14 June 2013

Of Our Future Mommy

About a month or longer ago, during one of her infamous "I-don't-want-to-leave-wherever-we-are-because-wherever-we're-going-certainly-won't-be-as-much-fun" breakdowns, Micaiah declared, "I'm going to have a new Mommy and a new Daddy who won't let me go home and won't let me go to sleep!" Apparently she meant this as a threat - it really sounded to me like her new parents were sadistic, but whatever helps her sleep at night - or not.

Clearly, when she began to realize New Mommy and New Daddy weren't coming for her on their white horses, she changed tactics. Her new goal is simply making the world a better place for her own off-spring. This includes consoling herself about the fact that Joey did not come out a baby girl by declaring, "When I'm bigger, I will have a baby girl. When I'm a mommy." She is also already begging to buy baby clothes for this future daughter when we pass the racks at Wal-Mart. "Mommy, can we please buy this for my baby?!" "What baby?" "You know, the one I'm going to have when I'm a mommy."

What can I say? She's a planner (and I have no idea where she got that trait - certainly not from her parents who just got finished throwing together plans for celebrating their soon-to-be-three-year-old's birthday party the night before the festivities are to take place).

But more than settling with God just what these beloved children will look like or be named or even planning their wardrobes, she has already begun taking notes about how she will behave as a mother. Primarily by not doing what I do.

"My kids won't have to go to bed when I'm a mommy!"*

"When I'm a mommy, I won't give my children squash!" (yes, that's a direct quote, as are all of the above).

My feeling on these ground-breaking methods is, "When you're a mommy, I'll try my best not to judge your parenting choices so long as you stop judging mine."

Respect, that's all I gotta say, girl. Respect.

*I felt it crucial to document these declarations for the day when my grandchildren are sobbing over being sent to bed early for not eating their squash. Not that I'll be rubbing her nose in what she said as a four-year-old. I'm way too mature for that.

07 June 2013

Of a Morning at the Movies

A few years ago I started seeing advertisements on various money-saving blogs for a summer movie series that various theaters across the country do - one children's movie a week, during the day, at a wonderfully reduced rate. Yes, they're old releases, but who doesn't love watching a movie on the big screen? Of course, I've come to realize with small(-ish) town living that the terms "regional" or "select theaters" generally rule us out. And such has been the case since I first learned of this summery movie extravaganza.

Not so this year, my friends. Not so this year.

This year our town joins the ranks, screening various children's favorites for only $4 - sure it's not free as others do, but the price of admission includes popcorn, a drink and fruit snacks. You won't hear any complaining about that from our kids (especially since they're not paying for it).

As soon as I caught wind of the excitement to come, I loaded up my calendar - each and every Thursday morning screening is prominently labeled, so I'll know which days we need to be lining up at the ticket counter.

Yesterday was the first of these much-anticipated days.

I loaded up the kids - a little concerned about how Joey would do, but also recognizing I was going to a movie theater at 10am to watch an animated movie everyone probably already owned on DVD - I doubted a squawky toddler would receive much attention. I knew I'd have my hands full, but it's not like I'm completely clueless at this point when it comes to toting around three children under the age of five.

I've got this.

What I forgot to factor in was toting around three children under the age of five (one on my hip) and three kids' boxes filled with popcorn and soda cups to spring-loaded theater seats not equipped for the meager weight of pre-schoolers and the inability to take bathroom breaks with the above mentioned munchkins and their snacks.

Let's just say, I have quite a few mental notes of how to do it better next time. These include not handing Emmett his popcorn tray until he has figured out how not to get scrunched by the chair, not arriving early so as to cut down on the time needed to hold a 15-month-old's attention (well, and just plain hold him - especially when he's using all his squirmy might to escape to the floor) and not having to share my (aka the baby's) popcorn with older brother (which includes a side-note of making sure his doesn't get spilled) - because when the popcorn is gone, so is that fidgety baby boy.

All things considered, we all had a fairly enjoyable morning. Joey finally resolved himself to the fact that Mommy wasn't letting go (no matter how good the popcorn on the floor looked) and, thumb in his mouth, settled his tiny head on my arm. Emmett learned how to hold his seat in place and made sure to point out to me all the parts that were funny. Micaiah leaned over at one point, to snuggle with Momma, and had a great time laughing when the other kids laughed (even if she didn't always get the joke).

The kids and I agreed, a morning at the movies is definitely not a bad way to pass the summer time.