And another…

            We have been remarkably fortunate, J and I.  Zachary, at three-and-a-half, is just now giving up his afternoon nap.  We have retained this last perk of babyhood much longer than so many other parents who we know.  But now, about half the time, he forgoes his afternoon nap to play quietly with his toys (while his brother and I are completely conked out, of course.)  On the days he does not nap, he turns into a pumpkin round about 5:00 PM.  With almost three hours left till bedtime, we find ourselves trying to detour his tantrums and ignore his whines, usually to only minimal effect. 

            So it was, on Sunday, that he began to get irrational (even for a three-and-a-half-year-old) during our trip to the mall.  We had planned on grabbing some pizza in a nearby neighborhood (where we hope to be moving soon), and it was only the threat of going home instead that kept the whine-o-meter registering at a barely acceptable four.  But, when the restaurant manager came over after the meal to inform us that they no longer carried the dessert he had ordered (why the hell was it still on the menu?), the shit was dangerously close to the fan.

            Only the promise of finding an ice cream place kept the seams together.  We quickly drove up to the local frozen yogurt shop, a place we have been informed we will patronize regularly once we move into the neighborhood.  When I tried to tell him the options on the menu, his exhaustion overwhelmed him.  “You choose for me, Mommy.”  At the last moment he rallied, choosing vanilla with chocolate sprinkles.

            We sat at a table, and the line snaked past us, people smiling as they watched Benjamin ignore his frozen yogurt in favor of the blueberries on the top and Zachary ignore his frozen yogurt in favor of the chocolate sauce on ours.  Only near the end, when Zach had gotten down and was exploring the gumball machines, did Benjamin begin a foray into chocolate sprinkles.  J went over to explain a little game machine to Zachary, while Benjamin sat with a spoon in each hand, alternately sampling his own topping and his brother’s.

            Suddenly, Zach began to wail.  J brought him back, tears streaming down his little face.  His father had cruelly informed him that he could not, in fact, play the “game” that was really a gumball machine in disguise.  It was over.  We had gone into battle, and the exhaustion had won.  J took the sobbing child outside while Benjamin continued his adventures in ice cream toppings.

            Finally, aware that the chocolate sprinkle/blueberry escapade could take another hour or so, I simply declared the session over and made a feeble attempt at wiping down our table.  We walked outside; J, seeing us coming, went to put a shrieking Zachary into the car.  Benjamin, meanwhile, had the drunken toddler walk of a twenty-one-month-old who has just had a close encounter with a frozen dessert.  His face was smeared with frozen yogurt, and he smiled at the universe that created the double wonders of chocolate sprinkles and blueberries as he giggled and walked towards the car.

            Walking towards us was a disconcertingly handsome man, but that was not what I noticed first about him.  Like any mother, I noticed first the smothered smile he wore upon seeing Benjamin in his clearly euphoric state.  And, as we turned to get into the car, Zachary’s wails clearly audible from the other side of the car, I smiled back at him.  “The two boys left the ice cream shop in slightly different moods.”

            He smiled a bit and kept walking.  And, I know my husband will forgive me when I tell you that it was hard not to notice that, in real life, Jason Bateman is even hotter than he is on television. 

            I have decided that watching Jason Bateman walk away is definitely one of the selling points for living in L.A.

24 responses to “And another…

  1. Oooh. Jason Bateman AND frozen desserts. That sounds like my kind of night! 😉

  2. Best part? You were the parent with the cherubic smiler rather than the one trying to wrestle the tantrumer into submission.

  3. Why o why did they cancel Arrested Development? I LOVED that show so much.

    I am so jealous that you saw him!!! And he smiled at you!!!!!! MMMMMMMmmmmm good.

  4. Jealous! Jealous!

    Over here…well, I see a lot of German people. And soldiers. A few days ago, at the post office, a colonel held open a door from me. That’s as close to celebrity as I get. 🙂

  5. oh my, oh my.

  6. I only wish my non-nap evenings with Calvin ended so well…Jason Bateman. Lovely! You definitely have to move to that neighborhood.

    I’m empathizing with you on the transition to naplessness. One good thing about the dropped nap in this household has been that C sleeps much longer at night, conking out at 7 and not waking until 12 or 13 hours later. The fussy evenings are worth that!

  7. I had to google him as I didn’t know who he was, but goodness me, seriously pretty!! Worth it for the tantrum, then 😉

  8. pardon me while I drool over Jason Bateman, vicariously

  9. Oh very cool! Maybe he’ll frequent your same ice cream shop!

  10. Jason Bateman …….

    What were you talking about again?

  11. Oh my goodness! What a surprise twist there at the end! That is too funny…

    BTW, I totally know that 21 month old frozen-dessert-drunken look. Oh, and the no-nap 5pm meltdown too….

  12. i’m still stuck on “plays quietly by himself”

    🙂

  13. I have been in love with him since I was about 5.
    I would have peed on myself a little bit.
    especially since giving birth.

  14. Oh, that’s a great sighting. That’s better than chocolate sauce.

    Methinks you will be going there a lot when you move to that neighborhood. Yum. 🙂

  15. Having just watched Juno, I can tell you that looking at Jason Bateman was the only thing that kept me from flinging the DVD into the trash. I am quite jealous ; )

  16. I’m so sad – emerging from my relative lurkdom to gush about my jealousy surrounding your Jason Bateman sighting. Lucky, lucky you. Although, if I saw him it would just make me sad over the whole Arrested Development thing. I’d get over it eventually thanks to the power of the hotness.

  17. Huh. I don’t think I’ve even heard of him…

  18. Jealous! Jason Bateman is better than chocolate sauce on frozen yogurt.

  19. David is 4 an still naps some days. I love that.

  20. So, it sounds like the whole episode was worth it 😉 I am right here with you on the nap thing. My almost three demon child has gone to bed at 6:30 that last two nights. No nap, early to bed.

  21. I love reading about your boys.

    And I’m glad to hear that you are finding some perks to being in LA.

  22. Ice cream. Chocolate sauce. Jason Bateman.

    I’m sorry – were there other characters in this story?

    *grin*