Family · Holidays · Kids · Making Memories

Christmas Lights and Attention Spans

From long before the Christmas season starts, I have these ideas in my head of all the Christmas festivities I want to take Jase to-

  • Zoolight Safari- the Birmingham Zoo does an amazing display of lights, complete with carousel and train rides.
  • Palisades Park- a local park with light displays put on by several sponsors. It’s drive-thru so weather doesn’t matter.
  • Noccalula Falls- the lights displayed here are just beautiful. There’s a covered bridge, petting zoo, an immaculate waterfall, and the best train ride around. Plus, there’s popcorn, hot chocolate, and Santa.
  • Shadrack’s Christmas at the Tracks- a 3 mile light display…that’s $25 a car.

Tonight we chose to go to Palisades Park. It has been raining here all day but we wanted to take Jase to see lights so we chose one we could drive through. Halfway up the mountain from our house –we live in a valley- the fog was so heavy we couldn’t see three feet in front of us. At that point I realized it may be too foggy to see the lights very well… but we carried on.

We get through many miles of fog and rain and make it to Oneonta. From Oneonta we have to go up another mountain to get to the park. We get a few miles up this mountain and realize we forgot to get cash from the bank to give our donation.

So back down the mountain we go. 

We go get cash, then have to stop at a gas station to break the bill.

And back up the mountain we go. 

At the top of the mountain where the park is, it got so foggy again that we couldn’t see the pull-off at the entrance where we would typically pull over to get Jase into the front of the vehicle. We pull over after we drive into the park and get Jase up front so he’s got the best view.

For the first two minutes or so, he was fascinated- if you even want to call it that. He let out a “wooowww!!” a few times and that was that. He became much more interested in playing with the vents and the gear shifter.

He sat with Eric the last half of our drive. He drove the truck and played with the vents and gear shifter some more. Sounds exciting right?

But I realized something during our 10 minute trip through the light display: a toddler’s attention span is so short. I knew that already, but this made it ever so apparent.

I’m all about making memories for us all to remember, but couldn’t we have had just as much fun at home watching movies and playing with tractors? Maybe. 

I mean, the highlight of our outing for Jase was the Chipmunks singing on the radio. But his hysterical laughter coming from the backseat made that wet, foggy, and pointless thirty-minute trip completely worth it.

Was is a wasted trip? Nah. 

Should we just have stayed home? Probably. 

Will we go out again next weekend to see more lights? Absolutely. 

I hope y’all had a great weekend! ‘Tis the season!


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