This past week my nephew turned 7. His birthday party was on Saturday and he decided to take all of his friends to see Mr. Peabody and Sherman. My boys were super excited to go to the movie, and having just done the whole movie birthday party thing myself I knew just what to expect (especially since my brother chose the same exact theater I’d used as well).
Kaylee is still just a little too young to sit through a full movie so, knowing that the boys would be occupied for a good 2-3 hours I decided to take her out and do something fun with her. The question was…what to do? I wanted to let this be a special time for her, but at her age and with the time constraint our options were somewhat limited. I finally decided to just ask her what she wanted to do, but she wasn’t very forthcoming with ideas.
Taking her to lunch was out because the party didn’t start until 2:00 and taking her to dinner was out because I’d have to pick the boys up again at 5. Then it hit me, the boys would be getting birthday cake at the party so why not take her out to get a treat as well, and that meant ice cream. I filled Kaylee in on my decision and her eyes lit up with excitement. Evidently ice cream alone was enough to make her afternoon special. With her satisfied with the plan I then decided to combine her afternoon out with a few errands that needed done. I had a haircut coupon that was about to expire and I figured this was a good opportunity to get Cameron’s birthday shopping started without him underfoot.
We left the house around 1:30 and headed over to the movie theater. It seems that winter is on its last legs and the day was semi-warm so I had the kids dressed in long sleeves and light jackets. When we arrived at the theater the boys piled out of the van and Brendan asked if he could just leave his coat in the car. Deciding it was even nicer than I’d originally thought and realizing that by leaving them in the car the boys wouldn’t have to worry about keeping track of their jackets during the movie I agreed to this.
It only took a few minutes to get the boys dropped off and soon Kaylee and I were back in the van heading for our first stop. Kaylee is horrendously slow at eating. It doesn’t matter what you’re feeding her or how much food there is, she can and will take hours to consume it. I’ve been meaning to get her hair trimmed for quite a while and I didn’t want to lose this opportunity, so I told her we would get her haircut first then get our ice cream afterward (the birthday shopping was one of those things I would have liked to get done but if we ran out of time it was not the end of the world).
Kaylee doesn’t usually mind getting her hair cut, and gets quite jealous when I pull out the clippers at home to do Matt and the boys haircuts, but on this day I think she was just too excited about our outing. She wiggled and giggled through the entire process which made it very difficult on the beautician and the haircut ended up taking twice as long as it should have. Finally finished she jumped down from the chair and headed for the door. The beautician offered her a sucker, which is standard for our haircut place but Kaylee politely turned her down saying, “I can’t have a sucker today because I’m going to get ice cream.”
The lady seemed shocked that Kaylee would willingly turn down a sucker. I explained to Kaylee that she could still have a sucker but that we would save it to eat later since we were going to get our ice cream now. Kaylee’s face lit up like it had when I suggested the ice cream outing in the fist place and she asked the lady if she could please have a sucker. With a mango sucker clutched in her pudgy little fist she and I headed to the car.
By the time we arrived at the ice cream shop Kaylee knew exactly what she wanted to order. I ordered her ice cream and mine and then allowed her to pick where we would sit. Initially she wanted to sit outside to eat her ice cream, but the wind had started to pick up and I felt the cool breeze might make it just a little too chilly for us to be outside eating ice cream, so she settled for sitting next to the window looking out over the outside tables instead.
For more than an hour Kaylee sat happily chatting away and munching on her ice cream. Finally I noticed her bites becoming slower and slower and figured she was probably getting full. It took a little coaxing to convince her to admit it (because she didn’t want to waste perfectly good ice cream) but she finally said she was full and ready to go.
I had a good idea of what to get Cameron for his birthday. He’s been on a huge Ninja Turtle kick recently (which I find hilarious because I think he’s only seen the show once or twice since we don’t have TV and they don’t run the episodes on Netflix). His invitations were Ninja Turtles, his cake will be Ninja Turtles, so it would make sense that all of his presents would be Ninja Turtles. Kaylee and I spent quite a bit of time pouring over the Ninja Turtle toy selection and finally picked a few to put into the cart.
Finally it was time to go and pick up the boys. Kaylee had been good as gold all day long. She seemed to have a really good time doing the errands and of course eating her ice cream. As I loaded the bags of birthday presents into the trunk I realized the one flaw in my plan. Kaylee, who was still chattering away about the things we had bought, might be just a little too young to keep a secret about what we’d purchased. We ran into that with Brendan around this age. I just calmly looked at her and made sure she understood that she shouldn’t tell the boys what we had bought.
Amazingly enough she followed through too. Though she told the boys all about her afternoon she never once mentioned the presents in the back of the car. She and I may need to make time to go shopping more often.