Sunday, December 28, 2008

Lights, Camera, Tantrum

We went to the holiday lights show at our local nature center tonight. I wish someone had reminded me to re-read last year's post about the light show wherein I detailed Sam's ill behavior. Next year we're getting him a babysitter.

I don't know why I can't remember that Sam really needs to be prepped before activities like this. We really needed to sit him down before we got out of the car to tell him that we would be walking through the lights for a good amount of time, that we expected good, compliant behavior from him, and that if he was well-behaved he would get hot chocolate.

With Sam, it really only takes that much. (Usually.)

What really happened is that Sam was happy for a few minutes then started whining about wanting to go home. Then, because it was a warm night, he wanted someone to carry his coat. Then he wanted to go home. Then he was bored. Then he didn't want to go that direction. Then he wanted to go home. Then he was mad at me because I finally carried through on my "if you don't behave better, you're not going to be able to play any video games tomorrow" threat. Then he wanted to go home. Then he was mad at me because I didn't agree with his "if I can't play video games tomorrow, then Jack and Quinn can't play video games tomorrow either" theory.

Sam before it all went bad.

We had a different kind of trouble with Quinn. As mentioned, it was unseasonably warm today, which is one of the reasons we went tonight. Because it was so warm (and also because Alex took the little dudes swimming today), Quinn was wearing flipflops. Which wasn't a good idea because, well, because he's three, and three-year-olds aren't good at wearing flipflops—especially oversized flipflops that belong to their older brother.

As with Sam, things were okay for a while.

Fox made out of lights?! Woofy goodness!

Then Alex led us up a dark set of stairs to nowhere. Really. They ended in a grassy field. And because they went nowhere, there were no lights nearby. Quinn and I were following everyone else up the stairs when he told me he'd lost his shoe. Alex and group continued walking. He'd lost the shoe about 16 times before this, so I was sure we'd find it immediately.

Not so.

Quinn and I tried to find his shoe, to no avail. Honestly, I cannot figure out where it went. I used my camera flash to make light to find it, I looked all over the path ten feet in each direction, I felt around inside the bush he claimed it flew into.

No shoe.

Eventually I gave up and tracked down the rest of my semi-belligerent family. Things worked out okay for Quinn though.

Notice, no shoes.
Also notice surly Sam.

Fortunately, per usual, and sort of ironically, Jack was the least problematic of everyone.

Although once that bear gets going,
it might cause Jack some problems.

So there you are. And seriously, come next December, please remind me that the light show is nothing but trouble for Team Stimey.


  1. Okay, I'm marking my calendar to wrte you a reminder email next year!

    Sorry it was less than stellar. :-(

  2. I'm trying to be sympathetic, but seriously I'm just glad other people have family outings like us!

  3. LOL! And this year we actually got to go!

    And I was wearing 'flip flops' (we call them thongs).

    Would a social story help?

    For you. In your Christmas decorations box 'I must remember to word Sam up about what we are doing when going to see the lights. When I do this everyone is happy. And then I am proud of myself'


  4. We almost went to that last night too! I would totally have helped you find that flip flop. And I would have some surly companions for Sam, I'm sure!

  5. We have places and events that I insist on going to year after year that Andy always says "The kids hate this. Why are we here?" And every year, he's right.

    Glad Jack had a good time.

  6. Hahah, the photo of Quinn by the bush caused me to laugh so hard, tea came out my nose.

    Thank you:)

  7. I can't decide which is funniest: that Quinn wore flip flops, that he lost one, or that you went rooting through the bush where he claimed it went!

    And I'm glad to know it's not just my family that has the kid that can be surly and ill behaved at stuff like this.

  8. Well next time - tell us BEFORE you go!

  9. We're obsessed with lights (we meaning Oliver, George and Eleanor). But I agree - activities that involve 3 children walking around and "looking at things" rarely turn out well.

  10. Hey - we were there this weekend!!! Did you notice that they've replaced a lot of the lights with LEDs? That must have cost them a pretty penny.


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