It started out rather unassuming; it was a dull Thursday afternoon. Brian was going to the gym after work, so Scotty and I were rolling solo through dinner. The weather in Vegas is changing, and while it's not cool yet, it's also not 115 degrees. Playing outside is finally an option. I wanted to share a new drink made with chia seeds I had been making all week with a friend, and the only person that could appreciate it (and have the sense of adventure to drink it) was Courtney. I texted her, she texted back, and I broke out the ingredients for a lemon chia fresca. And so, an impromptu play date sprouted.
The kids were wild in the house. Scotty inexplicably punched Sam in the gut because she refused to give up her toy. After a tearful time-out, Court and I realized we needed to let the animals run before things got out of control.
I broke out the stomp rockets. Peace flourished.
Notice how Carson and Sam have their eyes on the sky? Our fearful Bear had no interest in getting beaned by a stomp rocket. He was hightailing it to higher ground.
Courtney and I were so delighted by how consumed the children were that we went to the big freezer in the garage and got a giant bag of ice that had probably been sitting in there since 2011. It wasn't useable for beverages anymore, so why not play with it?
The kids loved it. Our street turned into mess of ice chips, ice balls, and tiny puddles. Scotty threw an ice ball and hit Sam, and me, hoping to avoid yet another time-out, told Sam to just chuck one back at Scott. She was delighted at this idea. It ended up hitting me (though he howled in protest), but an eye for an eye, right? Seemed like a primitive way to handle things.
A few neighbors drove by. Most smiled. I assured them it was just ice and they seemed to understand. I mean, in 90 minutes, there would be no evidence of our play date.
If ice is good enough for sea otters and pandas at the zoo, it was good enough for our little monkeys. Ice is the overlooked play toy of the Pre-K set. For Scotty's next birthday, I think I'm just going to hand out three pound bags of ice to all the children and tell them to go play in the street. Brilliant and cost-effective.
They were red-faced, sweaty, and grinning from ear to ear. There may have been some ice-down-the-shirt moments, but the squeals and giggles were worth it. And for something so easy and cheap, it turned into an epic play date that actually allowed the moms to be able to finish a conversation. Mostly.