For Ava’s birthday this year, our main gift to her was a morning out with Mommy. The truth of the matter was that Jeff and I couldn’t think of a gift to get Ava this year and a morning out with me was an easy fix. As it turned out, Ava LOVED the idea. Her birthday was at the beginning of May and she has been asking about her Mommy date ever since. Well, finally, the middle of July, and we are going on our morning out.
This morning Ava was so excited for our time together. The original gift was a morning out with Mommy and Ava could choose if she wanted to go pick out a new book at the book store or a new outfit. Lately Ava has been really into playing dress up so the present evolved to going to Savers to pick out a new dress up outfit and getting a book at Barnes and Noble.
I was actually really looking forward to helping Ava pick out some dress up clothes. When I was little, my mom had a few old dresses from when she was in high school that my sister and I would play in. They were long and flowy and I always felt like the most glamorous girl in the world when I put them on. We would clomp around in high heels that were way too big, wearing dresses that were way too long, feeling like a movie star the whole time.
Ava and I arrived at Savers and started looking though the dresses. I found a really lacy dress that I thought Ava would like. Right off she exclaimed “Ohhhh, I LOVE it!” Then I looked at the price. $14.99. WHAT?!?! Sheesh, this is Savers! I wasn’t expecting to pay $15.oo for a play dress. I was thinking more along the lines of $5. “Ummm, lets keep looking Ava, maybe we can find some cheaper ones and then you can get more than one.” She was up for that. We finally found several dresses that could fit the bill. “Let’s go try them on Mom!”
In the dressing room, we put the first dress on. “I LOVE it Mom!” “What do you like about it Ava?” “I like the lace and that it’s long and drags on the ground.” I soon learned that dragging on the ground was a must. With each dress she tried on we talked about what she liked and didn’t like. I loved this part of our day. It felt like shopping for a prom dress only better… because she’s five and only cares about the glories she can come up with in her imagination. I loved seeing the look in her eyes as she looked in the mirror… I knew she felt so glamorous in these over sized, somewhat gaudy, dresses. We found two that Ava liked and were more in the price range. We leave happy!
Next stop, Barnes and Noble. We go to the library all the time, but Ava has never gotten a book from the bookstore. At first she didn’t understand the concept. “You mean I get to keep it?” Yes! The one book she really wanted to find was Little Critter “Just Going to the Dentist”. Ava has a thing for the dentist. Why? I don’t know. She’s never been to the dentist (which will change soon, hopefully she likes the dentist just as much after her first visit) She’s gotten this Little Critter book from the library before and luckily we found it at Barnes and Noble. Now she has it for her very own. Along with “Just Going to the Dentist” Ava chose one other book and then we sat and read for a while.
Finally it was time to go to lunch. All morning long, Ava was asking where we were going for lunch. “Is it McDonalds?!? Can we go to McDonalds for lunch??” Since I knew this was were Ava probably wanted to go, I had already planned to take her there, but hadn’t told her that so it could be a surprise. Once in the car, I thought I’d ask her were she wanted to go. “So Ava, were do you want to go for lunch?” From the back seat:
“Ummm, hmmmm… let me think about it.” And then silence. I about died in the front seat. She had been talking about McDonalds all morning and now she’s like, well, ummm, let me think about it. This was hilarious. After a minute of nothing I started to get nervous that she was going to throw out something like the Texas Roadhouse and I wasn’t really prepared to go to the Texas Roadhouse. “Hey Mom, how about… McDonalds!” Sounds good Ava.
Once we had our food, Ava looked at me and said “Mom, this is so great.” What do you like most about this Ava? “It’s just quiet and calm and peaceful.” Yes. Our house is rarely calm and quiet and peaceful.
What a great morning we had. Ava felt special and I loved having such a special time with her. After all our heart ache, these are the times that I feared I would lose and never get to have. How thankful I am for outings like today.