We went to Dave's company picnic tonight....tonight? Yup, it was at 6pm, at a recreation park with camping, but also large picnic grounds for group functions. There was a central area with a pool, jump houses and a huge inflatable slide. It was a really nice warm evening, and I don't say that lightly, as we got very lucky on perfect picnic weather.
The picnic area was covered in short, soft astroturf -- this was great! I loved it! I played frisbee with the boys for a while, and found it so easy to run and play on the even, soft, dry surface. I'm gonna have to re-think a real lawn for our yard.
Katrina had a great time running -- well, stumbling -- around the astroturf too. But anything else? Forget it. While I played with the boys, Dave tried swings, a bounce house, and a sand area , but she'd have no part in any of it, screeching in a combination of fear and anger at the offer. She sure is easy to find in a crowd.
We'd planned to make an early exit, which turned out to be before the scheduled 8pm dessert of s'mores. "S'mores!" Gabriel exclaimed. It pained me to tell him, "sorry bud, we gotta go...baby sister...." As usual, Gabriel took it well, and we successfully departed before Katrina reached a state in which everyone wished we'd go. (I hear kids have tantrums about things like that -- Gabriel, tantrum? Imagine!!)
While Dave put Katrina to bed, I went out for a very short run (haven't exercised in a week!), tucked an ATM card in a pocket, and stopped by Safeway on the way back. That's the sort of neighborhood we're in now -- instead of having Whole Foods within a few minutes' driving distance, we have two Safeways within walking distance. There were so many people out -- walking dogs, kids playing on scooters in driveways, pregnant couples strolling, restaurants with open doors. It's no Willow Glen, but it's still much earthier than our home neighborhood.
When I got home, the big reveal: "Guess what, boys -- s'mores!" Gabriel smiled, and Julian asked what they were. The boys put on their headlamps and we found sticks in the backyard and toasted marshmallows over the gas grill -- a poor substitute for a campfire, but it did the job. Grahams, chocolate, squish, and we had s'mores!
Gah, people do this camping? S'mores are the stickiest, messiest treat there is! I practically had to hose down Julian afterward. But his marshmallow-smeared face and wide-eyed fascination was great. Gabriel has made s'mores before at the CDC, and has a slightly skewed view of the process: "Wait Mom, you're supposed to microwave the chocolate!"
It's not quite like camping, but it was a nice time anyway!