Fun Zone? If You Say So …
We went to the A’s game on Saturday and … yes. I took two small children, one still recovering from illness, to a baseball game. Go ahead and call the loony bin. Long story short, no naps + not eating well + being at a baseball game = unhappy children. So we left early. But the boy’s favorite place in the ballpark is the Stomper Fun Zone. (I spent about 4 innings in there with him, while the princess sat on her dad’s lap in the seats and charmed everyone sitting near her. No really, she did. It’s a little ridiculous.)
Now, I realize that we are at a ballpark and so a children’s zone isn’t the priority, but … COME ON.
There are 4 rides for small children — remember the 25-cent rides that used to be in front of grocery stores when we were kids? That is EXACTLY what these are.
Except now they cost 50 cents.
And seem to go for much less time than I remember.
There is also a small play structure with a slide and tunnel, and the staff puts out some push toys (think pop lawnmowers) and ride-on toys.
Stomper’s throne has also seen better days: The carpet/astroturf is dirty, frayed, and ripping off the plywood base in several areas. (Would it kill them to replace the “carpeting” every 2 seasons? Ugh.)
For bigger kids, you can get team logo temporary tattoos, a play house/coloring station, and a speed pitch game, which requires you to buy tokens.
Also? If you’re going to have rides that only take quarters, the person manning the sad “booth” (a fold-up table in front of an obvious storage area) should … I don’t know … HAVE QUARTERS. Or (gasp!) put in a change machine.
I really shouldn’t have to go sweet-talk concession vendors into changing out some quarters for me.
I haven’t been to AT&T park with the kids yet, but their version sounds better. The Coca-Cola Fan Lot (see that? They have a SPONSOR for their area. Sponsor = $$) is open year-round. Yes, year round. Even when the Giants are out of town. They have 2 super slides (within the Coke bottle), a mini version of the park for kids to play on, a giant glove, a fan photo booth, a Build-A-Bear Workshop (there’s that sponsor again) that sells Lou Seals (which the boy would LOVE), and a speed pitch area.
Breaking Out The Food Processor
The Hubbs is on a hummus kick. This amuses me to no end. When I met him, his version of a vegetable was a baked potato with his steak dinner. During the past 8 years (ohmygod we’ve been together 8 years?!) I’ve slowly introduced him to green things. That grow from the ground. And are good for you. And (gasp!) he LIKES them!
Sidenote: Can I get a round of applause for the man? He’s lost more than 30 pounds this year. Truly impressive.
So hummus. He didn’t eat it before he met me. Said he didn’t like it. Until he tried it at a farmers’ market ages ago. Suddenly, it wasn’t so bad. Actually, it was really freaking good.
These days, he snacks on sugar snap peas, edamame, blanched green beans, broccoli and hummus. I know. Amazing isn’t it? And even more recently, he found a recipe for hummus and has wanted to play mad scientist with it. When he found out that its cheaper to make his own? It was so on. Last week it was a sun-dried tomato hummus. Which was pretty good. But this week, he made pesto hummus.
OMG. First of all, I LOVE pesto. So this was a win. Second, he looks adorable putting everything into the food processor. He’s like a kid in the proverbial candy store. Also, I get to be a taste-tester. So, winning! Here’s what I saw him throw in there:
Hubby’s Pesto Hummus
1 can organic chickpeas
1 package fresh pesto (from Trader Joe’s)
drizzle of olive oil
2 large spoons of tahini sauce (also from Trader Joe’s)
juice of 1/2 a lemon
sprinkle of Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
Throw it all in the food processor and pulse to desired consistency. Taste, and add salt/pepper/lemon juice as needed.
I’m eating it with organic baby carrots right now. Yummy!
This Kid Could Charm The Rattle Off A Snake
I noticed something this weekend: The girl child scopes people out, looking for attention.
I noticed it at the ball game. She was sitting in my lap, looking at the people sitting around us.
Constantly. Actively looking.
Then, she suddenly sat bolt-upright. She wiggled her bottom and bobbed her head around.
I looked to see what she was looking at: An older lady was smiling at her and waving.
I looked down at the kid. Big, cheesy, toothless smile with a slight head tilt, looking straight at the lady.
She did the same thing to the older gent sitting in front of us while she was sitting with her dad. Apparently, she cooed at him too.
He asked the Hubbs if he could take a picture of her (with his phone) to send to his wife or daughter. (Hubbs can’t remember which.)
(This is the polar opposite of her brother, who will jump into your arms and try to bury his head in your neck if someone smiles/looks/talks to him.)
At Trader Joe’s the next day, she drew in three more people.
As in, they came up to our shopping cart, knelt down to her level, and told me that I had an adorable little girl. She smiled at them like they hung the moon and they walked away happy.
I am in so much trouble.
Also, I cut her bangs this weekend. They were getting in her eyes and she was annoyed with them.