Join me as I celebrate my 300th post by blogging everyday for the rest of May! A plan so crazy, it just might work!
This morning, Jason dropped Ava and Nate at school, since I was still in my bathrobe. As the temperature has dropped, it's been harder and harder to take it off in the morning. I figure I'm one step away from a Snuggie, heaven forbid. Grace was feeling clingy this morning, and wouldn't let me leave her sight. As we sat on the couch and watched Roary the Racing Car, I thought I should really do something special with her today. Bless her, Grace usually just tags along with me on errands or to her older siblings' activities. We go to the park often throughout the week, but that's about it. So I decided to take her to the Preschool Storytime at our local library. When Ava was Grace's age, I would go nearly every week, lugging an infant Nate in his car seat and trying to get there in time for her to snag a coveted floor pillow to sit on. But Grace hasn't been to storytime yet. I decided to force myself out of my jammies and make it happen.
The library parking was full, so we parked down the street and walked two blocks to the library. I didn't bring the stroller, cause I plan our outings really, really well. We sat near the front for storytime, but Grace was too uncertain to go sit on the blankets with the other kids. So was it an enriching, mentally stimulating time for her? Well...if you count her trying to take the fire extinguisher off the wall and repeatedly lifting a panel in the floor that covered various electrical outlets...maybe. But the story, the songs, the actions? Yeah, she lasted about ten minutes and then got mad at me when I wouldn't let her keep opening and slamming the panel in the floor while the nice lady read the story. We were outta there.
I let her wander around the children's section. She liked holding the books and staring down the other kids.She wouldn't let me read to her, either. She just held the book and wandered around. Then, hey--this is a good time to poop, don't you think?
Please disperse. There is nothing to see here. I repeat: there is nothing to see here. Kindly return to your library-related recreational activities.
Of course, then I was obliged to pry the book from her hands and take her to the bathroom. Screaming all the way, but also reaching for another fire extinguisher as we rushed by. After that, we returned to the books for awhile, but then I was ready to go. I employed a sure-fire tactic to get her peacefully off the premises. "Gracie," I whispered, "Wanna go get a cupcake?"
"Cupcake!" she cried, dropping the book she'd picked back up. We walked across the street to the mall and I bought a cupcake that I thought I'd halve for us to share. Ha!
I did sneak a bite or two, but she yelled at me for doing so. Like the Masai see themselves as the spiritual owners of all cattle, Grace takes dominion over all cupcakes and related pastries. See the look she's giving me? In your face, Mom!Then, knowing that the sugar rush was approaching like a thunderstorm, I did my best to hustle us out of the mall for the walk back to the car. But as Shakespeare wrote, "The course of taking a toddler anywhere never did run smooth." After climbing on the Bob the Builder tractor, looking at the sushi bar, sitting in the Big Red Car, riding on my shoulders, crossing a busy intersection and walking two blocks, we made it to the car. Sweet Lord, what a relief.
Then, there's just the minor matter of grabbing Grace from the front of the car, where she likes to turn on the hazard lights, the seat warmers, twist the radio dials and lift the armrests, and wrestling her into her car seat.
Now, that wasn't so bad, was it? Not exactly the learning experience I'd hoped for but I guess Grace did learn that fire extinguishers are awesome and that if you disrupt storytime, then poop, then scream about getting changed, you get a cupcake!
I am nailing this, you guys!