if you've seen the photo alex posted below, then you know that penny got to meet elmo tonight. but not just the walkaround elmo, penny got to meet the real thing, too - and got two "kiss kiss"es from him! she also met cookie monster. let's take a step back.
alex was invited to the red carpet launch event of the let's rock elmo toy, where kids were strongly encouraged to attend. i left work early to meet them, and we all entered the lobby of the empire hotel. we waited for a bit in the lobby, then went up the stairs, checked in, and saw cookie monster! penny was a bit shy with him, but gave him a high five, and seemed really pleased with that. we headed back to elmo's "tour bus", where penny got the chance to check out the toys - and she had a blast! i chatted a bit with the toy's designer, who was super nice, and seemed really happy that the kids were having a good time. we ate some chicken fingers and sliders, and drank a juice box, then got on the line to meet the walkaround elmo. penny was starting to get a bit sleepy and cranky at that point, but she got her second wind, discovered a counting cookie monster toy, had a second round with the tour bus toys and then it was time to line up and head into seats. we got to see the world premiere of an elmo video, and then randy jackson and elmo performed. penny was transfixed - she truly loves elmo.
after the performance, kevin clash and elmo came out into the crowd to say hi to all of the kids, and penny got her kisses! she was thrilled! alex had brought her to the event in her elmo stroller, and she had an emotional reunion with it - she missed it so much. on our way out, we got a ridiculous amount of swag, and took a moment to breathe. it's a good thing we did, because the subways were completely screwed up. it was insanely crowded*, and penny was on the verge of a meltdown for the entire way - and i can't blame her. we got home, took off our shoes, and penny went straight to sleep, but not before we talked about the fun time she had at the elmo party. "cookie high five!" is how she summed it up.
i feel super lucky to have met kevin clash nine years ago, and i feel even luckier to have been able to bring penny to this event. sometimes i really can't believe my life.
*the highlight of my subway ride home were two frummy ladies who spent the whole trip talking about food. as it turns out, haggis is "just like a kishka."