Our first two days of summer were filled with thunderstorms and tornado watches, so we mostly stuck to the indoors watching Curious George and studying. Fortunately, the sun is out, there's a 0% chance of rain this afternoon, and as soon as nap time's over we're heading out to visit a few of our friends. I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!
Last weekend, Liam and I decided to check out the "Dig Into Art" event at the art museum. It included a few of Liam's favorite activities--sidewalk chalk, bubbles and watercolor painting. Liam dressed up in his favorite outfit, which he affectionately calls his Dinosaur Train outfit. It consists of his dinosaur polo and his "train shorts" (It is possible that Liam has multiple pairs of "train shorts, " but these are the originals.)
This week was a bit rough--student graduating, GED testing, seven new students last week, trying to work on my grad class, and guess who landed herself on jury duty. Let's just say that next time around, I am going to be sure to air all of my dirty laundry in front of that courtroom. The quiet route definitely did not serve me well. I'm currently listening to this podcast, attempting to study for a midterm, and looking forward to a play date at Storybook Island tomorrow. Thank goodness for the weekend.
This weekend Liam and I decided to try the Crazy Horse Volksmarch. It's a 10k (6.2 mile) hike, which is significantly longer than the 1.5 mile loops we typically embark on, so I was really nervous about how things would work out. After talking to a coworker who had done the trip several times, I decided to give it a try.
Until this year, they only open the monument up for hikers once a year, but this year they plan to do it twice. It was sunny and 60 degrees on Sunday morning, so I decided it was best to do it now for fear of encountering snow or wind when they open it again in late September. They divide the trail up, so there are four check points on the way up. Shortly after checkpoint one, we decided to stop for a little break, and Liam decided to walk until we nearly reached checkpoint two. I was really impressed with how well he did. On Saturday, the lady who owns the consignment shop in town gave Liam a Buzz Lightyear, which he insisted on bringing along. It turned out to be a hit, as 60 year-old men would pass us and shout, "To infinity and beyond," and it landed us on a local newscast.
The monument is a work in progress, and passing all of the dozers and diggers and blasting equipment was probably Liam's favorite part, he shouted, "Oh, tool (cool)," which made me laugh.
Shortly before we got to the top, Liam started saying, "Wanna walk, Mama." I decided it was best to wait until we made it to the top. By the time we started the trek down, Liam was tired, hungry, and ready to get home, so he started running ahead of me, causing me to say, "Stay on the trail with Mommy" and "Be safe, Liam" more times than I'd like to count. Eventually, I found myself prying Liam off the trail because he laid down and refused to go any further and carrying him for several feet until I found a rock to boost him back onto my back and into the Ergo. A couple of ladies stopped to help me strap him back in. I'm an introvert to the core, and the solitude is one of the reasons I like hiking so much. However, the camaraderie on the trail that day made me grateful there were so many people around us. When I mentioned it was almost naptime, they chimed in, "He's doing great, and you're doing even better. You must take him walking often." They helped me put it all into perspective. When I saw a little boy who was not listening to his mom, they saw a two-year-old who had just successfully finished hiking or riding in the Ergo for nearly five miles of a 6.2 mile hike and a mama who needed a little encouragement getting him to the end.
When I was in 6th grade, our class spent all year raising money to attend science camp in the area where we now live. Our whole trip was cool and rainy, but we still got the opportunity to go canoeing. I wasn't much for the outdoors in those preteen years, but for whatever reason, I loved it.
I've never been back to the lake where we went canoeing despite living only six miles away, but last weekend, I decided to take Liam there. He loved running along the boardwalk, stopping to check out the ducks, and listening to the frogs croak in the distance before the rain clouds started rolling in.
I was reading an article somewhere about getting your kid to love the outdoors. Liam loves being outside, and honestly, if I spent my weekend days holed up in my basement folding laundry, I might go insane, especially in the summer when Craig is gone for 15+ hours each day. Thank goodness for a kid whose willing to get his mama outdoors.