Sunday, March 9, 2008

Thank you, lady at the mall!

On Saturday, my family and I went to the mall. We haven’t been to the mall in ages. I have a serious phobia to crowds. Crowds, for me, are often defined as other people being in the mall with me. Saturday was especially busy. There was some sort of police dept. firefighters bizarre with vehicles and a huge amount of really fine looking community service men in uniform. YUM. The kids were acting their ages…6 and 3. I wanted to shop for clothes and knowing the kids would never stand for that I sent DH and all four kids to get a drink in the bookstore at the coffee shop located there.

I looked around the clothing store. Tried on a couple of things and then realized that DH had the credit card and I would need him to pay. I went to the bookstore and sat down with the kids. DH was at the counter. Apparently, I shop for clothes really fast or the bookstore has the slowest barista on the planet. While I was sitting there, chatting with the kids about what they had been doing while I was shopping, this lady walks over to our table and says, “Can I say something about your kids?” OH CRAP, I hate, HATE unsolicited advice and am not that gracious about taking it. But, with my kids sitting there I felt the need to at least attempt being diplomatic so, I say, “Uh, yeah, sure.” (I’m eloquent that way)

She then proceeded to tell me that my kids are…The BEST behaved kids that she has ever seen. She went on and on…I actually got a little verklempt she was so complimentary about my kids. It was such a pick me up, it made me feel good about our parenting style. When DH came over with the drinks, I told him about the compliments and I could see him visibly swell with pride over his well-behaved brood.

About that time, Lukey, in an effort to communicate more effectively by adding large arm movements to his story spilled his drink. I took him to the bathroom to get him cleaned up. The two older girls came with me because they were beginning to get a little squirrely. While I was gone, the woman came over again to tell my husband how great our kids were and asked if she could buy them a treat. DH is not one to turn down free food so he of course said yes. Free and cookies are two of his favorite words in the English language…put ‘em together and he is in heaven.

Eventually all the cookies were eaten, the drinks were drank, spilled or thrown away and it was time for us to go. As we were leaving, my oldest daughter went over and told the nice lady, “Thank you for the cookies, they were sooo good!” The mall lady got a little teary eyed.

My good mom feeling lasted for quite a while. I don’t know if pod people replaced my kids or if the mall was pumping in air borne tranquilizers through the heating system. Whatever it was, I was able to buy some clothes at the clothing store…the kids sat quietly by the register while the sales clerk tried to talk me into getting the store credit card eventually ringing up my purchase even though I could have saved $11.00 blah, blah, blah.

They stayed together in a group as we walked through the rest of the mall, and left the play area without throwing a fit when we said it was time to leave.

As we were exiting the mall, we decided to buy some drinks from Target for the ride home. At that point, whatever was keeping my kids from being themselves wore off. Lucas took off down an aisle and wouldn’t come back when called, Dee Dee started to cry because Lola wouldn’t let her carry the bag from the clothing store and a passing couple gave all of us a dirty look and the obligatory, “Some people!” once they were passed.

I started to laugh hysterically…yup those are my kids! I did look around for the mall lady... knowing my luck she'd be just around the cornder waiting to demand her cookes back. I must have had good Karma that day...we got out without the nice mall lady seeing my 'real' kids!

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