Step Right Up and Win Some Crap!

My nerves are fried, my ears are ringing, and the inside of my purse looks like an Oriental Trading warehouse.

If you’re a parent of school-aged student, you’ve probably already guessed where I’ve been tonight.

Yes, it was our elementary school’s “Fun Night.” What’s “Fun Night,” you ask? Well, imagine it, if you will…

Hundreds of children, adults, and even a newborn baby or two, all crammed into the school at the same time for carnival games, inflatable bounce house and slides, and face painting. Oh, yes, it’s a kid’s dream come true—and a parent’s obligation.

And I’m still trying to get Boys #2 and #3 down from their cotton-candy-and-cake-walk highs. Their voices are 1000 decibels louder than normal, they have settled on bouncing as their main form of transportation, and they keep emitting random screams that are turning me into a very mean mommy. It’s going to be a long night…

In all honestly, though, Fun Night is a well-organized event put on by our school’s PTO. And I probably should’ve felt guilty that I wasn’t one of the PTO Moms running around the school with the walkie-talkies, selling “meal deal” tickets, and solving the crisis of the MIA volunteer from the Ball Toss game. And I didn’t did, I really didn’t did. But, hey, I did my part. I ran Plinko (the homemade version of the classic game from The Price Is Right) for 25 whole minutes—by myself! Whew, it was a tough job, but somebody had to do it!

Highlights of the night:

  • Getting to hold on to two pairs of stinky tennis shoes while the boys competed against each other in the bouncy obstacle course.
  • Finding Boy #1 with his friend and his EX-girlfriend (Yes, this mean mom made them “break up.”) and seeing that he had a rainbow painted on his cheek.
  • Seeing Husband embarrass Boy #1 by giving him a big hug and kiss in front of his friends.
  • Declining the offer of Boy #2’s cotton candy, which had been licked or touched in every 2-inch area.
  • Pointing out to Husband that he had a piece of cotton candy stuck in his chin stubble.
  • Helping Boys #2 and #3 solve that age-old dilemma: plastic sticky hand or lip-shaped whistle? (Thank God the whistle did not find its way to our house.)
  • Yelling at Boy #2 137 times for not watching where he was going and completely running into people.
  • Yelling at Boy #2 74 times for twirling with his arms outstretched right in the middle of a traffic-jammed hallway.
  • Yelling at Boy #2 once for not watching where he was going, running into a girl, and nearly knocking her pizza slice out of her hand.
  • Telling the boys that the punch card was all used up, when in fact there was ONE PUNCH LEFT.

And finally, the crash after the high. The boys just fell asleep at 10:19 after being “put to bed” at 8:20.

I think Husband had the right idea. (By the way, did I mention this was his FIRST Fun Night? Somehow he either managed to be coaching or “sick” every year until now. This year, he wasn’t quite quick enough to find a way out of it. I’m sure it helped that I didn’t tell him about it until this afternoon. Heh heh heh…) As we were getting ready to fight the mob in the “Prize Room,” where we got to redeem our tokens for fabulous prizes that would “mysteriously” find themselves in the trash in a few days, we passed a friend and former co-worker of Husband’s.

“Hey, I just want to know which line is for the beer,” he asked her.

“If we found that line,” the friend answered, “I’d be sending Addy back to win Mommy more tokens!”

But I guess it’s not about us parents. *Sigh.* And the boys did feel like they went to Disneyworld. (Yeah, I know—no comparison. But the boys have never actually been there, so they’re clueless.)

Tonight right before they finally succumed to the much-needed sleep, the two youngest boys summed up their experience oh-so eloquently. (Note to self: Introduce boys to the Thesaurus. Mommy’s a writer, for heaven’s sake!)

Boy #3: “Fun Night was so fun.”
Boy #2: “No. Fun Night was the funnest night ever.”

Ahh, the innocence of youth and low expectations.


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