When I asked the girls on Monday morning what they wanted to do, they unanimously decided on mini-golf. I'm not sure I would have chosen mini-golf, but if the girls agree on something unanimously, it is best to go along with it.
We chose a course in Manassas called The Magic Putting Place mostly because it had a castle on its course. The course was smaller than I expected, but it was very well designed and made the most of the space. It had the all the holes you would expect. There were bridges to cross, holes that dropped to a second level and holes that seemed straightforward but with a slight hill that made putting more challenging. It is a beautiful course with running water, trees and, of course, that castle.
Anne relied on her surefire tactic of placing the ball directly beside the hole before putting. Meg surprised everyone with several holes in one. Meg's success caused Clare to tear up in frustration a few times, but she pulled herself together and kept playing a solid game of mini golf.
After mini golf, we ate lunch at the local Cracker Barrel, which is one of favorite eating spots. Four-year-old Anne took the opportunity to shop the Cracker Barrel store with her new wallet. Anne recently insisted she needed a wallet so she could buy things like her sisters do. She picked an impressive looking Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles wallet and carefully filled it with the money she had previously placed in her piggy bank. At the Cracker Barrel store, she found a robot claw. She went to the register and paid for it with her own money. She was so excited to receive her own bag and her own receipt. She kept saying, "I can't believe I have my own receipt."
On Wednesday, I took the girls to Six Flags America. Our school participates in the Six Flags Read to Succeed program. Meg and Clare received Six Flags tickets for reading the required hours. I received a Six Flags ticket because I am the reading incentives coordinator for our school. Meg had been insistent all summer that we use the tickets and I knew we would need to go this week if we were going to use them.
One of the smartest decisions I made was to ask a teenage friend to join us. She is the oldest child in a family of five kids and she knows my kids well because her younger siblings are among my kids' closest friends. She was fantastic. She knew the park well. She would volunteer to take Anne on one ride, while I took Meg and Clare on another ride. And then we would switch things around and she would take Meg and Clare on a serious roller coaster, while I watched Anne ride the mini teacups.
After a morning of riding rides in the hot sun, we headed to the water park after lunch. The girls loved being sprayed and splashed. The loved sliding and swimming. Anne's very favorite spot was the lazy river, in which she could sit in an inflatable and float around and around. Once again, my mother's helper came in handy because she stayed with Anne in the lazy river while I took Meg and Clare to the pool. The girls had so much fun.