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What to do with this middle-of-the-week school holiday: Veterans Day

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Don't forget to thank your veterans today. Hays County veterans join in the parade last year by riding in a float. RALPH BARRERA/ AMERICAN-STATESMAN
Don't forget to thank your veterans today. Hays County veterans join in the parade last year by riding in a float. RALPH BARRERA/ AMERICAN-STATESMAN

Don’t forget to thank your veterans today. Hays County veterans join in the parade last year by riding in a float.
RALPH BARRERA/ AMERICAN-STATESMAN

This is one of those school holidays that sneaks up on parents. It’s a Wednesday, not a typical Monday.

So, what are you doing with the kids?

Mine are tucked into their beds. As teenagers, they probably won’t wake up until noon. I’ve already got an orthodontist and eye doctor appointment scheduled for my son this afternoon. This holiday actually made my day when I realized I could get these things done and not pull him out of school. For my daughter, it’s trying to get caught up on homework after a week of illness/migraine.

Before they were teenagers, we would bring them to work and play pass the parenting between my husband and I. Other years, one of us took of work.

If you do have to bring your kids to work, here are some suggestions on how to keep them busy:

Never underestimate the power of crayons and paper.

Create a scavenger hunt in the office with the prize being a trip to the vending machine.

Bring a collection of books to read and toys to play with.

Partner with the other parents in your building and have an informal day care. We regularly see groups of kids on these days watching a video or coloring together.

Get your kids involved in your work. Your desk a mess, we’ve got some people who are happy to organize your drawers for you. And yes, the chastising about how messy you are is free. They also love to file things.

Electronics: yes, I know, but sometimes you just have to. Bring or stream a movie, download a new app or two and chalk it up to survival.

Austin-based children's performer Ms. Staci Gray entertains at a room packed with kids and their parents as they try to burst bubbles during story time at Book People. RICARDO B. BRAZZIELL / AMERICAN-STATESMAN

Austin-based children’s performer Ms. Staci Gray entertains at a room packed with kids and their parents as they try to burst bubbles during story time at Book People. RICARDO B. BRAZZIELL / AMERICAN-STATESMAN

If you do get to not be at work today, here are some things to do:

Staci Gray is singing at BookPeople today for story time at 10:30 a.m.

The Thinkery is open today and it’s community night tonight from 4-8 p.m., when admission is by donation.

Take the kids bowling or laser tagging. One underutilized place is the Millennium in East Austin, which has bowling, roller skating and arcade games. It’s open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. today.

Catch a movie. If you haven’t seen “Goosebumps” or “The Peanuts Movie” or “Hotel Transylvania 2,” this is your day to catch up.

Have a pajama and board game day. We recently picked up Twister, Connect Four and Sorry, games we hadn’t played in forever. So much fun.

Teach them what Veteran’s Day is really about. Have a parent or grandparent who served? Call and ask him or her what it was like and thank them. Have a neighbor? Bring them thank-you cookies and see if he or she will talk about it.

Enjoy this day and thank you to everyone who has served.


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