Tonight, the girls and I took an “adventure” as Charlotte would call it. Poor girl, I got her using the term to pretty much describe any outing or errand. “Charlotte, you want to go on a mailbox adventure?” “Charlotte, we’re going to go on a Lowe’s adventure.” “Mommy, can we go on a Taaaaarrgggeeett adventure tonight?” She’s no dummy – she knows Target comes complete with popcorn and a slushy. It started in the womb ok?! I couldn’t stop eating Target popcorn and slushies when I was pregnant with her, but I maintain the deep desire for Target and all that comes with it is part of a woman’s DNA, so can’t be held responsible.
To be fair, tonight’s adventure truly was something fun and out of the ordinary – winter ice cream. Weeknight, winter ice cream (even more rebellious!). My husband Matt has drum practice on Wednesday nights, so the girls and I ventured out after dinner to appease mommy’s craving while creating childhood memories that appeared to be all about them. Isn’t that how it’s done? It was fun, quality time, and did create a memory – however the reality of a scenario with young children versus how you’d imagine that scenario to actually play out is always a stark contrast. In my mind, Charlotte, Olivia and I would skip together while holding hands into the welcoming doors of Dairy Queen. We’d decisively choose our ice cream, find a seat and have darling conversation while basking in our sweet treat. We’d live on the edge, because it’s a weeknight and close to baby bed-time.
How it really went down was more like …
Balance Olivia on my hip and figure out the smallest possible treat for Charlotte while she changes her mind 17 times over three entire choices. Dig through my purse, pay and sign the credit card slip – all one handed. Set up camp in the cozy, over-sized booth where groups of teenagers usually sit. Spend the next five minutes taking off the children’s coats and arranging the ice cream and napkins.
“Mommy, I have to go potty.”
Scoop up both girls, my purse, leave their coats and ice cream behind and hope for the best. Hold Charlotte over the potty so as to spare her bare bum from less-than-clean DQ toilets, while shewing Olivia away from touching anywhere else in the stall and praying she doesn’t drop her stinky elephant (this is her lovey) since she chews on his nose and can’t sleep without him. Wash our hands, get a little too wet before reaching for the unstocked paper towel dispenser, and finally make our way back to our booth where our slightly melted ice creams await.
Later that night, I found myself a little sore from the extended hold of a 30 pounder, sick in my stomach from a bad choice of dairy before bed (notice it’s only a bad choice for being dairy and not 5,000 extra calories) and trying to reign in an extremely hyper three-year old and tired, fussy baby.
Me: “Hey girls, it’s time for a very exciting bed-time adventure!”