A Wave

We decided to take a little holiday in Minneapolis during the kids’ Spring Break. We’re staying through May 1, to see the May Day Parade, joined by friends from Chicago also up for the weekend.

We drove up all day yesterday, first listening to an audiobook of Dr Seuss stories, then to the beginning of Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book. The kids loved it each time he read “Miss Lupescu,” except for Liam who insisted that I am a much prettier Miss Lupescu than the one described by Neil. 😉

Today we explored the Mall of America (MOA). Truth be told, I don’t like shopping malls (especially indoor malls), but it was a rainy, cold day in Minneapolis, and the MOA has an aquarium. So I was convinced (or outvoted?)

After a little shopping, some cool marine life, giant Lego creations, tasty gelato, chopstick adventures, and more rides than we’ve ridden in the last year, we took the tuckered out kids back to the hotel and tucked them in.

I’m trying to catch up with email and a bit of writing, and tomorrow we hope for a sunny day to explore more of this lovely city.

A Good Story Can…

pass time,
open doors,
shift paradigms,
introduce unforgettable characters,
temporarily chase away stress and sadness,
hold the imaginations of three small children during a long car ride to and from school.

For the last two weeks, mornings have been a bit brutal—waking the kids at 6 to leave at 7 and arrive sometime before 8 (when school begins). It’s a 45-minute commute to school from the apartment (as we count down to the closing on our new house).

Our family grew accustomed to long walks and stroller rides during our time in Frankfurt’s Westend (when we opted not to have a car). However the kids are not used to long car rides. Long plane rides? Yes. Car rides? No.

We usually do a lot of singing, seat-dancing, and I-spying to pass the time in the car. In preparation for school, however, I decided to buy a few children’s audiobooks for the 30-45 minute drive.

While we have been reading to the kids since they were tiny (we’re currently reading Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden), I wasn’t sure how the audiobooks would be received.

They were a hit!

We began with a set of Dr. Seuss stories, and we’re now nearly finished with E.B. White’s Charlotte’s Web. This version has White reading his book, and although I’ve read Charlotte’s Web countless times, I think I’m enjoying the audiobook as much as the kids (especially my oldest).

I am surprised at how difficult it is to track down kids’ audiobooks. Does anyone else listen to kids’ books on cd?

We have a few more weeks until we close and move in to the new house. Any audiobook suggestions?