For the past five years, Fridays typically mean physical therapy in Springfield for Grace. Before she was diagnosed with INAD, we had heard some really great things about Kids at Koke Mill through Memorial Medical Center, and we thought it might help Grace get walking on her own. Although, we would later learn Grace would never walk on her own, we have kept up the weekly sessions with Amy, as we feel like it's still very helpful to Grace in keeping her skills up as long as we could.
So, while our Fridays usually include a trip to see Amy, who has totally become like an extended part of our family, every so often, she's gone, and we get a day to play hooky!
|Waiting in line at Grace Meat+Three, Charley made a new friend.|
This past Friday was just one of those such days. Kyle had been wanting to go and eat at our favorite, Grace Meat+Three. We hadn't been there since the beginning of Christmas, and we really wanted to go back.
|Enjoying our lunch at Grace Meat+Three|
|Flat Gracie enjoyed her time at Grace Meat+Three|
We started making some tentative plans, but after getting several inches of snow the weekend before, we didn't really decide to go until late Thursday evening. But this time, the weather missed us, and we decided it was a great day for an adventure.
Our first stop was the illustrious Grace Meat+Three for lunch, which was delicious as always. I love their fried chicken, so that's usually what I get. Kyle is much more adventurous than me, and got a fried bologna sandwich. I think he tries something different every time we come, and he's never disappointed.
|Fun at the Magic House|
We also got to visit a bit with owner and chef Rick Lewis, who is always so kind to us. He took a long time to talk to Grace toward the end of our meal and thank her for coming on her day off. Though she mostly eats Pediasure, she did get to try some of Kyle's leek soup and some of my mashed potatoes and gravy. We also stopped to take her photo with Flat Gracie by her license plate. The last time we did the Grace license plate fundraiser, we got TEAM GRCE for our two vehicles. After it was displayed on our vehicle, we gave it to Rick, where it graciously hangs on the wall in the restaurant next to a tray signed by Andrew Zimmern.
|This was one of Charley's favorite stations.|
After finishing lunch, and talking ourselves out of dessert, we thought it would be fun to take the girls to the Magic House. Grace had been once before when she was not much older than Charley, and it had been a really great time. So, we thought Charley might think the same, and the afternoon definitely did not disappoint.
|Being silly and having fun.|
I can't even tell you what Charley enjoyed the most because she just ran from thing to thing trying absolutely everything you could do there. She seemed to really enjoy anything you could climb on or climb in, and she even tried to climb into the water table. Even with a smock, she was drenched in the few minutes she played in the water table, but she loved every minute.
I can remember going to the Magic House as a little girl, when it was actually just a much smaller house. But my favorite part was always the electrostatic generator on the top floor where your hair stood straight up. That was one thing I really wanted to do with the girls, and it was a lot of fun too.
|Training hard with some of our favorites!|
Grace liked some of the sensory rooms with different colored lights. One of our favorite things we did that day was an ocean-themed room. Kids had the chance to color an ocean dweller, scan it, and it would appear on the wall. I helped Charley color a jellyfish, and Kyle put Flat Gracie on it when he scanned it, leaving #BeatINAD floating on the wall. It was kind of a neat way to raise more awareness.
|Charley is dancing with Grace.|
|Fun with sounds|
After a couple of hours, Charley was exhausted, and so was her mommy after chasing her around those two hours, and we decided to head home, grateful that the forecasted weather held off at least for the drive home.
|Adventures of Flat Gracie|
Most weeks, our schedule is set, full of therapy appointments, school days and work, but every so often, it's nice to play hooky and have a family adventure together. We can't wait for the next one!