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October 10, 2003
1, 2, 3, 5 years ago

Playing with Leaves and a Green Choo-choo

Jet was up a lot last night. I think that the pepperoni and Triscuits dried him out. All that salt didn't do him much good. So he drank two entire sippy cups of water, and John ended up sleeping with him. Ah well. We learn.

I slept in until the last minute. Then we took Jet to Joan's. He was munching one of the oatmeal based Quaker Oats toaster pastry things. He'd eaten nearly the whole thing. When we got to Joan's, he asked for more, so Joan gave him one of Haley's chocolate ones that are frosted with chocolate. Turns out he ate that, too. He was a pretty hungry little guy, I guess.

John and I went to the Erie Uptown Cafe and he got an apple fritter and I got a sausage and cheese croissant. It was really good. Enough substance to pad the penicillin I was taking. I was glad of that. We worked.

When we got Jet, I nursed him and he went to sleep, so I went to sleep, too. Kind of. I napped pretty fitfully for being so tired, but it was a good thing, as I felt a lot better when I woke up. Lunch was just leftovers. John then took over and I got to work a bit more until 3.

John said that he'd be done 'soon'... so Jet and I played for a while on the porch. Eventually, Jet made a beeline for his sandbox, and he played there for a good long while. I looked over the tomato plants and they are, indeed, ready to get uprooted and tossed. They're all dried out, dying off, and sad. There are dozens of tiny tomatoes on the ground all around them, both green and red. I guess they all just fell off, sadly. I managed to pick a few more that were good, and got them inside, but that was about it. There are some more big, green tomatoes, still. I may just do what Isabel did, and snip those and put them in the garage.

Eventually, I managed to get the leaf rake out of the garden shed, and started raking a pile of gold, red, and brown leaves together. Intrigued, Jet came out of his sandbox to see what I was doing, and pretty soon, he was plowing through any pile I made and giggling. I wasn't actually raking to gather the leaves together. I was just raking so that Jet would have something else to play in.

We had a blast. It was lots of fun, and the leaves were all crunchy and beautiful and light and easy to fling in all directions. Jet did all of that, but he loved wading through them and scattering them that way the most. He would even just dive into the middle of them, all limbs waving wildly, to spread them in all directions. He drove his little car through them. He would then pile out and run around in circles through them. He really loved it.

John didn't finish what he was doing until 5. He joined us outside, and Jet would not leave the leaves. Hee. After a while, I went inside, packed the car with all the stuff we'd need for an evening out, and got everything ready. Then I just waited. John eventually popped in to say that Jet had climbed into the car, and then we were off.

Franklin-Covey had called, earlier in the day, to say that my Cranium refill was in, and they were just checking on my address to send it to me. I called them back to tell them that we'd be by later, and I'd like to pick it up myself. So we went there first. I'd also looked up "Quickmist" on the Web and found out that it's actually a William Sonoma exclusive. No one else sells that particular mister. It also turned out that there's a WS right in Flat Irons mall, which we hadn't known before. I guess we rarely get to that end of the mall. But it's a whole lot closer than Cherry Creek to us.

So we did the Franklin Covey place first, and picked it up almost immediately. Then Jet decided to walk around the strip mall, in directions we would never have gone. While we were walking, we remembered that there's a little shuttle that wanders around the five big shopping areas in that area, and links this little strip mall to the main mall. Jet got one look at it and yelled, "Choo-choo!!"

So we rode the little green choo-choo. It's called the Zip in the Boulder tradition of naming its public transport routes things like Hop, Skip, and Jump. It has multiple cars all linked in line to the 'engine', and it has its own trails through the whole complex. They run on propane, so they're really quiet. Jet loved it. He perched up on the seat to take in everything. The driver even gave him a little temporary tattoo that portrayed the Zip. John kept it for him for later. The great good thing was that they ran until 9 pm on Fridays and Saturdays, so we could do all our shopping, maybe have some dinner, and then get back, no problem.

So we went.

The Zip drops are all along one side of the main mall. We just hopped off at the first one that was right at the mall, and Jet jumped down, himself, and started swerving out into the street. We corralled him pretty quickly, and headed him towards the mall. He went at a flat out run. Whee... energetic boy!

We followed him in, guided him to the escalator, and he took my hand as he stepped on. That was good. He walked right off, no problem, and we headed down the mall. For about four stores. Then I saw the Mrs. Fields cookies, and said something about getting a Chocolate Chip Cookie. Jet picked up on the chocolate cookie part, and started chanting that he wanted one, too. But, in the end, he picked a sugar cookie studded with M&M's. John and I each got a semi-sweet chocolate chip cookie with nuts.

The funny thing is that Jet took his cookie, bit one M&M out of it, and then handed it to me, "I done. I done." So I put his cookie away just as he darted into a toy store on seeing a really big train set. John finished his cookie, first, and followed him. I enjoyed mine thoroughly, and then followed them in for a while. Jet just liked looking and playing with everything for a while. After he was done with the electric train, he played with the electrical cars, and then he started playing with the wooden trains. When he was done with that, he was guided, easily enough, back outside.

A few more stores were run by, and then he swerved into the Make a Bear shop, and he watched a lady stuff a bunch of rabbits for some girls that were coming to make their own toys. He loved the fluff machine. He also got to see the hearts, the sound makers, and he played with some of the clothing as well. He wandered about to his heart's content and then was willing to head on. This time, though, he was willing to get picked up and we just walked past furniture, accessories, and clothing stores, so he wasn't as into everything.

We got to William Sonoma, and I shopped around some. The QuickMist mister was the one thing that they were out of. I did, however, manage to get my microplane grater and a ceramic juillian maker/pseudo-mandolin. I liked the price and the fact that it couldn't rust. No fancy knife. But John and Jet discovered a Halloween cookie cutter and decoration set. Jet grabbed one of the display cookies and bit the corner off it. Oops. He ate it with no joy, though. I think it might have been salt dough. So he didn't fight to get more, but we did buy both. A good chance to make cookies for Halloween.

Jet was getting more cranky. When we decided he had to get changed, it was something of a battle to actually change him. Especially when he sighted the candy store right next to the bathrooms. When we finally let him down, he flew back into the candy store and started opening things. We finally just had to pick him up and carry him out. Luckily, there were huge, radio-controlled, wrestling trucks right outside. So we put him up on the platform to watch them roll, rumble, and basically tumble all over the place. He loved that. He had to visit one more toy store, before we were finally able to take him back to where we started.

John thought we might be able to eat in the California Pizza Kitchen, but Jet decided he HAD to ride the choo-choo first. So we went out, caught the right shuttle, and ended up back where we started.

When we got back, and the shuttle door opened, we nearly got blown away. The wind had picked up. We struggled against it and found that there was a restaurant there called Bahama Breeze. When we got there, we found out that there was a 20-40 minute wait. Also, as we came in the door, Jet turned around and ran into my legs yelling, "No go in there! No go in!!" He kept pushing at me to go back out. So we didn't stay there.

Instead, we braved the wind and headed along the strip mall towards the car. There was a Subway and then there was a Wahoo's Fish Tacos. When we headed in there, Jet had no objections, at all. John got a dinner. I got a steak quesadilla, and Jet got chicken nuggets and fries. He got a mountain of fries on a Frisbee plate with four good-sized nuggets on top. He ate nearly all the fries. He drank my pop. When I asked him if I could have a nugget, and he said yes, I took mine, dunked it in his ketchup and took a big bite. He looked at me, took a nugget, dunked it in his ketchup, and took a big bite. He ate the bite, considered it, and set the rest aside and concentrated on his fries.

I actually agree with him on his assessment of the nugget. It wasn't that good.

We headed for the car, then, and went home. Jet nearly fell asleep by the time we got home, but we kept him awake. Then, when he was home, he stayed awake. John went to bed at 9, as he was exhausted. Jet and I stayed up until nearly 10;30 and he finally wound down enough to go to sleep. A good glass of warm milk and a teeth brushing and he was asleep in nothing flat when he finally nursed. I took him upstairs, drank some warm milk myself, and stayed up a little longer than I should have to look through and sort through my Cranium organizer.

For all the FC says that it's a good system for looking stuff up, I prefer keeping all my engineering notes in my engineering notebook. Habit, perhaps. I also like keeping the really important stuff on my computer, so it's easy to search and look for stuff. Paper is so hard to search.

The puzzles and stuff are pretty cool, though. I think it should make for a much more interesting year to have all those instead of the inspirational quotes that the normal FC planners come with. Much more interesting. Plus having the answers pages at the back will make it less liable to be frustrating

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