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Trains, Trollies, Art and the Best Big Sister

This morning, the kids and I took a train down town to the New Children’s Museum.  Andrew had to work to help one of his clients migrate their new server (um–what?) so Maria and I packed a back pack, I dug out the Ergo and woke the kids up early.  This was Maria’s first train trip.  Finley wore his conductor hat, and each boy brought a tiny, wooden Thomas.

The train was crowded in the morning, the us four had to cram into two little aisle seats next to people who didn’t seem to be very happy.  That didn’t stop the two boys from pointed out the surfers catching early morning waves as they whizzed by the windows from the second story, the mossy lagoons with egrets  serene in the gray mist and airplanes flying at our same speed and level.  “MAMA!!  MAMA!!  LOOK!” they pointed eagerly across the seats, chirping at the sights as Maria and I praised them.

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Elijah was on my back, and Maria wore all our day’s items in the back pack #TeamWork!  This day could not have happened if it weren’t for Maria, we were such a team.  At first we were sad Daddy couldn’t come, but looking back, I am glad Maria and I had this expereince of travling with the boys together, we work so well together, so insync.   Even–sneak preview, running down the sidewalk, each with a boy in our arms, and barely making the connecting trolly.  We could NOT have been happier when we were sitting in those seats, us four.

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Maria does art every day, but I told her this Museum has art you can play with, she couldn’t wrap her mind around what I could mean by that, since most of her art is done on paper or canvas.  But as we all learned today, art is more than technique on paper.  (Our friends got free tickets for us at the library, who knew!?)

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Rolling out clay


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Swinging makes the music


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Painting a real tractor



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Wobbly fruit in the sink


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They told me they were Max in his sailboat sailing towards the Wild Things


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Working on Back Bends


And Finally, the worlds best big sister, just being herself, always able to gather two little wild things right into whatever she is doing, which is always to help, love, teach or show them something kind.

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It was just after noon and the boys were nearing that done moment after an incredible moring immersed in art.  I check my clock…we had very little time to catch the train at 12:27…the only train before 3PM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  We would still have to catch the trolly, which wasn’t too close.

“Awwww nah!!!”  So, heads up, I am NOT a planner, or detail oriented, but, maybe, “Do the best with what we have,” mentality…?  I think that’s how I would describe myself.  And usually everything turns out better than great, so we’re good 🙂

But anyways, once I looked at my watch I looked at Maria and said, “We have to run.”

She scooped up Elijah, and I scooped up the heavy Finley and we ran.  I was trying to type, “Trolly Station,” into the walking directions of my phone, but I kept typing the darn wrong letters!!  Running with a heavy toddler and one free, bouncy arm just doesn’t mesh.

We cut through some grass, which Finley obviously had strong feelings about, “No graaaasssssss….”

“We can’t miss this train!” I tell Maria, she knows.

A trolly is pulling up, one on each side, which do we pick, I ask a homeless man, “Does this trolly go to the Santa Fe Depot?”

“Um, yes, this one on this side that is leaving right now…” so we squeeze between the closing doors and Maria and I flop onto two little seats, “Oh my gosh!!  This is working!” I tell her, the boys are silent in our arms, ready for naps, Maria and I smile at each other, catching our breathes.

Two stops down we hop transer to the open doors of the train.  It was empty, “Does this train go to Encinitas?” I ask a woman and a man in full glitter.

“Um….like, you mean….going…um…North?”



We had made it!!!  Save three hours of terrible no nap tears.  We even had room to stretch out.  🙂

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Cozy and stuck with mama in the ergo


And we sailed right home, and into naps!  It was amazing.  Ahhh, what would I do without my sweet, incredible preteen?  Without whom, this day would not have been possible.  Such a rockstar!

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She finished her library book on the final trip home (Which also, oh my gosh…if someone were to have told me one year ago….I think I should do a whole post about that later, such a brave little hard work. Such an overcomer!)


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Ok so I’d love to hear, what about you?  Do you brave public transit often with your little ones?  There seems to be an initial learning curve.  What are you up to this weekend?  What kind of museums are the favorite for your kids?  Let me know, I’d love to hear!

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  • Molly August 30, 2014, 5:32 pm

    You are my hero. We don’t have much public transportation around here, so we don’t. I love public transportation, though, so I wish we could. You and Maria are awesome! And those boys are pretty adorable, too.

    • tinyteam September 1, 2014, 11:46 pm

      I think I love it too…mostly, but deep down I think a car suits my two littlest 🙂

  • Katie August 30, 2014, 6:01 pm

    We just got back from Balboa Park. We saw the puppet show at the Marie Hitchcock Theater which your kids would probably get a kick out of. Have you been? It’s very cheap and would be a fun art project to go home and make puppets. Today’s performance was one of Aesops Fables and an African Tale which I think I will be expanding on this week with my son. Then we went to the Natural History Museum to see the pirate exhibit before it leaves in a couple days and watched the Great White Shark 3D movie included in admission. (Not scary for the littles) Went to Le Creperie for lunch since it’s 2 miles away and a fun treat. Yesterday I went with another single mom (and our kids) to Julian, rented a boat and poles and all learned how to fish. (Wheelchair and all) We are going to learn how to cook what we caught for dinner tomorrow!

    • tinyteam September 1, 2014, 11:46 pm

      WHAT!!?!? That all sounds so fun, I feel like I need to branch out now! I am inspired.

  • Lori August 30, 2014, 6:32 pm

    We are visiting the grandkids in Virginia. My husband is making shredded beef burritos for dinner tomorrow. His specialty!

    • tinyteam September 1, 2014, 11:48 pm

      YUM! That sounds delightful! That is my good friend Linda’s favorite dinner as well! I hope everyone loved it!

  • Marie Osborne August 30, 2014, 7:46 pm

    GIRL!! I took my little dude on the train, and he sat down, looked out the window, looked at me, then said, “Just like the car!” And I said, “Yes, you are looking out the window just like you do in the car!” I thought it was a cool moment of realization, but no. He thought for a minute and said, “All done train.” Kinda like, “Whatever mom. I sit and look out the window all the time.” We’ll try it again another time.

    As for museums, I love the San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum in Escondido. It’s pretty small, but a really nice little outing. I might look for a deal on annual passes next year.

    • tinyteam September 1, 2014, 11:49 pm

      I like the small idea, I think I’ll have to check it out! Hah, I think Elijah felt the same way as Will 🙂

  • Audra September 1, 2014, 9:06 am

    We only have one car so Isaac has been on the train many times, even for grocery shopping 🙂 He has also been on the Sprinter, the bus, and BART when we went to San Francisco. He definitely prefers any of those to the car. He hates the car seat.

    • tinyteam September 1, 2014, 11:50 pm

      Umm…..he’s the cutest baby ever. Love his happy face 🙂

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