In my excitement last week two weeks ago about Little Troy Park, I forgot that I had been blogging Field Trip Fridays a week behind to give myself time to get the post up in a timely manner. The field trip we took on the last day of school got completely skipped. It was a fun day and a fun celebration of a tough school year so I thought I’d go ahead and post it for this week.

Kenny has lovely memories of going with one of his best friends to an ice cream parlor on the last day of school. His friend’s mom treated them both to banana splits, and they were able to relax, hang out, and enjoy the beginning of summer.

There are very few things we’re sorry our kids are missing out on by being homeschooled, but one thing they have rarely experienced is a definite break in the school year. That “ahhhh” feeling of being done. Since homeschool laws are rather relaxed in Alabama, we often just kept right on going until I felt like we were done. That meant that while we might finish a math book or a spelling curriculum, if we weren’t finished with history we’d keep having history lessons. Now we were certainly more relaxed in the summer, and we didn’t have history lessons or math lessons every day or at the same time of the day, but we never just called a break in lessons for the summer.

This year annual assessments had to be turned in by the end of June so there was a definite end to things. We decided to finish by noon on Friday the 22nd, go to Saratoga Springs to have lunch in the park, and then ice cream at Ben & Jerry’s!

image12506
I LOVE these picnic blankets. I picked up two of them on clearance for $5 each at Publix in Montgomery years ago. We use them all the time. We even spread one out in the back of the church room on Sundays for Jesse and Sophia to play on during the service.

Photobucket
It was quite a warm day but we found a nice shady spot.

Photobucket
We grabbed most of the lunch fare at the grocery store in Saratoga Springs. The food was simple but yummy.

image12523
You see that mark on the side of Kenny’s mouth? That’s actually a cherry pit in mid-air. He spit a cherry pit at me for trying to take his picture again!!


We were a little worried when one 3 year old announced her need to use the facilities. Luckily, the guys at the carousel pointed us in the right direction.

image12555

Did I mention the carousel? Can’t skip riding the carousel! It was a much gentler ride than the one at the state museum.

Photobucket
This one wasn’t free but it was only $1 per kid. Parents ride free. 😉

Photobucket
I think Novella enjoyed it the most.

image12536
John Elijah was a little nervous. This was his first time up on one of the horses all by himself.

Photobucket
I rode in a box again with Jesse. Happily, this carousel box didn’t twirl!

Photobucket
This is the only shot of Sophia at the carousel. There are no decent pictures of Abe and Wesley. They went all independent on us and rode on horses on the opposite of the carousel from Mom and Dad. Go figure!

We tried to walk around the beautiful park for a few minutes. It really was lovely.

image12563

We might have enjoyed it more if it hadn’t been so hot. The heat kept reminding us that ice cream was the next stop.

image12571
The kids nearly killed us when we saw a natural spring and decided to stop and take pictures. Happy-Grin We chose NOT to sample the water this time.

Finally, the point of the trip:

Photobucket

Look, it’s Ben and Jerry!

Photobucket

No, wait. There they are:

Photobucket

It was hard to decide what to order! I got a little stressed worrying about everyone ordering something crazy. At first I said no waffle cones but then I changed my mind. It was the last day of school after all!

Photobucket

PhotobucketPhotobucket

Photobucket

Some people (the girls!) really enjoyed their ice cream.

image12635Photobucket

What a relief to have a break from school. And what fun memories of the last day! I hope we can make it a tradition!

I can’t remember any frustrating outtakes from this trip except for a little miscommunication between Kenny and me in Ben and Jerry’s. I started worrying about how much all this ice cream was going to cost and suggested we should all get regular cones and skip the waffle cones. Kenny is the one that thought we could splurge since it was the last day of school. I must have looked pained. He was the first one to order and skipped the cone all together and got his in a cup! Then all the kids started begging for waffle cones and I caved. I didn’t find out until we were outside eating our ice cream that he got his in a cup because he thought he wasn’t allowed to get a cone! I felt terrible. I definitely owe him a waffle cone from Ben and Jerry’s. Hmmm…. Grandma’s coming in a couple of weeks. I wonder if she will be up for a little babysitting? Wink