Saturday, May 31, 2008

A Much-Needed Respite (Kung Fu Style)

I wasn't supposed to be in town this weekend.

I was supposed to be at the beach with my family and and our friends. But then I had my freak out and realized that there were things I had to take care of here and now. Things I couldn't do from a beach. It broke my heart to tell my friend that we weren't coming. (True to form, she was nothing but gracious about it.) But it turned out to be a good decision. I am going to be much more prepared for Jack's IEP on Monday than I would have been if I had gone.

But still, sad. I was really thrown for a loop by the situation. For a lot of reasons.

I've been treating this weekend as a cram session on Jack and autism and IEPs, but I took a couple of hours off earlier today to attend an event I thought I was going to miss. And it turned out to be a really nice time to decompress and chill out.

DC Metro Moms Blog was holding an event sponsored by Kung Fu Panda and Hewlett-Packard in DC this afternoon. We drove down, me reading my new copy of From Emotions to Advocacy: The Special Education Survival Guide the whole way.

I would have gotten a little extra reading in while Alex tried to park, but it's hard to focus (or highlight) when your car embarrassingly mom-ish minivan is careening through the streets around the International Spy Museum. Turns out there are about three spaces in downtown DC large enough for a minivan. And those are filled by Ford Expeditions.

Anyway, the trip was well worth it, as I got to chat with some of my favorite DC Metro Moms. My kids got to obsessively watch and play the new Kung Fu Panda video game. And Alex got to eat an excellent early dinner.

I am aware that there were activities for the children, but my kids were interested in two things: the desserts and the video game.

In true Team Stimey fashion, the first thing my kids did when they walked in the room was to pick up delightfully pink-frosted cupcakes from the dessert table. And then Jack licked the tongs. And then he dropped his cupcake frosting-first onto the ground.

After I picked up the cupcake, got a new one, and (don't worry) gave the soiled tongs to a waiter, we entered the room. My kids got a glimpse of the TVs with the video game waaaaaay at the end of the room and it was all over.

Sam did stop to get a bowl of gummy bears. It took him all of four seconds to learn to pick them up with the provided chopsticks. Apparently that's how you teach kids to eat with chopsticks: candy.

Jack leaned some exciting new kung fu moves from the video game. Moves that he showed off later on the street and, unfortunately, attempted on one innocent passerby. It's okay though. No one was harmed.

Quinn was the only one of my kids not entirely sucked into the video game. He ping ponged back and forth between that and the chocolate chip brownies. A combination of the sugar, the pandas, and the balloons made him chat incessantly about pandas on the way home.

Fun fact according to Quinn: Pandas don't sleep.

Photos from the event are posted at HP's Snapfish, which I use on nearly a daily basis (and love, by the way).

HP, Kung Fu Panda, and DC Metro Moms, you took my mind off of some hard stuff for a couple of hours. Thank you. (But I refuse to thank you for the incessant playing in my head of Kung Fu Fighting. I'm not happy about that one bit.)

Oh, and by the way, Kung Fu Panda people: mission accomplished. You created some obsessive fans. On the walk back to the car, Sam said, "After that party, I'm even more into the movie!"

My own little kung fu panda.


  1. Now THAT'S what I'm talkin' 'bout! Yes, some quality time as a family, learning as you go, having FUN...

    Way to go, Stimey! You'll do great on Monday. :-)

  2. Oooo, that sounds like fun! Makes me wish I was still living in No. VA.

    It also sounds like just the break you needed! Good luck on Monday.

  3. The first thing Little Miss Techie did when we got there was to head straight for the pink frosted cupcakes. As she was eating it, the virgin frosting slid off and plopped down on the floor, breaking her heart. Thank goodness there was no shortage of cupcakes! Oh, and Kung Fu Fighting is still ringing in my ears.

  4. Best of luck to you tomorrow!

    I'll be thinking of you.

  5. Good luck tomorrow. I know it will be fine.

    And I'm sorry you missed the beach. That must have been a really hard decision.

  6. So glad you had fun! I wish I could have been there!

  7. Good luck today girl! Prayers for you and Jack that everything will be great and the right decisions will be more clear.

  8. Great decompression therapy. We'll be off to see Kung Fu Panda this weekend.


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