Friday, May 29, 2009

In Praise of the Mini-Vacay

The girls have been home from school all week, which in the past has filled me with a sense of dread.  Not because I don't like my kids, but because I used to really struggle with the transition from full-speed-ahead at work to full-speed-ahead at home.  I've worked a lot on this in the last year, and it's much easier for me to turn off the work stuff when I'm at home and fully be in mom mode.  The transition period is still there, but it doesn't last as long.  And the girls are older now, and so it just gets easier and easier all the time.  Props to all the moms with the wee babes and toddlers right now--it's precious time, and also the hardest.

Anyway, because we are in a bit of a financial transition, we've cut back quite a bit on our spending, and are now looking for things to do that are inexpensive and fun.  We've never been big on fancy vacations, anyway, but I think the fact that we can't travel this summer could have caused us to feel deprived.

Instead, we made the decision to make every day this week a "mini-vacation."  We have allowed ourselves to spend a little money every day (always under $20) but do something fun, too.  We've hit the Butterfly Pavilion, an indoor miniature rain forest with dozens of species of butterflies fluttering all around (and cages of oogy bugs, like South American cockroaches and tarantulas!).  Friends had a free pass to the Railroad Museum, where the kids climbed on antique train cars and picnicked in the grass.  Other firends got us into the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.  We've gone for ice cream, and spent the day at a tiny lake beach ten minutes from our house:

The water was cold, but Nolie kept running in and doing this happy dance that Eric thinks is like Mick Jagger but which reminds me more of Steve Martin in The Jerk:

Eric's making a music video, which I'll post later, and we'll let you decide.

We're supposed to cat-sit for some friends on a real vacation, but Addie and I decided to crash their pad last night, eat their snacks, drink their tea, and watch their cable, which was fun.  Of course, we loved up their kitties in return.  Addie was very, very stoked.  And I got to have coffee at my favorite coffee shop in the old neighborhood this morning, so that was excellent.  Mini-vacation, right? 

And don't forget about what's in our own backyard.  The family of bunnies living under our deck come out every morning and evening to forage in the grass.

Today, I'm hoping we can head to the little mountain town of Evergreen, maybe for a picnic at the lake and some fresh mountain air.  Colorado is insanely green and beautiful right now, and we know everything will be brown and dry soon, so we want to enjoy the unreal green now.

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