Feb 16, 2010

What President's Day looked like

I don't know what President's Day looks like for most people. I guess for people who don't work for the government or financial institutions, it looks much like other days.

For me, it was different this year. The Place Where I Work was closed for the "holiday," and our daycare was closed for a professional enrichment day. Our elementary school was scheduled to be closed but actually held classes because they were making up for a snow day we used last month. So I had Nicholas and Jake at home with me, and Nathaniel was supposed to ride the bus home since he'd get out of school during Jake's nap.

I may have mentioned it before, but I get cabin fever really easily. I can't stay inside all day or I go nuts. That goes TRIPLE for when I'm home with the kids all day. (As I Tweeted yesterday, I'd make a TERRIBLE stay-at-home mom.)

So I'd planned to take Nick and Jake to one of our local inflatable places, Jump Zone, for their free play session yesterday morning from 10:00 to noon. They were so excited when I told them! Jake kept grabbing the hem of my shirt and yelling "Jump! Jump!" in the kitchen while I was fixing their breakfast. Finally it was time to leave.

There was much jumping once we got there.

(I KNOW. You're scrolling madly down the page to see if all the pictures in this post are going to be as crappy as that one. Not to worry. Only like the first 10 or so are.)

Nick was a little lost without Nathaniel. He kept asking me to come do the big slide with him, but I couldn't watch Jake on the toddler side of the gym and go with Nick at the same time on the bigger inflatables. It was sort of pitiful. He finally said, "I wish Nathaniel was here."

Jake spent some time when we first got there surveying everything and figuring out what he wanted to do.

He ran to the Batman inflatable, but when I asked him if he wanted to get on it, he said, "Nooooooooo," and shook his head violently. He finally climbed up in the basketball inflatable.

Later he got in the Finding Nemo inflatable to jump with Nick.

They played well in there together, but it was a little too "safe" for Nick's taste.

Jake eventually wanted to try the toddler slide, which was just his size.

Before he went down the second time, he leaned over to give Nick a hug. It warmed my heart, which was good because they were both being sort of fussy and -- in my mind -- not appropriately appreciative of the fun outing.

When we'd been there about an hour, they got in on a game of hockey.

YEP. Jake had a hockey stick.

He didn't feel as included as he would like to have felt.

Nick took his post very seriously, and I think it was the most fun he had all day.

When they got so fussy that I'd decided that it wasn't worth the trouble to stay, we went to the Magic Cure-All (for them AND me), Chick-fil-A. No day is complete without a trip to Chick-fil-A, in my opinion. (So I guess that means I have a lot of incomplete days. But not as many as you might think.)

While I was paying, I put Jake down so I could get my wallet out of the diaper bag. He and Nick wandered over to the seating area while I was grabbing napkins and straws. When I rounded the corner, Jake had pulled up a chair at a table with a family we didn't know, and he was just sitting there waiting on his food. The nice family thought he was adorable and they were giggling over him.

I staked out an area for us and settled the boys in, deciding not to use a high chair for Jake (for the first time ever). The booth was situated close enough to the table that he could reach everything fine. Of course, that left him a lot of leeway for moving around.

He hardly sat down.

Good thing waffle fries are enchanting, though. (Oh, and hello to my friend Tonia and her son Luke in the background!)

Sometimes even the lure of the waffle fry isn't enough to keep one's bottom glued to one's seat. The grass is always greener on the other side of the booth, I suppose. (Although in this case it was just two businessmen. I'm sure they loved the attention.)

When I went back up to get their kids' Ice Dream cups, I told them to sit on their bottoms until I came back. When I rounded the corner to come back to our table, my friend Tonia had Jake in her lap at HER table. Apparently he'd made a break for it to come find me at the counter, but she intercepted him. He was happy as a clam with her.

AND with his Ice Dream.

In this family, ice cream is serious business.

We love it. LOVE. IT.

When Jake had finished his, he moved in for the kill on my small milkshake.


Once we got home, Jake took a one-hour nap. (Boooooooooooo.) Then he was up for good. We bundled up and went outside, because Nathaniel had just gotten home and we wanted to make the most of the daylight. I pulled out all of the bikes, which are always a big hit.

Jake, though, having only slept for an hour, was easily distressed. I believe that right before this, the wind blew the wrong way.

And then just before this, a bird chirped in the wrong key.

Nathaniel and Nick remained pretty happy with the bikes, though.

I had to help Nick more, because he's forgotten a little since he started riding without training wheels last summer.

But helping Nick meant that I couldn't attend to This One's every need. Problematic.

Nathaniel tried to entertain him with a trip into the bushes. These bushes are in full bloom during other seasons, but right now they're a little thin. Not as much fun as during the spring and summer.

CLEARLY. Because they didn't entertain His Highness very well at all.

There was some Stomping Away From Mommy in Anger involved.

But then there was some Stomping BACK to Mommy in Anger, because if you stomp away you sort of feel like your bargaining power is diminished somehow.

But eventually he got interested in foraging in the yard for acorns.

Acorns are fun to find and to throw.

Acorns might even have brought a hint of a smile to Fussy's face.

Meanwhile, Nathaniel and Nick decided to climb the crepe myrtle in the driveway. I make them wear their bike helmets to climb it, since they like to swing themselves out over the concrete upside-down.

This is the only tree I require that for, though.

When we got bored in the driveway, we moved on into the backyard. The trampoline is always a popular spot.

They all actually jump pretty well together.

The big boys are patient with Jake.

And when it's not 20 degrees outside, I like to just sit and watch them jump.

But yesterday I had my eye on the clock. After all this, we needed to get ready to go to the Cub Scout banquet.

So as usual, while the day had felt full and we had more than enough to keep us busy, at 5:00 we still had hours to go and people to please. And as usual, I mentally saluted all the stay-at-home moms who do it every day. Hats off to you!


Sarah T. said...

Awesome post!

Rachel said...

There are days that I think I am crazy! I'm not a stay at home by choice. I'd love to work, even part time, to get out of the house and let the kids have a chance to get away from each other.

Candi said...

Thanks for popping by my blog! I love the name of your blog "grass stains"...that's so great!

gail@My Repurposed Life said...

three boys! my hat off to you! sahm or not! :)
great day, thanks for sharing it with us!

sara said...

We love Ice Dream!!!! Now I am craving it.....

OK- you totally made my day when you said my colors remind you of 'whatever' I love her blog!

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