For the last four years, the first Friday of December has marked a day off of school (at least for the mid school) and has been the day we've therefore chosen to drive up to Portland for a day of ice skating. Usually, it's marked the kick off of our Countdown Calendar - but thanks to the day off landing on November 30th this year, the kids got an early kick-off. (An extra day of fun, you bet!).
We met up with Michele at about the halfway point in Salem, and all of the kids donned their snow/Santa hats to have the perfect attire for our skating day.
While this mall isn't my favorite, it is one of the very few to still have an ice skating rink in the state (maybe the only one) - and even though we have an ice skating rink now in Eugene, it's just not the same atmosphere as being in the festive locale of a large mall.
On to the obligatory snapshots...
I think Nati was the first one to find herself dangling from the wall - and then the other kids followed suit.
The boys took off a little early to do some Christmas shopping, so it left us with just the girls and perhaps two other sets of people....we virtually had the ice to ourselves. We got pretty goofy and had some fun. Actually, the whole time on the ice was just about serendipitous with the Christmas carols on the loudspeaker and both kids at a point where they could skate with me vs. me dragging them or holding them up. (They are both pretty good out there now!).
Following ice skating, we went to the upstairs food court. Of course, Brayden would choose the most important eatery - but I sucked into saying "yes" but I couldn't resist with the charm of that smile and the 50's diner experience.
Following some food time, the girls went their own way (for "secret" shopping), the boys went back to their shopping, and Michele and I spend a great deal of time at Ross. (You never know what you'll find there!).
It was an outstanding day - though a long drive home thanks to heavy rain and an accident on the freeway. The kids and I spent the night at Michele's before heading home early for Mikayla's volleyball games on Saturday. Special times - I can't even let myself ponder the possibilities of just how few years are left with these "skipping school skating adventures"....