Toby, Lucía and I snuck off to France and Spain last week, while our beautiful boy spent quality time with my parents. It was such a tough decision to make, but I felt sound in knowing he would be in the arms of the two most loving and tender people I've ever known. My Mom and Dad were very eager to have him to themselves for a whole week :) On the way to the airport, my heart felt like it had been ripped out of my chest, and I wanted to turn the car around and just squeeze him so tight. I wondered how in the world I thought I would be strong enough to do it, but you know what? We called my parents the minute we got to the airport, and somehow, a sense of peace washed over me. I felt calm about our decision, and so excited to get to Paris.
In the week we were abroad, we walked about 25 miles, visited 10 different markets, shared too many baguettes, became addicted to French macarons, attempted to speak French, stayed up until 3 in the morning drinking wine with friends, picnicked in parks and the beach, ate the most delicious fruit we've ever tasted, layed on the beautiful beaches of the Costa del Maresme in Catalunya, walked the streets of Barcelona, ate tapas, drank Sangria...
Every inch of Paris intrigued me - the language, the delicious food, the incredible mix of people who live there. Toby and I walked around, hand in hand (with Lucía on Toby's back in her Ergo, mesmerized by the commotion of the city). I will never forget some of the things I saw and felt in our time there.
We flew to Barcelona on Thursday. Spain felt like home, in a way I never imagined. Every little thing about it was comforting, and reminded me of my Mother. Her family came from the Gran Canarías (Spanish islands off the west coast of Morocco), and while she grew up in the U.S., her Spanish culture was very preserved. That culture is such a huge part of who I am today, and going there reminded me of all the reasons I am so proud of it.
As the sun was setting on our time there, I was sad to leave, but longed to hold my sweet boy in my arms again. As we waited to board our flight from Barcelona to New York, we were offered $1,600 vouchers to stay another night in Barcelona (the flight was way oversold), but no amount of money could have kept me from seeing Andreas that night. Once we were home, I held him tighter than I ever have before, and realized that our time apart was healthy for both of us.
I can't wait to share some recipes for some of the wonderful things we ate! I'm trying to get back into my routine here at home (and a normal sleeping pattern), but should have a recipe or two up for you toward the end of the week ;)