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What do you do on a Sunday afternoon when you don’t feel like hitting up the playground? We tossed around ideas, calling some friends (who ended up being busy) and then it hit me, why not head into the city? We’re not far away and the kids are old enough to walk around and really enjoy things. And so we set off for the Public Gardens for a ride on the Swan Boats.

The drive into Boston itself is always an adventure, as anyone who has driven in Boston knows! We pointed out all the sights (the Pru, the Hancock, the Schrafft candy factory, the Zakim bridge) before parking right in a parking lot under the Boston Common. Even parking garages inspire awe when you are 4 and 5 🙂 We wandered around the common for a while, checked out the frog pond and the tadpole playground before heading over to the Public Garden. Of course we had to get a treat (some lemonade) from a street vendor – it gets pretty warm in town!

Once we entered the Public Garden we strategically traveresed the edges looking for the ducks from Make Way for Ducklings. We eventually found them and the kids tried out all the ducklings for size. This was an excellent photo opportunity but Molly has developed a new camera face – let’s hope this stage doesn’t last very long.

After that we headed over to the swan boats — while waiting in line Matt mentioned that he felt drops of rain. Clouds had gathered overhead but I didn’t think much of it because the weather had been beautiful up until then. Our timing was perfect because we were the very last people left onto the boats — they stopped all other trips after ours. We had a pleasant drift around the pond — if you’ve ever taken a swan boat you would know how gentle a ride it is! Molly snapped a few photos – she was intrigued with the way the boats worked.

As soon as we got off the boats the rain started for real. Then the thunder started. We had promised ice-cream and we both thought we remembered an ice-cream place on Newbury Street so off we all went. It was much further than we thought but eventually we found a Ben & Jerry’s. The return trip was very, very wet even though we stopped off in Filene’s Basement to buy umbrellas. Matt decided that he would make a run for it and bring the car back to us — fortunately as it turns out because he had to wade through some flood water to get to it!

A few years ago this trip would have probably been a disaster but the kids and I had so much fun while we were waiting – acting goofy, watching the people go by wearing plastic bags and carrying their shoes. All in all, today was a very good day. And I’m sure this will all be coming soon to a layout near you 🙂