Sunday, June 20, 2010

Franklin and Nathan

Video to follow, but another fun summer Saturday. The kids woke up at their usual early hour (5:45), partook of crafts activities up on the third floor before coming down for breakfast, and skittered back upstairs for more general mayhem. As I was getting ready to take them out to CVS and to the dry cleaners later that morning, I finally went up to the third floor and found quite the mess: a glass of water strewn across the table, papers soaked, a big ball of paper towels deployed to sop up the spill. My request for their assistance fell on deaf ears at first, but eventually they got their cleaning butts into action.

Walking to CVS and then to the dry cleaners meant about a half-mile of total walking, so when we returned I decided to retrieve the stroller for our outing to Franklin Institute and was almost immediately glad; I had forgotten how far north of Market the museum is. We just missed the bus and had to wait a good 20 minutes for the next one, making the air-conditioning once we got into that bus all the more refreshing. Upon arriving downtown, it was a good half-mile to the museum, plus an intimidating flight of steps up to the main entrance. Given how crabby and flaky the kids had been so far that morning, I was glad to spare them the ordeal of too much walking.

The Franklin Institute was a ton of fun for the kids. Jada had scored passes through her school, otherwise I'm not sure I would have considered this as a fun option for kids so young. But there were plenty of peers there; it helped that it was "Sid the Science Kid" day, replete with an episode of "Sid" in the main auditorium plus "Sid"-themed activities and exhibits, and of course "Sid" himself, who was always far too popular to get close to, what with screaming toddlers and their parents ever flitting around him.

I could not get the kids to leave the museum, they were so into all of the different exhibits. They were like a blur, flitting from one thing to the next, wanting to try every single contraption and go into every single area. The place was far bigger and more engaging than what I remembered from my visit some 15 years ago. I could see us getting a membership there in the not-too-distant future.

We were thankfully spared a long bus wait on the way home, and returned just in time to throw some food into the kids and then head out for their cousin Nathan's first birthday party, at their aunt Nicol's parents' house. They used to run a restaurant, so the food was fantastic, as was the setting: a big backyard provided ample room for all sorts of sporting activities and general run-around.

Courtesy of a nice nap and great gifts, the birthday boy was in a great mood, as were the kids, who just a few hours previous were on the verge of Amy and I pulling the plug on the whole outing, as they were being really disobedient on the car ride up. (I finally yelled at them to close their eyes and shut up for one minute, and that was all it took for both of them to fall asleep.)

Alas, we had to leave to get home for bedtime. But not before cake and ice cream, and goodie bags that were ravenously torn into the next morning. (Yes, my children are already up.) All in all, a great summer Saturday. Now if I can just hope for a more mellow Sunday; I could use a nap.
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