I took the children to Michael's with the stated purpose of getting 1) pretty paper to finish decorating my new chandelier and 2) stuff to include in letters to our sponsored child. I told the monkeys they were getting nothing. That wasn't why we were there.
Right. Before we even walked in the store, I found some wooden models for only $1. Monkeys 1 and 2 got sailboats. Monkey3 wasn't interested, which was fine. Because we weren't there to get stuff for the kids.
Then I found these.
Different animals for everyone. I also found these:
I told the oldest two monkeys they would have to spend their own money on the swords, as I had spent quite enough on treats already. No problem, they were good with that. (And had some money left over from Christmas gifts.) Of course, Monkey3 didn't have a way to approve that, so he didn't get one. Remember that point. It will come up later.
So, returning home, I got Monkey3 down for a nap and then helped my two oldest with their sailboats.
Not bad, if I do say so myself. Monkey3 got up, and I sent them outside with a snack (graham crackers.) Monkey1 wanted peanut butter on his, and solemnly informed me that he would be the waiter, and spread the peanut butter, because he could be a helpful waiter who spreads peanut butter for people. Perfect. I stayed in the house for two seconds of quiet.
Just then I looked at the clock, realized it was 5 o'clock, and the Mad Scientist opened the gate. We chatted in the kitchen for a few minutes, and I suggested Chick-Fil-A for dinner. Because, strange as it sounds (now that I type it out and realize how little I actually accomplished today), I was beat. Then we separated our brawling sons, the larger of whom was beating the smaller with his new foam sword. We determined that the issue was, the youngest wanted to have a sword fight, and so had attempted to appropriate his brother's weapon. We tried to give him his sister's weapon, and she immediately decided she wanted it herself. I decided to buy another sword asap, and we headed out to the car.
As I buckled Monkey1 into his seat, sword in his hand, he announced "If a policeman pulls us over, I am going to point my sword at him and growl ferociously."
Probably, I should have kept a straight face and explained that policemen are generally nice people who do their best to keep us all safe, but that's not what I did. Instead, I laughed. Hysterically.
Tonight was Kid's Night. I didn't know that when we decided to go, but it worked out. There was a balloon artist. Monkey1 was fascinated, and overcame his distaste for talking to strangers so much, that he actually walked up to the man, waited for an opportune moment (with some gentle guidance), and asked him where he learned "to make pretty things with balloons." This was HUGE. My son doesn't talk to strangers. He announced in the car that he also wants "to make pretty things with balloons to make small children happy." My son is now an aspiring balloon artist.
(The Mad Scientist said "There goes my retirement plan.")
I have to share one more thing, because it was just so funny, but I'm going to have to reword slightly to make it more appropriate. Be warned.
Listening to chatter in the backseat on the way back to Michael's (returning one thing, picking up another sword), we were first stunned, and then hysterical, as we heard our sweet Monkey2 casually state "Oh dear, my [nursing apparatus] is just twirling in the breeze!"
This was followed by an announcement that Larry Boy was stuck in the balloon rocket ship, and life went crazily on. :-D