Memorial Day Weekend 2018

Perhaps they should consider moving Mother’s Day to Memorial Day because this weekend, for the first time in a long time, we had an absolutely glorious time.

This weekend marks the turn over from six months of harsh, hobbit-like weather. I feel like, for the past half of a year we have holed up in our house, lips chapped dry from the forced heat, eyes the shape of squares from staring at electronic devices too long, skin pale from lack of sun, in a constant state of annoying each other. Outside of the house was a terrain so unwelcoming you need to suit up just to enter.

But not this weekend! This weekend it was lush and green. And the the sun warmed your skin like a hug from someone you missed deeply but had given up hope of ever seeing again. For once the cold basement was a welcomed addition to our house, not a place to avoid.

Saturday night Adam took Jack to a Cubs game. But not just any game, this one they let 9 lucky boys onto the field to stand in the position of one of the nine players. Jack was one of them.  IMG_0362

Ian Happ personally signed a baseball for him.

Then, the next day, we packed up toys, towels, a picnic lunch, the tent, chairs, the wagon, a portable table, slathered the kids in sunscreen and headed for the beach.

It was 90°F out, so hot that our feet burned when walking on the sand. The water, in contrast, was a chilly 58°F.

Ben and Aaron, my more sensory kids started the day running into the freezing water then laying on the sand like beached whales, warming themselves in the sun.DSC_0022Jack and Sam created together.DSC_0015And there was more! Water fights.DSC_0163They dug this huge hole and buried both twins in.DSC_0083 DSC_0085Then later they used the hole for some game where they poured water in then dug with all their might, laughing all the way.DSC_0151 DSC_0152They spent hours shell and rock collecting.DSC_0049 DSC_0055 DSC_0069

Ben and Adam found a special one for me.

Ben and Adam found a special one for me.

They also did ‘shark races’ from the water to the shore.DSC_0126

And threw the football around a bit… We had a picnic lunch.DSC_0073Then, ice cream!DSC_0137 DSC_0135

There was some other really great moments too. Like when Ben was lagging behind the group, Jack ran back, took the chair he was carrying from him, and walked next to him.

Finally we went home and cleaned up. Ben and Aaron’s hair took three washes to get all the sand out. But it was totally worth it. The next morning Ben asked if we could go to the beach again. When he asked he did so with a bright red, sunburned face.

So, instead we headed up to the Botanical gardens.DSC_0171

It was another scorcher of a day, but luckily there was a strong wind that changed the weather from soupy to delightful.

We spent hours walking the gardens.DSC_0175

We smelled and touched in the sensory garden.DSC_0181 DSC_0183

We played tag on the lawn.DSC_0191

We found a dead bird and a few dead fish. (And live ones too!)DSC_0192

We had races in the maze.DSC_0208

Sometimes we just sat and chatted. At one point Jack was giving out math quizzes to the younger siblings. They loved the challenge!

I think the best part of the weekend was that both days we brought the kids some where picturesque and kid friendly then let the day define itself. I loved seeing them out soaking up precious vitamin D. I loved watching them exercising their bodies. But mostly I loved watching us interact as a family, making jokes, interacting and bonding, holding hands, playing tag or running races.DSC_0211


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