When I picked the kids up this evening they begged to go to the beach. I wasn’t too keen on the idea, because today was incredibly hot, but I agreed we could go for a little while. When we got to the beach I shoved the van key, my phone, and a protein bar in my pocket.
The waves were calmer this evening than they were yesterday, so I allowed the kids to play in them for a little while. Baby E really enjoyed having the waves splash over him as he sat in the sand. Big E wandered out further than normal, and C enjoyed digging on the beach. We stayed much longer than I anticipated, and by the time we got off the beach it was already after 7. We went over to the outdoor showers, rinsed off, and headed back to the van. That’s when I realized it…
The key in my pocket was NOT the van key. It was the car key. My van key was securely locked in the van. Great. I have three hungry, tired, dripping wet children (one of which was only wearing a diaper at this point) and no way to get in the van. I had a moment of anxiety as I thought through my options. I’m the adult! I have to figure this out and I can’t freak out, cause my kids will freak out! We live close to the beach, so we could walk home, but I don’t have spare key for the van, so that wouldn’t be all that helpful. I could call a tow truck. I wonder how much that will cost. Then I saw the police car parked a few spaces down. I approached and the officer rolled down his window. I explained my situation and that I was locked out. He didn’t have any tools, but he said he could call around and see if there was anyone nearby. At this point the kids are freaking out that we will never get in the van, but I assure them in a calm voice that we will be just fine.
After a few minutes the officer says there is no-one around to help, so I might need to call a tow company, but he would keep trying. I weighed my options and looked at my incredibly hungry children. I made the spur of the moment decision to wait it out a little while longer in the hopes he could get ahold of someone. In the meantime, I broke my silence about the nearby ice cream store having italian ice, and I dragged all three kids to get some (Yup, Baby E was still just in a diaper.)
The kids were super excited when I explained they were having ice cream for dinner and suddenly they completely forgot about being locked out of the van. All attention was on ice cream. We each got a mango italian ice and we headed back in the direction of our van. By the time we got there, another police officer had arrived and he had the tools to break into the van. It took him less than a minute and he was in!! I thanked him profusely, and the kids and I sat down on the sidewalk to finish our ‘dinner.’ When we got home, we supplemented with some buttered bread, cherries, and peanut butter and celery sticks.
We ran out of time for a proper bath, so the kids went to bed sandy, but incredibly happy. They fell asleep quickly, too!
So while tonight was certainly a mommy-fail, I’m going to claim a mommy-win as well! 🙂