We left from our family Thanksgiving gathering so that we could drive mostly in daylight. Somewhere between my sister-in-law's house and our house, we got the idea to go to the Circle of Lights celebration in downtown Indy after we got home. Originally, we thought we would stop at home and grab some socks and boots before heading downtown. The girls and I had on absolutely no socks....just barefoot in our Tom's! I am not a real stickler on wearing socks when we are just spending our time indoors, but I thought we absolutely had to have them outside in the cold!
By the time we were an hour from home, we realized that it would take way too long to stop at home, then go downtown. We thought about just giving up on the downtown idea and going home, since after all, we hadn't been home in a day and a half! However, something came over us. Maybe it was the Christmas music we were singing along to, or maybe it was the need for an adventure, but we decided that we would brave downtown....socks or no socks!
Hubby and I have not been to the Circle of Lights celebration in years. In fact, our youngest daughter has never even been. We found parking at the very top of an eight story parking garage that was a few blocks from the Circle. Knowing how my children operate, I thought if we searched long enough, we may be able to find some socks in the car somewhere. I was right! I found two socks (not from the same pair) wedged under the backseat. We decided that our youngest could wear the socks. The rest of us would brave the cold!
The crowd was unimaginable. When Indy hosted the Superbowl, it was crowded, but not like this. It was wall to wall people leading up to the main stage on the Circle. We plowed ahead, determined to get as close as possible. I can't say I have ever brought my children into a crowd like this. The great thing about the crowd was that everyone was in a great mood! I love being in crowds where everyone is caught up in holiday spirit! We squeezed our way to a side alley and took the long way to the other side of the Circle, not by the main stage.
Avery started to get teary because we weren't close. I told her that we absolutely could not move any closer. There were people surrounding us on all sides! She said in her determined little voice, "But mom....this is an adventure. Follow me. WE have to get closer." She took off with me in tow. We followed her! Thank goodness we did! Our little brave adventurer pushed her way (and ours) all the way to the side of the stage where we had a great view!
Despite the frozen feet, we had a wonderful time. We loved the live Christmas music and were surprised by the fake snow that showered the people on the Circle! Santa came and there was a countdown to the lighting of the tree. Then there was a huge fireworks display!! We snapped some pictures on our phones, but they aren't that great. Here are some snapshots of our adventure!
Spontaneity is a wonderful thing! Sometimes I think parents get so up tight that they lose their sense of what it means to cultivate childhood wonder! I know some parents would have been "responsible" and gone home, instead of going around downtown in freezing temps with no socks. We just decided we aren't those kind of parents! We only get one shot at this with these kids of ours. We have to make it memorable. Now we have a special memory of our cold footed surprise trip to a very crowded downtown! Afterward we went to Starbucks and got some chocolatey drinks and got home late. It's okay to stop and smell the roses sometimes....or in our case, feel the cold pavement! The look of wonder in the girls' eyes when they saw the fake snow made it all worthwhile.
This is what memories are made of! It's the small moments. The snapshots of our life that we don't necessarily plan.
Now I am in that holiday spirit!!