December 15, 2013
When it comes to television shows we are a Yo Gabba Gabba house. Have been for about two years. Remember when Canyon got his first Foofa? And then the singing and dancing Brobee? Calliou and Dora are not welcome here. Sesame Street and the Teletubbies are welcome to visit, but Yo Gabba Gabba is our main thing. We have the toys. We have the clothes. We know the songs and the dances. And when Yo Gabba Gabba comes to town, we go.
This year I thought I had missed the discount tickets to the Yo Gabba Gabba Live Holiday Special so I posted on Facebook for people to let me know if they heard of any deals. So when the Groupon offer hit my friend Amy messaged me first thing in the morning. I saw it when I was off walking in the woods so I called John at home and we ordered the tickets immediately, to get the best seats. We were smart about it and ordered an extra ticket so we could recruit my sister to come and help with the kids. We knew things might get crazy. (Over the next three days I got about twenty messages from friends letting us know about the deal. Thanks for looking out for us everyone!)
Now the kids didn’t know all this was happening. They probably wouldn’t have understood if I did tell them. But I knew. Oh I knew. And I was excited. This was my taking the kids to Disneyworld moment. Silly I know, but hey, they LOVE this show. We took Canyon last year but River and Raven were too little. This year they were still probably too little but I knew they would love it.
The day finally came! We loaded everyone up in the minivan and headed to Rosemont. I was excited. Like, really excited. Like, giddily explaining the show to my sister non-stop. The kids were all dressed in their Yo Gabba Gabba t-shirts, we had packed three of the dolls so that we could avoid the ugly scenes at the merchandise counter. On the drive I kept getting more and more ramped up. My sister just looked at me like I was insane. She had seen the toys at our house and been to our Yo Gabba Gabba themed birthday parties but she never really experienced the show and it had been years since her kids were little enough to attend these kind of things.
We got there. The kids were excited just to be a the theatre.
And they all split off into different directions! We got there a bit too early so the kids had plenty of time to explore. John took Canyon, Jenny got Raven and I had River.
She was running all over, happy dancing and hopping. I looked around and would catch glimpses of Jenny and John with their charges. We were all in motion!
Thankfully the show started and we tried to trap all three in their seats with the enticement of milk. Raven was interested but we kind of don’t think he realized they were real at first. River was wide eyed and wanted to rush the stage. Canyon was a little overwhelmed with the sensory input and the excitement so John held his ears for him. He lasted in his seat about ten minutes tops and then he was racing around the theatre. Luckily the ushers at this show do not care if you run around so he was all over the place, John following behind. Raven was happy to sit in his seat and eat snacks and watch the show. River still wanted to rush the stage. Then she NEEDED to rush the stage. So we rushed the stage. But even that wasn’t enough. She was crying, her little arms open wide-her sign for, “I WANT TO HOLD THEM!!!”
Luckily it was intermission and the characters left the stage. Twenty minutes to kill! For us this meant chase children.
For most parents intermission was spent buying stuff. Let’s talk about the merchandise. Holy crap it was expensive! The worst of the expensive items was the light up spinner toy-something that cost about $1.50 wholesale and they sell for $20. TWENTY DOLLARS FOR A STUPID LIGHT UP TOY!!!! And parents were just forking over the cash to get them. This year our kids wanted them but were not desperate for them. Next year I am bringing our own-along with some light up sticks and bracelets. Some parents I saw this year had giant Toys R Us bags with them so they could give the kids the toys in the moment but not pay the crazy merch counter price. But most parents were buying the $50 toddler sweatshirts, light spinners, $5 slices of crappy pizza, etc.
I do love the Yo Gabba Gabba parents. So many cool Dad’s dressed up in character t-shirts. One Dad totally rocked a DJ Lance Rock outfit with his two year old dressed as Brobee. I just wanted to high five all the adults who were just as excited as I was.
After intermission we switched kids and I took Canyon. This was a good excuse to go up front to the stage.
He rolled around in the snowflake glitter that fell during the show.
We got up close and person with Biz Markie,
Then Canyon wanted to go up to the balcony. That was fine. The only scary thing was the railing is pretty much non-existant and I was terrified he would slide over the edge in his excitement. Then he wanted to run up to the very top. The balcony wasn’t even half full so I let him and stayed down on the first landing, watching him run back and fourth. Then he disappeared.
Like, totally disappeared. He was right there, all blonde hair and smiles and then he was gone. Holy. Crap. I raced up to the top and couldn’t see him. There was an elevator door but I would have seen that open. I ran up and down the aisle. No Canyon. I texted John, “I lost Canyon in the balcony.” I ran down the stairs and grabbed security. “I lost my son in the balcony. He is four years old, Autistic and Non-Verbal.” Boom. They were on it. John raced up holding Raven and handed him off to me and headed up the stairs. I dropped Raven with River and Jenny and ran down to the stage, looking for him in our favorite spots. Then I headed back up to the balcony and got word that John had found him. All of this was maybe 8 minutes but it felt like a lifetime. Canyon was just sitting on the floor up there but I couldn’t see him in the dark. I kind of knew he had to be there but I also wasn’t going to take any chances. The show was almost over and I didn’t want him to get swept up in the crowd and head outside alone or with some creep.
John has not given me shit about this. I would have killed him if the roles were reversed.
So back to our seats and I took Raven up to the front for curtain call.
He was impressed!
He was also impressed with watching himself on the camera…
And there were streamer cannons!
I took a huge armful of streamers home so we could relive the moment over and over. (It’s been over a week and I am still cleaning them up!)
By the end we were all exhausted. Jennifer is a children’s musician herself and was not impressed with the songs or the show. I kept trying to defend it to her. I still want to defend it! I sometimes catch myself wanting to call her and say, “But did you notice this?” Ha!
So in the end we were all Razzled and Dazzled in our own way. The kids have been making us watch the Christmas episode of the show over and over and they get extra excited over the parts that were in the live show.
And I am already excited for next year…watch for that Groupon, friends!