October 11, 2011 by Gina
A few days ago I took the boys to the Minnesota Zoo with a friend and her toddler. We had a blast! Finn and his friend, Ben, ran the entire time through Grizzly Coast, the Wells Fargo Family Farm and the Northern Trail. They hardly stopped to see the animals and just enjoyed being together and running free! But this post isn’t about the zoo, or the animals at the zoo. It is about a monkey – a very special monkey – Finn’s monkey.
Finn, like many toddlers, has a special lovey – his Monkey. It’s a brown square of fabric with a monkey’s head on it. He received it as a baby gift from a dear friend of mine and became so attached to it that I had the foresight to order another one from Amazon in case we lost one (see, I told you I order alot from Amazon!). Well…that was a few years ago and we still have two monkies but one has seen better days. It no longer has a mouth or part of an ear. Finn knows the difference but it doesn’t bother him – he loves them both the same.
So, how does Monkey tie into the Minnesota Zoo? It would be really exciting if I told you that Monkey fell into the monkey enclosure and was adopted by the Snow Monkies as their own. Nope – didn’t happen. He had Monkey in the car and as we walked into the main entrance and somewhere between there and the penguins, Monkey disappeared. I retraced our steps and asked at the information desk right away and as we left the zoo later that morning. It was nowhere to be found.
No big deal – I had the extra monkey at home. Of course as soon as we got into the car to drive home, Finn immediately asked for Monkey!! In some quick mom thinking, I stalled and told him we’d have to stop at the store really quick on the way home and he could have Monkey after that. Amma Maternity, a great retail store and mother’s education center, carries the Angel Dear lovies – I just hoped they had his monkey! Please, please, please have the monkey!!
We arrived at the store and I told the store clerk in a hushed voice, “We have an emergency!!! I need to buy a monkey and this little guy can’t know about it.” I saw the Angel Dear blankies and felt relief – they had a monkey, but it was much lighter in color than his spare monkey at home. Guess we’d have to buy two so they matched but there was only one there. Maybe they had one in the back of the store? Please, please, please have one in the back! Yes, they did so we bought them both. Back to the car boys!
We get back in the car and Finn immediately asked for Monkey (not knowing that I just bought one – he was distracted with a book in the store). I tear off the tags and pass Monkey to him. He says in the sweetest voice you’ve ever heard, “This not mine monkey. This monkey soft and clean.” (DISCLAIMER: his monkey is soft and clean!) Man, I can’t get anything past this kid and he’s only 2! I reassured him it was Monkey and that was the end of it.
New Monkey (monkies really, but Finn doesn’t know that) is a comfort and love to Finn just like old Monkey. The old spare monkey sans ear and mouth is tucked away in Finn’s memory box and someday he’ll hear this story. In the meantime, Monkey is tucked into bed, sleeping soundly with my favorite little boy!