On Saturday night, Carl and I dedicated the evening to an "All About Carson" sort of evening. We were Cedar Falls bound, and we were headed to the Bounce House.
I was so excited to see what Carson thought of the different activities. Last Summer, he loved the bounce house that was at the Petting Zoo we brought him to, so I figured he would have a blast.
We got there, and his personality kicked right in.......in full gear. There were a bunch of 'bigger' kids running around, and he clung to us. He didn't want to play, be put down, jump in the bouncers.....nothing. So, we had to do a little coaxing. We contemplated leaving, but decided to wait it out, and I am so glad we did.
Carl finally got Carson to take his shoes off, and put him in the 'little' bouncer. He put him in there, and tried to make Carson bounce around by movements with his hands on the floor of the bouncer. Carson had his shy grin plastered across his face, and I was hoping he would loosen up a bit more.
After Carl got him to bounce around, Carson started jumping on his own. He finally figured out that......hey, this is a lot of fun! After that, the rest is history.
Carson ran around that place, from one bounce house to the next, down one slide, up another set of stairs, for 1-1/2 hours solid! I don't think he slowed down for anything. He was so brave when the big kids got in the bounce houses with him, and he stood his ground.....even though he looked so super tiny compared to them. He tried to run with the big kids and go down the super big slide, but finally his gut feeling kicked in, and he traced back to the other slides and jumpers. I was not opposed to his decision.
He played really well with the other little strangers, and really took to a steep slide that frightened the day-lights out of him the first time he went down it. After he figured out that it was a big thrill, he went back for more. And more.
Here is a video of Carson going down the slide.
Carl and I spectated for most of the night. We assisted him a few times, and followed him wherever he went. But for the most part, he was on his own.
Carl and I had so much fun watching our little Wee Lad have a blast! We are still talking about it....to this day. We are constantly looking at pictures, and the video of him going down the slide. There is something about a proud "Look at Mommy!" or "Look at Daddy!" coming for a tiny little voice that gets me every time. He is so sweet, and his little giggle is constantly running through my head. I think that is what gets me through my work days......especially these days :)
We are so glad that we finally decided to take him to the bounce house, as we have been talking about it for quite some time. And, of course it never fails......he fought us to play when we got there, and fought us to leave when it was time to go. But, that's ok. That is just another indicator to us that he was having so much fun. He was so nice to the other kids up until it was time to go. Out of the corner of my eye I caught Carson hitting another little boy, and that was our cue to go. I went and scooped him up from the jumper, and scolded him for not being nice. It was perfect timing, really. He got in trouble, and the consequence was us having to leave....even though we were getting ready to leave anyway. (He doesn't need to know that detail. Ha.)
After Carson was all bounced out, and pretty much exhausted, we decided to take him out to eat. In the back of my head I thought it was going to be a disaster because he was so tired, but it turns out I was wrong! We met Frannie and Grandpa Gary out to eat, and Carson was so good for us. I feel like meals out to eat are so much more enjoyable when Carson behaves.....which only makes sense, right?!
At the restaurant, they had a machine game that you can win stuffed animals out of. Ya know, the ones with the claw, that pretty much is a waste of money? The ones where you can grab something every time, but the machine is programed to do one final 'jerk' of motion to make whatever you were holding in the claws drop? Ya know, the ones that get the kids begging for more money because "I had an animal, and I am going to get it this time, I swear!".....? Yeah, that one. Well, Carl decided to let Carson play it. Why? I have no idea....other than my husband is just as much of a little kid as our little Wee Lad.
They were playing their first dollar worth of money, and I hear "We won!" come from the machine. I didn't really believe him, but sure enough....Carson came walking over to the table with an ugly tie-died rat looking thing. The look on both of their faces was priceless. They both looked so proud. Carl said Carson maneuvered the stick all by himself, and hit the button to drop the claw, and won something!
After supper, Carl was asking for more money to play again. Yes, Carl was asking me for more money, because he doesn't ever carry any cash with him. And no, Carson wasn't the one asking....it was Carl! Haha.
I don't even remember how much money they burned through. I think they got another dollar or so worth of quarters from me, many quarters from Frannie, a dollar from Grandpa. Grandpa even took Carson over to the machine, and played 2 rounds with him. After no luck with another stuffed animal, Grandpa handed the torch back over to Daddy. Who, was standing by the table asking for more money. Because, "Carson was asking to play more..." Yeah, right :)
Frannie was just as much of a sucker as Daddy was...it turns out. She continuously reached for her purse, digging for 2 more quarters after Carl and Carson would get sooo close to winning this big orange bear. (Or so I think it's a bear) That was the prize they were working so hard to get.
I finally handed over my one and only dollar I had in my wallet. I went to the restroom, and came back out to Carson holding the orange bear! Oh gosh, the look in his eyes was to die for. I got a "Look at Mommy!" and it was too cute. I guess it was all worth it...in the end.
We have tried to figure out how much this bear costs us, but haven't really figured it out. Regardless, Carl continues to say it was all worth it after he heard Carson shriek from excitement as the bear dropped into the hole. Carson held on to that dear bear and rat for dear life. He slept with it that night, he rode along in his car with him, and he is still clinging tight to it. Carl continues to remind me that..."WE won that bear together, and that is why he loves it so much, and won't let it go." Ok, honey. Whatever you say :)