Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Traditions: Shopping

I don't consider myself a "one-time" shopper when it comes to Christmas. I usually shop different places and for different people at several different times. There is one trip, however, that is a family tradition, and it's always my very favorite.

Every year since I can remember my mom has taken me (or I her) to Springfield to go shopping. For years she, my brother and I would all go shopping together as soon as we were out of school for break. When little Chloe came along, she went too. She went in my belly one year, she went in her carrier the next year, in her stroller the following year, and since then has been afoot with us.

We always leave early and shop all morning. We have lunch together somewhere yummy, then shop until dark, finally surrendering and making the long drive home. We switch things up from year-to-year, but one thing always remains true: we spend too much money have a blast!

In the last few years I have created the tradition of letting Chloe go to Build-A-Bear on this shopping trip. It's the only time she ever gets to indulge in the ridiculously high priced and baited sweet process of making her own stuffed animal. She looks forward to it all year and treasures each one she has created.

So it might be safe to say it was my mistake when I threatened her at lunch today. Yes, I figured if I threatened to take away her most exciting thing, she would eat those bites of protein I insisted upon. She jewed me down to "just one big bite," and without giving the detailed story, we ended our feud in the mall parking lot as she spit the rest of the chicken (she'd had in her mouth since we left Cheddar's) on the ground. The rest, you ask? What happened to the 'non' rest? It was spewed in specks around the car in a sneeze. Yeah.

So we entered the mall, the chicken not having been consumed, mad yet heart-broken Mommy, and bawling Chloe (for having lost her build-a-bear privilege). Oh, and a clearly distraught and traumatized Nana (who would NEVER punish her lol). After letting her grieve for an appropriate amount of time, I had to propose a deal.  I just COULDN'T take this from her. I just couldn't!

In the end, Little Missy ended up with no mall pretzel and having to fold all her clean clothes at home. She is currently snuggled up with her little Rudolph (who says "I'm cute, I'm cute!" and whose nose lights up). She thanked me endlessly for letting her "change her punishment," and vowed not to ask for one single toy all day. She worked long and hard on folding all those clothes, and she did it all by herself with a cheerful heart. She is such a good little girl and always makes me so proud, even when she's not been on her best behavior.

Today 'tradition' got the best of a soft-hearted Mama...and it was worth it :)

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