So Evelynn, she's tired. And pissy. She's kicking and screaming and punching Jeff in the head. I rock and sway, bounce and jiggle, push her up and down and up and down the block in the stroller. She's not having it, so I go back to the line that hasn't moved at all in fifteen minutes. Madelynn is getting restless, she's running into the people in front of her, whining and bashing her balloon off of Ev's tear streaked face, but unwilling to leave without her face-paint. Evelynn bit and popped her balloon animal and Mads is the saddest little girl in the whole universe, the only thing that will make her feel better is if she is a dragon. Jeff looks like he's about to snap. There are meltdowns happening with the kids in front of us and behind us, strollers are clipping our ankles as people cut through the line and some kid walked by with an ice cream cone, so now I really need a fucking ice cream cone. We stood in that line from hell for over an hour. By the time we were next, Madelynn had decided that she no longer wanted to be a dragon, she wants to be a puppy. Or maybe a butterfly. Anything but a dragon. Whatever, I don't want to talk about it anymore. Just tell the lady what you want and let's get the fuck out of here. Jeff is gone, he can't handle the line anymore so he's pushing Ev all over Bellefonte to see if she will finally sleep.
It's our turn! I'm doing a small happy dance as I help Mads into the chair. Smiling professional face-painter asks her what she would like to be. Madelynn is silent for a moment, then crosses her arms over her chest and says, "Nothing. I don't want to be anything." She refused to have her face painted.
You should have seen Jeff's face when Madelynn's unpainted cheeks came into view. I would have laughed if I wasn't so busy fighting back the tears.