No good deed goes unpunished.

Especially when you have children.
Children are loving, snuggly, persnickity, perverse little wretches.
Today we planned to go to the beach. We were supposed to leave the house at 9:30 this morning in order to catch the sea before high tide and meet Ellen and Tiff.
We woke up early, with an hour and a half to spare, and I gave Monkey her requested breakfast of apples and peanut butter and cereal. I told her we only had an hour and a half before we had to leave to meet our friends at the beach for a day of swimming and fun. She excitedly jumped around and then asked to play on the Xbox.
“Er… no,” I said. “”You need to eat your breakfast, so we can go to the beach.”

And here is where the good deed is punished. Sad that she was not allowed to spend the hour before the beach on the Xbox, Monkey defiantly settled at the table, set her ankles up on it, and slowly, painfully picked up a single frosted mini wheat, and began to gnaw delicately on it’s edge.

Sighing and shaking my head, I went about my packing of snacks, dressing of baby, and otherwise preparing to spend the day doing something fun with my children. Occasionally I would toss out to Monkey that she needed to eat, as I would not be spending six dollars on a crappy piece of pizza on the boardwalk if she failed to fill up on breakfast. I would also not be getting her fast food.

An hour passed. It was 15 minutes until departure time. She had managed to consume about 5 frosted mini wheats, and one apple slice. Argh.

Finally I told her to finish getting ready. She meandered up stairs, spent about 20 minutes in the bathroom without managing to brush her teeth, and only when I yelled up “If you are not ready and down here in ten minutes we are NOT GOING!!” did she actually scurry to brush her teeth and hair, and put on her shoes.

Of course, by now I was grumpy, having spent the morning dealing with She-Who-Will-Not-Be-Fed, instead of getting to engage in the excitement of beach trip preparation.

About 10 minutes into the drive the comments started:
“Ooh..a Wendy’s!” “Look mom! A McDonald’s.” “Mom, can I get Ice cream?”

I just don’t get it. Why, why on earth, would she decide to goad me to the point of canceling the trip?? Does she like me in a bad mood? Argh! Of course, my mood was not improved by carting the huge bag of supplies, beach umbrella, and baby to the beach. Nor was I cheered by the bouts of crying Otter engaged in. I did cheer up when we went down to the water and splashed a bit. Pictured here:

It was also nice to see the kids splashing, and to hang out, however briefly, with Ellen and Tiff.

However, the trip was fairly stressful for me. I swear, I am at the point where leaving the house at all is simply too much trouble. Maybe I will become a hermit.

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