It all started the Friday night before Allie’s first Buddy Walk, Tim suggests we go out to eat at Applebee’s. I agree and as we sit down to the table with the baby seat already waiting for Allie, the waiter brings us the menus and says “Here are some crayons and Poppees for the baby”. Of course, I’m thinking first of all, did he just bring a baby crayons? And wait… did he just say “Poppees”? As I’m thinking this, everything is in slow motion. I’m trying to figure out what he is placing on the table and he is slowly moving his hand off of them, I see these different colored wooden pieces. He backs away and I’m in shock. I’m looking at Poppees!!! I’m so confused and not sure I heard him right. So, I ask him (nicely at first), “What did you call these?”. He nonchalantly answers “Poppees” and then asks us what we’d like to drink - as if what has just happened is the normal procedure of the day. I then get a little excited and ask him directly where he is from and why did he call these Poppees. He stares at me. I try to explain that no one calls these things Poppees. How did he know they were Poppees? He is starting to look a little afraid of me at this point and literally starts backing away from me! He stumbles out that “this is just what they are called” and then he leaves. But, before he gets away he points to the table next to me and asks if I know the people sitting there and that maybe I should ask them. I glance at the man facing me and quickly decide that I don’t know him. Now I’m even more confused than before and I’m wondering why our waiter is so strange. Why did he do that? A normal person would have caught on at this point; but, me… no, not me. I look at the man facing me. I decide he does look rather familiar and he must be famous. Clearly that is where I’ve seen him before. I try to get Tim to look, but Tim is probably deciding he doesn’t know me either and informs me it would be rude for him to turn around and stare. So, for a second… I’m distracted. Then, it comes back to me.
There are Poppees in the middle of my table! They are familiar. I’m handing them to Allie to play with them and get her first “Poppee experience” and I’m thrilled for her. Tim mentions they look old. I agree…. I’m thinking they looked “used” and must have a ton of germs on them and I suggest we get a baby wipe to clean them off. I didn’t see it, but clearly he must have rolled his eyes at my not having – or catching – a clue even at this point. The waiter comes back, I ask again… “Where are you from” ??? I’m told it sounded like I was interrogating him and he did seem even more afraid of me. He evasively said they moved around alot and then…he fled the scene! So, I’m rambling (like I do) and going on about Poppees and the waiter that won’t tell me anything and wondering who the famous person is next to us. In fact, the man even approaches my table and compliments Allie! Okay… this works every time for those of you wanting to distract me. Talk about Allie and I’ll stop the world to discuss her (that is shocking to you, isn’t it?). At this point, I’m wondering why the man’s dinner date didn’t turn around. Didn’t she know that he just met a baby? Don’t all women turn around when a baby is present? Surely this woman must be daft to not even acknowledge her date talking to another woman and a baby. My baby of all babies! But, again, he walks away and I go on and on and on about the Poppees ignoring all dinner suggestions and attempts to change the conversation. I even get a phone call in the middle of all this from Maureen (who lives in Chicago) and she tells me she is at an Applebee’s, too! I tell her about the Poppees and she is surprised, but quickly has to hang up the phone. Strange call. For those that have a clue, they might have caught on at this point… nope, not me... Finally, after everyone in the vicinity is sick and tired of hearing about Poppees, the “famous” man from the next table and his date – my SISTER MAUREEN make themselves known to me! I, of course, am shocked since I didn’t have a clue through any of this!
Clearly you can see I provide the entertainment for my family. I finally got it! They set the waiter up (although, I don’t think he liked his part), she brought the Poppees, and they looked “old” as Tim pointed out because they were mine! (Okay.. he is in trouble for the “old” part). It was all planned out. Maureen and her not so famous, but very nice friend Dave (who I had seen only in pictures) showed up to take part in Allie’s first Buddy Walk. And… to get a huge laugh out of me - the little “clueless” sister. Oh, and it needs to be noted that when we arrived Maureen was in the restroom, so to get her back to the table without walking in front of me caused a problem. She ended up walking around the whole restaurant and walking past me. I still didn't even see her!
Maureen also brought Allie the other Poppees she had including a house, a bus, and the school house - which was mine as you can see from my misspelled name. It really was fantastic having them surprise me and now we have a story that we all will laugh at forever. Yes, I'm laughing, too. Plus, Allie has been introduced to Mommy's Poppees. And, she also has her own version of Poppees, but that is another story.
Maureen, Dave and Allie
Allie and her Mommy's Poppee