Two “Life Lately” posts in two weeks?! How unlike me!
I’m hoping to get these out a little more often so that they don’t end up being quite so lengthy. I wanted to share with you a few fun end of summer activities that we’ve enjoyed over the past week or so, as well as a funny story about a tea party that ended up being not so “perfect” and how sometimes in life you just have to roll with the punches.
Last week I took the girls to Earlyworks Children’s Museum to explore and play for a while. I’ve found that this is a nice place to go when you want to play somewhere cool where you don’t have to constantly be chasing them around. There were not many people there that day so it was very quiet and we could take our time exploring each area. My goal for the day was to let them play in each area as long as they wanted to before moving on, rather than rushing through to get done.
They played with toy dogs (their favorite), played dress up and house, listened to a talking tree tell the same story 3 times, played with trains, milked a pretend cow, and more.
I had packed us a little picnic lunch, so we stopped for a little bit to eat in their lunch area. After they had done all the playing they cared to do, we walked around the corner from the museum and played in the splash pad for a while.
What summer outing is complete without some sort of frozen treat? Once we wrapped it up at the splash pad we drove down a few blocks to grab some gelato at Sam and Greg’s before heading home and crashing.
There have been a few other days that we haven’t really had anything planned and I just have not been able to motivate myself to get out and do anything. On these days we end up staying home all day and being super lazy. I let the girls play with play doh or kinetic sand, color and draw pictures, play with puzzles and Barbies, and watch movies. They’ve been very much into Home lately, which I’m totally ok with because it’s an adorable movie.
Earlier this week I decided to take the girls to the Huntsville Botanical Garden for a tea party. This was Audrey’s first little tea party! When I pack a tea party picnic I usually grab my insulated picnic basket and fill it with our lunches, some cold sweet tea (in a bottle so it won’t spill), tea cups, saucers, and a tea pot (all wrapped up so they don’t break). I also bring a blanket so we can make us a true picnic on the ground.
One of my favorite spots that Raley and I like to have our tea parties at in the garden is in this adorable little gazebo that is way in the back of the children’s garden. You have to go through this iron gate to get there so it has the feel of a “secret garden.” So of course this is where we planned to have our little tea party picnic.
It was around 11 when we got there so we decided to go ahead and eat lunch before playing. We made a bee line for our “secret garden” spot and I set up for our tea party. They were both so excited – Audrey because this was her first tea party and Raley because she got to show little sister how to hold the glass and put it down gently.
I took these adorable pictures of this “perfect” little tea party….and then it started getting messy.
The girls decided they didn’t like the tea I made. Luckily I had packed some juice pouches for them just in case. But they were nearly impossible to open! I love the Honest brand, and I frequently buy the juice boxes but we have the hardest time opening the juice pouches! (anyone else have this problem?)
So I’m trying to jab the straw down into the drink and it keeps bending. I finally get a teeny tiny hole in the drink so I’m having to hold her cup sideways to get it to squirt in there because the juice is coming out sideways when I squeeze it.
Then Audrey knocks her tea over because she can’t keep her feet still. I clean that up (thankfully I had thought ahead enough to bring a few paper towels) and do the same thing with the second juice pouch into Audrey’s cup. And while I’m trying to squeeze all the juice out of the pouch I end up dropping it in Audrey’s cup, spilling it (right after I told her to be more careful and not spill things).
All the while, we were being eaten alive by more and more mosquitoes. It was like they started to swarm around us. They especially love me and Audrey (we both have O blood types). I could already see her little arm swelling up from where they had bit her and I couldn’t stand to feel them land on me any more.
So I told the girls I’m sorry but we have got to move! I packed everything up as carefully as I could and we made our way to an area with picnic tables. The bugs were not near as bad over there, thankfully.
Audrey kept wanting to get down from the table and basically refused to eat her food so I found myself constantly saying Eat your sandwich, Audrey. Eat. Eat. Sit down and eat, Audrey.
But anyway, we made it through lunch and although it was a bit frustrating to have to pack everything up and our tea party was not ideal, I just had to laugh at the whole situation.
The rest of our time there went pretty well compared to how it started out! We toured the butterfly house, played in the sand, splashed in the water (although the bigger splash pond was turned off), and enjoyed a few other areas of the children’s garden. It’s safe to say we were all exhausted by the time we left.
The tea party situation made me think how I could easily post a photo of the girls on social media and make it seem like we had such a picture perfect, lovely garden tea party. But that wouldn’t be real. Real life is messy. Sometimes it involves juice mishaps and being attacked my mosquitoes (which still itch, btw). And sometimes it’s much more serious. There’s so much fake out there and it’s easy to get envious of others when their lives seem so perfect, but remember that they are probably experiencing some sort of “mess” too.
It’s Friday, yall, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend. Next weekend – COLLEGE FOOTBALL SEASON IS BACK! #rolltide