Mother’s Day Weekend

After the Crayola Factory on Friday, we had more fun events to keep us busy.  We visited Uncle Matt and Aunt Kelly.  The kids played loudly until Brady finally woke up from his nap and could go out to play.  We went to a huge castle playground that we had visited last time we were in the area.  It’s about 8 kid-sized stories tall and you could get lost in there.  Last time we were there, Casey did.  She stuck to the smaller areas and played with Brady most of the time.  They had some monkey bars that she could reach all by herself and she swung across them without any help for the first time.  She was very proud of that.  She couldn’t wait to get home and try it out on the monkey bars in the backyard.

For dinner we went out to my father in law’s country club with Pat’s parents and Matt, Kelly and Brady.  We had a great dinner.  The table was beside the door so we could let the kids go out and play on the patio when they got restless.  Which was every 5 minutes or so.  The chocolate milk that we ordered for Jack and Casey came in a huge glass with whipped cream on top and I think that may have fueled their inability to sit still.  Brady is 20 months old and I forgot how fast a 20 month old can be.  My chasing skills were a little out of practice.  One minute he’s running toward the street and the next he’s running towards a set of stairs.  

Sunday morning we got up very early so we could walk in the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Mother’s Day Walk in Philadelphia.  We were walking to support Pat’s Aunt Kathy and another family friend.  I can’t remember the last time I had to wake the kids up before 7…and this was way before 7.  We sweetened the deal with a train ride to the middle of Philly.  Jack claimed it was his very first train ride…very different from when he went on the subway last year.

All of the breast cancer survivors were standing on the top of the steps at the Art Museum and it was very impressive to see them all up there.  They descended the steps and met up with their families and then everyone set out on the walk.

We had a couple of umbrella strollers for the kids.  The one Jack chose to ride in was a good 15 years old and sometimes the wheels didn’t always roll the way they should have.  I have to say how impressed I was with my husband who pushed this stroller the whole time, while hunched over, and not once did he curse…or tell Jack to get out and walk.  I didn’t tell him but that show of patience felt like a really nice Mother’s Day gift for me.

It was amazing to see the huge crowd of people wearing pink to support finding a cure for breast cancer.  It was also a little overwhelming to see how many people were touched by it and it’s only one kind of cancer.  I’m very glad we were able to meet up with family and make it to the walk this year.

After the walk we took the train back and packed up our car.  Pat’s Aunt Kathy invited everyone back to her house after the walk and we spent a great afternoon in her backyard.  The kids played, we got to visit with everyone we probably won’t see for a couple years while we’re in Tennessee and there were tables and tables of delicious food.  It was a great get together.

Casey picked up on Pat and Matt calling Pop Pop “Bernie” as in Bernie from Weekend at Bernie’s and started telling everyone, “My Pop Pop is Bernie!”  She got a kick out of making everyone laugh.  Maybe you see the resemblance too…

Picture from last Easter.  In full disclosure, those are Jack’s sunglasses

After a stop at Ikea for a few pieces of furniture to take to the new house, a stop at the airport to drop Pat off, a drive through Widener University to find gas, 4 stops for the kids to use the bathroom, we finally arrived – exhausted – at our house.  At one point Jack fell asleep using a balloon for a pillow.  And they both fell asleep 10 minutes before we got home.  It was a great weekend and I’m so glad that we made the trip!

   

    

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Crayola Factory

What a fun and busy Mother’s Day Weekend!  Jack, Casey and I drove to Philly, picked Pat up at the airport there and spent the weekend with his family.  As we normally do when we are up there, we packed our weekend full of adventures.

Part of why I wanted to get back to Philly before we head to Tennessee for a couple years is that I realized the kids were probably a great age for the Crayola Factory – The Crayola Experience.  It is in Easton, PA about an hour and a half from Pat’s parents.

We made the trip through some hilly and windy roads which the kids thought was a lot of fun until Casey experienced her first bout of carsickness.  I got a bag in time, but didn’t quite get it opened up all the way.  I didn’t specifically have a change of clothes for her but we happened to have a whole bag of hand me downs that I had brought for my sister-in-law.  We managed to find an outfit that would still fit and cleaned Casey up.  Thankfully, we were only 5 minutes from the factory.

The kids had a great time at the factory.  I had read something to them from the internet about being able to do a bunch of crafts and not having to clean up and Jack was pretty excited about that.  There is basically a station in the museum for each product that Crayola makes – markers, crayons, paint, modeling clay, etc and the kids craft their way through the place.  I thought it would be a little more factory-like.  Although we did see a presentation of how they make crayons and markers with some of their machines.

I remembered my camera so here is our visit in pictures…

Jack was pretty sure he had just spotted the world’s largest crayon.  It’s actually a yellow plastic crayon.  You have to go into the gift shop to see the largest crayon.

Chalk tic-tac-toe with Nana.

Daddy helping Jack with his “flying saucer.”

Dancing with Nana.

Excited about something 🙂

Trying on her space suit.

Making his space suit.

Working hard with Nana…

Another neat part of the museum was a hands on model canal system.  As we drove to Easton, we followed the Delaware river for a while and could see where the canals used to be.  Pat informed us that they used mules to pull cargo up the river through the canals.  The kids got to pretend to be mules at the museum and sent their boats through a series of locks and ramps to get to the other side.  It was a really neat display and the kids loved getting their hands wet.

And I guess Casey got her shirt wet too!

After a trip to the store to see the world’s largest crayon and buy some goodies, we had a great lunch at Pearly Baker’s Alehouse.  The kids collected a special set of 4 different crayons throughout the museum so they got to color with them while we waited for lunch.

Easter Weekend

We loaded up the car and headed to Ocean City to join Pat’s family for Easter weekend.  When we went in February, I packed based on the temperature and failed to factor in the wind and it was so cold there!  The fleece wasn’t enough – I needed my down jacket.  This time, I thought I packed enough warm clothes, adding a cardigan or sweatshirt with every outfit and I was still freezing.  I missed my fleece.  When I took the kids to the playground on Friday, I had to resort to using the rock climbing wall as a wind break to stay warm.  By Sunday it finally warmed up and everyone was asking each other if they had thought to bring sandals or flip flops or shorts.

Thankfully the Easter Bunny knew to look for us in Ocean City.  He brought a very Star Wars themed bag of goodies for Jack and some Star Wars and Princess themed items for Casey.  I slept awful the night before Easter…kind of reminded me of when I was little and would listen for the Easter bunny or keep waking up and wondering if it was time to get up yet.  This time I was worried because I didn’t tell Jack and Casey to yell from their bedroom when they were awake.  I didn’t want them to come out and see their baskets before I could catch their reactions.  I also wanted to make sure we were all up early enough to play with toys, eat breakfast and get dressed before Mass at 8:30.  So I woke up three times in the night to check the time and then we ended up having to wake Jack and Casey anyway.

Jack was hilarious when he woke up.  He was still a little groggy from sleep but so excited because he knew that it was Easter morning.  The first thing he said was “I bet the Easter bunny hid something in Brady’s stroller for us to find!”  Hmmm, the Easter bunny didn’t think that that was the first place the kids might look or even think of as a good hiding place.

We all had a wonderful weekend together with delicious food, great company and the entertainment of watching 5 cousins, all under the age of 5 play and interact with each other.  It seemed like a pretty relaxing weekend at the time, but when I think about everything we did, it seems it was quite a busy weekend.  We went to the playground, got Jack a haircut, snooped around the hardware store, tried to teach Nana about Star Wars, drew a Star Wars character guide for Nana, colored in our new coloring books, went to a children’s craft fair, said hi to the Easter bunny a few times, played baseball & soccer, shot discs in the air with our new toys, played with new toys, played with the babies, went to church and sat nicely, went swimming in the pool, played at the beach, rode bikes around the neighborhood, went to an egg hunt, took part in an egg/spoon race, walked around the neighborhood, fought lightsaber battles with Jedi Bob (who apparently knows Yoda), played with bubbles, watched a little tv, watched the Flyers lose and win, cleaned the beach house for the next renters, played hide-and-seek, red light green light, and Simon Says and ate a lot of animal crackers and “dirt”.  And there was more but I think that pretty much captures the weekend pretty well.