They had just left the house and were headed to Chick-Fil-A, one of the favorite restaurants of the children. I’m fond of their market salad as well so I said I’d meet them there. It was lunchtime on Friday and this particular restaurant is close to the hospital and always full.
I didn’t see my husband’s car but since I couldn’t find a spot either I parked in the grocery store lot. Inside the restaurant I found them in a corner, just beside the edge of the food ordering counter. I quickly ordered my meal and say between my children, listening to what they’d been doing with Mimi while I’d been having my breast tissue scanned for signs of abnormal growth.
One of the things about Chick-Fil-A’s kid’s meals is that the toy/book/game included with the meal can be kept and used or it can be turned in unopened for a child’s ice cream. Without fail, our children are more interested in the ice cream. This time I told them to walk to the counter’s edge and hold their toy bag out. I said the staff would know what they were there for and would ask them if they wanted a cup or a cone and they could tell them.
Sure enough a nice lady came up to the children and asked if they would like some ice cream. They said they did. She then said would they like to do something very special and come behind the counter and make their own ice cream cone?
Yes, they would like to do that. Yes, they were very excited. They made their cones and came back all smiles to the table. And then, perhaps because they had been empowered with the whole making their own cones thing, they branched out, trying new things, tempting ice cream catastrophe.
My son ate the bottom clean off his cone, saying his cone had “two tops”. His sister poked her finger into the cone at various locations, making it look like one of those cactus planters. I was wary ice cream would be everywhere except in their mouths.
But they’re older, which in this case mostly means they’re faster, and when you’re faster at eating ice cream, you can beat a melted ice cream mess with sheer speed.
The Big Boy Update: My son got lost today. He was up in fifteen minutes for his music lesson at the house and then he was just gone. We looked for him, messaged neighbors, rang the gong and nothing until we realized one of the neighbors had gotten a new dog. Excitement of a new dog is a good enough excuse to forget your music lesson is about to start.
The Tiny Girl Chronicles: In Detroit we were sitting on the third floor of the mall, finishing our dinner. I had forgotten to bring my daughter’s pennies for the fountain so I hedged, and said to her, “I’m not sure the fountain is on right now.” She sat up, got quiet and said, “shhh…” Then she said, “yep, the fountains are on; I can hear them.” And she was right, if I stopped to listen, I could hear them too.