Friendfish and duckfriend
Tuesday January 25th 2011, 11:49 pm
Filed under: Family,Friends,Life

Five o’clock at Trader Joe’s. I usually avoid grocery stores at that hour, but there I was.

And there was an old friend; she saw me first. Hi! We talked a moment, I did the grandma stereotype and whipped out a couple of Parker pictures, we laughed. There’s nothing like an unexpected moment together to take the drudgery out of the shopping.

And then, as we chatted again at checkout a few minutes later, there was a young mom with a toddler and he was quickly going into escalation mode.

My friend smiled at them both, remembering when her teenagers were that size, saying that they get tired and hungry at this hour (as in, it’s okay); meantime, I reached over with a yellow-with-brown-stripes duck fingerpuppet.

The woman looked at me, gobsmacked, questioning…? No, I told her, I didn’t make it–though it is handknit. A women’s cooperative in Peru does these.

And now the man behind her in the line was smiling.

Another young mom with another toddler was next up behind A., and that little girl with the most adorable curls was as happy as could be. That mom helped us help the stressed mom by admiring the ducky to help the little boy be charmed by sheer peer pressure. (Totally worked, too.)

So out came another one. A striped green fish!

Oh you don’t have to do that! the second mom exclaimed in surprise.

May I?

And then I got to watch those two playing happily with it while A. finished up–and now everybody around us was happy.

The power of the fingerpuppet (not to mention A.!)

Maybe I should make a hat with a pocket and tuck one inside.

18 Comments so far
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Go Puppet-power! I think of you when I hear a toddler melting down.

Comment by LynnM 01.26.11 @ 1:37 am

What a nice story. I remember shopping with my kids at that age. They melt down so quickly. What a nice thing to do. I see a cute little sweater for Parker with 2 pockets and puppets in each.

Comment by pat Flores 01.26.11 @ 5:26 am

love all the Parker pictures – keep them coming! It reminds me of when my almost 12-year old was a newborn – I almost want to do it again. (Scratch that, no I don’t. But it’s nice to dream…)

Comment by Sandra 01.26.11 @ 6:38 am

Parker is just absolutely adorable.

Love to hear how those finger puppets work their magic. Bet those moms will never forget their shopping experience and how you rescued them.

Comment by Joansie 01.26.11 @ 7:11 am

Love the idea of a hat with a puppet pocket!

Comment by Channon 01.26.11 @ 7:59 am

a hat with a pocket — hmmm, haven’t seen one of those — perhaps knit in coordinating colors or patterns (I can see the fish puppet in the pocket of a sea green hat!) — cool idea

Comment by Bev 01.26.11 @ 8:35 am

I see your practicing your “grandma” tactics.You’ll be ready when Parker is that age,well you are all ready. Always good to have someone who’s been there to help a new parent.And helping the knitters in Peru.

Comment by kris 01.26.11 @ 8:58 am

Oh, what a great story! Maybe I need to start dashing off finger puppets with my leftover sock yarn…

And, more Parker pics! Always welcome! He has such a sweet face… what a cutie!

Comment by Pegi 01.26.11 @ 9:02 am

Years ago, my cousin’s wife delivered a severely premature infant they named Parker. Everyone prayed earnestly that he would grow as he should, but I think we over prayed a little, because for a couple of years they called the poor kid Porker. Your Parker seems to be growing at a more steady, sensible rate.

Comment by LauraN 01.26.11 @ 9:46 am

Well I remember, as a single mom, having to go to the market after work and picking Kitty up at daycare, both of us tired, cranky and hungry, and fervently hoping that neither of us pitched a fit and disgraced ourselves. Brava for the finger puppet therapy, and Brava for experienced moms willing to help out the newbie. One day she, too, will smile at a stressed out mom, and pay it forward.

Comment by Patricia Day 01.26.11 @ 10:33 am

I LOVE that top photo of Parker! He is just adorable! He seems ready to say, “I wuv you, daddy.”

And you and your finger puppets! You are the magical Good Fairy.

Comment by Don Meyer 01.26.11 @ 12:51 pm

Oops. That should be Mommy.

Comment by Don Meyer 01.26.11 @ 12:52 pm

Such fun! I didn’t meet anyone during MY trip to TJ’s yesterday, but I did take two friends with me in the first place….:-) Not a chore when it’s an outing, right?

Comment by Ruth 01.26.11 @ 1:45 pm

Another YES to hat with finger puppet in pocket! If the congresspeople have something to say, they could think about how it would sound coming from a finger puppet and make a decision on wisdom such “something”. And finger puppet purchase from women’s co-op in Peru helps the women and the international trade balance!

Comment by Another Joan 01.26.11 @ 2:12 pm

I learned from you, to keep finger puppets in my church bag. They generally get a smile!

Comment by sherry in Idaho 01.26.11 @ 2:52 pm

The only question I have, is why haven’t I ordered a bunch of those finger puppets yet? Must get on that…

Comment by twinsetellen 01.26.11 @ 4:21 pm

Reading this post makes me smile as well. It is amazing how small things (in both size and scale) make such a big difference in so many lives…

I bet the store was calmer and happier thanks to these puppets. 🙂

Comment by Suzanne in Montreal 01.27.11 @ 10:21 am

I Love the idea of Puppet Pocket Hats!
(if only h.a.t. began with a P!)

Comment by Diana Troldahl 01.27.11 @ 7:29 pm

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