The week after Easter we took our spring break. After a very busy weekend (Joel's visit, Ted's birthday, Easter, etc.), I planned for Monday to be a down day. We hung out in our pajamas and the kids played while I caught up on some house and computer work. Tuesday I took the kids to my friend Cindey's house. Every Tuesday Cindey plans to work on her stamping/scrapping projects, and she opens her home to whoever wants to come over, including kids. Many times she has kept my kids for me while I do a workshop downtown for my deaf friends, who meet on Tuesdays, but rarely have I been able to go and play. So I decided we'd do that. I worked on Kenna's birthday thank you cards (yes, they were late, I know) while the kids enjoyed playing. No one else was able to come, but Cindey and I enjoyed visiting, and another friend did drop by to chat for a little while.
On Wednesday afternoon that week I took the kids roller skating. We hadn't been at all since before Kenna was born, and Charis had been looking forward to taking her own skates that she got for Christmas. Unfortunately, she was so absorbed in the book she was reading that she left her socks AND skates at home and had to make do with dirty socks that we found in the van and rental skates. She had a great attitude about it and told me later that she liked those skates better anyway! Tobin didn't skate at all but spent the whole time hanging around the video machines. Bleh. Next time I will take Charis and Arden and find somewhere else for Tobin to go!! Arden had a grand time shuffling around the rink, though he did spend a little time at the games with Tobin. But he skated enough that I felt it was worth the money to get him in. I skated while holding Kenna when she would let me, and then I'd let her crawl around or cruise along by the table area.
Thursday morning the kids had PE, and that afternoon we visited Willow Creek, an assisted living facility that we have been visiting for the last month. (I will have to write a separate blog entry about that later.) Arden played chess with a man we had met the week before, and when we left, "Mr. Mel" had tears in his eyes when Arden gave him a great big hug. The kids love going there, and I was so glad that they counted it a treat to be able to go during our spring break week.
On Friday we went all out and went to the Las Vegas zoo. (I say that rather sarcastically.) I drove down Lake Mead to Rancho, where I discovered an enormous casino that I had never seen before. There I was, driving along past houses, auto repair shops, and regular places, when BAM! A concrete and neon wonder appeared, stretching as far as the eye could see. A couple of miles down Rancho we turned onto a street where small hand-painted signs read "Zoo" and "Zoo Parking." The "parking lot" consisted of a rocky area that could fit maybe 10 vehicles. I guess it just goes to show what Las Vegas' priorities are! Highlights of the zoo included the kids climbing around with some goats, finding a baby turtle who was upside down and "rescuing" it, listening to zillions of birds screeching, watching the two lions napping, and doctoring Arden's toe after a rooster nipped at it. The American alligator was MIA, but we did see the Chinese alligator. Many other cages were empty, but the zoo made up for that by making sure there were plenty of birds hopping around and shrieking. Two hours was more than enough time to see everything AND have a picnic lunch. I'm glad we got to go to the National Zoo and the Denver Zoo and look forward to finding another real zoo to see in the future!