Weekend Pacing: Are Two Pumpkin Patches Too Many?

Have you ever noticed that some families do so much fun stuff on the weekends? We are not typically that family. One trip to Uncle Costco’s and a wild excursion to the gym pretty much does us in.

We are old. We are tired.

But then I run into people on Mondays who report their activities: “We went to brunch with the kids, then we built a house with Habitat for Humanity, then the kids took surfing lessons at the Rec Center.”

Well, I spent one too many Mondays trying to dress up a trip to a big box warehouse store to sound like something brag-worthy and faboosh. This weekend, we were going to shoot for the stars and aim for the fences all at once. It’s the perfect season for outings that sound good and feel good.

And that’s how we ended up at two different pumpkin patches this weekend. Each was 45 minutes from our house.

Being someone who generally considers having lunch out with her kids a big deal, I am unused to more elaborate day trips. I made mistakes. I forgot my Purell at the first pumpkin patch’s petting zoo but I didn’t realize that until after my children had gamely petted a baby sheep. I also left Simon’s diaper bag in the car, which was parked some acres away. Rookie mistakes.

By our second journey to the Great Outdoors, I figured out how to layer everyone’s clothing and keep a keen eye on my little wanderers without strapping a leash on them. I learned how to weather the shame of having the Corn Police call out my kids for “inappropriately tossing kernels out of the bin.”

I certainly get the allure of getting out for family adventures. We made great memories, took roughly 800 pictures of our children with various gourds, and have the fixings for a killer pumpkin soup.

But I’m still not sure I’m a two-excursion-per-weekend mom. The naps were shot to hell, our house looks like a Disney crime scene, and I found a dozen corn kernels in Simon’s diaper.

Fundamentally, this is probably another pacing issue. Maybe one pumpkin patch per weekend is enough. I don’t know. I either do nothing or put 170 miles on my car. It’s a wee bit black and white, like most of my thoughts and actions.

And we’ll probably spend the next two weekends recovering from this one. I suspect it will be a while before my kids embrace another outing to a pumpkin patch.

How do you plan your weekends? Can you handle two or more excursions? Do you ever miscalculate your family’s energy level?


24 thoughts on “Weekend Pacing: Are Two Pumpkin Patches Too Many?

  1. We did the 2-pumpkin patch trips last year and we vowed to never do it again. We were all completely wiped out. Great word picture by the way, “Disney crime scene, and I found a dozen corn kernels in diaper.” Hope you catch up on your rest.

  2. Two is two too many (kind of fun to say many times quickly). I need a nap after going to the park and out to lunch. Tomorrow I’ll tell people we went white water rafting, canoeing and balloon racing – maybe I’ll make it a family tradition. Hope lots of down time is in your future …

  3. Weekends. Blech.
    I spend five days a week convincing them to leave the house, convincing them to eat, convincing them to leave playgrounds, convincing other families to play with us. M-F is scheduled from 8am-5pm.
    So I prefer not to do anything on the weekends.
    Problem? My children kill each other if we aren’t scheduled to the hilt.
    So. I prefer one day trip both days of the weekend with many activities woven into the trip.
    One day trip. We find the playground close to the pumpkin patch and do early drive, playground, store, pumpkin patch, restaurant, home. Day is gone, no corn in anyone’s undies.

    Now. Repeat after me: sunscreen and wipes in every pocket you own.
    That’s all you need.

  4. First off, your kids are super duper cute in them patches!! I want to bite your son’s cheeks . . . nom, nom, nom!

    Second, your kids are still little. I finally hit that sweet spot (older rule following son (5.5) less cranky if skip a nap younger one (3.5)). When my stinkers were your kids’ ages, they stayed home with all babysitters or we stayed put in the sanity of my home). It was too stressful otherwise.

    In due time, my dear. Fun with your kiddos is almost around the corner.

  5. I’m with you! We are not the fun weekend people at my house. I just don’t have it in me. Fortunately we’ve always been this way and my kids would die of shock if we attempted more than 0-1 interesting things on a weekend. I see the Facebook posts of the fun weekend families, and I wonder where they get the energy. I will never know. –Lisa

  6. I can’t imagine having two children 3/under and trying to get them organized for outings. Ideas always sound fun to me when I say them out loud. Then the execution is rarely what I thought it would be. All of our family trip plans end up with Lily watching the iphone and me asleep while Chuck is driving or cranky after having pushed to get everyone ( total 3 ) out of the house with all of the 1,000 items we need to leave the house with a kid. It is easier without the diapers for sure and age 5 has a sweet spot for sure where she is more travel ready — i.e., she can close her door herself and put on her own sunscreen. Only sometimes goes in her eyes.

    • I keep hearing about this sweet spot, so I am holding on for it. You’re right–the amount of gear is staggering…worse in the winter. God forbid we forget the special snacks or the super special plastic toy that no one cared about until we pulled out of the driveway. It’s funny, but it also keeps my ass at home. I like the idea of sleeping through some of it. That’s what I did on the way home from pumpkin patch #1. I was the only one who got a great nap.

      Let’s road trip together sometime.

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