"Wow. Gerard is brave." A friend of mine commented on my husband's seemingly superhero capabilities to take Laidy out to the grocery store when she was an infant. I'm not knocking my husband's superhero capabilities, I'm questioning why we don't call our Mommies brave for taking kiddos to the grocery store too!
I've thought a lot about that short sentence that was spoken to me almost 4 years ago and when I'm wondering how to juggle two while out on errands or a fun event, I chalk it up to what another friend told me to call it: An ADVENTURE.
So here are some adventures we've taken with the kiddos (or just one at a time) since the winter weather has made an official exit. Most of these events are FREE!!! (Note: I do not receive any compensation for sharing these events, all opinions expressed are my own.)
Easter Egg Hunt with our Church-I think we strapped Lochlyn to Gerard for this event and I was hands free to be with Laidy. She ran pel-mell down the steep hill next to our church in search of a purple egg and I couldn't keep up with her. Thankfully, she slid to the end as if sliding for home plate and didn't miss a beat. FREE!
CHALLENGE: ummmm, candy you say? I don't think there's a challenge in that except who gets more of it. ;)
Hair/Nail Salon Mommy/Daughter Dates (hair cuts and Mother's Day treat)-We both needed hair cuts, so Laidy got her first full hair cut where she made the decisions about bangs and how short she wanted to go. I am so proud of how well she's able to have a conversation with adults and express what she would like. Sadly, this was my stylists first and last time with Laidy as she's moving on to a new adventure of her own! :( Hair cuts: prices vary. Mani/Pedi for both Laidy & I total: <$100.
CHALLENGE: Keeping child occupied if they don't like sitting for a hair cut-Laidy did awesome just talking with Dani, but I had my phone on hand with Frozen on it to keep her occupied while I got my hair done.
ICubs touring of the stadium and field-early April-FREE!!
We met Cubbie, Laidy talked into the announcer's mic in the press booth, we toured the locker rooms and ran around the outfield grasses. You receive a meal ticket upon entering that gives you a hot dog, bag of chips and a drink. FREE!!
CHALLENGE: Getting your child to say "Go Cubbies" into the mic and not being afraid of Cubbie himself. We strapped Lochlyn to Gerard and he did great!
Vault at Capitol Square--Drake Relays--last week of April
I did my own rendition of a 10 year college reunion by attending a Drake Wind Symphony concert by myself and the next night, we took the kids to the Pole Vault event downtown that is in conjunction with Drake Relays. Laidy loved watching the men and women fly through the air and we met The Most Beautiful Bulldog!! FREE.
CHALLENGE: We strollered Lochlyn to save our backs but it was a tight fit to get The Beast that is our stroller through the tight crowds. Still worth it in my opinion. We headed downtown after dinner, but I brought snacks just in case.
Dentist date with Mommy-Laidy is really good at "reading" books in just about any environment. So while Mommy was having her teeth checked, Laidy read and eventually enjoyed IPTV on the dentist's tv. She was such a champ while having her teeth checked too!
Pella Tulip Time (first weekend of May)-It is possible to do this event for free or on the cheap. Laidy and I packed a picnic lunch and headed out on the Friday morning that Tulip Time started. Some things weren't set up yet, but that didn't keep us from having fun (and finding a FREE and perfect parking spot).
-City Tour: $5 (a great 45 minute rest for the feet if you need! we had quite an entertaining tour guide on the tractor pulled wagon.)
-30 tulip bulbs to be delivered in the fall-Laidy picked out her colors $39
-picnic lunch on the grass outside Second Reformed Church:FREE
-noon organ recital: FREE
-stand in line at Jaarsma Bakery for dessert-pastries ranging in price from $1.79-$3.49. We got a dozen puff pillows to share with Bible study folks that night. Well worth the 45 minute wait in line. Our puff pillow order was <$25.
CHALLENGE: Pumping in the car while driving without a pump bra and keeping the milk cold enough in the car while we were out for several hours. Made it! And made it safely home.
Kites on the Green (first weekend of May)-hosted by the City of Johnston, they provided kite kits for us (FREE), we brought snacks but ended up staying long enough to warrant buying lunch there ($4.50 for two hot dogs and a bag of chips to share), IPTV hosted a story time, Johnston Police and Fire were on the scene for kids to tour their trucks and SUVs, face painting (FREE), and Laidy successfully flew her first kite! It was a perfectly windy day for it and we had a blast. Lochlyn hung out in the stroller content to watch the skies. We were even able to stretch our time a bit by hitting up the grocery store before heading home for nap. (I was feeling extra adventurous;) )
CHALLENGE: Keeping the kite in the air without impaling another person in the park.
Community Service with our Church-we helped a neighborhood public school celebrate their 125th year with their Fun Run. We were sideline encouragers, Laidy is an expert cheerleader giving out high 5's, and even chose to run a few blocks of the race with Daddy while Lochlyn and I hung out at our post in the stroller.
CHALLENGE: Staying hydrated and bathed in sunscreen. We Krupkes are fair-skinned folk...
End of the Year Concerts (more like, Adventurous Daddy)-I've often taken Laidy to show choir events so it was high-time she saw more of the band side of life. Gerard obliged and brought both kids to our middle school end of the year concert. He then took just Laidy on a Daddy Daughter Date to the middle school musical "Peter Pan Junior" and she insisted on dressing up like Elsa...
CHALLENGE: Keeping the kiddos quiet during the performances. We bring a pacifier for Loch and a bottle. We bring coloring books and crayons for Laidy.
I was such a home-body before kids and I still greatly enjoy just being home, putzing around and getting things done there. But when we've got such great offerings in our city for FREE, I can't turn up an opportunity to sing "Let's Go Fly a Kite" with my girl while we are actually flying one. When you call something a "Date", even the most mundane of errands become fun for Laidy and hopefully, Lochlyn will follow suit as he develops his own opinions!
But just in case you're feeling the pull to stay home....
Sit & Watch the Rain-And that's perfectly fine (and free!) too.