A few months ago, E was talking to a co-worker of his who has 3 children. The oldest is in 3rd grade or so, the middle child is about to start kkindergarten, and the youngest child is 4. This co-worker was telling E that their family has started a tradition of taking the child starting kkindergarten on a special trip. Just Mommy, Daddy, and the soon-to-be kindergartner. They go somewhere fun over night and make it a big "wow, look how big and special you are" kind of trip.
E and I thought this was a wonderful idea. We contemplating doing the exact same thing with our kids. However, we have this one little issue that E's co-worker does not. We have a seven month old baby boy. One who really doesn't like leaving his momma, and really REALLY doesn't like eating from anything other than momma.
With that in mind, we came up with a revised plan. We'd make a family trip a few weekends before school starts as our "Kindergarten Send Off Trip". This year for O and next year for A.
We went on that trip this past weekend. We spent all day Saturday and Sunday in Chattanooga, TN. We went to the Discovery Children's museum, hung out in the water features (we spent a great deal of our time there Saturday and Sunday. very nice and very free. ) and went to the zoo, more water features, and a train hotel to look around.
We had a wonderful weekend, full of fun and of memories. We also learned a few things. Among the things we learned:
I still hates the car. Probably loathes the car. He cried the last 40 minutes of the way there and the last 45 minutes on the way home. We may start re-thinking our October trip to Michigan with the entire family.
O falls asleep super fast. We've always known this, but its still amazing to watch. She was sleeping in a matter of 3 minutes when we got back to the hotel on Saturday night. How I wish I possessed this gift!
A sleeps hard and deep. We've known this, too. Mainly because of his nightly peeing incidents (he's still in a pull-up at night with out an end in sight. He hasn't stayed dry at night. Ever.) He woke up on Sunday with a mystery boo-boo. He had some sort of rug burn near his eye that he didn't have when he went to sleep the night before. He must have either fallen out of bed or something of that nature. (We asked. He didn't remember.) A also slept through all of I's crying on the way home, which was seriously loud.
I is a super light sleeper. Any little tiny noise and he pops up to a standing position. He didn't sleep well in the crib from the hotel. He ended up sleeping on my chest most of the night.
The kids are interested in very different things. O loved the art section of the children's museum. Austin loved the Dinosaur part. O loved the flowers gift shop of the hotel we went to visit and A loved the trains (the reason we went to look and hang out at that hotel)
We've outgrown the use of a double stroller. We borrowed a Sit-and-Stand Deluxe from a friend. We used it once during our trip and decided it was too big. Plus, Zeke only sat in it for a total of 10 minutes before wanting to be held. I am glad that we borrowed it, though, since that particular stroller has been on my want-list for a while now. I guess I can cross that off.
Our big kids are going to miss each other when O starts school. Sometimes they fight non-stop. Other times they are best friends. This past weekend was the latter. They played so well together.