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The Field Trip

I’ve been very open over the last few years about some of the issues we’ve faced with Jensen.  Especially the little matter that involved him screaming whenever we went anywhere in public.

Which always made for some fun blog fodder during the weekly grocery shopping trip.

I’m so relieved to tell you that the situation has improved dramatically since he turned 4.  We occasionally still deal with impromptu public nudity, but other than that, we generally can venture out into the open without too much incident.


He’s still a handful, mind you.  I have to keep him on a short leash (figuratively).  And just so you know, yes, I have considered one of those child harnessy things.  But we all know that he could easily catch me off guard and use it to tie me to a street light.

He also still has the pesky habit of TALKING IN ALL CAPS.  And you never really know what’s going to come out of him.  Which is always an exciting prospect at church and such.

Today we piled into the van for a homeschool field trip to Chick Fil-A.  The plan was to have playtime on the indoor play equipment, tour the facility, and then eat lunch with other homeschooling friends.

This all sounded harmless enough.

What could happen?

The playtime was quite fun.  Jensen even had time to fall head over heals for a little tiny girl.  When she exited the playground, he made his intentions public by yelling after her, “HEY, DON’T LEAVE, I LOVE YOU!”

I need to have that little talk with him about playing hard to get.  Or hard to keep.  Or whatever.


Right on, baby boy.

Then it was time for our group to take the tour of the kitchen.  I was particularly excited about this prospect.  Because I’ve heard that Chick Fil-A runs a first rate kitchen, and frankly I could use some pointers.  Like where is the best place to store the fire extinguishers and other useful information.

I gave Jensen the little talk about staying right with me and exhibiting his most polite behavior by not interrupting our tour guide.

About 35 seconds into the tour, Jensen announced to everyone within a 1 mile radius of the building, “I’M BORED!”  And the shooshing I aimed at him only served to make him louder, MOMMY, I’M BOOOORRRRDDD.”

And so I whisked him away.  Back to the playground.  And let my girls continue on the tour.

Lunch with Jensen was hectic, and then keeping track of him afterward with the lunch crowd and all the kids took a herculean effort.  Translated, I just held onto his arm.  With all the strength I could muster.

At one point, I was engaged in conversation with a fellow harried mom.  I was hanging onto Jensen with my left hand.  He managed to wriggle away from me for a moment, yet without losing my train of conversational thought, I saw him in my peripheral vision, and reached out and caught him up in the death grip.  While continuing the discussion with my friend.

I noticed that he was really straining against me, so I turned to give him the stink eye.

I found myself looking into the very confused face of a little boy that was not Jensen.  Horrified, I released him and apologized profusely.  He stood rubbing his wrist, still looking up at me puzzled.

In my defense, he is the same size as Jensen, and was wearing the same color shirt. Fortunately, it was his mother I was talking to and when she realized what had happened she laughed it off saying, “oh, he’s use to it.”

SHOUT OUT TO STACEY!  It’s so comforting to have friends that sail around in the same sinking boat with you.

I turned to see Jensen across the restaurant, frolicking with his boy cousins.

Our next planned field trip is the Kennedy Space Center.

I look forward to it with some trepidation.

The entire future of the space program could be in jeopardy.


15 Responses to The Field Trip

  • What is it with the 4-year-olds? My little Princess unpanted this afternoon and exposed her fanny to the neighbor boy. I can only imagine what he told his mother (who is not too fond of me in the first place – long story, not my fault). The girl and I had yet another long conversation about keeping our privates private. (Lord, let her remember this when she’s a teenager on spring break!)

    Good luck at the space center (giggle, giggle!)!

  • Emma also talks in all caps, usually with a microphone, cane and top hat handy…

    I’m glad things are getting better, though!

  • Oh boy! My youngest son (of 4 sons) is 3 and is the same way. He is PDD so he screams more than talks which is oh so much fun at church, Wal Mart, goodness even a staduim is not loud enough to cover his screams! LOL
    The anti-gravity room should be fun!
    God bless

  • All I have to say is…just you wait. I am the mom to 3 teens. 2 boys, 1 girl. Half the time they are very sweet and loving….eternally grateful that I birthed/raised them. The other half the time they look at me like I’m a foreigner…either that or they act like they have amnesia–and who am I anyway??? Mom, who?
    On really bad (obnoxious) days I threaten to leave them in the electronics dept. at Wmart. Thing is they are all old enough that they’d find me….track me down…there is no escape.

  • I just started reading your website, so this is the first I have heard of Jensen. Mine is 2, and we were hoping things would improve upon turning 3. The other week at church a woman sang a solo during the offertory. During the deathly silent moment after the solo and before the prayer, my son looked at Daddy and said “WEIRD”. My other children of course erupted into laughter, which they tried to control, and I hoped the prayer would start soon.

  • THe Space Center….Houston, we have a problem.

    One small leap for man, one giant leap for Jensen…….

  • Oh DeeDee! Your blogs always brighten my crazy days! My little guy never even mentioned the incident to me, so no harm done on our end….he really is used to it! Could you imagine if he actually did what our Stranger Safety DVD recommends and looked up at you and screamed…”YOU ARE NOT MY MOMMY” before yanking himself away. Guess they need a refresher on that! 🙂 I am loving the expression Talking in All Caps because my little Jake has done that from day 1…may be my new catch phrase! 🙂 I truly enjoyed my little conversation with Jensen yesterday by the way! He is a cutie!

  • I totally barked at someone else’s kid the other day. We were at the train stop and this boy was wearing an orange shirt just like my boys and blah blah blah. Not only did I Bark Like A Mom at the wrong kid, but then I saw his mom standing behind him–and she was legally blind. So I was scoring major points in the Offend Someone Today contest.

  • LMBO….my tanner also talks in all caps. took them to visit a friends church back in early feb after the ice storms and just before the final invitation when we are praying at the TOP of his lungs he says….
    no microphone necessary the church ERUPTED in laughter
    ran into my best friend after her service…she didnt know we were there before Tanner had hollered out…said she turned to her Chris and said Steffs here.

    Yep even other moms can recognize my childs voice in a church the size of the astrodome.

  • I once snatched up a child as he ran by, sat him on a bench and handed him a bag of food before I figured out it wasn’t mine. His mom just stood there looking confused, but the kid started eating! I was SO embarrassed! Then my son ran up and hugged her legs, and wiped his nose on her knee, making things that much more surreal. I apologized profusely, gave her kid back, and grabbed mine. I think it was her only child, because she didn’t even crack a smile, and my friend was on the floor in hysterics, and said she wished she’d brought a video camera.

  • While I suspect that the Kennedy Space Center will be more interesting to Jensen than the first-rate kitchen at Chick-Fil-A, I hope for your sake that they have a handy playground.

    PS-I adore Jensen.

  • Oh sure, who doesn’t have trouble with occasional nudity?

  • I have a feeling that little boy is used to being mistaken for another little boy, but at least that is in the same family! You crack me up! I could just see it all take place in my minds eye- made me wish I was there!

  • Well, he did Rowan one better. She’s just getting a dog when she gets big enough. Thankfully I haven’t heard much about babies yet!

  • Heh – I remember one summer I was wearing similar shorts to my cousin’s best friend, except that hers had a lacy frill around the legs. We had similar builds and same hairstyles / colours. We were getting up to mischief (I think giggling over my uncle’s anatomy book actually) when my mom came over and yanked on the friends shorts. “Where did this frill come from?” She asked.

    I almost died 🙂 Moms are supposed to be able to tell their kids apart from some stranger… I’m just waiting for the day that I do exactly the same thing!