, where the rain is limited in the winter and dramatic and entertaining in the monsoons of the summer. Now, I'm back to drizzle. At least it is amid impressive settings, warm company and delectable food.

We went to Parco delle Cascine this morning, before it started to rain. This is Firenze's huge public park to the west of downtown. It is impressive in size and if it weren't for the screaming child some foreigners (us) brought with them, quite serene. Just don't look too carefully for syringes, this park has a deserved sullied reputation for its night life.

I'm not well equipped for rain. I think I forgot my rain jacket even. Hell, I've barely used a raincoat in the past twenty years. So if it is going to rain for the next week or so, I'm going to have to get creative about what to do with a toddler, in a small apartment, with few of our usual toys and things. Any ideas? Those with kids, what do you do? I know we can still go outside, just looking for some inside options too.

This afternoon we pulled out one of the surprise activity bags that Kerry sent with us for the plane. Kerry, you're brilliant. I love these activity bags. Simple idea, a paper bag with some objects guaranteed to make a toddler squeal with delight. We've opened most of these already, repacked them and Ila still delves into them with gusto. Did I forget anything here Kerry?

Today's bag: Insect theme
Ladybird beetle shakers
Glittery butterfly stickers with paper to stick stickers on

I think that we'll try and come up with an activity bag for each day. Suggestions gladly accepted.
p.s. Happy St. David's Day
p.p.s At home date night tonight, movie, wine, and dessert. Got to love it.
More stickers


  1. In the rain, on a sofa, watching something vaguely suitable on the tele - with books, paper, crayons.

  2. Rainy days: Art (crayons, watercolors, playdoh, etc.). Making forts/caves with blankets and sheets. Legos. "Grocery shopping" with doll stroller (bonus: often ends in imaginary ice cream). Puzzles. Playing "red light, green light" up and down the hall to get toddler ya-yas out.

    Then we put on our rain boots and raincoats and go outside and stomp in puddles.

  3. Oooooo, rainy Sunday afternoons cuddled on the sofa with my brother and mum watching old black and white Agatha Christie movies. Some of my warmest memories. Funny, knowing now that mum was taking a much needed nap. Makes me think about tv and children a little differently. All I remember was the snuggling.

    Ooooooo red light, green light is a new one for us. We'll have to try that. Great ideas, thank you.

  4. P & co are enmeshed in a new activity today: painting penne and wagon-wheel pasta (gee, wonder if you can find that in Italy?), then stringing them on twine for necklaces.

  5. Brilliant idea Rachel. I may wait until we're in the new apartment where I won't be so worried about the furniture all the time, and where we'll be able to use the courtyard.