Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Team Stimey’s Egg-cellent Adventure

Warning: Lots of egg puns ahead. Sorry.

This year, like every year, I had come to terms with the fact that Team Stimey was doomed to another year of celebrating Easter only with our regular family backyard Easter egg hunt on Sunday. (Jack found a 19th egg on Tuesday; where do you think that came from?) Then, on Friday, I got great news from my friend MCM Mama*, who introduced me to the lovely folks from Honest Tea, who had all-day passes to the White House Easter Egg Roll for my whole family.

I was so excited. I love big DC events. I mean, I knew it was likely to be a Team Stimey freakout fest, but with us, what isn’t?

Sure enough, on the way there, Jack was all, “I think I’m going to be sick,” and so we opened a lot of windows and then Quinn was all, “I am freezing!” so we rolled up most of the windows and then I suggested that we pull over, and Alex, who was driving us in the morning rush hour traffic, was all, “SERENITY NOW!”

Naturally, we walked almost entirely around the perimeter of the White House grounds in an effort to find the right entrance. During this long walk, both Alex and Quinn became increasingly disgruntled.

This was at the beginning of said walk before that smile disappeared from Quinn’s face entirely. I, however, kept that giddy grin the whole stupid time.
By the time we actually got past security, Quinn was not happy…until he met the most fun squirrel in the history of fun squirrels.

Quinn got within a couple of inches of this guy. Me: “Oh good. It’s rabid.”
He chattered happily about that squirrel right until we walked into the crowds and the chaos and the many characters wandering around. Me on the other hand? I was delighted. Especially when Smokey the Bear AND Woodsy Owl walked by together—it was like the holy grail of good samaritan animal costume characters.

I forced Jack to stand with me because it seemed more legitimate to pose with them if I had a kid with me.
I called, “Give a hoot!” after them as they departed. I don’t think anyone heard me. That’s probably for the best.
We decided to start with the egg roll, because, well the name of the event is the Easter Egg Roll and also because all of my kids were too old for the Easter Egg Hunt. There were dozens of reporters there with their cameras trained on the egg roll course. I was already imagining the local evening news with its footage of cute toddlers in Easter dresses rolling their eggs along with wooden spoons, followed by a shot of Quinn rolling on the grass and screaming as the anchor fake sympathized, “Aw, this little boy didn’t have much fun!”
I haven’t seen any such footage. Please don’t tell me if it exists.

Sam, however, rocked his egg roll race against all those toddlers in their cute Easter clothes.
From there, it was over to the Eggtivity Zone where there were several different obstacle courses. Quinn had entirely checked out by this point and was playing Angry Birds on my iPhone, but Sam and Jack went through the obstacle courses several times.

Some properly and according to the rules…
…and some not.
Mid-obstacle race, the president and his family and the Easter Bunny showed up to greet Team Stimey…and the other folks in attendance. I guess.

Someday I am actually going to get a close up photo of that man.
Team Obama headed down to the egg roll area and Team Stimey headed off on an ultimately unsuccessful trek to find the people from Honest Tea to find some juice and say thank you. In a happy cowinkidink, we ended up penned in by hastily erected fences as the Obamas were headed off to various places on the lawn—the president to the tennis and basketball courts and the first lady to the healthy food section.

We might have gotten all up in Michelle’s face. Algernon took this opportunity to get reacquainted with Mrs. Obama.

Take note of the concerned looking lady in the mirrored sunglasses.
There is nothing I won’t do for you people.

That was pretty cool, right? Well. It got even cooler just after that. The people right next to us had some sort of photos from their school that they were forcing on Mrs. Obama and they told her where they went to school. She started to move on when Jack piped up with, “I go to ****** Elementary School!”

She stopped, turned around and came back asking, “Are you doing good there? Are you getting good grades?” Jack told her yes and then she told him, “Keep up the good work, babe,” and then she touched both Sam and Jack on their heads and I may or may not have started jumping up and down.

Jack and Sam, pre-conversation.
I don’t know why it is so exciting that she talked to my kids, but it was. Also, I love that Jack totally dragged her attention back. That kid has some sort of magnetic charisma. It is close to impossible to walk away from his awesome little face when he is is telling you something. Even the FLOTUS wasn’t immune.

Jack and the FLOTUS’ magic touch.
After that, it was just a matter of killing time and making jokes about unjust imprisonment as we waited for the president to finish playing sports so security could remove the fence between us and the exit.

Sam killed time by being his normal charming self. Algernon is going to need a bath.
Quinn killed time by collapsing to the ground again. I’m making a collection of these photos. (Luray Caverns? Check! The White House? Check!)
Jack killed time by learning—and then by using that magnifying glass and the sun to try to set some lady on fire.

Soon enough though the president headed back to the White House and we were free from our egg-citing adventure.

This photo is a *little* closer.
We headed out and collected our souvenir Easter eggs, which were passed out along with Peeps, M&Ms, and goldfish crackers. This was Quinn’s favorite part of the egg-venture.

You can see Alex and Quinn up there on the left. I felt I should point out that they were there as they didn’t figure prominently in this post.
From there, Alex headed back to work (sad) and the rest of us headed home to collapse on the couch (happy). I know that we’ll probably never go back to the egg roll now that we’ve done it once, but I am so happy that we got to experience it. Thank you so much, Honest Tea!
* MCM Mama just ran five half marathons in five different states in five days. She is a rock star. You should totally read her series of posts about those races.

Disclosure: Honest Tea provided my family with tickets to the Easter egg roll, which, although free, we would not have been able to obtain otherwise. A super nice rep for the company also dropped off loads of egg-cellent tea and juice from their line on my porch last weekend.


I wrote an egg-ceptional column at White Knuckle Parenting about why I wanted to go to the egg roll even though I knew it would most likely be a nightmare: Surviving the White House Easter Egg Roll. Check it out!

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