Friday, October 3, 2008

Date Nights and Scary Faces

Tonight I had the pleasure of going on a date with my sweet husband. Date nights for us, as we realized tonight, are few and far between. Oh, we have plenty of "family dates". I think Thursday nights are some of my favorites. We usually don't have any church activities going on, and we go out and do fun family things together. But not tonight! Oh, no. I told my husband over five days ago that I wanted a date night tonight. Mainly because he had surgery three weeks ago, and our last three weeks have consisted of me draining things and bandaging things that I don't usually see on a daily basis. Scars and such, you know. And we've had my brother's wedding. And we've had revival at church. But no real "us" time. And I claimed it early.

My very gracious parents (Memaw and Papa) watched Abigail for us tonight, which she never minds one bit. She thinks Memaw and Papa's house is pretty much a carnival compared to ours. They don't have just ONE cat, they have THREE. And they don't say "That's enough lotion on your hands", they say, "Here, try five more scents!" And they (well, Papa) go buy chocolate to have in the freezer just because she is coming! And it is just the absolute, most wonderful place any two-and-a-half-almost-three-when-Santa-comes-year-old could ever imagine spending a Friday night.

Paul and I went to dinner at Exotic Thai in Terre Haute. I'm not sure "exotic" was the descriptive word I would choose, but it was a very good dinner. Unfortunately, we have been spoiled by a little place called "Thai Smile" in Muncie which had some of the most delectable food in the genre, so Exotic Thai did not quite reach our level of Thai palettes from the, oh, two Thai restaurants we have been to. But it was good.

Then we saw the movie "Fireproof." Wow. I won't describe the whole movie here, but I think it would be beneficial to any married or engaged couple to see. It is all about saving a marriage before it ends, and it is extremely edifying for believers. We had tears several times through the movie, and were just very pleased overall to see a movie of this level of character and message make it into the mainstream theater.

THEN, we went to one of my favorite places, Coffee Grounds. Paul usually goes there to make me happy, not because it is his first pick for an evening out. But, oh, how I love their iced mochas. Those iced mochas got me through many a morning in college after my 8 a.m. Shakespeare class (YAWN) and through my afternoon slump of one of my Literary Criticism classes. I could have said "Lit Crit" right there, but it would have seemed so college pretentious. Anyway, my college years were filled with gallons of iced mochas from the Coffee Grounds, and I have never found it's equal. So, that was the perfect way to end our evening.

Actually, I guess the perfect way to end our evening is for me to write a blog about it, and Paul to catch up on Season 5 of Smallville from the library.

As for Scary Faces, Abigail has had more than her fair share of exposure the last couple of days to all of the Halloween goodies out and about. At WalMart last night, we pressed every button of every ghoulish thing that cackled, shrieked, raised it's head off it's shoulders, or had glowing eyes. She didn't seem to mind it last night. Then today, we dropped her off at my mom's work on the way to our date. My mom works at an assisted living home, and every hallway was decorated with similar ghostly, skeleton-ly, witch-ly things. Mom said she shied away from some of them. Then when I put her to bed tonight, she told me that there was a witch in her room. I explained to her that witches are pretend and we just see all of the funny ones out for Halloween decorations. I also told her that Cammie, our kitty, would not allow any witch into our house (that may have been a stretch).

Then, she called me back into her room, crying, asking me to remove two little bear toys (Happy Meal toys) and a plastic pink piggy bank and take them to the living room. I asked her why she needed them out of her room, and she said, "Cuz they're so scary." I replied that they were not, and she said, "Uh-huh. Look at their scary faces."

So I grabbed them and showed her that they were just plastic toys and nothing to be scared of. Then I told her that Mommy and Daddy would protect her, and that God always keeps her safe while she sleeps and that she is too brave to be scared of any ol' toy. I think she may have believed me, but she still wanted them out of her room.

If anyone has any good ideas for not being scared the entire month of October, I'll take them. I've heard of "Scary Spray" where you just give them a little spray bottle and tell them it has magic stuff to spray the scary things away. But I have a feeling she will be seeing many ghoulish things over this month, so she needs to cowboy up. Or, toddler up. Whatever, you know what I mean.


debra said...

This one time... Kolt was not going to sleep and was telling me he was Scared. I had no clue why so I thought it was the dark. I decided to turn a lamp on in his room that is shaped like a monkey. It is very dim and lets off a nice bit of light and he FREAKED OUT... toddler style. He started screaming "get it out! get it out!". So... the monkey now resides in my bedroom on my sewing table and he really kept waking up because he had broken his ankle... now he is forever scared of the stupid monkey light. As for being scared of stuff... I dunno. K-man is scared of a lot of stuff but he sleeps in total darkness with no problems... door shut even. I would stay out of the halloween isle at walmart if I were you (thats what we do!). Glad you guys had fun on your date :)

Beth said...

Annabelle when through the being scared at night thing. With her she always said she had a scary dream. Now Joey's in the scared at night phase. And I think that's just it. They get to a point in their thinking where they realize some things are scary and they also have active imaginations, which is probably a good thing developmentally, but it sure stinks when it means less sleep for parents! I haven't found a way to to make it disappear other than doing exactly what you did and said! One time Joey freaked out about the lobsters at Red just never know what will set them off!

Christianne said...

I've found the typical parenting "experts" to be way too logical -- "Explain that there is nothing to really be afraid of...blah blah blah." Well, I think that irrational fears call for irrational solutions.

I usually have a silly word for the girls to say -- like "snickerdoodle" or "hippopotamus" or basically anything else with more than two syllables. Then, if something crazy scares them (or if they're getting a shot at the doctor's office or something else unpleasant), I say, "Okay, how many times do you think we need to say our silly word? Five, six, or seven times?" You can change the numbers as needed. So, depending on the "severity" of the scare, they get to choose (which adds a little of that "toddler sense of control" thing). Then, I say, "Okay, do you want to say it by yourself or do you want Mommy to say it with you?" (toddler choice #2). So, then the silly word gets said the appropriate number of times...and then the tone of my voice dramatically changes to being extraordinarily happy and I say something like, "Yay! All done being scared! Good job! We did it!!! Yay for the silly word!!!"

Has worked much more often than not with my girls. :-)