From the moment we arrived at the resort Jack began to fret about hitting the hill, asking all sorts of questions. On the morning of the scheduled event we discovered that the minions would be the minimal height to participate in this winter activity, but just barely (I'm talking that if someone was slouching even slightly, they wouldn't be allowed to participate).
I sent Chris out to do some recon with the older cousins and talk to the people working the hill to find out what age most kids are before they jump on a giant inflatable donut and hurl themselves down the hill. Chris called me from the base of the hill to let me know that most kids are five or six, but usually six before they conquer a hill like this, but we were welcome to try. Chris and I thought about the minimal price for this experiment, where both kids would need to commit to going down the hill solo. I asked Jack, and he flat out told me that he would only do this if he could ride in Dad's lap. Decision made - this adventure stopped before it even began. We may have given it a gamble had the minions successfully tobogganed earlier this year, but there hasn't been enough snow (not that I am complaining).
The older kids and adults spent two hours tearing down the hill and had a blast. I stayed back with Molly and Jack and we watched a movie together instead, but I still worried about them feeling left out. The cousins came back and we all had hot chocolate, lunch, and then went swimming at an indoor outdoor pool together.
Jackie enjoying a mid-winter swim
It wasn't even until the morning we were leaving that Molly enquired about the tubing, "I thought we were going to go down a snowy hill in a giant donut?" she asked. Chris and I explained to her that she wasn't quite big enough yet, and probably next year. She shrugged, "This weekend was sooo much fun! Can we go back again next year?" And that was it. I couldn't believe it!
This week I made special arrangements for Molly and I to go to a family yoga class together, I had my parents pick up Jack from his after school program early and got myself ready for some quality mother daughter time with my girl. I looked up the schedule and location of the studio before I went to pick up Miss Molly only to realize that I had mixed up the days of the classes. There was no family yoga and I had messed up.
When I arrived to get Molly she jumped into my arms and announced that we were going to yoga class together as a special treat. I cringed. We got to the car and I explained how I screwed up and that we'd go together next week. I apologized, profusely and asked her if she wanted to go and get some flowers from the grocery store as a peace offering. She was gracious, she was kind, and understanding. She smiled and touched my arm, "It's okay mommy. It was an accident."
As we rounded the corner at the grocer I saw the empty bins where the flowers were supposed to be. Son of a b&#$h! I pointed to where the flowers were supposed to be and asked Molly if she wanted some Smarties instead. She happily agreed.
I have been bracing myself to deal with managing disappointment and the minions, but really it's been about managing my own expectations. They are just happy to be given time, and memories, and do something unusual or get some undivided attention.
I am both a worrier and someone who has been known to work events up in my head with expectations that can't possibly be met. Maybe it's time to take a lesson in chill and gratitude from a pair of four year olds. There's plenty of time for them to be zipping down a hill solo. Right now I'm going to enjoy that they want to sit in our laps, snuggle and eat Smarties, cause what could be better then that? Not much.
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