Growing Out On A Limb

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A Day Out with Mommy

I thought Oliver and I could use a day out, just the two of us, so today we headed to Presque Isle for a little shopping and a movie.

I really like getting alone time with each of the kids now and then.  When we’re one on one, Oliver and I just talk and talk without any other distractions.  He’s a talker anyway but I like having a little more time to talk more about certain things.  And I suspect Emery enjoys his own playtime too, without big brother constantly hovering.

The movie never happened because he remembered the “sunglasses” (3D glasses) from the Lorax  movie.  He refused to wear them then and had that in his mind so insisted that he didn’t want to go today.  Even coaxing him with popcorn didn’t work but no problem – we got our shopping out of the way and went to the park instead.

I took some pics of our day because it was important to me.

Recognize these carts?  Mama needed her Marden’s fix first thing!

Oliver surprises me all the time.  He’s quite set in his ways – does not like change – so I expected him to just want a cheese sandwich at subway.  It did start out that way but he eventually landed on cheese, turkey, and pickles.  I asked him three times if he was sure, worried he might refuse to eat it once we sat down, but he ate the whole thing.  And his apples too.

I think he loves the independence of sitting in the booth across from me.  We had a good time watching cars and trucks go by.

After a quick trip to Walmart we went to the grocery store – the only blip in our day.  Now, we’re still working on having him walk around the store as opposed to being in the cart.  He’s a runner so before we go into the store, I ask him if he remembers the rule.  “Yes… if I don’t stay close to you, I have to get into the cart”.  So I know he gets it.

I do my best to keep him engaged with what we’re seeing and buying through the store but still, twenty minutes in and he was running down the aisles.  So with him flailing on my hip and screaming, I move produce from the child seat (lesson learned)  to the cart’s basket and then buckle him in.  I talk to him about why he’s going in the cart and continue to shop while he cries and says (sometimes screaming), “Let me out of here!  I don’t want to go in the cart!  I want to walk!”.

There isn’t a mother of a three-year-old that hasn’t been through the same thing but still – it’s hard on a mama!  I shopped like nothing was going on, speaking quietly to Oliver and trying to calm him down, all the while trying not to meet anyone’s gaze.  I got a few people staring me down, as if to say, “How dare your child make that scene while I’m shopping?” – exactly what I was paranoid about.  So thank goodness that, in the next aisle, I had someone stop and say they knew exactly what I was dealing with.  Actually a few people stopped to say something along those lines or to smile sympathetically at me.  And it meant a lot in that moment – they might never realize just how much!

Anyway, drama over and we headed for some ice cream!  Houlton Farms Dairy … yumm!

Then, to insert some play-time for Oliver, we went to Mantle Park.  What a beautiful public park and I didn’t even know it existed until six months ago.

Hello up there!

That is one fast tunnel slide!

“Bumpy slide”!

And finally, an attempt at a fancy tree shot that ended with me saying, “okay, just one mo- …” and he was gone.  Oh well, this one is nice!

We had a lovely day, mother and son, in spite of the blip (and maybe even because of it).

We’ll get to the movies another day.



Father’s Day, 2012

I feel pretty lucky to know what a good dad is.  My father always had lots on his plate with work and keeping a home (something I didn’t and couldn’t appreciate until I had a family and home of my own) but he was always engaged, interested in what we were doing, fun, and liked to spend time with us.

Of course that description doesn’t begin to do my father justice but I say that to say that having that model in my own father makes me recognize the good dad that hubby is.  I am grateful for him and the huge role he plays in our sons’ lives.  He deserves the biggest father’s day possible.  Though we don’t have unlimited resources, I think we hit pretty close using what we do have.

Today we started out at the park and let daddy have some time to get some things done around the house.

This kid loves the park!

We played for a while at the baseball diamond, in and out of the dugouts.  Oliver called the infield ‘the desert’ because of all the fine sand.

Oliver’s sitting on the big swings this year but isn’t pumping his legs yet.  Today he learned how to drag his feet and make himself stop which of course made him so proud.  Baby steps!

We spent the afternoon at ‘the blue house’, taking wheeler rides and playing in the brook.

I swear, if it didn’t rain for three weeks there would still be a puddle on the road in front of the camp. And the boys would still find them irresistible.

My dad isn’t just a great dad but an awesome papa as well.  He has spent hours building two trails near the camp, all marked with orange tape so Oliver could follow them himself.  He just loves the boys so much.  I watch him with them and find myself wondering if he was the same way with me when I was their age.

One of them leads to this beautiful little waterfall where we threw rocks and sticks in the water.

Such a pretty spot.

I can’t get enough of these smiles!

Love this shot of Emery with the pine wall behind and the barrel behind.  I think it was begging for black and white.

We had a really nice day but this momma is exhausted after almost a full day in the sun!