Winter break

Today is day 3 of the kids being home for winter break. DH and I planned a day at the Museum of Natural History in Manhattan. Needless to say, such an outing, even with only six of the seven kids, is a production. Lots of planning…..

DH broke his toe last night (I can’t even begin to explain.) So either we had to cancel, or I had to take five of them on my own. That wasn’t going to happen. Especially after yesterday’s near melt-down.

One rule of thumb I learned (the hard way) a long time ago is that I don’t discuss big plans like these with the kids much ahead of time. This way when they don’t work out there is little whining and disappointment.

Another, is that kids like small, easy and familiar outings as much if not more than a big production of a trip that requires travel, planning, and is usually exhausting.

Today was a case in point. Instead of our big day at the museum, we counted out the money in their banks, did lots of fun math to total the amounts, and trotted off to the local bank to open FIVE student bank accounts. This including explaining to my four y.o. at least ten times that she would still have her money, just at the big bank not in her piggy bank. ¬†Luckily someone came in to use their safety deposit box. She sort of interpreted what I told her to mean that she was going to have her $18 stored in one of those… and I let her leave believing it.

The people at the local PNC branch deserve a lot of credit for their patience.

We then went to a friend’s to watch an American Girl movie on DVD…. for some reason the fact that it took place during the Great Depression was enough to get the boys to watch it. Everyone loved the movie. My eight year old son got a lot of pleasure out of the fact that Ima cried at the end, for some reason.

The last exciting outing of the day was a trip to Target to use the gift cards the children received for Chanukah. That was my idea, the gift cards. I must remember to post a blog about what a terrible idea that was.

They were thrilled. A full and fun day. So, so, so much easier than a 90-minute each way trek into NYC to the Museum of Natural History on a day with record freezing winds…… and, for the record,¬†I spent absolutely nothing.