Monday, February 16, 2009

I’ll Never Need to go Skydiving

Brent went skydiving after turning the responsible adult age of 18, and his grandmother went skydiving when she turned 75…and I must say my preference in staying close to, if not on, the ground is a disappointment to the Smith gene pool.

BUT…I do feel comfortable with my contribution to the family tree, and I’m relieved that I’ll never have to go skydiving to maintain my confidence level. Instead of jumping from a plane, I bravely took 5 children (an infant who gets hungry frequently and often needs head-to-toe diaper changes, a toddler who is prone to random wandering and typical tantrums, and 3 older ones who did an excellent job of trying to be mature (that was their end of the deal) but are still likely to bicker about who’s first and tattle about who’s touching who at least a few times…) to the Chicago Field Museum ALL BY MYSELF!

I psyched myself up for the event when the kids showed a renewed obsession with dinosaurs last week, AND the Museum offers Target-FREE second Mondays for all exhibits (this excursion took place last Mon.). With a small window of opportunity, I had to think fast and ignore any rational thinking. So, the kids and I packed lunches and forged ahead. I did have second thoughts as the plane ascended, I mean as I fought unfamiliar downtown Chicago traffic with a van full of kids for over an hour (Brent says I would've gotten there quicker if I would've used all the lanes on I-90, but I stuck with the right one).

The jump was successful…the sights were breathtaking and the oohhs and aahhs were priceless, and though our feet were sore when we landed, we had a fabulous time! We did have to opt out of heading next door to the Shedd Aquarium to take advantage of their free Monday event, which would’ve maximized our parking/gas cost. But we were happy to go home. (Thankfully, memories of my dad dragging my brothers and I down “one more street” on Halloween to maximize the night of free candy was still fresh enough in my mind to help me make a wise decision with my own children).

The patience required by all parties involved (including museum employees and other museum guests) for such an endeavor is monumental, but the memories were well-worth the physical and mental exhaustion. And of course...once you've experienced being on top of the world, you can always say you've done it...even if you don't plan on doing again anytime soon.

Meeting SUE was the primary goal...and she looked great!

She's the largest, most complete T-rex skeleton ever discovered.

The kids were also quite fascinated with the Egyptian display...especially the real mummies.

We entered a "shrinking machine" and experienced underground life with enormous, moving bugs.

Allison's favorite part was pushing any and all of the red buttons in the entire museum.

Special Thanks Go To:

The double stroller.

My parents who gave us the double stroller this last Christmas.

The kind lady who helped my carry the double stroller up about 100 stairs to enter the museum.

The information specialist and security guard who showed me an alternative exit on the ground floor.

My wonderful children!!

And of course, my husband, for promising to jump with me next time.


Cody and Utahna said...

I think that was ten times braver than sky diving! Plus a lot smarter.

LIZ said...

Your super mom! I proud and amazed that you gave in and did it. Next time give me a call, we would be more then happy to go with you.

Robyn said...

The new family photos are great! I don't know kids that would get as much out of a museum trip as your kids. Are you back to home schooling or are the boys in public school still?

Smith Moments said...

We're home schooling again and love every minute of it!
We're lucky to live in a great school district, and we take advantage of the "extras" at the local school. Kenny and Diggy attend gym/music twice a week as part of a class they are assigned to. It's the perfect balance. :)

Jamie & Aaron said...

Amy-That looks like a lot of fun and a lot of work! I'm so impressed that you did it all by yourself. I won't even take all of ours to the zoo without Aaron or someone else tagging along! And I only go shopping with at max 2 at a time.

The Wills Family! said...

Wow, you are certainly incredible!

Nicole said...

I remember the first time I flew to Mexico with Courtney (and her bed and 3 suitcases) I thought I was a SUPERMOM. It sounds so simple now compared to 5 kids at a museum.