(More pictures here.)
Today was the last Thursday of the summer. Sad. (I'm probably looking forward to summer ending about as little as my kids are. I love having the kids home all the time, and i am really, really going to miss having free time with them!)
Since it was the final one of the summer - and i never know if this will be the last summer that the kids want to do adventures with me, or if by next year they'll be rolling their eyes at the idea - i figured that we'd go out with a bang.
The first thing we did was to head to Krispy Kreme for some hot-n-ready donuts. I looked it up online, and according to their website, they have the hot ones until 11:00, so we got there at about 10:30, watched the donuts going through the machine, and each got a yummy, warm doughnut. We hadn't been there in ages, so the kids were all excited.
Next we headed over to SkyZone (the trampoline place), but when we got there we realized that they didn't open until noon, so we had about an hour to kill. Since i'd had a bit of trouble finding SkyZone, we already knew what was nearby, so we headed over to Trader Joe's and wandered around. At one point, Houston pointed at the shelf and said, "Cookie butter!?" and immediately an employee behind us popped up and said, "You can try that over in the corner if you want!" We all tried it and all agreed that we didn't actually like it. After we'd walked away, Zane said, "Usually i like anything sweet, but i was NOT a fan of that."
When we'd walked through the whole store, we still had time to burn, so we went to Michael's and PetSmart and wandered through both of those stores. Zane found guinea pig babies on sale and immediately decided that all he wanted in all the world was a baby guinea pig, and since he still had enough left over with his birthday money, couldn't he please get one??? (We're saying no. Our current guinea pig has had 2 roommates and hasn't gotten along with either of them. I think we need to wait until she dies, and then if people still want guinea pigs, then we can get a pair of them.)
Finally, at noon, we went to SkyZone and leaped around for an hour, after which everyone was hot and exhausted, but completely happy. (Side note: There is a foam pit at SkyZone into which you can leap from the trampolines. When you watch the little kids, it looks so easy! Leap in, crawl back. What i didn't realize is that that method doesn't actually work for adults. So i leapt in and then tried to crawl back, except that i'm big enough to sink, so it's more like crawling/wading through the foam to get back to the side. And then, when i got to the side and tried to climb out, i started to put one leg up, but then in the process i straightened the other leg, which immediately sank, and i quickly figured out that the only way to get out was by pulling myself out by my arms. Which doesn't look graceful when you're surrounded by and covered in foam - foam which is also trying to pull your socks off your feet while you try to extricate them. Luckily, Katrina was standing nearby, videotaping me and giggling. Sigh.)
From there, we worked our way down 28th Street. First the bookstore, and then a stop at Aldi to pick up some food for a picnic, and then a park for the picnic, playing on the playground, and some drawing time for Katrina and me. The playground was pretty neglected and had some broken bits, but it was also old enough to have a merry-go-round and a swing-set that was insanely high, which the kids thought was fantastic.
Juanito woke up and joined us while we were at the park, so he got to do the rest of the adventures with us. We took both cars to the car wash, where we all piled into the van and drove through and then all climbed into the little Rio and drove through again. (Incidentally, it was an entirely different experience in the car. The van is all quiet and the spray and the brushes are all fun and lovely. In the car, everything is loud and intense and it shook the car, and the water started to leak in through the door next to Katrina and me, and there was the added suspense of whether or not the antenna would break off. [It didn't.])
Next we went for frozen yogurt, and then drove over to my parents' house to hang out for a little while. And then, on the way home, we stopped at Goodwill for some last-minute school clothes for the kids.
By the time we got home, it was about 8:00, and everyone was exhausted. Showers were taken, and i'm hoping that everyone fell asleep fairly quickly.