Sunday, March 6, 2011

The Shnooks

According to website, they like to be in a chain gang.

I would be remiss if I did not post about our recent adventures with the Shnooks.

Early one Saturday morning while watching cartoons, Z and I saw a commercial for a new toy. Z was immediately smitten with what she had seen and was bouncing around the living room as though she had just witnessed the second coming. Being that it was early and I was busy attempting to get us ready for the day, I only caught the ending of the commercial that said, "Buy it at Walgreen's".

This would be like most things in a 3 year old's attention span, I figured, she would talk about it for a few minutes and then all remaining traces of it would be stored to the back of her brain to be regurgitated at some later, random time.

Except that she is getting older and smarter.

She retained every piece of this commercial (save the name of the product) and would recant it to her father, grandparents and visting relatives. Throughout the day I heard her tell everyone about this amazing and exciting toy that she had been a witness to. As a reward for having a great day without tantrums or intense insanity, I told her that we would go to the store to buy this toy.

I packed her up in the car and the 5 point harness could hardly contain her excitement as we drove to the store. We searched the small toy department and seasonal Easter supplies. No luck. I asked an associate who stared blindly at me and then asked slowly, "Let me get this straight, you are looking for a toy that you do not know the name of that may or may not look like a stuffed animal and a troll doll had, er, um, relations?"

I nodded. I knew that he thought I should probably be put away on a 48 hour hold.

Now, I was on a mission.

I am not spoiling my child. (My posts about threats and discipline and punishments should be enough to tell you that.)

There are reasons to my madness.

Firstly, she has NEVER asked for a toy. Sure, we have been at the store and she has liked the toy sections, but no matter what she was playing with, if you showed her something else, she would divert away from the first toy as though it had never caught her interest. For her to remember something as small a commercial with that amount of detail that she had, meant to me that she is reaching an all new milestone in life.

Secondly, she had worked really hard to keep her emotions and attitude in check. Several times throughout the day I caught her, fists clenched, ready to rage when she would remember, all on her own, that she needed to be on her best behavior. I felt that this needed to be rewarded.

Finally, her birthday is one week before Christmas. It is a long time before either holiday and it feels like it has been a long time since she has gotten a gift.

Anyway, after the first store debacle, we tried again on Sunday. Again, crazy stares and no luck. I searched the internet Sunday night and Monday morning, I was starting to wonder if she and I hallucinated the whole bit.

As a last ditch effort, I posted a plea on Facebook when (Eureeka!) one of my friends had seen the display at her local store, seen the commercial and sent me a picture on my cell phone. Armed with the name of the product and a picture, I tried yet another store. Nothing.

Z began to weep. She pled her case to the sales clerk, who, in turn, got on the phone and started calling all of the stores in town. The closest one to us was a good 20 minute drive across town, but the expression on my girl's face when she saw that display was priceless.

I know that this is just the beginning. I know that I will not always be able to get her what she wants in life. I know that soon the requests for toys that are under $10 will stop and that the demand for more expensive things will come.

For now, I am able to delight in the fact that my 3 year old watched a 30 second commercial, fell in love with what she saw, and memorized and retained it all down to the smallest detail.

I am grateful for her amazing mind, the creativity that she has expressed in the last week when talking about what she and her new toy would be able to do together, and the trust and faith in her momma that I would not only be able to find it for her, but that she would actually buy it for her.

And that is worth so much more than $7.99 to me.

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