So this was the weekend Gus’s name was drawn to take home Zirk, the Cosmic Chicken.
Gus wasted no time in introducing Zirk to the finer things in life, including Pokemon and taekwondo.
But of course, as fate would have it, it was also the weekend we had scheduled for chicken butchering. I was amused by this. Jackie was not. Zirk was scarred.
Well, after putting Zirk through that, we needed to do something fun to mark his visit. So, it was decided to take the kids to the second best city in Kansas: Independence! While living in Ark City, Jackie and I had gone with wee little Jude and Gus. It was time to show them all the things we loved about this town. We started with a quick pilgrimage to St. Andrew’s parish, and then on the park, which features some outstanding playground equipment. (We have become quite the playground connoisseurs lately) There is also a free zoo, home to Monkey Island!!! Best of all, Fr. Chad drove from Coffeyville to meet us there. On the drive home, all the kids agreed that seeing Fr. Chad was the best part of the day, which is pretty impressive when you remember that they also saw MONKEY. ISLAND. (!!!)
When I was a kid, my dad, and Uncle Dave, and Uncle Rick took all of us cousins to Elk River Hiking Trail for a day. I have great memories of this trail-the closest thing to Colorado that Kansas has. When Jackie and I visited 8 years ago, it wasn’t how I remembered it at. all. Luckily, Fr. Chad had gone scouting and located the less-known trail entrance that our dads had brought us to as kids. It was even better than I remembered it. Gorgeous October day. If you’ve read this blog at all, you know how few things in life make me happier than being able to pass on experiences of joy and beauty from one generation to the next.
My favorite memories of the weekend:
5. Jude and Gus’ laughs of wonder and disbelief zooming down the huge slide at the park.
4. Building a bridge with Fr. Chad so we could cross the stream. A recent flood had dislodged the fallen tree people previously used. But now they will use our bridge.
3. The kids were amazing helpers on Saturday, helping us make record time. In hour 2: We butchered 33 or 36-I lost track during the last few minutes. Xavier, the fearless chicken catcher, deserves to be singled out.
2. Zelie scouting out her own path that led us to a cool outlook.
1. Fr. Chad giving us a blessing on the trail.