Saturday, September 8, 2012

Forced Family Outings: Labor Day Edition (part 1)



Long weekends, such as Labor Day weekend, require additional planning when you have a lot of busy kids and additional together time.  It is essential that activities are planned even though great planning doesn't always equal great execution.   

I am a fan of the Forced Family Outing.  If you were a kid and your parents said "get in the station wagon" which likely didn't have air conditioning (or in my case the back of an old Chevy truck) and you said "can't I just stay home?" you probably went on one.  If you are a parent and you say "hey kids, get in the van, we are going to the airshow!!!" and you hear the response "I don't want to go stand in the rain and watch airplanes" you have initiated the Forced Family Outing (we call them a FFO).

We started our enhanced weekend with an airshow.  A co-worker scored some tickets for me which is always good for the Irish Tsunami because you never know when you need to get out of Dodge.  It is no good when you spend a bunch of money and things go sour, like the weather or somebodies attitude.  In this case it was a touch of both.

I think it is important that kids get out and see the world, even if the world is a CH-47 Chinook helicopter which they have seen pretty constantly since birth.  They have even seen me parachute out of them.  They seem to enjoy them just the same.  The great thing is that most of the airframes have been around since the 1960s.  What that means is that if 40+ years of abuse from Infantryman hasn't broken them it is a safe bet my kids won't (notice I didn't say can't). 





As for the rest of the airshow, it was pretty miserable.  It started to rain.  Then the wind began to blow.  I put on my rain jacket and sat on the ground and covered up kids the best I could. 


Of course the weather needed to lighten some before the show started.  The kids began to whine and complain about being in the rain for two hours.  This is not effective, in fact, we tend to do the opposite.  The more they whine, the more I want to sit outside in the rain, even at the expense of my comfort.  As the rain let up and the airshow started, the kids appeared to enjoy the day.   


Action Stance:  ready to spring into action at any point!!!

It is amazing how fast things can be reduced to chaos.  Check out the last post.   

Overall, I think that the FFO was a success, if by success I mean that we were not sitting in a house telling the kids to stop jumping on the furniture!

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