Thursday, October 6, 2011

Out of Practice

Dave used to travel a lot for work, but recently he hasn't had to travel very much, except for an occasional short trip to the Bay Area. Last week Dave had one of these one-night business trips (which by his company's standards, hardly even counts as a trip). I had the kids by myself for Monday and Tuesday. I'm a little bit out of practice on this business trip thing and I had a hard time on Monday, so I decided to make some plans for Tuesday to make things easier on me. The YMCA didn't have any Childwatch spots available, so I decided to take the kids to "Pump it Up" (one of these inflatable bounce house places) after school so I could read a book while they played. Then we would go out to dinner on the way home and I had a babysitter set up for the evening.

I took the kids to Pump it Up and settled in to read my book-- or at least tried to. They were playing really loud music-- so loud that it was hard to concentrate on my book (and, as the mother of 4 children, I'm pretty talented at blocking out noise). Jared felt a need to race Jackson up the slide which incited screeching and screaming in Jackson and protests of unfairness from Jared when I tried to mediate between the two of them. The two of them argued incessantly in between time-outs.

Addy discovered that the drinking fountain was WAY more fun than any of the bounce houses, so she spent her time seeing how wet she could get her clothes. I made Jackson go to the potty as soon as we got there, but about 1 hour into our excursion, as he was walking between bounce houses he stood in one place with the ever-so-slightest knee squat and a slightly pained expression on his face. "Jackson!!" I called, "Stop. Let's get to the potty!" But it was too late. He had pooped in his underwear. I took him to the bathroom where he got put in a pull-up. (I admit it. The underwear got deposited in the Pump it Up bathroom garbage. There's only so much one can handle. My belated apologies to the staff for the smell....)

After I got Jackson sufficiently cleaned up, he sat on time out for the rest of the time we were there-- which, of course, incited more screaming. I finally gave up and decided it was time for dinner. I had bought a groupon for Baja Fresh, so I decided to stop there to get something moderately tasty/healthy for our dinner. We ordered my Baja Bowl and four kids meals and we sat up to eat. The tray our food came on got stuck in the center of the table. Someone bumped it and it sent Camryn's plate flying off the table, Mexican Rice scattering everywhere. I dove to save what I could of her Taquitos and in the shuffle, the tray got bumped again. This time Jackson's plate went flying off the table. At this point, I realized that we didn't have enough time to finish eating and still get home in time to meet the babysitter and for me to make it to my appointment, so we packed all of our food in to-go boxes and got in the car. The babysitter was waiting at our house when we pulled into the garage. She came to help get the kids out of the car. As she opened the passenger sliding door, the door handle broke off.

I think this may be the part of the story where I start wildly tossing kids out of the car, saying "Please take them!" as I drive off, screeching around the corner. Or start scratching my head at exactly what part of "Pump it Up" and "Baja Fresh" combined with four kids sounded fun. Or ponder how exactly to break it to my husband that business trips and I don't get along so well anymore.


Jared and Allyson said...

That gave me a good chuckle and made me feel oh so much better about Jared traveling. Unfortunately, he travels a bit more than Dave so I have those type of episodes a bit more regularly than I'd like. I'm glad to hear that I'm not alone, but sorry you had to survive the craziness.

Thanks for sharing and giving me a LOL session.

Suzie Petunia said...

Oh dear! That unfolded like some crazy family sitcom! I could say "Some days are like that". But the truth is, I find that MOST days are like that at this stage in our lives. Business trips... booooo!