At the request of Rachael and Anita, I thought I'd share a few more details on Peter's passport experience. Then, as I was thinking further about the day, I realized that the whole day was just 'one of those days' - one that will be improved greatly as fodder for entertainment for the rest of you... :-P
The day started out quite promisingly. Up to nurse Timothy just before 6, feeling good when he went back to sleep, so did my devotions before snuggling back in bed for another hour... Up, did breakfast, dishes, chickens, boys ready for the day, finished up a quote for Josh, loaded up the van w/bottles/etc for town, showered, and was on the road by 10:30am.
Grabbed the mail, was pleased to see a cheque we'd been waiting for, and had my first 'oh brother' moment - I'd forgotten the deposit book Josh had asked me to bring in case said cheque arrived. No problem, home was just 6min away and basically on my way into town. Running in, I realized I'd also forgotten 3-4 letters I wanted to mail, not to mention a light on and the computer on - big no-nos in my electricity conscious world.
Back to the van, Peter and I enjoyed our trip in listening to the Sibelus on CBC radio and a running dialogue about every big truck, cow, pond, etc we saw (Peter is talking a mile a minute now, and likes feedback on everything he says).
Met Josh and delivered the quote, his lunch, and one other item which, turns out, wasn't exactly what he'd wanted, but it'd suffice. Nursed Timothy, ran by the bank, and THEN, it was time.
I had these grand ideas of being in and out of Shopper's in, oh, maybe 15 min? We headed in, and to start things off, Timothy was VERY DIRTY. I won't go into any more details, let's just say, we needed a bathroom, NOW. So, we found a bathroom NOW, and I alternated between cleaning up one son and instructing the other son on the disgustingness of public washroom floors/toilets/you-name-it.
All cleaned up, we went to find the nice lady who did the pictures. Peter was fine as we got everything set up, but when we asked who should go first, he started fussing - not an uncommon response to something new, but one that is usually quickly fixed. No problem, I suggested doing Timothy first so Peter could watch.
Timothy did great. It took about 5min to get 'the perfect' passport picture, but we did it in fairly short order. Then, we turned to Peter, who, realizing our attention was on him, started fussing again. His fussing turned to outright crying as I tried to persuade him to sit in that tall, white, scary big chair. I don't think it helped that we'd talked (trying to prepare him for this moment) about how he needed to do a serious face for the picture. He'd had fun doing the serious face a few times that morning, but had been a bit unsure about the whole idea, and seemingly decided that this whole thing was just too scary.
Well, I talked with him for a few minutes, then asked the lady if we could go out to the van and come back. She was most gracious and accommodating, and kept telling me "this happens all the time!" (Yes, but not with MY child, LOL)
We went out to the van, administered discipline, and verbally walked through the whole thing again. Racking my brain, I decided that offering ice-cream as incentive wouldn't technically be a bribe, just an... encouragement. He found that idea quite exciting, and walked happily back into the store with me... until we saw the lady and THE CHAIR once more, at which point he started crying again, and asking to return to the van. Thankfully, I'd had the foresight to put Timothy in his carseat while out at the van, so I was able to devote my full attention to Peter (I must have sent up 3-4 flash thank you prayers during the 'episode' that Timothy was so happy). After about 10min I told the lady to feel free to go and I would call her when we were ready. With her gone Peter was willing to sit in the chair, but he wouldn't stop crying. I tried calling Josh and letting him talk to daddy, I tried explaining why we needed the picture taken, I tried everything I could think of. Finally, I was starting to get very frustrated with him, and realized I needed to stop and refocus. So, I prayed out loud with Peter sobbing in front of my, asking for wisdom and patience. It didn't happen immediately, but he calmed enough that I was able to call the lady back in.
Of course, now he was sitting fine, but he was still sobbing, and they needed a picture with his mouth closed. I kept saying, "Peter, if you want to be done, you need to close your mouth so the lady can get a picture without your teeth." He finally did so for a brief moment, but the lady missed the picture. Finally, I went over and stood beside him, put my hand on his leg, squeezed slightly, and said, "Peter, close your mouth for the picture." Thank goodness he did so, and we were FINALLY DONE!
The funniest part was as we were leaving Peter waved goodbye and said, "Thank you!" to the poor store associate. As we were walking out the door, he turned to me and brightly asked, "ice cream?" So, I had to explain that, no, he wasn't having any ice cream because he'd cried and screamed, and not cooperated, and wouldn't close his mouth... It was a hard lesson, but hopefully it'll stick!
By the time we finished getting groceries, meeting Josh at a park for lunch, and dropping off bottles at the depot, I was so ready to be home. So much so, that I forgot a number of things I had planned to still do. As I was half way home, I suddenly went "Oh no!" I had forgotten to get my seeds - which was very sad, because I love picking out seeds, but was planting the next day. No problem, I just called Josh and he said he'd grab them for me.
Home sweet home, and the boys were fast asleep. I unloaded the groceries, grabbed my jacket from the front seat, and OH NO! There was the passport application and pictures my dear hubby had so sweetly signed for me. I had forgotten to mail them. I carried them inside to be mailed the next day, returned to the van, and noticed Timothy's cute little face smiling up from the grass. His set of passport pictures had been picked up by the wind and spread from hither to yon!
Passport pictures retrieved (thankfully! I had visions of redoing that afternoon - not pleasant dreams!), I finished bringing in the groceries, including a nice, juicy watermelon, which leaped from my hands and split itself on the floor. At that point, I decided this day really wasn't meant to be. :-P
As always though, it got better from there, and the rest of our evening was much more enjoyable. And that was the end of 'one of those days..."