In her song "The Circle Game," Joni Mitchell sang:
And the seasons, they go round and round.
And the painted ponies go up and down.
We're captive on the carousel of time.
The song is about a parent watching their child grow up and, in one of the more poignant lines, she sang, "Cartwheels turn to car wheels." And I know it won't be long before that's true of Benjamin. It feels like all you do is blink and your children are no longer children.
That's why, after our family went through a really rough week (something I will blog about at another time), we decided to get out of the house and have some fun as a family. About 30 miles from where we live is the city of Shelby. At the Shelby City Park, they have a pool, playgrounds, train, and a 90 year old carousel. The carousel has been featured in Our State and Southern Living magazines. It was also the first time Cava has ever ridden one before. And boy was he excited!
He and Benjamin darted out of the car and up the hill to the merry-go-round.
For those interested, it's cheap, too, as tickets are fifty cents. They were the first in line and were scoping to decide which horse they were going to choose.
Benjamin chose one with an American Flag painted on it:
While Cava chose one that reminded him of something he loves - chocolate!
As the carousel started, and the horse began to go up and down, and it began to go in circles, I could hear Cava shout, "YAHOO!" A real Ukrainian cowboy! Now I just need to get him some boots and a Stetson.
After the merry-go-round, it was time to move on to the train.
As I was standing on the bridge overlooking the train, a little boy came up to me and asked, "Do you work for the newspaper taking photos?"
"Why do you ask?"
"You just look like someone who would," he said and was disappointed that I didn't. I think he had his hopes up that his photo would get published and he wasn't interested in someone who was taking photos for his blog.
Like the carousel, the train was on fifty cents a ticket. So they rode both twice.
After they were done, we let them play on the playground for awhile. While they did, I even got a photo of the ever elusive Big Foot:
Upon closer inspection of the photo, I was disappointed to discover that it wasn't Big Foot at all but my own son.
Before we left, we even decided to play a little family competition of cornhole.
It's funny how it looks more like Benjamin's flying a kite in that photo.
Since he's younger and shorter than the rest of us, we gave Cava a little field advantage:
Everybody had a great time and the boys were thrilled when we stopped to get a refill on their Roo Cups, which is quickly becoming one of Cava's new favorite things. He doesn't want to walk out the door without his Roo Cup.