Monday, May 19, 2008

The drive-in with six kids.

Last night dh and I took the whole gang to see Prince Caspian at the drive-in theater. There are many, many others reviewing the movie, so if you're looking for a review I'll point you to Plugged In.

Going to the movies with six children is a potential financial disaster. Ticket prices of $8 for adults and $5 for kids are the norm, so we would be looking at over $40 just to get in the door. And then we can't watch a movie without snacks, and with the exhorbitant prices at the theater we could easily lay out another $25 or so, just for drinks and popcorn.

We just can't justify spending that kind of money for an afternoon at the movies. But the experience of going out for a movie with the kids isn't one we want to miss, and waiting the months for the dvd to be released can be torture for short people anxious for the next installment of The Chronicles of Narnia.

When we moved to the Salt Lake area, we were thrilled to find a drive-in theater within easy driving distance. During the summer we will often go two or three times a month, and we always have a great time. (Well, there was that one time that dh and I saw Blades of Glory, but that was our fault for not looking at any reviews.)

Last night was second drive-in movie of the year, and it was warm enough to keep the car open and sit outside.

Our theater-going experience yesterday started at home, where I put together snack mixes for the kids of dried apple rings, pretzels, goldfish crackers, animal crackers, both chocolate and yogurt covered raisins. Dh and I had our own snacks, with some nuts, beef jerky, and string cheese for him and a variation of the kids' snack mix for me. A half gallon jug of iced tea, water bottles, and a stop at the convenience store to pick up cash for the theater entrance and a Diet Dr. Pepper for me, and we were on our way.

Once at the theater, dh swings into action. The van is parked backwards with the hatch opened, and the rear seat cleared of car seats and small children while he turns it around. The three bigs sit on the bench seat, while the two little guys sit in their car seats on the floor of the cargo area. Pillows, blankets, and stuffed animals brought from home are distributed, along with the snacks and water bottles. Dh and I sit in our folding chairs outside the van, and the baby rocks in his car on the ground in between us--until he wants his snack, too.

We had a great time. I think we'll probably be at the drive-in again this weekend--Indiana Jones is coming out!

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