Friday’s Favorites

Remember this was my single-parenting week?  Well, it’s been adventurous, long, and on occasion stressful, but overall, it’s been good and I hope my kids have special memories of their time with just mom. 

We spent Monday doing things around the house.  Monday’s are always my recover-from-Sunday-days.  Boring stuff like laundry, dishes, cleaning bedrooms, etc.  In addition to all that “fun” stuff, we ran Dad’s pillow up to him at camp.  He’d left it behind and we discovered it.  You just can’t be a grown up without a pillow on those hard bunks for a whole week.  It was pure sympathy that made me do it….and the kids enjoyed filling it full of goodies and surprising him with a visit.  🙂

Tuesday we went swimming an hour away.  Even Littlest joined us in the pool and had a blast.  He has the moves down from watching  big brother and sister take lessons for two weeks.  Legs out, arms out, kick, kick, kick.  Mostly he just wanted to grab people’s floaty toys though.  He eventually expired from the hard work and shivering so I got out with him and he fell fast asleep cuddling with mama.  There’s nothing like snuggles with Littlest while watching the two oldest have so much splashy fun.

On our way home, my friend texted me and asked if I could stop and pick something up at the store for her. Ten minutes from home, I stopped to drop her goods, turned the “new” van off, and made the delivery.  Less than a minute later, I got in the driver’s seat, and turned the key to start the vehicle.  NOTHING!  I tried for awhile – over and over again turning the key, pushing the brake, turning the steering wheel, rattling the gear shift.  Then we tried jumping it.  After 15 minutes of that, they gave me their extra vehicle to take home.  The short version is that I figured it would have to be towed. My reaction: Why does this have to happen when my husband is gone??????  I arranged for a friend to bring his trailer and pick it up for the mechanic the next evening.  When he got there, he naturally got in to see if he could start it.  He did.  I guess it just wasn’t completely in PARK.  Wow! I felt like an idiot.  He was so kind about it, but seriously!  He’s getting a big platter of cookies on Sunday. 

Wednesday ended up being a lot of outside play and gardening, but mostly just enjoying the sunshine together…as we waited for things to happen with our van. 

Thursday.  We putzed around, doing laundry, cleaning up, playing outside for most of the day – then headed up to visit Dad at camp.  I made the drive for the kids, but who’s kidding, it was for me too!  I love my Honey… a whole week apart is agony.  The kids got to run all over the hilly camp, watch paint ball wars, play games (frisbee, volleyball, carpet-pool) and catch up with some friends from church. We got to share a meal and then it was back home for my sleepy crew.  Today – the last full day of hubby-absence – was another beautiful, sunny one and we popped out of bed to get to the game park not too far away.  Going without two adults saved us a considerable amount of money, so I felt a little better inspite of my guilt over my man missing the priceless scenes of pure glee as our kids interacted with these amazing creatures. 

This park has exotic and “everyday” critters we see around here, but we were within inches, if not touching them. We got to pet a baby cougar, black bear, and snow leopard.  A couple of tiger cubs stalked and nearly mauled Littlest, minus the thin gate between the three of them. Thankfully, he laughed about it.  I think my heart nearly popped out of my chest as I grabbed him away!  He was so enthralled with the four-legged creatures he could touch.  I kept thinking “goat-whisperer” as he charmed yet another one to let him love them.  He was also fascinated with their little black “pebbles” everywhere.  It was quite a task   to take pictures and avoid the wrong kind of snack going in his mouth.  

Half-Pint spotted the camels first and asked for a ride.

 She said she felt like she was flying, and Oldest was pretty sure he was running through the Sahara as a young Indiana Jones. I love it when the adventure runs wild in these little minds.

I never thought I’d say an opposum is cute, but these little babies were adorable.  And by the way, there’s two in that beeny cap. It was a hat full of wiggles.

Mule whisperer.  This boy had no fear of any creature.  I see a zoo in his future.  🙂

White skunk – not descented.

 Deer whisperer.  This particular deer really like the conversation Littlest was having with him and stuck around for quite awhile.  Almost looked like he was talking back at one point.

We came home with a plethora of feathers from all manner of birds, but mostly peacock feathers.

We also came home with very stinky shoes!

Thank you, Lord for all your little critters, large and small that entertained my kids for so many hours today.  Thank you for the beauty and uniqueness in all Your creation that enthralls our hearts to sing Your praise.  Thank you for imagination and innocence that allows these little children to find so much pleasure in the things we adults often overlook as “everyday”.  Thank you for allowing me days of aloneness to rely more on You, to trust You for the wisdom needed to guide these young ones in the easy and hard moments.  Thank You for life!

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