This past weekend we decided to try out the City of Woodinville’s Halloween festivities rather than go to the ward Trunk or Treat. Since they somehow always fall on the same day/time, we decided to forgo the Trunk or Treat and see what the community had to offer. First off, we had to wait in line to get in for quite a while. Sports Clips had a guy in a huge inflatable referee costume right by the entrance that pretty much creeped out most of the younger kids. When we finally got inside, Alice received her wristband, carnival tickets, and a loot bag filled with some goodies (all for the low price of $6 per child). They had quite a bit going on such as pony rides, inflatable bouncy houses, carnival games, a magic show, face painting, and a pumpkin hunt. First we checked out the pumpkins entered in the carving contest—there were like 4 to choose from. Next year I should enter—good odds of winning. Next we headed over to play some carnival games. After winning a few tokens, we took a break to watch the magic show. During the magic show, Alice said she wanted to do something else. Can’t say I blame her, I could barely sit through it myself. Then we headed out to the holding room for the pumpkin hunt for kids ages 4-6. The hunt was held in an open courtyard so we could see all the plastic pumpkins just waiting to be found. I tried explaining to Alice that she needed to gather as many little plastic pumpkins as she could. And if she found a gold pumpkin, she would win the grand prize. When the kids were unleashed, we saw her dash and grab one. So far, so good. I hung back with Roxie, which meant that Jake was in charge of keeping an eye on Alice during the hunt. I didn’t see her until it was over. I spied her way across the courtyard hauling a very large and very real pumpkin/squash. Apparently, she had misunderstood my directions because she didn’t catch that she was supposed to be looking for “plastic” pumpkins. When Jake had finally found her, she had a couple real pumpkins/squash (one a very golden color) and only one plastic pumpkin. She was so busy trying to carry the big ones that she had no more arms to pick up the plastic ones. After Jake explained the rules again and helped her return the real pumpkins, she walked over to me with her head down and said she only got one. My heart dropped—the look on her sad face and the tone in her voice made me want to cry. If you know Alice, she is very rarely down in the dumps. I got a glimpse into the future of how I will feel when other disappointments come into her life—and I HATED it. That part of parenting I could do without. But, she is a trooper and after more carnival games and the highly anticipated face painting (she had requested a butterfly all week) her spirits were back up. She traded in her tokens for some candy/prizes and we went outside to see about pony rides. Surely that would make her forget about the tragic pumpkin hunt. But when we got outside, the lines were out of control. We will definitely do those first next time—if there is a next time. So instead we bribed her with a Happy Meal from Old McDonalds instead of waiting in line. After dinner, we had to stop at Target. She wanted to wear her Cinderella headband inside—sure, why not? As we were driving home after the shopping, I looked at her and wondered where the headband was. She was shocked to realize that it was no longer on her head. The tears rolled and she blubbered about how it was her best headband ever and she missed it. This was definitely the most disappointment and tragedy she had faced in one day. I begged Jake to turn the car around and return to the store. Since he and Alice had been together most of the time in the store, he could back-track the places they had been and find it, right? Of course, he couldn’t find it so he purchased two more for her as replacements. When we got home, she was happy as a clam again. Thank goodness Alice is one of those people who truly loves life and doesn’t let much get her down for too long. If only I could spring back from disappointment so easily. I’m still very much bugged by the whole pumpkin hunt incident…still makes me sad. But, she’s over it.
Disappointment October 28, 2008