December 10, 2017
Chilly Hill Fun
We’re usually busy on the weekends. Because of an unexpected break, we discovered we could go to the bayfront to watch the boats parade by dressed up in Christmas lights.
So, Mom, sisters, cousin, and brother all gathered into the van (we had to go pick one sister up from her event to join us!) and made our way to the free “nights of lights shuttle” parking area. This was my first time using this service, and it was fantastic! We arrived at the bus stop (county health department) about 4:30pm. The girls played “rock, paper, scissors” and softly sang along to the Christmas songs while Lucas announced the passing of every bus, big truck, and string of Christmas lights; usually adding “we on a bus, Mom!” We were at the parking garage drop off & did the short walk to the fort to arrive just before 5pm.
At that moment, although it was Florida chilly (low 60s) the wind chill wasn’t too bad. I kept reminding the girls to put on their jackets (which, like most younglings, they had tried to “forget” both at home and in the van).
Four girls and Lucas rolled down the fort hill (Lucas actually rolled in the flat dirt, much to the entertainment of his older sisters), ran about playing some version of “Tag” with any other child who crossed their path, and periodically bounced to the older girls’ perch on the bayfront wall asking, “are the boats coming yet?”
Kimberly, Jaquline, Jillian, and Anastasia spied a Fire Department boat with red lights and a Police boat with blue lights that appeared to be racing! They each cheered for their favorite color – blue won. But the red one stayed right in front of our spot so Lucas yelled “Hi, red fire boat!” almost every time he glanced that way for the next 20 minutes.
Finally, the boats started to line up. It was nearly 6pm and the temperature was reading low 40s with 30s wind chill! The girls were huddled together like ducklings next to mom while Louis turned into an “emperor penguin” wind barrier.
The boats were beautiful! (I have to get a camera that takes good night pictures! Everything after dark was blurry.) The first was a pirate ship! The cannon from the fort fired three shots! The girls claimed the pirate boat fired back… they were too cold to duck and cover. Then came the gingerbread-cookie boats. Anastasia and Jillian decided they tasted good and began to make chomping noises and say “yummy boat” in deep voices. By the time the neon purple one circled to the far side, the girls were frigid and when Anastasia said, “can we please go to the warm bus?” Lucas added, “bye bye boats!” and we started back.
We also had to get Christina back to CAP before 8pm!
After the fastest .7 mile family walk with Louis timing (aided by a sturdy double stroller), we boarded the warm bus and sang songs while Jillian and Anastasia goofed off and Lucas reminded everyone about each boat he had seen.
We got Christina back in time. Before we got home, only Mom and Rebeccah were still awake. So we will leave you as we snuggle with the sleepies on the couch and start watching “It’s a Wonderful Life” to end our perfect day!
Thanks for reading!
Type at you next time…