Today was the first day off I've had in a while that I was with Monkey all day and he wasn't schedule to go to his Dad's for the night. I was very much looking forward to taking him to an outdoor festival I'd planned to go to with my parents, but the weather had other plans. My parents still went, but by the time they left he was taking his nap, and I wouldn't wanted to have him out in the cold anyway.
Today's New Activity: Taking the Toddler to the Movies
We did take Monkey to the movies when he was just a few months old, putting earplugs in his tiny ears and then just letting him fall asleep there. But this was the first time I've taken him as a fully aware, sitting-up child who actually had an interest in the whole thing.
I was kind of nervous taking him since it was just him and me and I had no idea whether or not he'd be running for the door 3 minutes in. I mean, if he had been I suppose we could have just left, but what a waste that would have been.
We went to see Rio. I didn't know much about it, but the other option was "Kung Fu Panda 2," and I know this is going to make me sound super old or just like a major fuddy duddy, but I saw the first one and it made me dizzy...plus, it just seemed like Kung Fu Panda would have had more fighting in it than I want Monkey to take in (I was gonna say "at this age," but really, at what age is it good to start absorbing violence? At least it's martial arts and not shooting...that's something).
When we got seated, he surprised me by sitting calmly on my lap and munching from his little bag of popcorn like an old pro! Maybe he goes to the movies with his Dad, I don't know, but he looked like somebody who knew the drill. And he was so mellow. I was fully prepared to have to shush him or corral him or issue apologies to the people in front of his for some errant popcorn kernels. But he only spoke to say "whoah!" when a box went crashing down, "more?" when we ran out of popcorn, and "water" when he got thirsty. Oh, also "birdie" and "mo-cycle" (motorcycle) when he spotted those things.
The movie had beautiful animation and the storyline was very cute. Oh! And the Rio edition of Angry Birds makes a WHOLE lot more sense now. I'm sure it was all explained in some intro I quickly skipped over, and I don't know if anybody else playing that game was a little perplexed by the two birds stuck together, but watch the movie and it'll all be clear.
The voice casting (even the now type-cast nerdy voice of Jesse Eisenberg) was perfect and the whole thing a visual wonder. The people who figure this stuff out (this how-to-keep-kids-entertained stuff) are brilliant. Juuuuussst when Monkey and the entire rest of the theater were starting to get antsy, standing up and moving around and talking and trying to escape, this spectacular Carnival scene came on that settled everyone back into their seats nicely. And that scene *really* made me want to go to Brazil for the festivities some day.
I was so proud of how grown up my son is becoming and so happy to be there with him that I cried a few times out of sheer, spontaneous joy. And I may or may not have cried at the end when (SPOILER ALERT) the main character's owner sort of sets him free, expressing sentiments about what a "big boy" he is. Ugh. It makes me want to cry just thinking about it. Those days are a long, long ways off for me, but I can sort of see the writing on the walls, and....well, let's just stick to the happy feeling for now.