Yesterday morning the girls had a fun time playing this game, called Blokus 3D, a gift from the girls' cousins on my side of the family. Seen in the picture with our kids is one of the cousins on Matthew's side.
Their cousin, as it turns out, is tough to beat at this game. In the past, my kids have mostly used the board and playing pieces to engage in a colorful kind of building freestyle. But this time around they stuck to the rules and they had so much fun that they specifically asked for the game again today.
We left Blowing Rock around noon, but before we did we stopped by a local park. When I got there I was glad to see that the park was empty. Only a landscaping crew was there. Mulch. It's that time of year.
We had been there for a few minutes when I realized that of the 11 men mulching the various beds in the park, 9 of them were wearing vests that clearly read "Inmate".
Let's see. 1 mom, 3 kids, 9 convicted criminals, 2 guys who were probably supervising the 'mates. I felt a little (massively!) out numbered. Could I just walk out (they would know I was judging them if I left now!)? The kids were having fun (and they'd never forgive me if I marched them out of there right after arriving!). It was broad daylight (but they were each armed with a pitchfork!). It was the optimist in me that assumed the higher-ups who organize prisoner labor wouldn't dare send serious offenders into an area full of kids (but we were outnumbered and they had pitchforks and we were the only ones there, and the world is full of stupid people without common sense!).
Yes, the world is full of people without common sense, and, as if to prove it, in the end I opted to stay . . .
so that I could blog about it later . . .
and not disappoint the kids.
And it was fine. If it hadn't been written all over their backs I would have had no cause to suppose they were (all of them!) criminals.
The drive out of NC and into Tennessee was perfect. The kids were well behaved and I didn't fall asleep. Not even once. Good weather, a near-total-absence of highway construction. What more could I ask for? We went swimming at the hotel (we're half way home!) and then we went out to a Chinese buffet, where I decided to try my luck with these.
Gosh that's an awful picture, but still, I had to show you. I've noticed that Chinese buffets tend to have unexpected things like this. If one has baby squid, the next will have several kinds of shell fish, and another will have duck feet. Why not?
The food wasn't bad. I had never eaten crab leg before, and the far more conventional fare that the girls ate met with their approval too. In the end my fortune cookie promised me success, Star's promised her money, and Dandelion's promised love. Everyone wins.