You’d never know that 30 minutes prior she was crying her eyes out and refusing to sit for the photographer. Parks are the best places for Mommy’s sanity!
In the middle of running errands yesterday, we stopped for a treat at the frozen yogurt store. The lone man behind the register glanced up from his binder at us when we walked in. He barely acknowledged us as he seemed quite preoccupied with whatever he was working on. We stepped over to grab two containers, chose our flavors, and walked over to checkout. The man paused, put down his pen, and said “put your cups on the scales please.” We complied, and he silently weighed them. He told us the amount we owed, and after we paid, he said monotonously “have a smiley day.” Uh, ok, you too, Mr. Deadpan Serious. Stressed? Yep, he was, so I felt kinda bad for him. But the whole exchange bemused me greatly. Ever try to say “have a smiley day” with a frown? It’s almost impossible!
Oh, and the kicker was the tip jar sitting next to the cash register. Um, well maybe the person who should be tipped is me…. after all, I got the cups, I pulled the lever to dispense the treat, I carried them to the table, I dragged the high chair over and put it back, I cleaned off the mess we made, etc. It’s almost embarrassing for them to have that out!
Saturday evening we joined some friends for a picnic at our Y. The children relished (ha, clever pun, I know) the many games, hula hoops, balls, playground, and especially the bounce house. At the exit of the bounce course, I ended up being the police lady and made some kids get off. Some tried to climb back up the wrong way instead of exiting, while at the same time some other kids were attempting to slide down. The one helper in the middle of the bounce house hardly could stop the unruly behavior from his vantage point. One little kid even started bleeding after being bumped by another. Since no parents were supervising their kids (amazingly!!), I started directing traffic. Except some little turkeys wouldn’t listen and defiantly tried to go back up, so then I ended up having to yell at the kids to get out. I realized there actually is a Tiger Mom lurking inside me, which is funny since I hardly ever yell at my own kids. Oh yeah, and don’t get me started on the brats who cut in line in front of my kid!
Koma didn’t find the child bike seat that was positioned in front of her dad too interesting last week. We wondered if the wind hitting her face freaked her out. So, we searched Craigslist for a bike trailer and found a decent one. The test drive proved to be a positive experience. We hope it continues!
We met up with friends and walked downtown to the annual art festival. The girls watched magicians, played games, won prizes (like water bottle), stamped, created bookmarks, gazed at acrobatic women, ate ice cream, oohed and aahed over some amazing art. There are some very creative souls in this world!
Last year and this year (practically a tradition at this point) these two buddies posed in this very same corner in front of an artsy horse!
These pajama days rarely occur, so we relish each of them. It actually felt great to lounge around the house until late afternoon (we alllllmost made it, but ended up leaving our nest for an impromptu playdate). We played games (Unni won Chutes and Ladders), read an entire stack of library books (some twice!), worked puzzles, threw balls back and forth, colored with markers and pencils, napped, drank coffee (5 cups of decaf by me!), ate boong uh ppang, and played imaginary waitress at “Kokeeree Restaurant” with Halmoni and Halabuhji via phone.
As summer starts to wind down, and the calendar soon flips forward to September, we think more about schedules and routine. Since Unni loved the summer camp so much and asked to continue “preschool,” we decided to sign her up. She is super-excited. We’ll give preschool a try and see how she handles the routine. At this point, we’re focusing more on socialization with peers, and encouraging some separation from Mom. We’re pleased with the confidence she’s gained in just the few sessions this summer. For this moment in our lives, preschool seems like a good idea. Unni will feel like a big girl, Koma will benefit from one-on-one time with Mom, and Mom will be gifted a chance to address Koma’s major separation anxiety (which is another topic altogether!).
In my dream world, I would love to add a few more activities to Unni’s experience but some of that will wait. I’d like to start her with some music lessons and continue ballet for a little bit. She’s also expressed interest in different sports (e.g. tae kwon do, soccer, baseball). But, I also firmly believe that children should play at this age, so over-scheduling at age three borders on ridiculous. As the weeks progress, we’ll see how preschool pans out, and monitor appropriate activity levels for the girls. Is it possible to over-think parenting??
Our friends head back to school this week, so we’ve squeezed in as much park and pool time as possible recently.
And this kiddie boat ride at the park was Koma’s first one. She loved it! I held my breath the whole time wondering if she would try to stand up and test the water or something, but she handled the ride very well, excitedly turning the steering wheel as fast as possible.