Summer brings with it a host of must-do activities for families. There are trips to the zoo, to Busch Gardens, the Botanical Gardens, Water Country, the beach and everywhere in between. Still, some really good activities happen right where you live, hence my ambition for this summer.
Chicago has Cows on Parade, and Norfolk, the fair city in which we live, has many, many mermaids. And as for me. . .well, I have to two lovely little ladies who are desperate to join the ranks of the sirens of the sea. So, I thought, well, let’s see how we can blend some summer activities with the toddler fixation du jour. Armed with a copy of There Goes a Mermaid, I jumped on the ‘net and began plotting out where the mermaids are around town and how many mermaids we could find in a given radius. Before I even opened the book, though, I rattled off as many mermaids as I could think of given our drives all around town to the YMCA, school, and the various grocers. I think there are close to 80 mermaids in rotation altogether, but would you believe I came up with about 20?
Anyway, Friday, I took the girls to the zoo to meet some friends. Out in front of the main gate is a mermaid, one from the There Goes a Mermaid book, no less. I had really wanted to flesh out this mermaid project a little more before I told the girls and we began documenting our finds, but hey, no time like the present, right? So I took a photo of the mermaid by itself and one of the girls with it. What I’d like to do is amass a collection of the girls with the mermaids and make a little Shutterfly coffee table book, maybe frame the Norfolk mermaids poster and hang it up with a picture of Mo and Co and their favorite mermaid. All this whilst I clean the house, run my errands, work-out, host several playdates, finish Co’s scrapbook, and do my summer reading for my fall classes. In other words, do this in all my copious free time.
After the zoo, I knew there were two more mermaids that we would pass on the way home. Then I remembered that a friend of DH’s has a mermaid in her backyard and she graciously invited us to come on by anytime to check it out. Four mermaids in one day? Madness you say, but why not, says I! So, even though the girls were hot and tired from the zoo, the prospect of seeing more mermaids up close and personal revved them up. We were perilously close to nap time and I feared that Co would crash hard in the back seat, but I rolled down the windows, tossed some Cheez-its into the back, and turned up the all-day-all-request-Michael-Jackson-tribute-station. I was committed (committable?) to making our first foray a good one.
I think we succeeded.
(the boobies on this one make me think her names should be Chesty LaRue)