Great Day!

I can hardly believe how easy the boys were today! I started my day around 10am as usual. But today I cooked the corn on the cob from yesterday's CSA pickup for breakfast, and it was so tender and sweet! So instead of just cooking two for myself I cooked them all and T and the boys gobbled them down as their mid-morning snack. The weather looked iffy, but all week the storms have been very short and easy to wait out, so I took my chances on a day trip to Staunton. It's only about 45 minutes from home, so it's not a major expedition, just 50% further than we'd go on an ordinary day. We arrived at Gypsy Hill Park just after 1pm.

The town has a miniature train that runs through the park on weekends, but it was running for the holiday today, and even better, it was free! So our first stop was to ride that train. The last time I tried it with Will, he totally freaked out and cried the whole time. Maybe he was one? Two? I don't remember, but it's been over a year in any case. I was hopeful Max would take it better than W did back then. When M threw himself down on the ground crying on the walk to board the train I was worried, but I just scooped him up and sat him on my lap and he was fine. But then W had to sit alone in the seat in front of us (Plan A was for both boys to sit together with me right behind them). But both boys did just fine and enjoyed the ride. It's really a charming little train, it makes me want to lay down track around the farm and have my own miniature railroad. That would be awesome, but waaaay beyond the scope of my attention span. I would just wind up with 10 yards of track somewhere with weeds growing up through it, my own little mysterious abandoned railroad is what it would be.

Then it was time for lunch-- I ate a large breakfast (last night's curried kale & tofu leftovers) in anticipation of finding nothing vegan. The boys had hot dogs, potato chips, and sno cones, while I had the same but fried pickles instead of the hot dogs (I checked, no eggs or milk in the batter). We spread our blanket in the shade of the large trees in front of the bandstand and listened to two different acts while we ate. I much prefer the setup in Staunton, their stage is smaller than the monstrosity that is the Pavillion in Cville, and the spectator area is well-shaded.

After lunch, we headed out in search of the playground. We found the one for little kids first, and both boys loved it. There were enough other toddlers there for it to be lively, but not chaotic or loud. Then we went back for some more music and to look for the big-kid playground. But right as we approached it, it started pouring rain. Lucky for us, there was a building with a large porch right next to it, so we waited there. I blew bubbles from a star-shaped bubble necklace given to the boys by a neighbor for the amusement of all the toddlers trapped on the porch until the storm blew over. Like all the storms this week, it only lasted a few minutes. By then it was around 4pm and I decided a good time to head home. I saw a fireworks stand on the side of the road, and hopped out to get some sparklers. They only had giant ones, but the guy pointed out they were safer for kids, so I got a box.

The boys were kind of a wreck when we got home, both screaming for no reason other than being discombobulated from a big day out, but the commotion didn't last long and we were able to chill out before bath time with some video games. W wanted to put the sparklers off until tomorrow night so I would let him watch more of a new game, but we wound up so far behind our normal schedule that it was already getting dark before we were ready for baths, so I took them outside for the sparklers tonight. W wasn't sure he would feel safe, so I had him and Max hold their sticks unlit, then they could watch me with mine and decide for themselves if they wanted to hold their own sparklers or let me hold them. It took them all of a nanosecond to determine that they wanted to get theirs lit, and so it was done. W didn't care for M "chasing" him, but M was too mesmerized by the sparkles to notice W and I think W was just nervous because M was randomly wandering a few steps nearer him. One giant sparkler was just the right amount of amusement, so that was quick and easy for me.

Then bath and bedtime, about 30 minutes later than usual. I am fine with that variance from our regular schedule for a holiday. I shudder to think what horrors of behavior I would face tomorrow if I tried to keep the boys out until after late-night fireworks and then the drive home afterwards. Maybe next year. The local show is Saturday night, so I'll see what T thinks about that-- with a ten-minute drive home it's less of a production than going to a larger town, but still pretty late for these boys, so I don't know.