We'd planned to meet Chris & Sonya in DC for a day of fun-filled adventure. The thought of adventuring in DC in 100 degree heat seemed somehow not so fun. So, they trekked even farther than planned from Williamsburg up to Woodstock to hang with us. The minute we decided not to do DC, the heatwave decided to break and the weather became beautiful. In retrospect, it was probably better anyway. It was nice and low-key and removing the pressure to Do Fun Stuff All Day made it easier to just visit. The girls swam around in the baby pool in the back yard, until they grew weary of it, preferring to be wrapped in their towels and pushed on the porch swing.
They came bearing gifts from Grammy Lindgrove for Kate's birthday, as well as the ultra-cool shoes I knew Sonya had found for Kate. Because they weren't planning on being around the next day, which was Kate's actual birthday, Kate was allowed to open her gift from Uncle Chris and Aunt Sonya. Sonya had inquired as to the kids' shoe sizes and, far from home and away from my children I'd guessed. In Kate's case, I guessed a 1/2 size too big and these fancy and fabulous shoes don't quite fit. Upon discovering that she would need to become physically larger to enjoy this gift she set it aside and announced "I'd like a gift that fits." "I think you meant to say 'thank-you'" I was telling Kate as Sonya, in the background, was pointing out to Kate that maybe she could get a job and buy her own dang shoes. Later the next day, Kate wore them around the house despite the size and I could tell she digs them.
We walked together downtown, grabbed lunch at the Woodstock Cafe and then dessert next door at Walton & Smoot. It's a drug store that's been there for ages. I used to love going in there to get a chocolate malt and I discovered that day that I still do.
We meandered along the streets where the cool, old houses rule. As we began making out way back to my parents' house we passed what used to be a Bed & Breakfast but is now, as of about a month ago I think, owned by our friends Frank & Kari. We are unable to talk about Frank & Kari (which always comes out sounding like Frakencarry) without taking a moment to imitate Frankenstein's monster - arms out stiffly, guttural "eeeeeerrrrr!" and on to the rest of the sentence. Anyway, as we passed and I pointed to it, telling everyone whose house it now is, I saw Kari inside with her mother-in-law, Dr. Haun. What luck! We got a full tour of this fantastic old home. The front part of the house was built in the 1700s, but the new part was built in the 1800s. It's extremely cool, with lots of nooks and crannies. There's an attic room that even contains a small bathroom that can only be reached by going out onto an upstairs porch, that was once clearly the roof, and climbing up a nearly 0-slope staircase and ducking into a doorway that is about 4' high.
Later that day we headed out to the Butcher Block Buffet where, on Wednesdays, children under 6 eat free and there's a roving magician. It was kind of surreal. When he came to our table he told a few kid-friendly jokes and did some neat tricks, indeed. He talked away while setting up a crafty little trick involving bands of material wrapped around his fingers. When one of the bands escaped him and went flying to the floor Kate pointed at him and said "Ha Ha" a la Nelson. I was outwardly embarrassed at having reared such a rude child, but amused on the inside...which is probably how I ended up rearing such a rude child. The trick that amazed Kate the most was when he sang his happy birthday song to her, forcing us all to chime in. She sat, terrified smile plastered on her face, through the ditty. After we left she said, awed, "how did he know it's my birthday tomorrow?!?". We replied "well he's magic, dear." Kids are dumb.