Tuesday, June 24, 2014

..a birthday and an anniversary..

Ten years.

 That is how old this boy is. An entire decade spent keeping us on our toes. This child, being our firstborn, came with no instructions, and has thrived despite many parental missteps.  All new parents think this, I am certain. 

 He is, without a doubt, an embodiment of what his name means -- laughter I loved his name from the get-go, before I ever laid eyes on him. Isaac.

On his birthday, we were making a trip north to LaCrosse, Wisconsin. Neither Rich nor myself had thought much about what we would do -- this day he hit the double digits. We wanted to make it special, but not the kind of special that breaks the bank. All Isaac wanted for his birthday was an Xbox....something neither of us were willing to give.

We came upon a perfect compromise, however, in the form of Shenanigan's. Thank goodness for friend recommendations and happy hour. For one full hour, all three of our babes enjoyed a semi-deserted warehouse of fun: high ropes course, bouncy house, bumper cars, hamster ball, mini bowling, climbing wall and arcade games galore.

At the end of the hour, they had tickets to redeem for prizes. 2,200 of them. Most of those points allowed Isaac to choose a mini pool table, which was a wonderful present that made him and us happy. Birthday crisis averted.

3 days later came the anniversary. 11 years.

I can happily say that it doesn't feel that long. It only seems long when I start to think about all that has happened in those 11 years. Amazing.

For our anniversary, we did make a point to go out -- Wisconsin style.

We went to a campground bar to listen to a dixieland band, The Basin Street Boys. Rich knew the percussionist -- he was a former student. As crazy as the date sounds, experiencing it in real life was even better. The band was fantastic. I was smitten with the loud, casual nature of a bar riddled with deer antlers, deer heads, and even a black bear. It was Mardi Gras night too, so people were bedecked in purple, yellow, and green, and beads galore. $4 Hurricanes. $8 Shrimp Etoufee. I was completely in awe, and loved every moment of this eleventh year celebration.

Our summer continues, and while our anniversary marks the end of "celebrations" for now,  we still have a lot of summer fun to soak in. It's all good.  Yes, this first Wisconsin summer is very good, indeed.