When the kids were younger and we had a regular part time sitter, I would set aside one day each week to spend out with either Ben or Maya. They both loved those days, when they got to set the agenda and nothing much was off limits, but now that we no longer use a sitter, we’ve had to put those individual outings on hold.
Today, however, Maya was invited to her friend Greta’s birthday party which began at noon and went until 6pm. I told Ben that we would spend the day together. In the past, Maya always wanted her days with me to last as long as possible and include as many different things as possible. Ben, on the other hand, would say he wanted to see the dinosaurs or something, and after an hour or two be ready to head home. Not today. He made a list two days ago of the things he wanted to do. Thankfully they were all indoors, since temperatures topped out at around 98 degrees today.
We started by dropping off Maya and then headed to Ben’s favorite diner for lunch. Then we walked a few blocks to the movie theater and saw Kung Fu Panda 2. I must say that my favorite part about the movie was watching Ben enjoy it; otherwise it would have been the perfect venue for a nap…
After the movie we headed to midtown for two games of bowling at Bowlmor Lanes new place on West 44th St. This was a huge success, and a great find. Bowlmor’s original location is in the Village – not as convenient and they don’t open until 4pm on weekdays. The 44th St. location is fantastic and we had a great time.
Then after bowling we walked up to Rockefeller Center, where a huge number of tourists seemed to be photographing the cafe that takes up the space where, in the winter, they have ice skating. Not sure what the fuss was about – the ice skating is much more impressive – but we waded through the sea of cameras to the Lego store. Ben created three Lego mini-figures from their ‘create your own’ bar, then snagged three Star Wars mini-figures and an Anakin Skywalker mini-figure keychain. Only then did we head home.
Ben is the most appreciative companion on these days. All through the movie he would periodically lean over and kiss my arm, and while bowling he’d give me the running hug (which means you have to brace yourself or you wind up on the floor). After the Lego store he kept thanking me for taking him there, talked non-stop all the way home and said three or four times, “I’m sooo happy!”
Groceries and laundry got done much later than usual today, but as you might guess, it was well worth it.