The Drive In Theater

Monday, June 27, 2011

I have very clear memories from when I was a kid, maybe 3 or 4, of sitting in the back of my parents little brown Hyundai, surrounded by blankets and stuffed animals, dipping my McDonalds chicken nuggets into little plastic squares of bbq sauce, playing with fraggle rock happy meal treasures, and then falling asleep to the sound of whatever movie was playing on the screen behind me.

One time there was a horror movie playing on one of the other screens, and I'm pretty sure I wasn't supposed to be watching it, but- because I was facing backwards (they layed the seats down), and not watching whatever it was that my parents were watching, the only thing to look at was Freddy chasing some girl through the fog, and- yeah I had nightmares forever.

But then we moved away from California, and sadly there were no drive in movie theaters when we got to our new home in Washington. Wait, no- there was one, but it closed down shortly after we moved there. Sad stuff, right? But hey, at least I still had those memories of my happy meal days, hanging out in the back of my parents car.

Can you guess what we did this weekend?!

Abilene has a drive in! We've known about it for years, but the thought of taking the whole family always seemed so overwhelming. Especially when we had our old car, because- that thing was a sardine can. And then we finally got a van (and thank God for that). And then we crashed the van. And then we got another van! But then- theres never really anything that we want to see, playing at the drive in. And if there is, its usually the 2nd of two features, and we don't want to sit through the crappy first one to get to the good second one, so... yeah we just never went.

Then I found out they were playing Cars 2 (the kids will freak), and Pirates 4 (we'll freak), and... what are we waiting for?! Load em up, lets go lets go lets go!

The best part was, that we didn't tell the kids where we were going, until we were waiting in line for our tickets. We told them all day long, that we were going to do something super duper fun, but kept our mouths shut as to what it was.

And that was partially because Christopher was on call for work, and we weren't entirely sure that it would happen. In case he would have had to go in, our super duper fun place, would have been the boring ol' park.

But we finally got to go! And we were there! And it was awesome!

Evelyn loves being outside, so she was perfectly happy sitting in Daddy's lap (in the beginning). Towards the end, all she wanted to do was nurse. And even though she was exhausted, having skipped her afternoon nap, we were in an unfamiliar place, and all she wanted to do was look around and take it all in. Even long after the sun had gone down, and the only thing giving us light was the movie screen and the stars.

I saw a shooting star, I saw a shooting star! Its been years.

The kids chased each other around in the open space in front of our car. Did I forget to mention that this was their first time going to see any move, ever? They were extremely excited, but also- exhausted. The movie didn't start until right around their bedtime, so by the time the previews started playing, both kids were flopping around and begging for beds and binkys.

Some friends of ours had met up with us there, and parked in the big empty space that the kids were previously running in (watching them get in to that parking spot was probably more fun than the movie itself), so we went and sat with them. Elie sat in the back of their SUV, Charlie sat in Christopher's lap, and Evelyn sat in mine (we were in chairs). Occasionally I'd have to get up and walk the baby around, when she started getting loud, but for the most part everyone was happy where they were.

Eleanore fell out of the car. Yep, just... fell out. I felt something hit the back of my head, turned around and didn't see anything, and then a minute later I heard her moan from the ground. There she was, knees all scraped up, just lying in the gravel. Get up, you're missing the movie, clumsy!

Mater was there!

Oh, yep. And me too.

...By the time Cars was over though, we had had enough. We packed up the kids (losing a cell phone and a Lightning along the way ...but we found them), and headed out. There was drama with seatbelts, and tantrums over pineapple, but- the parents took one for the team, we sacrificed watching Pirates for the sake of the babies getting into their comfy cozy beds (and shutting the heck up, haha), and we went home.

So there. We can check "go to the drive in" off of our things-to-do-before-we-leave-Abilene list.

43.go to the drive in.

See? Done.

Next time we go, we'll just need to make sure and bring the kids entire bedsets. It was too fun not to go again.

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