Blogging about life in Minnesota, raising our six kids with Down syndrome while battling Breast Cancer.

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor in the morning the devil says, "Oh shit! She's up!"

Monday, June 23, 2008

Adventure Wednesdays

When my boys were little, and before Angela was born, I needed a way to spice up our summer, both for them AND me! Money was tight, so it needed to be something really inexpensive. Or, even better, free!

One Wednesday we were out running errands, and I decided to pull into a park we'd never been to. We ended up spending a couple of hours there as the boys, then ages 9, 8, 7, 6 were really having a blast! The following week on Tuesday my good friend called, "What can we do with the kids tomorrow? Mine are already bored and we're broke!" I told her to pack a lunch and I'd take them somewhere. I didn't know "where" yet, but somewhere! We loaded all the kids into my van and off we went on our first "Adventure Wednesday". I took us to a really cool rope park in Plymouth, MN which was about 45 minutes from our house. We spent half the day there and the kids really enjoyed themselves, and I made a discovery.

I was a young mom with all these kids, and realized I didn't have to spend a lot of money to have fun with them. All I needed to do was add the word "adventure", pack a cooler, load them up, and not tell the kids where we were going. To be honest, there were a few times here and there that I DIDN'T know where we were going until we got there. I had to drive around a bit to find a new park, or other interesting place that I could tell on the drive-by that my kids would love.

Adventure Wednesdays continued even while Angela was in the NICU 75 miles away and I was recovering from a c-section. The boys, then ages 10, 9, 8, 7, really needed some sort of normalcy to their suddenly disrupted routine, and Adventure Wednesdays fit the bill. During those 6 weeks they could count on Mom's undivided attention being there on that day every week. One week someone gave us tickets to a local amusement park, and there was was, three weeks post c-section, riding a roller coaster! LOL

Now that the boys are all grown up, and Angela is having her first ever summer without summer school services (we opted out this year!) she and I will be picking up the Adventure Wednesday tradition and adding our own spin to it. Took me 12 years, but Angela will finally get her adventure.

Do you have a fun way to keep your kids busy over the summer? Write a blog about it, and share it in the "Do It Yourself Daycamp" blog carnival!


Kathie Brinkman said...

Hey, I'd like to get in on this maybe next week?

Terri Mauro said...

Thanks for participating in this month’s All About Parenting Blog Carnival at Parenting Special Needs. Stop by and check out lots more good ideas for do-it-yourself day-camp fun.