Saturday, January 20, 2007

Think he can make me a set of balloon earplugs?

Dear Andrew & Abby,

Often, when someone is pregnant for the first time, they like to ask for parenting tips. Okay, so they don't always ask, but people sure like to give them. Oh, they tell them all kinds of things about diapers and bottle-feeding versus breast-feeding and co-sleeping and on and on. And do you know what I tell them? Here it is: Go to the movies. Right now, before the baby is born. Once the baby is here, movies will be on hold for awhile. Going out to eat, that's a piece of cake - don't worry about that! You can totally take a baby out to eat. And I mean it. We did it when Andrew was a baby. It was great. He slept in his little carrier and Steve and I enjoyed a nice meal just like we used to. No problem.

But as I was reminded tonight...well, things have changed. You two aren't babies any more and that whole going out to eat sure don't sit quietly in your carriers any more.

Tonight, your dad and I lost our minds again and took you both out to eat. We are SO CRAZY! TGIFriday's, Friday night, 7pm, Indianapolis. You two were non-stop through the 40 minute wait (Andrew: "This is taking forEEVVVEERRRR!!"), the waiting for our drinks (Abby: "I want CHOCOLATE milk! Where's my MILK?"). Then we got your food and there was about two minutes of quiet while you put food into your mouths. Andrew actually ate really well - a whole grilled cheese sandwich, all the mandarin oranges, half of Abby's spaghetti, and the breadstick from my salad. Abby, not so much. After yelling at me that she did not want to eat her spaghetti with a fork and ordering me to CUT IT UP! she ate about two bites. The rest of the time was spent bouncing, dancing, wiggling, and sliding around on the seat, and getting the contents of her spoon on my sleeve. Thank goodness for the balloon man - that offered another three minutes of relative peace. Of course then there was the fighting with the balloon animals later: Andrew's dangling lure hat and blue wiener dog and Abby's black giraffe (she picked the color - that's my girly girl!). I'm not sure how it is that a booth that can hold six adults can barely contain our family of four.

Through it all, I did manage to eat a salad, a few bites of my fish, avoid two bones in the fish, and enjoy most of my angel mousse cake (yummy!). Not to bash TGIF's, but other than the cake, it was a pretty horrible experience all the way around. I'm not sure the $30 gift card we were spending was really worth the hassle. But that's what happens when Mommy & Daddy lose their minds. At least we got some lovely balloon animals out of the deal.

Once we left, for about the first half of the ride home, you both talked non-stop and over the top of each other, mostly to me, mostly starting with "Mom? Mom? Mom!" You are both incapable of continuing a sentence or thought until I respond to my name. There are days I wish I could change my name from Mom to something - anything - else. But then, Abby fell asleep and Andrew zoned out...ahhh...quiet.


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