I don’t know how many times Dallas and I have planned what we thought would be a fun outing somewhere for the kids only to have them sulk and whine and complain the entire time leaving us wondering why we ever try to take them out in public.
And then there are times we plan activities that we are pretty sure are a bad idea but decide to follow through anyway just for the sake of getting out of the house, giving our kids new experiences, and creating memories together as a family.
Last night we decided to go to BYU’s Museum of Art. We knew we were likely setting ourselves up for failure by going there, but we were bored and needed something to do before bedtime.
In the car on the way, Dallas and I prepared the girls. We told them we’d be looking at lots of pictures on the walls and that we needed to be quiet, not run, not touch the paintings, and stay close together.
Brooke had a list of questions for us such as, “But are there things for kids to play with at the museum?”
“But can we paint pictures at the museum?”
“But is there a slide at the museum?”
I could tell she was weighing all the facts in her mind and had drawn the conclusion that the museum had nothing of value to offer her.
We arrived and after a little adventure of trying to find an open bathroom with a changing table to change Spencer’s diaper, we were off. Brooke and Caroline held onto my hands while Dallas pushed Spencer in the stroller. He sat wide-eyed taking everything in. Brooke led us through the museum at a quick clip. She kept us on the move constantly saying, “We need to find the pictures!” yet never allowing us to pause long enough to actually look at the art.
Despite the rapid pace, the girls stayed right by me. They never ran. They never yelled. They never tried to touch the art. They were perfect.
We visited the gift shop where the girls found toys and books to look at and Spencer erupted in loud baby chuckles when Dallas threw a ball that changed colors in the air.
It was a perfect evening. I’m glad we made the effort to go do something different and give our children a little bit of culture…though apparently you can lead a child to art, but you can’t make her look because as we got in the car Brooke had one more question for us:
“But, wait! Where were all the pictures? We didn’t see them!”
Oh well. I’m still calling the night a success.