Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Saturday Lunch With the Girls

Every Saturday morning, I wake up, eat breakfast, get the kids ready and head out for what I know will be an awesome day. Not that all my days aren't awesome, Saturdays are extra awesome. What makes Saturdays so amazing? Friends. On Saturdays, I get to hang out with my friends while Carrick is at gymnastics.

He has class from 10-11. While he is in the gym learning how to do backwards rolls and cartwheels, I am out on the patio with Lily and my mama friends. Some of the girls bring both kids, so there are little ones toddling around and playing while we chat and catch up with one another. If we stay inside to watch the class, the younger kids want to join the class with their older brothers and sisters.

After the hour of class is over, I have the best part of my Saturday right around the corner, Open Gym. Open Gym is a two-hour supervised  free-for-all at the gymnastics center. The icing on the cake is that the parents can leave!!! So us moms go out to eat lunch together.

It has become a standing ritual for us mamas to go out to eat lunch during Open Gym. We don't do it every week, but any time there are three or more of us staying for Open Gym, we make a point to go out to lunch. This is where a good chunk of my Fun Dollars has gone lately, and I am totally ok with that. It's not just another dinner that I didn't want to make, or a quick-fix fast-food lunch. It's quality time with ladies that I truly enjoy being with, my friends. It's given me a chance to really embrace where I live and who I know. I feel like part of something. It's a simple thing, eating lunch, but it really means so much to me.

Alas, our time with Gymnastics is coming to a close. The class runs for 8 weeks, and we are approaching week 7 this Saturday. Not only that, but we will be skipping gymnastics to attend the ever-festive St. Patrick's Day Parade in Sedona. So the week after next will be our last time. After that, I don't think I'll sign Carrick up for another session. We'll pursue something else for him to engage in. I might do the occasional drop-in for Open Gym, but our Saturdays will be filling up with other activities. But I digress... back to the Fun part of spending Fun Dollars.

This last Saturday, the moms headed up the hill to the Ghost Town-turned tourist/artist community of Jerome. If you haven't had the pleasure of experiencing Jerome, think of a typical wild west town, then perch it on a hill a mile above sea level. Add in the narrow streets of a European sea port, and you've got Jerome. For lunch, we ate at the restaurant where I used to work, Grapes. Grapes is names for the massive wine list that is the heart of the establishment. A curiously small bistro, Grapes has amazing food and the best views. We can look out on the Verde Valley and even over the ridge to the San Fransisco Peaks in Flagstaff, 60+ miles away. Talk about stimulating the senses, this place has it all; aromas wafting from the kitchen, taste buds tingling with the mojito and stuffed portabella I had for lunch, and incredible sights from the patio.

As a bonus, the patio was completely empty when we sat down. It is fenced in so the two one-year-olds who were along for the feast got to toddle around without bothering anyone. (Even the people that sat down halfway through our lunch thought they were too cute for words, so bothering still wasn't an issue. It can be tough eating out with a one-year-old, not to mention two of them. They feed off each other.)

At the end of our lunch, we raced back down the hill and across Cottonwood to pick up our kids from Open Gym. Yet another fun Saturday with the Girls.

Lunch at Grapes (tip included)- $21.00
Open Gym- $5.00

Balance this pay cycle- $5.00

Happy Spending!

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