Thursday, November 12, 2015

Veteran's Day (Nature Museum and Park)

Though Veteran's Day was on Wednesday, I'll begin this post with our dinner out the night before. Since neither boy had school the next day and Tuesday night is Kids Eat Free, we elected to ditch dinner plans and go to Denny's. The kids eat almost every single item on their kids menu. 

I sat between Amelia and Jackson on the booth side. Amelia was quite pleased with her freedom, though she traded places with James in the high chair half way through dinner.

We received all of this food (three meals divided as sample plates or the trio) for $14. What other place can you eat breakfast, Mexican, and Italian in one place for so cheap. Score!

After sleeping in until 8:30, Jesse made waffles and I began making lunches for our day at the park. We first headed to the Nature Museum, where the kids enjoyed posing as giant bugs.

Charlotte's nature is pretty lame with snakes and turtles (as opposed to the bears and cougars found at Western NC Nature Center). The kids watched snakes slither along the glass,

and turtles swim. James would have joined the turtles if he could.

The highlight of the Nature Museum is the butterfly garden. There are butterflies everywhere and they'll land on your finger if you're still.

Amelia, lover of all animals, happily talked to the lizard.

There's also a cool play area where kids can burrow through tunnels.

I know so many moms who rave about the museum and I always wonder if I'm missing something.  I want to like the museum more than I do, but I think it's so overpriced. At $8 a person, it would have cost us $48 to visit. Thankfully(?) are family is so poor we are able to attend for a total of $6.

Freedom Park is adjacent to the Nature Museum. Apparently we weren't the only people who wanted to spend a warm, sunny holiday at the park. The playground was chaotically busy. I didn't even take any photographs.  Jesse and I could barely keep up with the kids, so we quickly left the playground. We found a secluded spot for lunch in the amphitheater. The kids enjoyed dancing and listening to their echos.

As crowded as it was, we made time to play on the obstacle course. This has always been Jackson's favorite area at this park.

James was playfully aggressive, using all his strength to push the pop up bags.

Maddie chose to hug them instead.

They all ran up and down the field.

Amelia attempted to join a football game with some much older kids. I redirected her to the ladder drill.

Of course, the best part of our day at the park was having Jesse there with us.

I first took Jackson to this park when he was 2.5 years old. It's fun to watch him two years later, completing so many obstacles independently.

James' favorite part is always the train. He kept veering off, pointing and saying, "choo choo". Jackson took his brother's hand and led him to the trains before we left.

I love spending family time together, especially exploring outside. I appreciate all those who have served in the armed forces, and for having a reason to spend time together as a family.

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