Curtis Rogers wanted to make sure Rachel Chapman—who has been his babysitter for over a year—would get the chance to put on her prom dress and dance to her heart's content.
One young man pulled all the stops for his 17-year-old babysitter after he heard she wouldn't be able to go to prom. 7-year-old Curtis Rogers wanted to make sure Rachel Chapman—who has been his babysitter for over a year—would get the chance to put on her prom dress and dance to her heart's content even though the pandemic robbed her of the chance to celebrate her graduation, in-person prom, and a slew of other senior year experiences. With the help of his mom, Elissa Rogers, young Curtis put together the perfect social-distance prom evening for Rachel in his very own backyard.
"I was so surprised," Rachel told Good Morning America. "I had no idea he was going to go all out. It was very thoughtful and sweet." The teen, a senior at Sanderson High School in Raleigh, North Carolina, began watching Curtis—then a kindergartener—last year when his family needed someone to pick him up from his after-school program and take him to piano lessons. Although Rachel initially started helping out with the young boy a few days a week, over the summer it morphed into an everyday job.
According to Grown and Flown, since Curtis' parents did not want him to spend a lot of time in front of screens, Rachel would plan a lot of creative activities for the young boy and the two would spend a lot of time outdoors. "She has become apart of our family... he absolutely adores her," said Curtis' mom. "She's a just great person with a good heart so it's been a blessing to have her helping us out with Curtis." When schools closed due to the pandemic, the boy's parents began working from home and kept to their "bubble" seeing very few people. Rachel stopped babysitting Curtis and although the pair would FaceTime occasionally, the time they spent together drastically reduced.
When his mother explained the current health crisis to young Curtis and told him that Rachel couldn't have a prom, his immediate response was: "We can throw a mini prom." And so when she heard about a neighborhood parade honoring Class of 2020 graduates, she decided to surprise Rachel with Curtis being at the end of it and holding a sign asking her to "mini-prom." Rachel, obviously couldn't refuse the cutest promposal anyone's ever seen and agreed to meet her young friend at his house earlier this week.
Curtis left no stone unturned for Rachel's mini-prom, dressing up in a dapper suit, picking out the menu based on food he and Rachel normally would enjoy together, and putting together a playlist with all their favorite songs. "Curtis had the menu all planned – they would start with apple slices and peanut butter – their usual afternoon snack. He remembered her favorite drink – Diet Dr. Pepper and that she likes to mix the ketchup and mayo to dip her fries. So sweet," revealed Rachel's mom, Becky Helton Chapman.
"They had tropical smoothies for dessert. Then they danced. He made a playlist. Oh, and his mom used a 6 ft pool noodle to help Curtis understand the distance they needed to keep. He walked with Rachel, with the noodle between them," she added. "It was a sweet thing for him to do. They have a special relationship." Posting photographs from Rachel and Curtis' mini-prom on Facebook, Chapman wrote: Rachel has been a nanny for Curtis for over a year. When he realized her senior prom was canceled, he wanted to throw one for her. Complete with her favorite foods, flowers, and dancing, Curtis (and his mom) pulled off the best socially distant prom ever. Thanks, Curtis & Elissa Rogers for making my girl smile.