Thursday, February 12, 2009

I had planned to give her cookies as a thank you, but she probably would've thought I was trying to poison her

When Alex picked up the spoon Alli had tossed forcefully onto the floor, walked over to the sink and rinsed it off for at least 10 seconds, I knew things were going to be fine.

"Wow. I stopped doing that months ago," I said, laughing. "As long as Toby doesn't lick it, I hand it right back to her."

She arrived early for babysitting duties, giving Allison plenty of time to warm up to her before we left. It also gave me plenty of time to run down things like how the baby gates work, where I put her pajamas and the entire dry erase board of notes I left on the fridge.

We fed Allison together, taking turns handing over spoonfuls, since Alli was much more interested in interacting with The New Girl rather than the Woman Who Gave Birth to Her. Because, you know, novelty trumps the effort of pushing for three hours and the raging hemorrhoids that follow any day.

But Alli's admiration turned out to be a gigantic blessing when it was time for me and Jerry to leave. There were no tears, just glorious distraction in the form of a fun new toy that responded to her crazy loud sounds with even crazier and louder ones.

We got home hours earlier than we had expected because our attempt at winging a movie after dinner didn't pan out thanks to getting done directly in between the 7 and 9 p.m. showings. So instead, we decided to relieve Alex and opt for a rental.

She was full of stories when we got home, and I didn't realize how eager I'd be to hear them. As someone who babysat for years, it was surreal to be on the other end of the exchange. It brought all of the memories racing back -- the families, trying not to fall asleep on the really late nights, getting that awkward ride home.

I couldn't help but notice that the house looked better than when we left. Earlier in the day, I had attempted to bake and frost Valentine's cookies for Allison's play group and left all of the pans filled with what turned out to be little heart-shaped nightmares on the counter. When we got back, they were neatly arranged on a plate, all the pans washed and stacked in the drying rack in the sink.

Something I would've done, I thought.

Alex went on to tell us how after playing for awhile, Alli walked over to the fridge and pounded on it, likely indicating that the dinner she gave up on in the excitement of taking in The New Girl probably wasn't such a smart idea after all. She also described how bedtime went, the diaper disaster she endured and the Toby debacle, causing me to slap my head instantly.

Toby! Of course, TOBY! Totally forgot to even MENTION Toby in my dry erase notes, prompting me to immediately scoop him into my arms and apologize.

Apparently when he didn't return immediately from a trip outside or respond to repeated calls, Alex started to yell louder. And louder. And eventually our neighbor who was leaving for his third shift laughed at the commotion and came to the rescue.

The experience allowed me to relax about things I probably never should've been uptight over in the first place. Like wondering whether I would even be able to enjoy myself because I would be worrying the entire time.

The second that door closed behind us, I was only looking forward to dinner.

And any remaining reservations were whisked away once I found the bottom of my first glass of wine.


The Plainsman said...

Another "first" to check off your list!

But were was Toby when she was looking for him?

Jaclyn said...

Oh, I'm SO glad it went so well and you guys were able to enjoy yourselves.

Sounds like EVERYONE had a great time...and you just might have yourselves a new sitter!!! =)

Ray said...

Glad you had a good time with Jerry after all. Alex sounds like a great babysitter. =o)

Shal said...

Sounds like a victory first outing! YAY!!! Glad you guys enjoyed yourself!