I hired a girl to come over once a week to watch the kids so I can get out. She came last week. And she came this past Wednesday.
Last week was fine. This Wednesday, Peter decided he wanted to come with me. I was less than enthusiastic about having his company, but I know very well the determined look that was on his face. Fighting him was not going to help the situation. I tried a different tactic.
"You don't want to come with me, Petey. I'm going to church."
"I want to go to church with you, Mommy." Ah, such sweet devotion. He would walk through fire, or sit quietly in church, for me.
"I'm running errands, Pete. You don't like to run errands."
"I want to run errands with you, Mommy," he insisted in a tone that betrayed his suspicion that I was on the verge of saying no.
Instead, I relented, and welcomed him. Really, a four year old is not as difficult as a two year old, especially if he has my exclusive attention. Besides, if I happily took with with me, perhaps he could see just how boring Mommy's errands were and decide staying home building houses from leaves with his siblings was an infinitely better way to spend the afternoon.
And so we went. First, to the library where we looked only at grownups books since we had gone the day before for kids' books. And then to the dry cleaners, a place devoid of entertainment. Then briefly into a tent in the parking lot that advertised furniture. Nothing interesting there. Then to the PX.
First, we explored the hair product aisle in search of some magic potion that would render his sisters' tangled messes comb-able. And we looked at hairbrushes, since they constantly misplace theirs. Then we looked at lipstick. As I stared at the seemingly endless ocean of color choices, Peter kept busy a few feet away. When I looked over, I realized he was neatening the display. Instead of tubes of lipstick arranged in apparently random order, he had tidied it up and placed all the lipstick to the far left filling each slot before moving to the next column.
We put them back.
I did let him pick some chocolate in the checkout line, provided he share with me. He picked Lindt milk chocolates. Excellent taste.
Then off to a friend's house to return some things. This was the only fun part, and I tried to keep it as brief as possible.
Then to Bed, Bath & Beyond for miscellaneous items, including my own stocking stuffers, which Bill will not be home in time to do. Buying one's own stocking stuffers has certain advantages. I'm pretty sure I'll like what I got.
Finally, off to church for as long as he could bear. OK, as long as I could bear.
Last night at dinner, I cheerfully asked him if we had had fun. He agreed. "And you're coming with me next week, too...right?" I said with enthusiasm.
"No!" he stated, emphatically.
"Aw, come on. It was great. You have to come with me," I insisted.
"No!" he said again.
Success! I thought triumphantly. And then Jenny spoke up.
"I'll go with you," she offered. Uhhh....
"We'll go to church..." I warned.