Despite the fact that a Lupus flare is coming on.
Despite the fact that I had played happy homemaker and made applesauce and banana bread that morning, as well as managed to get two loads of laundry on the line and could have really used a naptime.
Despite the fact that Cuckoo woke up a full hour earlier than he should have.
Despite the fact that we would only have 2 1/2 hours between preschool pick-up and big kids pick-up.
We were going to have fun, dagnabbit.
So I loaded up the little bikes, packed a lunch, and surprised Turken with the news that we were skipping naps and going on a bike ride instead. The plan was to have our picnic then ride bikes along the canal downtown. That was my plan.
However, one our way to the canal, the boys caught site of the zoo and decided that they would rather go there.
"Are you sure? You won't be able to ride your bike at the zoo. You've never been to the canal before. You could try something new!"
They replied, "NO! We want to go to the zoo. We need to see the giraffe and the elephant and the dolphins.!"
So, after our picnic by the gardens
we went to the zoo.
Where we did get to see the giraffes and the elephants.
Turken embraced the day, getting up close and personal with as many animals as possible.
He took advantage of all the zoo had to offer, including the bouncy bridge into the rhino exhibit.
Basically, he had a whole mess of fun.
Cuckoo, on the other hand, decided that today he was going to be afraid of anything and everything. Every time the stroller got within 5 feet of any fence, he flipped out. Screaming, he'd throw his feet to the ground to immediately stop the stroller, which in turn threw me over the top of the stroller too many times to count. Occasionally he ventured out of the stroller, but he kept a very safe distance from the fences, just in case one of the animals decided that today was the day it was going to stage a prison break and eat the first child it came across. I guess he was fine with the idea of Turken or me getting eaten, if it meant he was safe. He never told us to move back. Not once.
Despite the fact that he had begged to go to the zoo, Cuckoo clearly was not enjoying himself. Even the bouncy bridge was too much for him.
That's him in the background, waiting for us to come back across.
It didn't help that he has a thumb issue.
A nasty, pus-filled, looks like it may be getting infected thumb issue. He didn't unclench his fist all day, lest the band-aid come off and really ruin his afternoon.
In the moments between exhibits, when the danger of being attacked was diminished, he did bust out a smile or two.
Finally, at the bird house, the fear left him. He was able to let loose and enjoy the hundreds of birds buzzing by our heads and eating suet off of sticks. Go figure, the one place where an animal actually had the ability to touch us, he was completely fine.
Wouldn't you know, within two minutes of being in there, time ran out. We had to bust a move to get to the car in order to get to pick-up on time. As you'd expect, on the way to the car they found some other fun things that they just had to stop and try.
We made it to the van with little drama, but once buckled, the exhaustion proved too much for Turken. For the entire ride to school, my jammin' to Train's "Ways to Say Goodbye" (Have mercy, I'm obsessed with Train ever since we went to the concert. And by golly, one day, I am going to nail those lyrics.) was interrupted with Turken's cries of, "I wanted to go downtoooowwwwn. I didn't want to go to the zooooo. I want to ride my biiiike."
So, even though Cuckoo pretty much hated the day, and Turken apparently hated the choice of activity, I get to claim this as a fun adventure. When the little kids are older, detailing the myriad of ways that they got the shaft compared to the big kids, I will be able to point to today and say, "Oh contrair monfrair." (I don't really know French, just a few phrases to pull out when needed. Thus the phonetical spelling.) "You did get to do fun things like the big kids. It totally isn't my fault that you chose not to enjoy them!"
Have a lovely day!