February 16, 2009

Apparently A Kid Can Be A Kid Pretty Much Anywhere

My oldest child turned eight and I've still never set foot in a Chuck E Cheese.

It was Noah's birthday wish to have lunch there today.

And, just so you know, the reason we've never been isn't because we are against it for any reason at all (aside from a little fear due to some horrific tales I only hope are urban legends) but rather that for a long time Noah was on a special diet and we stayed away from places like that until he was better and since then the opportunity to go had not presented itself.

Until now.

I bought hand sanitizer, as suggested.

I prepared my stomach for questionable "pizza."

And I nervously bit my nails.

I planned to blog about the whole experience here, hoping for some eloquently phrased great teachable moment to tie it all up in the last line.

But this morning Noah decided he'd rather go to the mall and eat at the Food Court instead for his birthday lunch and have I told you lately how much I love this boy?

We found out they had this Funflatables play area and headed right there. In a good hour we'd exhausted all their energy to which only corn dogs and lemonade could fix.

Side note- going to the mall on a school holiday REALLY makes you realize that four is a lot of kids if you hadn't noticed it in a while.

There are things that I hope my children someday look back and think of their childhood. I hope that they can be found one day sitting around talking with each other and maybe even arguing a bit because each one thinks that they were my favorite. I hope that they always knew how much their Mommy and Daddy loved and respected each other. And I hope they always knew how much we hoped for them, dreamed for them, and loved them.

And I hope they felt like they didn't miss even one single moment of being a kid.


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35 comments:

  1. This picture of Noah is such a fitting ending to your post. Yes, a kid can be a kid Anywhere! He is such a sweetheart!

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  2. We've been to Charles Fromage several times, usually with b-day parties, and IMO it's a total assault on the senses. The kids don't seem to mind but the adults look like their heads might explode. And YES to the hand sanitizer... The place is a giant petri dish!

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  3. Ahhhh a narrow escape. We loved Mr Cheese's as a kid but only now understand why my mom would cringe and go so pale whenever it was mentioned!

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  4. Oh, that flatable slide looks like so much fun. Much better than Chuck E. Cheese. Can you image the sheer number of children there today? Just the thought frightens me! *shiver*

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  5. It's good you bought that hand sanitizer for Chuck E Cheese, I'm sure it still came in handy after the whole mall thing :)

    Those things you hope and wish for when it comes to your kiddos?

    Totally going to happen. Because you're YOU.

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  6. How fun and Happy Birthday Noah! We ended up at the mall today too with our 4 kids. Thankfully I had hubby with to help out. We were on a quest for a fun day and everywhere we went was closed - so the mall it was.

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  7. What a fun day, fun post! I have the same hopes for mine :) And I get you about Cheese - I've yet to go too :)

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  8. Sounds so fun!!! My Katie is turning 2 on Wednesday ( Can you believe it?!) and I can't seem to figure out if we are just keeping in the excitement at home or run to some fun place with the family.

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  9. ok, that huge slide is in your mall? what? crazytime.

    looks like you all had a great time! I've been to chuck e cheese once and got pneumonia a week later. that will teach a girl!

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  10. Good call Noah!! Chuck E. Cheese is a scary establishment. They serve beer and wine for the adults for a reason!

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  11. You lucked out not having to go to Chuck E Cheese. :)
    So glad he enjoyed his birthday. It certainly looks like a really fun way to spend the day.

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  12. My dad & uncle used to say they should open up a restaurant across the street from Chuck E. Cheese & call it Up-Chucks. Classy, huh?

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  13. Next time you need to take a ride down those slides! They are fun! And fast!

    So glad he had a great day!

    And Chuck E.... Yeah... we're not fans either...

    I'm just picturing a sweaty germ infested ball pit as I type this...

    I need hand sanitizer just thinking of it!

    Stat!

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  14. "And I hope they felt like they didn't miss even one single moment of being a kid." Amen!

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  15. Can you believe he is so old? I bet you still see the baby in him...even though he is growing into a young man.

    Nell

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  16. Great picture -- great kiddo!!!!

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  17. That slide looks like so much fun!

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  18. Happy Birthday to Noah. So glad he changed his mind! ; )

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  19. My middle son just turned 8 and he almost did his party at Chuck E. Cheese's. It's not too bad there at least there is no mess to clean up at home, but the food isn't all that great. Wet ones are the best, I have the kids wash up multiple time! Happy birthday to Noah!

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  20. So glad Noah had a great birthday! And woooohooooo, SCORE for you not having to experience CEC just yet.

    Love the picture!

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  21. That slide makes me wish I were 8 again!! :)

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  22. What a fun place in your mall! I wish I could have seen how you handled four kids in the mall so I could take notes, I get nervous just having the two!

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  23. Wow! That sounds like a great birthday! :)

    And now you are starting to make me nervous about having 4 kids. ;)

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  24. I used to be afraid of Chuck E Cheese because of what I remembered from being a kid and hearing those horrible stories. But the one by our house is really small and really clean and there is no ball pit!!! They get new games in every few months so it isn't always the same games either. But going there makes me realize that 4 is a lot of kids! Glad he had a great birthday!

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  25. For the record: I love Chuck E. Cheese cheese pizza. It's wrong, I know. It's probably not even real pizza--more like synthetic food, but I love it.

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  26. I love that he wanted to go to the Food court!! Happy Birthday to Noah.

    And 4 is NOT a huge family. Just a TINY bit bigger than normal. About the size of an Ivy baby...

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  27. Hope his birthday was a blast! :-)

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  28. I am soooo thankful we don't have one of those here. However, we don't really have anything else, either :/

    Happy birthday Noah!!

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  29. i wish these things for our 4 little ones, too. the part about them never missing out on being a kid is really on my mind lately.

    it takes a lot of intentionality to not just want to stay home and "keep structure" when i think of the logistics of taking the 4 of them out. but, i never regret it as i see their look as they go around the merry go round, or watching them excidedly play together the climbing place.

    are those slides at OUR mall??

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  30. Fun! I've never been to Chuck E. Cheese with my kids either. That is going to change this Friday though. I hope it is better than I expect! :)

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  31. I think we ALL want those things for our children. Sometimes I (and maybe it's wrong) will whisper to each child that they ARE, in fact, my favorite. HEHEHE, but they are...they are each my favorite because I couldn't possibly love 3 such different little people the same way. They amaze me.

    so do you.

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  32. gilr...i feel the same way about that "place" we have a friends b-day party there in about a month and it will be our first trip...i am already thinking of ways to "bubble wrap" jack and protect him from the cooties and all things chuck-e-cheese.

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  33. oh yes....the chuck e cheese paranoia....i had it too...still do....but my main concern is not the germs or the food...it's the idea of even though they stamp each child/guardian in the party with an invisible matching number (visible only by blacklight) to prevent kidnap/escape...that my son with ADHD and a serious urge to hurdle all boundaries would somehow find a way through and around the maze of activities and people and under the turnstile and out the door and over the highway and into the black of night.

    yes i know. but it's a fear i deal with daily. wherever we go. he's usually great but "escape" is always on his mind...how best to find a way around rules and regulations...and since chuck e cheese has very few and i'm supposed to sit there and let him wander around without me right behind him....every single time we go i have a panic attack before we leave and the panic does not leave until hours after i get home.

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  34. We love visiting Funflatables at the mall. Especially during the day when everyone is in school. I have to go in WITH Adlai since he's so little. But he has fun anyway. (-: And it's exercise for me, that's for sure!

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  35. My DH took my nephews to Chuck E Cheese just before we were married. It was his first experience with my nephews as well as babysitting. They were 2 and 4 at the time. There is no easy way to say it... my nephews are hellions and my DH had no idea how to handle them. The trip ended when the stuffed mouse kicked them out! With that experience I don't know if we will ever take our kids there.
    On a side note I have cloth diapering questions... if you have a free moment (hahhahah) drop me a line. I would love your input!

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