Thursday, July 2, 2015

What I Did On My Half-Day Summer Vacation

My mom called at 7:45 this morning to relay the news that she is sick and would not be able to watch the kids today. This did not appear to be a very good omen for what was supposed to be a busy day. I scrambled and checked my work calendar to see how bad the damage would be and then touched base with my husband. We decided to tag-team childcare for the day. He took the morning shift while I went into the office and I returned home halfway through to allow him to get some work done.

This. This is how working moms make it work. With husbands who share equally in child care responsibilities. Sometimes I feel guilty for asking my husband to help with things. I worry about "putting him out," interfering with his work plans, asking him to do too much. And the fact that I feel guilty makes me cringe because I know I shouldn't. He certainly never makes me feel guilty. In fact, he goes out of the way to help. It must be the fact that *I* have always been the strong advocate for more children. All he's ever wanted was a Porsche. (For those of you keeping up, I have three children and a coveted minivan....and he has zero Porsches).

Sometimes I can hear myself double checking my husband's child care work. "What did the kids have for dinner?" "You made Jacob change his clothes, right?" "How much TV did they watch?"... It's all with good intentions. But I know it's unfair and probably makes him feel incompetent or unsupported (which is far from the truth). We do things differently and there are certainly many things I do at which would cause him to shake his head. So I do my very best to choke back my questions and smile appreciatively. It's taken a while for us to get all the kinks out. But our (laid back) system works pretty well.

Back to today, when I rushed out the door this morning, I was a little stressed and worried about having to leave work early. But I got as much done as I could and when I got home I realized the blessing in the last minute change of plans: I had an entire afternoon free. And the forecast was sunny and hot.

I grabbed the kids (my husband had dutifully fed both each one hotdog and one corndog for lunch, which is sadly their new favorite meal lately) and we snuck out for an impromptu afternoon adventure in our city.

I pushed Jon and Ryan in the double stroller while Jacob rode his bike. We traveled the .8 miles to our downtown and took in all the sights and activities of the city.

We stopped by the brand new arcade where I blew a whole $10 on a (rigged!) bubble gum claw machine, a slot machine that gives out a random number of prize tickets, and other games. I hate gambling, but arcade games get me every time.

Jacob and Ryan played a game of air hockey.

And Jon tested out his dance moves. Although he probably should master standing before we come back and play again.

After blowing a couple tens at the arcade and claiming some prizes we continued our stroll. We discovered a new store that sells Pokemon cards and Lego sets (I wish we could "undiscover" that one). And the kids danced in the front window display of my favorite boutique while I tried on some summer dresses. I asked the clerk if she wanted to hire my children as dancing mannequins. Surprisingly, she declined the offer.

Then we bought some ice tea and walked down to the ferry terminal, fountain park, and waterfront. It was a gorgeous day. And the perfect weather for some splish-splashing (Jon's new favorite activity). Who am I kidding? That's everyone's favorite activity!

Jon was not a big fan at first.

But I'd say it grew on him.

I love this picture of Ryan sneaking in for a Jon-Jon kiss!


Last time we were at this park, Ryan was terrified of the fountains. He wouldn't go anywhere near them. I was so happy to see him having fun this time around. He's more cautious...or is it stubborness...or is it finickiness? Sometimes I worry that he misses out on fun for no good reason. It brought me so much joy to see him having such fun.

This picture below captures my city perfectly. The water. The ferry. The fountains. The expansive views. When you tell people you live near Seattle they always ask "don't you hate the rain?" The answer is "no." But even if I did...this makes up for it tenfold:

We watched the ferry come in and the kids waved enthusiastically to all the uninterested passengers aboard. 

It was a wonderful, wonderful day. And it was only made possibly due to my mom's sudden, mysterious flu. Sorry mom, but now we're kind of glad you got sick. 

And before I sign off for bed, I have some selfies to share:

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