Anna and I got some rare one on one time this morning when Mary woke up talking about a dream that would generally occur only after one drops acid and I determined she was feverish and therefore not going to be attending art class with us.
“There were piggies!” she said animatedly, her cheeks bright pink. “They were sitting in trees and brushing their teeth and eating mud!”
She also didn’t want breakfast, a sure sign she was down for the count, at least for a little while. Mary and Anna are their daddy’s girls and missing a meal ranks high on the list of Worst Things Ever. But it wasn’t all bad. Husband Tim is home from school until the third and that meant a morning of pajamas for the oldest and youngest and an art class date for Anna and me. (But not before we stopped for coffee and a donut, of course. “A big donut! With sprinkles!”)
All the way to art class, Anna asked when we would be there. Through a mouthful of the donut we split 70/30 (gee, why am I not losing weight?) she asked where Miss Stacie was. Miss Stacie teaches Mary and Anna’s art class and Anna has a bit of a girl crush on her. If we drive by the building where art class is, we hear about Miss Stacie. See a blue minivan on the road? “Dat Miss Stacie car!” And any bit of coloring or painting done at home must be hung on the wall with great exclamation as Anna pretends to run her own art class, with Mary and Lily as somewhat unwilling (and unwitting) participants.
Excitement was at an all time high as I parked Tim’s car (smaller, gas efficient, good for transporting one or two monkeys but not the whole clan) and got her into art class, where it was a small gathering of just one other little boy. Anna immediately refused to say hi to Miss Stacie, which is also par for the course for her. Anna’s hero worship exists at manageable distances only.
Miss Stacie got out the paint. Did Anna want to paint? Of course not. Anna wanted to cling to me like a rhesus monkey. Did Anna want to make a Happy 2012 hat to wear this weekend? No, Anna wanted to watch Mommy paint on the mural paper.
“We could have stayed home and done nothing,” I reminded Anna. “And Mommy wouldn’t have needed to get out of her pajamas for that.” Anna remained unmoved. Did Anna want to make a snowman to hang on the fridge? What are you, new?
“What do you want to do?” I asked her. Radio silence. “Do you want to paint?” I get the hairy eyeball. “Do you want to go home and see Mary?”
“Do you…want to go to Target?” (What? I have errands to do and I am not about to waste a morning out sans 2/3 of my offspring.)
“Yes! Yes! Oh Target!” And with that she ran over, gave Miss Stacie a huge, cuddly, lingering hug and said goodbye.
Okay. I asked again if she wanted to stay, maybe do a little painting, make herself a snowman. She looked at me as though I asked her if she’d like to submerge herself in boiling oil.
So we went to Target but didn’t stay very long because holiday stock was at 70 percent off and the place was a zoo. I like discount Christmas cards as much as the next girl but not enough to throw elbows. Also, spoiler alert? Brown reindeer Peeps look anything but festive. I tried to look at wrapping paper and ornaments, many of ours having been sacrificed to the gods of toddlers and cats over this joyous Christmas season, but the other people gave me looks that suggested I’d lose a limb as soon as do a price check. Anna was cheerful as she said goodbye to all and sundry as we abandoned our cart by the door, headed into the parking lot and buckled in for the trip home.
“That was fun, wasn’t it, Anna?”
“Where Miss Stacie?”
“Miss Stacie is at school, Anna.”
“Are we going to art class now?”
“Art class is over, Anna.”
“Aw, MAN! Wanna go art class!”
Sigh…the course of true love never did run smooth.