Mall of America

We’re not exactly mall enthusiasts. This shouldn’t really surprise anyone. But when we happen to be in the area of America’s largest mall, we had to check it out. And when this mall has a program called “Toddler Tuesdays” and we have toddlers and happen to be in town on a Tuesday… done deal. So we decided to brave the Mall of America. And we had a great day!

Picture in the parking garage. I took the camera out to photograph where we parked so we’d be able to find our car again. 

“Toddler Tuesdays” means that they have something special (and free) for kids under 5 every Tuesday. The week we were there, it was mini golf. It was Emelie’s first attempt at mini golf and let’s just say I’m glad we didn’t pay for it. She didn’t get it. At all. She wanted to pick up the ball every time she hit it and she thought it was much more fun to roll it in with her hands. And she wanted to help everyone else roll their balls into the cups too. Thankfully, no one around us had paid for it either, and none of their kids got it either. So all around us were boys playing sword fights with their clubs and little girls talking about their favorite ball colors, and basically complete golf anarchy. It was hilarious. We, like just about everyone else, gave up after about 7 holes. But all the kids got medals at the end.. She was so proud and excited! And we eventually had to hide it because she insisted on sleeping in it and I was afraid she’d strangle herself.

This was taken on the first hole. And I’m glad I took it then, because it was one of the few times she’s sort of doing it the way it’s intended.

The only picture of the medal that even semi turned out. If you look closely she’s standing on her toes. But otherwise there was just too much jumping up and down for a decent picture.

There is also an amusement park in the center of the mall. Not just a carousel or a couple of rides, but an actual amusement park. Our original plan was to skip the rides altogether. But then we saw it. The swing ride. In several of the places we’ve been this summer, they had the swing ride, and since Emelie’s absolute favorite thing is swinging, she has longed to ride it. But every time, she’s not been tall enough. Until now. The one at MOA has some of the chairs that are double so that little ones can ride with a chaperon. She only had to be 39 inches tall. I’m not sure she would’ve been 39 inches without her shoes on – it was that close – but she was tall enough to ride. So we broke down and bought her a strip of ride points, which were also significantly discounted for Toddler Tuesday. As it turns out, they don’t charge for the adult chaperon to ride along, which we thought was really decent. But it also meant that she had twice as many ride points, since we weren’t using any to ride with her. She tried the ferris wheel, a train ride, and several other things which she really liked a lot. But in the end, she rode that swing ride 3 times, and when all her points were gone on that last swing, she cried and cried and we had to pull her off of it kicking and screaming.

Oh how it wished that we hadn’t left the good camera in the car!

There’s also a Lego World store in the mall, right by the amusement park. They have Duplo tables in a little seating area so that kids can build and have fun. This place was amazing, whether or not you happen to be a Lego nerd (Staffan is, I am not). 

The wall of Lego. Sorted by color and size. I think you buy it by weight.

Just think, someone’s job is to build these larger than life displays out of Lego. I can think of worse jobs.

Toddler Tuesday was a pretty good deal. A lot of the mall restaurants had “kids eat free” specials in honor of Toddler Tuesday and we got a coupon for buy-one-get-one-free ice cream. So after a very full day, we wrapped up with some ice cream and went on our way.

Tired, but never too tired for ice cream. Still sporting her medal, of course.

And so it was that we spent an entire day in a mall without actually shopping. Well, with one exception. Somewhere along the line, Peter took his pacifier, strap and all, and threw it without us noticing. We tried retracing our steps, but it’s a big place and we’d been all over. He was fussy and not settling down to nap without it, so I set out to buy a new one. How hard could it be, right? I’m in America’s largest mall. I looked everywhere I could think of for over an hour before someone finally said they’d seen them at Nordstrom. And so we also found out how long you have to listen to your baby cry before you’re willing to pay Nordstrom’s prices to buy the only pacifier in all of the Mall of America.

But even with the crying baby and the nearly fruitless paci-quest, we still had a really great day!

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