For the germs.
For the snot.
For the coughing and sneezing and general whininess.
And the kids were even worse!
I swear, we were on the mend when we decided to make our way to the Fair at the PNE. Pretty much. Close enough. Because Dad being able to take a weekday off entirely AND the cousins planning to go that same day AND incredibly wonderful benefactors arranging for 2 of our 6 tickets to be free… are all goliath-sized motivators in our household.
So, we dosed them all up with Tylenol Cough and Cold. We brought water and fruit and our absolute faith that rides and mini donuts and as-seen-on-tv-kiosks and mini donuts and rigged carnival games and, yes, still more mini donuts are worth all the effort.
Rides are a new experience for our boy. From his perspective it seems to go something like this:
- watching from behind iron bars while other children do something fun (not cool)
- climbing onto a large contraption that smells, feels and IS a completely Strange and Unusual Experience (also not cool)
- something’s happening, there is movement and this May Possibly Be Fun
- after a full minute of Possible Fun it becomes clear that this is The Best Thing That Has Ever Happened To Him and He Never Ever Wants It To End
- at which point the ride ends and we pry his fingers from the bar and drag our devastated toddler to the next round
Poor kid. He was a confusing mass of excitement, exhilaration and disappointment all day. But he loved the donuts.
B spent the day coveting every painted face she saw. Particularly the kitty-cats. It was cute when she meow-ed and pretended to groom the lady sitting beside us in the shade. But all day we distracted her from her quest to get “a kitty…uhhh… MY cheek.” Because history has taught us that face painting is Not Her Thing. And I hate, hate, hate paying for that sort of thing. If only I had some eyeliner and lipstick in my purse, I could have done it myself. Cause I’m that kind of mom (I was thinking inventive, but yes, cheap is also accurate). She had as hard a day as anyone. Waiting is hard for her and she was tired and feeling sick and more than anything she just wanted her very own cat on her cheek. On our way out of the park we finally gave it a shot. And she sat as still as I have ever seen her while the lady painted a little white cat with pink sparkles on her cheek. And she danced all the way to the van. By the time we got home, it was smudged beyond recognition. Still, it was the best $3 we spent that day.
C is FINALLY tall enough for the big kid rides. At 10, this has been a long time coming, and she is a whole 2 inches over the 48″ cutoff. So, we tried a number of the big rides (for which my husband considers me a hero, despite the fact that I usually love them even more than the kids, except not so much with a head cold and a fever, so I will hang onto hero status with both hands). She loved almost everything. Except the boat. She did NOT like the boat. And she wanted to get off it almost immediately. And it seemed to go on and on as I coached her through it and held her close and assured her it would be over soon. I felt like the worst parent ever born since I was the one who convinced her to try it. This is a girl who loves the coasters and the dropping elevator rides, but NOT the boat. She talked through the whole experience, expressing exactly how she felt and what she wanted and what she Never Ever Wanted To Do Again. Apparently all those “use your words” talks are paying off. What a trooper.
L is too tall for the elephant ride. And the mini cars. And the boats. So basically, a gigantic hulk of a child. Or a willowy preteen and we just have trouble admitting it. With her out of the mix, there were quite a few rides which were out of the question for our littles. Although when the mood is right, B is quite capable. And when it isn’t, she needs a good deal of coaxing and encouraging and holding onto her so she doesn’t leap from the still-moving ride. We miss our helper-girl. Though the helper-young-woman is pretty cool too. Plus, she likes to go on all the rides with her mom.
The Dad, well, he’s a hero because he spent a lot of money (not his favourite thing, at all), and he held the bags and entertained the littles and even used the baby change room on his own more than once. The only ride he likes is the log ride. Which is yet another reason why we are a perfect match. Because I’m NOT a fan of wet underwear.
So here it is; the moral of the story. The wisdom we have gleaned during this great adventure:
Enjoy every moment, for they are fleeting. The ride is over before you know it.
Have patience; don’t be in such a hurry. When you get impatient ,you only start to worry. Remember that God is patient too, and think of all the times when others have to wait for you (as sung in my head over and over again today thanks to one of my very first records “Music Machine”. Yes, record, as in vinyl. Sigh, I’m so very old… and cheesy).
Finally, and perhaps most importantly:
Fishy crackers are always the answer. Always.
So here’s me: my feet hurt, my nose is runny, and it is clear that this head cold is here for the long haul, BUT I’m glad we went. People like us are the reason hand sanitizer is a good idea in public places. So sorry.