Occasionally, my children bust out with lines that make me fall over or just lose my breath completely. I wonder how they come to believe some things, but mostly am struck by the realization that something has gone very awry. Last month, we had one of those times.
The USA Science and Engineering Festival was in town. The festival is huge, and comes every two years. A friend of mine has talked of its awesomeness in the past, but two years ago, we opted to go to Williamsburg instead (while, coincidentally, someone traded homes with us so they could attend the Science Festival).
Helen and I met up with our friends who recommended the festival on Friday afternoon, and even though my friend's son is Helen's absolute best friend - Helen was totally not impressed when I told her our plans. She announced to me "I don't like science. Science is boring." Now possibly, she was just trying to turn the science festival into a playdate, and thought refusal to participate in one would leave to the other. Possibly, she thinks she hates science.
My response: The world cannot work without science. We're going.
Defeated, Helen piled in the car. But when we got there? Oh my was it awesome. I have no photos, because I knew I wasn't going to be able to manage a camera well, and didn't want to interfere with sinking myself into the festival activities. I needed Helen's mind to change about the coolness of science...and it did!
By the end of the festival, Helen was insisting we go back on another day, which we did - with Connor in tow. In our collective 6 hours there, I would guess we did 1/10 of the things that would've been appropriate for Helen's age. Connor had a ball in the aerospace and robot sections of the festival - and I'm sure he would've loved a lot of the things Helen and I did.
Helen's favorite thing about the festival?
She got to make her own lip balm at a booth on pharmacy. She opted to not add peppermint oil into hers, so she complains that it smells terrible. But she loves that stuff!