Thursday, March 18, 2010
The Family Vacation and Non Momish Moments
Warmer weather is here, so that means one thing: we are going to embark on a family trip. I always thought I did a pretty good job at planning these, but at a very informal meeting (right after I come back from BJ's with a fresh arsenal of pizza rolls the kids usually herd around the kitchen island), I discovered there may be some problems with my planning.
Before I begin, let me say that it is very difficult to plan lessons for a long time and not try to weave in some kind of theme when planning trips. I have been accused of making family vacations "like something our English teacher would force us to do" and I've been working on that. I keep forgetting that while I think it's amazing fun to go see Edgar Allan Poe's headstone, the kids are like, "Wait, did he write Twilight Zone?"
So for this year's Easter break, we came up with the idea of getting a Philadelphia City Pass that offers tickets to six attractions. Emma wanted the aquarium, I wanted the zoo, Christopher and hubster wanted the National Constitution Center, Philip wanted the Franklin Museum and everyone wanted the double decker bus tour. For the sixth, we had to choose between the National Science Museum and visiting the Eastern Penetentiary which houses Al Capone's cell. Of course, I picked the museum. They just put in a whole new butterfly wing.
"We knew you would," Christopher said, "because you want us to learn on a vacation."
"There are worse things."
"Nope," Emma said, "there aren't. You also make it so we have no time to relax. It's like every two seconds, we have to go somewhere or watch something."
"What did you want to do?"
Emma rolled her eyes. "Relax in the hotel. Float in the pool. And you're like, 'Philip, show Emma how to do the back stroke.' "
I do remember saying that.
"So we're going to the penetentiary," Christopher said. "It's supposed to be haunted."
I was worried this would be too dark a destination for Emma. She looked right at me. "I definitely would LOVE to see a ghost. That would be the best vacation ever. A very not Momish vacation."
Momish? I make up words, so I guess I can't say anything.
So after a consensus, we are going to visit Al Capone's cell. Here is a picture of it:
I DID find out that the Eastern Penetentiary was the first place that believed in rehabilitating criminals rather than punishing them. It was based on Quaker beliefs that if you isolated prisoners, they would be able to refect on their crimes in the silence. They even put hoods over their heads when taking them out for meals so they didn't interact with other prisoners.
In fact, I found out a lot of facts about the Eastern Penetentiary, including ghost sightings and lots of legends. I did a little research so they might learn something - a very Momish thing to do.