First thing this morning we gathered up the younguns and headed out. We had a big day planned.
We started at Lee's. After all, all roads do lead to Lee's Coffee and Tea. Once we tanked up on fruit, a muffin, and tea, we walked over to Lauren Roger's Museum of Art. They currently have an exhibit of art inspired by space exploration. Joseph and I have seen it several times, and thought it was time that the kids got a peek. They really enjoyed it. Turns out, there are two interesting aspects of art for them right now: the size (bigger = better) or sculpture (if you can touch it, it makes it better). There were some really big paintings and some cool sculpture pieces, so they were not disappointed.
We then hit the road to Hattiesburg to visit one of my favorite spots, Shady Acres. It's a roadside stand on Hwy. 49 just north of Hattiesburg. We had good southern fried foods and then picked out some flowers to plant in the garden. Of course, before we left, we had to grab some pralines and divinity. Stopping at Shady Acres without a decadent treat is like going to Paris and shunning the Eiffel Tower.
We then did a drive-by of Pep's Point Water Park. I haven't been there since I was a teenager. Everything looked spiffed up and ready for summer. The kids went crazy when they saw the water slides. Let's just say, there is going to be a trip to Pep's Point in our near future.
The Hattiesburg Zoo was next on the agenda. We thought today was Zoo Blues because of a sign we had seen yesterday. Apparently, it wasn't. However, we had a great time. We arrived just as a rain shower came through. Evy thought it was most definetely the end of the world. But, as soon as the rain passed, we entered the zoo to a cool and breezy good time.
Some of our favorite attractions today were the bullfrogs in the gator pond, the tadpoles in the garden pond by the train depot, and the snake sunning on the walkway. They were new attractions to us, so they really stole the show.
Next, we jaunted over to Calico Mall. If you have never been, it's a cool little flea market in downtown Hattiesburg. It is within sight of Sack's and the train depot. I found a nifty neat little cigar box and a tiny leather purse that I want to put my journaling stuff in. Right now, I carry an entire backpack of journaling stuff with me everywhere I go. It is embarrassing. So, I will be trimming down the supplies to fit in this little leather treasure.
I also found this awesome-to-the-max printer's cabinet. All the drawers are there and work great. I think it only needs a little paint to be A-1. It was priced well out of my price range, but I may make them an offer.
While I was plundering through other people's junk, Joseph took the kids over to the train depot. They found lots of fun there. It mainly centered around a fountain.
On the way home, I stopped in C'est Le Vie Bakery. It is hidden in a little strip mall on Hardy Street across from Crescent City Grill (which, by the way, is THE Best Resteraunt in Hattiesburg). The gent at C'est Le Vie makes the most amazing bran muffins. He puts only good-for-you stuff in them and they are the pinnacle of deliciousness. You wouldn't think that an unassuming muffin could muster this level of deliciousness, but, yet, here they are. I bought his last two, and he generously gave me the remaining almond croissant. I have never tried the almond croissant. After today, I still haven't tried it since the entire croissant went into Joseph's gullet. But, he assures me it too was a delicacy.
It was time to be home. But, for a moment, I lost lucidity and decided we would go by Bogue Homa Lake before finishing the last trek to home. The kids had been napping in the van and woke up squealing when they saw we were at the lake. It had been a happy, but long day. Now, they were suffering from the short-nap crazies. As soon as we let them out of the van, they scattered like rabid monkeys.
We knew it was past-time to go home when things went in this direction. (See picture above.)
Still, I tried not to let the day end. We found ourselves driving behind some hot-rodded trucks on trailers. They were headed to the Bogue Homa Mud Bog. Not knowing anything about the mud bog, I followed them down some pig trail into the back woods. Turns out, there is a pay-to-continue spot at the end of that pig trail. Even I knew we were in no shape to enjoy a mud bog, tonight. So, I turned around in the road and took us home. The mud bog will be on our list to do next time.
So, now, I am hoping we can all take a minute to be a family of big lazy lumps for the rest of the evening and maybe even get to bed early. Maybe I am just having another moment where I have temporarily lost lucidity. Or, maybe...just maybe...we'll get the perfect end to a perfect day.