Tuesday, July 26, 2011

(Expensive Little) Season Tickets

Buzzfeed's Culture Buzz has published a list of "15 Places You Can No Longer Go As An Adult".
Chuck-E-Cheese, children's museums, and Santa's lap rank among these places of sheer delight that adults can no longer frequent without appearing creepy or ridiculous. Sorry, that joyful phase of your life has passed.  No more ball pits for you.  No more playground tunnels, goodbye petting zoo. *sigh*

Au contraire, dear Buzzfeed. 
Such places of wonder are off limits to you in the 18+ crowd...until you have KIDS.
Then, the game's back on.

You go so many more places, do so many more things - some you've never tried before - because you have munchkins.  And because they're still fun.

For example, until recently, I had never touched a sting ray.
I've touched one now, I'm good, I feel no need to do it again.
But still. How cool is that?

They're annoying little buggers sometimes, these kidlets, but they are (expensive) season tickets to all the awesome kiddie rides and attractions life has to offer. And you can totally pretend that the fun you're having is all about watching your child have new and magical experiences, blah blah blah...hey, sweetie, want Mommy will take you the teacups again?

I humbly submit the following additions to the list of places I missed out on as an adult, until I had kiddos:

  • Kids' Playplaces. We have Jelly Bean Jungle and Bounce U around here, for starters.  I looooooove Bounce U.  Parents are invited to bounce with their kids, and there is no admission charge for parents during Preschool Playdate. Score, free bouncing!

  • Kiddie/Family Movies: I will always love Princess and the Frog. Always. That, and shoveling movie theater popcorn into my mouth. Always love both.
  • Children's concerts. Wait a minute, usually my internal monologue spends the concert heckling the singers. But I love these shows anyway.  You should see my older one dance/spin/wiggle to the sound of someone playing guitar and singing random stuff about vegetables. While I enjoy myself and continue the internal heckling.
  • Good old playdates/playgroups.  When else can you go over to someone's house in the middle of the afternoon for no other purpose than to hang out? Because everybody knows the toys are better in the other kid's playroom. Assuming your kids will actually play together, you can sit around, drink coffee, and talk about work, life, and whatever new stupid allergen rules have surfaced this week. Bonus if there's juice boxes. Giant bonus if there's grown-up juice boxes.

Kidding, kidding!
(Not really kidding.)

You know what? I may not have gotten 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep in years, I may have to cut up other peoples' food into tiny non-choking-hazard pieces while my own entree cools to room temperature, but I can sure as heck go down the big slide at Bounce U.  I have jumped in a ball pit quite recently, and it was still fun. What, there was hardly anybody at Jelly Bean Jungle that day, and somewhere in there was E's sock!

I will, however, refrain from sitting on Santa's lap. I promise.
Ellie concurs. 

Comment with any additions to this list you'd like to include.  
It's good to be to the parents.

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