A Flag, My Sister, and A Pig…Oh My!

It was Saturday afternoon, the weather was beautiful, and I wanted to spend some much-needed time with my 3 favorite guys.  The Husband and I decided we would surprise the boys with a Family Fun Night, but what to do?

I knew I wanted to be outside, and our activity had to be something relatively inexpensive. We are a family on a budget, after all.  I have absolutely no idea where this inspiration came from, but in moments, I knew what we would do.  I explained the concept to The Husband, and he was in immediate agreement.  I set it up, and in a short while, the family was on a city-wide scavenger hunt.

It was easy.  I thought of a few things that the kids could “find” around our hometown.  I wrote these things on slivers of folded papers, and placed them in a basket.  Each child took a turn picking a piece of paper and would then direct us to where that item was in town.  The night went something like this:

First up, Philip chose “A Flag”…and then could not think of where a flag was.  Eventually, he remembered that the library has 3!

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Next, John Edward chose “a place with a letter ‘d’ in it,” and to my utter dismay, we ended up at McDonald’s.  Oh, how I absolutely hate that place!

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The kids were already having fun with this, and I was tickled pink!  They couldn’t wait to see what was on the slips of paper, and they really enjoyed telling me which way to drive.  For the first time in about 5 weeks, we had a stress free evening.  The night continued…

Clue #3…Philip chose “a fountain,” and of course, we ended up at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital because my kids know that place inside and out.

They act so cool, like they weren't running to take the picture...geez...

They act so cool, like they weren’t running to take the picture…geez…

Clue #4…John Edward had to find “a family member,” so we were off to track down my sister, Caitlin!

Caitlin, an amazing aunt and sister!

Caitlin, an amazing aunt and sister!

After this, we decided to stop hunting to take a dinner break, and we ended up at a local restaurant.  I looked at the boys, cheeks rosy from the wind, with smiles over their little faces, and I felt the most serene contentment ever.

That is, until we were introduced to Philip’s newest villains.  Behold his menu creations:

The evils of tomorrow: a stapler with fangs, an alien, and...broccoli?

The evils of tomorrow: a stapler with fangs, an alien, and…broccoli?

Apparently, the broccoli has come to Earth to destroy it.  This is Philip’s very serious belief.  He believes that broccoli was never meant to be eaten, and that it was a huge mistake by mankind.  Can’t say I disagree with him.  Quiver with fear people, quiver with fear.

Back to our Scavenger Hunt!  Clue #5…Philip had to find “a piece of art.”  Now, we live in a city that has a fair amount of art to choose from.  He could have chosen from quite a few paintings, sculptures, statues, etc.

What did he pick?

A painting on the side of a comic book store.  Behold!  Captain America!  Thought provoking, no?  Hmmm…what is your interpretation of this piece?

Well, it IS very good, at least...

Well, it IS pretty good, at least…

Clue #6…John Edward had to find “a church (that wasn’t ours).”

St. Jules Catholic Church

St. Jules Catholic Church

Clue #7…Philip had to find “a park.”

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Clue #8…Last, but not least, John Edward had to find “a statue.”  Again, we are surrounded by beautiful statues in this area, especially spiritual imagery.  So, what was the beautiful statue that my oldest son chose?

Was it something spiritual that will move the soul?

Was it something historical that will rouse the troops?

Was it something beautiful that will stir emotions?

No.  It was this:

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A pig.  With a bow.  A freaking pig with a bow.  And look at my children, grinning from ear to ear, so happy to be with that pig!

Oh well, I’ll teach them culture another day.  For today, we had fun.

Our final stop was at a local candy store to get the boys a treat, and they wanted to turn the camera on us.  After about 6 tries, all of the pictures came out like this:

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I pointed out to the kids that they were all blurry, especially Jeremy, to which Philip said, “I don’t think it’s the camera.  I think it’s Dad.  Dad’s personality is just blurry.”

To which we replied:

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Dang, I wish these were clear!  Oh well, the memories are there, right?  And I hope they stay.  But more importantly, I hope we have more opportunities to make memories.

So, go make memories with your loved ones.  You don’t need money.  You don’t need a fancy plan.  You just need each other.

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