We made it!
If you recall, we attempted to spend a weekend at the cabin a couple of weeks ago and failed miserably. We made a second attempt this weekend and all was wonderful.
There are a few traditions we have whenever we make the two-hour trip to the Kashwitna. One is that we play Mad Libs.
Here's how it works: I ask Andrew for the more difficult parts of speech (adverbs, for example) and I take turns asking Grace, Spencer, David and Lillian for the nouns, verbs, adjectives and occasional "body part," "liquid," or "person in the room" (Darth Vader has been a very popular choice) then I write their offerings into the blanks, read it back and wait for the laughs.
Turns out not only is this fabulous 80s party game a cure for road-trip boredom and a tool to boost my children's grammar, it's a fabulous child-psychology tool. Mad Libs is nothing but a game of free-association, a window to their souls, showing me exactly what they're thinking.
For example, once when Spencer was younger I asked him for a body part. “Blood,” he said.
"Good one, Spencer," I said, impressed with his creativity.
Later on down the page I asked for another body part he said, "brains."
"Well, okay, yes, that’s a body part," and I began to wonder what twists his little mind was taking. When his next selections were "intestines," "guts," and "heart" it was an indicator to me he'd been watching too many Rescue Hero movies. Time to cut back on those cartoons son.
Grace too is an easy read, she gave me "puppies," 'kittens," "dogs," and "princesses" in succession. An open book, she is.
Andrew's no help. During one game he came up with "eyeball" for a noun and was so flattered by the squeals of approval that that was the end of it, every noun from that point on was "eyeball," every verb was "eyeballing" and adjective was "eyebally."
I pointed out that "eyebally" isn't a word but it didn't matter, they couldn't hear me over the shrieks of laughter which of course just encouraged him. We've gone through similar rounds with "toe nail" and "bellybutton." Sigh. You can dress 'em up but you can't take 'em out, you know?
So here's the story from this weekend:
"Good vacations are worth their weight in Jedi Knights. A smelly vacation for your and your burping family is to visit the Rocky Mosquito Mountains in Colorado. The first time you slime these wiggly mountains your ear wax will thump saucily. If you're into camping, fishing or tripping visit Arizona's Grand Canyon and enjoy a land of stinky landscapes and Martian saliva. Upon sight of this mile-deep, magnificent 1 1/2 billion year-old spaghetti your toenails will drop open and you won't be able to catch your buttocks. And then, there is the city of the Golden Gate Lady Bugs--San Francisco--where you can spend a day watching cable vampires loaded with wide-eyed unicorns or climb the city's livers. A place made famous by Tony Bennett's poopy rendition of 'I Left My Eyeball in San Francisco." So will you!"
Technorati tags: Alaska, motherhood, Mad Libs, parenting