Friday, January 28, 2011

Imaginary Advantage

Halle got so angry with me that she removed all of her clothing. Fortunately, we were at home. I don't know why that seemed an appropriate response, but it reminded me of a similar incident involving her father. When we first bought our house, we removed the carpet and began installing laminate flooring. While laying the panels, Willie encountered "some trouble". Whenever power tools are involved, trouble is of massive proportion. We had limited materials, so one wrong cut was a crucial error. He was so frustrated, he wanted to throw something. However, doing so not only would ruin the floor that had all ready been laid, it would not be able to be replaced. Thus, in his anger, he wriggled out of his shirt and threw that on the floor. I think it helped. I laughed so hard I had to leave the room. It was such a logical, well-executed outburst it should not be openly ridiculed.

Anyhow, Halle seems to have inherited this same rationale. She also shares her father's hatred of smelly dogs. Yesterday, Halle began pointing and yelling "Bad dog!" at our innocently relaxing animal. "What are you doing?" I asked. "She's really a good dog. Why are you yelling at her like that?" Halle replied with great feeling, "When she passes gas, she is a bad dog!" It really isn't Maddy's fault. Morgan would rather feed the dog than herself. Occasionally, I have to put the dog outside so that Morgan will eat something.

Since outbursts don't work in gaining the upper hand, Halle has developed a rather ingenious method to get what she wants. She has numerous friends whom she never gets upset with or even argues with. Of course, they're all imaginary, but they seem like good company. She asked me if she could watch a movie today. I told her that she couldn't. "Well, let me ask Grover," she replied. Grover is one of her friends. He has a cat named "Lotion", a herd of cows, and a posse of dinosaurs. "Grover, is it okay if I watch a movie?" (Turning and speaking in a lower voice), "Why, yes, Halle! You may watch a movie! See Mom, it's okay with Grover, so I will go pick one out." These imaginary friends are so handy, I'm thinking of getting myself a few.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Heimlich Maneuver

Halle performed her first successful Heimlich maneuver today. Hearing Morgan wailing, I entered the room she was in and found Halle standing next to her with an expression that read, "I'm going to get in trouble, aren't I?" I demanded to know what had happened. "Well, I just dropped her."
"You WHAT?" 
"I was just trying to get the marble out of her mouth."
I congratulated Halle on her success and thanked God that He works through big sisters. It's amazing how humbling parenting is. It's also amazing how marbles can multiply and race throughout your house, be hidden countless times, and be dragged out of the depths of closets by a determined three year old.

Potato heads share this ability. Their parts never fit in their behinds, and if you find most of them, jam them together, and take them to Goodwill, body parts will miraculously appear and regenerate upon your return. Don't get me started on puzzles.

I have bought numerous puzzles with the intention of sharpening Halle's comprehension, coordination, and creativity. (Apparently, I should just focus on First Aid.) I go crazy before they can serve their purposes. Last Christmas, I bought her a bear puzzle that features Papa Bear, Mama Bear, and Baby Bear. You can change their faces to reflect different emotions as well as their outfits. Unable to wait for the green light for unwrapping, Halle served three separate sentences in time out. When she finally opened the bear puzzle, she arranged the emotions accordingly: Papa Bear and Mama Bear had angry faces, while Baby Bear had tears running down his furry face. 

That puzzle is on top on the refrigerator now. Halle may not have a future in psychology, but the medical field is still in the running.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Last night, I discovered that my 3 year old daughter cheats at cards. It was a bit of a shocking revelation, especially since I hadn't noticed her stealing my Go Fish pairs. She began laughing uproariously and waving a 3 of fishes around. "I stole this card!" she exclaimed, unable to conceal her conquest any longer. Shocked, Willie and I could do nothing but laugh.

Last week, I concealed something perhaps equally impish. At the end of the grocery cycle, I poured the last bit of Rice Crispies and milk into a bowl for Willie. Busy doing something else, we both failed to notice Monkey Cat on the counter feasting on his breakfast. I turned and quickly shooed her away, unsure of the next course of action. If I came clean, Willie would not only miss out on breakfast, (we had NO OTHER food in the house) but he would be very cranky. Wasn't it better that he leave the house with a full stomach and a happy disposition? Wasn't it better that we still have a cat?

Of course, like Halle I could not keep the information to myself and blurted it out after he came home. These events prove that I would make a horrible poker player. Hiding emotion has never held much interest for me. This is something else I inherited from my mother.

Mom and Dad came to visit at Christmas. Mom and I went to the spa, where there is a "quiet area". The quiet area has a hot tub, steam room, and sauna. On the door before you enter, there is a sign that says clothing is optional. To me, that means pants are optional. A bathing suit is not optional. This is America, people. Not a beach in France. A woman who interpreted the sign differently was enjoying the steam room. My mom entered and almost bumped into the woman's ample flesh. "Excuse me!" she said in surprise. If the woman was bothered, she had a better poker face than mine. "No problem," she cheerfully replied. Mom left. Sometimes leaving is the most tactful course of action.