Kick-off Summer with FREE Smoothies on 5/29 but BEWARE BEEEWAAARREE

SRSLY you guys. Get your delicious Tropical Smoothie. But it might be cursed.

May 23, 2024

I'm pretty certain that smoothies are cursed based on the catastrophes and poopsplosions that always seem to be the end result.  It's probably some kind of voodoo.  Will that stop me from getting my own free smoothie on Wednesday, May 29th for National Flip Flop day?  Of course not!  The cursed things are too darn delicious to resist.  Here's what you need to know to get your own free smoothie, and if you have a minute, sit back and enjoy my tale of smoothie induced woe.  

Just stop in to your nearest participating Tropical Smoothie Cafe with your favorite pair of flip-flops to claim your FREE 12 oz. Island-Punch Smoothie.  Easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy.  

West shore readers can check out the Tropical Smoothie Cafe at 3601 Market Street.

Harrisburg friends should hit up the cafe at Strawberry Square.


Alright, you've asked for it.  

First a little background.  I went into this ordeal already having experienced THE CURSE OF THE SMOOTHIE and knowing some answers to some very important meaning-life-type questions.  Questions like: What happens when your 4YO drops a very large, very full, very red smoothie down the basement steps and then then while you are treating the basement carpet your 2YO has an epic poosplosion? What happens when that poop simply cannot be contained by the measly pull up he is wearing so he tries to clean it up by wiping it on your living room furniture? What happens when your four-year-old then mooches YOUR smoothie that you REALLY wanted because his smoothie has just repainted several walls in your home? AND WHAT HAPPENS WHEN HE THEN HE DROPS YOUR SMOOTHIE AND IT EXPLODES ALL OVER THE KITCHEN YOU JUST CLEANED THIS MORNING WHILE HIS LITTLE BUTT WAS SLEEPING AnD ThEN hE ThRoWs a FiT BEcaUse YoU WonT MaKE hiM anOtheR SmooTHie?!?!

I’ll tell you the answers later. And if there were any survivors.  But the point of this little prologue is that really I can only blame myself.  I should have known better, yes, I should have known.  

Our real tale starts a few years ago when little Baby Ridley, my third, wakes up from a particularly fussy night. Oh no, where is my precious baby and what is this changeling goblin that has been left in his crib? It has goo for eyes! Poor darling Riddler has contracted double pink eye.

Do I squirt his eyes with booby juice? Remove the goo? Leave it? I’m a third time mom, I should know this! But I call the pediatrician anyway. The doc calls us in the appropriate eye drops and tells me not to have to baby around other kids the rest of the day because he’s highly plague shedding.

Poor darling Riddler has contracted double pink eye.

Do I squirt his eyes with booby juice? Remove the goo? Leave it? I’m a third time mom, I should know this! But I call the pediatrician anyway. The doc calls us in the appropriate eye drops and tells me not to have to baby around other kids the rest of the day because he’s highly plague shedding.

Our plans were to hit up a hike-it-baby gathering, or if I wasn’t quite up to it, Little Learners at the Whitaker Center. But, those plans were now impossible, and I needed to come up with something quick to avoid unparalleled disappointment from Roland, who at the time of this narrative, was quickly vacillating between a 4 year old or 13 year old.

“What are we doing today, Mommy? Is it Wednesday?” he chirped. 

“Yes my love, but honey sugarplum dear, but alas, we can’t go to Little Learners today. But I have a surprise for you, my darling! We need to pick up some medicine for sweet little baby Ridley, and afterwards we can go and get smoothies!” (It had been a hot minute since the stairs episode, for obvious reasons, so I knew I had him at smoothies).

"A STRAWBERRY smoothie?  Can it be strawberry?  You KNOW how I hate orange."

"Of course, my little love.  A strawberry smoothie just for you!" 

“Yay! Mommy, can it be a pajama party?”

“Of course! What a wonderful idea!”

So I wait for the call that the prescription is ready. And I wait. And finally, at 1:30, the Rx is ready and the children are hangry. I COULD have fed everyone lunch, but I knew that smoothies were on the horizon.  I COULD have gotten everyone dressed over those hours, but I didn't.   After all, I’m loving Roland’s PJ idea and I embrace it 100%! Do I put on a bra? NO! I let the girls (Dorothy and Blanche) swing free. After all, both tropical smoothie and the pharmacy have drive-throughs. I do however put on a pad quick since darling baby Ridley's massive head forever changed my pelvic floor and I can no longer cough without peeing myself. So with my boobs resting peacefully in my depends cladded lap I set off on an adventure to obtain medicine like an octogenarian departing the old folks home!

First stop, pharmacy. Uneventful. Although they did try to make me come in to update insurance cards, I wheedled my way out of that one like a pro.

Next stop, Tropical Smoothie.

So many questions from the back of the mini-van. “Mommy, how do daddy seeds get into mommy eggs anyway? Do bees do it?” Yes. Yes they do. “Mommy, can we listen to Pit Bull?” No.

Finally, about halfway there, all three kids fall asleep. It’s beautiful. It’s so quiet, and as a bonus I can turn on my swearful and mildly spicy audiobook.

I get to the Tropical Smoothie and they must be waiting on a shipment because the lids for the kid’s cups don’t fit quite right and the straws are way way WAY too long. No way they are getting these in the car. Thank goodness they are asleep and thank goodness gracious I am now an experienced smoothie catastrophe avoiding expert.  I'm feeling very smart and very smug as I make way back home.  

Both “big” kids wake up as we pull in the driveway and I pass out the goodies. “Mommy, why is my smoothie orange?” What? He takes a sip and gags. “This isn’t strawberry!” It sure isn’t. Sigh. Ok.

Not the end of the world. We don’t have anything else to do today. We will just go back. To Camp Hill. From Carlisle. I count backwards from ten and load them back up. I can’t take Rhysie’s (the 2 year old) smoothie away now – he’s starving- so I just let him have it in the car, knowing it’s a bad idea. But I’m living on the edge now.

Right as we get on 81 the dreaded words rise up from the very back of the van. “Mommy? I have to go potty.”

What? Now? Can you hold it? “Um… ok.” So I’m coaching him like a taxi driver with a mom in labor in the back. You can do it buddy. Hold it in. You’ve got this. Just a little further! BREATH BUDDY BREATH. 

We make it to 581 and finally to the Carlisle pike exit. He’s not gonna make it. We are going to have to use a bathroom somewhere. But where? I look at my saggy saggy boobs and think about my unwashed hair. I picture my diseased infant in the backseat and my ragamuffin shoeless toddler and preschooler in ill-fitting PJs covered with the usual scrapes and bruises.

Surely if we try to use the bathroom at some establishment on the pike someone will call child services. I look deranged! We look homeless and ill. The children look neglected. I haven't even fed them.  This could be it. The end of my family!

Then I have an idea! My Gym! We’re so close! The staff have known my boys their whole lives! They know I’m not an unfit mother! It’s all going to be OK! I see it getting closer like a haven in the darkness, an oasis in the desert.

We race there and I pull up to the curb like I’m out of that movie I can’t think of the name of with the fast cars driving erratically.

But, why… why is it so dark? Did you know that my gym is closed on Wednesday afternoons for cleaning? Neither did I. But now I do.   It’s ok though! There, at the other end of the parking lot is a grassy area with a tree. Perfect! We swing around and I pull the 4-year-old out of the van as he shouts “I can’t hold it! I can’t hold it!” I hold him up and out of the van like he is Simba being presented to his kingdom(bare feet, remember) a he gets back to nature and waters the tree in full view of the Carlisle pike.

That was a close one. Disaster averted. Back on the road and on our way to the strawberry smoothie at the end of the rainbow.

And my gaslight comes on.

*&*^(@&*&*(@)*(@)$)*(*()@*)@*(*  I think I invented some new words.  

We can make it. We can make it.

The tale of woe and tragedy is getting long so let me fast forward. Somehow, we get the smoothie, Roland is happy, and we coast home on fumes. No, my friends, thankfully we did not run out of gas on our way home.

I unload the kids from the car and Roland is a sticky mess as expected. Rhys, though, appears to have done a pretty good job. There isn’t a drop of smoothie on the front of his pjs.

And then I lift him out of his car seat.

Don’t worry. It’s not poop yet. Just chocolate banana smoothie. I still don’t know how he ONLY got it under his butt. It was a lot though. Soaked his pull-up too.  (Three years later this is still a mystery.)

So I strip him and run upstairs to draw a bath. I know that once again I’m living on the edge, tempting fate. Rhys has been known to pee on the pack and play on occasion when left in his birthday suit.  But I’m on a good lucky streak and I’m feeling confident. After all, Roland didn’t pee in the car and we didn’t run out of gas. And I’ll only be a minute.

A lot can happen in a minute. A lot of poop can happen in a minute. A lot of poop on my nice rug which I can now scrub while I day-drink and cry. Because they both jumped in it. Why? Why did they jump in it?

I had to pre-bathe them before their real bath because they JUMPED IN IT.

Have I learned anything from this, you may ask?  Yes.  I have learned that Tropical Smoothie is worth a LOT of heartache, because we've remained loyal in the years since this occurred and my family will definitely be claiming our FREE smoothies on Wednesday.

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