Sunday, January 28, 2007

how to cause and cure a migraine

Little Man is nearly five and somehow we have managed to prevent him from visiting Hell On Earth (aka Chuck E. Cheese). He's occasionally seen commercials about HOE/CEC, and now that he's in preschool some of his friends have told him about it. In the past few months he has asked several times if we could go to HOE/CEC for lunch so he can play games. I've always told him no, mostly because my one visit to HOE/CEC many years ago gave me an almost instant headache. I remember the place as being very dark, dingy, loud and dirty. So my motivation to go inside the local HOE/CEC was minimal.

But then we received a couple of birthday invites from some children in Little Man's preschool class. Both of them were for parties at HOE/ on Saturday (today) and one on Monday. Luckily my neighbor's daughter is in the same class so she was also invited, making it easy for us to swap watching the kids at the party. I took Little Man and Blondie to the party today, and my neighbor will take them on Monday.

I had braced myself for a repeat of my last HOE/CEC experience (this time including the fun of running after Monkey Boy, Little Man and Blondie). However, it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. The local HOE/CEC is actually very clean, well lit and has a huge bank of windows to let in lots of natural light. They had all kind of arcade games, including skee ball (remember that?):

remember skee ball?

And of course Monkey Boy loooooved the train/trolley (he probably spent 25 tokens just on this ride):

trolley ride

While Little Man greatly enjoyed this contraption:

bike helicopter

All in all, the experience wasn't as bad I thought it was going to be. Unfortunately after about half an hour I started getting a nasty headache. By the time we left, I had a nice little souvenir: a migraine. ugh

Luckily the boys crashed when we got home and I was able to take a short nap. When the Dearest arrived home from his workout, we decided to head to our favorite Shabu Shabu restaurant for dinner so I wouldn't have to cook.

Shabu Shabu is a lot of fun: they give you a big plate of very thinly sliced meat, another big plate of raw veggies and a pot of hot water. You swish the veggies and meat around in the water to cook them, dip them in ponzu sauce and eat up.

day 27 of 365/photo a day
day 27 of 365

The small men always love Shabu Shabu- even if they don't get to do any swishing themselves. Tonight Little Man was putting pieces of carrot on his chopsticks and "warming" them over the pot like he was roasting marshmallows.

Monkey Boy's favorite part of the meal is the 'ndoodless' or noodles. He's gotten pretty good at slurping them up:

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The Shabu Shabu was good enough to cure my migraine and I'm feeling ever so much better now. :) Off to bed, because tomorrow I'm doing a yarn crawl with the lovely Ms. Chelle. Maybe I'll even take some photos (ya think?).


LLA said...

Glad you are feeling better, and that you at least got a fun dinner out of the day!

Oh - and I LOVE Skeeball. Love it, love it, love it. (I also suck at it, but that doesn't seem to affect how much I love it...)

Mandy said...

My almost 5 year old son was invited to CEC last year for a party. It was icky, but I'm glad we went so now we know to avoid it at all costs. On the other hand, he had a ball and it is always pretty fun to see that much joy your kid's face.

That dinner looks fun and yummy!

Jan said...

We have an awesome alternative to CEC here, called Partyville- basically a converted warehouse with about 15 of those giant blow up slides/obstacle courses. No video games (which is where my kids drive me nuts-more tokens more tokens). Plus it has a nice area for the parents to hang out and watch the small people (and knit ;))Shabu Shabu looks yummy- we are off to PF Chang's today.......