Lisa and I took the kids to the zoo today. I love going to the zoo with the boys - they are so into the...food. the carousel ride. the ice-cream. the mini zoo trucks. Oh yeah, and the animals. I wish there was a place you could just walk around a circle with your kids, buy them junk food, and then take them on a carousel ride. Because honestly, they aren't that into the animals. Unless you count the squirrels and the peacocks that roam freely through the zoo grounds. They are far more into the ancillary events surrounding a trip to the zoo. But it is the experience, right? It is all about the experience.
The day was fun, and as we were getting ready to leave we promised the kids a treat for good (ok, decent) behavior during our trip. Jackson (James) and his buddy Jackson (George) both hemmed and hawed over which treat to choose. Ice-cream seemed to be on the top of their lists. But then JG mentioned cotton candy. And slurpees. And dipp'n dots. And the choices were almost too much to handle. Never mind that JJ really hasn't ever tasted cotton candy or a slurpee, he was waffling between those two. He finally settled on cotton candy for he and Holden to share. Not my ideal choice, but it was his choice to make so I went with it.
I paid for his fluff and my diet soda (practically dipping into the boys college fun to pay for an afternoon at the zoo). I gave Holden a small amount, and he cautiously brought it to his mouth, tasted a bite, and was sticky and hooked in seconds. Jackson, on the other hand, was a little more startled by the fluffy texture. He began to cry, refusing to eat the sticky treat. He had changed his mind. But it was too late. I wasn't buying anything else. For the first time in his life I begged my son to taste the sugar, eat the sugar, love the sugar! He refused.
He stood his ground. I stood mine. So with tears (his) we walked towards the exit. Sniffling and whining, he noticed his brother inhaling the treat. So he relented to trying it. And he did. And he loved it. What kid wouldn't? I told him that when I was a kid cotton candy was the highlight of our annual trip to the Southplains fair. That OP (my Dad) would buy each of us girls a bag of cotton candy as we were leaving the fairgrounds. I would munch a small bite, saving the rest to savor over the next week. I adored cotton candy. And so it seems, did my boys.
As we reached the parking lot, however, Jackson gave me his bag of cotton back claiming it was too sweet (what? is this my child? too sweet? what is that??), and settled for the pretzels in my purse for his snack. Holden had his fill as well and dug into a Quaker Oats Breakfast Cookie. So of course, being the good, waste-free mama that I am, I devoured the entire rest of the bag on our long drive home, thinking fondly of our yearly trip to the Southplains fair. Sweet.