A Princeton Afternoon.

Today has not been on my side. Last night Carolyn just wouldn’t sleep- clearly she didn’t get the memo that I had planned four hours of math homework at 8. At 10:30 she finally crashed, and I was left to wrestle with graphs and leading coefficients until 2:30 this morning. LAME.

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They’re very lucky they’re so cute.

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This morning showed no improvements, with J & C screaming in unison at every trip and stumble. Carolyn is having a lot of trouble playing independently right now, and Jack seems to want to live on my lap. The combination of their demands and so little sleep was like thunderheads over my brain.

I put them in the car, intending to drive until they fell asleep and then park outside of a Starbucks to work. It was a good idea in theory, but as soon as I put the car into park they both shot up, wide awake. I tried carting them to the playground, but Jack was determined to scale every available structure which meant I was popping out of my seat every few seconds. Not really a productive environment…

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…but it’s impossible to be angry when I look at that face. So now here we are with the windows down and the radio on…parked in the driveway. Whatever works!

Yesterday the kids and I went over to Princeton, which is officially my new favorite place. First stop:

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mecca. Although I have now been to both the Philadelphia and the Princeton stores, and I’m sorry to say that neither one compares to any of the New York Lululemons.

We also made a stop into Small World Coffee, my second-favorite café.

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I ordered a cupcake to share with Jack, but by the time I dug out my camera to take this picture, the entire confection had mysteriously vanished.

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I was turned on to Small World Coffee shortly after graduating from high school. My mother and Rob have always been big fans, and I feel like for what it is, I do not get over there enough. They have excellent coffee, to start, as well as tons of vegan options for sandwiches and snacks. They’re always featuring a special coffee drink; yesterday was a sweet Louisiana-inspired iced coffee with hints of chicory- yummy!

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Jack sat in a cupcake-induced coma…

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…while Carolyn played with the *ahem* other baby in the mirror! 😉

After Small World Coffee, we walked around Princeton’s campus.

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It is absolutely breathtaking. The thought of learning in such a beautiful environment is more than I can handle- surely heaven could have nothing on that. The walls were positively whispering with the magnitude of knowledge that they have housed.

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The intricacy of the stone structures is intense. It makes me feel like I’ve been transported into another time or dimension.

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Everything is arched, which is of course a huge part of the allure. I could sit and stare at/through/into stone archways all day.

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Jack seemed right at home. It was nice to let him roam freely for a bit, without keeping his hand locked in mine.

Walking around the campus spurred my thoughts onto education and achievement. It is my intention to support Jack and Carolyn in whatever endeavors they choose, as long as they are making healthy choices. I don’t want them to ever feel like something is outside of their reach, especially when it comes to school. I think that’s why it took me so long to develop a vested interest in my own education- I never believed I could do the things I dreamed of doing, and so I never bothered to try.

Only after I had developed a strong sense of myself- who I was and what I wanted- did I finally realize that I could do whatever I wanted, as long as I put in the required effort. To fear a challenge is to fear failure, but if you never try, you fail anyway. I want to instill the knowledge in my children that anything is possible.

Earlier this year I applied to the school of my dreams. A few years ago, I wouldn’t have bothered. I would have gone for the safety school, resigning myself to the bottom rung. Somewhere along the line I learned to value and believe in myself- I also learned to work for the things that I wanted instead of settling for whatever I am handed.

I can’t wait to share these lessons with my children. I am so looking forward to watching them grow into unique and independent individuals, watching them make their own choices, their own mistakes. I want to help them to realize that potential is an infinite thing, defined only by your willingness to keep going and  an eternal belief in your abilities.

Perhaps someday I’ll take a similar picture to this one- but instead of a toddler in a red checked shirt, it will feature a young man in a cap and gown on his graduation day. Or perhaps not. Whether or not that comes to fruition is irrelevant- the important thing is knowing that it is possible.

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One thought on “A Princeton Afternoon.

  1. Pingback: Mrs. Obama « Being Elizabeth

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