Sunday, June 13, 2010

Just Another Happy Summer Day





Not as hot as last weekend but still pretty scorching. Here's what we did to beat the heat, or in some cases get beat by it:

9:50a - What's this, a late start? Thankfully, the kids are mellow in the morning. They wake up a tick later than normal (6:15), play and watch TV without incident, eat breakfast happily, and play some more, affording plenty of time for in-house chores. The kids and I linger around until Amy's friend arrives to say hi to her and her baby, and then we head out for shopping downtown.

12:50p - In a bit of a preview of an itinerary we hope to take some family members on next month when they're in town for a family wedding, we enjoy a brisk but leisurely outing downtown that lasts almost exactly three hours from door to door. First, we hit Reading Terminal Market, grab soft pretzels, and take in the sights and smells. Then, we hit the Gallery Mall and make a beeline for Five Below, where we score Silly Bandz knock-offs and Aaron gets to pick out a toy for his Gotcha Day. (He decides on a basketball, and upon bringing it home and bouncing it incessantly, I immediately regret the purchase.) We meander through Chinatown and decide to stop in on a bakery, where Aaron and Jada pick out one item each (Jada a cream-filled bun and Aaron a sesame bun with read bean filling). We make our way to Franklin Square and enjoy the pastries and then the kids putter around in the playground. It's such a lovely day, and Amy has just called to say she's going to lie down to rest her throbbing ankle, so we decide to buy lunch at Stephen Starr's Squareburger. That's right, a world-renowned chef is offering burgers under five dollars right inside the park. I get a cheeseburger, chicken fingers, and fries, and they're all delicious, especially the burger. We walk barefoot through Independence Mall and then hit the subway station and zip ourselves back to our neighborhood.

2:50p - After Aaron has put himself down for a nap, Jada and I drive to the local Sears to pick out an exercise bicycle for the basement and a television for the kid's floor. The bike fits in our front seat with millimeters to spare, and the television is, well, small, so it fits easily in our tiny trunk. While we are Sears, we get a call from our friends, who are inviting us to the local swim club for the afternoon. I am certain Jada will be excited about this new development in our social calendar.

3:50p - Sure enough, once we return home and I ask Amy about this option and she says yes, I ask Jada what she thinks, and she immediately puts her swimsuit on and then wakes up Aaron. While I coax Jada back into her clothes and set her and Aaron up with toys and TV, Amy packs a dinner and preps Aaron's Gotcha Day cake while I walk random items (two bags of clothes and shoes, a big mirror, and a mattress) one block down the street to the secondhand store and then walk two blocks in the other direction to drop off two suits at the dry cleaner's. Amy instructs me that carpets on three floors need vacuuming, so I tend to that; and she instructs the kids that they can put their swimsuits on now, so they hop to it. Our friends arrive and the dad is pressed into service to help me extract the exercise bike out of the car, into the house, and down the basement stairs.

6:50p - Well, that was fun. A cold pool on a hot day is quite relaxing, as is casual conversation with other relaxed parents and kids, some of whom we know from the neighborhood, church, and/or kids' schools. Amy pesters me that we should join. The kids alternate between the kid pool (four feet deep) and the toddler pool (one foot deep), and I alternate with them, because unlike our friends' kids, our kids can't swim. Amy is torn between taking her boot off and leaving it on; she's not supposed to get it wet, but walking three blocks from home to the club has made it hurt. After we scarf down dinner, she cleans up and heads home, while we let the kids play a little bit longer before shutting things down, packing things up, and ambling our way home as well.

7:50p - A vigorous bath, the setting of ground rules concerning the wearing of Silly Bandz at night (you can wear them or put them away, and two only), and our regular bedtime routine follow in quick order. The kids, I'm sure, sleep well. No pictures of all of the day's festivities, but imagine our kids' lovely faces, darkening by the week, hair a little sweaty, with content grins from cheek to cheek, and that'll be your image of how the day went for us.
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