We woke up around 8:30 or 9. Paul was already out birding. The kids and I took our books and breakfast to the patio. When we had finished eating and reading (me: Middlemarch, Ollie: Magic Treehouse Christmas in Camelot, Moses: 100 Things You Should Know About Arms and Armor, Phoebe: Harry Potter & the Sorceror's Stone) we made a bouquet. I handed out clippers and sent them each off in search of various cuttings from the yard: Phoebe, bring me a white peony. Moses, I need seven daisies. Oliver, get four springs of mint. We put it in a beautfiul vase made for me by Angela for my birthday last year. Then, we planted some grass seed and watered the plants. Next, we took a walk.
Paul came home and we all ate lunch and drove to the Stuhr Museum in Grand Island. The kids had been there on field trips (one of which I chaperoned). Paul had never been, but he's officiating a wedding in the rose garden there in a couple of weeks. We got a map from the main building (where Ollie caused a traffic jam by reading aloud the sign that said "Sturh Museum Foundation." I wasn't really paying attention and it wouldn't have struck me if I had been, but all the docents freaked out that Ollie fluently read the sign. I forget sometimes that most five year olds don't do that) and headed to the 1898 railroad town.
It's a whole town set circa 1898 (I accidentally typed 1989--that would be kind of fu too, though). In each building there is a docent or "interpreter" in period dress who walks you around, explains and answers questions. We toured homes--the kids were fascinated by the stoves, the box grand piano and a dumb waiter. In one house the interpreter was so shy and akward that I felt like we had actually just walked into her house. At the next house a young woman walked out onto the porch to greet us and said to the kids "I'm so glad you are here! I need your help!" and she marched them to the backyard to take the laundry off the line. It was fantatstic. We went to the mill, the tin smith (the kids made a tin icicle), the post office, railway station, jail, etc. The kids wanted to know about everything and kept saying things that made my heart glad like, "Marilla Cuthbert has that in her kitchen!" or "Laura Ingalls probably used one of those."
Just before 5:00 we went to the early bird dinner at Red Lobster. I know, Red Lobster. But even in the big town of Grand Island our choices are Applebee's, Ruby Tuesday, Whiskey Creek, Perkins and Red Lobster. You know what? It was delicious. I had the grilled harbor platter (shrimp and lobster), Paul had a big ole plate of crab legs and the kids had popcorn shrimp. Our stuffed bellies suprisingly had ice-cream shaped holes in them (this is our standard joke when the kids CAN'T eat their vegetables because they are SO FULL, but then ask for desert) so we went to Cold Stone Creamery and headed home. Paul got pulled over on 281, but got off with a warning.
Monday was a good day.