All of this is to say that the situation more or less keeps us landlocked. Unable to walk distances - and my Mom being too aware to condescend to a wheelchair - our family outings are limited unless my sister comes and takes her for a weekend or so. This is fine, since with our oldest boys moving on in college and vocational training aiming towards law enforcement, they aren't around that much anyway.
But when my sister can get her, my boys do their level best to set aside time - including shuffling dates with girlfriends - in order to be here and hang with the family. Not bad. Plus they make sure to give time on such weekends to their youngest brother, who is slowly adjusting to 'his best playmates' moving on in life.
This weekend, my sister took my mom for an extra day, giving us a little more time to plan. Our original plan to go to southern Ohio had to be changed, due to the relentless rains that have hit Ohio since we decided to strip and stain our deck. Nonetheless, given the improvisational nature of our plans, we ended up with some good times and good memories.
This is Father's Day dining part II. Because of celebrating my son's first week of Police Training Boot Camp, we didn't want to pile on the special meals, we held off for me. We ordered a Father's Day special from Donatos (the Mercedes Benz of chain pizza). They wanted more, however, so my former chef-to-be put together one juicy, tender steak and fixins. It was delicious.
Homeschool never ends (see Part II), but we wrap up the regular scheduling so they have at least the feeling of 'summer break'. Here is our youngest, symbolically letting his projects press down on him as he wraps up the 'school year' ASAP in order to get to serious summer fun.
With the oldest boys back, we dusted off this old dinosaur. We have, if nothing else in our house, a massive basement with literally a half dozen tables for an assortment of games, hobbies and legos (that's for the young'uns). We leave this set up for just such an emergency. For the record, Austria just provoked Russia into another war in this, the year 1808 of the Napoleonic era.
Many of the parks in the area have at least some flooding. We went back to a park that opened only a few years ago. We were among the first to find it. It's now a park with a 'living farm from the olden days' across the road. The last time we were there, our youngest was barely walking. I'm not sure what he's laughing at, but it looks like the others don't either.
The boys together again. The beam of light was coincidence, or the Almighty approving of their time together.
The future police officer. We do wish he would do something else, especially in light of the Left's crusade to whip up hatred and violence against the police. But he wants to help, and this is how he's decided to do so.
Sometimes when the world seems crazy, the best thing to do is get out in it. A walk through the woods after the rains. You can feel the dampness.
Our oldest and youngest, along with my wife.
There are only two choices, and yet they look as if they are pondering at least four possible directions to travel. That would be about right. Our third oldest had a serious whistling fetish that quickly drew requests for silence.
Another look at the forest path. There are several at that park. It's amazing how such a small area on a map can seem so vast when you're within it. It's unlikely more than a few hundred yards from side to side, and yet if it was darker, it wouldn't be easy to navigate. Suddenly The Blair Witch Project seems more plausible.
That night we retired to the house, with windows open (no rain!), and played the boardgame Fief. As 'flavor' games go, it's one of the better. I could nitpick of course. But with the intention of bringing in some of the crazy of late 15th century feudal France, it does a decent job. The jostling between being fief lords and bishops and kings and jockeying for land and wealth and power, for a rather condensed game, captures the 'feel' as well as you can at that level. Our third oldest and oldest boys won (in an alliance).
More to come next time with part II of our weekend adventures. Until then.