Yesterday, the girls and I ventured out to the library to return some overdue books, and also to peruse the wonders there. Because it was such a pleasant experience for me, I thought I would share it with you, in case you needed some ideas for your next outing.
Upon arrival, I reminded the girls to whisper in the library and stay next to me. And so we entered; I was holding one book to return, and Amaleah was holding the other. I dropped mine into the drop slot and let her drop hers. Julia then forgets to whisper and instead whimpers and whines about how she wanted to drop a book in. "Next time, honey, next time."
Off to the children's section. Plop down, read a good book or two, and then let the children do the picking while I wander over to the Level 1 readers. As I browse, my arms are already a bit full (I forgot a bag), and Julia comes to me and asks for gum. Typical. I say, "No, if you stay dry then you can a have a piece of gum during Amaleah's ballet this afternoon." Once again, gone is the whispering, bring on the yelling. Tears, screams, stomps, "Hold me!", "I want GUM!" "No, I will not hold you while you are throwing a fit." (Oh, and meanwhile, a little family has arrived with a baby and a little girl, and I would be remiss if I forgot to say that at this point she was definitely steering her children away from mine, I'm sure thinking, "Bad influence; hasn't that child been taught how to behave?" I've totally thought that before, so that's how I know...)
Next, the nosy (or kind, you pick) librarian comes over and says to Julia, "Are you having a bad day? Here, why don't you look at this book, it's my favorite." And Julia frowns, shakes her head no, but surprisingly stops crying and goes back to the children's section. Same librarian says to me, "Is it nap time, or lunchtime?" (Have I mentioned that at this point I'm feeling no sympathy for Julia, annoyance with the librarian, and eagerness to leave). I reply, "Neither, just disobedient time." She walks away.
Only a few more books, over to the videos and read a-longs..."Julia, you may not pull out the videos, put them back, and look with your eyes only." "AGHHHHH! I don't want to look with my eyes, I want to touch!" Back are the tears and stomps. I try to lower myself without falling, and calmly look into her eyes and correct her, and in my peripheral vision I see the same librarian peeking around the corner. At that point I'm really thankful I'm not beating my child (not that I would ever do that), although I'm sure that's what she thought I was doing because apparently that or the other two aforementioned reasons are the only explanation for a screaming toddler.
Okay, we're leaving. Check out the books. Man behind me hands me a plastic bag that I already said I didn't need, I toss some books in it to make him happy, and rush to the car. The rest is between me and my children...