So, Ryder has a *slight* addiction to cars.
He plays with them. He takes them to bed at night. He makes highly annoying noises; emulating the roar of an engine, the impact of a collision, and – my personal ticket to hell – the screeching sound of brakes.
Oh, happy day.
At last count, he has over 100 toy cars – a smörgåsbord of Hot Wheels, die cast models, mini Kinder Surprise cars and even a ride-on Fisher-Price Cadillac Escalade (or the “Escalegg” as he refers to it). I don’t even know how he amassed such a collection; most of the cars conveniently disappeared during my massive decluttering session, only to reappear a few days later.
However, if there’s one car that Ryder treasures above all; one car he plays with EVERY single day – it’s his die cast red MINI Cooper. Fashioned to look exactly like my own, it was gifted to him by his Uncle Adam after a trip to San Francisco, and he’s been hooked ever since. At first, he referred to it as “Mommy’s Car”, but now he correctly (lovingly?) addresses the toy as “Red MINI Cooper”.
(Not to be confused with ”Blue MINI Cooper”, the car he’s been asking for, and “Green MINI Cooper”, the car he wants mommy to buy. Oh, and “Silver MINI Cooper” which is just on another level. Of course.)
So today, on a day when soccer practice was a little scary, and his little brother was a little annoying, Ryder was feeling particularly low. And after it was apparent that not even Popsicles and pretzels could pull him out of his sour mood, I decided to take him and Reid on a little road trip.
“Where are we going, Mommy?” he asked.
“It’s a surprise,” I replied.
Ten minutes later, we rounded the corner and the MINI Oakville dealership came into view.
“Ta-da!” I exclaimed. “We came to visit MINI Coopers at their home!”
Okay, so you know how parents record their child’s reaction when they are told they’re going to Disney? I wish I had recorded Ryder’s reaction as we pulled into the parking lot. His eyes nearly bugged out of his head.
“MOMMY!” he yelled. “We’re visiting the MINI Coopers? In their home? I’m so happy! I love you MINI Coopers! I’m here to see you!“
He proceeded to try to throw himself through the car window in an attempt to exit the car – so excited was he. Outside, he toured the grounds and took turns speaking to each and every car on the lot, identifying them by colour and characteristic.
“Look at this Blue MINI Cooper. He’s a good car! He’s a special car!”
“This Green MINI Cooper loves you Mommy. You need to buy him!”
“What? A Silver Mini Cooper? This is a special car! This is the most special car ever!”
And so on.
Friends, it looks like we’ve found Ryder’s happy place.
We left the dealership after much coaxing and many promises to return soon. Who knew happiness was such a short jaunt away?
As for me, long time readers will remember when I first brought home my MINI – can you believe the lease is almost up? Now, over 3 years and another little boy later, I’m wondering if it’s time to trade in for a more “sensible” family car.
Probably not. #MINI4LIFE