No one was in the mood -- or sync'd up with meals and energy -- to bother with a real outing today. Instead, we continued with the baseball theme and went back to Big 5 to get bats, then to a nearby park for some more baseball practice -- this time, including batting. All the grownups -- including Dad -- took turns pitching to the boys, and then the boys also acted as catcher and fielders too.
Even I had a chance to play, starting with a little catch with Julian, and then it turned into a pretend "game." I pitched to one of the boys, with the other boy acting as an outfielder and Dad as the catcher. If the batter hit the ball, he'd drop the bat and run the imaginary "bases," while the outfielder was supposed to get the ball, throw it to me or Dad the catcher, and we'd try to get the batter "out." In practice, the outfielders always ran with the ball instead of throwing it, and there were no bases and no teams, so the boys always scored runs, but it was still fun to throw the ball to each other and run after each other and yell to them what to do. (I still can't yell, my voice just breaks -- seems it will take quite some time before my entire vocal range recovers from my bronchitis bout.)
While we played the baseball "game," Mom & Papa Paul were off appeasing Katrina with swings and minding her in a toddler playground.
Gabriel's real mission today was to learn to solder. He got a radio-controlled car kit for his birthday, that involves some serious assembly. Before he and Dave could really put it together, Gabriel had to re-inventory all the parts he'd scattered all over the place. He did so meticulously, earning a trip to Fry's to get a new soldering iron appropriate for electronics. He tolerated the detour to the park to play baseball, but was anxious to get home to work on this kit. And it wasn't long before indeed, he was soldering components himself.
My real mission, as always, is THE photo-op. It was getting dark by the time I was able to assemble everyone, so unfortunately the best faces happened to be a flash shot and the best-lit photo happened not to have some non-smiling faces, but, at least I got it. We've had enough visits over the years that my photo books and scrapbook pages are becoming necessities to keep track of who was where when!
Bonne Maman and Papa Paul are leaving tomorrow to take their Californian vacation up north, with a rented BMW convertible (Mom's dream for her 70th birthday), and a few days at a B&B in Napa. I'll be sad to see them go, but I can't deny them paradise!