Rhythm is so critical to young kids and this trip has driven the point home. Actually, it is amazing how resilient my kids are to jet-lag on the trip west. They have had little issue with sleep since arriving in Miami. Part of that may be due to my attempt to keep them on a fairly regular schedule: breakfast, pool, lunch, nap-time, activity, bath (at 7pm latest), dinner, and sleep-time. The one or two times that either nap-time was skipped or the bath/dinner schedule either slipped or was inverted, it took almost an hour more to get them to bed. But the days where this schedule was kept, bath-time passed with little or no tears, dinner was far less of an ordeal, by the end of the second story, each of this kids was fast asleep until the next morning. All of this is, of course, a stress-factor for me, but at the same time has helped me keep my sanity as well. I think that perhaps I overcharged the agenda (once again), but the last few days, I have slowed things down a bit.
Yesterday, I took them to the Brews, Blues and BBQ Festival at the Redlands Fruit and Spice Farm on SW 177th Ave and SW 248 St in the Redlands. It is a beautiful park full of trees and good explanations of all the tropical plants and fruits. The festival itself was nice and usually lasts the entire weekend but had been rained out on the Saturday. We only got to see one group, the Pit Bull Blues Bad, but they were lots of fun. I had to stand in line for over 45 minutes to pay for some bbq ribs and then another 30 minutes for them to finish cooking, so that’s how most of my afternoon was spent. The stand was from M&M BBQ Catering which seemed to be a family owned outfit. While in line, I spoke to the lady behind me who was there with her teenage daughter. She told me that this was going to be the first meat she had eaten in over 9 years since her daughter (6 at the time) had realized that eating meat entailed killing and eating animals. You can rest assured that they left with bbq sauce smeared from cheek-to-smiling cheek. Once the ribs were cooked, the Grill Master Warren Millings (one of the M’s I suppose), individually cut up each rib and I could finally chow down. I offered my 2-year old daughter a small piece of meat, but she reached over me and grabbed the biggest rib in the styrofoam box and vigorously chewed it down to the bone – a real carnivore that one! All said, the afternoon was pleasant and should I be in Miami again when there is an event happening at this Park, I will definitely come again,