This week Merrick finished a three week trial of tae kwan do. Overall he enjoyed it, but for me it was a mixed bag. I liked that they teach respect and believing in yourself. I also enjoyed finding out what rubbed off on CC from the class (like hearing her count like they did in class,"one Sir, two Sir, etc.") Really the only thing I didn't like is that while Merrick was the youngest member of the class, he was the second tallest. That meant that the vast majority of the time when they were partnered, he was partnered with the tallest and oldest boy (9) who really didn't have a lot of patience for a 5 year-old struggling to figure it out. I am sure this is not going to be the last time we struggle with unfair expectations due to his height.
Also this week soccer started. Merrick had his first practice and since his team is all kindergarten boys it was nice to see him with others at the same skill level (even if he did tower over them). I am sure I will have lots more to report about soccer practices and games over the coming weeks.
On Wednesday Becca and I decided we were really brave and despite the almost 90 degree heat, we were going to take all 6 children to Oaks Amusement Park. It was hot and crowded and the kids played hard. At about 4pm we decided to leave the park and go cool off and get ice cream. At that point I was about ready to call it a day, but Becca wanted to stick it out and I knew my kids would mutiny if we went home and cousins got to stay. So, we headed back to the park with a plan to have our husbands come join us when they got off work (and Jeremy even brought pizza). With pizza and husband reinforcements we all got a second wind. The weather cooled and the crowds thinned to almost non-existent and the kids ran from ride to ride until the park closed at 9pm. It was a day that will not soon be forgotten.
Thursday was much more low key. The main focus of the day was our meet the teacher ice cream social. Merrick had gotten his teacher assignment on Monday and not only did he get the teacher I was hoping for, but he also got all his friends in his class too. With school staring tomorrow I am excited for him and sad for me.
A few weeks ago Becca and I had a conversation about our priorities of activities we wanted to get done before the summer was over. One of the things was Oaks Amusement Park, but two other things were the Children's Museum and the zoo, which happen to share a parking lot. Becca had this crazy idea that maybe we could pay for all day parking and visit both in one day. It turns out that this is an ambitious idea, but doable if the stars align. We started the day on Friday at the Children's Museum. We have been here a lot in the 4+ years we have lived here, but this place never disappoints. The highlight for me this time was my kid's love of the face painting. Merrick turned himself into a green ninja and CC went to town with the the black paint resulting in what looked like a nice beard. I couldn't help myself when the opportunity presented to take her picture by the bearded lady poster.
At this point our day was only half over. We swung by the car for a few minutes to have a little break and eat some lunch and then headed to the zoo. Not many pictures from the zoo. While it was fun for sure, it was the end of a busy day at the end of a busy week and we were more focused on keeping everyone together and happy than on taking pictures.
I am really not ready for tomorrow to come. I am not ready to send my baby to kindergarten ALL day, but what I can say is that we milked every last drop of fun from this summer and I have no regrets about that.