Very early yesterday morning I was awakend by a sweet little voice saying: "BOO!". (It is Halloween weekend after all!)
It was my wake up call from sweet Owen, my four year old grandson. : ) Personally, I can't think of a nicer way to start my day in Minneapolis.
Eventually "Princess" Audrey joined us and the fun began! (Where do children get all of their energy?!)
I gave Audrey her little ballerina music/jewelry box and before I knew it, she was up and twirling just like the little plastic girl in the box. Grammie joined in, of course...until getting dizzy from all of the twirling around. (One of these days I will act my age...but, not anytime soon.)
Then Owen opened his Pirate Bingo game. We got ready to play but everytime that the "pirate" button was pushed and a word was given to match a picture on our card....we couldn't quite tell what the word was. So, Owen would repeat what he thought that he heard and we got hysterical laughing at his made up word. (Don't tell his parents, but some of the words sounded a bit like curse words.)
At this point, Mom and Dad headed to work and I was all alone. No need to panic, I thought. After all, I was a mother to two boys a million years ago. I can do this. I can take care of these two cutie patooties without doing too much harm. Right?
So, we decided to drive to the Mall of the America's. For those of you who might not know, this is a mall the size of a small country....but, there is a wonderful carnival section smack dab in the center...and I knew that the kids would have fun there. I set my trusty (?) GPS and off we went.
We parked the car and headed in. First stop was The Children's Place to buy Owen a new pair of gloves. As soon as Audrey spotted the dresses she was pointing and saying: "Audrey's dress! Audrey's dress!". The one that she was talking about was this little slinky, sparkly, black, leopard-patterned dress with several layers of black tulle at the bottom. I wasn't sure that this looked like a dress for a 2 year old...but, she absolutely wanted it. Fortunately, there weren't any in her size....so, we ended up settling on a leopard and tulle skirt....that she insisted on wearing out of the store....over her jeans. So, she did. (I mean, what's a Grammie to do? I'm such a softie.)
When we got to the ride area, our first stop was a toy store where I had promised the two of them that they could each pick out a toy. Audrey immediately grabbed an "Arial" Barbie doll with flowing red hair and a crown, gown and slippers. She was happy. Owen took a bit longer, but finally settled on a truck from the movie, "Cars".
Heading out of the store Audrey desperately wanted to get her doll out of the box...
Well, they pack toys in the boxes now so well that it takes scissors, knives, hacksaws, etc. just to get to the toy. It was impossible to do...and, heaven knows I tried! I finally got the woman behind the counter to tear it apart for us so that my little princess could hold her new doll. (Luckily, Owen is old enough now to understand waiting until one gets home to open presents.)
First stop, the Merry Go Round. I purchased several tickets and we were on our way! When we got to the front of the line, Audrey decided that she really didn't want to get up on one of those horses after all. Owen did want to go....but, he had to stand in front of a measuring line...and, he was too short to go alone. Sooooo, I ended up paying for both of them and carried Audrey on with me....we got Owen strapped in...and then we sat on the little bench. She held me tightly the entire ride. (Again, I am realizing why we have our children at a young age!)
We came upon these cute little cars that went around an innocent looking track. "Oh boy! This will be fun!" said a naive Grammie. But, again, Audrey became hesitant right as we got to the front of the line...and we were faced with the "not tall enough issue" for Owen. I whispered in his ear..."stand up really tall" hoping that he could reach the 36 inch line. But, all to no avail....he could not go it alone and I couldn't leave Audrey alone. Luckily, a daddy nearby asked if I wanted him to ride with Owen and I could ride in the car behind them with Audrey. We were all set. The cars began to move on the track. As we rounded the corners of the track that baby whipped around like nobody's business. ( I do think that I have whiplash and will call my lawyer as soon as I return to Bham. : )
It was the l-o-n-g-e-s-t ride that I have ever been one. The daddy with Owen in front of us was having a ball, even putting both of his arms up in the air as he screamed with delight. Audrey and I were horrified and every time we passed the lady with the on/off switch I gave her one of those looks that said, "STOP this $&*#@!! thing NOW! She wasn't paying any attention.
Enough of the rides...time for lunch. After walking what seemed to be three or four miles, we finally came upon a McDonald's on another floor far from the rides! I could have hugged Ronald McDonald right then and there if I didn't think that it would embarrass my grandkids.
Remembering that I was told that it was important to get the two of them in for their naps prior to 1:00, I decided that it was time to head back home. There was only one problem....where had I parked the car????? Twenty minutes later, I located the first store that we went to and that led us to the parking lot and the car. The kids were now getting a bit cranky....and, so was Grammie. I started to drive and Audrey fell sound asleep before I made the first turn. (and, with a sigh, Grammie was dreaming about the nap that she might take too.... as soon as they got home.)
My wonderfully joyous adventure with the grandkiddos was just beginning....and, I was laughing my way through every delightful minute of it! : )