When it was all said and done, a great time was had by all - especially Connor!
Well, once Kelsey finished Olivia decided that SHE needed to do some tricks. If you watch nothing else, be sure to watch the last 15 seconds or so of this one. Olivia tried to do the "catapillar" move. She's really... well... I guess you just need to watch it.
Wednesday morning started with laughs as Olivia entertained Connor with her antics. I guess this is why we have older siblings - parents don't have the energy to keep this kind of thing up!
Then on Wednesday afternoon we went to Stevenson Park (the one with the rocket-slide) and to the Children's Center at the Historical Society's museum next door. This is a "hands-on" exhibit that allows the kids to dress up and experience the "old west".
Kelsey was looking really fancy and too cute in her vest, kerchief, and boots (on the wrong feet).
We had a little tougher time convincing Olivia to put on the outfit, but once she was in she played the part of the sherriff in full!
Sherriff Olivia bought groceries while Kelsey played the part of the shopkeeper.
And she even put Kelsey in jail.
Connor even got in on the action and played in the teepee for a while.
On Thursday, Ben took a half-day off of work and we took Noni to Bricktown to see a pretty canal and a Bass Pro Shop. It's a nice walk, but unless you're looking for a good restaurant or bar, or an overpriced boatride, Bricktown is pretty much a whole bunch of nothing. The girls had fun posing with the bear in the Bass Pro Shop, though.
Afterwards we went together to see Race to Witch Mountain (fabulous movie!!) and took Noni to a great local restaurant called Italianos some friends here introduced us to a couple months back. The girls were pretty well-behaved, but it didn't stop Kelsey from knocking her full cup of Sprite off the table about 3/4 of the way through dinner. We worked our waitress hard, I think. But don't worry, we tipped her well for the extra trouble!
By the end of the day, we were full and tired. And I was a bit sore. Connor started this really painful habit yesterday of pinching my arms when he's nursing. He hadn't done it before Wednesday night, and on Thursday I noticed he was bruising up my arms. I tried to flick his fingers when he'd do it to get him to stop, but he seemed to think it was a fun new game and started laughing each time. Today he hasn't done it at all, but I am wearing longer sleeves...
Which brings us to today, Friday. It's Noni's last day here, so we're taking it a little easier so we don't wear her out before her big day traveling tomorrow. So this afternoon we packed a picnic and went to the duckpond at Hafer park. We tried to eat lunch in the pavillion on the pond, but there was a brisk breeze off the pond, and it was just too cold in the shade so we quickly retreated to a bench in the sun.
Then when we came home, it was time for makeovers. Noni and I painted toe nails and fingernails (ours included!) and then came the makeup! Kelsey did Noni's make-up, and Noni did Kelsey's. (Note: we didn't let the girls use dark colors on us...we have company coming tonight!)
And Olivia and I paired up as well. Olivia wanted to have my bright red Patsy Cline lipstick on, so I acquiesced. She's looking so grown up these days...
Tonight Noni is cooking us dinner - gotta love those southern women!
Part of the original building is still standing. You can see the shattered edges with rebar sticking out.
There are 168 empty chairs on a grassy field - one for each victim that died in the bombing. The chairs are in 9 rows - each row representing one floor of the building. The chairs are placed on specific rows depending on which floor the victim was on when he/she died. Partway around the field, I noticed that there were also many smaller chairs in the rows - representing the children that died.
There's a wall made up of some of the ceramic plaques sent in by the many children that participated in the recovery effort.
There were several of these that really brought it home what a heart-wrenching tragedy this was for the children of Oklahoma.
Some of the original "memorial wall" has been left with many items left over the years - pictures, crosses, wreaths, etc. Olivia even added her hairbow to the memorial.
I can't say enough how much this visit impacted me. I haven't had to explain tragedy like this to my kids before, and it really brings home the senseless nature of terrorism. The victims are most often the innocent. I know the scriptures tell us that things will get worse before they get better, but I hope that there aren't too many more occasions like this that will cause the nation to weep.
We ended up at a very busy playground and came home around 1:30 or 2:00 just plain tuckered out! Well, the adults were, anyway. The kids were ready for the next adventure.
This same rule applies for all the bronz statues...
The real thing was bigger and better than the statues, but the girls weren't allowed to ride those.
There were birds, birds everywhere! Their chittering and twittering and song were so loud the whole day. It was beautiful.
There are several rhinos... (note Olivia's sly look in this picture!)
We also got some great footage of the lion "cubs". They weren't actually watching US in this video, by the way - their food/meat cart was going by.
And bison are big, by the way.
Eventually Connor woke up to join the fun. He was making a rather detached face, and when I tried to capture it on camera, he turned and gave me this cheesy grin he's been doing lately. He squints his eyes up really tight - so cute!
As we passed the eagles, the girls had to see how they compared. Kelsey has a good way yet to go.
Olivia, not so much...
The elk gave us a dirty look. It must have known we were taking the picture to make Mike jealous.
The daffodils were out in great numbers, and the the wind...!
And in the end, I wore them plumb out.
He perked up on the way home though. Here he's wearing the cool sunglasses Olivia got at the zoo store. What a cool dude!!