Mr. Bill is out of town this week. It's weird. I usually only see him for about 20 minutes a day anyway, so you would think it would just feel like business as normal in the evenings. But I feel at a loss.
Plus, I'm not used to getting the girls ready for school. I go to work at 5:30am, before they even wake up (usually). My favorite description of what it's like is that it's like herding turtles. Slow and painful.
The older two have to be at school by 7:45am and Zoe can't be dropped off at Mother's Day Out until 8:30am. So there's at least 45 minutes to kill. The past two days, we've just taken walks around the parking lot and sat in the sun. Tomorrow promises to be nice and rainy, so I don't know what we'll do. Bill likes to take her to Walmart, so there are several employees who know them very well. It's kind of embarrassing. =)
Today wasn't a rec center day, so I decided we'd try to stay out of the house this afternoon. I needed to pick up a jade-colored tshirt for Olivia (don't ask, it irritates me) and they wanted some flip flops now that it's warm out. Then we decided to go for a walk.
We have several pedestrian bridges that cross the river here. One of the biggest ones is the Big Dam Bridge, and yes, that's the real name of it. There's a smaller one close to it that the girls like to call the Little Dam Bridge, but it's really called the Two Rivers Bridge. That was our destination, but there was some construction going on and the road to it was blocked. So I thought we'd head to the Two Rivers Park, which is where the path from the bridge eventually ends up. The girls thought we'd walk all the way to the bridge, but it's about 1.5 miles to the bridge from the park, and I knew they weren't going to want to walk that far today.
This path is part of the long trail I frequented when I was doing my long walks during my half-marathon training. I didn't realize how much I missed it until we got on it. I was really glad to be done with those super long walks one the half was over, but I'm actually really looking forward to being back out there to train for the next one.
As we started out on the trail, this animal ran out a few yards ahead. I have no clue what it was. It looked like a giant rat, the size of a cat... really. My first thought was possum, but it was too dark-colored to be a possum. I wispered, "R.O.U.S!!" Which, of course, means nothing to the girls. And then it ran into a swampy area, which just reinforced it... ROUS's live in the Fire Swamp.
If you don't know what I'm talking about, I'm really not sure we can be friends. ;)
I wanted to get a picture of it, to prove that I saw a ROUS, but there wasn't enough time.
There was plenty of time to get this picture, though...
I thought it was a fake snake at first and thought it would be funny to show Isabelle, who is deathly terrified of snakes. Joke was on me, though... it was dead, but it was very real. Between that and the giant rat, she was whimpering on the way back. So I'm not Mother of the Year... again.
I wouldn't let the girls run in flip flops, so they eventually decided to just go barefoot so they could run. Olivia looks like a marionette when she runs, limbs flailing about. She'd totally break her face if she ran in flip flops. I imagine I look like Zoe when I run, just not so cute. She makes me giggle when she runs. But she seems to like it right now so I'm encouraging it. They can run barefoot as much as they like until the asphalt gets hot enough to cook their tootsies.
On our way out of the park, there was a turtle crossing the road. The girls told me to stop and rescue it, so I decided to appease them. I don't think I've ever rescued a turtle before, and I don't think I'll ever attempt it again. Who said turtles are slow? That bugger was FAST! As soon as I reached down for it, it spun around and bolted back the other way. So I went to put it on that side of the road and it spun around again and bolted.... under the van.
The girls were all in a panic, certain I'd have to crush the turtle to leave. But I was not going to crawl under the van to have some turtle go all kung fu on me. They were very relieved to see it unscathed through the back window as we pulled away.
I thought, "I shouldn't say the girls are like herding turtles in the morning." Then I thought, "No... that's exactly how they are in the morning." Trying to get them to where they need to be and end up chasing them around and hope in the end you don't smoosh them to death.
Definitely herding turtles.