November 26th, 2004


Almost Anything

I now know that I will do nearly anything for my child.

This morning, I hatched the brilliant idea that Jet and I would go to IHOP for breakfast before I sent him to his pre-school. They're open today and we had to pay for two days, anyway, so I designated myself the driver as John's still sick AND he's tired from the party last night.

Jet woke up a little before 6, and John was nice enough to go and put him back to sleep, so at 7:20, I was up and ready to go, and John went back to sleep. Jet didn't actually get up until nearly 8! Which was a nice thing for the long-term, but it meant that, today, we were already on the verge of being late for Jet's 8:30 class time. Oops. But I decided, what the heck, if Jet had to go to school, he might as well go and have something he likes before he does so. So we headed for IHOP and Jet was all primed with expectations of a "Funny Face Pancake". Which, I'll admit, may have been a mistake.

When we got there the parking lot was full. When we walked in, the whole waiting area was completely crowded. This for a restaurant that's only been open for a couple of weeks. Wow. Jet was wearing his Jester's hat, given that I would call him, interchangablely "Jetser" and "Jester" it seemed appropriate when Walt and Cathie gave it to him when he was far too small to wear it. Today, though, he loved wearing it, and happily crowed that it kept the rain off his head. (yes, it was raining when we were walking from the far-off place we found to the restaurant) Then everyone in the waiting area commented on it to him, all very favorably, and he would SMILE with those dimples and women were already swooning. He's gonna be trouble...

Then, of course, he had to tell them that it was his Christmas hat, with Jingle bells! And they'd coo. After about twenty minutes of waiting there was a group of six women all looking at him at the same time, and it was just too much. He hid against me and they all giggled and turned away. He crept out when it was obvious they weren't paying attention to him, so he started telling them, loudly, about how his hat jingled, when they called his name for our table.

I had a minute to figure out that my blintzes were still on the menu. A very, very experienced waitress bustled out, and Jet immediately piped up with, "I want a Funny Face pancake!!" He'd spotted it on his picture menu and was ecstatic about being able to order it himself. "And a hot choc'lt! And... and oran' juice!" The waitress glanced at me, smart woman. I just nodded and grinned. I then ordered my blintzes and coffee, and she was off. We got our food in about ten minutes, flat. Whew. Jet took that long to get through all the whipped cream on his hot chocolate, and then drink part of it with a spoon.

Jet plowed through the smile of his Funny Face, chocolate chips and all. I got through one and a half blintzes before Jet started peeking around the corner of the booth and abandoning his pancake. I told him, then, that we couldn't take the hot chocolate with us, and he sat down again and drank away. I should have brought the camera, as he was very cute on the bench to the booth, working away industriously at his drink.

I was full by the second blintz, so I told the waitress we were done. Then I pried Jet out of the booth, and headed to the bathrooms. He sat down after I told him we just had to do it, though he had to stow his hat in a safe place so it wouldn't fall in the toilet; and he sat and talked with me while he took his time doing his duty. It was kind of funny just sitting there with a chattering three-year-old, while someone took a two-year-old into the next booth and did a very, very fast trip. I live in the comfort of knowing that Jet probably won't ever have hemerroids from trying to go too fast. Hee.

We headed back to the car, his tiny hand in mine as we threaded through parked cars, stayed out of the way of cars zooming through the lot, etc. It was fun. We got to the van, and Jet started arguing, vehemently, that he wasn't going to game school, he was going home. Given that my heart wasn't that into letting him go, but my head was saying that I really, really could use the time without him, at home, I took him to Seven Oaks anyway. We had the usual agreement, if it was closed, he'd go home, this time, rather than to Holy Moses school. But when we walked in, and I saw some ladies that could direct us, I asked where the pre-school was, and they told us, "They're in the computer room."

I felt Jet suddenly get really interested. "Computer room! I want to go to the computer room!"

So we went over to the computer room, I took Jet's coat off, and I suddenly hear a choir of voices saying, "Jet! Hey, it's Jet! Good Morning, Jet!" Hee. He ignored them all. He just made a beeline to one of the computer consoles. Child of Martha. :-)

I dropped his coat of in his room, and his lunch on the lunch cart. Then I headed to the front desk and found a date error on something they'd posted. The lady at the front desk was very grateful that I had pointed it out non-confrontationally, and worked to fix it while I asked about vacation forms (which are actually supposed to be filled out two weeks in advance... we only get two weeks of it, though, so I'm not worried about being able to use it all before summer, with John and I getting five and four weeks of vacation a year, we'll be taking it) and about the cost of the Parents' Night Out. Four two evenings they'll take the kids for an ungodly number of hours for just $25! Whoowee!

So now I'm home, and catching up on journal.

Day at the Movie

Soon after I started writing this morning, John woke up and went out and got The Chronicles of Riddick as well as a breakfast burrito from The Burrito Kitchen. He enjoyed his very spicy breakfast while I wrote and then we sat down on our recliners, with a bucket of caramel popcorn and watched the movie with the volume loud enough to shake the house during the big battle scenes.

That was great. :-) No lines, no tickets, no waiting through advertisements, and it cost us a buck. Hee.

I really enjoyed it. It had different moral tensions that the first movie had, and it had a lot more FX than choices. There were a few, and they were interesting and reminded me, very much, of a Japanese samuri movie more than anything. Sometimes I feel like American movie making is moving more and more towards what Americans "think" is Asian/Oriental, occassionally I catch glimpses of the real thing and that's always startling.

Then we got to see the extras and I got to watch parts of it with the trivia on. That was a lot of fun. I got a good ways into knitting John's rainbow hoodie, but when I had him try on the hood it was enormously and hideously too big for him. So I started taking it apart.

Then we went and got Jet from the pre-school, entered the hell that is Wal-Mart on Black Friday. There were a few things we had to pick up before Portland, and a few things for Macy's birthday party. So we were pretty set when we finally got through the maze of twisty register lines, all alike. Instead of braving a bunch of other things, we decided to just go home, regroup, plan, and see what there was we really wanted to do.

After a potty battle royale, we headed to Boulder. Jet fell asleep in the car, and we believe, from his actions, that he hadn't had a nap, so it was an okay thing. John and I then took turns hauling Jet's limp body around Boulder. He had on a down vest, his fur hat, and we'd put mittens and a thick sweater, wool socks, and thick pants on him, so he seemed entirely comfortable while we walked around, shopped through some pretty nice toy stores, and on the last swap, when Jet went into my arms, he woke up at the west end of the walking Mall. We went a little further, hit one store, and ended up at the Jax Fish House.

There are times when I'm really glad that I can bring my three-year-old into $30 a plate restaurants without a single qualm. He was great. The Kunamoto oysters were just as good, fresh, crisp, and wonderful with just a bit of horseradish. Yum. I started with a cup of the tomato-lobster bisque. It was sweet and savory with a crisp, chewy cheese crouton on top. Then I had a huge crab cake on a bun, with a mountain of crisp fried onions, and a huge plate of cole slaw. John had some kind of bluenose bass with a green curry and a mango chutney. Yum. Jet got a huge plate of "fish sticks" and fries, with real fish, so Jet didn't know what to do with them. "They're not straight!" he said. So he wouldn't eat them, but he did pretty well with the fries.

After dinner, Jet went to the potty and had a great time singing the whole time he was sitting there. John giggled a lot on telling me when they came back. The father at the table behind me had gone at the same time and enjoyed the concert. It's good that the person that was treated to it enjoyed it. :-) On the way out, I managed to "just" snap the chin strap of Jet's fur hat onto him. With John tried it, Jet got tickled by the whole process and couldn't stop giggling, which set John off, too. But I managed to get it on him, and he started giggling and shouting, "I can't hear! I can't hear!" and John called him a pumpkin head, and Jet said, just as loudly, "I am NOT a pumpkin head!!" and then giggled and giggled when John said, "Hey! How did you hear that?"

We walked through the cold back towards the car, stopping at the kite shop near the car. But there were lots of people out, and they were all smiling at Jet in his fur hat, who was happy as a clam and dancing around and singing, and chasing all the toys and colorful displays. At the Boulder Art Coop, he wanted to go in, and a lady said, "We have balloons if he wants one..." and he marched right up and said, "Green, please! I'd like a green one, please." She was so charmed she even put a loop on it for him to hold onto. Of course, the balloon started bumping all the ceiling displays, so we headed back out.

When we got to the kite store, I held onto the balloon, and, eventually, to Jet's mitten as well, as Jet started to systematically explore every single game set in the store. He would sit with each game and play with it, discover how it was put together, how to take it apart, and then how it was made. Then he would move onto the next one. He'd gotten through four by the time we were done with all the shopping we wanted to do, and there were still dozens and dozens to go. Oops. Many of them really nice and still rather inexpensive. So we finally just negotiated our extraction. It took another ten to fifteen minutes, but was worth the doing.

Jet was happy and singing all the way home. We took a little time to watch part of a movie, and then he went to bed pretty easily. Whew. I get to sleep in tomorrow morning. Yay!
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