A Little Fun

My kids are on Spring Break this week. If you have been reading me a while then you know  normally we head to the Outer Banks in North Carolina,  but for a variety of reasons this year we stayed home. One of the biggest reasons, is that we are so busy running around in our everyday life we decide to just hang around our house.

TSM(my hubby) and I asked each of the kids what fun thing did they want to do, E said “Go see George Washington’s DC.” I love that and I love her, so yesterday we headed that way. TSM ended up having to take a business call which put us behind schedule and in traffic. After sitting on the I95 for nearly 2 hours and not getting very far, we decided to bail on plan A.

Earlier in the morning I had been discussing the Marine Corps Museum with a gentleman on my FaceBook page and since we were closer to it then DC, we chose that as our plan B.

All of the kids were fascinated by the uniforms and tanks and, of course, guns, but E was completely mesmerized. She wanted to know what everything did, who everyone was, what every battle was about.


Throughout the museum there are television screens that play short films telling about certain aspects of the Corps. E requested that we stop at everyone and for me to sign(she is deaf).


On the 3rd one she said, “I am sorry mommy if your hands are tired, but could you please sign for me?”

My hands were not tired, but my interpreting drew as much attention as some of the displays. Having deaf Chinese children does not make it very easy to blend in.

We had wondered over to a picture that caught her eye. E was standing there intently looking when an elder gentleman walked up and asked her if she wanted him to tell her more about the picture. She said yes and off he went.

What I love about this encounter was that he spoke directly to her. He never looked at me. He was soft spoken and once he realized I was signing he slowed down his pace a little, but he still spoke directly to her. They had a nice chat about LST’s(Landing Ship, Tank).

E was excited to see that women could be Marines,


but disappointed that her deafness would keep her from being one. Although she was consumed with concern for those who were wounded and had died, so I do not know that she really would decide to make that kind of sacrifice, but she is 9, so who knows.

Many of you know she is from China. She had a lot of questions about the Chinese and Mao and kept asking if the Chinese were bad people. We have a lifetime of discussions from this one afternoon.

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As we left she grabbed my hand and said,

“That was a pretty interesting museum.”

Me- “You’re right it was. Do you know a lot of kids your age would be bored in a place like that.”

E- “Bored. How could anyone be bored?”

TSM and I just smiled.

The kids were starving and we were on vacation, so off to a late lunch we went. We ate at a place that encourages its diners to toss the peanut shells on the ground. E protested, “no way, we can’t do that.”. She then asked me if it was OK several times and I continually said yes. The girl could not process the insanity of what was being presented as acceptable behavior and she kept her pile of peanut shells on the table.


Our other daughter, A, was in the bathroom during this exchange. When she returned our son H told she could just throw her shells on the floor. She didn’t believe him, so she asked me and when I said yes, she reluctantly pushed a shell off the table and watched it drop. The Boy(aka H) on the other hand was fling shells like they were rockets. The only thing missing for him was a sling shot.

At the restaurant the television was on Fox News Channel. The topic for discussion was arming teachers. M was watching and started making comments back to the screen. The other kids wanted to know what was going on, so we explained that some people think it would be a good idea to arm teachers and some people disagree with that.

TSM- E, what do you think about teachers having guns in school?

E- To stop the bad guy?

TSM- Yes. To try.

E- Oh, yes I think that would be a very good idea. If the bad guy has a guy then the good guys should.

Good point.

We headed home to play Wii. You will be shocked, I am sure, to hear I have zero ability to play video game. I never played them as a kid(with the exception of Centipede  occasionally)  and now I only play if my kids ask. Mostly Wii bowling and the Cabelea’s hunting game. The kids get a bigger kick out of my inability to master the controllers than they do actually playing the game themselves.

Dinner was a hodge podge of snacks on the coffee table as we played games.

All and all, so far, not a bad sta-cation.

33 thoughts on “A Little Fun

  1. *Reading. Smiling. Laughing. Experiencing a renewed hope for the future.*

  2. Sounds like a wonderful day! And what great kids.
    Also, I share your issue with video games. I always wreck the Mario Kart

  3. Aw!! 🙂 Sounds like you guys really know how to get wild and crazy. 🙂 I’d love it all!

  4. I loved reading this AGirl, since a big thing for our family has always been about making memories. I always tell people the memories you make with your children can be good or bad and it’s totally up to you. For us we always tried to make it good memories and now the fruit of that labor, which wasn’t really hard 🙂 has paid off. My children are all grown and having their own children. And they have turned out to be adults we are very proud of. Not only are we their parents but we are all friends. So continue to make those wonderful memories with your beautiful children.

    • I’m with you! Building good positive memories is very important to us too.

      I am glad your family is doing so well!

  5. Sounds like the perfect Vacation! And very similar to what we are doing here! Hanging out, movies, games, shooting and just generally goofing off! 🙂

  6. Wonderful little essay, sounds as though everyone is having a fantastic vacation. E is obviously a very precocious young lady who will overcome any obstacles. If it were in the cards I’d adopt a half dozen just like her. Will there be any possibility of future medical procedure or implants to provide her with hearing?

    • I wish you could meet her. She is uniquely amazing. All of our children are amazing and have brought as much joy to our lives, but there something about this child’s start in life, her tenacity, her spirit that is a pleasure to get to witness.

      She is bilaterally implanted and can hear quiet well. Actually she can hear perfectly. Her vocabulary and word choices are remarkable, but in large settings with a lot of background noise she still benefits from sign support.

  7. A Girl,

    Staycations are wonderful because when your done sight seeing, you can go home and just relax in the comfort of your own home.

    I love the fact that your children enjoyed the museum, most kids would be board in the first 5 minutes.

    I’m the same way when it comes to playing any kinds of Wii or Playstation games.

    Enjoy your Spring break with your sweet children.

  8. Wonderful way to spend a home vacation, and kudos to the older gentleman for his part in bringing it to life for a little one!

  9. Outside of being able to play asteroids in college I totally stink at video games. Last time I played was one of the Lego ones, Raiders of the lost ark. 8 year old beat me. Eventually we just chased each other around the landscape occasionally jumping on the camels to ride away. I called my camel “my trusty stead” and the rest of the day the little one was saying “I’m going to jump on my trusty STEVE”.

    It wounds like a wonderful day. You’re lucky to have those.

  10. Great day, and good on the gent for talking directly to her! 🙂 I still need to get a day and come see the rest of that museum!

  11. Man, you could have stopped typing after the Marine Corps Museum, and my day would still have been made just reading that portion!!! (and it was a tough day) Any chance TSM can get E involved with the Marines, volunteer or something like that? Bringing little care-packages to Marines in the hospital on holidays? Deafness may prevent her from joining up (then again…maybe not! Ask around!), but she can still help out in lots of different ways.

    Oh, and email me if she’s interested in reading more about the Marines, I’ve got a modest collection of WW2 histories, and there are a LOT of Pacific battlegrounds covered, the vast majority of which were Marine battles. I’d be more than willing to loan them to her!

    Heh. Our kiddo loves going to those peanut-shells-on-the-floor restaurants. She’ll ignore her food just to crack open another peanut and toss the shell. The hard part is convincing her that the handful she snuck out with her afterwards are NOT authorized to be chucked on the floor of the truck on the way home…

  12. What a great trip. Lu and I love those short fun little excursions.

    Your kids are keepers all. What a lucky Mom to be so blessed!

  13. All I can say is WOW!!! It really makes my heart feel good that there are kids like yours that have their feet on the ground and there head on their shoulders. In today’s world there seem to be so many that all they understand or care about is entertainment. You and yours should be very proud to have children like you have. All the very Best,

    Curt S

  14. That sounds like a pretty awesome day.

    Don’t you dare blog about going shooting on your vacation.

    Stuck down here in Birmingham. No shooting for me until I can find us a place to live.

  15. AGirl
    Sounds like you are having fun with you family. I go on my vacation next Thursday. I am looking forward to see my family after nine years. Lots of love to you and yours.

  16. Sounds like a great day,but then it seems like you always have great days.You and the Marine are good solid parents (and good Americans) and that’s why you have good kids-you are raising them to be good kids.Congrats.

  17. You already know I love your kids; but the line, “I am sorry mommy if your hands are tired, but could you please sign for me?” caused me to get so damn teary eyed that I had to stop reading for a minute. You are so blessed.
    And the question about whether the Chinese were bad people – that was a deep question. Please say, for me, that there are good people and bad people of every race and color, and that Chinese kids can be so proud of their ancient and honorable heritage. One of my heroes, the venerable Cardinal Kung was Chinese, imprisoned for being a priest, and held in prison for decades, never with a complaint, but only in praying for his captors.
    Thank you for sharing these joyous moments with us; it lifts the heart to read of these tender times of family.

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