Friday, November 20, 2009

The Nanny Diaries

We were all set to pay $89 for a Children's Museum membership until Abby paid $20 to add two nanny passes to their family membership card. So today Augie, Vi, Pa, and I set off on an adventure. The kids go often; we'd been once. The kids know all the ins and outs...they disappear into little rabbit warrens and tunnels and secret passageways. Just when you think they have to come out the way they went in...there's Augie emerging from another spot and running down the corridor.

I knew it was going to be crowded when I saw the full parking ramp...but I didn't know about the three Head Start buses. Man, the place was jammed full and LOUD, and everywhere you went there was a group coming out and another going in. Augie darted between them, and disappeared. More than once. Next time, he's wearing blaze orange. And maybe a pennant attached to the top of his head.

It was fun, nonetheless. Augie and I watched ourselves play rock guitar on TV. Then Vi did, too, but she's got some learning to do about showing off. On the other hand, she's good at makeup. At the face-painting table, I picked up a couple of crayons and drew little whiskers on her, very pale. She picked up a crayon and, knowing far better than I what she was doing, wet it on the sponge and made bright dots on her nose and upper lip.

In a little side room, Augie pulled all of the heavy building-platform-thingies and matching little ramps off the shelves and laid them out on the floor, then walked around being sure to step on each one. Vi played with water toys for a long time. Augie didn't play much there; instead he stood with his hands in the water and kept leaning out over it, clearly longing to dive in. I think he needs to get into a pool again, mom and dad.

The Minnesota wilderness room turned into a big game of Keepaway. I was surprised at how fearless Vi was, scampering into the anthill tunnels in spite of the bigger, louder boys in there. I literally had to drag her out while preventing an 8-year-old from stomping on her in his frenzy to get back into the tunnel. She was not happy or grateful to be saved. Note this; it will be a recurring theme later in her life.

It's a great place to go, everybody gets a good workout, and the two nannies now have a better idea of how to keep tabs on the kids, and where you can let them run while you station yourself at the lone exit. It's all about strategy. Besides, it's not like anybody has ever lost a kid there permanently. I'm sure we would have heard about it.


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