I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!

Today started out like every other day this week. But then…we did something different! Adeline checked the weather, saw that it was supposed to be nice and made the decision that we all needed to get out of the house and do something. Especially Bastien, he needed to burn off a lot of energy. So we went to the Parc de Chevetogne – a park that is about 50 minutes away from us and is quite large with many things to do including a huge play ground for kids, a pool, and a mini-farm. No surprise that we went to the play ground and the mini-farm. Since it was a school day there was no one there. Not until we found an area that was specifically for kids 7 and under. There Bastien found boat-like structures and he was all about the pirates. Even at the mini-farm he kept wanting to go back to his ‘pirate boat’. Of course we couldn’t because it was late, out-of-the-way, and we had to go. This park really is huge. I was supposed to navigate, but I failed big time. There was numbers  all over the map, but they were just there to correspond to a list of places. And it was hard to tell distance based on the map…at least for me it was.

Upon arriving at the parking area for the play ground we had to walk up a large hill. Large enough that the path was basically switch backs like if you were driving up a mountain. Adeline did it with the stroller. It was not easy. When we got there (this was the big kid area) right away we found slides. Then we found an area with an airplane shaped structure which Bastien wanted to play on all the time (even though we wanted to go explore the other areas). We went to the airplane area 3 different times. I’m not sure how long we were there before Adeline found the little kid area on the map.  In this area there were a couple (based on their age and the age of the child I’m going to guess Grandparents ;)) with a little boy – I don’t know exactly how old – I would guess somewhere between 1.5/2 years. We played there for a while and as there were cannon type plastic thingies on all the structures Bastien and I each went to a different one and pretended to have a battle. He won and I died.

We ended up leaving at the same time as the others and here’s where it get’s too cute. I’ve mentioned before that Sylvain now knows how to wave and clap and that he does both at random. He’s also been learning well how to wave when someone is saying hello/goodbye, etc. As we were walking toward the stroller (as were the trio) we said goodbye to each other; what does Sylvain do? He starts waving! No prompting except for goodbye. It was so adorable because he did it right away. Sometimes it depends on what mood he’s in, but this time he waved goodbye as if they were old friends.

On to the mini-farm! We found a place to sit down and eat our sandwiches before looking at the animals. They had rabbits, roosters, chickens, and these birds that look like the cousins of turkeys but I don’t know what they’re called (in French or English). They also had a type of pig…again, I don’t remember what it’s called in French to translate it, but I don’t think we have that type of pic in Canada. At least I don’t think I’ve ever seen one. We also spent some with a mini-Shetland pony. On one side of the paved path (where we saw the pony) there were a bunch of trees. The leaves have already started turning and falling, so pretty. I’m guessing that at least one was a chestnut tree (assuming I’m right on the fallen brown things being chestnuts :P). The lane was covered in chestnuts, leaves, and some other thing that I think was a nut, but I don’t know for sure. Seeing the chestnuts reminded me of home. Maybe that’s a little random. More specifically, it reminded me of Roth family get-togethers, particularly Thanksgiving and Christmas. I’m not sure what they’re technically called, I’m pretty sure we just call them chestnuts, but in the Roth family we make these…finger desserts that look like chestnuts. They are peanut butter balls dipped in chocolate leaving only the very top uncovered. So amazing. I’d rather eat one of those than a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup any day!

Moving on. After the first pony we went down to another field with little goats. I don’t know if they were actually miniature goats or not (I’ve seen pics of mini’s and these were bigger than those). Maybe they were just babies, I don’t know, but they were small and they were adorable and they came right up to us. There was another pony as well, but he wasn’t as friendly. He kept snorting and neighing at us. And Bastien kept asking him why he was making those noises. Eventually we started walking back to the car. Or we thought we did. Periodically theses vans from the park would drive passed us (at this point we were on the main ‘road’) and we stopped one to check. We were going in the wrong direction. So we headed back and got on the right path. After a while Bastien asked if I would carry him. It makes sense. We were out and about for a few hours and he didn’t really sit and eat lunch so he was pretty much on his feet the entire time. I carried him piggy-back for a little when Adeline asked if he wanted to switch with Sylvain and go in the stroller. At first he said no, but changed his mind after less than a minute. So we switched. I carried Sylvain a few different ways before finally putting him on my shoulders. I think he liked that.

Instead of going right home we went to the city of Durbuy. This lovely little place as the honour of the being called ‘The Smallest City in the World’. It’s very touristy with places that organize kayaking trips, so many restaurants and a bunch of other things. We didn’t stay for that long, just about an hour or so, but the main attraction was stopping for ice cream. We went to a restaurant that specializes in ice cream, crêpes and the like. Adeline took Sylvain out of the stroller and put him in a chair. He then proceeded to stand up in said chair, turn around, and start waving at the elderly couple behind him. It was even cuter than earlier today because I don’t think he had any prompting he just did it on his own. I don’t know why, but Sylvain waving at you is one of the most precious things I’ve ever seen. Bastien got a special clown bowl for his chocolate (and vanilla) ice cream. I eventually chose Chocolate Dream (Rêve de Chocolate) which consisted of chocolate and vanilla ice cream, chocolate sauce, and chocolate liqueur. Topped with whip cream this was quite the tasty sundae. Adeline had a chocolate milkshake and a Durbuy beer.

I managed to remember I had brought Freddy with me and he was brought out for pictures. While I was trying to take a picture of Bastien coming out of the restaurant – we ate outside – after paying (he did it all by himself!), Sylvain managed to get close enough to the bottle of water to knock it over. Which in turn knocked over one of the glasses which proceeded to break. Ouch >_<. No one was actually hurt, but still. Not fun. After the ice cream we went to a butcher shop and then took an alternate route back to the car. It was very scenic – all light grey stone – uniform yet unique with cobblestone streets and plenty of  interesting alleys. Not small, squishy, scary alleys, just small streets. We stopped at this waffle stand. We weren’t exactly hankering after a waffle at that moment, but something caught our (well, Adeline’s) attention; waffles on sticks. Waffle suckers. We each had to get one just because they were on sticks and looked like those crystallized candy sticks you can get in a bunch of different flavours. Except bigger. On the outside they looked like a Liège waffle – but inside there were no sugar clumps! At least not in mine.

Of course on the journey home we encouraged Bastien to sleep. It was almost an hour so he would have been able to get a bit of a nap in. He fell asleep with about 15 minutes to go. Silly boy. After arriving back at the house it was the usual routine. And like usual I am now here recalling my day for all of you.

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6 Comments

  1. Ditto on Laffe’s comment about having such a adventure-packed day. You seem to be blessed with a family that makes the most of their days and includes you for them. You’re getting the experience of a lifetime!

    Any story with animals and ice cream is sure to please! 😉

    Reply
    • I’m very blessed. Soon things should go back to normal with school and babysitter and I’ll be able to get out a little more during the day. Although I’ll have to plan really well because I have to be back sooner now to pick Bastien up!

      Reply
  2. That was years ago and it was my first time being an aunt … so I didn’t really know how to say “no.” Oh and she made me carry her too most of the time until her teacher told me that I should let her walk more. OMG, I’ve learned sooooo much since then … the little girl is 15 now and she texts like crazy… but she’s still the love of my life.

    Reply
    • It’s hard when it’s your first real ‘exposure’ to young children. I’ve been babysitting since I was old enough to, but that doesn’t mean I know that much! That’s awesome that you two have a great relationship!!

      Reply
  3. My gosh you had a big day! Everything sounds so wonderful and I have to hand it to you for going to that mini-farm and actually liking it. Years ago, I once took my niece to a petting zoo (my sis tricked me into taking her (4 at the time) to the field trip). Well, let me just say that I’m not about the animals up close and personal. The little “princess” made me pet all the animals because she didn’t want to get her hands dirty and I of course did what she told me to do (hey, who is the adult anyway?). Then we got to the GOATS. Have you ever seen a goat do #2? OMG, it looked like a jawbreaker candy machine had gone haywire. They crap little black pellets. I was amazed and gross at the same time. After that excursion I was ready for a VACATION!

    You are an absolutely wonderful carer of these children …

    Reply
    • Haha, I guess I should have specified that it’s not exactly a petting zoo. Maybe if you wanted to try you could, but the birds/rabbits are all in caged dome enclosures and the hooved variety are in fields surrounded by electric fencing….could be tricky. I don’t ever recall being to a petting zoo. I’m sorry you had to do that. I would like to think that I would say ‘pet them yourself. If I don’t want to I’m not going to’, but who knows. No, I haven’t seen a goat ‘in action’, lol. I have to say though, goats can be super cute. Watch some YouTube videos of miniature goats (there’s a lot). They’re insane and adorable. I wouldn’t actually want one as a pet, but the’re cute all the same.

      And thank you. Then again, I only type the good stuff here, lol ;). We all have our not so proud moments, but I’m learning a lot.

      Reply

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