Last week we made a quick trip to w@lm@rt to grab some dog food for our herd of dogs. While there, we passed the clearance isle and Mr. B’s face lit up.
“Momma,” he cried excitedly, “Look! These are on sale!”
Now, you can look at this statement in one of two ways: First, that I have been spending entirely TOOOOO much time in this store and it’s clearance sections, or Second, that I have successfully imbedded a thrifty sale-finding core in my child. Take it the way you will.
So while gazing wistfully at the large aray of junk on sale, Mr. B sees this game. This “BEAN game”. He immediately snatches it up and tells me that this game is “lonely” here and needs to come home with him. I tell him that we can’t get it today. He asks very nicely and tells me how much he wants it. I look at him, cock my head and realize that he has been a fantastic kid this whole time Daddy has been gone, he’s been really good in the store, and he IS asking nicely. I tell him that if it’s on clearance we can get it.
When we get to the cashier, she rings up the dog food and scans the game.
“$5.88.” she says cheerfully.
“Sorry, buddy, but this game is not on sale. We’ll have to put it back for next time.” I tell him.
You woulda thought his heart was broken. Or his arm or leg or something meaningfull like that. The poor kid just looked at me with big eyes full of tears and fell to the ground in a heap. Kinda like the Wicked Witch in The Wizard of OZ, but without the water and the smoke and the screeching. I told him that I wasn’t getting anything special either, just dog food, and that we could get the game another time. That was went it hit. The tantrum. I picked up his flailing body, put him in the cart and took off outa there as fast as I could.
When I got him calmed down in the parking lot, we came to the agreement that he could use the money in his piggy bank at home to buy the “Bean Game” if he wanted to. He had been saving the money Aunt DD gave him, the Valentine money that Great Grammie sent him, and the money the Easter Bunny (aka Great-Grammie) put in his Easter Eggs. Mr. B also gets a few pennies every time he goes stinky in the potty. He could choose to put the pennies in the gumball machine or in his bank – he chose the latter EVERY time. He agreed that he would like to use all the money in his bank for the precious bean game.
Fast foward to my mom and Grammie coming out to spend the night with us. We went to dinner at Hometown Buffet and decide that we needed to walk off our dinner at w@lm@rt. After getting the excersise we need and buying stuff we don’t, we pass the clearance isle on our way to the checkout. Mr. B runs over and says, “Nana! Grammie! Look at this bean game! I almost have enough money to get it! If I get 2 more green dollars I will come back and buy it!” He is grinning hugely and showing off his future purchase.
“Okay, you showed them, now please put it back on the shelf.” I tell him. I’m semi-waiting for another tantrum.
Instead, he places it back on the shelf. He looks at it wistfully and turns to my mom to hold her hand again.
My mom and my Grammie look at me with HUGE, sad, puppy-dog eyes. They are shocked. They are saddened.
Grammie asks me imploringly, “Sarah, may I PLEASE get that little game for him? I don’t really get the chance to do anything like this very often. Just let me do this, please.”
What am I gonna say to my Grammie? What? Like I could say no to her. Hey, my mom was there too, giving me the same stare.
“Sure you can get the game, as long as you’re sure you don’t mind.” I say.
“Of course I don’t mind!” exclaims Grammie.
So Grammie tells Mr. B that because he has been such a good listener and has held onto Nana’s hand while in the store, and he has worked sooooo hard to save up his little pennies, she is going to get the game for him. Mr. B looks over at me to see if it’s really ok. I nod my head yes, and he runs up to Grammie and gives her a big hug. Then runs over to grab the game and hug it to his chest until he places it up on the register belt. We finally make it back to the car (hey! I told you I parked it under a street light! Sorry is was the wrong side of the parking lot, but I found it, didn’t I?) Mr. B sat in his little seat, completely contented.
As we drove home, Mr. B clutched the game to himself and fell asleep on the box. He also slept with it that night. He is still playing it – by the game rules, by his own rules, by my rules, by NO rules. It is his newest obsession. Beans on the bucket, IN the bucket, under the bucket, now only two beans at a time….etc. I can think of a lot worse things, so thank you Grammie!!!