Friday, March 28, 2008
SLAP on the forehead
My kids have the uncanny ability to suck me into activities I just KNOW I'll regret in some way.
Today for instance.
I'm returning to the land of the living after a nasty cold, the sun is shining, and the temps are rather pleasant. My older kids and the 8-year-old BEG me to take them hiking at the Carleton College Arboretum. It's one of my all-time-favorites haunts so I'm happy to oblige.
First we drive north of town to my personal favorite Arb entrance. But alas it's still too icy - about 10 feet in we realized we wouldn't be coming out without a broken wrist or twisted ankle. So we drive back to town to the common entrance with it's nicely paved path. During this entire car trip the kids are fighting over literally everything - dog poop, whether or not the neighbor girl can be called "calm", how to pronounce Arboretum, god help me EVERYTHING! Perhaps I should have driven back home, but such was my mania to get outside and breathe air that wasn't tainted with cold germs and other people's recent exhalations.
The older kids walked well ahead - that's fine - I understand their need to distance themselves from a Mom who dares to wear layers and a HAT for god's sake. I also had on mismatched gloves which just enhanced my eccentric appearance and inflated the embarrassing Mom factor.
The 8-year-old bounded up the path with zeal, and of course stopping every five feet to examine something. I know this form of nature observance has it's merits but I just wanted to MOVE. She pleaded to wander up the earthen paths but I stated "no, it's too muddy, it'll tear up the paths and we don't have waterproof boots on and you'll be miserable" and blah blah blah blather blather blather. She threw caution to the wind and headed up the muddy inclines.
Within 10 minutes can you guess what I was hearing in a miserable whiny voice?
"My boots are muddy!"
"These boots are letting the water in!"
"I'm hungry!" (I offered lunch earlier, she refused)
"My legs are sooooooo tired!"
"If Daddy were here, he'd carry me!"
It was a very, very loooooonnngggg walk back to the car. Somethings just can't be thoroughly enjoyed by adults with kids in tow. And somehow I always forget this, and keep taking them on outings that make me want to drink heavily within an hour. Like our train trip to downtown Minneapolis last summer. But this is what good mothers do, right? RIGHT??!??!?!?!