I'm selfish: I always volunteer to take him to these appointments because it offers us a little special time... Lately, with a newborn, our dates have dwindled; so like a champion scheduler who's more creative than logical, we left the salon with a tidy little boy's cut and a craving for mid-afternoon sweets. After all, our favorite frozen yogurt spot connected this errand to the last -- grocery shopping. A quick stop would fit.
Yojoy is one of those serve-yourself and pay-by-the-ounce frozen yogurt stores. It doesn't matter that we stomped in wearing boots and a turtleneck; their treats are seasonless. And, when I say 'treats' what I really mean are our two favorite standards -- cake batter yogurt with as many sprinkles blanketing it as Mommy will allow for the Master and oreo twist yogurt with a spoonful of crushed cookies for the Mrs. We're creatures of habit.
What's variable, though, is our conversations. Sometimes we sit, like an old married couple, to do the job of eating sweets bite-by-bite with our respective pink and green spoons. But today, Reid joyfully explained lunch at school and the happenings at soccer this morning. Enamored, I listened...until...
Spontaneous laughter erupted. The rich, unpredictable, roller-coaster-like toddler kind. The kind that takes the biggest smile, like an open garage door, to ensure every last giggle is freed and enjoyed by its delighted audience. The kind that makes you want to laugh too. Because it feels so good.
Near tears, I inquired, "What's so funny?"
"Ernie has a sock on his nose, Mommy!!!!"
I racked my brain for what this string of words could mean. There's no TV here. We don't usually watch 'Sesame Street.' Between us, there are four socks, for which all are accounted. And, I don't know anyone named Bert...unless you count the Boys and Girls Club leader at my school. Reid doesn't know him or his socks.
"What do you mean?" I probed.
"You know, when Bert and Ernie are playing that game!!!!" he reminded me between velvety giggles and spoons of melting, tie-dyed yogurt.
With vague recollection, I pieced together an afternoon a few weeks ago when we did watch a deliriously funny skit -- by toddler criteria. (If you need a pick-me-up: the link is below.)
So there we sat, giggling and eating and eating and giggling about a puppet playing a silly sock-on-the-nose game.
It was sweet and endearing, much like my date. Even as I type now tonight, I still hear his laughter...and will trap the memory in my mind and heart as testament to the magic that happens on a regular Saturday in a normal store when we make room for it.