The other day, I asked my two daughters who they wanted to call for a playdate. Their answer? “You, Mom. We want a playdate with you.” First my heart melted. Then, it broke.
I used to be a mom who played with her kids all the time. Then, something happened. We call her number four. Child number four rocked my playful little world somehow, and I have no time or energy for playing with my kids like I used to. When I thought about it, I hadn’t actually sat down to play toys with either of them for a while. Playing outside with them? Every day in the summer and nice fall and spring weather. Card games or board games? Probably once a week or so. Phineas and Ferb Uno has become a favorite. But, I hadn’t played toys, unless putting the Barbie or Polly Pocket dress on when handed to me while I was making dinner or doing laundry counts.
On Monday they made the request. Yesterday I carved out half an hour for the five-year-old and today I did the same for the nine-year-old. My five-year-old and I played Disney Princess Polly Pockets. Mainly this involved coming up with unlikely scenarios for the princesses to meet each other and have polite, mannered conversation and activities.
I had to quash my desire to have them get into cat fights over the one prince we have or refuse to let each other try on certain clothes. I wanted the dialogue to go something like this: “No, Cinderella, put it back, you hag,” cried out Belle, “that yellow dress is mine! And besides, it looks horrible with your pale coloring. (sniff) Go put on your rag dress.” Someday, when my kids realize I’m kidding, we’ll have to play this way.
I played Littlest Pet Shops with my nine-year-old. Because of the size of her collection, it took us a full ten minutes to just divvy them up. Then, set up became a rather important affair. Of course, my little social organizer had to set up a party for them in which they all had food, and races, and a dance activity. I was constantly knocking other pets over and making my daughter laugh. She thought I was hilarious.
The LPS pets are so cute, I had a hard time thinking mean thoughts with them. For a moment. I really would have liked to just have the cats get mercilessly chased by the dogs while the horses stampeded and crushed a few slow-moving pets. Then, of course, the rabbit could have run circles around the turtle chanting, “Still think slow and steady wins, eh Bub?” As a finale, the lone bear would have gobbled up anybody left.
I really did have fun playing with my girls. I loved spending some good one-one time with them. I’m going to schedule in playtime with the kids more often. And, I may just sneak into their bedroom and get out the toys to play with myself when my girls aren’t looking. Anyone want to be Snow White? I figure she’ll want to bake a poison apple pie for all the other princesses because they’ve made fun of her high-pitched voice. Playdate, anyone?