This Friday was supposed to have been Sam's first "guy" slumber party. (My dad said that when it's guys it's not a slumber party, but a sleep over. I had no idea, lol) Anyway, Gentry was all cleared to come, but the other little boy ended up being out of town with a sick family member, so the party fizzled. Plus, due to schedules and such, the girls were going to have to be here as well. That was going to leave my niece, Addison, the only one of the cousins NOT at my house Friday night! How unfair! So I talked to Sam about it, explained everything and we decided that he should just have a "cousin slumber party" instead. What a sweet kid. So to make up for the poo that lead to a fizzled out party, I decided to surprise the kids by taking them to see The Polar Express.
I had dinner ready when they got home from school on Friday and then whisked them all off to karate after that. Keep in mind karate is 25 minutes to the north of our house. The theatre is 25 minutes to the south. There was some serious driving in the mom taxi that night! I managed to keep the whole thing a surprise until we got to the city limits of Grove. Oh the jubilant screaming and rejoicing! Kady has seen 3 movies in the theatre and does pretty well, but it depends on her mood. I made sure she had a good nap that afternoon and also made sure I had plenty of money for snacks, lol. Bribery works so well with that child.
The line was out the door when we got there. For me this was no big deal, I'm pretty patient. Husband, however, is not. He immediately sighed and started complaining. I was talking through clenched teeth out the side of my mouth saying "For the love of God, darling, if you start this shit I will murder you right here and scream self-defense." He wasn't scared, but at least he shut up. So I forked out $32 for 5 child and 2 adult movie tickets. I knew what it was going to cost before I got there. Husband's jaw nearly hit the ground. He started with the "THIRTY TWO BUCKS FOR MOVIE TICKETS!?!?" and again I started with the clenched jaw threats. If he thought the tickets were pricey, he was going to have a stroke at the price of concessions. "Okay, here we go: I need 5 small Sierra Mists, one large Mountain Dew, a small popcorn, green Sour Straws, a Kit Kat and a box Junior Mints." The poor kid behind the counter was so sweet and even gave the boys cups so they could split the Junior Mints without much fighting. Pretty intuitive for a teenager, I thought. The bill there was $18.75. More sighing directly behind me. An evil thought was passed to him through my newly honed psychic bitching skills.
Gone are the days of husband and I sitting side-by-side in a movie theatre. At least when the kids are present. With a preschooler we have learned that you must sit at opposite ends of the row so that you can effectively keep her from wandering into the aisles and bugging the crap out of the other folks. So I walked into the row first, trailing 5 kids behind me. Husband closed off the parade and we then proceded to take off coats, keep cups full of liquid, not spill candy and all this while keeping low profiles because the previews had begun. The box of Junior Mints did end up getting spilled, but the tears were quickly quelled when Addison shared her Kit Kat with the boys. Somehow Paul ended up with Kady, HA! For once I didn't have the squirmy child with a razor-sharp tailbone wiggling all over my lap. Ah, sweet freedom.
The movie itself was absolutely magical! I was so drawn into it that I found myself gasping, sighing and yes, even crying. The story is so precious and timeless and I don't care what those stupid reviewers on Yahoo say, it's a good movie.
The highlight of the film was when Addison was so caught up in the story that she yelled out "GRAB THE CHRISTMAS PRESENT!" at the top of her lungs, threw her arms in the air and jumped out of her seat. The entire place was laughing at that. She was on the edge of her seat through the whole movie, wide-eyed and bouncing. She'd lean over and breathlessly ask, "What's going to happen next, Aunt Kiki?" and I'd have to rub her back to calm her down and say, "Don't know, sweetie, but we'll see soon!" When inside I wanted to yell "What's going to happen next??"
Husband wasn't all that impressed with it. But then again, the man hasn't believed in Santa Claus in like 35 years. What could I expect? He was still seething about the cost of it all. But in my opinion, it's like the MasterCard commercials - totally priceless. Those 5 kids were caught up in a magical story about Santa and Christmas and elves and presents for nearly 2 hours that night. So was I. It was so breath-taking to look down the row at those precious children looking up in fascination at the story unfolding before them. It made any stress I'd endured, any miles I'd put on my van, any money I'd spent totally fade away.
This year I figured was going to be a dicey year for Ab, being a big 8 year old and all. She hasn't really questioned Santa's existence, but still I figured her time was pretty limited. The movie took care of any doubts she might've had. She is still completely convinced. So am I.